Andor (Wheel of Time)
:"For information about the fictional planet "Andor" or "Andoria" in the
Star Trekuniverse, see Andor".
Andor is a country set in
Robert Jordan's " The Wheel of Time" series of fantasyfiction novels.
Andor is the strongest single country in the Westlands (the southwestern section of the "Eastern" continent). It is located in the middle of the Westlands, and is one of the largest nations. After the death of the
High King Artur Hawkwing, Ishara, the first Queen of Andor, persuaded her husband Souran Maravaile (one of Hawkwing's generals) to lift his siege of Tar Valon and instead establish a country. Ishara believed in holding on to a relatively small section of Hawkwing's vast but crumbling empire, instead of fighting for the whole. The capital of Andor is Caemlyn.
Andor is one of the oldest nations in the world. It was founded during the War of the Hundred Years. Many of Andor's
traditionswere established during these early years. Unlike many nobles of the time, Queen Ishara, Andor's first ruler, realized that no one ruler would be able to take control of Hawkwing's entire empire. Instead, she focused on controlling only what she could. As a result, Andor began only with the capital city of Caemlyn and the small surrounding villages. Cautious expansion marked the reigns of the early queens of Andor. Other Andorian Queens include Queen Talisien, Queen Alesinde, and Queen Lyndelle (Pgs. 528&529 "Lord of Chaos")
The oldest tradition of Andor is that only a queen may sit on the Lion Throne of Andor, and wear the Rose Crown. However it wasn't intended that a queen would always rule- it just so happened that the first two Queens of Andor's sons were killed and so their daughters became queens. After this it became tradition that a queen would rule. The eldest daughter is known as the
Daughter-Heir, and is always sent to Tar Valonto study. The eldest brother of the Daughter-Heir is sworn to protect her with his life, and is prepared from an early age to take upon himself the title of First Prince of the Swordand control of Andor's army.
Andor is a powerful nation, with a substantial army consisting primarily of the Queen's Guards. Throughout history, Andor has been under almost constant pressure from neighboring countries. Andor and
Cairhienhave been at war more times than any two countries except for Tearand Illian. Often-lawless Murandy, south of Andor, is the source of many border incursions which the Queen's Guards must fend off; conversely, the Andoran forces at the Murandian border have resulted in Andor having a strong hand in Murandian politics. The Children of the Lighthave always had a reason to dislike Andor, as the Daughter-Heir always studies in the White Tower.
As is the case in many countries, the capital city of Caemlyn and the surrounding area is home to most of the nation's population. Other regions of the country are identified with cities or large towns, or prominent geographical features.
Caemlyn is the capital city of Andor, second in beauty only to
Tar Valon. The city of Caemlyn is actually made up of two cities, the New City and the Inner City. The New City, less than two thousand years old, was constructed exclusively by humans, surrounding but largely to the north of the Inner City. The Queen's Blessing is an inn in the New City where Rand met Loial, an Ogier. The owner of the inn, Basel Gill is a loyal Queen's man. The ancient Inner City, on the other hand, was constructed by Ogier much earlier on the hills. The entire city is encircled by a fifty-foot wall; the Inner City itself is also surrounded by a wall. Certainly the most impressive building in the Inner City is the Royal Palace, which serves as the seat of government for Andor.
In many ways Caemlyn is reminiscent of
King Arthur's Camelot.
Aridhol was one of the Ten Nations that emerged after the Breaking of the world. The small portion of Andor on the northern shore of the River Arinelle (from west of the River Arinelle's upper north-south branch to the east of the River Haevin) is often referred to by Andorans as Aridhol. Though admittedly small, the notoriety of the area seems to call for a separate identification. Whether the location of the ancient capital city, also called Aridhol and more recently known as Shadar Logoth, falls within this small region is difficult to distinguish from the maps. The fluidity of the Andorran border extending into this unclaimed wilderness region further complicates the question. Virtually no humans permanently live in this area in the New Era.
Baerlon is the primary city of western Andor, though far smaller than huge Caemlyn in the east. Primarily a mining town, it serves as a resting point for merchants buying metals from the mines in the Mountains of Mist or tabac and wool from the Two Rivers to the more populous eastern half of Andor. Baerlon is also the home of
Min Farshaw, a major character of "The Wheel of Time" series.
