Wednesday, March 13, 2002

The Noble Houses of Andor

By Linda

Andor is one of the largest and longest established of the New Era nations:

Its sovereignty dates from Artur Hawkwing’s death, at the onset of the War of the Hundred Years, before which it was a province under Hawkwing’s governor Endara Casalain. The Royal Line can actually trace its rule of the area to a time before Hawkwing, for Endara was the daughter of Joal Ramedar, the last King of Aldeshar before Hawkwing’s conquest. Upon the death of the High King, the governor’s daughter Ishara joined with his greatest general, Souran Maravaile, to take control of the province from her mother and make it a nation. Ishara became the first Queen of Andor, and the blood of her line has been decisive in determining all subsequent successions.

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

Note, however, that Aldeshar has nothing to do with the part of eastern Andor seized by Ishara, although Ishara was native to the province, which is why she became Queen rather than Souran King, according to The Wheel of Time Companion. (Interestingly, history is currently repeating itself: a noble dark-skinned invader with a militarily brilliant commoner husband has taken over remnants of the Hawkwing empire…) Andoran monarchs base their claim to the throne on descent from a noble and a commoner. When Elenia tells Rand:

Endara resigned her warrant and knelt to Ishara as Queen." Somehow, Rand did not believe it had happened quite that way, or so smoothly.

- Lord of Chaos, Connecting Lines

his dry comment increases suspicions that Ishara and Souran seized Andor by force.

Ishara’s marriage with Maravaile was an important factor in steering Andor through the chaos of the War of the Hundred Years:

Many historians believe that it was these needs that motivated her to marry Souran Maravaile, for he was Hawkwing’s finest general and a brilliant military strategist. Others believe that love must have played at least a small role since, for all his abilities, Souran was only a commoner while she was of royal blood. They argue that she would have had to love him to marry so far beneath her station. Souran was commanding the siege of Tar Valon at the time of Hawkwing’s death and for almost a year after. Many believe that he had to love Ishara to be willing to break the siege at her request after having held it so long. Whether or not love was involved, Ishara knew she needed both Maravaile’s army and the White Tower’s goodwill. Marrying Souran gave her the first; sending her eldest daughter to study in the Tower gained her the second as well as an Aes Sedai advisor named Ballair. She was the first ruler to have an Aes Sedai advisor.

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

Actually the Tower’s singular favour to Andor in allowing the heir to be trained in the Tower, and effectively made honorary Accepted, was probably an acknowledgement of a debt to Ishara in convincing Souran to remove his besieging forces from Tar Valon to go carve a nation for themselves. Ishara had Souran secure the land around Caemlyn first, and then slowly expand their control. It took five years before their lands stretched to the River Erinin (Lord of Chaos, Connecting Lines).

Souran Maravaile was killed by four swordsmen assassins in the twenty-third year of the War of the Hundred Years, although he managed to kill them in turn (Lord of Chaos, Lion on the Hill). Ishara reigned from FY 994–1020 in a time of constant military conflict, and decisions made in her reign became law in the reigns that followed:

The most widely known tradition of Andor is that only a Queen may sit upon the Lion Throne and wear the Rose Crown, never a king. (This initially arose when none of the royal sons survived the War of the Hundred Years, but eventually became law.) The eldest daughter is named Daughter-Heir. By law she is first sent to the Tower to study, then ascends the throne upon her mother’s death or retirement.

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

The Daughter Heir is presented with the ring by the Tower whether or not she can channel in recognition of Andor’s long support of the Tower (The Fires of Heaven, Memories). (And as a reminder of the Tower’s long support of Andor).

Her eldest brother, styled First Prince of the Sword, is sworn to protect and defend his sister with his life. The First Prince is trained from childhood to command the Queen’s armies in times of war and to be her military advisor. If the Queen has no surviving brother, she appoints the First Prince.

When there is no surviving daughter, the throne is given to the nearest female blood relative. Succession is based not just on close relation to the former Queen, but on the degree of blood in matrilineal descent from Ishara. Such matters of lineage have become quite complex, since all the Great Houses are related after years of intermarriage, and the question of succession has led to bloodshed when the Houses do not agree. These conflicts are known outside of Andor as the Andoran Wars of Succession. Andorans simply refer to them as “disturbances,” refusing to acknowledge that their system for selecting an heir could possibly lead to war. There have been three wars for succession in Andor.

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

Elayne’s struggle for the throne arguably makes a fourth. The chart below lists the known Andoran Queens and show the Free Years era nations that gave birth to Andor; the first nine Queens are listed in The World of Robert Jordan’s The Wheel of Time.

As Elayne said herself, she needed the support of the High Seats of ten Houses:

There were over four hundred Houses in the realm, but only nineteen strong enough that others would follow where they led. Usually, all nineteen stood behind the Daughter-Heir, or most of them, unless she was plainly incompetent… Only ten of the nineteen were necessary to ascend the throne, by law and custom. Even claimants who still thought they should have the throne themselves usually fell in with the rest, or at least fell silent and gave up their pursuit, once another woman had ten Houses at her back.

- Crossroads of Twilight, Talk of Debts

Of these nineteen main Houses, the two most recently ‘royal’ Houses are discussed first, then Taravin, the House currently next in line, followed by the rest of the Houses in alphabetic order. Nobles of minor Houses are listed at the end of the article.

Sigil: silver anvil

House Mantear held the throne prior to the Trakands, with Mordrellen (also spelt Modrellein, Modrellen) the most recent Queen from the House. Her Aes Sedai advisor was Gitara Moroso of the Blue Ajah (Lord of Chaos, Tellings of the Wheel). Mordrellen inherited the throne from her mother, Dolera, who ascended the throne in 944 NE, after her mother died at the age of 78.

Mordrellen died in 974 NE with her two adult children, Luc and Tigraine, having vanished 3 and 2 years before, respectively.

Sigil: acorn

Luc Mantear is a tall, broad-shouldered man with dark blue eyes and dark reddish hair going white at the temples. As one aspect of the dual entity Slayer, (the other being Isam Mandragoran), he wears a wolf’s head buckle on his belt as a sign he rids Tel’aran’rhiod of wolves, haters of Shadowspawn. Gitara Moroso persuaded Luc that the outcome of the Last Battle depended on his going to the Blight, and he disappeared in 971 NE (Lord of Chaos, Tellings of the Wheel). The Dark Prophecy claims he met Isam in the Mountains of Dhoom and “one did live and one did die, but both still are” (The Great Hunt, Blood Calls Blood). Their two souls have been combined into one body and they have been granted gifts by the Dark One, including the ability to enter and leave Tel’aran’rhiod at will and to freely switch personalities and appearance as they do so (see RJ's Blog Posts Pre Knife of Dreams article), but not immunity to weapons or poison. Like others who enter Tel’aran’rhiod frequently in the flesh, they have lost a portion of their humanity and now have a barely human scent (The Shadow Rising, Hunter of Trollocs). Both aspects of Slayer appear to be dedicated Darkfriends, and Slayer is one of the Shadow’s most senior henchmen. Soon after the Aiel War, Luc killed Janduin, Rand’s father, in the Blight without the grieving and guilt-ridden Janduin offering any resistance, due to Luc’s resemblance to his beloved Tigraine. Slayer was killed by Perrin late in the Last Battle (A Memory of Light To Awaken). For Slayer’s deeds and scene of operations, see Darkfriends article.

Sigil: a woman's hand gripping a thorny rose-stem with a white blossom

Tigraine married Taringail Damodred and bore a son, Galad. In 972 NE, Gitara Moroso convinced her:

that disaster would befall her land and her people, perhaps the world, unless she went to dwell among the Maidens of the Spear, telling no one of her going. She must become a Maiden, and she could not return to her own land until the Maidens had gone to Tar Valon.

- The Shadow Rising, He Who Comes With the Dawn

Tigraine vanished from Caemlyn and went to the Aiel Waste, where she was found by Maidens of the Spear. She named herself Shaiel and told them why she was there. Eventually she became a Maiden and was adopted into the Chumai Taardad (The Shadow Rising, He Who Comes with the Dawn). She loved Galad and regretted leaving him, but she did not love Taringail, and she and Janduin, the clan chief of the Taardad, became lovers. In 976 NE she returned to the westlands as one of the spears participating in the Aiel War. She fell pregnant to Janduin but didn’t leave the spears as was customary. She died on Dragonmount after giving birth to Rand, who resembles her.


Perival, a good looking golden-haired twelve year old boy (Knife of Dreams, A Bronze Bear), is the current High Seat of House Mantear. He has been well-educated and is very perceptive, showing considerable insight—more than most of the adult High Seats—into the political and military situation in Andor. His advisor is his bed-ridden great-uncle Willim (Crossroads of Twilight, Rumours), who would be of Mordrellen’s generation. Mantear was one of the first Houses to support Elayne.


