One Piece: The mystery of the Will of D.

Monkey D. Luffy, the main character of the One Piece series and one of the very few D. carriers (Image via Eiichiro Oda/Shueisha/Toei Animation, One Piece)
Monkey D. Luffy, the main character of the One Piece series and one of the very few D. carriers (Image via Eiichiro Oda/Shueisha/Toei Animation, One Piece)

Eiichiro Oda's record-breaking masterpiece, One Piece, is nearing its end within the next few years. The manga is currently in the final events of the Wano Arc, which marks a milestone for the endgame of the series.

Even though the manga is entering its final phase, some of the questions and mysteries in One Piece are yet to be answered and resolved. Eiichiro Oda is incredibly skilled at building up plot points that can capture the readers and keep them interested. This has led fans to create plenty of theories about certain characters and events in the One Piece world.

Among the many mysteries of the series, the purpose of the Will of D. is widely recognized as one of the most thrilling facts to the fans. More than analyzing theories that One Piece fans have created over the years, this thread aims to enlist what is currently known about the secret of the D., which Eiichiro Oda is yet to reveal.

Disclaimer: This article contains major spoilers from the One Piece manga up to Chapter 1055.


The initial "D", one of the main unresolved mysteries in One Piece

Will of D. is a very rare trait

In the One Piece universe, one of the rarest traits is possessing Conqueror Haki, a natural-born ability to impose one's own will on the others. If there are very few users of the basic stage of Conqueror Haki, even fewer are the ones who can upgrade this power to its advanced stage. Out of the millions of characters, there are less than ten individuals who are known to be able to do this.

Ten is also the exact number of people who are confirmed owners of the initial D. in their name and carriers of its mysterious will. Among them, the first who comes to mind is Monkey D. Luffy, the protagonist of the One Piece series, a carefree and friendly guy who fans love for his likable behavior and his unwavering determination.


Other characters who have the D. in their name

Others known to have the initial "D." in their names are:

  • Monkey D. Garp
  • Monkey D. Dragon
  • Gol D. Roger
  • Portuguese D. Rouge
  • Portuguese D. Ace
  • Rocks D. Xebec
  • Marshall D. Teach
  • Jaguar D. Saul
  • Trafalgar D. Water Law.

In their own way, all of them are very important characters who influenced the events of the One Piece series.

Garp, the Marine Hero, is Luffy's father. Dragon, the leader of the Revolutionary Army, is his father. Roger, the captain of the Roger Pirates, was the first man to find the One Piece and become the Pirate King. His wife, Rouge, died from childbirth after carrying their son Ace in her womb for more than 20 months.

Sau was a Marine vice-admiral who died protecting Nico Robin's escape from Ohara. Trafalgar Law is, just like Luffy, one of the Supernovas from the Worst Generation of rookies. Xebec was such a dangerous pirate that Roger and Garp needed to join forces together to defeat him. "Blackbeard" Teach is one of the Yonko and the only known wielder of two Devil Fruits at the same time.


Will of D. and Inherited Will

The Will of D. seems to be strongly linked with the Inherited Will, a further concept that includes passing on one's dreams, goals, and ideals to future generations so that they can fulfill them. Those who had faith in their will to be inherited accepted their mortality and entrusted their dreams to the people of the next era. This behavior seems akin to D. carriers - they accept their fate and do not fear death.


The D. and Gol D. Roger

During the One Piece series, the D. carriers are often considered heralds of future big events and dangers. Roger, Rayleigh, Oden, and the other members of the Roger Pirates discovered the meaning of the D. when they visited Laugh Tale, the fated island where the One Piece treasure lies. For this reason, the World Government tried to hide the D. in Roger's name.

Many years ago, Oda was asked about the meaning of the D. in the SBS corner, a feature where he receives questions from fans and answers them directly. On the occasion, the author refused to give a proper explanation of what the D. really signifies, hinting toward a bigger mystery that will only be revealed at an appropriate time in the manga.

The first manga reference to the Will of D. was in chapter 154, where Kureha, the old doctress from Drum Island, revealed that the true name of the Pirate King was not Gold, but Gol D. Roger. Afterward, the D. was mentioned many times in different conversations, but never fully explained. More than giving answers, new questions were raised.

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Commonly shared traits among the D. carriers

All known D. carriers share a deep desire for freedom and strong faith in their capabilities and destiny. Most people who have this initial in their name have no clue about its meaning or purpose. Both Trafalgar D. Water Law and Jaguar D. Saul implied that the D. is passed between generations of the same family.

All D. possessors have strong charisma and naturally draw people to them, attracting friends and allies. They can even befriend their enemies. Most D. carriers have proven themselves to be able to withstand incredible degrees of pain and physical and mental damage, surrendering to death only when they understand it is truly unavoidable.


Not even death itself can stop the Will of D.

Those who have D. accept their fate and succumb to death only when they find it is the right time. For this reason, they are prone to smile and laugh right before the moment they die, or they suppose they have no other possible outcome other than forthcoming death. Marshall D. Teach is the only D. carrier who has rejected death and has shown fear of it, panicking and begging for mercy when he thought he was about to die.

Also, Gol D. Roger is the only one to know what the D. stands for, among those who bear this initial. He fully explained the meaning of the D. to Whitebeard, but their conversation was not shown to the readers. Whitebeard stated that killing someone who has the D. to sever their bloodline would not stop their will, which would eventually be inherited and fulfilled.

One of the people with the most knowledge about the D. was Donquixote Rocinante, Trafalgar Law's mentor, and Donquixote Doflamingo's younger brother. He stated that those with that initial in their name are part of the Family of the D. and have a reputation for being the natural enemies of Gods. With "Gods", he meant world nobles who are hailed as gods, the Celestial Dragons.


Final thoughts

From the way the two subjects were mentioned together, there seems to be a connection between the Will of D. and the One Piece. The Will of D. also appears to have some links to the Void Century. This shows how complex and intertwined One Piece's plot is.

After entering its endgame, One Piece is finally ready to start giving fans answers to their questions. With the Will of D. and many other mysteries that are yet to be revealed, there is no doubt this wonderful series is not ending soon. The moment of the final curtain on the greatest adventure ever is yet to come.