Jump to content

DRAGONMOUNT

A WHEEL OF TIME COMMUNITY

Census : Randland 996NE


Noah Ruan
 Share

Recommended Posts

I don't know what to believe frankly, but I think I would put the most weight on the actual quotes by RJ (if those are authentic). I can't imagine 100-300 million in total if the biggest cities are between 300,000 to 500,000/700,000. We don't hear or see much about activity (political or economical) outside of the capitals either, and we _are_ told (and shown) a decline in Randland. Nations between the borders of current nations have disappeared, _and_ the borders of current nations are shrinking. I can't see where all these people would hide. How many Aes Sedai are there, around 1000? Count the Kin as well. But even with horribly inefficient recruiting, 3% of the population is supposed to be able to channel. Of 150+ million... Well I just can't make such a high population number work. 

 

Aes Sedai don't recruit at all, they rely on volunteers. On top of that, Aes Sedai don't venture much into most of Randland. RJ has also been quoted as saying that in the book's time period only about 1% of the population are channelers due to channelers not having children and male sparkers being culled. Also, the dissolution of nations doesn't mean people stop living there. The populations of the largest cities fit well into projections of well over 100,000,000 at least, given how large the continent is.

Link to comment
Share on other sites

  • Replies 134
  • Created
  • Last Reply

Top Posters In This Topic

10 mln. population for Andor doesn't seem all that strange IMO. It's stated in the books they can raise 200 000 strong army. You need a big population to support that number with the Randland level of technology, even if the army is only temporary.

Edited by David Selig
Link to comment
Share on other sites

10 mln. population for Andor doesn't seem all that strange IMO. It's stated in the books they can raise 200 000 strong army. You need a big population to support that number with the Randland level of technology, even if the army is only temporary.

 

 

Its not so much that 10mil for Andor is strange in of itself - its more that the 10mil juxtapose with the surrounding nations of Tar Valon with 700k and the "other larger nations" hovering around 500k at best , seems such a huge disparity in numbers that one would have to ask how could Andor have such excessively high numbers whilst neighboring countries do not even top 1/10th of that?

 

Is Andor that much more technologically advanced?

Link to comment
Share on other sites

10 mln. population for Andor doesn't seem all that strange IMO. It's stated in the books they can raise 200 000 strong army. You need a big population to support that number with the Randland level of technology, even if the army is only temporary.

 

 

Its not so much that 10mil for Andor is strange in of itself - its more that the 10mil juxtapose with the surrounding nations of Tar Valon with 700k and the "other larger nations" hovering around 500k at best , seems such a huge disparity in numbers that one would have to ask how could Andor have such excessively high numbers whilst neighboring countries do not even top 1/10th of that?

 

Is Andor that much more technologically advanced?

tar valon is a city-state at best, so 700k is quite a few individuals given its small sphere of influence, even the aes sedai don't consider it a nation. if all the westlands were a single nation with the countries as states, tar valon would be like wachington dc. a big old city independent of the states themselves.

Link to comment
Share on other sites

10 mln. population for Andor doesn't seem all that strange IMO. It's stated in the books they can raise 200 000 strong army. You need a big population to support that number with the Randland level of technology, even if the army is only temporary.

 

 

Its not so much that 10mil for Andor is strange in of itself - its more that the 10mil juxtapose with the surrounding nations of Tar Valon with 700k and the "other larger nations" hovering around 500k at best , seems such a huge disparity in numbers that one would have to ask how could Andor have such excessively high numbers whilst neighboring countries do not even top 1/10th of that?

 

Is Andor that much more technologically advanced?

The quote from Jordan is about "other large cities", not nations. Most likely the vast majority of people in the other nations live ouside the capital, just like in Andor - otherwise they won't be able to feed themselves. Except Tar Valon, of course, which is a city state.