House Mantear lost the throne when Mordrellen died because Tigraine, the Daughter-Heir, had vanished and Mantear had no other girl children, only boys. This caused a War of Succession lasting almost two years. It was won by the 16-year-old Morgase Trakand in 976 NE when she obtained the support of 13 Houses (Crossroads of Twilight, Talk of Debts).

Sigil: silver keystone

Sigil: three golden keys

Morgase is a very beautiful woman with long red-gold curly hair, blue eyes and an attractive warm voice. She looks young for her age because, even though very weak in the Power (see Saidar Strength Ranking article), she has managed to channel a few times and thus has begun to slow in aging (see Ages of Characters article).

Morgase went to the Tower at age 14, not because she had aspirations to be Daughter Heir, but because she wished to be Aes Sedai (The Fires of Heaven, Memories). She was there a couple of years, longer than strictly necessary for her tiny ability (Lord of Chaos, Prologue) and left to promote her claims when the Succession started. She was greatly aided by the House Bard Thom Merrilyn, a skilled player in the Game of Houses. Two years later, she had sufficient support to gain the throne and married Tigraine’s widower, Taringail Damodred (see The Noble Houses of Cairhien article), to cement her position (The Fires of Heaven, Memories). They had two children, Gawyn and Elayne. Elayne was named after Elayne Treamane, Ellorien’s mother. Morgase was a good step-mother to Galad, and he thinks of her as his mother (Knife of Dreams, Prologue). The genealogical ties between Houses Trakand, Mantear and Damodred are shown in the family tree at right.

Elaida became Morgase’s Aes Sedai advisor because she believed that House Trakand would be the key to winning the Last Battle (see Foretellings article). She may have had a struggle with Thom Merrilyn over advising Morgase. Evidence supporting this is that Thom says there is no love lost between them.

When Elayne was an infant, Taringail became tired of being consort and plotted to become Andor’s first king. Thom Merrilin discovered the plot and arranged for Taringail’s death in a ‘hunting accident.’ Morgase and Thom become lovers for a time after Taringail’s death (The Shadow Rising, Deceptions) until, in 984 or 985 NE, Thom heard that his nephew Owyn had been summarily gentled by the Red Ajah and rushed off to help him without explaining to Morgase. She was annoyed, and when Thom returned angry at all Aes Sedai, they had a blazing domestic (The Fires of Heaven, Memories). Interestingly, Elaida was probably involved in Owyn’s gentling, since she admits to herself that she had personal knowledge of illegally gentled men (A Crown of Swords, Prologue); not as one who performed it, but more likely one who ordered it. Some time later, Morgase and Gareth Bryne became lovers.

By the late and bitter winter of 998 NE, Whitecloaks were able to stir up anti-Aes Sedai sentiment. Morgase herself turned against the Tower after Elayne disappeared, and refused to have an Aes Sedai advisor. When Rahvin arrived, he built on this further. Rahvin favoured Trakand’s enemies, Compelled Morgase to order the exile of Trakand’s allies and, in the case of Ellorien, her flogging, and alienated Morgase against aides such as Bryne. He also announced Morgase’s claim to the vacant throne of Cairhien. In a short time, Rahvin turned Andor into a chaotic state on the brink of civil war and perhaps of war with Cairhien.

Shocked by news of rebellion in the Two Rivers, Morgase shook herself free of Rahvin’s Compulsion and left Andor in secret. In Amadicia she signed a treaty with the Whitecloaks granting them huge concessions in exchange for military aid to oust Rand, believing it was preferable than Naean or Elenia being Rand’s puppet queen, even if it took (as it probably would) her lifetime and Elayne’s to undo the damage (Lord of Chaos, Red Wax).

After Niall was assassinated, Morgase was tortured by Asunawa, raped by Valda, and then threatened by Suroth when the Seanchan invaded. In despair she renounced the throne in favour of Elayne and fled Amador. She and her entourage were taken in by Perrin in Ghealdan. Tallanvor became her lover. Morgase was captured and enslaved by the Shaido, but was rescued and has now returned to Andor. Elayne will find an important duty for her mother:

"We will find an important function for you."
"Something that takes me away from the capital, so I cast no unfortunate shadows."
"But a duty that is important, so that you are not thought of as having been put out to pasture." Elayne grimaced. "Perhaps we can give you charge of the western quarter of the realm. I have little pleasure in the reports of what is happening there."
"The Two Rivers?" Morgase asked. "And Lord Perrin Aybara?"
Elayne nodded.
"He is an interesting one, Perrin is," Morgase said thoughtfully. "Yes, perhaps I could be of some use there. We have something of an understanding already."

- Towers of Midnight, A Reunion

In the Last Battle Morgase organised those retrieving discarded weapons and arrows and searching for the wounded (A Memory of Light, The Last Battle). For Morgase’s parallels see Arthurian Who’s Who and Character Names M.

Galad Damodred
Sigil: winged silver sword, point-down

This perfect looking and brilliant ‘tall, dark and handsome’ man who always does the right thing is the only son of Tigraine and Taringail. If he was left estates in Cairhien by his father, we have not heard of them. He has been well educated in politics and fighting in Andor and by the Warders of the Tower.

Disgusted at the machinations in Tar Valon, he joined the Whitecloaks shortly before the Tower coup and was quickly promoted by Valda. Valda may have regretted this, especially after Morgase escaped and Galad was no longer useful as a hostage; he was jealous of Galad’s popularity (Crossroads of Twilight, Prologue). Galad fought and killed Valda in a trial by combat over the rape of Morgase. An unforeseen result is that Galad became Lord Captain Commander of the Children (Knife of Dreams, Prologue) and swore to accept Perrin as his military commander until the Last Battle is over (Towers of Midnight, Some Tea). His forces fought as part of Perrin’s army and Galad duelled Demandred, losing his sword forearm to the Forsaken. Berelain and Galad will probably marry. For Galad’s parallels see Arthurian Who’s Who and Character Names G.

Sigil: charging white boar

Gawyn was a tall man with red-gold hair and an oval face. When Elayne was a baby, and Gawyn himself too young to understand, he swore an oath to protect Elayne with his life (The Shadow Rising, Seeds of Shadow) as her First Prince of the Sword. His father, Taringail, spent little time with him and Elayne, concentrating on the older Galad, and then was killed when Gawyn was about 5 or 6 years old. Gawyn feels an obligation to Galad, who twice saved his life when he was a young boy (The Eye of the World, The Web Tightens). It’s an indication of Gawyn’s recklessness that he needed saving twice as a child.

Gawyn trained with the Warders in the Tower and after the deposition of Siuan led the students against those who would free Siuan. He and his Younglings accompanied Elaida’s embassy to Rand and defended the embassy as they tried to bring Rand to the Tower captive. Gawyn left the Younglings in a village near Tar Valon and went to the rebel Aes Sedai. He rescued Egwene twice from the Seanchan and became her Warder and husband. The role of a consort made Gawyn dissatisfied, and he deserted his post by Egwene’s side to duel Demandred, not considering the consequences his death would have on her. For Gawyn’s parallels see Arthurian Who’s Who and Character Names G.


After Morgase’s flight and Rand’s defeat of Rahvin, Elayne could not be found. This created a window of opportunity for other Houses to claim the Lion Throne. Rand declared that he intended Elayne to be Queen but the nobles objected to an outsider deciding the succession; some were against the Trakands at all after the last year of Morgase’s rule, and some had ambitions for the throne themselves. Until the establishment of the Black Tower near Caemlyn, many nobles would have rejected a Queen openly Aes Sedai, notably those who faced down Egwene and the rebel Hall in Murandy, but now the benefits of Aes Sedai are conceded.

Sigil: gold lily

Elayne is tall and beautiful with red-gold curls, blue eyes and an oval face. She has been well educated, including in military matters (Knife of Dreams, Nine Out of Ten) and is politically savvy enough for a Blue Sitter to want to recruit her (Crossroads of Twilight, What the Oath Rod Can Do). Elayne chose the Green however, and she certainly has the requisite courage and boldness. So far, she has Bonded two Warders: Birgitte and Rand. She has little Talent for Healing—a black eye is her limit (The Fires of Heaven, Ripped Away)—but she is good at making things, be they ter’angreal or an excellent meal. As the daughter of two ruling families, she claimed both the Rose Crown of Andor and the Sun Throne of Cairhien. Conscious of the need for an heir, she is now pregnant with twins, a boy and a girl (Winter’s Heart, A Lily in Winter).

This is Elayne’s assessment of the recent state of Andoran politics:

Mending the damage Rahvin had done in Andor might take her entire lifetime even if she managed to live as long as the Kinswomen! Some Houses would stand aside from supporting her because of the outrages Gaebril had perpetrated in Morgase’s name and others because Rand had said he intended to “give” her the throne. She loved the man to her toes, but burn him for giving voice to that! Even if it was what reined in Dyelin.

