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This article is about the character. For other similar uses, see Toph Beifong (disambiguation).

Toph Beifong is an earthbending master, one of the most powerful of her time, and the discoverer of metalbending. Blind since birth, Toph was constantly treated condescendingly because of her visual impairment, particularly by her overprotective parents, Lao and Poppy Beifong. Upon discovering badgermoles, earthbending animals who are also blind, she learned how to use earthbending as an extension of her senses. This gave her the ability to "see" every vibration that passes through the ground.[17]

Having developed her own unique style of earthbending, Toph acquired a toughened personality and became famous for winning underground earthbending tournaments under the alias "The Blind Bandit", doing so behind her parents' backs.[9] Although initially uninterested in directly aiding the war effort, she eventually chose to leave behind her old life, and travel with Avatar Aang and his friends as his earthbending teacher, when her parents finally became unbearable for her.[8] Toph's total mastery over earthbending, unique personality, and thoughtful pragmatism made her a valuable addition to the team.

After Republic City's formation, Toph became the city's first Chief of Police, forming the Metalbending Police Force to help maintain order.[18] She had two daughters with two different men: Lin, who succeeded her as Chief of Police, and Suyin, who created the metal city of Zaofu. Toph eventually set out to roam the world in search of enlightenment[19] before settling down in the Foggy Swamp.[20]

Quick Answers

What is the significance of Toph Beifong in the Avatar series? toggle section
Toph Beifong is a significant character in the Avatar series due to her unique abilities and contributions to the storyline. Despite being blind since birth, Toph is an earthbending master and the discoverer of metalbending, making her one of the most powerful benders of her time. Her blindness led her to develop a unique style of earthbending, inspired by badgermoles, which allowed her to 'see' through vibrations in the earth. Toph's skills were instrumental in teaching Avatar Aang earthbending, a crucial element in his journey to master all four elements. In her later years, Toph also played a key role in helping Korra, the next Avatar, to overcome her fears and prepare for future threats. Toph's character challenges stereotypes about disability and demonstrates the potential for strength and resilience in the face of adversity.
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How did Toph Beifong discover metalbending? toggle section
Toph discovered metalbending while she was being transported in a metal cage after being captured by Xin Fu and Master Yu. She realized that metal is essentially earth that has been purified and refined. Using her seismic sense, she was able to perceive and target the trace amounts of 'unpurified' crude earth still present in the metal, and used it to bend the metal itself. This was a groundbreaking discovery as metalbending was long regarded as an impossible feat.
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What is the relationship between Aang and Toph? toggle section
Aang and Toph, often referred to as 'Taang' by fans, shared a close friendship throughout the Avatar series. Aang first met Toph at the Earth Rumble VI tournament, and despite her initial refusal, she eventually agreed to join their group and become Aang's earthbending master. However, Toph's direct teaching style clashed with Aang's natural carefree attitude, though they were able overcome these differences. Aang and Toph remained good friends as adults, with Toph continuing to jokingly call Aang by his nickname, "Twinkle Toes".
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How does Toph's blindness affect her earthbending abilities? toggle section
Toph Beifong's blindness actually enhances her earthbending abilities in a unique way. Despite being blind, Toph was trained in earthbending by the original earthbenders, the badgermoles, who are also blind. This training allowed her to develop a unique ability known as seismic sense. With seismic sense, Toph uses earthbending to 'feel' even the smallest vibrations in the earth, such as the march of ants or the presence of trees and buildings. This heightened sense allows her to visualize where people are and their relative distance to her. Toph's unique style of earthbending, combined with her toughened personality, even led her to become famous in underground earthbending tournaments under the alias 'The Blind Bandit'.
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Who are Toph Beifong's parents and how did they treat her? toggle section
Toph Beifong's parents are members of the noble Beifong family in the Earth Kingdom society. They were extremely over-protective of Toph due to her blindness, viewing her as helpless and fragile. As a result, Toph was kept under close guard within her family's house, with very few people even aware of her existence. This treatment led Toph to often run away from home and resent her parents. Despite her impressive earthbending skills, which she developed in secret, her parents continued to restrict her freedom, leading Toph to join Aang and his team on their journeys.
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Early life[]

Toph befriends a badgermole

Toph first learned how to earthbend from badgermoles when she was around five years old.

Toph was born in 88 AG as the only child of the wealthy Beifong family from Gaoling. Born blind, she was sheltered by her parents, who believed her blindness made her fragile and incapable of looking after herself. They went to extreme measures to protect her, including hiding her existence from the rest of the world, which resulted in very few people knowing that the Beifong family even had a daughter. Her parents expected their daughter to be well-mannered and proper due to their noble status in Earth Kingdom society, something with which Toph secretly disagreed, causing her to resent her parents' treatment.[8]

One day when she was around five years old,[21] Toph ran away from home and hid in a cave inhabited by badgermoles. Badgermoles were the first earthbenders and according to Toph, she felt that she and the creatures understood each other as they were both blind. She learned earthbending by imitating their movements.[17] In this way, she learned to "see" through the use of her earthbending, detecting people and other objects through their vibrations, which she sensed through the ground via her bare feet.[8] Her blindness and patience helped her to develop a keen sense of hearing. Toph would continue to sporadically run away from home to find refuge in the Foggy Swamp due to its close proximity to her hometown.[22][23]

Lao Beifong later hired the earthbender teacher, Master Yu, to instruct her. Acting upon the orders of Toph's father, he did not teach her anything other than beginner's moves, unaware that she had already achieved mastery in the art. She became such a formidable bender that she secretly entered underground earthbending tournaments as the Blind Bandit, and was successful to the point where she became the champion of Earth Rumble more than once. After meeting Aang when she was 12 years old, Toph soon ran away in order to teach him earthbending, but also to escape her parents, who never granted her any real freedom.[8]

Spring 100 AG[]

Main article: History of Toph Beifong (Spring 100 AG)
Toph teaches Aang

Toph began to teach Aang earthbending.

After joining Team Avatar, Toph quarreled with Katara over her participation in the team, which, along with the additional stress of being chased by Azula and her team, led to Toph leaving the group. However, after talking to Iroh, Toph changed her mind and rejoined her friends in Tu Zin.[24] After the encounter, Toph began her earthbending lessons with Aang. Although Aang initially struggled with Toph's training methods, he learned to adopt an earthbender-like approach to battle situations and started to bend the element.[25] Soon after, Team Avatar was split up during a Fire Nation ambush. Toph, Aang, and Sokka captured a Fire Nation soldier while searching for Katara, and were eventually reunited with her through the aid of Jiang's pirates.[26]

As Aang continued his bending training with Toph and Katara, the group ventured into the middle of the Si Wong Desert with Professor Zei in hope of learning information to use against the Fire Nation. Although they managed to find Wan Shi Tong's library, Toph chose to stay outside, as she could not read. When the structure began to sink, Toph chose to hold up the library even as Si Wong tribesmen arrived on the scene and kidnapped Appa.[27] After making their way out of the desert, Team Avatar's new goal was to inform the Earth King about an eclipse in the Fire Nation that Sokka had discovered in the library.[28] The team chose to make their way to Ba Sing Se via the dangerous Serpent's Pass, which the group successfully managed to do in spite of numerous setbacks.[3]

