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The Fall of the Empire


Pilai
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I think the Seanchan empire is about to fall to pieces.  I base this on some very important details that I haven’t seen discussed online yet, although I will admit I haven’t followed every thread on every fansite by any means.  It is quite possible that there will be a “well everyone knows that” response to this.  However I have seen a lot of posts that I would consider outright impossible because of this fact.  A lot of discussion that deals with “the north and east/south and west” being split between Rand and the Seanchan.  Lots of things of that nature…Rand bowing to the Crystal Throne or not, Rand being taken back to Seandar in their control, etc etc.  Basically any post that doesn’t indicate that their entire empire is about to be completely torn apart because of their own beliefs.

 

The Seanchan base everything in their society on the Empire, and in turn, the Emperor/Empress.  Their entire ruling class is based on the idea that certain people are descendants of Luthair, and in turn Artur Hawkwing.  Although you can be promoted to the Blood, I’m pretty sure that anyone in direct contention for the throne is going to be an actual decendant of Luthair.  However even Luthair himself wasn't the Emperor right away, just the leader while they were fighting the Armies of the Night.

 

The key to this theory comes about from direct thoughts of a Seanchan from book 2, the Great Hunt and one from Shadow Rising.  Two quotes doom their society from the very foundation.  Any empire that comes about after Seanchan falls apart will have to have an entirely different basis for a power structure and reasons for looking to certain people as leaders.

 

“One such, a woman named Deain, who thought she could do better serving the Emperor  he was not Emperor then, of course  since he had no Aes Sedai in his armies, came to him with a device she had made, the first a dam, fastened to the neck of one of her sisters.”

 

The key point in this first quote is this: “he was not Emperor then, of course – since he had no Aes Sedai in his armies”.  Even though he was the son of Artur Hawkwing, it was the taming and leashing of Aes Sedai that made him into the Emperor.  Without Damane, there is no Emperor/Empress, and therefore no Empire.  This alone is enough for me to say the Seanchan are doomed.

 

Tuon (now Fortuona) is a Sul’dam.  This is known by enough people that there is no way for her to cover this fact up.  When the Seanchan find out for a fact that Sul’dam are just channelers that can learn rather than are born with the ability, things are going to hit the fan.

 

“She no longer trusted any sul'dam, and yet she had no choice but to trust them.  No one else could control the damane, and without the damane. . . . The very concept was unthinkable. The power of Seanchan, the very power of the Crystal Throne, was built on controlled damane.”

 

This quote seals the deal.  This is from Suroth (in book 4, Shadow Rising), one of the High Blood.  The ruling class knows what keeps them in power.  Even though this person was a darkfriend, they wouldn’t lie to themselves about something this important.  I’m quite sure that these two quotes are going to destroy the power structure of the Seanchan empire.  Even if Fortuona stays in control, it will not be of a supremely powerful empire that has armies of leashed channelers as a backbone of their might.  Whatever happens, Seanchan will be destroyed as a society.  After that happens it will be easy for Rand to “bind the nine moons to serve him”.  It will probably be just about the only thing that keeps Fortuona in power.

 

 

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In KoD, isn't it, the entire Seanchan royal family (except Tuon) is murdered, and civil war and uprisings break out all over the place? That empire is toast. I'd say if Fortuona went home in the mornin', so to speak, she'd find very little left of her palace, or indeed her Empire.

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Basically that too.  At this point she still thinks of keeping the empire together, and thinks (or talks?) about the difficulty of deciding whether to go back and retake the empire first, or finish consolidating power on this side first then going back in strength.  For her, and all of the Seanchan on this side's perspective, the empire is still there even if there will be someone to overthrow back in Seandar.  Even though there are two empires at this point (assuming someone took control of the Crystal Throne back on Seandar), they still think of themselves as Seanchan and still think of their power structure in the same way.

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Are the Seanchan not the Seed of the Hammer? And Tarabon, or some such, has the Tree on its flag?

 

This is one of those wonderfully ambiguous things.. Artur Hawkwing was known as 'the Hammer of the Light':

 

http://encyclopaedia-wot.org/characters/hist/hawkwing.html

 

But his son Luthair also became known as the Hammer:

 

http://library.tarvalon.net/index.php?title=Luthair_Paendrag

(look under 'Miscellaneous')

 

Tarabon does indeed have an association with trees:

 

http://encyclopaedia-wot.org/geography/tarabon/index.html

 

But the fight Rand had with Asmo did indeed burn the ancient tree, Avendesora, in Rhuidean (TSR Ch 58)

 

http://encyclopaedia-wot.org/items/avendesora.html

 

And now Rand carries the sword Justice. Makes me wonder. I've mused on this elsewhere.

 

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Given that Mat was supposed to go with Tuon reconquering Seanchan after TG, it's safe to say that it will not go to pieces.

 

Well thats maybe why they will go. Bring stability to the continent. If the Seanchan culture changes drastically - and it will change drastically for Mat to have anything to do with it - then I imagine a ta`veren would be useful in picking up the pieces.

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ok seanchean is totally screwed, they are in a civil war with multiple sides slaughtering each other, and since assassination is popular over there I am going to guess most of the nobles are going to die. And by the time Tuon got back over there (by conventional means) seanchan will be in a million little nations and she would have to completely reconquer it, which I dont see happening, I could see seanchan turning into somethign like the European Union with tuon slowly exerting more and more control until she has complete domination

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Rand isn't descendant from Hawkwing (none of his children remained in Randland proper).

 

So I gather. So - what about Berelain sur Paendrag of House Paeron? How does she claim that name?

 

maybe her ancestors where cousins to Artur, I imagine Artur as Napolean, setting up family to rule different areas. And when the empire fell apart Berelains ancestor was wise enough to not chase after the whole thing and retreated to an area that they could hold (mayene)

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Hmm. I just found this, from:

 

http://library.tarvalon.net/index.php?title=Artur_Hawkwing

 

"In FY 994, at the age of eighty-two, the High King Artur Hawkwing dies. The war

over his succession started almost immediately after his death. None of his

blood survived. This war would be known as the War of the Hundred years and

would shatter Hawkwing's empire. "

 

However:

 

"Mayene: The Firsts of Mayene claim to be direct descendants of Artur Hawkwing

through his grandson Tyrn. It is unclear who Tyrn's parents were, and even if

this claim is valid. Several sources claim that none of Hawkwing's blood

survived him, except for Luthair. Of course, for a descendant of Hawkwing during

the War of the Hundred Years, it was almost guaranteed to shorten your lifespan

dramatically to admit your heritage. Whatever the truth of the claim, Berelain

sur Paendrag Paeron, the current First of Mayene, still uses his name. "

 

 

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