Jump to content

DRAGONMOUNT

A WHEEL OF TIME COMMUNITY

Matrim Cauthon Poss Ability?


Recommended Posts

I have been casually re-reading the wheel of time novels in anticipation of A Memory of Light, while also reviewing some of the old interviews with RJ. He mentioned that he had extensive notes on each of the main characters and would re-read these bios each time he began writing one of these characters into the books. This gave me an interesting idea, and about half way through my re-read I decided I would read each characters storyline instead of the whole book (giving me a different perspective on things). After reading COT and KOD I noticed something about Matrim Cauthon that I have never really picked up on. What is his association with lightning?

 

Noal quotes a translation of a part of the Dragons Prophecies in COT.

 

"Fortune rides like the sun on high

with the fox that makes the ravens fly.

Luck his soul, the lightning his eye,

He snatches the moons from out of the sky."

 

After reading this translation it appears to me every time Mat makes a life changing decision lightning strikes in the background. An example of this is in KOD when Mat agrees to accompany Thom to the Tower of Ghenji. ““Burn me for a fool,” he muttered. “I’ll go.” Thunder crashed deafeningly right atop a flash of lightning so bright it shone through the tent canvas.” There are several other examples throughout this book.

 

Any thoughts as if there is any significance to this, or if there is any relationship to lightning?

Link to post
Share on other sites

I do remember Mat getting hit by lightening and knocked out of his shoes, earlier on in the series, maybe by Rand? But the more I think about it there has been other lightening.

Link to post
Share on other sites

I do remember Mat getting hit by lightening and knocked out of his shoes, earlier on in the series, maybe by Rand? But the more I think about it there has been other lightening.

 

It's not clear on whether the lightning was caused by the OP or Mat and Rand being Tar'varen. The storm was already happening, and they needed a way to escape. So it could easily have been caused by the pattern being rearranged to meet their needs

Edited by Dagon Thyne
Link to post
Share on other sites

I think Guadrean meant the time at the inn back in tEotW, when they were locked in and had to get out of the room.

One of the first times when rand really might have channeled. Some still say that it was they being ta'veren and got what they needed

Link to post
Share on other sites

I think Guadrean meant the time at the inn back in tEotW, when they were locked in and had to get out of the room.

One of the first times when rand really might have channeled. Some still say that it was they being ta'veren and got what they needed

 

That is Rand channeling. In the chapter after we see him get a reaction from it.

Link to post
Share on other sites

It seems a little redundant for Mat to have both lightning and the dice to signal an important event. The example you provide, where Mat agrees to go to the tower of Ghenjei, also has the dice stopping right as he agrees.

 

I can't recall many other times Mat being associated with lightning. There was the before mentioned death by Rahvin and there was also some during his fight with Couladin, but he was most definitely not the source of either.

Link to post
Share on other sites

I do remember Mat getting hit by lightening and knocked out of his shoes, earlier on in the series, maybe by Rand? But the more I think about it there has been other lightening.

 

It's not clear on whether the lightning was caused by the OP or Mat and Rand being Tar'varen. The storm was already happening, and they needed a way to escape. So it could easily have been caused by the pattern being rearranged to meet their needs

 

The city of Caemlyn was warded in boxes, exactly like Dashivaginor later explained about Sammael and Illian. Rand agreed with Dashy because he had experienced it. Remember, the whole trip to Caemlyn for Rand was a trap by the Forsaken. Rand just had the moxie, with the help of Nynaeve, to smash through it and turn the day. I view that as the final function of Mat's Taveren-ness; he went on that raid and got killed in Rand's place. Remember, Mat is "to die and live again, and remember a portion of what was". This was how he did that, and if he hadn't drawn Rahvin's fire Rand could/would have been killed instead. End of prophecy. So the prophecy built in a failsafe. Mat, whose luck was such that not only could he save the dragon reborn, he'd be such a good friend that his death (along with that of Rand's Aiel love) would throw the DR into such a berserker state that he fought with the one weapon that could reverse Mat's death. Now how's that for taveren luck?

