|“||You said that you'd rather die yourself than see your children suffer.||”|
— Elijah quoting Esther
Esther Mikaelson, also known as the Original Witch, was a former powerful witch and is currently possessing the vampire body of Lenore Shaw. Esther is the wife of Mikael, the young sister of Dahlia, the mother of Freya, Finn, Elijah, Niklaus, Kol, Rebekah, and Henrik Mikaelson, and the grandmother of Hope Mikaelson. She was a woman who was highly devoted to her family, especially her children, and she was devastated by the death of her son Henrik at the hands of the werewolves and swore not to lose another child. Along with her husband Mikael, she was responsible for the creation of the vampire species. Esther cast the spell on her family after her witch friend, Ayana, refused to cast the spell. When her son Klaus was revealed to be a vampire/werewolf, she also was responsible for imprisoning his werewolf side in a dormant form. Klaus killed Esther by choking her to death.
Her body was preserved with a spell by her friend and mentor, Ayana, who was also a witch, and she would be able to return to it when a bloodknot spell would release her, allowing her to channel a whole line of witches both living and dead. Esther returned when Ayana's descendants, Abby and Bonnie Bennett, released her and began to plan the destruction of her children because she needed to repair the mistake she had made by turning her children into vampires. Esther originally planned to link her children as one, then temporarily undo their vampirism, allowing her to kill them, with the help of Finn. However, her plan failed when Abby was turned into a vampire by Damon Salvatore, breaking her access to the Bennett witch line and the power from the witches dead and alive.
Esther however, had a plan B. Taking advantage of Alaric's passing to the Other Side every time he died, she nurtured his violent hatred for vampires until it manifested as an alternate personality. Then, Esther made an alliance with this alter, in order to end her family. She would use his ring to make the white oak stake indestructible, then turn him into an Original, so he could face her children on equal terms. However, to ensure that Alaric would never turn into a monster like her children, she bound his life to Elena Gilbert's. However, before she could watch her plan come to fruition, she was killed by Alaric, who, in transition, had temporarily regained his true self.
After her second death, Klaus continued to carry around her corpse in one of his coffins. When Sophie needed to consecrate the power of an extremely powerful witch in order to become an Elder, and Celeste Dubois's power was gone, Elijah offered up Esther. The siblings worked with Sophie to consecrate Esther's remains, and add her power to the witches'.
However, this plan severely backfired, as Esther used the opportunity to assume control of the entire coven, living and dead, and ordered them to kill her granddaughter, and then, after Genevieve's failure, she successfully resurrected herself, possessing the body of the last Harvest Girl, Cassie.
Esther was the main antagonist of Season 3 of the Vampire Diaries, as well as the main antagonist of the last chapter of Season 1 as well as the main antagonist of the first chapter of Season 2 of The Originals Esther is the matriarch of the Mikaelson Family.
Early Life/The Middle Ages
Esther was born in a witch family in the Kingdom of Norway some time during the 10th Century. Esther had an older sister named Dahlia. It's implied that Esther was close to her mother as she would later tell her son that her mother taught her about bird's tune. She should have been close to her sister but they had differing outlooks and different points of view which caused them to grow apart. Despise being born from a powerful witch bloodline, Esther was not interested in the practice of magic unlike her sister, who devoted herself to the Black Art.
Esther favored being a wife and a mother and at some time, she met and fell in love with a Viking and a wealthy Eastern European land owner, Mikael, whom she married. However, after almost a year of marriage, she was still unable to conceive a child. As she didn't practice magic, she came to her sister Dahlia for help. After Esther discussed her issue of being barren and unable to conceive, Dahlia agreed to help her sister by casting a fertility spell which would help her to conceive and get pregnant. Esther soon fell pregnant and gave birth to a daughter Freya, her first born child. She later had another child, a son named Finn. From this moment, she lived happily with Mikael and even fell pregnant with a third child.
