Thursday, February 28, 2002

The Three Strands Common to the Forsaken


By Linda

While each Forsaken has historic parallels unique to them, there are three main strands of parallels common to all the Forsaken: mythological figures (often Greco-Roman), enemies of Ancient Rome, and Nazis. It is these three strands which will be discussed here in turn.

The most immediately obvious real-life parallels to the Forsaken are mythological figures. Like gods and goddesses, the Forsaken appear to be all-powerful and all-knowing at first. As we get to know them better, we see their historic parallels, such as the enemies and megalomaniac rulers of Ancient Rome, and the Nazi high command. At the same time, their weaknesses and errors become more evident. In the same way, during World War II, the Nazis were perceived by the Allies to be powerful and malevolently charismatic. When they were finally tried at Nuremberg, the prosecutors and observers were struck by their banal and mediocre characters. The de-mythologising of the Forsaken follows this real-life parallel and is quite deliberate on Jordan’s part.


Mythology

The Dark One himself is a god, the equal and opposite of the Creator and the embodiment of chaos. As the Creator’s evil equal, he is more like Ahriman, the god of darkness in Zoroastrianism who contends with Ahura Mazda, the god of light, than Satan, a fallen angel. (See Eschatology essay for more details on Wheel of Time theology.)

The religio-mythological aspects of his followers are derived from mainly Greco-Roman mythology, with some Norse, Celtic, Judeo-Christian, Middle-eastern and Hindu and minor Egyptian, African, Aztec, etc figures.

Jordan has combined mythic figures with common aspects to make each Forsaken, just as in our world mythologies have evolved, accreted or assimilated other myths and other gods over time. To reinforce his idea of myths changing over time, he has split Apollo, a particularly multi-faceted god, among three Forsaken. In his world, the actual characters of the Forsaken and their historic deeds become the myths of our world; these evil people and their deeds were created from real world myths to “explain”, effectively illustrate, them in a process Jordan describes as ‘reverse engineering’ (see Real Life Influences article).

These mythological underpinnings make the Forsaken inspire awe and fear. They show the great abilities the Forsaken were born with and the great knowledge they acquired as a legacy of the Age of Legends (itself a parallel with the Ancient Roman Republic, see below). They also show how great power can corrupt and indicate the great heights from which the Forsaken fell.

Here is a summary of the religio-mythologic figures with parallels to each Forsaken. For greater detail, see the relevant essay on the particular Forsaken.

Dark One – Ahriman, Chaos, Grim Reaper, Mictlantechutli, Satan/Shaitan, Woden
Ishamael – Baal Hamon, Baalzebub, Hades, Ishmael, Set, Shiva
Moridin – Azrael, Holler, Iblis, Myrddin/Merlin, Thanatos
Aginor – Agenor, Hephaestus, Shiva (minor)
Asmodean – Apollo, Asmodeus, centaurs, Jason, Muses, Nessos
Balthamel – Balthazar, Dionysus, Ramman, satyrs
Bel’al – Baal, Belial, Crom Cruach
Demandred – Ares/Mars, Bel, Beowulf, Hermes, Marduk
Graendal – Aphrodite/Venus, Circe, Eros, Grendel, Inghean Buide, Jahi, Rati
Lanfear – Alkestis, Artemis/Diana, Eve, Hecate, Hel, Furies, Inanna, Lasair, Lilith, Medea, Pandora, Prometheus, Selene
Mesaana – Athene/Minerva, Marzanna
Moghedien – Anansi, Arachne, Moirai, Morrigan
Rahvin – Maahes, Manticore, Ravana, Gabriel, Walafar
Sammael – Apollo, Sammael, Ull
Semirhage – Anath, Angel of Death, Apollo, Asclepius, Boann, Coatlicue, Fenrir, Kali, Nemean lion, Sekhmet, Shemihaza
Taim – Michael

The Forsaken had legendary—even demi-god-like—abilities, but they were tempted by the Dark One and fell to become notorious war criminals. The War of the Shadow prosecuted by the Forsaken has much in common with World War II (see The Age of Legends essay), with the Forsaken being equivalent to the Nazis. Basing the Forsaken on historical figures such as the Nazis as well as mythic figures adds realism and brings their evil closer to our own time.