As for the lightning being Mat's symbol, I always thought that was just a reference to gunpowder. Remember, with a few enlightened exceptions, these people are in the Dark Ages or the very early Renassiance. The only explosions they would know about would be lightning excepting those who would be among the scholarly elite (Aes Sedai, some nobles a few others) probably less than one percent of total population. I've seen gunpowder confused with lightning in other stories. Why not this one?

Link to post
Share on other sites

"to die and live again, and remember a portion of what was" Happened in Rhuidean. He never died in Caemlyn because Rahvin died before he hit h im with lightning

Link to post
Share on other sites

"to die and live again, and remember a portion of what was" Happened in Rhuidean. He never died in Caemlyn because Rahvin died before he hit h im with lightning

He didn't die in Rhuidean.
Link to post
Share on other sites

Huh, now that you mention it, he really has been around lightning a lot. 'Lightning his eye'. That line never made sense to me. He did get temporarily blinded by lightning in EoTW.

 

Well I suppose lightning has a big association with luck. 'Lightning never strikes twice' etc. It must be a metaphor for his manipulation of random chance. Which could potentially apply to lightning if he needed it to, I suppose. It is one of the most 'random' acts of nature.

Link to post
Share on other sites

Gonna disagree, Luckers, on symbolic grounds.

 

What is the sound of tumbling dice but muted thunder? Mat just considers them dice.

 

Fits the storm god associations. Why is another question.

Link to post
Share on other sites

I think Guadrean meant the time at the inn back in tEotW, when they were locked in and had to get out of the room.

One of the first times when rand really might have channeled. Some still say that it was they being ta'veren and got what they needed

 

YES YES!

Link to post
Share on other sites

I always thought it was obvious that the lightning eye thing was a reference to Mat giving half the light of the world to save the world... lightning is a form of light... and when he sacrificed half the light of the world, his eye got ripped out... do you get what I mean like.... that’s why in this prophecy it says “the lightning his eye” it was symbolising mat giving up half the light of the world (his ‘lightning’ eye) to save the world....

Link to post
Share on other sites

I think Guadrean meant the time at the inn back in tEotW, when they were locked in and had to get out of the room.

One of the first times when rand really might have channeled. Some still say that it was they being ta'veren and got what they needed

 

YES YES!

 

No, this genuinely was Rand channeling. We see the reaction.

Link to post
Share on other sites

"to die and live again, and remember a portion of what was" Happened in Rhuidean. He never died in Caemlyn because Rahvin died before he hit h im with lightning

Yes, but Rand still remembers....and if he'd not used balefire everyone would remember.

I agree with Luckers. That was Rand channeling, though it was also being taveren and getting what he needed. Torn Shadow, where was that confirmed? Sorry, I can only look things up when i go to the library. Seriously folks, am I the only one who thinks lightning is a reference to gunpowder? And BrainFireBob, Odin was not the Norse Storm God. That was Thor. He (Odin) was the war god, the death god and the chief god. Sort of a Zeus/Hades/Ares. He was also (at least in Harry Harrison's work) called the Betrayer of Warriors. Mythology students have postulated that he supplanted Tiwaz (Tues, the god for whom Tuesday was named) sometime between the invasion of Britain by Cerdic and his Saxons and the Viking Invasion a few centuries later. Somehow the Sky God was showed to the side and the chief god supplanted, though Thor probably had nearly as many adherents as Wotan (Odin, or Wedn in the Old English name. Wednesday was named after him).

Edited by Asgard Thorin
Link to post
Share on other sites

"to die and live again, and remember a portion of what was" Happened in Rhuidean. He never died in Caemlyn because Rahvin died before he hit h im with lightning

Yes, but Rand still remembers....and if he'd not used balefire everyone would remember.

I agree with Luckers. That was Rand channeling, though it was also being taveren and getting what he needed. Torn Shadow, where was that confirmed? Sorry, I can only look things up when i go to the library. Seriously folks, am I the only one who thinks lightning is a reference to gunpowder? And BrainFireBob, Odin was not the Norse Storm God. That was Thor. He (Odin) was the war god, the death god and the chief god. Sort of a Zeus/Hades/Ares. He was also (at least in Harry Harrison's work) called the Betrayer of Warriors. Mythology students have postulated that he supplanted Tiwaz (Tues, the god for whom Tuesday was named) sometime between the invasion of Britain by Cerdic and his Saxons and the Viking Invasion a few centuries later. Somehow the Sky God was showed to the side and the chief god supplanted, though Thor probably had nearly as many adherents as Wotan (Odin, or Wedn in the Old English name. Wednesday was named after him).

