The Last Airbender – 16 Best Quotes From Iroh


One of the most wholesome characters in both Avatar: The Last Airbender, and The Legend of Korra, Iroh was beloved by viewers as an easygoing, funny, and spiritual character. His lovable personality and gentleness were a stark contrast to many other members of the Fire Nation, including members of his own family.

Also known as The Dragon of the West and a member of the secretive Order of the White Lotus, Iroh played a pivotal role in ending the 100-year war in Avatar: The Last Airbender, after leaving his former life as a famed Fire Nation General and former crown prince behind, helping to guide his outcast nephew Zuko to fulfill his real destiny of restoring balance and peace alongside Avatar Aang. These are just a few of the many wise and insightful thoughts from Iroh.


“History Is Not Always Kind To Its Subjects.”

Avatar: The Last Airbender S1E19 “The Siege of the North Part 1”

Iroh Confused From Avatar

This particular line of Iroh’s is one said to Admiral Zhao, the man employed to track the Avatar who was willing to cross every line to do it. Iroh never agreed with the mission to hunt down the Avatar, but he was there to support his nephew, so he and Zhao didn’t see eye to eye on methods.

RELATED: Top 10 Uncle Iroh Musings Of Wisdom In Avatar

Most students of history will argue that “history is written by the victors” instead of agreeing with Iroh’s subject, but Iroh isn’t wrong here. He believed in the idea of the Avatar. He also understood why other world citizens were critical of the Fire Nation. Iroh knew that Zhao likely would be seen as the villain once the hunt for the Avatar was finally over, and he was right.

“Destiny Is A Funny Thing. You Never Know How Things Are Going To Work Out.”

Avatar: The Last Airbender S3E11, Day Of The Black Sun Part 2

Iroh stands ahead of his allies amongst smoke in The Last Airbender

Destiny is a big theme in the Avatar franchise. After all, someone is destined to become the Avatar, whether they like it or not. Zuko constantly talked about his destiny, initially believing his was to capture the Avatar for the Fire Nation.

Iroh, however, knows that things are not so black and white. His life experience has taught him that sometimes believing your destiny is one narrow avenue isn’t going to work out in your favor. He became a great war hero, lost his son, and watched his brother become corrupted by power. He knows that Zuko’s path could end up being a dark one, which is why he tries to remind him to keep an open mind.

“Life Happens Wherever You Are, Whether You Make It Or Not.”

Avatar: The Last Airbender S2E14, City Of Walls And Secrets

Iroh grieving his son under a tree in Avatar: The Last Airbender

This particular quote from Iroh is said to his nephew Zuko. Not long after the two make their way to Ba Sing Se and have to live among the people, working in a tea shop, Zuko hates his life. He had a specific picture and path in mind, and Ba Sing Se didn’t live up to it. Iroh, however, isn’t phased at all.

He understands that life goes on, no matter what plans are made. It’s the same idea he has about destiny. Iroh knows that he and Zuko just have to make the best of the situation they find themselves in, and that’s what he tries to impart to Zuko.

“Perfection And Power Are Overrated. I Think You Are Very Wise To Choose Happiness And Love.”

Avatar: The Last Airbender S2E20 “The Crossroads Of Destiny”

Iroh from Avatar the Last Airbender holding flame in his hands

Aang turns to Iroh after he fails to let go of Katara while working with the Guru to release his full Avatar State. He worries that he made the wrong decision, but Uncle Iroh is there to try to reassure him and provide some of his life advice.

Iroh tells him that it’s wise to choose love, happiness, and friendship over the need to perfect oneself, and it’s good advice that Aang takes to heart.

“There Is Nothing Wrong With A Life Of Peace And Prosperity. I Suggest You Think About What It Is That You Want From Your Life.”

Avatar: The Last Airbender S2E17 “Lake Laogai”

Iroh drinking tea in Avatar: The Last Airbender

When Uncle Iroh and his nephew Zuko are living as refugees they struggle to figure out what their next steps are. Iroh is lucky and can open his tea shop, but Zuko is left without a passion after their banishment and his hunt for the Avatar is ended.

RELATED: 10 Things You Didn’t Know About Fire Lord Izumi In Legend Of Korra

Zuko says he still wants to fulfill his destiny by finding the Avatar, and his uncle asks him what he truly wants as his destiny instead of just following his old path. He says that leading a simple life of peace and prosperity is just as fulfilling as an adventurous one.