Link to comment
Share on other sites

The quote from Jordan is about "other large cities", not nations. Most likely the vast majority of people in the other nations live ouside the capital, just like in Andor - otherwise they won't be able to feed themselves. Except Tar Valon, of course, which is a city state.

thanks for adding that about more people living outside the cities than in the cities, i had that in my post at first, but i went ahead and just focused on tar valon. based on the tech available to the common person in the westlands the vast majority of people will live out in villages and on farms, otherwise everyone would starve. to feed a city of 500k it would take the support of a million or more (likely many more) farmers and villagers

Link to comment
Share on other sites

10 mln. population for Andor doesn't seem all that strange IMO. It's stated in the books they can raise 200 000 strong army. You need a big population to support that number with the Randland level of technology, even if the army is only temporary.

 

 

Its not so much that 10mil for Andor is strange in of itself - its more that the 10mil juxtapose with the surrounding nations of Tar Valon with 700k and the "other larger nations" hovering around 500k at best , seems such a huge disparity in numbers that one would have to ask how could Andor have such excessively high numbers whilst neighboring countries do not even top 1/10th of that?

 

Is Andor that much more technologically advanced?

 

Sorry Noah not that I'm completely disagreeing with you - the numbers do seem a little vast - but to me it seems that Andor is one of the most stable nations - the odd succession war, sure, but they don't do the mad infighting of the Cairhienin and also wouldn't have lost quite as many to the Aiel in that war - they would've sent soldiers, yeah, but weren't invaded. Also they have the buffer of the Borderlands to prevent any significant losses in fighting that end. I don't know about ten million, but I could see it being the most populous nation by a good margin. Remember Rand and Mat on their walk from Caemlyn to Whitebridge - I know that's near as dammit suburban, in these terms - but it was one village after another and constant farms.

 

As for the rest of the continent, vast swathes of it seem to be very nearly unpopulated. I just don't buy the hundreds of millions idea. Ireland had 8 million at the onset of the famine, but the only unpopulated bits were the un-farmable bits. Everywhere else was stuffed, and families were large enough.

From what we've seen so far, even in a backwater like Emond's Field, large families are not the norm - I think there were 4-5 children in Perrin's? - , and in Min's viewing about Elayne getting pregnant she mentions a herb Elayne could've taken as a contraceptive - from the way she said it, it was neither obscure nor difficult to procure. (Yay me, it's 2.32 am and I'm rhyming)

Then the Borderlanders are forever losing young men to Trollocs and the like, the Illianers and Tairens like nothing better than lopping each others heads off, the Domani and the Taraboners are as bad. The Mayeners seem to have all they can manage not being pushed into the sea by Tear.

I certainly wouldn't like to put a number on population - let's not forget the Tinkers, although it seems to be just Raen's band riding around in circles - but i ust don't see hundreds of millions.

 

Sorry if this is just a big pile of babble. *yawn*

Edited by aunt_pol
Link to comment
Share on other sites

10 mln. population for Andor doesn't seem all that strange IMO. It's stated in the books they can raise 200 000 strong army. You need a big population to support that number with the Randland level of technology, even if the army is only temporary.

 

 

Its not so much that 10mil for Andor is strange in of itself - its more that the 10mil juxtapose with the surrounding nations of Tar Valon with 700k and the "other larger nations" hovering around 500k at best , seems such a huge disparity in numbers that one would have to ask how could Andor have such excessively high numbers whilst neighboring countries do not even top 1/10th of that?

 

Is Andor that much more technologically advanced?

 

Sorry Noah not that I'm completely disagreeing with you - the numbers do seem a little vast - but to me it seems that Andor is one of the most stable nations - the odd succession war, sure, but they don't do the mad infighting of the Cairhienin and also wouldn't have lost quite as many to the Aiel in that war - they would've sent soldiers, yeah, but weren't invaded. Also they have the buffer of the Borderlands to prevent any significant losses in fighting that end. I don't know about ten million, but I could see it being the most populous nation by a good margin. Remember Rand and Mat on their walk from Caemlyn to Whitebridge - I know that's near as dammit suburban, in these terms - but it was one village after another and constant farms.

