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Egwene's Arc (Full Spoilers)

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Guest Anon

Like apparently a good many here, Egwene's end caught me off guard as well, largely for reasons already quoted in this thread: the slow build up to her role as a restorative Amyrlin for the White Tower and the world at large, her building resistance to the Seanchan,  the fact that she had one of the longest potential lifespans of any character in the series, her general central position on the overall plot, and her continuing ability to knock down bigger and badder opponents as the need arose.  I think there's a fair chance that if I had been asked to name the one character most likely to survive the final book, I'd have guessed Eg.   Instead, she's the only main character to die even by the conclusion of the Last Battle itself; indeed, as Moraine did in fact finally return, Egwene is the sole death amongst arguably the most central characters aligned with the Light to have died in the entirety of the series! Alright sure, Birgitte as well, but she was back like five seconds later and then was reborn five minutes after that  -- to shortly be reuinted with Gaidal -- so hardly a sad story there.  To make Egwene the sole bearer of that price and at that point in her character progression felt a little jarring at first, so I understand why some have expressed that it felt a little disjointed in how it was approached.  I was one of those also already well-represented here, who did not count Egwene as amongst their favourite characters in the earlier books -- or more specifically in the early-middle series, where she often seemed to be adopting some of the worst and most arrogant aspects of the Aes Sedai a little too quickly and landing herself in a lot of trouble as a result, basically acting as a living epitome of the concept that "a little knowledge is a dangerous thing."  But she steadily grew in depth and was put through no small amount of genuine hardship along the way, and by the last few books I felt about as invested in her struggles as any in the series.  In fact, of all the characters whose stories Sanderson was called upon to resolve in the previous two books, I think Egwene is arguably the one he succeeded with most gracefully.  So yes, to see her cut down in her prime was a bit confusing at first.   But as I was finishing the last chapters of this last book, it began to occur to me, perhaps that was the very idea of her sacrifice; yes, Egwene should have been a beacon for light in the world for centuries to come and yes, she had a lot of work ahead of her in the dawn of the Fourth Age, helping the White Tower restore its relevance in a world now crowded with many other powerful and skilled channeler groups and keeping the world from falling into chaos under the sway of the rapidly changing social, political, and technological changes (conventional and One Power-related) being hinted at by the end of the series.  But instead she was called upon to sacrifice everything she had ahead of her and the force of that light was exhausted in one brilliant moment.  And when I began to think of her death in those terms, I began to see where this sacrifice may have long been foreshadowed in her story arc.  Certainly Egwene had two major fears: losing control of her ability to choose her own destiny (especially after being a damane) and failing those who depended on her.   In particular, I was reminded of her testing to be raised to Accepted, where the three arches forced her to confront her worst fears, and I went back to re-read it (for the first time in almost two decades, in fact).   In all three of her visions she is forced to abandon others to grim fates, including Rand in each of the different timelines/visions.  As the ordeal comes to an end, her pain and anger are as palpable as they are at any part in the series:

“Is that all there is for me?” she demanded. “To abandon him again and again. To betray him, fail him, again and again? Is that what there is for me?”

But in the end Egwene had a finish which left her with no bitterness.  Her sense of responsibility had grown to encompass the very world itself rather than Rand specifically, but her devotion and love were no less full despite it and in the most desperate moment of all, she was there for Rand and everyone else that depended on her and she threw herself forward without regret.   Maybe there was something lost in the execution that made it feel so out of place; barring a portal stone to check out an alternate reality where RJ finished the story, we will of course never know.  But looking at the path that led this girl-become-woman/woman-become-leader to her final stand, I can't help but feel that, as the greatest moment of loss in a long tale goes, you could do worse than the death of Egwene Sedai. 
 

 

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Guest Anon

Just wanted to add, my vote for the content of the last ebook edition cover would be Rand at the monument to the Last Battle in the Emmond's Field of the first world he weaves, with Egwene's statue at the center.  I feel it would be very fitting to the title especially. :)

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Rand squeezed his eyes shut, thinking of all those who had died for him.  Of Egwene, whom he had sworn to himself to protect.

You fool.  Her voice in his head.  Fond, but sharp.

...

Let go, Rand.  Let us die for what we believe, and do not try to steal that from us.  You have embraced your death.  Embrace mine.

Tears leaked from the corners of his eyes.  "I'm sorry," he whispered.

Why?

"I've failed."

No.  Not yet you haven't

The Dark One flayed him.  He huddled before that vast nothingness, unable to move.  He screamed in agony.