Although they arrived at the walls of the capital, Toph and the team first helped to thwart an invasion plan by destroying the Fire Nation drill.[29] The group found it difficult to meet with King Kuei once settling in the city, but Toph helped the rest of the team sneak into a party at the palace, where they were discovered and dismissed by Long Feng.[4] As the team continued their search for Appa and waited to meet with the government, they managed to rest for a while, though eventually found that Appa was in the clutches of the Dai Li.[30][31] Team Avatar managed to subdue the Dai Li and convinced the Earth King to regain power and imprison Long Feng, beginning their plans to invade the Fire Nation with the help of the Council of Five. With things looking better for the team, Toph received a letter claiming that her mother was in the city and that she finally understood her daughter, but when going to meet her, Toph was kidnapped by Xin Fu and Master Yu, who began to take her back to Gaoling in a metal cage pulled by an ostrich horse-drawn cart.[2]

Discovering metalbending

Toph discovered metalbending while trapped in a cage.

After some time in her cage, Toph began to bash her hands against the metal walls using seismic sense. The vibrations allowed her to see the fragments of earth within metal. Reaching out for the fragments and widening her stance, Toph bent metal for the first time in the history of earthbending. After freeing herself from the cage, she trapped Xin Fu and Yu inside and hurried back to Ba Sing Se on a wave of earth, until she was picked up by Aang and Sokka on Appa.[1][32] Returning to the palace, Toph and the group were caught off-guard by Azula and her team, who had masqueraded as Kyoshi Warriors and begun to orchestrate a palace coup with the aid of the Dai Li. Toph easily broke herself, Sokka and King Kuei free from imprisonment with metalbending, but escaped Ba Sing Se with a grievously wounded Aang on Appa after the city fell to the Fire Nation.[32]

Summer 100 AG[]

Main article: History of Toph Beifong (Summer 100 AG)

After fleeing Ba Sing Se, Team Avatar commandeered a Fire Nation ship, sailing toward the Fire Nation as Aang slumbered. Shortly after he awoke, they met another Fire Nation ship, and Toph aided in the ensuing battle with her metalbending.[33] Team Avatar split from their allies and went undercover as Fire Nation citizens in order to prepare for the invasion.[34] Eventually, the team began to be pursued by a mysterious assassin with the ability to combustionbend.[35]

Toph scamming

Toph used her bending abilities to scam people during Team Avatar's stay in Fire Fountain City.

As the team's resources began to run low, Toph decided to earn money for the group by cheating at carnival games in Fire Fountain City using earthbending and metalbending. Toph began to earn a reputation as a scam artist called "The Runaway." This caused a rift to grow between Toph and Katara again, but the two soon made up, with Katara proposing that they run an even bigger scam by turning in Toph, collecting the bounty, and her metalbending herself out of jail. However, this was a trap set by Combustion Man and both of them were imprisoned. Katara freed the pair from the prison by bending her own sweat to cut the wooden cell, and the group fled the city after stunning Combustion Man. Toph also admitted her guilt about her parents and sent a message to them using Hawky.[5]

When the Day of Black Sun arrived, Toph served as an earthbending soldier during the invasion. Toph battled against Fire Nation soldiers in the harbor until Aang told them that Caldera City was abandoned.[36][37] Toph sensed an underground bunker beneath the capital and searched for the Fire Lord with Aang and Sokka, but the group only found Azula, who taunted Sokka. With the eclipse having passed, the invasion force retreated, with Team Avatar and their younger allies heading to the Western Air Temple.[37][38]

Soon after settling at the temple, Toph sensed that Zuko had arrived. The prince told them that he had changed and now wished to teach Aang firebending. All but Toph rejected him, as she could sense his sincerity with her truth-seeing. When Toph approached Zuko at his camp alone, he accidentally burned her feet, and she spent the rest of the night traveling back to the temple. Though the group seemed to be further turned against Zuko, they welcomed him to the team after he proved himself by helping to kill Combustion Man.[38] Toph provided useful advice to Aang and Zuko in trying to find the dragons to learn firebending, though she along with the rest of the group fled the temple after it was attacked by Azula following Hakoda and Suki's rescue from the Boiling Rock.[17][39][40]

Toph in metal armor

Toph assaulted a Fire Nation airship during Sozin's Comet using advanced metalbending abilities.

The group settled on Ember Island following the attack, where Toph expressed admiration of a bizarre portrayal of herself in a play retelling their adventures.[41] However, the group's anticipated chance to recuperate was interrupted when Zuko informed them of the necessity to attack the Fire Nation before it had a chance to burn the Earth Kingdom to ash during Sozin's Comet. Toph helped the team prepare for the assault on Ozai in a mock battle where she played the Fire Lord, but the preparations were halted when Aang mysteriously disappeared the following night.[7] Unable to find Aang, the group traveled to the Earth Kingdom so June could locate the Avatar, but to no avail. Instead, June brought the group to Iroh and the rest of the Order of the White Lotus. As part of the battle plans, Toph, Sokka, and Suki went to intercept the Fire Nation fleet of airships.[42] Toph propelled them all aboard the ships with earthbending just as they took off, and promptly used metalbending to incapacitate the soldiers and captain. Sokka steered their ship into the others, but their own ship began to break apart and they were separated from Suki.[43] Just as Toph and Sokka were about to fall from the ship, they were saved by Suki who was piloting another. As the comet departed, the group met up with Aang, who had stripped Ozai of his bending powers, congratulating him and taunting the former Fire Lord. After Zuko's coronation, Toph joined the rest of their team and their allies at the Jasmine Dragon in Ba Sing Se, where they celebrated their hard-won victory.[44]

100 - 102 AG[]

Main article: History of Toph Beifong (100 AG - 102 AG)
Toph and Suki fighting at Yu Dao

Toph and Suki fought Fire Nation troops during the battle for Yu Dao.

Following the war's conclusion, Toph began to notice that her bracelet would shiver slightly when others around her got emotional. Toph speculated that these people were potential metalbenders, and founded a metalbending academy in Yu Dao, with her first three students being Penga, The Dark One, and Ho Tun.[45][46] Toph welcomed the other members of Team Avatar to the city while its political status was disputed during the Harmony Restoration Movement. As a teacher, Toph felt the effects of the conflict when Master Kunyo claimed ownership of the academy, as it had once been his firebending dojo. On the day of the battle for Yu Dao, Toph intended to surrender, but changed her mind when her students finally displayed tenacity, and began to metalbend for the first time. Toph participated in the battle by bending underground slides beneath tanks and disabled the vehicles.[47] After peace was made in Yu Dao, many more students enroled at the academy, and she declined an invitation to come to the Fire Nation with the rest of Team Avatar due to her workload.[48]

Toph holding back the cave-in

Toph saved everyone still trapped in the collapsed mine with her metalbending skills.

