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I don't mind dying as long as it means the rest of my family will be safe... Killua will suffer for the rest of his life. And I will live on forever... in Killua's heart...!!"
~ Illumi Zoldyck
Now I can tell you, that you would not make a good Hunter. Your calling is as an assassin. There's no fire in you, just darkness. It sustains you, drains you of any desire. Your only joy is in causing death, and even that is fleeting. That is how Dad and I molded you.
~ Illumi Zoldyck to Killua.

Illumi Zoldyck is the eldest child of Silva and Kikyo Zoldyck and is one of the main antagonists in the anime series Hunter x Hunter. Illumi currently seems to be the only person that Hisoka claims as his friend, although their relationship is unconventional. He serves as the final antagonist of the Hunter Exam arc, a major antagonist in Yorknew City arc, and the main antagonist of the 13th Hunter Chairman Election arc.

In Japanese, he was voiced by Urara Takano in the 1999 anime and Masaya Matsukaze in the 2011 anime. In English, he was voiced by Victor Atelevich in the 1999 anime and Chris Hackney in the 2011 anime.


Illumi appears expressionless, his face like an emotionless mask. He has very long jet black hair, usually combed behind his head as well as, very large, dark eyes. To disguise himself as Gittarackur, Illumi uses large round head pins to reconstruct his facial structure, and even voice, beyond recognition. The pins in his chest seem to affect the muscles in his body, as he looks more slender without them.

When he was younger, Illumi's hair only reached his shoulders. He wore long sleeves with a shirt underneath, as well as grey pants.


Illumi, for the most part, displays very little expression. In contrast to his expressionless demeanor, Illumi often speaks in a somewhat joyful and absent-minded tone. He is generally a stony, ruthless person with an extremely cold way of thinking, reflecting only his interest. Still, he holds a twisted and overprotective form of love for his younger brother, Killua; this manifests to the point that he used his Nen ability to control Killua and ensure he survives and obeys.

He and his father raised Killua to believe that the only thing sustaining him was darkness, and that he could only obtain joy in causing the death of others. To ensure that Killua would live to carry on the family business, and as a means of protecting his little brother, Illumi implanted a needle in Killua's brain, forcing the latter to run from battles he wasn't sure he could win.

He also has an unusual friendship with Hisoka, although it is unclear as to how it developed. Illumi once came to the aid of Hisoka by standing for him as a double in the Phantom Troupe's hideout while Hisoka attempted to find Chrollo. However, when Hisoka asked Illumi would it be okay if he killed Killua, Illumi displayed a horrifying side of himself and asked if Hisoka wanted to die then and there - he acted very similar to how Hisoka did himself after Illumi was opting whether or not to kill Gon, whom he sees as a threat due to his closeness with Killua, during the Hunter Exam, albeit on a much lesser expense.

Illumi cares for most of the Zoldyck family members, with Killua appearing to be his favorite. He is willing to handle Alluka's power, even if it costs him his life. He has stated, however, that family members are not allowed to kill during an inner mission (a mission where there is internal conflict), but insinuates that he would be fine with killing Alluka and does not consider Alluka a member of the family.

Tsubone implies that Illumi's sinister ambition to control Alluka's power even caused him to stray from the path of an assassin


Illumi is the eldest son of Silva and Kikyo, and was raised from birth in the art of assassination. He trained Killua to become an assassin. Illumi was sent by his mother to watch over Killua, who also entered the Hunter Exam.

In order to control the development and actions of his younger brother, as well as protect him, prior to the series Illumi inserted a needle into Killua's brain, forcing him to run away from the battles he wasn't sure he could win.

Powers and Abilities

Illumi has all the benefits granted by his status as a Hunter. Furthermore, as a member of the Zoldyck Family, he has vast wealth and capable underlings at his disposal. His family name alone is enough to scare the ones that know what it is associated to. Illumi has been trained since birth in assassination techniques. Hisoka rates Illumi's overall strength and Nen as 95 points, which makes him considerably stronger than some members of the Zodiacs.

Thanks to his training, he possesses rare abilities such as strong resistance to poison, high tolerance to electricity, great agility and physical strength, and advanced armed and unarmed combat techniques. He was able to single-handedly wipe out a squadron of rookie and pro Hunters before any had the time to press the emergency button. He is also a very skilled impersonator. He might have superhuman control over his body, as he told Hisoka he was going to sleep for five days.

  • Enhanced Speed: While the true extent of Illumi's physical abilities is unknown, he is at least fast enough to run through a crowd and stick his needles into multiple targets without being noticed. His speed allowed him to kill a group of Hunters before any of them could ask for help.
  • Immense Tolerance to Pain: Illumi does not flinch when Gon breaks his arm; afterward, he exhibits no visible distress from the pain.
  • High Intelligence: Illumi is able to formulate accurate predictions as seen concerning Alluka's power, since he was able to completely understand the method in which Killua's wishes were granted with no further consequences. He has also foreseen Killua's movements from the moment he took Alluka to heal Gon, assuring his high deductive intelligence.
  • Master Thrower: Illumi can throw multiple needles with high accuracy, always hitting the target with their point, despite them not appearing balanced. He can even pierce rock-hard materials with them, possible due to some sort of emitted Nen being attached to the needles themselves, however it may be due to his sheer strength.


I will kill you. Right here, right now.
~ Illumi Zoldyck to Hisoka after he (Hisoka) asked if he could kill Killua.
Killing within the family of prohibited. But if you wish "it", that's different. Now then, are you ready to do me in?
~ Illumi


  • The Official Hunter × Hunter Character and World Databook has spelled Illumi as "Yellmi Zaoldyck".
  • It was hinted that Illumi knew Chrollo Lucilfer before the Yorknew City arc started.
  • Illumi may come from an Italian word ("illuminato") that means "enlightened", the opposite of Illumi Zoldyck's personality. However, his name may be related to the Illuminati, whose goal is to control the world. Illumi is also a Manipulator, which fits with the Illuminati's iconic description.


           Hunter x Hunter.png Villains

Phantom Troupe
Chrollo Lucilfer | Bonolenov | Feitan | Franklin Bordeau | Illumi Zoldyck | Kalluto Zoldyck | Machi Komacine | Nobunaga Hazama | Pakunoda | Phinks | Shalnark | Shizuku | Uvogin

Chimera Ants
Chimera Ant Queen | Meruem | Shaiapouf | Menthuthuyoupi | Neferpitou

Zoldyck Family
Illumi Zoldyck | Kalluto Zoldyck | Silva Zoldyck

Hisoka Morow | Genthru | Pariston Hill | Tserriednich Hui Guo Rou