However, during her third pregnancy, Mikael temporarily left for a voyage and Dahlia asked to have Freya taken away. Esther tried to stand up for herself against Dahlia but Dahlia told her that fate decided that Esther will not have children. But they changed it and now Esther had to pay; by giving all the first borns who will come from her bloodline (grandchild, great-grandchild, etc). Esther swore to have her magic back, to gain immense power and to make Dahlia pay for what she had done. But her sister mocked her, threatened to take all of her children, including Finn and the unborn Elijah. Dahlia took Freya away while Freya screamed for her mother. When Mikael came back, Esther told him that Freya had died from the Plague. They decided to leave their homeland to come to the New World. She gave birth to her third child Elijah but regardless, Esther was still devastated by Freya's "death". Mikael, still mourning his child's "death", became cold and estranged from his wife. At this time, Esther had met a young werewolf leader named Ansel and she fell in love with him. She began the construction of a Moonlight Ring for him. Soon, she fell pregnant with his son. However, she came back to Mikael, who had refused Ansel to be near his unborn child. She later gave birth to a son that Mikael named Niklaus and the birth helped to bring them together as a family once more. They would go on to have three other children: Kol, Rebekah and Henrik.
She later made a bird Necklace to make her son Niklaus weak and to prevent him from killing someone, which would trigger his werewolf gene. This became even more necessary when Mikael became abusive towards Klaus as he thought that his son was weak. And she became obsessed with the idea that Klaus always has to hold the necklace.
In the New World, Esther began to practice magic once more and became the best friend of the powerful witch Ayana (a descendant of Qetsiyah and an ancestor of the Bennett bloodline) who was also her mentor.
At some point, Niklaus and Henrik came to see the werewolves transformation during a full moon and Henrik was mauled by a werewolf from Ansel's pack. Klaus took his brother to Esther but it was too late and Henrik tragically died.
Later, Mikael asked Ayana for help so that they could make all of their children immortals but Ayana refused. As a result, Esther ended up performing The Immortality Spell herself by using the blood of Klaus and Elijah's lover, Tatia (a doppelganger and descendant of Amara and a member of the Petrova bloodline) that would transform her family into the first known vampires.
However, the spell had complications and prices that came along with it. She had to make Daylight Jewelry for them and she had watched them feed and kill innocent humans all for the consumption of human blood. When Klaus finally killed his first human, he triggered his werewolf gene and later transformed, killing and slaughtering many people. Knowing from then that Klaus was not his biological son, Mikael forced Esther to supress Klaus’ werewolf side, which she had done by using the blood of Tatia, whom Elijah accidentally killed.
She was then killed by Klaus who choked her to death and put the blame to Mikael.
After she died, Esther's body was preserved and placed in a coffin by her witch friend, Ayana. Esther's spirit however, was forced to watch her children wreak havoc on the world from the Other Side and feel the pain of every victim as nature's way of punishing her for her actions.
Throughout The Vampire Diaries Series
Throughout The Originals Series
In Always and Forever, Elijah shows Hayley some of his past with his family, a 1000 years back when they were all humans. He told her that his mother, Esther, was doing dark magic and that once the tragedy of Henrik happened, his father, Mikael, convinced his wife to make him and their children into vampires, to protect themselves against the werewolves. But once Niklaus makes his first human kill, his father discovers the truth that his wife had been unfaithful many years before. Mikael then forced his wife to make Klaus' werewolf side dormant. Esther is then seen performing the Hybrid Curse on Klaus to suppress his werewolf side which turned him from an Original Hybrid into an Original Vampire for 1,000 years.
In Sinners and Saints, when Elijah finds out how powerful the witch Davina is, he tries to strike a deal with her and tells her about his mother and her Grimoires. Now, my mother was a very powerful witch. She left behind her grimoires, a legacy of books filled with spells. These books contain all of the tools that you might need to control your magic.In Fruit of the Poisoned Tree, Elijah sees through his mother's Grimoire, and gives Davina a page from that Grimoire, the spell of unknotting, an unlinking spell that would unlink both Hayley and Sophie. Elijah reveals to Davina that his mother created the unlinking spell with a sanguinum knot. In Apres Moi, Le Deluge, after Sophie Deveraux failed to absorb Celeste Dubois's powers, Elijah came up with the idea of burying his mother. Esther's dead body is currently in a coffin at the Mikaelson Family Mansion, in the basement. Elijah explains they need to bury their mother to complete The Harvest. Elijah explains to his siblings that if they bury their mother on land owned by one of her descendants, she becomes an New Orleans Witch. Then they will share in the Ancestral Magic, through Sophie, but for that to happen the siblings need to participate in The Harvest. Elijah also explains that Klaus's baby needs to own a property as it's a pure Hybrid. They then all agree to bury their mother outside The Mikaelson Family Mansion. When they are burying her, Kieran gives them a knife in with each of them must give some blood for it to work even Hayley must give blood to Esther. Kieran then takes the knife and throws it with Esther's coffin.