“While It Is Always Best To Believe In Oneself, A Little Help From Others Can Be A Great Blessing.”

Avatar: The Last Airbender S2E15 “The Tales Of Ba Sing Se”

Iroh smiling in Avatar: The Last Airbender

Uncle Iroh was known for his words of wisdom that mostly helped his nephew Zuko throughout the series. He tells Zuko that he needs to have self-confidence and be able to believe and trust in himself, but it doesn’t hurt to ask for help.

Zuko takes a while to realize that he can turn to his trusted Uncle for help when he truly needs him, and he eventually teams up with the Avatar to help Aang and asks for help himself.

“The Best Tea Tastes Delicious Whether It Comes In A Porcelain Pot Or A Tin Cup.”

Avatar: The Last Airbender S2E05 “Avatar Day”

Iroh playing a game with a pot of tea in front of him in Avatar: The Last Airbender

Uncle Iroh tries to teach Zuko how to be a better person throughout Avatar and pleads with him to realize that he should be enjoying the little things and hopefully start making moralistic choices in his life. When the two are living as refugees they don’t have any money and Zuko quickly becomes annoyed.

Iroh doesn’t seem deterred by their new station in life and tells Zuko that his tea will taste fine in the finest cups or a tin cup. It’s a great lesson and shows how well-adjusted Iroh is.

“Sharing Tea With A Fascinating Stranger Is One Of Life’s True Delights.”

Avatar: The Last Airbender S2E08 “The Chase”

Toph and Iroh having tea together in Avatar: The Last Airbender

Uncle Iroh is known for his love of tea and love of meeting new people throughout the series and this quote sums him up well. Iroh meets Toph while the two are traveling, and he prepares tea for them to enjoy together.

RELATED: Uncle Iroh’s 10 Best Avatar Moments

The two bond even though they’re on opposite sides of the fight at this point as Zuko and Iroh are still hunting the Avatar who Toph was traveling with recently.

“It’s Time To Look Inward And Start Asking Yourself The Big Questions… Who Are You, And What Do You Want?”

Avatar: The Last Airbender S2E17 “Lake Laogai”

Uncle Iroh shouting at Zuko in in Avatar: The Last Airbender

This quote is one of the few times Iroh forgoes his gentle nature and gives Zuko some tough love. Oftentimes Iroh uses a lot of metaphors and poetic language when he speaks, but this quote is the exception – he’s giving it to him straight. He’s being more forceful with Zuko at this moment because due to years of conditioning and abuse at the hands of his father Ozai, Zuko still struggles to think for himself and beyond what was expected of him as a Fire Nation prince.

There are many great mentors in movies and television throughout history, but the mentorship and bond between Iroh and Zuko is one of the most triumphant and powerful examples out there.

“Many Things That Seem Threatening In The Dark Become Welcoming When We Shine Light On Them.”

Avatar: The Legend Of Korra S2E10 “A New Spiritual Age”

Uncle Iroh smiling slightly with a light shining up at him in Avatar: The Legend Of Korra

This quote is from The Legend of Korra season 2, episode 10. Iroh plays a significant role in this episode as he guides and comforts Korra while she is reverted to a child-like form in the spirit world and helps her become less afraid. Iroh has always been a very mystical and spiritual character; in ATLA it was said that he had traveled to the spirit world. This is proven when Iroh, who had been captured by Earth Kingdom soldiers in the material world, can see Roku’s dragon fly across the sky with Aang in the spirit world.

Spirits mingle more and more with humans in The Legend of Korra. As the Avatar, Korra struggles with spirituality at first, but when she gets a better handle on it, she takes being the bridge between the spirit world and the human world to the next level. Korra opens the spirit portals, allowing the spirit wilds to grow throughout Republic City and the rest of the world and ushering in a new era of spirituality among human beings.

“Follow Your Passion And Life Will Reward You.”

Avatar: The Last Airbender S2E19 “The Guru”

Uncle Iroh smiling softly in Avatar: The Last Airbender

This is another one of Iroh’s more straightforward quotes, but an important one all the same. Iroh oftentimes follows this piece of advice, indulging himself with tea and games; he even opens a tea shop in Ba Sing Se and finds a lot of fulfillment this way.

