31

It's a slightly modified version of the Sephirothic Tree of Life as defined by Robert Fludd, who was a physician with interests in Kabbalah and other religious mysticisms. The globes (called Sephiroths) are thought of as being ways in which the universe shows its truths to humanity. They're also printed with the words God used in creating the universe in ...


31

The main setting of FMA is in Amestris, which is a pastiche of various European countries, in particular, England. (See the answers to this question for more details.) We can readily see that English is used in-universe, for instance, when Hawkeye corresponds with Roy, writing in vol. 19 of the manga: Note that many character names are not actually "English"...


24

Firstly, it's worth noting that the difference in their strength is perhaps not as drastic as it appears. Though Al's body has essentially wasted away, you can see that Ed's right arm is significantly weaker than his left arm as he did not have it during during the series (or for several years before), in which he had a lot of physical improvement. ...


24

It appears that in the Fullmetal Alchemist universe, those who are state alchemists are not necessarily in the military hierarchy per se, even if they have a rank equivalent to major. Yes, there are alchemists such as Mustang, Basque Gran, Armstrong, etc. who are active members of the military, but there are also other state alchemists who, while involved ...


22

There are a few different things to address here. First off, Edward and Alphonse are fully human. This is actually addressed when Alphonse first finds out about his dad's origins. Essentially, he contains a philosopher's stone within himself, but he is still biologically human. Click to enlarge. Second, remember that all humans are philosopher's stones. ...


21

Warning: Unmarked spoilers follow. It seems there are four different components you're addressing here, so I'll make the differences for each one clear. Van Hohenheim Van Hohenheim, also known as slave #23, was a citizen of Xerxes and a regular human being who was employed by King Xerxes' alchemist. This alchemist was an experimenter, and managed to create ...


19

After searching everywhere for the day looking this up before someone else finds the answer, he appears to be Mobuta Mobuo. He is actually a background character that was actually placed in their as a joke as said in an interview with Arakawa Hiromu in the Perfect Guidebook (Hagaren Kenkyujo DX). He was also a gag character in the Mangas and hardly anyone ...


19

This is probably difference in translation. In the manga it is made pretty clear. The entire conversation is about Al only. Look at the following transmutations and the sacrifices. Ed sacrificed his leg and Al his body for their Mother. Ed sacrificed his hand for Al's soul. Al gave his soul for Ed's hand. Ed gives up his transmutation gate for Al's body and ...


18

Unmarked spoilers for both Brotherhood and the 2003 series follow. You're missing a key bit of information: they did gain something for their loss[1], just as Izumi did. The boys gained the knowledge of what was beyond the gate. Unparalleled truths of alchemy reside beyond the gate, and no mortals are ever allowed access to it—unless they commit the ...


18

It's called the Flamel (yes, named after Nicolas Flamel, purported to be an alchemist who sought the Philosopher's Stone). It is most noticeably similar to the symbol of Hermes, a god of alchemy, and also the Rod of Asclepius, which you may recognize from ambulances as the EMS symbol. It is not a religious symbol, nor is it ever explained to have a ...


18

Edward couldn't affix his mother's soul, because she was already long dead. It isn't made so obvious, but actually a few years pass between the mother's death, and then the boys training with Izumi, before they try and resurrect her. He was able to attach Al's soul to the armour because it was still present, in the body of the creature they tried to ...


17

Alchemy is just like most skills; the process of learning it is arduous, and some people will naturally be better than others. From a young age, Edward and Alphonse Elric were exposed to alchemy, especially as their father had been a brilliant alchemist and left a gargantuan collection of books behind for the kids to read. This, however, was in addition to ...


16

I'm going to answer based on the manga, because I still have not seen the Brotherhood anime. I think this is just fine, as it seems that the anime streamlined the ending a bit. This is going to be spoilerific, but scarcely more than the question itself, so I'm not putting all of it in spoiler tags. Let's start at the core of the issue. You say that Father "...


16

The FmA Wikia seems to indicate that the picture is Tree of Life (also known as World Tree or Tree of Emanations or Arber Sephiroteca), as described by a 17th century English Paracelsian physician Robert Fludd. I'm having a hard time finding additional information about the diagram, but the EvaGeeks Wiki has a page that describes the different parts in more ...


15

Hiromu Arakawa, the mangaka, states that she was not influenced greatly by any specific country, but rather a collection of European countries during the Industrial Revolution, as stated in the answers to this question, sourced back to an interview in Newtype USA, January 2006. While I'm sure Arakawa took inspiration from her own country's history, too, the ...