Braem, New Braem, and the Braem Wood
Lower Caralain Grass
River Erinin Region (Aringill Area)
Intriguingly, the nation of Andor does not include much land on the west bank of River Erinin. Cairhien holds most of both banks to the north (except the very north where Andor controls a small portion of both banks). The southern half of Andor's eastern border is some miles inland, thus in this area the Erinin actually falls outside national boundaries. Here is located the large city Aringill on the west bank, the small and unwalled town of Maerone on the east bank, and several villages nearby.
There is much speculation as to why Andor chooses not to annex Aringill. The question is all the more striking since the Andoran presence is pronounced, extending to the garrisoning of a considerable number of the Queen's Guard---apparently at the invitation of Aringill. This is where many of the Queen's Guards who were discharged by Gaebril went; Captain Charlz Guybon brought 4,762 of these back to aid daughter-heir Elayne in lifting the siege of Camelyn ("Knife").
Aringill is a fairly new city, having been either unoccupied or no larger than a small town as recently as 800 NE ("World", 118).
A town on the Caemlyn Road in between Caemlyn and Whitebridge. Many merchants stop here on their way to Caemlyn. In "The Eye of the World" Rand overhears a Myrdraal talking with a Darkfriend to keep watch for Rand outside an inn.
The area in Andor west and south of River Manetherendrelle (also called the White River) is a long stretch of land approximately 400 miles east to west, though never more than 100 miles wide (north to south), and tapering at both ends.
Though some have misrepresented this area as well inhabited, it is in fact largely taken up by the Forest of Shadows, and very sparsely populated. In the New Era, Andorans are very afraid of strange forests, and this one (which has a sinister reputation stretching back centuries) in particular.
Misty Lake Valley
Although a rather beautiful mountain lake and valley, the Misty Lake & Valley are barely acknowledged by Andor, and in fact the exact boundary is not clear and is constantly being argued. Ever since the disappearance of the ancient nation of Almoth well over four hundred years ago, only the nation of Andor has ever laid claim to any of this territory. Due to its location high in the Mountains of Mist, and it proximity to the sinister Sand Hills and Darkwood, it is largely uninhabited---with the exception of the northwestern corner of the lake valley. This small area is reached by The Katar Road from the city-state of Katar, and is nominally claimed by Katar.
Mountains of the Mist
The mountains of mist are a mountain range that has a bad reputation, upheld by Two Rivers folk, of being bad luck to even stand at the foot hills. It is primarily inhabited by wolves, bears and other predators and an abundance of deer and rabbit but there are mining camps for gold, copper, and iron.
Min Farshaw(Rands Lover and Warderbond holder) lived here with her three aunts for a time.
For lack of a better term, the area comprising the headwaters of the River Cory and northern foothills of Kintara is called the "Southlands" of Andor.
The Two Rivers
On the western border of Andor (south of Baerlon) is the region known as The Two Rivers. The area is located between the upper reaches of the River Manetherendrelle---called the White River in the Two Rivers and nowadays considered impassable at any point---and the River Taren, a smaller tributary. To the west are the Sand Hills and the Mountains of Mist, and to the east lies the Waterwood, a dangerous swamp. These obstacles make The Two Rivers an extremely isolated region of Andor; the only reasonable way into or out of the area is by crossing the Taren at Taren Ferry. The Two Rivers region contains four villages, which from north to south are: Taren Ferry, Watch Hill, Emond's Field, and Deven Ride, though the denizens of the last three barely consider Taren Ferry part of the Two Rivers at all, and think of its people as untrustworthy. The people of Taren Ferry call the other villages the "lower villages" and consider them simple. Andoran soldiers and tax collectors have not been seen in the Two Rivers for many generations, and in fact, most inhabitants of the region do not even realize that they are part of any country at all.