And then, he let go.

 

Redemption to the Redeemer!

Perhaps we are getting confused as to the order of importance of Egwene's accomplishments at her death.  Actually it may be this scene which is the most important of her accomplishments in WOT.  Rand's guilt list has been his tragic flaw throughout almost the entire series.  In book after book characters have been arguing with him over it's unreasonableness but none have been able to argue successfully.  In the beginning Rand tried to make himself hard and kill off his emotions.  Later compassion led him to attempt to embrace the suffering of others.  Even then some characters thought there was something wrong with Rand's attitude, but none could change his mind.

Rand accepts the responsibility of redeeming everyone else by sacrificing himself to kill the DO but underneath he, himself has a desperate need of being redeemed.  When he walks into the Pit and fights the DO completely alone he has achieved only partial enlightenment and thus the DO is able to crush him.  

Looked at this way it might make more sense why Egwene would be the one from the original EF group that needed to die.  She was the first one that he worried about getting killed.  He has been worried about her since day 2 in the barn in EF when she shows up with her sack demanding to go on their adventure without understanding what was at stake.  When they are separated at Shadar Logoth he refuses to accept the possibility she is dead.  Again and again he makes it clear that her death would be unacceptable.  In the end Egwene had to be the one to offer Rand his redemption and allow him to complete his path to enlightenment.  It is interesting that in the end it is not Egwene the Amyrlin or Egwene Sedai that is able to do save Rand but just Egwene al'Vere of the TR.  Throughout the series she is driving herself to an extreme or allowing herself to be physically beaten over and over again in order to build herself up and be in control.  That is certainly a pathological pattern of behavior. In her last battle she is depicted as being in an angry rage the entire time till she cast the flame of Tar Valon.  After that she is able to let go herself.  Perhaps she also was able to achieve a redemption from her own inner demons in the end.

Of course odds are I am completely wrong but it is an explanation that would foreshadow the ending of the book and there is no way Rand could have won without that scene.

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Guest Egwene Fan

Egwene was my favorite character in the series by far.  We watched her train, and her suffering under Elaida was the absolute best art of the series for me.  The way she handled herself with dignity despite challenges, like a true Queen or Amyrlin would have done.  She was the duly-raise Amyrlin, and it didn't matter if no one else acknowledged it.  The passage where she truly comes into her own by showing Elaida what it means to be Amyrlin at the dinner meant to embarass Egwene was just petry.

 

The whole plotline at that point was very Zen, very reminiscent of some of history's greatest religious martyrs too.  Such a well-written and well-developed part of the story.

 

I'm very much saddened to see her die off, because hers would have been a wonderful storyline to follow for the series to continue....The Aes Sedai led by their greatest Amyrlin every (whom we have known since she was a tavern keepers' daughter)

 

Ah well, I suppose we'll have to settle for the deeds of Mat and Tuon if the series is to go anywhere else from here...

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Guest Fozzle

Egwene was my favourite too, her storyline was so powerful. I was devastated when she died and I realised I wouldn't find out about her leading the Aes Sedai into a wonderful new age she helped bring about. Of course, I wouldn't have found out about that anyway, the way it ended so abruptly. And I did expect someone to die and it was just the kind of thing she'd do... so I can live with it, just about.

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I don't understand why people say her character arc was leading to a death.

 

She was primed to lead the WT for centuries after having JUST consolidated her rule, had major unfinished business with the Seanchan/damane, had just gotten married, Min never mentioned seeing anything about her dying....

 

What am I missing?

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You are missing nothing. I didn't see it coming either but her death had more meaning than Siuan's and Gareth's. There was so much I didn't like about this book.

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I disliked the manner of Siuan and Gareth's deaths too. To be honest, I would have much preferred if they had died when Demandred and Shara arrived and blew up the command tent. That struck at me much more than there eventual death. The only good thing about Siuan's death is that is has a parallel to the way her father died (or whoever it was that died in the anecdote she talks about with Mat in tDR).

 

However, Egwene's death does have much more meaning and it also makes sense. At least to me. See: Terazed's post:

 

 

 

Rand squeezed his eyes shut, thinking of all those who had died for him.  Of Egwene, whom he had sworn to himself to protect.

You fool.  Her voice in his head.  Fond, but sharp.

...

Let go, Rand.  Let us die for what we believe, and do not try to steal that from us.  You have embraced your death.  Embrace mine.