15

Let's take a look at the events at the end of FMA - I'm using the manga. Hohenheim offers to use himself to get Alphonse back, out of paternal duty. Ed refuses because what happened to him and Alphonse was their own responsibility. Notice that in FMA, there's this sort of emphasis on personal responsibility for one's actions (e.g. Riza's comments about ...


15

I do not know if this was covered in Brotherhood, but in the manga the name Van Hohenheim was given to slave 23 by This happened in episode 40, or chapter 74 in the manga. Fun fact, Hohenheim was first going to be called Theophrastus Bombastus Van Hohenheim, but the name was too long for him to remember, so a shorter version was chosen. As I understand it ...


15

The two continuities As you may know, there are essentially two versions of the Fullmetal Alchemist anime - the 2003 version, called simply "Fullmetal Alchemist", and the 2009 version, called "Fullmetal Alchemist: Brotherhood". The 2003 version deviates from the manga part-way through, while the 2009 version sticks to the manga all the ...


15

503 day is supposed to be the 3rd of May (5/03), which is the Edward x Winry day, or Edwin day in short. There are two reasons for this coming into existence. First, there's a jeans brand called Edwin and one of their logos contains the number 503. Second, when Winry goes to Central City she's in room 503 of the hotel.


14

I'm not completely sure if my answer is any good, but I feel like it was worth putting this out. We do indeed see that being blind would have prevented Roy from staying in the military (according to the manga), and that in theory he could have regained his sight by giving up his gate. But as pointed out in the question he would "have no way back". This ...


14

They set fire to their house in chapter 24 of the manga: As you can see, after they set fire to their house Ed says, "There is no turning back." This is also stated in episode 11 of Brotherhood, which is when they set fire to their house in the anime, there is a similar statement: Edward: There is no turning back for us now, huh? Edward reiterates this ...


14

Edward's actions when he recovers Alphonse indicate that he probably would not want to get his alchemy back, much less do so by using a philosopher's stone. Ling offers Edward a philosopher's stone to use to recover Alphonse. Edward refuses because he and Alphonse had promised not to use a philosopher's stone (and more generally, human lives) to restore ...


13

Essentially, after the completion of the loss of an arm or other limb, there is a raw set of nerves poking out (not literally, but you know what I mean). These are what connect to the automail's circuits. As stated by Vic, all of these nerves are stimulated simultaneously, causing a severe, severe shock to the person. This pain is shown to be more obvious ...


13

No, this isn't generally the case. Greed (both pre- and post-"death") has the ability to modify the carbon in his body to be rock-hard. This is not reflected in the fourth circle of Dante's Inferno nor in the Bible as far as I can tell. Pride has the power of the shadows and of omnipresence. As far as I know, pride is generally represented Biblically as a ...


13

The correct color of the watch is silver. A popular fan scanlation of the manga (volume 1, chapter 3, page 19) incorrectly states that the pocket watch is gold in color. Third panel down on the left: "The president's crest! The hexagram gold watch!" The correct color is in fact silver, according to the raw version. Here is the same panel, taken from the ...


13

@Madara basically hit the nail on the head here, but I thought I'd elaborate a bit. Unmarked spoilers follow. Father wants people making philosopher's stones for his goals. He has his end goal of the Nationwide Transmutation Circle, and he has a plan to get it. This plan involves the military laboratories (especially lab #5), as well as waging wars (such ...


13

Yes, they could... sort of. As Scar mentions in episode 5, the only requirement is for the person to produce a circle. Izumi states that this is what lets the transmutation energy flow (or "power", depending on your sub/dub). Most alchemists draw transmutation circles, but those who have seen beyond the Gate of Truth instead create their own circle ...


12

Gluttony was created for the sole purpose of being a portal of Truth. Father was attempting to create a way to access the so-called "non-reality" (beyond the Gate) without paying a toll; essentially, he wanted to entirely bypass Truth so that he could access all alchemical knowledge within the Gate. However, Father is not omnipotent; he was unable to create ...


12

There are quite a few differences, actually. The "original", or the "first one" is an entirely different storyline from the manga. The manga was the original thing, so most people hate the first FMA series. A few differences between the two anime series are: The Storyline The idea behind the Homunculi The Homunculi's appearance Lust has a black dress ...


12

The creation is never explained in excruciating detail. However, we do know that Homunculus was originally part of the entity within the gate (God, essentially, the being who regulates all alchemical exchanges). Through an unknown process, Van Hohenheim's master was able to isolate the knowledge within God. He was able to give it an existence through the ...


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