Nazis

Jordan himself on his blog likened the Forsaken to the Nazis and Communists and sees all these groups as dangerously successful, in spite of the internal wrangling which led to each group making poor decisions:

Anybody out there ever read about the internal workings of the Third Reich or the reasons why the Nazis made some of their major, and often disastrous decisions? It was a zoo. A madhouse! …The internal workings of the Soviet Union under Lenin, Stalin (even more so) and most of their successors often made the Nazis look almost sensible, yet Stalin did manage to defeat the Nazis, though largely with the inadvertent help of the Nazis themselves.

The Forsaken are a group of power hungry people who don't like one another and vie with one another for power as much as they vie with the forces of the Light. Much like the internal politicking in Nazi Germany and the Soviet Union. But look at the situation in the world as it actually stands, from the White Tower divided to crop failures caused by a too-long winter and a too-long summer and people fleeing their farms because the Dragon Reborn has broken all bonds, meaning still less food, and that spoiling at a fearsome rate, from chaos in Arad Doman to a large part of the Borderland armies out of position, from the arrival of the Seanchan focusing too many eyes on them instead of the Shadow to the strongest single nation, Andor, riven by civil war in all but name and Tear split by open warfare, from....

The Nazis, who murdered hundreds of thousands of Jews, Communists, Gypsies and other ‘undesirables’:

were the pioneers of a type of ruthlessness that had not appeared much during the First World War or, in fact, during most wars among nations since Rome.

- Louis Kilzer, Hitler’s Traitor

Appropriately, the Forsaken have much in common with both the Nazis and the enemies of Ancient Rome (see below).


Ideology

The Nazis’ will to dominion was combined with philosophies of nihilism derived from Nietzsche and of racism. In the Wheel of Time books, Ishamael’s philosophy is similar to Nietzsche’s nihilism.

Fundamentally, nihilism represented a philosophy of negation of all forms of aestheticism; it advocated utilitarianism and scientific rationalism. The social sciences and classical philosophical systems were rejected entirely. Nihilism represented a crude form of positivism and materialism, a revolt against the established social order; it negated all authority exercised by the state, by the church, or by the family.

- Encyclopaedia Britannica

This is why most of the Nazis were against the Church as well as the Jews. In the Age of Legends and again in the Third Age, the Forsaken were against the Aes Sedai, who perform a similar role to, and have many parallels with, the Church.

As well as attacking the Aes Sedai, Ishamael, who was the Forsaken most completely committed to nihilism:

called for the complete destruction of the old order—indeed, the complete destruction of everything.

- The World of Robert Jordan’s The Wheel of Time

The philosopher Nietzsche used the term “nihilism” to describe the devaluation of the highest moral values and ideals:

With the collapse of metaphysical and theological foundations and sanctions for traditional morality only a pervasive sense of purposelessness and meaninglessness would remain. And the triumph of meaninglessness is the triumph of nihilism: “God is dead.”

- Encyclopaedia Britannica

Ishamael wrote a book entitled Reality and the Absence of Meaning, indicating that he followed this philosophy; he actively aided the Dark One’s attempts to defeat the Creator.

Nietzsche thought, correctly, as the Nazis showed, however, that most men could not accept the intrinsic meaninglessness of existence but would supplant God with another absolute (such as the nation-state) to invest life with meaning. The slaughter of rivals and conquest of the earth would occur in the name of these new absolutes. In the Wheel of Time world, the Forsaken have not replaced the Creator with nationalism, but want to replace him with the Dark One, a dark absolute, and slaughtered and conquered in the Dark One’s name.

The ideas of self-appointed Nazi philosopher Alfred Rosenberg are very like the basic theology of the Wheel of Time series:

The world of his ideas was dominated by a pandemonium of dark powers, which he saw as being in full assault on the 'world of light'.

- Joachim Fest, Alfred Rosenberg – The Forgotten Disciple

Rosenberg saw the Nazis as those in the light, but Jordan’s Darkfriends are defiantly and self-justifyingly evil. The Nazis regarded World War II as the final battle, as Goering’s rousing pre-war speech shows:

“The battle we are now approaching demands a colossal measure of production capacity. No limit on rearmament can be visualised. The only alternatives are victory or destruction…We live in a time when the final battle is in sight. We are already on the threshold of mobilisation and we are already at war. All that is lacking is the actual shooting.”

- Goering, 1937

It is a speech with nihilistic overtones—victory or destruction and could have been made any time from when the Forsaken were freed until the end of Knife of Dreams.

The other revolutionary group Jordan mentioned as similar to the Forsaken is the Communists.