Tears leaked from the corners of his eyes.  "I'm sorry," he whispered.

Why?

"I've failed."

No.  Not yet you haven't

The Dark One flayed him.  He huddled before that vast nothingness, unable to move.  He screamed in agony.

And then, he let go.

 

>Redemption to the Redeemer!

Perhaps we are getting confused as to the order of importance of Egwene's accomplishments at her death.  Actually it may be this scene which is the most important of her accomplishments in WOT.  Rand's guilt list has been his tragic flaw throughout almost the entire series.  In book after book characters have been arguing with him over it's unreasonableness but none have been able to argue successfully.  In the beginning Rand tried to make himself hard and kill off his emotions.  Later compassion led him to attempt to embrace the suffering of others.  Even then some characters thought there was something wrong with Rand's attitude, but none could change his mind.

Rand accepts the responsibility of redeeming everyone else by sacrificing himself to kill the DO but underneath he, himself has a desperate need of being redeemed.  When he walks into the Pit and fights the DO completely alone he has achieved only partial enlightenment and thus the DO is able to crush him.  

Looked at this way it might make more sense why Egwene would be the one from the original EF group that needed to die.  She was the first one that he worried about getting killed.  He has been worried about her since day 2 in the barn in EF when she shows up with her sack demanding to go on their adventure without understanding what was at stake.  When they are separated at Shadar Logoth he refuses to accept the possibility she is dead.  Again and again he makes it clear that her death would be unacceptable.  In the end Egwene had to be the one to offer Rand his redemption and allow him to complete his path to enlightenment.  It is interesting that in the end it is not Egwene the Amyrlin or Egwene Sedai that is able to do save Rand but just Egwene al'Vere of the TR.  Throughout the series she is driving herself to an extreme or allowing herself to be physically beaten over and over again in order to build herself up and be in control.  That is certainly a pathological pattern of behavior. In her last battle she is depicted as being in an angry rage the entire time till she cast the flame of Tar Valon.  After that she is able to let go herself.  Perhaps she also was able to achieve a redemption from her own inner demons in the end.

Of course odds are I am completely wrong but it is an explanation that would foreshadow the ending of the book and there is no way Rand could have won without that scene.

 

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I don't understand why people say her character arc was leading to a death.

 

She was primed to lead the WT for centuries after having JUST consolidated her rule, had major unfinished business with the Seanchan/damane, had just gotten married, Min never mentioned seeing anything about her dying....

 

What am I missing?

 

I don't recall exactly how viewings worked, but it seems that Min wasn't ever really around Egwene post aCoS, meaning that she would never had been able to see any new viewings that would have implicated her death. And we never really got her seeing much besides related to Siuan/The Seanchan in aMoL. (Feel free to correct me if wrong).

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Rand squeezed his eyes shut, thinking of all those who had died for him.  Of Egwene, whom he had sworn to himself to protect.

You fool.  Her voice in his head.  Fond, but sharp.

...

Let go, Rand.  Let us die for what we believe, and do not try to steal that from us.  You have embraced your death.  Embrace mine.

Tears leaked from the corners of his eyes.  "I'm sorry," he whispered.

Why?

"I've failed."

No.  Not yet you haven't

The Dark One flayed him.  He huddled before that vast nothingness, unable to move.  He screamed in agony.

And then, he let go.

 

Redemption to the Redeemer!

Perhaps we are getting confused as to the order of importance of Egwene's accomplishments at her death.  Actually it may be this scene which is the most important of her accomplishments in WOT.  Rand's guilt list has been his tragic flaw throughout almost the entire series.  In book after book characters have been arguing with him over it's unreasonableness but none have been able to argue successfully.  In the beginning Rand tried to make himself hard and kill off his emotions.  Later compassion led him to attempt to embrace the suffering of others.  Even then some characters thought there was something wrong with Rand's attitude, but none could change his mind.

Rand accepts the responsibility of redeeming everyone else by sacrificing himself to kill the DO but underneath he, himself has a desperate need of being redeemed.  When he walks into the Pit and fights the DO completely alone he has achieved only partial enlightenment and thus the DO is able to crush him.  