 

As for the rest of the continent, vast swathes of it seem to be very nearly unpopulated. I just don't buy the hundreds of millions idea. Ireland had 8 million at the onset of the famine, but the only unpopulated bits were the un-farmable bits. Everywhere else was stuffed, and families were large enough.

From what we've seen so far, even in a backwater like Emond's Field, large families are not the norm - I think there were 4-5 children in Perrin's? - , and in Min's viewing about Elayne getting pregnant she mentions a herb Elayne could've taken as a contraceptive - from the way she said it, it was neither obscure nor difficult to procure. (Yay me, it's 2.32 am and I'm rhyming)

Then the Borderlanders are forever losing young men to Trollocs and the like, the Illianers and Tairens like nothing better than lopping each others heads off, the Domani and the Taraboners are as bad. The Mayeners seem to have all they can manage not being pushed into the sea by Tear.

I certainly wouldn't like to put a number on population - let's not forget the Tinkers, although it seems to be just Raen's band riding around in circles - but i ust don't see hundreds of millions.

 

Sorry if this is just a big pile of babble. *yawn*

 

There seem to be towns everywhere, that's my only concern. Small villages to little cities, at the very least. Oh you might have a large forest here and there, and you may not have organized nations and government in some areas, but it always struck me that there were plenty of settlements throughout Randland. You don't have towns sitting shoulder to shoulder, of course, but then you didn't find that in western Europe in 1500 either, and that had a population of roughly 50 million.

Link to comment
Share on other sites

Big pile of babble :wink:

 

 

Having read the last few posts to my previous comment - I see where you guys are coming from and I think several great points were made supporting the numbers (or at least the disparity in numbers). Still doesn't seem right to me. I have no problem believing Andor has a much larger population then just about any other nation(s). But I have a hard time believing that much more.

 

Of course..... I'm only up to chapter 4 in book 4 so I am a bloody ignorant lad and will defer to the more educated and more traveled brothers and sisters here. :unsure:

Edited by Noah Ruan
Link to comment
Share on other sites

one thing to recall: Andor is quite a bit larger (at least I interpret it that way from the maps I see in the books; if I'm wrong about that, ignore this post) than most of the other nations around that part of the world, and a large portion of it is workable and therefore desirable for people to inhabit/own as farmland.

Link to comment
Share on other sites

one thing to recall: Andor is quite a bit larger (at least I interpret it that way from the maps I see in the books; if I'm wrong about that, ignore this post) than most of the other nations around that part of the world, and a large portion of it is workable and therefore desirable for people to inhabit/own as farmland.

 

You're right. Andor seems to be nearly three times the size of France. Given that France had a population of 15-18 million in the year 1500 I think doubters are wrong.

Link to comment
Share on other sites

I think it might be useful to compare Tar Valon to Constantinople, which was , by far, the largest city in Europe thorughout much of the middle ages with a population of about 1,000,000. At the same time, the largest cities in the rest of Europe had nowhere near that size population. That being the case, considering what Mr. Jordan had to say on the matter, I would guess that the population of Randland was somewhat larger than Eurpoe of the same period. This is due mainly to the fact that while the technological level of each is comprable, the health of both populations are not. Europe of the 16Th centrury was just recovering from the devastation of the black death (which killed one third to one half of the population) and was still racked by plagues and starvation, not to mention generally very poor medical care. On the other hand, Randland, seems to have never suffered anything comparable to the plague (except during the Trolloc Wars which were two thousand years in the past ) and the quality of health care is much, much highe. A healthier population is a larger population.

 

Still, the books make it clear that the population is declining and large sections of most nations are not populated. Since that means that there has been a decline in land dedicated to farming,I'd make the over all population level to be in the low miliions, no more. Without farms , you can't maintain a large population. People need to eat and cities don't produce lots of food.

Link to comment
Share on other sites

Even if you only accept RJ's word, the numbers don't play nice.