Nazism and Communism

The extreme suspicion characteristic of the Communists and particularly the Bolshevists is a parallel of the evil which destroyed Aridhol and created Shadar Logoth. Mordeth would thus be an equivalent of Stalin, who was responsible for more deaths (pun intended) than the Nazis were. This evil has similarities to the Shadow, as the Forsaken themselves recognise, describing the evil in the Shadar Logoth dagger as “an old thing, an old friend, an old enemy” (The Eye of the World, Meetings at the Eye). While inimical to each other, the Shadow and Shadar Logoth evils use similar methods to bring about similar results even though their original purposes were completely different.

The Soviet system:

was entirely ruthless, with no sense of honour, obligation, or decency towards its servants. They were used as long as they were of any value and then cast aside with no compunction and no compensation.

- Louis Kilzer, Hitler’s Traitor

and this is where it is similar to the Shadow, which uses people, even Darkfriends, in the same way. Stalin, with his ruthless and paranoid totalitarian rule, is thus a parallel of both the Dark One and Mordeth. (How appropriate that Mordeth/Fain aspired to dark godhood (A Memory of Light, Tendrils of Mist)). As Jordan says on his blog:

The Dark One is not pleasant. He is also highly distrustful. He…dislikes…things that happen outside his control or not at his order. Call him the ur-control freak. Combine these two facts, and anyone channeling in the Pit of Doom without permission can expect swift punishment on the assumption that failure to ask permission means you intend to do something he won't like. It isn't that he believes anyone can harm him, just that he is in charge, and your failure to ask permission, your presumed intention to do something he wouldn't like, means that your faithfulness quotient has just suffered a severe downturn.

Both Stalin and the Dark One promptly executed any followers whose total loyalty they questioned.

Indeed, some top Nazis were all for making accommodation with Stalin. Bormann and Mueller (and others) were even rumoured to be aiding Stalin by feeding him valuable information.

As the Shadow and Aridhol/Shadar Logoth show, it is possible for two opposing regimes to come full circle and end up with the same attitudes and ethics, which is why Cadsuane believed that while ever Rand was suspicious and unfeeling, his victory at Tarmon Gaidon would be as bad as the Shadow’s victory (The Path of Daggers, New Alliances).


Leadership and Unity

The Nazis had very firm ideas on the relative places of leaders and subordinates:

A master is one for whom a man placed under him allows himself to be beaten to death.

- Alfred Rosenberg, speech at a meeting of Reichskommissars (August, 1942)

The Dark One and the Forsaken—the Great Masters and Great Mistresses—believed they had the right to do this to their subordinates. The high command in both regimes also expected unquestioning obedience, no matter what atrocities they ordered.

Like other Nazi leaders he [Speer] believed in the principle of Menschenf├╝hrung (personalized leadership) and preferred to rely on the personal loyalty of individuals rather than on established institutions.

- Hans Mommsen, The Dissolution of the Third Reich: Crisis Management and Collapse, 1943–1945

The Forsaken followed this principle also: each had their coterie of followers. Mesaana, for instance, commanded Alviarin’s exclusive loyalty and obedience in exchange for the knowledge of how to Travel:

“If you would serve me, child, then you must serve and obey me. Not Semirhage or Demandred. Not Graendal or anyone else. Only me. And the Great Lord, of course, but me above all save him."

- A Crown of Swords, Prologue

A divisive leadership style pervaded both regimes from the top down. From the Nazi party’s accession to power,

there quickly formed various rival factions that held divergent views, spied on each other, and held each other in contempt. A mixture of scorn and dislike became the prevailing mood within the party…Hitler held these divergent circles together politically…Hitler did not foster any social ties among the leaders. In fact, as his situation turned critical in later years, he watched any efforts at rapprochement with keen suspicion.

- Albert Speer, Inside the Third Reich

Similarly, we see the contempt of the Forsaken for each other, and Forsaken spying on each other in Tel’aran’rhiod and via agents. Competition among the Forsaken prevented any friendships and limited the extent of alliances. Perhaps just as well, since the Dark One is highly distrustful and moved rapidly against any Forsaken perceived to have questionable loyalty.

The favour of both Hitler and the Dark One was hard to gain and easy to lose. The two leaders used this uncertainty to stay ahead of their followers and force them to continually prove their loyalty.

