Wheel of Time (Geography)

From Tar Valon Library
Jump to: navigation, search

''Unless stated otherwise, all information herein is taken from The World of Robert Jordan's "The Wheel of Time", Chapter 15.

If you wanted information on every place in the series, visit the Location Glossary

General

The World of the Wheel of Time consists of three large continents, separated by two oceans, the Aryth and the Morenal with many smaller islands and seas. Within these landmasses, are numerous mountain ranges, rivers, hills and other geographical features.

The Main Continent

Main article: Main continent

The area in which the majority of the books takes place, is in the easternmost region of a large unnamed continent, split into three areas, each of which is isolated from the others by mountains or other difficult to pass features.

The Westlands

Main article: Westlands

The majority of the events occur in the area west of the Spine of the World, referred to as the Westlands, approximately three thousand miles from east to west and two thousand from north to south. It is bordered along the north by the Mountains of Dhoom,separating it from the Blight. There are fourteen nations, three large city states and a few other minor settlements, and around half the area is unclaimed, and either sparsely populated or unpopulated.

Although many of the different nations' claims border on each other, most of these borders exist only on maps. The Two Rivers, for example, is technically in Andor, although Andor hasn't been able to govern the Two Rivers in generations. Especially as the series progresses, more and more farmland goes unclaimed, and the nations' influence shrinks rapidly.

The Aiel Waste

Main article: Aiel Waste

East of the Spine of the World, is a large desolate area, occupied by the Aiel since the Breaking and known as the Aiel Waste. North to south it is a similar size to the Westlands, though is only about half as big east to west. The Mountains of Dhoom continue along the northern border, while to the east, the Cliffs of Dawn and the Great Rift form the border.

The Aiel, inhabitants of the Waste, don't refer to it as such. They call it the Three-Fold Land; a shaping stone to make them, a testing ground to prove their worth, and a punishment for their sin.

Shara

Main article: Shara

To the east of the Aiel Waste, separated from it by the Great Rift and Cliffs of Dawn is the third distinct section of the landmass, given many names by its inhabitants. It is a little larger than the area called the Westlands, about two thousand miles across and four thousand miles North to South. It is one nation and its inhabitants claim that this has been the case since the Breaking.

The Aryth Ocean

Main article: Aryth Ocean

The Aryth Ocean is the large ocean separating the main continent from the Seanchan lands in the east and is around ten thousand miles across.

The Sea Folk Isles

Main article: Sea Folk Isles

In the Aryth Ocean there are a number of small Islands.

Seanchan

Main article: Seanchan (Continent)

The Seanchan continent is bordered by the Aryth Ocean to the east and the Morenal Ocean to the west and is around fifteen hundred leagues at its widest and four thousand leagues from north to south. It is as large as the westlands, the Waste and Shara combined. To the north, is a mountain range known as the Mountains of Dhoom, after the mountains of the same name in the main continent. The Seanchan Blight lays north of this, showing the same corruption of the main one, but less virulent and lacking Myrddraal and Trollocs, though some Shadowspawn such as Draghkar remain. For this reason, it was named the Lesser Blight by Luthair Paendrag's armies. The continent crosses the equator and has seven significant islands.

The Morenal Ocean

The Morenal Ocean is between the land of Shara in the main continent and the Seanchan Continent. Little is known of it, including whether or not it has island ranges. None of the known Sharan ports are on the Morenal Ocean.

The Land of Madmen

The Land of Madmen is a continent in the Aryth Ocean, to the south of the Main continent. It is uncharted, with many active volcanoes and according to the Sea Folk, civilisation never recovered after the Breaking. Both male and female channellers live there and are dangerous and unpredictable.

The Blight

Main article: Blight

The Great Blight, commonly referred to as the Blight, is a region in the north that is entirely corrupted by the Dark One and inhabited by Shadowspawn. It stretches on either side of the Mountains of Dhoom from World's End in the west to Shara in the east. The Blight also exists in Seanchan, where it is called the Lesser Great Blight, because not as many dangerous creatures of the dark thrive there (TWoRJTWoT). Entering the Blight is dangerous and moving at night even more so (TEotW, Ch. 48), even for experienced campaigners, as the smallest things like insect bites mean death there (NS, Ch. 15).