- Winter’s Heart, Prologue

Elayne’s bid for the Lion Throne was first supported by Dyelin Taravin. In Crossroads of Twilight, they were joined by four other High Seats: Brantlet Gilyard, Catalyn Haevin, Perival Mantear, and Conail Northan. At this stage Aemlyn, Arathelle and Pelivar still wanted Dyelin to make a claim, but were less enthusiastic than in Lord of Chaos. Luan and Abelle were non-committal and Dyelin thought they might be inclining to Elayne in Knife of Dreams, A Bronze Bear. Ellorien was totally against Trakand and was keen for Dyelin to take the throne (not entirely disinterestedly, see below). They divided into two groups: Aemlyn Carand, Pelivar Coelan and Arathelle Renshar in one and Luan Norwelyn, Abelle Pendar and Ellorien Traemane in the other. These six were holding back because of the presence near Caemlyn of the Borderlanders’ armies. They also asked Arymilla to wait until the Borderlanders turned back. She replied that she wanted time to consider, and then redoubled her efforts to breach Caemlyn’s walls.

After Arymilla’s defeat, Sylvase Caeren, Lir Baryn and Karind Anshar switched sides and joined Elayne. They published their support for Elayne and so did Dyelin at this time (Knife of Dreams, The Importance of Dyelin).

The six uncommitted High Seats feared the Borderlanders and parleyed with Elayne to offer a truce until they were defeated. Elayne finally explained that the Borderlanders were looking for Rand and did not want to invade Andor. Abelle Pendar and Luan Norwelyn then declared for Elayne, making 11 Houses, enough for Elayne to gain the throne. Thereupon Arathelle Renshar, Pelivar Coelan and Aemlyn Carand also declared their support for Elayne in the interest of unity because they supported Dyelin and she asked them to (Knife of Dreams, The Importance of Dyelin). There are thus fourteen Houses supporting Elayne as Queen of Andor.

Ellorien Traemane will not support Elayne, and Elenia and Jarid Sarand, Naean Arawn and Arymilla Marne are unable to: Sarand and Arawn published their support of Arymilla and it would destroy their Houses to recant. The Andoran system is thus one of client-ism, not feudalism—supported by the fact that the common people are free, and not serfs. The Minor Houses follow the bigger ones not because they owe them unbreakable allegiance for their lands, but because they have committed themselves to a patron/client relationship. That is why if a major House recants its declaration of support for another House, the minor houses sworn to them would abandon them and they would lose all influence. In a feudal system the small houses would rise and fall with the big one they are sworn to. The Andoran system is thus like that of France under Louis XIV, not the English landed-based system.

Elayne has decided she wouldn’t accept Arymilla’s support if she offered it. Danine Candraed refused to support anyone in either Succession. While she would receive less favour from the Throne, by avoiding these fights her forces should be intact (see below).

Lir and Karind expect to be shown favour by Elayne because they joined Elayne before she had the throne, but she won’t because they supported Arymilla first (Knife of Dreams, Nine Out of Ten).

The custom is for the Queen to pardon her rivals after the coronation (and after they pay any ransoms due) but Elayne was careful:

Those two [who] had been in the Palace, and more who had opposed Morgase Trakand's claim to the throne, accepted her amnesty once she had it, then betrayed her. She would not make her mother's mistake. Oh, there must be amnesty wherever possible—anything else was planting the seeds for a civil war—but she planned to watch those who took her pardon very closely.

- Winter’s Heart, Sea Folk and Kin

She was also careful to consider the humbler folk:

“If I had time, I’d visit every village in Andor. It won’t make a hair of difference in what happens in Caemlyn, but it may make all the difference after I win…Most Queens in our history spent the first years of their rule gathering the people solidly behind them, Aviendha, and some never did, but harder times than these are coming. I may not have one year before I need every Andoran to stand behind me. I can’t wait until I have the throne. Harder times are coming, and I have to be ready. Andor has to be ready, and I must make it so,” she finished firmly.

- Crossroads of Twilight, A Blazing Beacon

Elayne’s noble prisoners could not pay ransoms because they had already mortgaged their lands to pay for mercenaries:

“Your misguided war against Trakand has left you destitute, and requests for ransom have been turned away by your heirs and scions. Your own Houses have abandoned you."
Her words rang in the grand throne room. The women before her bowed down further.
"This leaves the Crown with a conundrum," Elayne said. "You vex us with your troubling existences. Perhaps some queens would have left you to prison, but I find that reeks of indecision. You would drain my resources and make men whisper of ways to free you."
The hall fell silent save for the husky breathing of the prisoners.
"This Crown is not prone to indecisiveness," Elayne pronounced. "On this day, Houses Sarand, Marne and Arawn are stripped of title and estate, their lands forfeit to the Crown in retribution for their crimes."

- Towers of Midnight, Choosing Enemies

so Elayne boldly stripped them of their titles and property and offered their lands to Cairhienin nobles to bribe them to support her for the Cairhien throne. She then offered Elenia Sarand, Naean Arawn and Arymilla Marne lands in Cairhien:

"Lady Sarand," Elayne called toward the back of the room.
Elenia stepped forward, wearing her rags.
"The Crown is not without mercy," Elayne said. "Andor cannot forgive you for the pain and suffering you caused. But other countries have no such memories. Tell me, if the Crown were to provide you with an opportunity for new lands, would that opportunity be taken?"
"New lands, Your Majesty?" Elenia asked. "Of which lands do you speak?"
"A unification between Andor and Cairhien would offer many opportunities," Elayne said. "Perhaps you have heard of the Crown's alliance with Ghealdan. Perhaps you have heard of the newly revitalized lands in the west of realm. This is a time of great opportunity. If I were to find you and your husband a place to form a new seat in Cairhien, would you take what is given?"
"I . . . would certainly consider it, Your Majesty," Elenia said, showing a glimmer of hope...
"And the prisoners?" Dyelin said. "Elenia and the other two? Do you really intend to find them lands?"
"Yes," Elayne said. "What I've done for them is actually very kind. The Crown will assume their debts, then give them a fresh start in Cairhien, if this all works. It will be good to have Andoran nobility taking lands there, though I will probably have to give them land out of my own Cairhienin holdings."

- Towers of Midnight, Choosing Enemies

In another deal, Elayne contracted the Band of the Red Hand for military services including sole operating of the dragons in exchange for giving the Band one in four dragons (Towers of Midnight, Talk of Dragons).

She will grant the Two Rivers to the Dragon Reborn and Perrin will be his steward there:

If the lands are granted to the Dragon Reborn, giving him a title in Andor and making the Two Rivers his seat, then it will make sense for your home to be treated differently.
"The noble Houses of Andor will accept this, since the Two Rivers is where Rand came from, and Andor does owe him a debt. We'll have him appoint Perrin's line as his stewards. Instead of capitulating to rebels within my borders, I'll be seen allowing the Dragon Reborn, the man I love, to elevate his good friend. It might also give us some ground against the Illian-Tear pact you mentioned, who are bound to claim that their ties to Rand give them the right of conquest." She grew thoughtful, tapping the side of her cup.
"That seems reasonable," Perrin said, nodding. "Steward of the Two Rivers. I like the sound of that."
"Yes, well," Faile said. "I guess it's settled, then."
"The taxes," Elayne said, as if she hadn't heard. "You put them into a trust to be administered by Perrin and his line, with the understanding that if the Dragon ever returns, he can call upon them. Yes. That gives us a legal excuse for your exemption. Of course, Perrin will have authority to dip into those funds to improve the Two Rivers. Roads, food stores, defenses."

- Towers of Midnight, A Teaching Chamber

When Dyelin talked about wanting stability in Andor in Knife of Dreams she referred to the support from Rand, and also from the Tower, that Elayne can garner. Other Andoran High Seats may be thinking the same thing. What the nobles don’t fully appreciate is that Elayne will likely live for at least 300 years. If she were killed much sooner, then Dyelin is next in line to the throne of Andor—until the twins are born:

“If Morgase and Elayne both died—the Light send it not so!—then Morgase’s nearest female relative would take the throne. At least there is no question of who that is this time—a cousin, the Lady Dyelin—not like the Succession, after Tigraine vanished.”

- The Dragon Reborn, To Race the Shadow
Elayne was given overall command of the Light’s armies until the Compulsion of the Great Captains was exposed, and then command was transferred to Mat Cauthon, because he was protected by his foxhead ter’angreal which breaks weaves and protects the dreams of its wearer. For Elayne’s parallels see Arthurian Who’s Who and Character Names E.

Sigil: owl and oak

Dyelin became High Seat of House Taravin at the age of 15 when her father died, and successfully repelled Altaran and Murandian raiders from her lands (Crossroads of Twilight, High Seats). She is now one of the most powerful nobles in Andor (Lord of Chaos, Letters). There is strength and beauty in her face along with a few lines, and her hair has begun to grey (The Path of Daggers, Crimsonthorn). She is proud and plainspoken. There is no mention of her having had any husband or children, or even who her heir is. Birgitte points out to Dyelin that Ellorien has the next best right to the throne after Dyelin (Knife of Dreams, A Bronze Bear), therefore if Dyelin gained the throne she would be effectively a caretaker Queen, not something in Andor’s interests, especially in chaotic times. Dyelin is conscious of this; it is why she spoke to Elayne about the need for stability of government and the undesirability of needless changes in ruling Houses.