 

Mat is primarily Odin, but with overtones of Loki, Coyote, and other trickster gods above and beyond Odin. I'll pass on being offended you lectured me on Norse mythology, suffice to say that there's no news in anything you posted. Storm gods and sky gods have a high area of overlap, depending on the cultural context. At various points, Mat and Perrin both take on sun god imagery, whereas Rand is a classic sun god case, but Rand also has overtones of Tew, not Freyr, which would be the expectation. Don't be literal-minded expecting 1:1 transitions in this series. The storm over Ebou Dar was caused by Mat freeing the Windfinders- Mat himself may be the storm in this instance. He was also essential to the Bowl of Winds. Hence my remark about storm god associations.

 

Lightning could be a reference to gunpowder, although I doubt it's so simple. Mat has lightning quick- impossibly quick- reflexes, and Mat's dice make more sense contextually if, instead of being a random sound, they are the thunder of pending "storms" of fate that he can sense. To return to the Odin archetype, Odin gave his eye for wisdom and also a measure of foresight. Mat would then have a nearly useless form of precognition, fitting for Odin.

 

FYI, as I assume you'd be interested, "Perrin" is the name of a Balkan thunder god with very nearly the attributes of Thor. Magic hammer, fertility and storm connotations, warding against undead, and so forth.

Link to post
Share on other sites

Heh, I could always use a lecture on Norse mythology. I spent my college years as an Archaeology major, and the one thing I got out of the Germanic religions is that somebody really needed to get their act together and write an encyclopedia or something. The Eddas just aren't enough.

 

I like the idea of lightning being a gunpowder reference - lightning has to mean something, I doubt Jordan just threw it in there to balance the meter of the poem, and if there is ever going to be an effect that outlives Mat it's going to be the thunderous retort of those cannons. Dragons. Whatever.

 

As for the Odin connection, well, I'm not sure if Odin had too much to do with lighting, but at the end of the day he was a sky god. If you throw every myth and legend about Odin, as well as Woden and all his other previous forms together, it wouldn't surprise me in the least if he had tossed around a couple of thunderbolts in his day. Perrin has got to be Perun, the Slavic god, as you said. But with such obvious connections for both Mat and Perrin, it's been frustrating me that there isn't a viable cognate for Rand, beyond a list of attributes for some sort of sun god. However, that mention of Tiwaz got me thinking - he may have once been the chief Germanic god back in the day, but by the time Odin's in charge he's called Tyr, and notable for being one handed. Also a God of Justice and War (although war seems to be a secondary domain of all the Nordic gods. Hey, they're Vikings, what can you do?) Sounds like a decent candidate for Rand to me. Now I'm curious. More research is required. I swear to God, if this ends up with me trying to read medieval Icelandic again, I am never coming back to these forums.

Link to post
Share on other sites

Heh, I could always use a lecture on Norse mythology. I spent my college years as an Archaeology major, and the one thing I got out of the Germanic religions is that somebody really needed to get their act together and write an encyclopedia or something. The Eddas just aren't enough.

 

I like the idea of lightning being a gunpowder reference - lightning has to mean something, I doubt Jordan just threw it in there to balance the meter of the poem, and if there is ever going to be an effect that outlives Mat it's going to be the thunderous retort of those cannons. Dragons. Whatever.

 

As for the Odin connection, well, I'm not sure if Odin had too much to do with lighting, but at the end of the day he was a sky god. If you throw every myth and legend about Odin, as well as Woden and all his other previous forms together, it wouldn't surprise me in the least if he had tossed around a couple of thunderbolts in his day. Perrin has got to be Perun, the Slavic god, as you said. But with such obvious connections for both Mat and Perrin, it's been frustrating me that there isn't a viable cognate for Rand, beyond a list of attributes for some sort of sun god. However, that mention of Tiwaz got me thinking - he may have once been the chief Germanic god back in the day, but by the time Odin's in charge he's called Tyr, and notable for being one handed. Also a God of Justice and War (although war seems to be a secondary domain of all the Nordic gods. Hey, they're Vikings, what can you do?) Sounds like a decent candidate for Rand to me. Now I'm curious. More research is required. I swear to God, if this ends up with me trying to read medieval Icelandic again, I am never coming back to these forums.