Rand al'Thorproclaimed himself the Dragon Reborn, however, the isolation of the Two Rivers ended. The collapse of the nations of Tarabon and Arad Doman, due mostly to his presence, brought huge numbers of refugees across the Mountains of Mist and into the Two Rivers, disturbing the local culture and quickly "modernizing" the agricultural backwater. Even worse, Padan Fainbrought Whitecloaks and Trollocs to the region, attempting to draw al'Thor out. Instead, Perrin Aybarareturned, and, in light of his defense and leadership, was unanimously (and unwillingly) selected Lord of the Two Rivers, the region's first noble in hundreds of years. Because his wife, Faile ni'Bashere t'Aybara, is second in line to the throne of Saldaea (currently held by her cousin, Queen Tenobia Kazadi), the Two Rivers may soon rise from obscurity to political importance. Due to the lack of reliable news from this relatively isolated location, many outside the Two Rivers think that there is a revolt in the Two Rivers, following the Trolloc invasion.
There are many, striking resemblances to The Shire (also an area located between two rivers) in "
The Lord of the Rings/ The Hobbit" (notably, famous tobacco from an obscure place). Some suggest that this is Jordan's nod to J.R.R. Tolkien.
Many Aes Sedai have recently visited the Two Rivers, and have commented on how the "old blood runs strong" in the Two Rivers. This is demonstrated by the three ta'veren from Emond's Field, the large number of native girls and women who are natural born channelers and/or who can be taught to channel, and men who can be taught (40). Taren Ferry is considered a disappointment in this area, as there has been too much mixing of blood with the outside world.
The Two Rivers is home to many of the major characters of the Wheel of Time series, all from Emond's Field:
Rand al'Thor, the Dragon Reborn
* Matrim "Mat" Cauthon, Captain General and Patron of the
Band of the Red Hand
* Lord Perrin "Goldeneyes" t'Bashere Aybara of the Two Rivers
Egwene al'VereSedai, Amyrlin of the Salidar Aes Sedai(rebels)
Nynaeve al'MearaSedai, an Aes Sedai of the Yellow Ajah
One well-known town towards the west of Andor is
Whitebridge, so named for the large bridge which crosses the River Arinelleinto the town. The bridge itself is said to look like glass and when newcomers cross it they often wonder how the bridge holds them.
Prominent Features and Locations
Arinelle Cliff Carvings
Artur Hawkwing's monument
All that is left of this monument are a few remains. It is at a site selected by
Artur Hawkwinghimself to be the place for his new capital after he had conquered all the Western lands (except Tar Valon). The monument itself was financed and built by the common people of his empire, despite the fact he did not want such a thing.
The Black Tower is a partially-walled fortress less than a day's walk from the city of Caemlyn. Established in the very recent past by Rand al'Thor, its purpose is to train men who can channel for the Final Battle. Originally, it was known only as "the farm", since it was little more than a farm house and land surrounding it. However, as time went on, students there felt it should have a name, and came up with it to balance the Aes Sedai White Tower.
With the removal of the taint on "saidin" by Rand al'Thor and Nynaeve al'Meara, the Black Tower may gain a more permanent existence.
Tower of Ghenjei
An old tower with no apparent doors, the Tower of Ghenjei is situated within the borders of
Andor, where Mat Cauthononce saw it. Known only to a few people is its great secret: it provides a way to go to the land of the Aelfinnand Eelfinnwithout the need to use a special " ter'angreal".
Politics & Government
Andor's ruler has traditionally been a Queen. Morgase of House Trakand was the previous Queen of Andor, and for most of her reign was widely regarded as a strong and just ruler. Unfortunately, during her last year as Queen, she was manipulated by the Forsaken
Rahvin(posing as one Lord Gaebril) into a series of harsh and unjust acts, which alienated her leading supporters among the nobility and many of the common people, while Rahvin conspired with her enemies to supplant her. Morgase eventually fled Caemlyn in secret, intending to raise support to restore her, but such was the ill-feeling against her that she and only a handful of followers were obliged to leave Andor entirely. Meanwhile, Rahvin ruled Andor unopposed until he was confronted by Rand al'Thorand killed, and Andor descended into interregnum. For a time, Rand's forces were in "de facto" control of Caemlyn, and the nobles ruled the countryside. With Morgase missing, and presumed dead by all the key players on Andor's political scene (the Dragon Reborn,the Daughter-Heir Elayne, and the leaders of Andor's noble houses), Elayne's accession to the throne should have been straightforward. But Elayne's extended absence on Aes Sedaibusiness, coupled with the ill-feeling that Rahvin had raised against House Trakand, meant that by the time she could make it to Caemlyn for her coronation, the majority of the Great Houses were against her, with some supporting her cousin, the Lady Dyelin, and various alliances of nobles putting forward their own candidates. (Dyelin herself loyally supports Elayne.) After a brief struggle, in which the principal Houses opposed to Elayne laid an unsuccessful siege to Caemlyn, Elayne was able to garner enough support to be crowned Queen.