In Farewell to Storyville, Esther's daughter Rebekah along with Marcellus Gerard visited her mother's resting place outside The Mikaelson Mansion, which had recently been burned by down Celeste Dubois. Rebekah is standing before her mother's grave and thought of while her mother is resting forever in New Orleans, she has to find herself another home. On Esther's tombstone it says, "Our Beloved Mother."
In From a Cradle to a Grave, Esther is first mentioned by Genevieve as she reveals to Elijah and Hayley that since her consecration, Esther has been leading the Ancestors. With that, she also reveals it was Esther who ordered the witches to kill Klaus' child. Esther herself though is seen at the exact end of the episode. At first, it remains unknown that she is in possession of the teenage girl that rises from the dead-Cassie. As she walks out of the cemetery, she heads to the place of Esther's tombstone, with a man beside her, seemingly aware that she is in fact Esther. As she places a rose on her tombstone, the other witch tells her to rest in peace, to which she responds saying it would be no fun. Then, she claims both he and her have much work to do as she starts walking, with the man behind her answering by calling her mother, confirming he is one of her sons, Finn.
In Rebirth, Esther, in the body of Cassie, is first seen commenting to Francesca Correa that, as she is no longer part of the coven, Davina's actions are not legislated by the other witches, only for Francesca to demand that "Cassie" make her. She's later seen walking with Finn, the two commenting on Klaus and Elijah's strategy to psyche Francesca out into making a wrong move. Esther comments that Francesca will be her own undoing. Esther is later seen when a vampire tells the wolves that the Originals no longer have the White Oak Stake. Esther attempts to perform a locator spell, but it blocking, to which she states that she'd love to know by who, while annoyed. Finally, she is seen with Finn, asking if Cami bought his act as Vincent to which he affirms. While commenting on the weakness of his mortal body, Esther responds that he should be lucky that he isn't in the body of a teenager. Just then another witch, Kaleb comes in, commenting that he loves his body, and that Davina does as well. Esther, revealing that Kaleb is in fact Kol, comments that with the death of the Guerreras, she is now in a position to take over both the witches and the werewolves, and that with the vampires gone, The Original Family is in a position to "take root" within the city, she then instructs her sons to help her, as she has a family reunion planned.
In Alive and Kicking, Esther is still in Cassie's body. She is making moonlight rings in return for the werewolves allegiance. Klaus visits her and they talk. Klaus discovers Esther is possessing Cassie.
In Wheel Inside the Wheel, a flashback reveales that Esther was not an only child and infact had a sister, Dahlia. Esther sought help from Daliha in order to get pregnant, stating that Dahlia was more powerful than she and she could not refuse her. It appears that Esther and Dahlia made a deal, Dahlia would perform a fertility spell, however, Esther would need to sacrifice her first born and the first born of each generation, this appears to be the reason Esther was bent on killing Hope, to stop Dahlias return. Later on, it is revealed that Esther had pulled Klaus' father from the Other Side before it's demise. Trying to convince Klaus' to agree with her plans, Esther confronts him in Lafayette Cemetery, Klaus violently attacks Esther, grabbing her throat and reveals that he hates her because she came after his family and daughter, he swears he will hurt her as only he can.
Esther was a devoted and loving mother to her children prior to them becoming vampires. She wanted the best for her children, and fearing they would die because of the werewolves, she used a spell which turned them into vampires.
Unlike Mikael who was hard on Klaus, Esther treated him like the rest of his siblings, and occasionally defended him against Mikael, telling the latter that Klaus only means well when Mikael went to confront Klaus, who was sparring with Elijah, but she never tried to stop him from humiliating or from physically/mentally abusing her son, it is likely she was afraid to challenge her husband when trying to defend Klaus. She was capable of being deceptive and was willing to do whatever it took to fulfill her goals despite facing the consequences. She was a skilled liar, and was far from a forgiving person, which ultimately caused her to attempt to kill her own children. It is unknown if Esther knew killing her children would wipe out vampires but this likely wouldn't have deterred her from doing so, regardless of whether any of these vampires fed on human blood. However, her plan to kill the Originals required turning them human first, its unknown if vampires would remain connected to their progenitors had it worked. She also tried to kill Jeremy and Matt, knowing full well they were only there to protect Elena. She was ruthless in her goals but still admitted to loving her children but acknowledged that they are monsters who have killed countless innocents and all because she made them immortal. She created vampires, which are considered abominations to nature, therefore, she would stop at nothing to correct this mistake. Despite her sometimes ruthless nature, her actions stems from a good heart. She believes she cursed her children to become abominations and genuinely believes vampires are evil, and wants no human to suffer at the hands of them.