Toph attended a banquet in celebration of Yu Dao's new coalition government roughly one year later. She unenthusiastically joined Aang on a trip to the Yue Bay area, where Team Avatar and the Air Acolytes recreating Yangchen's Festival. Toph spurned many of the traditions, as they reminded her of her strict upbringing. When the group reached an industrial town, Toph quickly befriended a young industrialist, Satoru. Though Aang was disheartened to see the polluted environment, Toph opined that the Earthen Fire Refinery was a symbol of international cooperation, similar to Yu Dao. However, Toph was shocked to find that her father was one of the refinery's co-owners.[49] Lao did not admit that Toph was his daughter, and ordered the Rough Rhinos to escort her off the premises, angering Toph, who wished to speak with her father. Toph managed to gain access to the factory grounds, where Lao disavowed with kinship with Toph, and did not react to any of her accomplishments. When Sokka alerted them of the unstable iron mine, Toph stopped the surroundings from crushing her, Katara, and her father and his co-workers.[50] Toph strained herself by keeping up the debris for an unbearably long amount of time, until her students and Aang arrived to help. After being freed from the mine, Toph collapsed in her father's arms. After she learned that Aang intended on destroying the factory, Toph tried to dissuade him, telling him that he was doing so for no reason, but her efforts were cut short by the appearance of General Old Iron. After Aang battled the spirit, Toph thanked him for saving her students and choosing not to destroy the refinery. Her relationship with her father was slowly being mended, and three months later, she helped oversee Satoru's work in the refinery.[51]

Toph is bored

Toph expressed her boredom at her academy due to the monotonous routine.

After the growth of Earthen Fire Industries, the academy had enough funding to build new facilities, and Toph's first three students were skilled enough to teach beginner's classes. In spite of her success, Toph began to grow bored of the monotony of daily life. After Sokka and Suki arrived to take her to see Chong and Trustfully in Love, Toph sought out an underground bending battle in an abandoned warehouse in Yu Dao. She discovered a lavabender named Sun, and helped support the warehouse after it was damaged by his lava. Toph invited Sun to join the academy and teach him how to master his element, and found her passion for teaching once again.[6]

Team Beifong help with the Southern Reconstruction Project

Toph and her students helped with the Southern Reconstruction Project.

Toph was later sent to the Southern Water Tribe as a representative of Earthen Fire Industries to aid in the Southern Reconstruction Project, though soon found herself in the midst of conflict once more when Gilak and his soldiers attacked a festival, with Toph and Sokka battling the Southern nationalists.[52] The next morning, Toph and her initial three students began work on Maliq and Malina's factory. During an international conference at Hakoda's office, Earth King Kuei was kidnapped by the Southern nationalists. Toph participated in the skirmish at the Bridge of No Return, wearing heavy armor to counter Thod's chi-blocking. After the fight, Toph and the rest of Team Avatar enjoyed a meal at Kanna and Pakku's house.[53]

Toph proposes taking Liling's bending away

Toph proposed that Aang take Liling's bending away.

Later, Team Avatar made their way to Yu Dao, but Toph convinced Aang to stop by Earthen Fire Industries, so that she could meet with her father. To their surprise, the small town around the refinery had grown into a small city called Cranefish Town. They soon found that the fast-growing city was suffering from bending gangs, and an increasing social divide between benders and nonbenders. The same problem had occurred at the factory, as several bender workers were let go to keep costs down.[54] After an explosion at the factory, Toph began to suspect Councilwoman Liling, having heard the footsteps of her daughters, Ru and Yaling. Toph offered to teach Yaling metalbending, but her true goal was to coax her into revealing more information. Through Yaling, Toph gained the password to a bender supremacist rally, where she confronted and attempted to arrest Liling. Liling was captured after a skirmish with Team Avatar, and Toph proposed that Aang take her bending away, to the shock of the others. After Liling managed to escape, Toph battled her bender supremacist forces. Though Yaling managed to knock Toph to the ground, Sokka managed to defeat her. Three days later, Toph walked through the city, and along with the rest of Team Avatar, resolved to stay in Cranefish Town and help it prosper into a city later known as Republic City.[55]

Working as Chief of Police[]

Older Toph Beifong

Toph became Chief of Police in Republic City.

After the formation of Republic City, Toph was placed at the head of its law enforcement and became the city's first Chief of Police.[18] Her metalbending knowledge allowed her to found an elite team, the Metalbending Police Force, to aid her in her duties.

Sometime before 120 AG, Toph met Kanto, with whom she had a daughter, Lin. The relationship did not work out, however, and six years later, she had another daughter, Suyin, with another man, though she ended up raising them as a single parent. Both daughters inherited her earthbending abilities and became masters in their own right. Seeking to give them a different childhood than the one she had, Toph gave her daughters the freedom to find their own path. Lin would later follow in her footsteps as the Chief of Police, while Suyin became a rebel, much like her mother when she was young. Toph told her daughters she considered them a blessing; though Lin thought she was lying.[19] In 124 AG, Toph commissioned a friend to illustrate her first encounter with Aang during Earth Rumble VI to include in a book the latter was assembling for his son, Tenzin.[56]

In 128 AG, at age forty, Toph was on her way to arrest a man named Yakone for being a practitioner of the illegal art of bloodbending and using it to terrorize Republic City. Although mildly annoyed that Avatar Aang asked to accompany her, she let him join her, although she could not resist calling him by her childhood nickname for him, "Twinkle Toes", much to his annoyance.

Yakone bloodbending Toph

Chief Toph was bloodbent by Yakone to unlock his chains.

Having apprehended Yakone at Kwong's Cuisine, she brought him to be tried before the United Republic Council. However, right after he was found guilty of his crimes, Yakone used his bloodbending abilities to incapacitate Sokka. Coming to the aid of her friend, Toph was immobilized by the illegal bending art as well and was forced to use her keys to free Yakone of his handcuffs before being harshly tossed aside and incapacitated.[57]

In the mid 130s AG, Tenzin was brought to her office with a pair of vandals that the police had arrested for fighting one another at the docks. Tenzin explained that the criminals had been defacing airbending gates with graffiti, but Toph explained that he shouldn't have dealt vigilante justice, but should have reported the crime instead. When Aang arrived to collect Tenzin, she told him she was letting him off with a warning, while the two vandals would spend the night in jail. Aang offered to deal with the criminals in the style of the Air Nomads, as the only damaged property was in his jurisdiction on Air Temple Island. Toph begrudgingly accepted, though rhetorically asked why Aang liked undermining her authority, which he joked was part of their complicated friendship.[58]

In 142 AG,[59] after Lin caught Suyin trying to flee from an arrest for theft, the sisters were brought into Toph's office. Knowing the scandal that would erupt from the Chief of Police having a daughter in prison, as well as wanting to protect her, Toph destroyed Suyin's police report and sent her to live with her parents. She retired from the police force a year later. At the same time, Suyin would later travel the world, eventually building a metal city, Zaofu. Toph and Suyin later reconciled, though Lin refused to participate.[14] Toph would visit Suyin in Zaofu from time to time, regaling her granddaughter, Opal, with stories about Lin, until she left to travel around the world in search of enlightenment. According to Aiwei, she was not seen since.[19]

174 AG[]

Main article: History of Toph Beifong (174 AG)
Toph helping Korra

Toph helped Korra to realize that she needed to let go of her fear of her past enemies if she wanted to be ready to face future threats.