Enjoying the Fuhrer’s favour was a sometime thing. As much time and effort were devoted to manoeuvring and scheming by Hitler’s closest courtiers as were devoted to doing their jobs. The chosen few at the top were incessantly scheming; Goering, Himmler, Goebbels, Bormann, and Ribbentrop all hated one another...This tiny group, never numbering more than half a dozen at any one time, enjoyed Hitler’s exclusive confidence, only its members had any influence on him or were able to instigate policy decisions. They alone had the authority to interpret his wishes, which—except in the military sphere during the war—were usually expressed in the vaguest and most generalised of terms, and put them into execution as they saw fit. This was the basis of their power. It was also its deepest flaw, for each depended entirely on Hitler’s favour, which could be withdrawn at any moment, and for which they were continually trying to compete. As a consequence, it was inevitable that they should all seek approval by demonstrating themselves to be, as it were, more Catholic than the Pope in both word and deed. Each strove to outdo the others in brutality—which Hitler professed to admire—the virulence of their anti-Semitism, and their total commitment to the cause. Their rivalry was therefore at the root of many of the worst excesses of Nazi policy…

A democratic leader may seek to create harmony among his immediate subordinates in order to facilitate consensus, a dictator needs dissension, to prevent their combining to overthrow him. While they were always quick to close ranks in the face of any external threat, each member of Hitler’s inner circle owed his loyalty to the Fuhrer alone. Each of them in his own way was in love with him, deeply and totally besotted, desperate to please him, and bitterly jealous of any attention he bestowed on other suitors.

- Anthony Read, The Devil’s Disciples

Upon their release form the Bore, the Chosen few again began to interpret the Dark One’s wishes and further the Dark One’s cause in their own style.

They carved out power bases of their own choosing based on various criteria, one of which I will reveal. (Others are definitely RAFO!) For the most part, Ishamael excepted, they set out to create worldly power for themselves using the methods they favoured in the Age of Legends. That is, Moghedien worked from the shadows using subversion, Sammael, Be'lal and Rahvin attempted to seize control of national governments and so on. The theory behind this was that once the Dark One broke free, those with the largest worldly power bases would be rewarded most.

- Robert Jordan, TOR Question of the Week

Each of the Forsaken was seduced by the Dark One: Demandred felt ecstasy and glory in his presence in Lord of Chaos, Prologue; and Lanfear told Rand:

”It is possible to talk with him [the Dark One]. Go to Shayol Ghul, into the Pit of Doom, and you can . . . hear him. You can . . . bathe in his presence.” A different light shone on her face, now. Ecstasy. She breathed through parted lips, and for a moment seemed to stare at something distant and wondrous. “Words cannot even begin to describe it. You must experience it to know.”

- The Shadow Rising, Decisions

They were prepared to commit any atrocities—even risk destroying the Pattern with balefire—to gain and keep his favour. Only Moridin, among the Forsaken, was a true believer in the Dark One’s plans; the other Forsaken joined up for personal gain. In the same fashion, strict believers were rare in the leadership of the Nazi regime, and were soon isolated and disregarded by those who were hungry for power and riches.

The Dark One used the competition among his followers to prevent them uniting or rebelling against him, all the while saying that only the fittest among them deserve to rule in his name. All the Forsaken aspired to be the Dark One’s regent on earth, and they (with the possible exception of Moridin) spent more effort on achieving this than on the Dark One’s plans against the Light. Hence their resentment of Moridin’s anointing. Some had secret plans to kill Moridin in such a way that he couldn’t be reincarnated, to pave the way for themselves.

It is a weakness of the dictatorial style that competition must be encouraged so that the ambitions of one follower are stymied by those of another. This cost the Shadow dearly in the earlier books and forced the Dark One to declare Moridin Naeblis. Just so with the Nazis:

Despite attempts to regenerate the Reich Defense Council and, after these failed, to install a Three Men's Committee [of Bormann, Keitel and Lammers] to enforce long overdue rationalization measures, the lack of coordination within the Reich government persisted throughout the critical year of 1943.

- Hans Mommsen , The Dissolution of the Third Reich: Crisis Management and Collapse, 1943–1945

The Naeblis Moridin (a parallel of Bormann), who had two mind-trapped assistants (the equivalents of Keitel and Lammers, see Lanfear and forthcoming Moghedien essays), forced the other Forsaken to a more unified, effective strategy. They, in turn, each searched for opportunities to kill him.