Esther is delusional, she believes that everything she has done including the fact that she once tried to kill her children, is for their own good, she is also a hypocrite, as she blames both Elijah and Klaus for Hope's death, when she was the one who ordered her granddaughter's death in the first place (unaware that Hope is still alive).
No matter how harsh it is, when Klaus tells Esther that she is the monster who made the Original Vampires who they are, it is actually a true fact.
According to Finn and Klaus, Esther is a very smart strategist and skilled in making people suffer, traits she passed on to several of her children, including Klaus, despite this, she can sometimes underestimate her children.
Even as a ghost, Esther is set on eradicating the world of the vampires she created a thousand years ago. Upon learning about the existence of her granddaughter, Esther ordered the witches of New Orleans to kill Hope at all costs. Like before, Esther genuinely believes that what she is doing is right and for the greater good.
Esther is in her mid to late 40's, somewhere between 45-48. She is tall, slim and a beautiful woman with long natural blond hair and brown eyes. Rebekah greatly resembles her, inheriting the pale skin and blonde hair along with features.
Powers and Abilities
Esther is amongst the greatest and most powerful, darkest witches in history, due to her various acts of great significance to the future, mostly negative. Over her short life in the modern times, during her mission to end her children, Esther has demonstrated various feats of great power. During her time in the afterlife, she still had great power, though only usable as long as her talisman in the living world remains intact.She managed to perform a spell from the dead to give Vicki a foothold in the world of the living, making her a corporeal soul, though her magic was undone by Bonnie who sent Vicki away. Esther used this and then opened a wedge between the worlds, which allowed various ghosts with unfinished business to return. Bonnie managed to undo this spell as well by destroying Esther's only link to the living, her talisman, though it fixed itself immediately, much to Bonnie's surprise. 1,000 years after her death, Esther managed to resurrect herself in her preserved body, though only by channeling all of the Bennett witches, including Qetsiyah. She was able to link the original vampires with wine laced with Elena's blood, though the spell was reversed by Bonnie later on. Esther even planned on curing all of her children in the end to kill them as humans, though due to Abby becoming a vampire, she lost her connection to the Bennett's and started dying. After faking her death, she possessed Rebekah though she quickly returned to her body afterwards. Though, the feats that made her one of the most powerful witches in history belongs to the past. Her most powerful spell to date and possibly one of the most powerful in history was the creation of vampires, by drawing on multiple sources of power, such as the sun and the white oak tree. Despite being warned against doing so, she tapped into dark magic and performed the spell, giving a rise to a predatory species that spread throughout the world like a plague. She repeated the same spell a 1,000 years later on Alaric, making him stronger and faster than her children, though she bound him to Elena, therefore, she was his only weakness. After failure to hide her affair with a werewolf, Esther was forced to curse her own son by suppressing his werewolf side. She is also known as the creator of the moonlight rings by combining various spells into one and also created the daylight rings, used as protection against the sun. She even managed to make an indestructible white oak stake, by using the essence of the ring created by Emily Bennett. She was also capable of perfect control over human bodies against their will, shown when she almost killed Matt and Jeremy by turning their bodies against each other, though she was stopped by Alaric. Her latest act was self-resurrection, though more in the form of possession when instead of the last Harvest girl being resurrected, only her body was, though it was inhabited by Esther's spirit. She even performed the same spell with her sons, Finn, by invoking his soul into the body of a resurrected witch named Vincent and Kol, by invoking his soul into the body of a witch named Kaleb.