 

To paraphrase RJ: Rand is partially based on Tew. His sun god symbolism- I've got a long post somewhere recent about it- is also fairly endemic, with the male forsaken representing false or usurping sun gods in one aspect, battling them regains him the panoply of the sun (sunbeam, music, knowledge/inspiration, sacred marriage to the moon, the serpent, corona- Sammael himself is the image of a fallen Apollo); he's also Moses (Aiel=Hebrews, Waste=Egypt), Adam (Rhuidean is where the Tree of Knowledge of good and evil is- although the Tree merely dominates the plaza), and the obvious Christ parallels (stigmata FTW- palms, side, prickly crown). He's also partially King Arthur, having drawn the Sword in the Stone, the links to three women (which is originally drawn from sun god mythos), unified the lands, forced justice, etc. Trained to rule by the Merlin, the once (LTT) and future (Ra'T) king. He's also the dragon from Chinese mythology, which has both black and white scales, since yin embodies an element of yang and vice versa (which is why the Flame and Fang lack the dots, it's representative of the world being out of balance). The Dragon, for those curious, has 113 black scales representing its power of destruction and masculine strength (the Companions), whereas it also has the ability from its feminine capacity to breath foam that restores fertility to the land (sha'rah links, Bowl of Winds). There's also the Korean mythology of the twinned dragons, expressed fairly directly in modern animes and mangas such as X.

 

EDIT:

 

Tew or Tyr was the god of justice and battle. In this aspect, he was also the patron of lawyers. He was honorable and implacable. When the other gods sought to bind the Fenris Wolf with the chain I can never remember how to spell (Hvaugnir?), the Wolf asked for one of the gods to put their hand in its mouth, to prove it wasn't a trick. Tyr volunteered, and lost his sword hand. He then became more dangerous with his other hand.

 

Implacable? Obsessed with justice and the law? Lost a hand binding a monster out of nightmare? Simply moved on? That's Rand. Heck, he literally uses Justice as a weapon now.

Edited by BrainFireBob
Link to post
Share on other sites

"to die and live again, and remember a portion of what was" Happened in Rhuidean. He never died in Caemlyn because Rahvin died before he hit h im with lightning

Yes, but Rand still remembers....and if he'd not used balefire everyone would remember.

I agree with Luckers. That was Rand channeling, though it was also being taveren and getting what he needed. Torn Shadow, where was that confirmed? Sorry, I can only look things up when i go to the library. Seriously folks, am I the only one who thinks lightning is a reference to gunpowder? And BrainFireBob, Odin was not the Norse Storm God. That was Thor. He (Odin) was the war god, the death god and the chief god. Sort of a Zeus/Hades/Ares. He was also (at least in Harry Harrison's work) called the Betrayer of Warriors. Mythology students have postulated that he supplanted Tiwaz (Tues, the god for whom Tuesday was named) sometime between the invasion of Britain by Cerdic and his Saxons and the Viking Invasion a few centuries later. Somehow the Sky God was showed to the side and the chief god supplanted, though Thor probably had nearly as many adherents as Wotan (Odin, or Wedn in the Old English name. Wednesday was named after him).

 

I dont think lightning is a reference to gunpowder because it hasn't really been a factor. However, the lightning may be a reference to the damane because lightning bolts are part of the damane symbol? Maybe Matrim will be the reason the damane are freed, or he will have the responsability of marshalling them for the last battle.

Link to post
Share on other sites

Join the conversation

You can post now and register later. If you have an account, sign in now to post with your account.
Note: Your post will require moderator approval before it will be visible.

Guest
Reply to this topic...

×   Pasted as rich text.   Paste as plain text instead

  Only 75 emoji are allowed.

×   Your link has been automatically embedded.   Display as a link instead

×   Your previous content has been restored.   Clear editor

×   You cannot paste images directly. Upload or insert images from URL.

×
×
  • Create New...