Elijah is a very attractive, positive, quirky and upbeat person. He always tries to see the good in people and tries to be a friend to everyone. He lives by a code of honor and morality that has been with him since he was a witch. As he told Elena in All My Children, he valued qualities such as compassion, honor and virtue long before his mother turned him into a vampire. Having learned to take care of his family over the years and being naturally responsible, Elijah had developed into a very free-spirited, mature and independent person. Elijah was close with his half-brother Klaus and his sister Rebekah, he was also a little close with his youngest brother Henrik and he was devastated after he was killed by werewolves.
Elijah is described as unpredictable, overprotective and stubborn, but also very kind, intelligent, selfless, empathetic, compassionate, and friendly. It has been noted by Rebekah herself that as Elijah was always moral, his morality was only amplified as an Original. He is thus known as being the most moral of his siblings, apart from Finn, though recently Elijah has proven himself to have long since exceeded even his older brother's morality. He is extremely loyal and has a loving and forgiving nature but can easily prove himself to be very manipulative, though he is far more forgiving than Klaus. He strongly believes in trust, honesty and loyalty and whenever he would give his word to someone, he would keep it, as he has said "I'm a man of my word". Only when he realized he was lied to would Elijah break a deal, as they have theoretically proven themselves to go against him, such as in his deal with Sophie Deveraux. He is very praiseworthy, respectful, and admirable for human life, which is unseen in many other vampires and is normally very reluctant to kill anyone when unnecessary. Elijah has an open-minded and optimistic personality. When he meets Elena, he respects her bravery and willingness to endanger herself for her loved ones.
Elijah is most characterized by his devotion to his family, holding his family above all else, and will even, though with no pleasure at all and some distaste, commit immoral acts for them. He serves as the main voice of reason among his siblings, though when pushed he can prove controlling towards his siblings, as he allowed Klaus to dagger them whenever they needed to be put in line, albeit unlike Klaus, Elijah admits he was wrong to treat them that way and regrets it. Having been the only sibling whose humanity remains staunch, Elijah strove to save Rebekah and Klaus from the darkness they have surrounded their hearts with and was known to particularly be devoted to redeeming his half-brother, having constantly stood by his side, though Hope's birth made Elijah prioritize her more than his brother.
He is also known for speaking his mind and having a fierce temper, though unlike his father and Klaus, Elijah could control his temper. Elijah, being such an honorable man, absolutely despises those who break their word, shown when he killed Trevor for betraying him and imprisoned Katherine for her own betrayal. Though not arrogant, like Klaus, Elijah can show a rather great amount of self-confidence but this hardly affects his fighting efficiency, and pride, as he has little tolerance for those that disrespect him. Though not above showing mercy to those individuals, Elijah can easily be violent and even murderous, as shown by how he left Damon crippled for disrespecting him and when Marcel disobeyed and disrespected Elijah, he was about to kill Marcel and only killed Thierry when he tried to interfere, which he callously told Marcel would be the last time he shows mercy to him and should he dare defy his will again, his life is forfeit.
Elijah in general is a very emotionally hardened character and has difficulty at times handling and accepting certain emotions. This is evident when after losing his family because of Klaus, he turns his sadness and pain into revenge against his half-brother. Elijah is also seen to be uncomfortable and has difficulty accepting romantic feelings, particularly towards Hayley. However, despite this, Elijah does believe in love but also believes that, at least for him, it is rare. He even mentioned that for the thousand years the he has lived, he has only been in love twice.
Elijah is noted for his ability to control his more violent urges, and rarely ever so much allows his face to show its vampiric features. However, after his mother's assault on his mind, revealing the Red Door - a mental barrier of sorts that he hides the fallout, and even memories, of his most merciless deeds behind - he began to lose control and give in to these urges, despite consciously trying to control them.
After the birth of Hope, Elijah's priorities have begun to shift, to the point where, when Klaus (supposedly) began spiralling out of control after the threat of Dahlia made came, Elijah stabbed Klaus with a golden dagger, leaving him daggered in a coffin, all to prevent him from bringing danger to Hope with his (apparent) violent lashing out; this action of his lead to his deserved daggering of Papa Tunde's Blade at the hands of Klaus.
Elijah has failed time and again to learn from his mistakes, particularly from his relationship with Klaus, he has constantly betrayed his half-brother, which has put a massive strain on their relationship, however, after he daggered Klaus and allowed Hayley to tried to take Hope away from him, there reaches a breaking point, as it became the last straw for Klaus.
Elijah keeps on disregarding the fact that betraying his half-brother has consequences, like when Klaus kills his half-brother's girlfriend Gia; in retaliation for allowing Hayley to tried and take Hope away from him, and daggered Klaus to prevent him from stopping Hayley, from leaving New Orleans with their daughter.
