Animated Character Database

Ginrei Kuchiki (朽木 銀嶺, Kuchiki Ginrei) is Byakuya Kuchiki's grandfather. Over 100 years ago, he was the captain of the 6th Division and the 27th Head of the Kuchiki Clan until being succeeded by Byakuya in both positions. His lieutenant was his son, Sōjun Kuchiki.


He has the appearance of an elderly man with slate gray eyes, a gray mustache, and long gray hair. He wears the standard captain uniform along with a white scarf made by the master weaver, Tsujishirō Kuroemon III. The scarf is made from Ginpaku Kazahana no Uzuginu (銀白風花の紗, Silks of the Silverwhite Wildflower) and is a family heirloom that is handed down from generation to generation and is given to each Kuchiki Clan head. The scarf alone is worth enough to buy ten mansions in Seireitei. He wears a short-sleeved captain's haori and fingerless black tekkō that covers the back of his hand and loop up to attach at the base of his fingers. He also wears black mala beads around his hakama-himo.


Ginrei Kuchiki is the 27th head of the noble Kuchiki Clan, one of the four great noble families in Soul Society. As such, Ginrei acts in an aristocratic manner — he seems always serene and apathetic towards other people. He is also extremely calm, and is noticeably quiet, rarely speaking unless to make his intentions known or make a point. He is noted at being extremely patient and not given to rash actions and disdains it as a flaw in others. He believes that power must be respected and mastered and that those incapable of knowing their own heart are not capable of mastery of their own power.

Ginrei is a very perceptive man and is fully aware of the limits of his abilities and can see the skill or potential in others and what they must do to attain that fullness of that potential. Ginrei strongly believes in law and order. As the head of one of the great noble families and as a captain in the Gotei 13, he always works hard for a peaceful society. He would sooner work within the confines of the system than engage in actions that would disrupt the balance of law, even if he believes that something is unjust or wrong.


Zanpakutō Unknown Tales arc (anime only)[]

Note: Events occurring in this arc are only in the anime and do not constitute canon material.


Click "show" to read the plot arc.

Ginrei was present several centuries ago during a rebellion that caused a civil war in Soul Society. He kept his son-in-law Kōga Kuchiki as somewhat of a protégé and grew concerned at his continued reliance on his Zanpakutō's power. He was present when Kōga was praised for his actions as helping to further the cause of the victory by Captain-Commander Yamamoto. He would later in his office ask Kōga why he would face the rebel forces alone to which he was told that Kōga believed that he would be able to handle the rebels with just his Zanpakutō and himself as combatants.

Upon hearing this, Ginrei told him that when one is granted great power, the most important part of mastering it is his heart. Kōga remains confused until Ginrei further explains that those who have great power must know how to control their own power, and sometimes be controlled by the power. In order to truly create such a relationship, it is necessary to have a strong heart that keeps one from becoming overconfident. He then told Kōga that he was well aware of how great his power was, but he still lacked the heart to master it. He later watched alongside Captain-Commander Yamamoto as Kōga achieves another victory against the rebels.

Afterwards in his office, Kōga gives his status report, but Ginrei keeps his back to him and doesn't respond. Later that day Ginrei is approached by his daughter who tells him of her concern that Kōga is changing; Ginrei tells her not to worry about him and that he is a smart man with power vastly superior to his own and that he only needs the time to fully understand that. Sometime later, Kōga is given leadership over a special contingent under the order of Captain-Commander Yamamoto. Upon informing Ginrei, he expected his father-in-law to be proud of him, but instead tells him not to dirty their family name. Ginrei goes on to tell him not to misinterpret the Captain-Commander's intentions.

Not long after becoming the head of this new special force, Kōga is set up by a faction on his side not wanting him to claim victory in the civil war. When they proceeded to frame him and arrest him, he stood to face them. Ginrei appeared and asked what had transpired; the faction leaders told him what "supposedly" took place, but Ginrei wasn't convinced. The testimony of one of the critically injured victims sealed Kōga's fate. Kōga then tries to explain his version of the events, but to no avail.