Traditionally the accession of a new queen must be approved by a majority of the 19 Great Houses. In "
Knife of Dreams", Elayne (the Daughter-heir) finally gets the votes of a majority of the Great Houses.
Since Andor relies on a strong monarchy, it has occasionally fallen into political disorder in what are known as "Successions". These civil wars arose when it was unclear who should be the next Queen, and the various noble houses fought for their preferred candidates. Based on the tradition that support of 10 of the 19 Great Houses is sufficient, it appears that at least some Houses remain aloof during Successions (which appear to be between two candidates most of the time). A Succession with three candidates was described; it was said to involve seven years of open war before a Queen was chosen, and all three original claimants were dead by that time.
* 1. Anshar - Red Fox
* 2. Arawn - Triple Keys (silver)
* 3. Baryn - Winged Hammer (silver)
* 4. Caeren - Star & Sword (red and silver)
* 5. Candraed -
* 6. Carand - Golden Arrows (3 or many)
* 7. Coelan - Roses (of Coelan) (red)
* 8. Gilyard - Red Leopards
* 9. Haevin - Blue Bear
* 10. Mantear - Anvil (silver)
* 11. Marne - Silver Moons (4)
* 12. Northan - Black Eagles
* 13. Norwelyn - Silver Salmon
* 14. Pendar - Golden Stars (3)
* 15. Renshar - Golden Hounds
* 16. Sarand - black banner
* 17. Taravin - Owl & Oak
* 18. Traemane - White Stag (golden antlers)
* 19. Trakand - Keystone (silver)
Minor HousesBranstrom, Gilbearn, Janevor, Layden, Martan, Pensenor, Sharplyn, Traehand, etc.
Andor's strength comes from its
wealth. Much of this is generated in the Mountains of Mist, far to the westof central Andor. Gold, silver, iron, and copperare extracted from the rich mines in these mountains. Most of this metal is refined in the smelters near the mines.
The strength which must be expended to retain the valuable mines in the Mountains of Mist means that other outlying regions of Andor have been virtually forgotten. A good example of this is the
Two Rivers, where few even realize they are part of a larger kingdom.
Men wear woolen or silk trousers, shirt and coat. Coats are worn with turned-back cuffs and turned-up collars; those of the nobility are usually embroidered.
Women usually wear belted dresses with high, square necks and fitted sleeves; many have embroidery. Commoners usually wear wool (with higher necklines and aprons); nobility wear silk (with metallic threading in embroidery and belts).
igns and symbols
*SIGIL - "White Lion" (a white lion rampant)
*BANNER - a white lion rampant on a field of red
*QUEEN'S - "Lion Throne" and "Rose Crown"
*SYMBOLS - red rose & white lion
*COLORS - red (primary) and white (secondary)
*LIVERY - red, with white collars and cuffs
*UNIFORMS - red undercoat & cloak, white cuffs & long white collars
Due to the large number of similarities, Andor is thought by many to be primarily based on
England---especially of the Middle Ages. The author has confirmed that Andorans speak with a (modern) English accent. Many of the symbols of Andor mirror those of England: Tudor rose; Three Lions of England; Lion(s) of the United Kingdom; and rampart lion(s) on a red field---especially after King Richard "The Lionheart."
Minor Wheel of Time characters
Events in the Wheel of Time series
Concepts in the Wheel of Time series
Places in the Wheel of Time series
* [http://www.encyclopaedia-wot.org/ Encyclopedia of the Wheel of Time]
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