After many years living in the Foggy Swamp, Toph found Korra passed out in the mud. She brought Korra back to her home, introducing herself as a good friend of Korra's previous life, to the astonishment of the Avatar.[20] Toph helped Korra recover from her weakened physical state, and when the pair sparred, Toph easily won. Toph was the first person to notice that Korra still had remnants of mercury in her body. Although she tried to extract the poison from Korra, the Avatar resisted Toph's bending and refused to relax. Growing frustrated, Toph told Korra that she would have to get the metal out of her body herself.[60] Days later, the earthbender sent Korra to fetch some mushrooms for her, hoping that the swamp would give her visions. When Korra returned, explaining that she had seen her old enemies, Toph told her that the swamp wanted her to learn from them, and explained how all of her previous adversaries had noble intentions, but the problem was that they had been out of balance. After Korra still seemed reluctant to face her fears, Toph frustratedly guided Korra to the banyan-grove tree, explaining that their roots were connected to the entire swamp. Korra successfully tapped into the connection of the swamp and received a vision of Jinora, Ikki, and Meelo coming for her, with Toph greeting Aang's grandchildren after they arrived. All of them returned to Toph's home, and she instructed Korra to clear her mind and find the metal. Guiding Korra through a painful vision, Toph saw the Avatar successfully bend the residual mercury out of her system and complimented her on the achievement. After finally allowing Korra to embrace her, she saw off the Avatar and Tenzin's children, glad to live in peace and quiet once again.[61]

Toph and Lin reconciling

Both apologizing for their mistakes, Toph and Lin reconciled.

Toph later learned of Suyin and most of her immediate family being imprisoned following the Fall of Zaofu via the vines in the swamp, and traveled to the city to help rescue them. Though Suyin had been moved to a secure location, she made herself known to Lin, Opal, and Bolin, who had come with the same intentions. The team traveled to a nearby factory and reeducation facility in hopes of rescuing the family, with Lin acting extremely abrasive on the way. After discovering the facility, the group camped for the night, with a confrontation erupting between mother and daughter when Toph began to talk about Lin's father for the first time in her daughter's life. The following day, Toph, Lin, and Bolin tunneled down to the cavern where Suyin's family was being held during a demonstration of Kuvira's spirit energy cannon. Toph and Bolin catapulted Lin on top of the family's wooden cage, and swung them toward Bolin with her metal cable. Although the family had been saved, Baatar's screams alerted the guards of their presence. Toph helped fight off the Earth Empire soldiers, and insulted Kuvira before escaping to safety on Juicy. The family parted in a bamboo forest, with Toph apologizing for the problems in Lin and Suyin's upbringing and her leaving on much better terms with her eldest daughter. She declined Opal's request to return to Republic City, explaining that her fighting days were over and that it was time for the next generation.[62]

Three months after Kuvira's surrender, Toph was visited by Korra and Earth King Wu, who asked her to run as governor of the State of Gaoling in order to oppose Commander Guan of the Earth Empire, who threatened to jeopardize the democratic movement. Toph initially refused, but was convinced to join when Wu explained his visions of his late great-aunt, urging her to step outside her comfort zone. She traveled to Gaoling as a candidate, though recognized that the populace had largely been brainwashed. As the Earth Empire tried to apprehend the group, Toph and the others escaped on a Metal Clan airship that a temporarily released Kuvira had radioed from Zaofu, battling the soldiers for as long as it took to retrieve Asami.[15] At Zaofu, Toph learned that she had lost the election, as King Wu had been brainwashed into moving up the election date, with the Earth Empire threatening to resurface. After Kuvira stole a plane and headed to Zaofu, Toph joined Korra and her friends in flying to Gaoling on Juicy, engaging in battle with Guan's forces. After the situation was resolved, the Earth King tried to convince Toph to run in the next election, but she refused, explaining that she would return to the swamp, as she deemed the predators there to be more honest than politicians.[63]

Although Toph liked to stay in the swamp, she still made occasional visits to Republic City in order to spend more time with Opal. This also meant that she was able to reunite with Katara, and Toph and Katara brought their families to the beach with Korra, Asami, and Bolin. Toph and Katara began to reminisce about their long history of pranking each other, and had fun starting a prank war between everyone at the beach.[64]


Toph was hailed as a hero in Republic City following her retirement and a metal statue of her in her police uniform was placed in a niche above the main entrance of the police headquarters. Among her many accomplishments, including introducing metalbending to the world, both as a prodigy and as a teacher, she founded Republic City's metalbending police unit and won them a reputation for professionalism and training the equal of any across the four nation.[65] Several statues of Toph were also built in Zaofu in honor of her discovery of metalbending.[14]


Toph annoyed

Toph was comfortable with letting those around her know when she was displeased.

Due to her blindness, Toph was often pampered by her overprotective parents. Her freedom was limited to the point where her own existence was not known to most people in her hometown, much to her chagrin, thus straining her relationship with her parents. As a result, she greatly craved to interact with the rest of the world, albeit independently. It was not until she learned earthbending from the badgermoles that her confidence tremendously increased. As a result, she secretly participated in Earth Rumble tournaments without her parent's knowledge.[8]

Upon joining Team Avatar, Toph brought a completely new personality to the group. Unlike the nurturing Katara, flighty Aang, or gruff but goofy Sokka, Toph was fiercely independent, sarcastic, direct, stubborn, and confrontational.[24] She appeared to have the same carefree and adventurous personality as Aang and was very tomboyish in the way she acted[24] and dressed,[30] in contrast to the delicate doll her parents saw her as. Toph loved battling and took great pride in her earthbending skills. She appeared eager to prove that she was as strong as anyone who could see and once claimed that she was "the greatest earthbender in the world".[1] This attitude was most prominently shown when she was teaching Aang earthbending, as she taught him to face his enemies and problems head-on.

Toph's eagerness to prove that she could be independent led to some initial difficulties with Aang and his friends. Toph insisted that she could "carry her own weight" and often mistook a simple friendly gesture as an act of pity for her blindness. Her encounter with Iroh, however, taught her that Aang, Katara, and Sokka cared for her because they were friends, not because her blindness made them feel obligated to do so.[24]

Toph was often brutally honest when criticizing others, especially her friends. She was vocal about her opinions on others regardless of status (the Avatar, Aang) or age (Iroh).[24] Her occasional attitude or aloofness is likely related to her being the only child of one of the richest families in the Earth Kingdom. Due to her time as a competitor and champion of earthbending tournaments, she was an expert in verbally taunting and insulting her opponents and, on occasion, her friends, particularly Sokka. She revealed to Katara that, being unable to see what she looks like, she did not feel the need to fuss over her appearance.[30] However, despite her many quirks, Toph showed that she was a quick learner,[7] and her courage and loyalty to her new friends seemed very stable.