Elayne wondered at her motives in refusing to run for the throne:

Was Dyelin simply waiting for her to bungle badly before stepping in to “save” Andor? Someone sufficiently prudent, sufficiently devious, might try that route, and might even succeed…

What she [Dyelin] murmured, though, as if to herself, was “I had hoped to avoid outright civil war.” And that might mean nothing, or a great deal!

- Winter’s Heart Prologue

Yet Dyelin has consistently supported Elayne ever since Rahvin was removed:

"I refuse still," Dyelin answered in a strong voice, then turned to Rand. "I will wait and consider, my Lord Dragon. When I see Elayne alive and crowned, and you leave Andor, I will send my retainers to follow you whether anyone else in Andor does the same. But if time passes and you still reign here, or if your Aiel savages do here what I've heard they did in Cairhien and Tear"—she scowled at the Maidens and Red Shields, and the gai'shain too, as if she saw them looting and burning—"or you loose here those ... men you gather with your amnesty, then I will come against you, whether anyone else in Andor does the same."

- Lord of Chaos, Tellings of the Wheel

"Some lesser lords and ladies who thought to curry favor proclaimed for her at Aringill. She moves quickly, Lady Dyelin. Within four days she had the two leaders hanged, for treason to the Daughter-Heir Elayne, and ordered another twenty flogged…Naean proclaimed for the Lion Throne in the morning, Elenia before midday, and by sunset Dyelin, Pelivar and Luan had arrested them both. They announced Dyelin as Regent the next morning. In Elayne's name, until Elayne returns. Most of the Houses of Andor have declared support for Dyelin. I think some would like her to take the throne herself, but Aringill keeps even the most powerful careful of their tongues."

- A Crown of Swords, Pitfalls and Tripwires

She ran Andor efficiently as Regent for 5 weeks until Elayne arrived in The Path of Daggers, and since then has helped her gain the throne and plan Andor’s defence. During the phoney assassination engineered by Hanlon, Dyelin risked her life and was seriously injured. Dyelin told Elayne:

Running my own House is work enough for me without adding all of Andor to it. Besides, I disapprove of the throne changing Houses without good cause—the lack of a Daughter-Heir, or worse, one who's a fool or incompetent, cruel or greedy. You're none of those things. Continuity provides stability, and stability brings prosperity." She nodded; she liked that turn of phrase. "Mind, had you died before returning to Caemlyn and making your claim, I would have entered my own, but the simple truth is you'll make a better ruler than I would. Better for Andor. In part that's because of your connection to the Dragon Reborn." Dyelin's raised eyebrow invited Elayne to expound on that connection.'" But in large part," she went on when Elayne said nothing, "it's you yourself. I watched you grow up, and by the time you were fifteen I knew you'd be a good queen, perhaps as good as Andor has ever had."

- Knife of Dreams, The Importance of Dyelin

Above all Dyelin appears to have the good of Andor in mind.

Sigil: running red fox

Lady Karind is High Seat of House Anshar. She is a thickset woman with a severe square face and a flat stare. Her dark hair has a few grey streaks. She is tough rather than clever and has been widowed three times (The Shadow Rising, Memories). Karind opposed Morgase in the Succession and her House was weakened as a result (Crossroads of Twilight, Gathering Darkness). She has been careful to not lose influence this time—she has danced attendance on Gaebril/Rahvin, Rand and Arymilla, and at one stage debated whether to support Elena or Naean (Winter’s Heart Prologue). Finally when she was captured with Arymilla she switched sides to Elayne (Knife of Dreams, Nine Out Of Ten) and published her support. However, she will have to pay her ransom as compensation for the damage the war made (Knife of Dreams, Nine Out of Ten).

Sigil: silver triple keys

Arawn is an ancient House with much antagonism and contention among its many members (Crossroads of Twilight, Gathering Darkness). The ambitious Lady Naean is High Seat. She is a slim, pale and beautiful woman with wavy black hair and big blue eyes. During the Succession, Naean opposed Morgase and tried to gain the throne herself. She was one of the sycophants around Rahvin, and later around Rand.

Spurred by news of Colavaere’s assumption of the Sun Throne in Cairhien, Naean declared herself for the Lion Throne, but was promptly arrested by Dyelin and kept prisoner in Aringill with Elenia, who had done the same (A Crown of Swords, Pitfalls and Tripwires). While being transferred to Caemlyn, Naean and Elenia were freed by Arymilla and forced to publicly support her claim for the throne. Arymilla had Jac Lounalt torture Naean to keep her under control. Naean was so desperate that she pledged her support for Elenia if she would include Naean in her escape plan (Crossroads of Twilight, Gathering Darkness).

After Arymilla’s defeat, Naean could not switch sides like the others since she had published her support for House Marne, and recanting would break her House:

Publication meant Naean’s destruction, unless Elenia was fool enough to admit to coercion. She could try to hang on after that revelation, yet even a House with many fewer antagonisms between its members than Arawn, many fewer cousins and aunts and uncles ready to undercut one another in a heartbeat, would still break apart. The lesser Houses that had been tied to Arawn for generations would seek protection elsewhere. In a matter of years, if not sooner, Naean would be left as the High Seat of a minor and discredited remnant.

- Crossroads of Twilight, Gathering Darkness

Thus she had to follow Arymilla into temporary confinement in the Royal Palace. Naean borrowed extremely heavily to pay for her bid for the throne and for troops to prosecute her claim and her House is financially ruined and has abandoned her. She was stripped of her lands by Elayne and they have been offered to Cairhienin nobles. Elayne has offered Naean the opportunity of lands in Cairhien with the Andoran crown assuming her debts (Towers of Midnight, Choosing Enemies).

Sigil: winged hammer

Lord Lir is the High Seat of House Baryn. He is a lean strong man with an oily manner. His House was weakened after the last Succession when he opposed Morgase, and so he is prepared to support whoever looks to gain power. He hung around Rahvin when he took over, then Rand (Lord of Chaos, Lion on the Hill), and subsequently, Arymilla. His sister, Lady Aedelle, was also present in Arymilla’s camp. When Arymilla lost the battle at the Far Madding Gate Lir promptly switched sides to Elayne. He has published his support of Elayne, but will still have to pay a ransom to compensate for the war he was involved in (Knife of Dreams, Nine Out of Ten).

Lir urged Elayne to try and retake Caemlyn from the Trollocs, but she thought it a poor strategy. She suggested he visit the city with her scouts to see the situation for himself to confirm her judgment, and he agreed to do so.

In early printings Lir is named as High Seat of House Anshar in Lord of Chaos, Lion on the Hill; this is changed to High Seat of House Baryn in later printings.

Sigil: sword and star

Lord Nasin was High Seat of the powerful House Caeren. An old man, he was bony and gaunt, with a narrow face and thin white hair. Nasin forced himself on any woman he could; even other High Seats had trouble refusing him.

He opposed Morgase during the Succession and was one of the nobles hanging around Rahvin when he took over. After Rahvin was defeated Nasin became increasingly demented (Lord of Chaos, Lion on the Hill). He was partly aware that he had lost his mental faculties, but was determined to remain High Seat until his death (Knife of Dreams, A Bronze Bear). He almost pleaded with Sylvase, his granddaughter and heir, not to replace him before he died:

His smile faded, and an odd note entered his voice. It might almost have been . . . pleading. "Remember, you will be High Seat of Caeren after I'm gone. After I'm gone. You will be High Seat."

- Knife of Dreams, A Bronze Bear

or perhaps he held out the promise of High Seat as a reward for putting up with him. He left Sylvase under the ‘protection’ of Arymilla, ostensibly to keep her safe, but actually so she could not replace him as High Seat (Crossroads of Twilight, Gathering Darkness).

Nasin was the first High Seat to support Arymilla, who in his confusion he thought was his daughter. He died of a seizure during the assault on the Far Madding Gate according to Sylvase.

When Nasin died, Sylvase said her cousins promptly confirmed her as High Seat (Knife of Dreams, Nine Out of Ten). She is sturdy with blue eyes and usually an expressionless face. Such emotional withdrawal can be a sign of abuse. Considering the behaviour of her grandfather, Nasin, he is likely to have sexually abused her.

According to Norry:

“her grandfather chased away every man who showed interest in her until men stopped showing interest, and she has been virtually a prisoner since reaching her majority. That would tend to give anyone a dark view of the world. She may not . . . um ... be as trustworthy as you could wish, my Lady."

- Knife of Dreams, The Importance of Dyelin

The imprisonment itself is a form of abuse. Nasin claimed he was keeping her safe from fortune-hunters (Crossroads of Twilight, Gathering Darkness), but it was an excellent excuse which may well cover something far more sinister. The effect of his actions in driving all men away was to keep her all to himself and totally under his control. Moreover, by claiming that men only want her for her money, he was making her feel worthless.

