Artemis Fowl
Artemis Fowl

"Be well."
―Julius Root (final words)[1]

Commander Julius Root was the commander of the Reconnaissance division of the Lower Elements Police.[2] He was frequently angry, and when angry, his face turned red (thus earning him the nickname "Beetroot"). He was the brother of the fairy criminal Turnball Root, who also was an officer in the LEPrecon.


He was often annoyed by many LEP personnel, especially Foaly[2][3] the centaur (whom he could not fire, as Foaly's knowledge of technology is irreplaceable). At first, he seemed to dislike Captain Holly Short,[2] although it's later revealed in The Time Paradox that he was just trying to induce in her a sense of discipline and respect for her commanding officers.[4] In the first Artemis Fowl novel he was betrayed by his old friend,[2] Briar Cudgeon, who desired Root's position.[2] At first he despised Artemis Fowl and his accomplice Butler,[2] but by the second book they had a certain respect for each other.[3]

Physical appearance and personality

Root was a broad-chested elf with gray, buzzcut hair.[2] He wore a required LEPrecon uniform with Commander Status gold acorns. Root smoked customary fungus cigars and had little sense of humor, though made (unintentional) dry-humored jokes (he hasn't laughed out loud in 200 years).[3] Root, despite being a veteran of war and a commanding officer, was quite active in the series up until his death, and had shown skills for strategising and marksmanship.[2] His favorite weapon was a tri-barreled water-cooled blaster, the most powerful production handgun under the world.[citation needed]

Role in series

Artemis Fowl

Commander Julius Root was commander of the LEPrecon. He was harder on Holly Short because she was female, and thus all of Haven would be watching her, making her a 'test case'.[2] When she was kidnapped by Artemis Fowl, he personally went after her. In the end, Holly escaped and a Bio-Bomb was released in Fowl Manor, but Artemis found a way to circumvent it by taking some sleeping pills to force him to change his state of consciousness, allowing him to slip back into real time and escape the blast.[2]

Artemis Fowl and the Eternity Code

Commander Julius Root plays a minor roll in The Eternity Code. He watches Foaly doing the mind wipe through communications. He appears on a screen when the group is getting together Fowl Manor.

Artemis Fowl and the Opal Deception

Commander Root's Recycling ceremony

Opal Koboi led Holly Short and Commander Julius Root into a trap.[1] A bomb covered with stealth ore was strapped to Julius's Chest using octo-bonds, tightening and crushing him. Koboi informed Holly that there was a sweet spot on the bomb. If Holly shot it, the bomb's circuitry would be overloaded and it would not detonate. Otherwise, he would be blown up. Holly shot it, but Koboi had lied, and there was no "sweet spot". It was merely a trick to cause the LEP to believe Holly shot Root.[1] Holly knew it was probably a lie, she fired anyway for the tiny chance that it wasn't.

The ensuing explosion incinerated Root and forced Holly to flee. Since they did not have any sound feed on their cameras due to Koboi's jammer, the LEP accused her of Root's murder. Root was eventually replaced with Ark Sool, and Holly resigned, believing it would do more good if not under command of him. Followed by which former Captain Trouble Kelp was appointed commander.[1]

Artemis Fowl and the Time Paradox

Following Root's death, Holly managed to get a chance to say goodbye to him in the past, thanks to Artemis, who was trying to make it up to her for accusing her of giving his mother Spelltropy. Root found it odd, but was touched by it.[4]

The Silky Sifaka lemur, Jayjay (Julius Junior), was also named in his memory, because his head fur resembled that of Root's buzz-cut.

Portrayal in the Artemis Fowl film

Julius Root in the Artemis Fowl film

While Root is male in the book series, in the Artemis Fowl live action film the character is instead female and is portrayed by Judi Dench. This version of the character has much the same role as Root had in the first Artemis Fowl film, and some of the one seen in The Arctic Incident, though this side of the character does not show up much, since the film focuses mostly on the siege of Fowl Manor plot from the first book. Regarding the change, director Kenneth Branagh stated that the filmmakers asked author Eoin Colfer if they could have that kind of license and he replied "Let's do it."[5]


"No, Foaly! None of your bright ideas, thank you very much! Captain Short's life is in danger, so push that button before I have to climb that tower and push it with your face!"
Artemis Fowl
"Shut your mouth, convict."
Throughout Artemis Fowl series[2][3][6][1]
"Don't give me any of your lip today, Foaly, because today is not one of those Oh-I'm-so-impressed-with-the-pony's-technology days."
Artemis Fowl[2]
"If it makes any difference, I'm proud of you, Holly."
The Opal Deception[1]
"It's not about what's best for us. It's about what's best for the People."
The Opal Deception[1]
"Not a nice set of options. Don't you have anything good to tell me?"
The Opal Deception[1]
"Root: Just push that button before I get over there and push it with your face.

Foaly: Some things never change. "

The Opal Deception
"Go and save Artemis. That's the last order I'll ever give you, Captain. Don't you dare ignore it."
The Opal Deception
"Don't call me Julius! You always do that just before you disobey me."
The Opal Deception


  1. 1.0 1.1 1.2 1.3 1.4 1.5 1.6 1.7 Artemis Fowl and the Opal Deception by Eoin Colfer
  2. 2.00 2.01 2.02 2.03 2.04 2.05 2.06 2.07 2.08 2.09 2.10 2.11 Cite error: Invalid <ref> tag; no text was provided for refs named book1
  3. 3.0 3.1 3.2 3.3 Cite error: Invalid <ref> tag; no text was provided for refs named book2
  4. 4.0 4.1 Artemis Fowl and the Eternity Code by Eoin Colfer
  5. Truffaut-Wong, Olivia (November 27, 2018). The ‘Artemis Fowl’ Movie Changes Some Characters, But Director Kenneth Branagh Says It’s Still The Story You Love. Bustle.
  6. Cite error: Invalid <ref> tag; no text was provided for refs named book3