RELATED: Zuko’s 10 Most Intriguing Quotes From Avatar – The Last Airbender

Iroh’s tea shop appears in the ATLA comic book series, covering events that take place after the show. In one scene Iroh creates a strange new type of drink – bubble tea – and serves it to the Gaang.

“Pride Is Not The Opposite Of Shame, But It’s Source… True Humility Is The Only Antidote To Shame.”

Avatar: The Last Airbender S2E09 “Bitter Work”

Uncle Iroh reading in Avatar: The Last Airbender

This is one of the many wise pieces of advice that Iroh gives Zuko in the hopes that he will unlearn some of the more harmful and damaging aspects of Fire Nation culture. At the beginning of the series, Zuko has a toxic relationship with both his family and his nation, and he values nothing besides restoring his honor and continuing the imperialistic 100-year war over the other three nations.

These extreme and nationalistic notions are not only shown by Zuko’s pride and blind loyalty – but they’re also on display when Aang goes undercover in a Fire Nation school.

“Even In The Material World, You Will Find That If You Look For The Light, You Can Often Find It… But If You Look For The Dark, That Is All You Will Ever See.”

Avatar: The Legend Of Korra S2E10 “A New Spiritual Age”

Uncle Iroh holding a tea kettle in his outstretched hand in Avatar

This is another quote from The Legend of Korra. Spirits appear as monsters to Korra because she is already expecting them to be scary and dangerous, but when she follows Iroh’s advice the spirits transform into friendlier and cuter creatures. Once she is at ease, Korra then joins Iroh and the spirits in a mad-hatter-style tea party.

RELATED: The 10 Oldest Benders In The Avatar Franchise

This is an important quote that highlights the importance and power of positive thinking and choosing to look on the bright side of whatever situation life might throw at you.

“At My Age, There Is Only One Big Suprise Left, And I’d Just As Soon Leave It A Mystery.”

Avatar: The Last Airbender S1E15 “Bato Of The Water Tribe”

Uncle Iroh hugging a young Korra in Avatar: The Legend Of Korra

Being such a transcendent character, it’s fitting that Iroh would spend the afterlife in the spirit world in The Legend of Korra after a comfortable life in retirement as a tea shop owner.

Iroh may have been an older man in the series, but his power and strength are undeniable. From his impressive fire bending techniques in Avatar: The Last Airbender to his cunning, those who underestimate him are quick to regret it. While in prison, Iroh tricked the guards and secretly built up his strength until he was insanely muscular. He warned Ming, a sympathetic guard (voiced by Serena Williams), of his plans and broke out with ease the next day. He went on to join the other members of the Order of the White Lotus to help the Avatar beat Ozai.

“It’s Important To Draw Wisdom From Many Different Places… If We Take It From Only One Place It Becomes Rigid And Stale.”

Avatar: The Last Airbender S2E09 “Bitter Work”

Uncle Iroh breathing fire in Avatar

This is an important quote about open-mindedness that Iroh tells Zuko while teaching him a fire bending move that he created by watching Avatar’s water benders.

The move would allow Zuko to redirect lighting, using the Chi that flowed through his body to pass the lighting from his arm, into his stomach, and out through his other arm. As usual, Zuko would become frustrated and impatient during this lesson, but he would eventually use it successfully against his father later on.

“In The Darkest Times, Hope Is Something You Give Yourself… That Is The Meaning Of Inner Strength.”

Avatar: The Last Airbender S2E05 “Avatar Day”

Uncle Iroh sitting in a jail cell in Avatar: The Last Airbender

This is a powerful line of dialogue from Iroh about never giving up. As a supporting character in the Avatar franchise, Iroh is incredibly dynamic and always makes viewers laugh when things get too serious.

However, he provides so much more than just comic relief, we also learn about the hardships he faced and the battles he overcame throughout the show. Ultimately, these quotes showcase his depth, wisdom, and love for Zuko and peace.

NEXT: The 10 Most Inspiring Quotes From The Avatar – The Last Airbender Series

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Denis Ava
Denis Ava
Denis Ava is mainly a business blogger who writes for Biz Grows. Rather than business blogs he loves to write and explore his talents in other niches such as fashion, technology, travelling,finance,etc.

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