 

If Tar Valon has 500k to 700k, and even if only 1% of the population can channel, there should be 5000-7000 channelers just in that city alone. Even if the Aes Sedai never go recruiting, surely they'd run into some of these women from time to time? Also, 5k is higher than the combined total of all Randland channelers combined, as far as I know.

 

Even if there are 10,000 channelers in Randland, that's *still* only 1 million total pop, if 1% is accurate.

 

With a total Randland population of, say, 100 million, there should be a million channelers. Unless the number of non-sparkers is massive, RJ wasn't giving accurate numbers somewhere.

 

This leaves us with several possibilities:

 

1) He massively overstated the percentage of people who can channel. 1% of a huge number is still a huge number. Perhaps he meant something much smaller, like 0.00001% (which would be 1k channelers in a 100 million population). This seems the most likely to me.

 

2) He massively overstated the population of the cities and countries. The countries don't even take up all the available land, and there seems to be an awful lot of empty space between cities.

 

3) He was just giving numbers off the cuff and hadn't though about it very much.

 

4) If 1% is the right number, since we don't see huge numbers of channelers running around, the vast majority must be non-sparkers who are never discovered by their culture's channeling body. I suppose this is possible.

Link to comment
Share on other sites

Okay, firstly we do know that the number of non-sparkers is massive, and we know this from the Seanchan. Damane roughly live around seven times longer than sul'dam (whom RJ confirmed do not slow). Despite this, and despite the fact that not every woman who tests positive to be sul'dam trains to it, there are still a great many more sul'dam than damane. Essentially what this means is the non-sparkers produced in the last three generations (60-66 years) exceed all of the sparkers of the last thirty-three generations (640-704), and by a considerable amount.

 

Now, obviously this ignores things like the damane attrition in battle (which honestly would probably strike sul'dam too), the existence of weaker damane that may not reach these ages, etc, but for a rough chart it already shows us that the ratio of sparker to non sparker is already far greater than 1 in every 10. Indeed, the way Renna spoke of it sounds like alot of sul'dam--so lets say for the sake of argument there were more along the lines of one damane to every five sul'dam, which would make it 1 in every 50, and it could even be substantially higher--we know some who test positive don't train for sul'dam--with that sort of damane to sul'dam ratio, that may be a lot of women who simple say 'well, there's too many sul'dam as it is. Maybe I'll be a lawyer like Ma always wanted'.

 

But even saying 1 in 50, lets take it back to Tar Valon. 5,000 potential channelers (I honestly trust the 500,000 citing more, dunno why). Of that half would be men, so 2,500 potential female channelers. 1 in 50 a sparker. That's 50 which is not a lot--oh, if they all popped up at once it might recieve an eyelid flash, but over the course of 80 years (which would be the generational pool Tar Valon's population would have bred them into)? Some would have died from lack of training (possibly the full 3 in 4. Tar Valon, of all places, is the sort where an Aes Sedai wouldn't look into a random channeling, and the dibilitations caused by learning to channel are not so bad that you'd seek a sisters help--it is said time and again even those in Tar Valon avoid the Tower unless they must. Some would have realised and gone for training, I would think, but just as many may be like Nynaeve or Egwene, with no clue), some would have approached the Tower, of which the vast majority would have been put out and heretofore ignore by the Aes Sedai. Some may even be Aes Sedai now.

 

Now increase the sparker to non-sparker ratio to 1 in every 100. Or 1 in every 200. Seanchan numbers could sustain that, if not much higher.

 

It does fit in. And if the number of sparkers is very low, then the vast majority of women (hundreds of thousands) who can channel would live their entire lives never realising thanks to the Aes Sedai attitude toward recruitment.

Link to comment
Share on other sites

Okay, firstly we do know that the number of non-sparkers is massive, and we know this from the Seanchan. Damane roughly live around seven times longer than sul'dam (whom RJ confirmed do not slow). Despite this, and despite the fact that not every woman who tests positive to be sul'dam trains to it, there are still a great many more sul'dam than damane. Essentially what this means is the non-sparkers produced in the last three generations (60-66 years) exceed all of the sparkers of the last thirty-three generations (640-704), and by a considerable amount.