Toph and Katara seemed to be polar opposites; while Katara was kind, welcoming and supportive, Toph was rough, unyielding and steadfast. These differences in personality extended to the way both girls taught Aang; however, Toph eventually showed a bit of compromise in order to help Aang through his initial difficulty with earthbending.[25] Despite occasional clashes or spats,[5] Toph and Katara generally got along.

Toph spits

While raised in a wealthy and prominent Earth Kingdom family, Toph deliberately lacked manners as a form of rebellion.

One of Toph's most profound traits involved personal hygiene. She was accustomed to lying on the ground and walking everywhere barefoot leaving her soles soiled, a habit common among the earthbenders. Also, she had been seen belching loudly, picking her nose or toes,[66] spitting, and was usually covered in dirt or, as she called it, "a healthy coating of earth".[30]

Toph was well-educated in the manners and bearings of high society but deliberately chose to ignore them. However, she made an exception when the group needed to go to an exclusive party to see the Earth King in order to give news of the solar eclipse. To this end, she and Katara dressed and acted formally to evade suspicion.[4]

Toph did not let her blindness hurt her self-confidence. She had high self-esteem in regard to many of her abilities and was more than determined to show that she would not let her blindness deter her from living freely and fighting like everyone else. However, sometimes this acted as a ruse to hide personal insecurities. After getting a makeover with Katara in Ba Sing Se, some residents of the city mocked Toph for it (who retaliated with a prank). She told Katara that "one of the good things about being blind [was] that [she did] not have to waste [her] time worrying about appearances" and was not looking for anyone's approval. Katara voiced that it was something she admired in Toph but could tell that she had been hurt by the insult and added that though it did not matter, she was in fact pretty, which visibly cheered up the blind girl.[30]

Toph's blindness

A laid-back individual, Toph is fine with her blindness.

An ongoing joke concerning Toph's blindness was her lack of ability to discern anything that had been written or drawn. In Ba Sing Se, Toph became angry when Sokka suggested that she needed help distributing fliers. She angrily slapped up a poster herself, only to inadvertently place it backward and say, "It's upside-down, isn't it?" Also, she sarcastically complimented Sokka on his drawings of Appa despite the obvious fact that she could not see them.[31] Later, in the Fire Nation, after being presented with the same wanted poster twice, Toph vocally expressed her annoyance with the constant oversight.[5] Toph was comfortable enough, however, with the group's absent-mindedness on the subject of her blindness to even joke about it herself at times. For example, while searching for Wan Shi Tong's Library, Toph, while flying on Appa, claimed that she saw it, before remarking, "That's what it'll sound like when one of you spots it", and waving a hand in front of her eyes with a nonchalant smile.[27]

While hijacking an airship, Toph mistook Sokka's comment about taking the wheel, thinking he was referring to her. By the smile on her face, it was pretty clear that she was gleeful about getting another chance to correct him. However, it turned out that Sokka was talking to Suki, and Toph managed to subsequently cover up her original intention pretty well.[43] At the reunion in the Jasmine Dragon after the passing of Sozin's Comet, she made a joke about Sokka's drawing, saying that she thought everyone looked perfect.[44]

Because of the restrictions placed upon her by her parents and the fact that their servants waited upon her hand-and-foot lest she hurt herself, Toph often seemed to want to take on the responsibilities and obtain the freedoms of adulthood. This caused problems for herself and her friends, most notably during their visit to Fire Fountain City, as she did not always take into account how this might endanger her or aggravate others. No matter how she acted, though, others realized that she was still a vulnerable child underneath everything else she pretended to be.[5]

When she went on to teach her unique talent of metalbending, she realized how her dogged pursuit of her own dreams of becoming the world's first metalbending teacher disrespected who her students were. She found parallels between how she was treating them as people by restricting them simply so they could meet her vision of them with how her parents had treated her back when she still lived with them. She subsequently decided to give up her metalbending academy so that she would not use it as an outlet for the pain she felt from her relationship with her parents onto her students. Luckily for her, her students happened to have overheard her conversation with Sokka about this subject, and responded to it by overcoming the limits the rest of the world saw as defining them in an attempt to live up to the vision Toph had had for them, and were finally able to metalbend.[46]

Due to her troubled past with her parents, Toph also exhibited a modernist attitude, believing that change is the key to progress.[49]

As a mother, Toph found herself to be a direct opposite of her parents, letting her daughters be free to find their own way, though Suyin claimed that Toph was not pleased with the paths either of her daughters had chosen. She later admitted to her children that, while she knew she had not been the best parent, she was proud of the women they had become.[62]

In old age, Toph retained her abrasive, no-nonsense personality, being harshly critical of Korra's abilities and enjoying defeating her in combat. However, she had adopted a more cynical mindset about the impact actions make on their surroundings; she had realized that no matter how hard she tried, crime and injustice would never give up.[60]

Despite her tough exterior, Toph is not above warming up during intimate moments, as evidenced when she joined in group hugs with Team Avatar and held hands with Aang at the prospect of friendships lasting more than one lifetime.[67] Although she had become more cynical in old age, she would allow herself to show affection when she deemed the other person worthy, as evidenced when she let Korra hug her after earning her respect[61] and did not berate or try to stop Opal's embrace when they met again after several years of separation.[62] She even allowed Wu to hug her after she gathered the King was just an affectionate person.[15]



Earth column

When Toph joined Team Avatar, her earthbending capabilities made it obvious that she would be a promising asset for the team.

Toph's proclamation of being the most powerful earthbender in the world is supported by her talented displays of earthbending from a young age.[1] Although blind, Toph's training in earthbending under the original earthbenders, the badgermoles, allowed her to use their unique ability of seismic sense: she used earthbending to "feel" even the most minute vibrations in the earth, including the march of ants several meters away and the presence of trees and buildings.[8] Through this heightened seismic sense, Toph could visualize where people were, their relative distance to her, and their physical build, but was unable to visualize faces.[30] This sense provided her with a distinct advantage when facing other earthbenders in combat because she could predict attacks as they began and quickly react.[8] Her knowledge of the art also allowed her to teach it to others like Aang, and later her daughters, Lin and Suyin. Her speed and agility were also greatly beneficial in combat.

Her earthbending style was unique and thus unpredictable, as her training was unconventional and more deeply rooted in the nature of earthbending rather than just pure fighting. This style greatly differentiated from the rigid training and fighting style that earthbenders like the Dai Li implemented. Toph's style tended to be proven to be superior to the Dai Li, as she was able to take on a number of them and defend her friends at the same time.[31] This is likely because while the Dai Li just manipulated the earth, Toph had established a tremendously deep connection to it at the very outset of her self-tutelage in earthbending (although both styles have an over-dependence on something i.e. the Dai Li and their earth gloves and Toph and her feet).