According to Elijah, she is also a master of possession, with evidence provided by her possession of; Rebekah, Cassie, and now Lenore. She was able to not only overwhelm the consciousness of each of the other women, but able to leave them unharmed. According to Klaus, Esther was also highly proficient in the art of producing magical talismans. She was responsible for rendering the last remaining White Oak Stake indestructible, as well as for gifting a young Klaus with an amulet that purposedly weakens him and thereby prevent him from ever triggering his Werewolf gene. And being the one responsible for turning her husband and children into Original Vampires, she was also the first to manufacture Daylight Rings. She even found a way for Werewolves to harness the full strength of their curse by means of the Moonlight Rings. Though she didn't get the chance since Mikael killed her Werewolf lover. It wasn't until the 21st Century did Esther manufacture the Moonlight Rings.
However, Esther was not always the great and powerful witch as known to the supernatural community. Instead, it was recently revealed that what led Esther to improving her power and tapping into dark magic again was the loss of her first-born child, her daughter Freya whom she had to give to her elder sister Dahlia, a much more powerful witch at the time as a part of their bargain. On that day, Esther angrily promised her sister that she will rise in the black arts and become a powerful witch in order to avenge her daughter, despite her achievements, Esther's powers and abilities are still inferior to her older sister Dahlia.
However now that she has been turned (indirectly) by Rebekah, she no longer possesses the powers of a witch, Esther now possesses all the standard powers and abilities of a vampire.
- Esther is a female Persian name (استر) which means "star" or a Hebrew form of the Persian goddess Ishtar. In the Old Testament, Esther is the name of the Jewish queen of King Ahasuerus of Persia who save her people from the wicked plans of Haman.
- Esther was the best friend of another witch named Ayana, an ancestor of Bonnie Bennett.
- Rebekah says that Esther is the Original Witch but she's not the first witch.
- Her name is a title. The Original Witch stands for the Witch of the Original Family of Vampires, not the first witch ever. Her husband Mikael, and son Niklaus have titles, the Original Vampire Hunter and Original Hybrid respectively.
- Esther has died twice in the series and both her deaths were violent.
- At some point after the Originals left New Orleans, Klaus retrieved his mother's body and placed her in a casket with his siblings, albeit Klaus or Esther locked the coffin mystically to either keep Esther in, or to protect Esther's body.
- Esther created the spells for both the Moonlight and Daylight rings. The Moonlight ring came first as she created it for Klaus' biological father.
- Nature will not permit Esther to rest until all vampires are gone.
- She is the main antagonist of Season 3.
- She is also the only main antagonist that does not appear during the final 2 episodes of a season.
- She is the first Caucasian female witch to be shown on the TV series.
- She is the second oldest Caucasian witch to be in the TV series after Silas.
- Esther appears in The Originals episode Always and Forever, albeit played by a body double.  Alice Evans was pregnant during filming, and therefore unable to commit to reprising the role.
- Esther's Grimoires, currently in the possession of the Mikaelson family, are the oldest known grimoires in existence, older than Emily Bennett's Grimoires by over 600 years.
- Esther invented the unlinking spell using a sanguinal knot.
- It's probable that she knew about Qetsiyah, Silas and Amara's existence because she used a variation of Qetsiyah's immortality spell.
- She appears to have the closest relationship with Finn, however she deemed Klaus to be her most special child.
- According to her daughter she was the most powerful Witch in history.
- Esther corrects her own daughter's statement when she is revived through Cassie by saying she was only one of the greatest witches to ever live.
- After her consecration into the Ancestral fold, Esther became the leader of the Ancestors and by extension most of the living witches of New Orleans.
- She was often referred to as The Original Witch due to being a member of the Original family of vampires.
- In The Originals Season 2, Esther will be mass producing Moonlight rings without Klaus' permission, drawing him to the cemetery where she is waiting to confront him.
- Though not initially aware that her husband, Mikael was revived as well, Esther discovered his resurrection in Wheel Inside the Wheel.
- Both her second death and second ressurection occurred in a cemetery.
- Esther is said to be a master in skill of possession, a skill she has shown on a number of occasions; possessing Rebekah, Cassie, and currently Lenore.
- In Red Door, Esther is seen drinking tea for almost the entire time, which fits with Kol calling her 'as mad as a hatter'.
- Many believed that Klaus ripped Esther's heart from her chest with even Esther herself telling Elena that Klaus tore her heart out, though she could have simply meant metaphorically in the sense that she felt as if Klaus had ripped her heart out. However, it was revealed in Wheel Inside the Wheel that Klaus choked her to death.
- Esther is the second parent in the Originals to be turned into a vampire by their own child. In her case it was her daughter, Rebekah.