 

Now, obviously this ignores things like the damane attrition in battle (which honestly would probably strike sul'dam too), the existence of weaker damane that may not reach these ages, etc, but for a rough chart it already shows us that the ratio of sparker to non sparker is already far greater than 1 in every 10. Indeed, the way Renna spoke of it sounds like alot of sul'dam--so lets say for the sake of argument there were more along the lines of one damane to every five sul'dam, which would make it 1 in every 50, and it could even be substantially higher--we know some who test positive don't train for sul'dam--with that sort of damane to sul'dam ratio, that may be a lot of women who simple say 'well, there's too many sul'dam as it is. Maybe I'll be a lawyer like Ma always wanted'.

 

But even saying 1 in 50, lets take it back to Tar Valon. 5,000 potential channelers (I honestly trust the 500,000 citing more, dunno why). Of that half would be men, so 2,500 potential female channelers. 1 in 50 a sparker. That's 50 which is not a lot--oh, if they all popped up at once it might recieve an eyelid flash, but over the course of 80 years (which would be the generational pool Tar Valon's population would have bred them into)? Some would have died from lack of training (possibly the full 3 in 4. Tar Valon, of all places, is the sort where an Aes Sedai wouldn't look into a random channeling, and the dibilitations caused by learning to channel are not so bad that you'd seek a sisters help--it is said time and again even those in Tar Valon avoid the Tower unless they must. Some would have realised and gone for training, I would think, but just as many may be like Nynaeve or Egwene, with no clue), some would have approached the Tower, of which the vast majority would have been put out and heretofore ignore by the Aes Sedai. Some may even be Aes Sedai now.

 

Now increase the sparker to non-sparker ratio to 1 in every 100. Or 1 in every 200. Seanchan numbers could sustain that, if not much higher.

 

It does fit in. And if the number of sparkers is very low, then the vast majority of women (hundreds of thousands) who can channel would live their entire lives never realising thanks to the Aes Sedai attitude toward recruitment.

 

You, sir, deserve a standing ovation. And of that small percentage of sparkers, how many would even be strong enough to pass the test to become Aes Sedai or even to receive training? I forget whether or not Morgase was a sparker, but how many of that 1% are similar to her?

Edited by Agitel
Link to comment
Share on other sites

I agree about the ovation...thank you very much luckers.

 

And about the channelers strength, its a clock division. (as per RJ) that,means most are average, and only very few are like morgase and lanfear. (who represent the bottem and top of possible strength respectively)

Link to comment
Share on other sites

I agree about the ovation...thank you very much luckers.

 

And about the channelers strength, its a clock division. (as per RJ) that,means most are average, and only very few are like morgase and lanfear. (who represent the bottem and top of possible strength respectively)

Interesting, do you have the source for that? Not that I'm doubting what you've read but there's so many conflicting quotes out there that people take for granted. Intuitively I would have guessed the opposite, that there are plenty of people on the lower end who never had any idea that they could channel if even less than Morgase.

 

Sorry for the off-topic, I just can't let such interesting subtopics go unresearched. :biggrin:

 

 

Edited by Alric
Link to comment
Share on other sites

Its bit bit hard to quote using a phone, but first time.on pc i will get back here and try.

 

Its the same memory that tells me that you'vd named yourself after siuan's warder. He's never been seen onscreen.

 

But i'll be back.

Edited by Gaidar
Link to comment
Share on other sites

Okay, firstly we do know that the number of non-sparkers is massive, and we know this from the Seanchan. Damane roughly live around seven times longer than sul'dam (whom RJ confirmed do not slow). Despite this, and despite the fact that not every woman who tests positive to be sul'dam trains to it, there are still a great many more sul'dam than damane. Essentially what this means is the non-sparkers produced in the last three generations (60-66 years) exceed all of the sparkers of the last thirty-three generations (640-704), and by a considerable amount.