Note that unlike everyone else, Sylvase made a point of watching the maid coerced into accepting Nasin’s sexual favours go to his tent with him (Crossroads of Twilight, Gathering Darkness).

She is less stupid than she appears: she questioned the value of attacking Caemlyn without the support of Luan and the other High Seats and asked why they did not accept Luan’s truce until they forced the Borderlanders away (Knife of Dreams, A Bronze Bear). Now that Nasin is dead, Sylvase’s eyes are alert (Knife of Dreams, Nine Out of Ten). She has dropped her protective mask of withdrawal because Nasin’s death has set her free. The abuse has stopped.

Sylvase’s first actions as High Seat were to acquire the services of Darkfriend Jac Lounalt the moment Arymilla was captured and then to declare for Elayne. Sylvase asked for custody of Arymilla, Elenia and Naen, whom she said were treacherous, hinting she would have them tortured into supporting Elayne, but Elayne wisely refused.

Sigil: unknown

Lady Danine is the High Seat of House Candraed. She is notorious for her indecision and sat out the 976 NE Succession as well as this one (Knife of Dreams, The Importance of Dyelin). Since she has not participated in any contention, her forces should be at full strength; on the other hand, due to their isolation and Lady Danine’s lack of leadership and political interest, they may be complacent, timid, and under-trained.

Sigil: three golden arrows on a field of red, the arrows pointing upward and the centre arrow slightly raised

The High Seat of House Carand is the Lady Aemlyn, a plump greying woman with much influence. Her husband is square-faced Lord Culhan (The Path of Daggers, Out on the Ice). Aemlyn supported Morgase during the Succession and was exiled when Rahvin took over. She and her husband were part of the six Andoran Houses who met with Egwene and the rebel Hall to make known their objections to the Aes Sedai armies entering Andor. They were also worried about the Borderlander armies invading Andor. Aemlyn transferred her support to Dyelin and stood for Elayne for unity’s sake when Dyelin asked (Knife of Dreams, The Importance of Dyelin).

Sigil: two entwined red roses

The High Seat of House Coelan is Lord Pelivar, a lean, weathered and balding man with hard eyes. He supported Morgase during the Succession and was exiled when Rahvin took over. Pelivar was one of the High Seats who arrested Naean and Elenia when they declared for the throne and elected Dyelin Regent in Elayne’s name. He also took part in the delegation of High Seats who objected to the rebel Aes Sedai armies crossing Andor:

Pelivar sprang to his feet. "The plain of it is, you must go another way." His voice was surprisingly high, but no less firm than Arathelle's. "If I must die to defend my lands and my people, then better here than where my lands and people die, too."

- The Path of Daggers, Out on the Ice

He has consistently supported Dyelin and only stood for Elayne in the interests of Andor when Dyelin asked him to (Knife of Dreams, The Importance of Dyelin).

Pelivar has daughters who could be contenders for the throne (The Path of Daggers, Crimsonthorn).

Sigil: red leopards (ie: likely paired or tripled)

Thirteen-year-old Lord Branlet is High Seat of House Gilyard. He has black curly hair and blue eyes. His guardian, the Lady Mayv, died over three months ago and the numerous Gilyards are still arguing over who is to be Branlet’s guardian. They won’t admit they neglected to supervise him or that he left without their agreement (Crossroads of Twilight, High Seats). Nor will they object to Branlet supporting Elayne since they dislike Houses Marne, Arawn and Sarand intensely.

Sigil: blue bear

Lady Catalyn is the High Seat of House Haevin. She has cool dark eyes and a plump face. Catalyn is not quite of age, but has already left the guardianship of her uncle, Lord Arendor—actually he gave up on the job. She has great pride, considerable arrogance, and little control over her cutting tongue. Dyelin has been disciplining her to some success (Knife of Dreams, To Keep the Bargain).
Catalyn brought considerable numbers of troops to support Elayne and also sent word to all minor Houses pledged to House Haevin to bring their support to Elayne’s claim.

Sigil: four crescent moons on a twilight-blue field

Arymilla is probably the High Seat of her House but this is not confirmed. A plump, pretty woman with big brown eyes, she is simpering and frivolous. She opposed Morgase in the previous Succession and was shown favour by Rahvin. When Rand mentions the Forsaken in Lord of Chaos, Lion on the Hill, Arymilla fainted.

Once Colaevaere crowned herself Queen in Cairhien, Arymilla perceived a power vacuum in Andor and obtained backing for the throne from Lord Nasin. She then freed the captive failed contenders Naean and Elenia from Elayne’s guards in return for their published support of her claim to the throne. Arymilla besieged Caemlyn with their combined armies, making eight camps spaced around the city to cover all gates and roads that could accommodate a reasonable group of troops (Crossroads of Twilight, Prologue) as shown on the map below.

The map also shows the camp of Bael and Bashere, who, while prepared to destroy Arymilla’s forces for Elayne, have been told this would ruin her chances for the throne:

Outland help could cost Elayne what she was trying to gain, and her enemies knew it and knew she knew it, so they had no fear of Bashere or Bael or the Legion of the Dragon, whatever their numbers. In fact, despite the siege, both sides would go to great effort to avoid pitched battle. It was a war, but of manoeuvre and skirmishes unless someone blundered, and the winner would be whoever gained an unassailable position or forced the other into one that could not be defended.

- Crossroads of Twilight, Prologue

However Arymilla soon began attacking Caemlyn’s walls and a few weeks later successfully bribed mercenaries to attack the Far Madding Gate from inside the city while Arymilla’s forces assaulted it from without (Knife of Dreams, To Keep the Bargain) (see map below).

Far from being a blunder, she might well have succeeded except that chance placed loyal mercenaries near the Far Madding Gate and some of Elayne’s forces outside the city walls. Arymilla may have underestimated the difference channellers make in moving troops quickly.

She was prepared to have Elayne and Dyelin killed and the young High Seats tortured into supporting her. One of her officers visited Lady Shiaine in Crossroads of Twilight.

Having fought against Elayne as a contestant for the Throne, Arymilla is now confined in the Royal Palace. Arymilla borrowed excessively from bankers to pay for her troops and also to bribe Elayne’s mercenaries. Her House is bankrupt and has abandoned her. Her lands were confiscated by Elayne and offered to Cairhienin nobles. Elayne has offered Arymilla the opportunity of lands in Cairhien with the Andoran crown assuming her debts (Towers of Midnight, Choosing Enemies).

Sigil: three black eagles

The High Seat of House Nothan is sixteen-year-old Lord Conail. He is tall and thin with an engaging grin, laughing brown eyes and an aquiline nose. Conail is a keen supporter of Elayne, who thinks he is too boyish, and sent word to all minor Houses pledged to House Northan asking them to support Elayne.

Sigil: silver salmon on a field of vertical blue and green stripes

Norwelyn may have held the throne immediately prior to Mantear, since Elayne reads history books written while Mantear was on the throne to learn of the errors their direct predecessors committed—in this case Norwelyn (Knife of Dreams, A Bronze Bear).

The High Seat of House Norwelyn is Lord Luan and he is one of the most powerful Andoran nobles. He is a hard-faced greying man who supported Morgase in the Succession and was exiled after Rahvin took over. Luan supported Dyelin for a while, and was one of the High Seats who elected her Regent in Elayne’s name, but once Elayne explained the Borderlanders were not invading Andor, he declared for Elayne (Knife of Dreams, The Importance of Dyelin).

Luan has granddaughters who would be contenders for the throne if they were older (The Path of Daggers, Crimsonthorn).

Sigil: three six-pointed golden stars, one above, two below, on a field of seven vertical red and white stripes

House Pendar is led by the elusive and unpredictable Lord Abelle. He has a hard, angular face and greying hair. Abelle supported Morgase in the Succession and was exiled when Rahvin took control. He opposed Rand’s occupation of Andor:

"I know something of the Karaethon Cycle," Abelle said. "I believe you are the Dragon Reborn, but nothing there speaks of you ruling, only fighting the Dark One at Tarmon Gai'don."

- Lord of Chaos, Tellings of the Wheel

He was also against the rebel Aes Sedai traversing Andor with their army. Abelle stood for Elayne once she explained what the intentions of the Borderlander armies were and that she watched the Black Tower and warned them to obey Andor’s laws but otherwise accepted their presence (Knife of Dreams, The Importance of Dyelin).

Sigil: three golden hounds on a field of red

Lady Arathelle is High Seat of House Renshar. She was beautiful but is now greying and has a lined face. During the Succession she supported Morgase and was exiled when Rahvin took control.

Arathelle was one of the leaders of the High Seats facing down the Aes Sedai rebel Hall in Murandy, objecting to the presence of their army in Andor (The Path of Daggers, Out on the Ice). Arathelle and the other five High Seats were also concerned about the Borderlander armies. She supports Dyelin for the throne and stood for Elayne when Dyelin asked (Knife of Dreams, The Importance of Dyelin).

