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Emperor Emhyr var Emreis... or, to those on more intimate terms with him: "the White Flame Dancing on the Graves of his Foes".
~ Yennefer of Vengerberg
Your motives don't interest me, only results.
~ Emhyr var Emreis

Emhyr var Emreis is the main antagonist of the Witcher franchise.

He was the emperor of Nilfgaard, the most powerful nation to ever exist in the human world. After being fooled into believing a false prophecy regarding his descendants conquering the world, Emhyr attempts to marry his own daughter in order to be the parent of the son who was meant to rule the world. Disgusted by this, Queen Pavetta, Emhyr's wife, sent their daughter away in order to prevent her from suffering such a horrid fate. This ultimately spurred Emhyr to begin a nationwide manhunt for his daughter Ciri, beginning the events of the Witcher Saga.

He serves as the main antagonist of The Witcher Saga, appearing as the main antagonist of the books and as the overarching antagonist of the games. He also serves as the overarching antagonist of the 2019 Netflix adaptation of The Witcher.

He is publicly favorable to the Elder Race, unlike to the Northern Monarchs.

He was voiced by Charles Dance, who also played Tywin LannisterAlan JonahMaster Vampire, and Mr. Benedict.


In books Emhyr's father was murdered and Emhyr himself was cursed into a monster by an usurper to take over Nilfgaardian throne. Emhyr married Pavetta, princess of Cintra what resulted in birth of Ciri. The curse was lifted thanks to Geralt of Rivia. An insidious wizard Vilgefortz fooled him by a prophecy accord to to which Emhyr's daughter is supposed to rule half of the world the her son a whole world. Emhyr planned to marry own daughter, but Pavetta hid her. Outraged Emhyr threw his wife to sea after learning this. Emhyr returned to Nilfgaard and reclaimed his status of emperor by a revolution. The emperor conquered Cintra in search for Ciri. He started Second Northern War against Temeria, Redania, Keadven and Aedirn. General Menno Cohron lead his invasion forces. Despite the generals successes he died in battle of Brenna. The emperor lost the war.

In Witcher 2 Emhyr was the bigger bad. He sent Letho, Serrit and Egan to assassinate kings of North, so he could easily conquer the whole North. He also sent Shilard Fitz-Oesterlen as his diplomat to bring some nobles of the North on his side.

In Witcher 3 Emhyre is a villainous supporting character. He took over both Aedirn and Temeria during the Third Northern War. He's also in search for his daughter Ciri, who's said to be returned and enlists Geralt of Rivia's help to find her and bring her to him. By Birna Bran he tried to take over Skellige. Depending on whether King Radovid lives or dies, Nilfgaard may either lose or win the war. If Nilfgaard loses the war against the North, Emhyr will be assassinated by his subjects who'd been plotting against him. If Nilfgaard wins the war however, he'll turn his attention towards the dissent at home and wipe out the traitors with extreme prejudice.


           Witcher Villains

Bonhart | Emhyr var Emreis | Philippa Eilhart | Vilgefortz

The Witcher
Azar Javed | Jacques de Aldersberg | Professor | Roderick de Wett | Salamandra | Savolla

The Witcher 2: Assassin of Kings
Bernard Loredo | Dethmold | Henselt | Letho of Gulet | Lucius Maravel | Radovid V the Stern | Ravanen Kimbolt | Serrit & Auckes | Sheala de Tancarville | Shilard Fitz-Oesterlen | Stennis

The Witcher 3: Wild Hunt
Bernard Tulle | Birna Bran | Bloody Baron | Caleb Menge | Caranthir | The Crones | Cyprian Wiley | Earl | Eredin | Hubert Rejk | Imlerith | John Verdun | Morkvarg | Nathaniel | Nithral | Wild Hunt

Hearts of Stone
The Caretaker | Ewald Borsodi | Gaunter O'Dimm | Horst Borsodi | Olgierd von Everec

Blood and Wine
Dettlaff van der Eretein | Orianna | Rapunzel | Redbeard | Syanna | Unseen Elder | Wicked Witch

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