Both the Dark One and Hitler kept their post-war plans secret—or even fluid. ;)

To the minister of the Reich Chancellery, Hans-Heinrich Lammers, Hitler remarked that any discussion of a National Socialist concept for reordering postwar Europe was "unimportant for the war effort," and he prohibited any conceptual work for the future

- Hans Mommsen, The Dissolution of the Third Reich: Crisis Management and Collapse, 1943–1945

beyond expending large amounts of manpower and materials on grandiose buildings. The Dark One was similarly coy about his own plans and what ‘remaking the world in his own image’ would actually mean for his faithful followers.


Culpability

How guilty are the Forsaken? Surprisingly, some readers make excuses for them. Here is what one top Nazi wrote about his own guilt:

For if I had only wanted to, I could have found out even then [before he joined the Party] that Hitler was proclaiming expansion of the Reich to the east; that he was a rank anti-Semite; that he was committed to a system of authoritarian rule; that after attaining power he intended to eliminate democratic procedures and would thereafter only yield to force. Not to have worked that out for myself; not, given my education, to have read books, magazines, and newspapers of various viewpoints; not to have tried to see through the whole apparatus of mystification—was already criminal. At this initial stage my guilt was as grave as, at the end, my work for Hitler. For being in a position to know and nevertheless shunning knowledge creates direct responsibility for the consequences—from the very beginning.

- Albert Speer, Inside the Third Reich

Speer considered himself guilty as much from allying himself with Hitler and Nazism, as from the atrocities he committed. His comment also touches on the theme of knowledge, which is important in the series. The Forsaken knew that the Dark One planned to break the Wheel of Time (or kill the Great Serpent), and with the power released through that death, remake the world in his image, and actively worked to bring this about. Yet they did not question what ending Time meant even for their own precious lives, let alone what sort of a world they would supposedly be ruling over forever.

Like Speer, the Forsaken used their considerable abilities to work out how to carry out the Dark One’s orders, but not whether he should ever have been listened to in the first place. Their character flaws blinded them into letting the Dark One seduce them to his cause, as the Nazis let Hitler. The Nazis’ and the Forsaken’s character flaws are very similar:

Every society had its authority-ridden personalities. Bigots exist all over. And schizoids, dead to normal feeling, walk the streets every day. The latent ingredients could be found everywhere. The distinction in Nazi Germany had been that these people had not functioned on the margins of society. They had run it.

- Joseph Persico, Nuremberg, Infamy on Trial

Add sadists and one has described the Forsaken and their administration.

Below is a summary of the Nazis (and a few Communists) with parallels to each Forsaken. Aspects of some Nazis were divided among two, or even three, Forsaken to illustrate the effect time has on history and legend. For greater detail, and other historic parallels unique to each Forsaken, see the relevant essay on that Forsaken.

Dark One – Hitler, Stalin
Ishamael – Goebbels, Hitler (minor), Himmler (minor), Rosenberg
Moridin – Bormann
Aginor – Mengele, Nazi scientists
Aran’gar – Ursula Beurton
Asmodean – Hess, Heydrich (minor), Speer
Balthamel – Kaltenbrunner, Mueller, Sauckel, Streicher
Bel’al – Hans Frank, Karl Frank, Frick, Terboven
Cyndane – Keitel
Demandred – Quisling, Rosenberg, Von Manstein
Graendal – Goebbels, Goering, Koch, Mengele
Mesaana – Eichmann, Hoess, Mao, Rosenberg, Schirach, Streicher
Moghedien – Canaris, Funk, Lammers, Schacht
Rahvin – Goebbels, Ribbentrop
Sammael – Jodl, Kaltenbrunner (scar), Mao, Rommel, Seyss-Inquart
Semirhage – Grese, Heydrich, Himmler, Mengele, Nazi doctors, Ziereis

The Nazis planned to institute the Thousand Year Reich, as the Dark One planned to remake the world in his image. Both groups were prepared commit terrible atrocities to bring this about. Their ruthless style of warfare, displacing, enslaving and killing large groups of people, had not been seen on that scale since Ancient Rome. Rome paradoxically is a parallel of both the cruelty and decadence sparked by the Dark One’s touch and the civilisation and good government of the Age of Legends.