Hanselle Renshar is Arathelle’s teenage grandson who was sent to ask Elayne for safe conduct to Caemlyn for Luan, Arathelle, Pelivar, Aemlyn, Ellorien and Abelle to speak with Elayne (Knife of Dreams, The Importance of Dyelin).

Sigil: two golden boars

The High Seat of House Sarand is Lord Jarid, a square and dark man who does whatever his wife Elenia wishes. Elenia describes him as an honourable man (Crossroads of Twilight, Gathering Darkness).

She is blond, with a foxy face and a shrewish temper (Lord of Chaos, Lion on the Hill) and likes to show off her extensive knowledge of Andoran history. Elenia claims she is more closely related to Ishara than Morgase (Lord of Chaos, Connecting Lines) and was a rival claimant in the 976 NE Succession. She was one of Morgase’s enemies who Rahvin favoured, and later hung around Rand after he defeated Rahvin.

Once Rand disappeared, Elenia declared herself for the Lion Throne and was promptly arrested by Dyelin and imprisoned in Aringill with Naean, who had also made an aborted claim. While being transferred under guard to Caemlyn, they were freed by Arymilla and forced to make public declarations of support for her bid. Arymilla kept Elenia away from Jarid and all but a few Sarand armsmen so she and Jarid could not plot her escape, and Lord Nasin was allowed to sexually harass Elenia to make her more malleable. Naean offered to declare support for Elenia in return for escaping Arymilla with her. Elenia planned to kill Arymilla and Naean both. She was captured when Arymilla was defeated and confined in the Royal Palace. Elenia borrowed a great deal of money to finance her claim and for mercenaries to fight for her and House Sarand is ruined. Elayne confiscated her lands and offered them to Cairhienin nobles in exchange for their support of her claim to the throne. Elenia and her husband have been offered the opportunity of lands in Cairhien and for their debts to be assumed by the Andoran crown (Towers of Midnight, Choosing Enemies).

Jarid was not captured and had a considerable number of troops from the besieging Houses for a while, but some left because their Houses transferred their allegiance to Elayne (Knife of Dreams, The Importance of Dyelin), and other because Jarid showed an irrational hatred of Elayne. This madness may have been due to

The pressure of it all—the lost rations, the strange things in the nights

- A Memory of Light, Prologue

as his armsman suggests, or it may be the result of Compulsion. Jarid’s forces were effectively disarmed by a bubble of evil—they were already starving—and they left him tied in the forest and marched off to fight in the Last Battle.

A provincial man from House Sarand visited Lady Shiaine, yet Elenia probably didn’t send him, since she was allowed near few armsmen and no noble loyal to her house (Crossroads of Twilight, Gathering Darkness).

Sigil: white stag with golden antlers

Ellorien, High Seat of Traemane, is a few years older than Morgase. A dark-haired pretty woman, Ellorien was plump, but has since lost weight brooding on the troubled times (Knife of Dreams, The Importance of Dyelin). She was the first High Seat to support Morgase for the throne, gaining tax concessions for her orchards, and became one of her closest friends until Rahvin Compelled Morgase to exile and flog her (The Fires of Heaven, Memories). Ellorien naturally turned against Morgase:

And there were those who would accept anyone other than another Trakand on the throne. Ellorien, for one. Morgase had had her flogged! Ellorien would never stand for any Trakand.

- Crossroads of Twilight, Gathering Darkness

and supported Dyelin until Dyelin published her support of Elayne. An additional motive in supporting Dyelin is that Ellorien has the next best claim to the throne after Dyelin, and Dyelin appears to have no heirs.

In Knife of Dreams, Ellorien still refused to support Elayne even once she had won the Lion Throne. She said she would send her troops with those of Andor to the Last Battle, but will not help Elayne. Gawyn thought Elayne might remove the tax concessions (The Gathering Storm, Old Advice). Duhara met with Ellorien to show Elayne she will cause trouble (Towers of Midnight, An Unexpected Letter). Ellorien started pressing Elayne to show mercy and free Arymilla, Elenia and Naean.

Minor Houses

Lady Carlys Ankarin
Sigil: paired white leopards

Lady Carlys is a noblewoman with curly grey hair and a seemingly open face which conceals her devious mind. She is loyal to Elenia Sarand (Crossroads of Twilight, Prologue) and was one of the sycophantic nobles who was watching Rand at sword practice in Caemlyn when Taim arrived (Lord of Chaos, Lion on the Hill).

Lord Dawlin Armaghn
Sigil: oak and axe

He is loyal to Naean Arawn (Crossroads of Twilight, Prologue).

Lord Willim Avarhin and Lady Shiaine Avharin
Sigil: golden hand with a heart on its palm

Lord Willim and his daughter Shiaine were the only members of this impoverished house and were murdered by the Darkfriend Mili Skane/Lady Shiaine who took over their name and sigil. The House is therefore extinct, but usurped. The sigil itself and the similarity of the House name from the Far Madding surname Avharin suggest this small Andoran House may have had Far Madding origins or connections, although it had long since ceased any involvement in trade.

Lady Arilinde Branstrom

Lady Arilinde is a high-spirited woman who brought 50 armsmen to Caemlyn for Elayne (Knife of Dreams, A Bronze Bear).

Lord Gareth Bryne
House Sigil: bull wearing roses around its neck

Sigil: three golden stars, each of five rays

Gareth Bryne was the last of his small and ancient House. His lands were in north-east Andor near Kore Springs. The House appeared to serve the Crown directly as soldiers rather than be allied to a greater House:

House Bryne had owned this land—or it had owned them—since Andor was wrought from the wreckage of Artur Hawkwing's empire a thousand years before, and for all that time it had sent its sons off to fight Andor's wars... None of this was his affair any longer. Except to decide which way House Bryne went, when the time came. Not that anyone would care, except to know whether or not to attack him.
Bryne had never been a powerful House, or large.

- The Fires of Heaven, The First Sparks Fall

Bryne seemed imperturbable, a stocky, moderately tall man with grey hair and a broad face. He became Captain-General of the Queen's Guard during the Aiel War after his predecessor was killed and is accounted one of the Great Captains. He served three Queens of Andor and was Captain-General and First Prince of the Sword for two (The Eye of the World, The Web Tightens).

Bryne was forced into retirement by Rahvin and passed judgement on Siuan, Leane and Min when a barn was burned down. He chased after them all the way to Salidar when they absconded and accepted the position of General with the rebel Aes Sedai. It was his love of Siuan that impelled him to be loyal to Egwene rather than the Hall. The army he raised for the rebel Aes Sedai is separate from the Tower Guard. As one of the Great Captains, he was general of the Aes Sedai’s armies in the Last Battle until Graendal’s corruption of his mind was uncovered. Siuan’s death caused him to make a suicidal charge into the enemy. For Bryne’s parallels see Arthurian Who’s Who and Character Names G.

Lady Sergase Gilbearn

Lady Sergase opposed Gaebril and has brought 20 armsmen to Caemlyn to support Elayne. She is small and slim and her dark hair is beginning to grey (Knife of Dreams, A Bronze Bear). She is a noble, but not a High Seat.

Lord Kelwyn Janevor

Lord Kelwyn is wiry and old, and brought 10 armsmen to support Elayne. He is not High Seat of his House (Knife of Dreams, A Bronze Bear).

Lord Barel Layden

Lanky Lord Barel is High Seat of House Layden (Knife of Dreams, A Bronze Bear). He opposed Rahvin/Gaebril (Lord of Chaos, Letters) and brought armsmen to Caemlyn to support Elayne in Knife of Dreams,.

Lord Jailin Maran
Sigil: cross-hatched red wall

Jailin Maran is loyal to Elenia Sarand (Crossroads of Twilight, Prologue).

Lord Brannin Martan

Lord Brannin is a supporter of Elayne (Knife of Dreams, To Keep the Bargain).

Lord Aedmun Matherin

His House is loyal to Trakand and set out for Caemlyn when Arymilla marched on the city (Crossroads of Twilight, A Blazing Beacon).

Lord Aubrem Penensor

Lean, craggy and bald except for a white fringe, Lord Aubrem still stands straight and has clear eyes. His house has been allied to House Taravin for generations (Knife of Dreams, A Bronze Bear). Lord Aubrem supported Morgase in the Succession and was first to inform Elayne that Arymilla, Elenia and Naean led the armies marching on Caemlyn (Knife of Dreams, A Bronze Bear). He brought nearly 100 men to the city.

Lady Daerilla Raened
Sigil: five silver stars

Lady Daerilla is loyal to Naean Arawn (Crossroads of Twilight, Prologue). She was one of the sycophantic nobles who watched Rand at sword practice and saw Taim arrive (Lord of Chaos, Lion on the Hill).

Lady Anthelle Sharplyn

Lady Anthelle is a stout woman who is High Seat of her House and brought support to Elayne in Caemlyn (Knife of Dreams, A Bronze Bear).

Lord Eram Talkend
Sigil: golden winged hand

He is loyal to Elenia Sarand (Crossroads of Twilight, Prologue).

