- This page details Sylvia Tilly in the primary universe; for the Sylvia Tilly in the mirror universe see Sylvia Tilly (mirror).
- "Did you ever think, when you signed up for Starfleet, that you'd be forced to see war and death?"
"Death found me when I was a child, so, yeah, I knew what I was getting into."
"I don't think I did, not really. Does that make me naïve?"
"It makes you optimistic."
- —Sylvia Tilly and Michael Burnham, 2257[src]
Sylvia Tilly was a 23rd century Human woman. In the 2250s decade, Cadet Tilly attended Starfleet Academy and was assigned to the engineering team operating the spore drive aboard the USS Discovery. (DSC episode: "Context Is for Kings")
The Tilly family had French roots. Under pressure from her success-oriented mother, young Sylvia Tilly stole away from school on a civilian freighter. Discovered by the ship's engineer, Tilly was allowed to remain aboard and work her passage to a non-Federation planet. When she was recovered by Starfleet, her parents permitted Tilly to live with her father Iain Tilly aboard the science vessel USS Dorothy Garrod. (DSC novel: The Way to the Stars)
In the 2250s, while attending the Academy, she was fascinated by Doctor Paul Stamets' and Justin Straal's work with the Prototaxites stellaviatori fungus spores and its scientific application. Despite his general dislike for Starfleet and the military, Stamets began to correspond with Cadet Tilly. (DSC comic: "Discovery Annual 2018")
Sometime after the onset of the Federation-Klingon War of 2256-2257, she heard of Cadet James T. Kirk taking the Kobayashi Maru scenario test a third time. (STO - Age of Discovery mission: "Reporting In")
Alongside Lieutenant Paul Stamets, Cadet Tilly served under Gabriel Lorca aboard the Crossfield-class science vessel USS Discovery. There, she made friends with "the mutineer" Michael Burnham. (DSC episode: "Context Is for Kings")
In 2258, Ensign Tilly was among the crewmembers who elected to remain aboard Discovery when it needed to be stranded in the far future to keep it out of Control's reach. (DSC episode: "Such Sweet Sorrow")
Following the defeat of Osyraa, minister of the Emerald Chain, the Discovery crew adopted the Starfleet 3189 uniform. Tilly's uniform switched her from the engineering to the sciences division. While Saru returned to Kaminar, Michael Burnham became the ship's new captain. (DSC episode: "That Hope Is You, Part 2")
|United Earth, Earth Starfleet||Discovery (NX-class)||Brent • Carpenter • Curtis • T. Mayweather • Shea • R. Tallarico|
|Federation Starfleet||USS Discovery (Crossfield-class)||Airiam • R.A. Bryce • M. Burnham • Chiefowitz • Collins • P. Georgiou • H. Culber • Decker • K. Detmer • Gotthelf • Harrington • Kowski • E. Landry • Linus • Logan • G. Lorca • Magnus • Molina • D. Nhan • E. Nilsson • J. Owosekun • C. Pike • T. Pollard • Rause • J. Reno • G. Rhys • M. Richter • Saru • P. Stamets • A. Tal • S. Tilly • A. Tyler • Webb • Wells • Wilson • Zora|
|USS Discovery (Nebula-class)||M. Dayrit • Grazna • A. Portikos|