 

Now, obviously this ignores things like the damane attrition in battle (which honestly would probably strike sul'dam too), the existence of weaker damane that may not reach these ages, etc, but for a rough chart it already shows us that the ratio of sparker to non sparker is already far greater than 1 in every 10. Indeed, the way Renna spoke of it sounds like alot of sul'dam--so lets say for the sake of argument there were more along the lines of one damane to every five sul'dam, which would make it 1 in every 50, and it could even be substantially higher--we know some who test positive don't train for sul'dam--with that sort of damane to sul'dam ratio, that may be a lot of women who simple say 'well, there's too many sul'dam as it is. Maybe I'll be a lawyer like Ma always wanted'.

 

But even saying 1 in 50, lets take it back to Tar Valon. 5,000 potential channelers (I honestly trust the 500,000 citing more, dunno why). Of that half would be men, so 2,500 potential female channelers. 1 in 50 a sparker. That's 50 which is not a lot--oh, if they all popped up at once it might recieve an eyelid flash, but over the course of 80 years (which would be the generational pool Tar Valon's population would have bred them into)? Some would have died from lack of training (possibly the full 3 in 4. Tar Valon, of all places, is the sort where an Aes Sedai wouldn't look into a random channeling, and the dibilitations caused by learning to channel are not so bad that you'd seek a sisters help--it is said time and again even those in Tar Valon avoid the Tower unless they must. Some would have realised and gone for training, I would think, but just as many may be like Nynaeve or Egwene, with no clue), some would have approached the Tower, of which the vast majority would have been put out and heretofore ignore by the Aes Sedai. Some may even be Aes Sedai now.

 

Now increase the sparker to non-sparker ratio to 1 in every 100. Or 1 in every 200. Seanchan numbers could sustain that, if not much higher.

 

It does fit in. And if the number of sparkers is very low, then the vast majority of women (hundreds of thousands) who can channel would live their entire lives never realising thanks to the Aes Sedai attitude toward recruitment.

 

I aboslutley agree with you. When you also look at the numbers of the novices of all ages Egwene managed to dig up on their marching (about a 1000?), and considering how many men there is now in the Black Tower... We see with the men, that sparkers might be much rarer than the ones that can be taught; it all fits very well. If you say that for the men, i.e. 1 of 10 sparks, then the Red Ajah would be overrun with work. So my personal theory is that in men, it might even be as low as 1 in 100, but that is pure speculation on my part. Taim said he would be able to match the White Tower in a year if Im not very wrong, and unless there is a higher percentage of possible channelers, I think that must mean that the percentage born with the spark is even smaller than for female, but I have no other evidence to back that up.

 

A bit to the side of the original topic, sorry.

Link to comment
Share on other sites

I think the spark percentage is probably about equal, but tapering off into lower and lower numbers. They have been gentling men, after which they usually die, and Aes Sedai rarely have kids, so most of those born with the spark are not reproducing. At least, that is the way I see it from here.

Link to comment
Share on other sites

This whole debate of the 1% feels like residual Occupy Wall Street talk. :tongue:

 

 

Also- I am midway through book 4 and guys (gals) having never met anyone that even knew about the books I am absolutely blown away with the enthusiasm for just my silly little question. This is awesome!

 

Having said all that - I feel very underprepared to comment on any of this with any real confidence but perhaps.... and maybe this is kind of a weird comment to throw out there.... but as I understand it the number of respectable channelers .... no, even just channelers in general..,during the books is dropping very oddly at this point.

 

So my question centers a bit around this comment made above by Quiet Aiel

Aes Sedai rarely have kids, so most of those born with the spark are not reproducing.

 

Without any spoilers if possible - is channeling a genetic "thing"? And if so.... shouldn't most of the population of Randland BE channelers? However, they fall on the scale or not..... natural selection would eventually (over a 3,000 year period maybe not so much) overcome. Those that can channel have an obvious advantage of living longer, healing deeper physical wounds, etc.

Link to comment
Share on other sites

Guest
This topic is now closed to further replies.
 Share


×
×
  • Create New...