Ancient Rome

The Utopian Age of Legends is derived from the Ancient Roman Republic, which was regarded as a Golden Age up until modern times (see The Age of Legends essay), with Lews Therin Telamon being derived from the most acclaimed man of that time, Julius Caesar (see Lews Therin essay). Correspondingly, many enemies and notorious figures of Ancient Rome are parallels of the Forsaken; notorious figures such as Pompey and Crassus, who formed the First Triumvirate with Caesar, just as Lews Therin Telamon, Demandred and Sammael were the main generals for the Light. Both triumvirates fell apart…

Military service was the main avenue to obtaining status in Ancient Rome, whereas in the Age of Legends, status was earned through community service. The Hall of Servants of the Aes Sedai is equivalent to the Roman Senate and the leader of the Aes Sedai was titled ‘First Among Servants’, another parallel to Ancient Rome, where the Princeps Senatus was the senior member on the roll of the house, and the first to be consulted during a debate. He was a man of unimpeachable integrity and morals chosen by the censors, and the position was reviewed every five years. The Emperor Augustus was the princeps civitatus (‘first citizen’) and described himself as ‘first among equals’ so as not to reduce the status of the Senate.

The Collapse, the social and moral decline induced by the Dark One’s touch after the drilling of the Bore, would be equivalent to the Roman Empire, especially the late Empire, when society became increasingly violent and decadent.

While the War of the Shadow is mainly a parallel of World War II, the prowess of a Romano-British leader against the Saxon invasion in the dying days of the Roman Empire was transformed over time into the large body of legends about King Arthur; and these legends are another important source for the Wheel of Time (see Arthurian Myth essays). This is the cross-over point between the historic parallels of the Forsaken and Rand/Lews Therin discussed here, and the Arthurian myth upon which the heroes of the Light (and Mordeth and Ishamael/Moridin) are based. Ancient Rome thus serves not only as a source of historic parallels for the Wheel of Time series, but illustrates Jordan’s theme of the effect of time on history and legend. Jordan has woven the two historic strands—Ancient Rome and Nazism—closely together in an intricate pattern of repeating historic cycles.

A real-world parallel for the Time of Madness would be the end of the western Ancient Roman Empire, which was under pressure from invasion by ‘barbarian hordes’ on all sides and finally collapsed into the Dark Ages. Much knowledge and technology was lost, and urban centres declined. As the Western Empire fell, the Church rose, eventually to be influential in providing leadership and knowledge. Similarly, in the Wheel of Time world, the civilisation and technology of the Age of Legends was destroyed during the Breaking. Some time after, the White Tower was founded and it subsequently became a source of stability, and knowledge in the Third Age.

The horrors perpetrated by the Forsaken during the War of Power were such, that, even after centuries of imprisonment in the Bore, their names were still used to frighten children into obedience:

"My mother always said the Forsaken would come for me if I didn't mend my ways. If I ever saw anybody who looked like Ishamael, or Aginor, it was him. "
"Everybody's mother scared them with the Forsaken," Rand said dryly…

- The Eye of the World, An Empty Road

His mother had frightened him with those names when he was little. Ishamael comes for boys who do not tell their mothers the truth. Lanfear waits in the night for boys who do not go to bed when they are supposed to.

- The Dragon Reborn, The Hunt Begins

The most feared of Rome’s enemies were likewise used as a threat:

But for centuries after, mothers would terrify restless infants into silence at night with the words “Hannibal is at the gates!”

- Philip Matyszak, The Enemies of Rome

Below is a summary of the enemies and notorious figures of Ancient Rome that are parallels of the Forsaken. For details on these parallels, and other historic parallels unique to each Forsaken, see the relevant essay.

Ishamael – Caligula (minor), Pyrrhus, Vercingetorix
Aginor – Archimedes
Asmodean – Nero
Balthamel – Antony
Bel’al – Alaric, Sulla
Demandred – Attila, Brutus, Hannibal, Pompey, Spartacus
Graendal – Messalina, Poppaea
Lanfear – Cleopatra VII, Tullia
Mesaana – Vandals
Moghedien – Shapur I
Rahvin – Jugurtha
Sammael – Crassus, Philip V of Macedon
Semirhage – Mithridates VI
Taim – Sejanus


In Conclusion

While each Forsaken has their own unique historic parallels, there are three major strands of parallels common to the Forsaken: myth, Ancient Rome and Nazis. These strands link these evil characters to provide their myth, legend and history and show the powers, skills and knowledge they had, the flaws which led them to fall from grace into total corruption and the atrocities they committed.


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Written by Linda, November 2005 and updated January 2014

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