However, because Toph was dependent on vibrations in the earth, she was vulnerable to air-based attacks, as shown in her fight with Aang in Earth Rumble VI. Later, Toph was completely surprised by Sokka dropping a large belt on her head.[8] Her success rate in intercepting non-earth projectiles was also tied to her sensing of vibrations, being able to feel an opponent's movement when they jump off the ground, and proceeding accordingly. By her own admission, she could not aim properly at opponents while they were airborne.[28] Despite this, her connection with earthbending is seemingly good enough that she is able to feel the earth even if it is not connected to the ground.[68]

Toph's seismic sense

Toph uses her seismic sense to feel her surroundings and anticipate the motions and attacks of her enemy.

Terrain that impaired Toph's ability to sense vibrations also hindered her abilities, as shown when Toph had some difficulty with sand, describing the vibrations in the earth as "fuzzy". She was able to compress sand into solid rock to gain some temporary footing, but she was still unable to accurately aim attacks under those conditions.[28] However, she seemed to have ultimately gained some mastery of sandbending, as she mentioned working on it during Team Avatar's beach party and was able to create a miniature version of the upper ring of Ba Sing Se in rich detail. Apparently, her ability to sense vibrations had improved, which may be how she was able to produce the very fine details of the city and did not show the same helplessness she had shown when previously walking on sand when the gang stepped onto the beach.[7] By 174 AG, Toph attained a state of enlightenment similar to Huu, being able to use the connections of the swamp she lived in with her seismic sense to survey the world and observe everyone, being able to "see" areas as far as Zaofu and Republic City.[61][60]

Toph also expressed an aversion for flying[2] and submarine travel,[36] as she could not sense her surroundings without her feet on solid ground. Also, as a result of her closeness or affinity with earth, Toph could rest or sleep comfortably on solid rock without any sleeping bag or blanket and could walk on any kind of terrain in bare feet, a standard trait for earthbenders. Toph relied on direct contact between her feet and the ground for "sight"[34] as well as for her earthbending. Toph was very reluctant to allow anyone else to touch her feet,[30] probably because insensitive handling there would make her deaf to other vibrations and thereby render her helpless (and because they were far more sensitive than other people's feet).

Despite her substantial prowess on land, Toph did not perform well in water and on ice. She seemed incapable of seeing where she was going on ice, was not able to swim,[3] and became nauseous when she needed to travel by submarine in the invasion of the Fire Nation.[36]

In Ba Sing Se, Toph demonstrated an ability to sense even slight vibrations, informing a man they met that she could feel him shaking.[4] Toph was also able to sense when a person was lying by the vibrations of his/her heartbeat and breathing patterns.[31] However, Toph's ability to detect lies was not absolute, as Azula demonstrated when she was easily able to lie without even the slightest physical reaction.[37] However, very few people have the ability to lie while manipulating their breathing and pulse in this way.

Toph's earthbending style was based on Chu Gar Southern Praying Mantis, which is a style that is apparently unique to her; the style of earthbending used by other earthbenders is rooted in the Hung Gar style of Kung Fu. She was the only bender known to use a style based on a different root martial art than the standard for their bending art. This may be because she was self-taught rather than trained in the traditional earthbending form. Toph came to develop her unique style by observing the movements of the also blind earthbending badgermoles that could be found in the caves around her hometown.[17] By 174 AG, Toph's fighting style evolved to incorporate more fluid and evasive maneuvers, bending mud more akin to waterbending.[61]


Toph sandbending

Toph demonstrated to Aang her practice of sandbending.

Because sand is loose and ultimately always changing with the winds of the desert, Toph found it hard to navigate through and control. To compensate somewhat, she could condense the sand together to give her a better footing. However, when she tried to attack one of the sandbenders with a small wave of sand during their ambush of her and Appa, she missed, her lack of precision on the sand aggravated by her hurry to save both Appa and the others.

After the events in the Si Wong Desert had shown her inability to see effectively while walking on sand,[28] Toph practiced her sandbending, eventually achieving a mastery over it that allowed her to create an extremely detailed sand version of Ba Sing Se during her time relaxing at Ember Island.[7]


Main article: Metalbending
Toph in metal armor

A fluid earthbending master, Toph mastered metalbending to the level she could use it as systematically as earth itself.

Toph discovered the ability to bend metal in the spring of 100 AG. Metal is derived from ore, which is found in the earth. Guru Pathik explained to Aang that "metal is just a part of earth that has been purified and refined". Because of Toph's ability to feel the vibrations in earth, she was able to locate the impurities (the small fragments of earth) still found in most metals and manipulate them to "bend" the metal portion. By acquiring these metalbending abilities, Toph had shown herself to be one of the most powerful and ingenious earthbenders in the world, being the only known earthbender to ever bend metal during the Hundred Year War, a feat that even the Avatar was unable to perform since the origin of earthbending.[1]

When Sokka finished his training as a swordmaster, he gave Toph a small piece of meteorite, which, being composed of earth and metal, she could easily mold into a myriad of shapes,[66] subsequently transforming it into an arm bracelet which she would wear.

She originally used an underdeveloped form of metalbending and usually needed to have direct contact with the element to manipulate it at all, let alone skillfully. However, she continued to practice her metalbending and started to display a dexterous control over metal.

In Wulong Forest, when she was breaking into a Fire Nation airship, it was shown that her metalbending had improved greatly, as she created metal armor and manipulated the metallic structure of the room with far more ease than before, moving metal more fluidly. She was also able to crawl along the metal ceiling while completely covered in metal. Additionally, Toph could metalbend outside of her metal armor, even though she was already bending the armor in the first place.[43]

A year later, Toph could bend metal that she was not in contact with, like when she demonstrated her ability to bend metal to Kunyo, who was trying to take over the metalbending school, by bending a metal weapon around his head. She later stated that as long as someone could see the metal, she could bend it, which she demonstrated when metalbending screws and bolts to unscrew the wheels of Fire Nation tanks.

Toph later taught this self-invented technique to many earthbenders, including her daughters. After the Hundred Year War, Toph further refined metalbending to the point of being able to start and lead a capable law enforcement group of metalbending police officers. Following Toph's retirement, Lin Beifong became the new Chief of Police, demonstrating her prodigious metalbending and leadership abilities. Despite all of her accomplishments in the development of metalbending, Toph never succeeded in bending pure metals such as platinum.[69] She was, however, able to sense even trace amounts of metal, unlike her daughters.[60] Her proficiency in metalbending was such that she could tear a hole in a metal wall and restore it to its previous state without a trace of it ever having been bent.[62]

Other skills[]

Toph as Melon Lord

Toph pretended to be the Melon Lord.

