Let’s get this straight: there is NOT, at least at the time of writing, a Zelda multiverse. But there are a LOT of Princess Zeldas. So what’s up with this? Is Zelda just a popular name in Hyrule? Let’s find out why Zelda has so many incarnations, or should it be said… so many relatives. I’ll also break down her history stemming from BotW’s fragments.
Blame it on her brother.
So, yes, Zelda does have a brother in Zelda II: The Adventure of Link (yes, it goes way back). As the Sleeping Beauty under a wizard’s spell, she rested in Hyrule’s North Castle. Wait, how did the wizard get there?
Rewind to when the unnamed Prince of Hyrule aka Zelda’s mysterious brother started demanding the secrets of the Triforce from his sister. When she refused, his friend the wizard attempted to angrily strike her down. She was fortunately not killed and was simply cast into the sleeping spell. The wizard’s uncontrollable magic killed himself instead. Mr. Prince, regretting the accident, signed a decree in honor of his poor sister: that all blood princesses of Hyrule in the future lineage shall be named Zelda. Which, by the way, is why King Rhoam’s diary in BotW’s Hyrule Castle says that he named his daughter so due to the royal tradition.
And just so you know, at the end of the game, heroic Link Link obtains the Triforce of Courage and unites the entire Triforce, saving the beautiful maiden as always.
Who is BotW Zelda’s grandmother, then?
BotW Zelda’s grandmother, whom she inherited her magical sealing power from, is likely another Princess Zelda from her father’s side. While no known Zeldas have gotten married and had children, BotW Zelda’s mother has been heavily speculated not to have royal blood. The only other way for Zelda to have inherited her power from her mother’s side was if Skyward Sword‘s Zelda was her grandmother since she was a simple villager on Skyloft. She was blessed, but that doesn’t change the fact that she never really was a princess in SS.
Sealing powers were not shown in any other LoZ game, though. That creates another problem. If no other Zelda had the power, who could BotW Zelda have inherited it from? Perhaps she did not inherit it; it was possibly her love for Hyrule and especially Link that triggered this inside of her. This might be why she was only able to activate it when Link was almost killed by a Guardian. Or, she may have just had this power from birth because of her simply being part of the Triforce. Another possibility is that she did inherit it from another Zelda, but since she was a different person, the Triforce gave her slightly different powers than her ancestors.
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