He prepared to fight, but Ginrei asked him stand down and accept imprisonment for the time being. Later that night, Ginrei approached an imprisoned Kōga telling him that a verdict has been decided. Kōga was to be suspended from his Gotei 13 Seat for the next 100 years, and that his Zanpakutō, Muramasa, is a threat to the peace of Soul Society, and thus its powers will be nullified. When Kōga asks Ginrei if he actually believes them, Ginrei states that he didn't believe any of the accusations against him, but he has to understand what is happening.

Ginrei states that those in position of power have a problem with his Zanpakutō and its ability. He further explains that they aren't afraid of Kōga himself, but of Muramasa getting out of control. Kōga was confused at this issue, but Ginrei explained that he told him before that a person with great power must have a strong heart. Kōga had been too confident and reliant with his Zanpakutō's powers, thus he has rushed into all his conflicts not realizing the repercussions of his actions. Ginrei told him that Captain-Commander Yamamoto was concerned he would lose control thus the reason he gave him the position as "Captain of the Secret Contingent". Kōga explains that he had been framed, but Ginrei notes that it was Kōga's own overconfidence that caused his current predicament. Ginrei then told the upset Kōga to calm himself as there was still time before the sentence was to be carried out and must be patient.

Ginrei leaves to find a way to diffuse the situation before it could get worse. Much to Ginrei's dismay, Kōga broke out of jail and killed the men responsible for his framing. Ginrei later found him and tried to pursue Kōga to pay for his crimes, but instead, Kōga had a mental breakdown, causing him to view all in Soul Society as people jealous of his power and enemies that must be killed. After Kōga's assault on Soul Society reached crisis levels, Ginrei worked with Yamamoto to finally seal Kōga away.

Much of the victory was thanks to Kōga's disharmony with his Zanpakutō, making Kōga unable to access Muramasa's power. Years later, when Byakuya succeeded him as head of the Kuchiki Clan, Ginrei also revealed to Byakuya the secret truth of Kōga, passing on the duty to Byakuya to finish off Kōga should he ever escape from his seal.

Turn Back the Pendulum arc[]

Approximately 110 years ago, Ginrei, as captain of the 6th Division, was present at the promotion ceremony with the other captains as the newly-appointed 12th Division Captain Kisuke Urahara arrives to the meeting.

Later Ginrei arrived at the Kuchiki estate and watched his grandson, Byakuya train. He congratulated Byakuya on his skill at swordsmanship. Byakuya was surprised to see his grandfather, noting that he had come to stay at the estate rather than the Sixth Division barracks. He then told Byakuya that someone had come to visit and play with him and watched as Yoruichi Shihōin, captain of the 2nd Division and Commander of the Onmitsukidō entered into a competitive game of tag with Byakuya, using Shunpo. He was exasperated by Byakuya's rash and hot-headed nature, mentioning that he would be a great leader if he could learn to control himself.

Nine years later, Ginrei was present at an emergency meeting called by Captain-Commander Yamamoto. When Yamamoto decided to create an investigation team to locate the missing 9th Division squad members, he ordered Ginrei to guard Seireitei alongside 13th Division Captain Jūshirō Ukitake and 8th Division Captain Shunsui Kyōraku.

Powers & Abilities[]

Shunpo Expert: As a former captain he is capable of using Shunpo with expert skill.

Kidō Expert: As a former captain, Ginrei has capable skill in Kidō, being able to effectively use low-level Kidō without incantation.

Keen Intellect: Ginrei is a very intelligent man. He is able to quickly determine the basics behind an opponent's power and its weakness. He can also use this information to quickly create an effective counter.

Great Spiritual Energy: As a former head of a noble clan and captain, Ginrei has great spiritual energy. His energy and control over it is great enough to repel powerful hypnotic spells. His Reiatsu is green.


The name of Ginrei's Zanpakutō is unknown, but its appearance is greatly similar to Byakuya's Senbonzakura, with a rectangular guard and white hilt.

  • Shikai: Not Yet Revealed
  • Bankai: Not Yet Revealed


  • (To Kōga Kuchiki) "Those who have great power must know how to control their own power, and sometimes be controlled by that power. In order to truly create such a relationship, it is necessary to have a strong heart that keeps you away from becoming overconfident."