Despite her lack of actual sight, her remaining senses, primarily her sense of touch and hearing, were especially acute, allowing her to use her seismic sense to remarkable levels. With the latter sense, she once claimed herself that she "never [forgot] a voice". This was shown when the gang traveled through the Si Wong Desert, where they were confronted by a group of sandbenders and she almost immediately recognized one as one of the sandbenders that kidnapped Appa the day before.[28] Later in the summer, while the gang was on a captured Fire Nation ship, Hakoda and Bato seemingly deceived the captain of another ship, but the captain realized the ship as a captured one. Toph overheard the captain whispering to his troops to sink the ship and attacked.[33] While visiting a creepy village in the Fire Nation, Toph heard people screaming all the way from atop a mountain and everyone later deduced that that was where several prisoners were being held.[70]

Toph also showed a decent amount of artistic talent, as she was able to create a realistic replica of the city of Ba Sing Se with sandbending while Team Avatar stayed at Ember Island, contrasting with Sokka's poor sculpting abilities when he created a sand sculpture of Suki. Later in a training exercise involving all of the members of the team, she was able to create earthbending mannequins while acting as the "Melon Lord"[7] (who was, in reality, an inanimate mannequin made to resemble the Fire Lord, supported by a small earth column and clothed in Fire Nation robes).

As befits one who has mastered the use of neutral jing by waiting and listening to the earth, Toph had a great sense of hearing, able to clearly hear the most subtle of whispering from considerable distances and could recognize people by the sound of their voices. In the Si Wong Desert, Toph recognized the sandbender who stole Appa, remarking as she did so that she never forgets a voice.[28] She likewise has very fine memory, able to accurately remember and distinguish the physical form of people as she quickly determined one of the Kyoshi Warriors was actually Ty Lee in disguise.[32]

She also seemed to enjoy acting and showed a decent amount of talent at it, getting more into character as the "Melon Lord" than was necessary for Team Avatar's training purposes,[7] rebuffing Katara for acting out of character when Aang distracted her from their act of being noblewomen (as was made necessary for entry into the Earth King's party[4]), and reveling in the "stage name" given to her as "The Runaway".[5] This appreciation for "getting into character" as an actor was likely behind her greater ability to enjoy the The Boy in the Iceberg play relative to the rest of Team Avatar.[41]

She also displayed a remarkable amount of agility for one who preferred to have her feet planted on the ground at all times. In Team Avatar's first battle with Combustion Man, she rolled, pushed herself off of the ground with one hand and flipped over in the air to regain her balance after his first shot. She positioned herself in an earthbending stance in order to fight back against her attacker as quickly as possible.[35] Toph apparently also had a good enough sense of balance and strong enough neck muscles to carry a basket full of groceries on her head.[70]


Main article: Toph Beifong's relationships


Main article: Beifong family
Baatar Jr.


Avatar: The Last Airbender

Book Two: Earth (土)

Book Three: Fire (火)

Avatar comics

Book Two: Earth (土)
Book Three: Fire (火)
Other comics

Graphic novels

The Legend of Korra

Book One: Air (气)

Book Three: Change (易)

Book Four: Balance (平衡)

Avatar comics

Graphic novels

Avatar Legends: The Roleplaying Game

Avatar games

Avatar books


  • Toph's name is usually written as 北方拓芙.[2][3] Her given name means "expanding lotus", while her surname means "northern". On one other occasion, her given name was written as 托夫,[30] which is the phonetic transcription based on the official guide for foreign names. Toph can also be seen as a sort of pun on the words "tough"[41] and "toff", a British slang word meaning "upper-class".
  • Toph was the only blind person shown in either series.
    • Toph was the first known person to be born with a disability, the second being Ming-Hua.
  • In The Promise trilogy, Toph represents the vice of rage, over which she is able to prevail due to her time at her metalbending academy.[71]
  • Due to her blindness, Toph had no reading or writing skills. That being said, she apparently had some math skills, as seen when she was counting money.[5]
  • A recurring joke was that other characters tended to forget Toph was blind, only for her to sarcastically remind them that she was.[27][31]
  • Though Toph could "see" where everyone was by using vibrations from the ground, she tended to not face them while talking, instead staring off into space or in a different direction.
  • Coincidentally, Toph's earthbending style is rumored to have been created by a blind woman.[72]
  • Toph can extend her seismic sense to sand, albeit with reduced accuracy,[28] metal, and even the meteorite that Sokka fashioned his "space sword" from, which she used as a bracelet and described as "space earth";[66] it does not, however, transfer to non-earthen solids such as ice.[3]
  • Toph could tell if people were lying as there are physical reactions in the body that she could sense through vibrations.[31] Azula and Old Sweepy were the only known characters that were able to foil this.[37]
  • Toph apparently used her hands as sense organs to supplement the vibrations she was able to feel through her feet, as she was often seen doing this to further investigate vibrations she had already felt by other means. This was probably a product of her learning earthbending by crawling on all fours like badgermoles.[17] She was also seen using this ability before entering Old Ba Sing Se.[32] Furthermore, when Zuko accidentally burned her feet, she crawled on her hands and knees when trying to get away from his camp, probably in an effort to retain some sort of sense of her surroundings.[38]
  • After making her escape and inventing metalbending, Toph made the claim that she was the greatest earthbender in the world.[1]
  • Toph discovered metalbending and was the only person shown to utilize it, until she taught others how to metalbend at her school. In The Legend of Korra, it is taught to the Republic City's police, appropriately named the Metalbending Police Force.[73]
  • Despite Toph's hatred for rules, she likes being in a position to enforce them, having founded and led Republic City's police force.
  • Toph was the third known person shown to be taught earthbending by the badgermoles, the first two being Oma and Shu.[74] Toph was also one of the few known to be taught by the animal from which a bending art originated, others include Iroh, Aang, Zuko, and Wan.
  • Toph had a crush on Sokka since at least the time when they traveled across the Serpent's Pass, which she tended to express by aiming more insults his way than toward anyone else. However, partially because Toph did not like admitting this even to herself, nothing ever came of this.
  • Toph was the only person in Team Avatar that did not have a romantic relationship by the end of the events of Avatar: The Last Airbender. However, she at least had some sorts of romantic relationship, in 119 AG and 126 AG, as she had two daughters, Lin and Suyin, with two different men.
  • Toph was the only member of the original four members of Team Avatar not to go on an adventure with Zuko after he joined the team, later wanting to go with him when splitting up to search for Aang. As she plainly put it, "Everyone else went on a life-changing field trip with Zuko, now it's my turn." However, it did not go how she planned, as he was more focused on finding Aang. Toph later stated, "This is the worst field trip ever."[7]
  • Although Toph's hair appeared to be short, it was shown to be very long and bushy when she let it down.[30]
  • Toph was the only member of Team Avatar with a known last name.
  • Toph was the only member of Team Avatar whose life was not uprooted or dramatically changed by the Hundred Year War or the Fire Nation.
  • Toph has not been with her parents since she ran away from home.[8] However, she did send them a letter[5] and unexpectedly reunited with her father at a refinery.[49]
  • Toph was the only member of Team Avatar to be of the same biological age as Aang, as both were biologically twelve years old (though Aang is chronologically older than her by one hundred years).
  • Toph had the last line in the original series, saying, "Well, I think you all look perfect."[44]
  • According to the DVD commentary for "The Blind Bandit", Toph's Earth Rumble outfit, which she wore throughout most of the series, was influenced by Chinese and European fashion styles.[21]
  • Toph is the only known individual capable of using both variations of seismic sense, as she was able to use the skill to feel vibrations as well as detect lies.
  • She initially appeared as a vision by Aang in "The Swamp". She had no lines, but giggled and laughed as Aang tried to pursue her.
  • Toph is a playable character in Legends of the Arena. She is unlocked through the use of a secret code ("metal bending"). Aside from her appearance and name, she is played just like any other character.
  • Toph is the youngest known earthbending master in Avatar: The Last Airbender.
  • Despite exclusively using Praying Mantis-style earthbending, it is possible Toph knows some very basic Hung Gar earthbending, at least in form only, since Master Yu gave her beginner-level instruction up until her meeting with Team Avatar.[8]
  • Ironically, Toph displayed great mastery over the Light Chakra when she overcame the illusion of the division between natural earths and refined metals by her insight that the forging process would always leave small natural impurities, despite having never dealt with light in her life.
  • Toph is the first character, followed by Zuko and Asami Sato, to join a Team Avatar with a father who is antagonistic toward them and their allies.
    • The three characters have also all had trouble earning their father's love. The major difference with Toph, however, is that unlike Ozai and Hiroshi, the actions of Toph's father were geared more toward paranoia and overprotection rather than directly inflicting pain on her out of some sense of morality.
  • Toph and Katara are the only known people to have trained two different Avatars, namely Aang and Korra.
  • Toph is known to hit people on the shoulder as a sign of affection.
  • Toph's mentorship of Korra through her physical and mental rehabilitation in the swamp shares many similarities to Yoda teaching Luke Skywalker on the swamp planet Dagobah in the Star Wars movies. Both Toph and Yoda resided in simplistic dwellings built in the hollows of large trees; both Luke and Korra underestimated their elderly masters based on their supposed physical limitations; and both teachers dealt with their learners' defeatist attitudes with unconventional and seemingly harsh methods. While aware of such similarities, they were not intentional homages on the part of the writers, however.[75]
  • Regarding Toph's relationship with Kanto, Bryan Konietzko felt that Toph's storyline was not incomplete simply because the audience was not aware of the details of said relationship, as for Toph, the short-lived relationship was not as significant to her compared to the one she had and wanted with her daughters, which Konietzko felt was the more compelling character arc.[76]
  • Toph is one of two known characters in the Avatar franchise to have had children with two different men, the other being Ursa.
  • Toph is the only character to appear in the graphic novel series for both Avatar: The Last Airbender and The Legend of Korra.