Lord Laerid Traehand

Lord Laerid is a calm, quiet and thickset man who brought armsmen to Caemlyn to support Elayne (Knife of Dreams, A Bronze Bear).

Lady Brigitte Trahelion
Sigil: a silver arrow?

Elayne granted Birgitte an estate and a title as soon as they reached Caemlyn, where it could be registered (Winter’s Heart, Prologue). She probably jumped the gun here, since normally only a monarch would ennoble people and grant them lands, not a High Seat. Birgitte was a tall woman with long golden hair in an intricate braid. A fantastic archer, Elayne’s Warder was also Captain General of the Queen’s Guards. She was killed late in the Last Battle by Daved Hanlon. Her shade soon returned to protect Elayne from Darkfriends and fight with the Andoran forces when the Horn of Valere was blown.

Lord Comar

Comar was a tall, powerfully built man with blue eyes and a short black beard with a streak of white on the chin. He was turned out of the Queen's Guard for using loaded dice (The Dragon Reborn, To Race the Shadow). A Darkfriend, he was sent to Tear by Rahvin to kill Elayne, Egwene and Nynaeve and was accidentally killed by Mat.

Lord Elegar

A minor nobleman of unknown house, he is a thin-lipped and nervous Darkfriend who served Rahvin. He escorted the Tower’s young Red Ajah sister to and from the palace (The Fires of Heaven, Prologue).

Later, when Rand took over the city, he was one of the sycophants who watched Rand at sword practice and saw Taim arrive (Lord of Chaos, Lion on the Hill). We haven’t seen him since.

Lord Henren

Lord Henren is a thickset and bald man with hard eyes (Lord of Chaos, Lion on the Hill). He was one of the nobles watching Rand practise the sword in Caemlyn when Taim arrived.

Lord Macharan

Lord Macharan is a bear of a man who opposed Rahvin. He attended the parley with the Aes Sedai in Murandy and tripped over trying to avoid Egwene (The Path of Daggers, A Peculiar Calling).

Lady Negara

Lady Negara is a sharp-faced noblewoman who opposed Rahvin. She attended the meeting with the Aes Sedai in Murandy (The Path of Daggers, A Peculiar Calling).

Real Life Influences

Andor, with it red and white national colours, heraldic lions, and cult of the Queen, alludes to England. Its 'colony', the Two Rivers, largely inaccessible and with a markedly independent character (and discounting its of "interchange of bloodlines with the outside" as Verin politely put it), is very like the southeastern US states in the 17th century. These states were settled by English royalists, as is reflected in their names. Born in South Carolina, Jordan confirmed that the Two Rivers epitomises this area when he said:

"I live in the Two Rivers. Check a map."

Written by Linda, March 2009 and updated November 2013
Illustrations by Dominic, February‒March 2009


Rurouni Kenshin said...

Great work, I especially like how you overlaid Andor's outline over the nations of the Free Year Era.

Neth said...

is the Black Tower really SE of Caemlyn and so close?

I'd always pictured it a bit further a way and on the NW side of the city.

Dominic said...

It's definitely not NW. Northwest is where Bashere had his camp, and where the Legion was based. Northeast were Baiel's Aiel. The BT is in the opposite direction from Bashere and the Legion. Elayne in KOD, looking at the City's map, mentions that it is south. The distance she gives is 'less than two leagues' south of the City (the BT grounds are square-ish, and ca. 4 sq. miles in size). 2 leagues = 8 miles. This means the BT is anywhere between 5 to almost 8 miles from the south wall (Elayne never includes Low Caemlyn when she uses 'The City' - she means the outer wall), probably more like 6 to close to 8 miles as under that distance Elayne would more likely have said 'just over a league south'. The exact location south of Caemlyn is still speculative, though we'll probably get those details in AMOL and I'll update the maps accordingly.

The distance from the walls isn't great enough to force the characters to use 'south east' or 'south west' when they talk about it (especially not characters like Elayne. It would be different if Bashere or a Winfinder had given the location, for example). I placed it east of the FM road, arbitrarily. It could also be between the FM and Lugard Roads, though at that distance or so, there's a small river not mentionned in any BT chapter on that side. Another reason I opted to place it in the east is that there were scenes with Elayne coming from Cullen's Crossing, and she didn't mention seing the BT or getting close to the BT. Also, there are woods near the BT, and the impression left me by the bits of descriptions in the books is that plain south of Caemlyn is rather a cultivated area, with a great deal of villages (south of Caemlyn is the 'heart' of Andor - the north of the capital,the northwest in particular aren't very populated.). We know Rand chose a more isolated spot (but didn't foresee the expansion his modest 'farm' would take, nor that Taim would raise fortifications all around. The BT shouldn't be quite 'hidden' anymore.

In a few days I'll post my 'commentary' for the two maps as I include them in the (Forthcoming) 'Atlas' section. I'll discuss how it was made, what is accurate and what are the sources for this accurate information, and what is purely speculative or even artistic license.

Adam Whitehead said...

Excellent works on the maps. I've been trying to create some decent WoT maps for the WoT Wiki and my attempts have all be unusably bad. I'd be interested to see how you did yours.

And yeah, the Black Tower is almost ridiculously close to Caemlyn, but I'm guessing Rand wanted it close enough for him to keep an eye.

Oh yeah, isn't there at least one village between Carysford and Caemlyn? I vaguely remember Rand and Mat on the back of the cart passing through it and never learning its name before they get to Caemlyn.

Dominic said...

Thanks for the comments Adam. Your Malazan (or was it ASOIaF continents? I've seen them long ago, as I was reading those series) maps aren't half bad and they were very clear - your WOT ones may not be as bad as you think. I'll try to explain in some details how I worked in my 'atlas' post, after the AMOL hoo-ha has calmed down, probably.

And you're absolutely right about the village. I ended up not including it, IRRC, because this map is a bit too precise and it was hard to tell here it was between Carysford and Caemlyn, and wbecause there are villages, and small roads, every few miles pretty much all around the city, especially in the south, though.

I'm am not the greatest maniac about 'accuracy'. That is, I want these maps to be as accurate as I can be (with some cheats) and I make my research carefully and will listen to feedback, but personally I wouldn't mind taking more artistic license here and there, like putting a network of country roads and everything the books speak of but don't show/describe in enough detail. I stopped doing this, though, once I decided it'd be cool sharing the maps on the web. For this map it stopped at rendering Low Caemlyn my own way based on the descriptionsthat stretches for a mile or two all around the city and there are farmer markets at each main gates. That I felt was safe enough. Adding country roads and villages, I decided against, though lookwise I'd be happy to have them.

I personally know what is accurate and what isn't, but I'd cringe if I saw people on MB use my invented facts as the truth in their speculation. It's partly why for each map I'll give the sources of factual information, and spell out what I invented and what I've guessed at, and what I'm fairly certain of. It's a compromise between making the maps look just like I want, but still remain fairly valid references.

That unnamed village you speak of I have put on another map of Andor that isn't published yet, though. At some point I will post a few sketches of maps with tentative locations to get feedback/discussions before I make final versions.

Adam Whitehead said...

Something else that is interesting, is that I note the spelling 'Modrellen' has been adopted for Tigraine's mother, both here and on some of the other resource sites. Did RJ formally retcon the spelling? Both the world book and Lord of Chaos spell the name 'Modrellein' on multiple occasions.

Linda said...

I've seen it spelt both ways in the books so I don't think its an issue.

Chris Moorhead said...

I corrected that one on the WoT wiki. Mordrellen seems to be the correct spelling to me, though the Guide does quote Mordrellein. I can't find any references to Mordrellein in the series, but I can find five references to Mordrellen from four different chapters. LOC CH16, COT CH11 & CH14 and TFOH CH19. Since COT was published after the Guide and the Guide is not strictly canon, I'd go with Mordrellen.

Just one comment on the article itself I noticed in skimming through - Elayne was named after Ellorien's grandmother and not her mother.

Chris Moorhead said...

Will you ever release notes on the sigils? I was collecting info on them a while back myself and have a couple of observations.

I notice that you chose not to speculate on the backing colours where it isn't specifically mentioned. I'd probably say that it is safe enough to assume that Arawn's back is blue because Naean wears house colours almost with an obsessive pride. I have in my notes also that Haevin should be a blue bear on a back of green and Taravin is also on a back of green, though unfortunately I did not note the reference. I probably insinuated it from frequency of clothing and, I think, in Haevin's case a particular brooch that Catelyn was wearing.

Equally, there are some things that I missed. The colour on Elayne's back, for example, and the reference to entwined roses for Coelan (I just have 'roses'). Also the back for Sarand's golden boars (which I also only have one of!).

With regard to Elayne's sigil, I see it as a golden fleur-de-lis, which works nicely as a personal sigil.

I really like the golden antlered stag. I chose just to display the head, but I like the proud stance in yours. :) I also like how you placed Morgase's triple keys and the arrows of Carand. I had the arrows shooting through the air in mine. I had a lot of trouble imagining how an owl and oak worked in a sigil for Taravin. I had an owl with its wings outstretched above an oak tree. I think, in retrospect, it may work halved diagonally or in diagonal quarters.