Powers and Abilities
- Advanced Original Vampire Physiology: As an Original Vampire, Elijah held tremendous physical power far greater than most other supernatural beings, he was one of the most powerful supernatural beings in the TVD/TO universe. However, he shows an unusual amount of power for a regular Original, being a challenge to even the likes of Klaus and Marcel as the Original Hybrid and Upgraded Original. It was noted that Elijah's Red Door could potentially made him even more powerful than Klaus.
- Super Strength: Natural for an Original Vampire, Elijah had a tremendous level of superhuman strength that allowed him to effortlessly overpower, severely harm and kill vampires, evolved werewolves and humans, dismembering, decapitating or extracting their hearts with ease. Elijah showed himself to be a class of his own: He was able to easily pin down Rebekah, a fellow Original, and hold her when she was inflicted with a curse that made her stronger while only losing his grip when she caught him off-guard. Elijah could even contend with Klaus as the Original Hybrid, being able to trade blows with Klaus and is strong enough to send him flying with his attacks and break out of his grip and restrain him. He even managed to toss Marcel as an Upgraded Original off the floor and lift him with a single hand despite being outmatched.
- Super Speed, Agility and Reflexes: Natural for an Original Vampire, Elijah had a vast level of superhuman speed, agility and reflexes that allowed him to easily cover great distances and jump incredibly high without much trouble. In conjunction with his unnatural original strength, Elijah's preference for methodical combat made speed and reflexes the forte he relied on the most. He was able to effortlessly outpace multiple ancient vampires of the Strix, taking them down in a blur, and could even keep up with and outmaneuver Klaus, easily reacting to Klaus's reckless attacks and gaining the upper hand with swift and graceful moves, at one point catching Klaus completely off-guard to neutralize him. He is also able to easily catch the arrows shot by the wolves.
- Super Durability, Stamina, and Endurance: Elijah, to a greater extent than other Originals, is extremely durable and resilient and has vast levels of superhuman stamina to allow him to exert his superhuman physical powers to the fullest for prolonged periods of time without any fatigue. He was able to take powerful blows from the likes of Marcel and Klaus that easily winded and battered Rebekah and Kol and quickly rebound and continue fighting. His pain tolerance was such that he didn't even flinch when taking off his daylight ring to explode himself and was shown to be able to come out of massive explosions like the one he did on Finn and to protect Jackson with no harm to himself. Elijah was able to fight through Marcel's entire army without any fatigue and was even shown to be able to quickly rebound from the bites he suffered from the wolves and managed to walk all the way to St Anne's Church, seeing things clearly. After being cured, he restlessly navigated the Cemetery along with Klaus until they found Hope and fought the witches with no strain of exhaustion.
- Bloodlust Resistance: Unlike most vampires, Elijah has complete control of his blood lust, which he perfected over the years of being a vampire to the point that his vampire veins have not been shown often since he was introduced, even when he requested to speak to Davina despite being neutralized for three months and having his skin color become very darkened from lack of blood; as a result, he was able to talk to her without craving her blood.
- Telepathy: As an Original, Elijah has greater telepathic powers than regular vampires. He is able to compel vampires and read the minds of others.
- Combat Mastery: Having been rigoriously trained in and excelled in the arts of combat since he was a human, considering how Elijah's skill allowed him to earn Mikael's pride and avoid his father's ire and having seen countless battles, holding a great deal of experience, Elijah is an extremely accomplished and formidable fighter. His fighting prowess ranks the greatest among his siblings, surpassing both Kol and Rebekah, and at least being much more composed and calm in battle than Klaus. As such, he has been seen to effortlessly defeat most foes and even easily defeat ancient vampires such as the Strix members, including Shen Min and Aya, though on both occasions he did have to put in genuine effort in outfighting them, albeit it must be noted he had a much easier time handling them than Hayley and Marcel, who in contrast could barely hold up against Shen Min, and Rebekah, who struggled to only stalemate Aya in her weakened state, and defeat entire armies such as Marcel's army and Fransesca's wolves without getting any scratch on himself. Elijah's prowess is mostly shown in his battles with Klaus: He delivered a vicious beating on Klaus in their first and second confrontations before getting overpowered, despite in their first having not fed on blood due to having just been freed, got the better of Klaus in their third and fourth fight and fought and matched Klaus to a stalemate in their fifth fight. Even when Klaus is calm and composed, Elijah has been shown to be still a difficult challenge, as Klaus could never outfight Elijah without difficulty despite still eventually winning in two of said fights. Elijah likewise could stand up to Marcel as an Upgraded Original, getting his own share in, despite ultimately losing.
- Intellectual Genius: His supernatural attributes aside, Elijah's greatest asset is his immense intellect, being the only Mikaelson capable of contending with and outsmarting Klaus, though he has also been outsmarted by Klaus at certain times.