Original design[]

Sud concept art

Toph was originally designed as a sixteen-year-old boy.

Toph was initially designed as a jock-type, bad-mouthing, muscular, sixteen-year-old boy[68] who would act as a foil to Sokka's nerdiness,[77] as revealed by the co-creators Michael Dante DiMartino and Bryan Konietzko during an interview with Toon Zone.[78] This idea made its way into the unaired pilot episode's opening sequence and as the shadowed earthbender (which was confirmed by the creators to be Toph's "prototype") in the opening sequence. Later on, when the time came closer to the character's debut, the creators pitched about the humor behind a little girl being able to take on all the strong, buff earthbenders, an idea introduced by head writer Aaron Ehasz that was initially rejected by co-creator Konietzko. From this idea which blossomed as a joke and after long discussions, Toph was given her gender and turned into the character that was introduced in the show, ironically becoming one of Bryan's favorite characters. A joke about the prototype later appeared as the actor playing Toph in The Boy in the Iceberg play bore a closer resemblance to the initial design.[41] The original design also greatly influenced the character Bolin in The Legend of Korra.[73]

Preceded by
Position established[18]
Chief of the Metalbending Police Force
Unknown - 143 AG
Succeeded by
Unknown, eventually Lin Beifong

Preceded by
Avatar's earthbending master
100 AG
Succeeded by
Unknown teacher


  1. 1.0 1.1 1.2 1.3 1.4 1.5 DiMartino, Michael Dante, Konietzko, Bryan (writers) & Volpe, Giancarlo (director). (December 1, 2006). "The Guru". Avatar: The Last Airbender. Season 2. Episode 19. Nickelodeon.
  2. 2.0 2.1 2.2 2.3 O'Bryan, John (writer) & Spaulding, Ethan (director). (November 17, 2006). "The Earth King". Avatar: The Last Airbender. Season 2. Episode 18. Nickelodeon.
  3. 3.0 3.1 3.2 3.3 3.4 DiMartino, Michael Dante, Hamilton, Joshua (writers) & Spaulding, Ethan (director). (September 15, 2006). "The Serpent's Pass". Avatar: The Last Airbender. Season 2. Episode 12. Nickelodeon.
  4. 4.0 4.1 4.2 4.3 4.4 Hedrick, Tim (writer) & MacMullan, Lauren (director). (September 22, 2006). "City of Walls and Secrets". Avatar: The Last Airbender. Season 2. Episode 14. Nickelodeon.
  5. 5.0 5.1 5.2 5.3 5.4 5.5 5.6 5.7 Hamilton, Joshua (writer) & Volpe, Giancarlo (director). (November 2, 2007). "The Runaway". Avatar: The Last Airbender. Season 3. Episode 7. Nickelodeon.
  6. 6.0 6.1 Hicks, Faith Erin (writer), Wartman, Peter (artist), Matera, Adele (colorist). Toph Beifong's Metalbending Academy (February 16, 2021), Dark Horse Comics.
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  8. 8.00 8.01 8.02 8.03 8.04 8.05 8.06 8.07 8.08 8.09 8.10 8.11 DiMartino, Michael Dante (writer) & Spaulding, Ethan (director). (May 5, 2006). "The Blind Bandit". Avatar: The Last Airbender. Season 2. Episode 6. Nickelodeon.
  9. 9.0 9.1 9.2 From older Avatar: The Last Airbender official site, originally on Nick.com. Encyclopedia now broken, archived at The Lost Lore of Avatar Aang - Character: Toph.
  10. EXCLUSIVE: Yang Continues "Avatar: The Last Airbender" in The Search. Comic Book Resources. Retrieved on June 25, 2012.
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  15. 15.0 15.1 15.2 DiMartino, Michael Dante (writer), Wong, Michelle (artist), Ng, Killian (colorist). Ruins of the Empire Part Two (November 12, 2019), Dark Horse Comics.
  16. Archived at Morgan Bannon on X. X (April 12, 2024). Retrieved on April 13, 2024.
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  45. DiMartino, Michael Dante; Konietzko, Bryan; Yang, Gene Luen (writer), Sasaki of Gurihiru (penciling, inking), Kawano of Gurihiru (colorist), Heisler, Michael; Comicraft (letterer). The Promise Part One (January 25, 2012), Dark Horse Comics.
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