Good to see the images anyway! Linda told me about them when I suggested adding some to the WoTmania FAQ.

Dominic said...

We've totally left out speculation in the 'Nations' articles. After discussing it with Linda, we decided to only show the sigils as reference/decorations in those articles. But I have all that in the article on Heraldry which will be published in installements, probably the next 'series' once I'm done with the Inn signs. For that one I have included the 'neutral' version (the classic 'grey lines' used in that case in real heraldry) for unknown fields or unknown colours of charges as well as the speculative, full colour version. Often I've added the banner(s) and the seals when we add them, and cons, staff, crowns, house colours etc - that sort of things.

In Elayne's case, I have two versions of the sigils, one with the realistic golden lily in bloom (we know it's a real flower, Rand brought her one) and one with the Bourbons' gold Fleur-de-Lys. Intuitively it's how I see her sigil, but OTOH I hesitate because there are instances in the books where RJ specified a charge isn't shown as natural but stylized (Alliandre's sigil is one such - some sort of stylized flower - and several Seanchan symbols, and quite a few others). So did he meant the charges not described as stylized are natural? Hard to tell, so in some cases like Elayne's I did both. I also did that for quite a few other 'historical sigils', which if shown as stylized are from the real world: Amadicia's for example is a Scottish Order's with the colours inverted, Elayne's is interesting because of her claim on Cairhien and England's on the French Throne at some point, Hoouse Trakand's sigil is shown here natural, but I also have a version that is the keystone of the Free Masons, a version of Luthair's banner 'natural' and another stylized - which gives us the arms of Napoleon etc.

I agree the formal clothes are fairly solid evidence for the missing fields and the same I've most used because it's corroborated by a few cases where we know the field of a sigil and they match the colours the character will wear in a formal setting. Elayne used to dress in blue and gold before going to the Tower, for instance (she favours green but not exclusively, now). As I point out in the article (which is essentially written - what is yet to be completed are the mini essay on colour symbolism in WOT which is part of the introduction, and a few interpretations of sigils have to be completed/tweaked) in many places RJ alternated between giving the colours of the sigils and that of the formal clothes. IMO, he did that to give us the colours associated to the characters without becoming too repetitive, especially in Andoran scenes with many High Seats present. I guess the formality of the colours involved is also the explanation why we have quite a few mentions that the colours do not suit the woman or man wearing them.

A few other 'confirmations' rather come from the uniforms of armsmen - One of Ingtar's soldier wear his Grey Owl on a yellow tabard (or cloak, can't recall) for example.

RJ had tons of fun with those banners and sigils, quite a few are little riddles, in truth maybe they all are and I could only solve a few... He also amuse himself with descriptions... each time Ingtar's party is on the trail in TGH, the banner is soaring in the wind. Each time they get stuck or lose the trail, the banner is described as drooping. That's the sort of things you only catch on doing data gathering in the books, otherwise I guess the 'mood' of the banner is recorded subconsciously and influence perception of the scene but the fact RJ did it systematically isn't apparent. Another of his 'tricks' was to add as often as possible a source of liquid/water in descriptions of locations, and to qualify is as pure, clean, soiled, tepid, calm or eager, tainted and often, as poisonned/bitter - all metaphors for the True Source, of course. It's especially obvious in EOTW - Tam for instance will test water from his well, fearing the Stranger came and tainted it - he drinks suspiciously, hesitates and say 'it's clean' with a big smile of relief. Wells/springs with water gushing from the ground is most often related to saidin, for saidar RJ rather used metaphors about spring/rivers/running water - following the same imagery the Aes Sedai use - actually he used the combined metaphor in chapter 1 for the Winespring (completing it with the mention of the Waterwheel of the miller, after which the winespring spread out in a giant pattern of little springs in the waterwood) and a few chapters later he has Moiraine use the same imagery almost word for word to Egwene to explain saidar and saidin driving the Wheel. In later books it's still there, but RJ became more subtle about it. But for instance once Rand starts gathering to him male channelers, he has a scene where Perrin had a great many new wells dug around EF, and Faile has new irrigation canals dug crossing the fields, the two working together and resulting in better reapings. In the same scene she mentions she was gifted with a weaver's wheels and that from now on the TR would no longer export plain wool but woven fabrics (or carpets, I forget).... RJ may not have been the best writer in the world, at least to some, but he excelled at using the details of his world building to evoke the big themes of his story - and heraldry was one of his 'tools".

Adam Whitehead said...

Now this is interesting. I double-checked the chapters Chris mentioned in my copies of the books the references in LoC (p. 397) and FoH (p. 318) spell the name 'Modrellein', as does the Guide. CoT is the only book where I can find this alternate spelling.

My editions of LoC and FoH are 1995 mmpbs from Orbit, my copy of the Guide is the first Orbit 1997 hardcover and my CoT is the first Orbit 2002 hardcover (the one that came out in 2002 and RJ got cross about :-) ).

Are we looking at a retcon here then?

Ooh, and either the First or Second War of Andoran succession was fought c. 500 NE, long before Mantear or I believe Norwelwyn's time. Elayne mentions a huge civil war 500 years ago in Chapter 14 of CoT.

Chris Moorhead said...

Hmmm... that is a puzzle. From all the material you were adding from the Guide at the time, I assumed that you had used it when writing the entry on Mordrelle(i)n. I use a PDF file of the books (and I can forward that to you if you are interested) which allows you to search for any word or spelling instantly. I'm not sure what version the PDF files are from, so I'll check my paperbacks when I get back home. They also Orbit editions, but not first editions. My version of the Guide is the same as yours, as is my version of CoT. Perhaps post-PoD prints have Mordrellen?

Adam Whitehead said...

Very odd. I'm assuming Tigraine's mother and the Queen in 300 NE won't have the same name as Tigraine's mother would then be 'Modrellein II' or whatever. I'm wondering if this is something RJ got confused over and tried to retcon later on. That would make 'Mordrellen' the right name for Tigrain'e mother and 'Modrellein' for the older queen ('Modrellein' is the spelling I have for the older Queen in THE DRAGON REBORN).

Not a critically important point, but annoying.

Dominic said...

I was aware that one of the wars of succession occured ca. 500 NE, but thanks for pointing it out nonetheless - we may have missed trivia like this, just not this one.

It is entirely possible that Houses Norwelyn and House Mantear have been the only two Houses to rule Andor after the direct line from Ishara ended, and before House Trakand took the throne. Not altogether likely because Elayne seemed to imply once there may have been some instances where there was a succession without a war of succession (yet given the stability of Andor I doubt tons of other houses have ruled it, though) but if the interpretation of the ambiguous mention is wrong and since there's been three wars of succession, it is possible Trakand is only the fourth House to rule Andor since Ishara. For a chnage of House to happen, the direct female descendance of all the Queens of the House have to become exctinct, or the living femalea to be so unsuitable that other Houses make a claim and gain enough support - Elayne's initial shock that the legitimate heir was contested, and her distate every time the word 'succession' was mentionned in relation to the case of Trakand, suggests this isn't normal whenever a female relative from the former Queens' line remains alive and has rarely happened before. After Tigraine's, any female offspring of Mordrellen's sisters would have had a claim, and beyond that any female offspring of Mordrellen's maternal aunts etc. As has been pointed out in the books, House Mantear had completely run out of living female offsprings after Mordrellen's death, thus the Succession.

Elayne was reading books covering the timespan of the history of the realm, and she mentionned books written under Mantear and Trakand, so perhaps she was implying those were the only two ruling Houses after Ishara.

I'll confess holding, like Linda, zero fascination at all for the spelling of Mordrellen. What's the correct spelling of the name of someone who doesn't exist anyway? That most often appearing in published books, that in RJ's notes, even if it was entered there with a mistake leading to more variants in other published works, etc.? We do not know who edited the 'Guide' and what access the editor had to RJ's source material beyond what he gave to T. Patterson (none, I'd say, but who knows?), and we do not know if, given the ridiculously short time between delivery of manuscripts Orbit works from the final version of Tor's edit or if they start earlier with the same version of the manuscript delivered by RJ and not yet 100% copy-edited, in which case it would be all the more likely that a few corrections found out and made in the Tor editions failed to make their way to Orbit's in time. We also don't know how RJ's assistants worked, for instance how much they documented editorial revisions in his notes etc. In any case, Linda and me have spotted many small discrepancies like this in spelling between the Tor and Orbit editions (Jancy becoming a Jannacy and such). Unless this leads to a misindentification of the characters involved (and so far we have not met any of those), I'll admit to finding the topic of spelling errors fairly boring. :)

Rurouni_Kenshin said...

Like I said before, absolutely awesome map. But I just noticed the scale in the right corner of the larger Caemlyn map. It looks to me like it's significantly off, the outer walls are supposed to be 6 leagues/24 miles long, and with that scale it looks over twice that.

Am I reading it wrong somehow?