- Master Strategist: Elijah's intelligence gave him a strong penchant for strategies and forming contingencies way ahead of time that has allowed him to match wits with and even outsmart Klaus. Notable examples of him outsmarting Klaus was when he easily saw through Klaus's vulgar promises and freed his siblings so they could overpower Klaus, predicted that Klaus would treat Davina ruthlessly and advise Marcel into saving her life, and when he only revealed the Golden Dagger at the last moment, on these occasions catching Klaus completely off-guard. During his conflict with Celeste, Elijah came up with a plan to corner her by having Monique Deveraux place her in her original body.
- Master Manipulator/Deceiver: Despite his dislike of doing so, Elijah could be very manipulative, able to trick Elena into revealing Esther's plans.
- Master Diplomat/Business Expertise: Elijah has also shown himself to be extremely skilled in diplomacy and well-versed in business fields, which aided him in his struggle for control over New Orleans: He was able to successfully establish, although only briefly, peace among the warring factions and thwart Fransesca's buying of buildings, highly irritating her.
- Master Leader: Elijah is an extremely skilled, charismatic and creative leader, displaying the ability to command respect even from those who opposed him and inspire loyalty in them to follow his plans. This was shown by how he coordinated the main gang into a nearly successful attempt to kill Klaus and was able to take over Klaus's duties as the "King" of New Orleans, managing it responsibly and inspiring the Factions to, albeit temporarily, make peace, with even Diego commenting that as much as he despised Elijah, he was at least a better and more reasonable leader than Marcel and only turned against him when he killed Thierry.
- Master Investigator: An extremely perceptive man, Elijah is able to discern a great deal of whatever or whoever presented to him after only a few keen observations. He was able to identify Elena masquerading as Katherine when they met at Pennsylvania after seeing her daylight ring and was also the first to discern that his former lover, Celeste, was in fact inhabiting the body of Sabine.
- While no match for his father as Mikael has always been a stronger and more experienced Viking warrior than any of his children, as Michael Narducci confirms that the reason why Mikael can easily overwhelm Elijah and even Klaus in a fight is due to his human strength and skill being greater, it is safe to assume that Elijah, having clearly been the most excelling in Mikael's training as Mikael himself admits to being proud of Elijah's skill, is able to display noticeably greater levels of physical prowess and skill than Rebekah, Kol and Finn because he was the closest to Mikael's level when they were all humans and thus the strongest of his siblings when they had been humans. While Rebekah was always easily outmatched by Klaus and Kol put up a greater struggle but was still defeated and struggled to hold up to Klaus as long as he did, Elijah seems to have no trouble keeping up with Klaus in a fight, as he has constantly displayed superior fighting techniques and the strength and speed needed to contend with his Hybrid brother when he wasn't in his usual mood, usually having dominated and even ended the fight victorious or at least stalemated Klaus, and even when Klaus is calm and composed, he is still a difficult challenge. It should also be noted that as no match for his father as he was and being unable to replicate the same success with which Klaus fought Mikael with, he has at least temporarily stood his own and landed some hits. However, when Klaus is using his werewolf powers, it is when Elijah can no longer keep up with Klaus, as Klaus easily bests Elijah using Lycanthrope Enhancement.
- It was clear that Mikael would have trained Elijah to resist and overcome pain and apparent that he excelled in this aspect the most as Elijah has shown the greatest amount of pain tolerance out of his siblings: For example, he showed enhanced resistance to werewolf bites in that whereas Rebekah was left paralyzed and unable to move until the next day after being bitten by wolves, Elijah was able to recover in a matter of minutes and walk all the way to the church, overcoming the illusions with sheer will. While still able to die due to the Beast's venom, he displayed greater resistance to it than Kol, maintaining his lucidity. He was even shown to resist Papa Tunde's Blade better than Klaus, as he was shown to be conscious whereas Klaus was completely unconscious and bed-ridden for an entire day and was able to quickly recover from it, as only hours later, he was shown to have recovered at least enough to be able to walk and talk normally and had enough strength to easily toss Marcel away.
- Elijah can be considered to be the voice of reason and the keeper of peace out of the Mikaelsons as he always sought to uphold the Always and Forever vow. However, while he was easily the hero in the Vampire Diaries as all he did was to save his family from Klaus, in the Originals, Elijah becomes more of the deuteragonist and antihero as he has proven he is not above going against Klaus. In the first season, Elijah is still more of a hero than Klaus as he never sought more power and greed and only wanted to preserve the family and redeem Klaus. He took up the mantle of the hero most prominently to fight Klaus to save Rebekah's life and tried to warn Klaus that the moonlight rings he sought to provide the werewolves will only make them turn against him. On both accounts, Elijah proved himself to be correct, though sadly he failed to prevent the disastrous events of the ending of the first season but Klaus openly acknowledged Elijah was right. It was only in the second season that Elijah began to embrace the role of an antihero at the end, as though he was insistent on defending and sticking to Klaus, he was tricked into believing Aiden was killed by Klaus and thus this was the final straw, leading Elijah to dagger Klaus.