Looked at this way it might make more sense why Egwene would be the one from the original EF group that needed to die.  She was the first one that he worried about getting killed.  He has been worried about her since day 2 in the barn in EF when she shows up with her sack demanding to go on their adventure without understanding what was at stake.  When they are separated at Shadar Logoth he refuses to accept the possibility she is dead.  Again and again he makes it clear that her death would be unacceptable.  In the end Egwene had to be the one to offer Rand his redemption and allow him to complete his path to enlightenment.  It is interesting that in the end it is not Egwene the Amyrlin or Egwene Sedai that is able to do save Rand but just Egwene al'Vere of the TR.  Throughout the series she is driving herself to an extreme or allowing herself to be physically beaten over and over again in order to build herself up and be in control.  That is certainly a pathological pattern of behavior. In her last battle she is depicted as being in an angry rage the entire time till she cast the flame of Tar Valon.  After that she is able to let go herself.  Perhaps she also was able to achieve a redemption from her own inner demons in the end.

Of course odds are I am completely wrong but it is an explanation that would foreshadow the ending of the book and there is no way Rand could have won without that scene.

 

 

What makes you think that it was Egwene in that scene and not Rand talking to himself?.He was talking to his father just before the Egwene scene and Tam is alive and well. Anyway why would Egwene be any different from the hundereds of other threads which were cut in the LB.She is not a hero of the horn,just a regular soul.So logically there is no way she is talking after her death unless every other common thread in the pattern can linger on after death with memories of past lives.

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I disliked the manner of Siuan and Gareth's deaths too. To be honest, I would have much preferred if they had died when Demandred and Shara arrived and blew up the command tent. That struck at me much more than there eventual death. The only good thing about Siuan's death is that is has a parallel to the way her father died (or whoever it was that died in the anecdote she talks about with Mat in tDR).

 

However, Egwene's death does have much more meaning and it also makes sense. At least to me. See: Terazed's post:

 

 

 

 

Rand squeezed his eyes shut, thinking of all those who had died for him. Of Egwene, whom he had sworn to himself to protect.

You fool. Her voice in his head. Fond, but sharp.

...

Let go, Rand. Let us die for what we believe, and do not try to steal that from us. You have embraced your death. Embrace mine.

Tears leaked from the corners of his eyes. "I'm sorry," he whispered.

Why?

"I've failed."

No. Not yet you haven't

The Dark One flayed him. He huddled before that vast nothingness, unable to move. He screamed in agony.

And then, he let go.

>

>Redemption to the Redeemer!

>
Perhaps we are getting confused as to the order of importance of Egwene's accomplishments at her death. Actually it may be this scene which is the most important of her accomplishments in WOT. Rand's guilt list has been his tragic flaw throughout almost the entire series. In book after book characters have been arguing with him over it's unreasonableness but none have been able to argue successfully. In the beginning Rand tried to make himself hard and kill off his emotions. Later compassion led him to attempt to embrace the suffering of others. Even then some characters thought there was something wrong with Rand's attitude, but none could change his mind.

Rand accepts the responsibility of redeeming everyone else by sacrificing himself to kill the DO but underneath he, himself has a desperate need of being redeemed. When he walks into the Pit and fights the DO completely alone he has achieved only partial enlightenment and thus the DO is able to crush him.

Looked at this way it might make more sense why Egwene would be the one from the original EF group that needed to die. She was the first one that he worried about getting killed. He has been worried about her since day 2 in the barn in EF when she shows up with her sack demanding to go on their adventure without understanding what was at stake. When they are separated at Shadar Logoth he refuses to accept the possibility she is dead. Again and again he makes it clear that her death would be unacceptable. In the end Egwene had to be the one to offer Rand his redemption and allow him to complete his path to enlightenment. It is interesting that in the end it is not Egwene the Amyrlin or Egwene Sedai that is able to do save Rand but just Egwene al'Vere of the TR. Throughout the series she is driving herself to an extreme or allowing herself to be physically beaten over and over again in order to build herself up and be in control. That is certainly a pathological pattern of behavior. In her last battle she is depicted as being in an angry rage the entire time till she cast the flame of Tar Valon. After that she is able to let go herself. Perhaps she also was able to achieve a redemption from her own inner demons in the end.

Of course odds are I am completely wrong but it is an explanation that would foreshadow the ending of the book and there is no way Rand could have won without that scene.

So Egwene's death was a way to raise the stakes for Rand. That makes sense for his character in that scene, but my question was to people that see it as inevitable in the context of *her* character arc, not Rand's.

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Rand squeezed his eyes shut, thinking of all those who had died for him.  Of Egwene, whom he had sworn to himself to protect.

You fool.  Her voice in his head.  Fond, but sharp.

...

Let go, Rand.  Let us die for what we believe, and do not try to steal that from us.  You have embraced your death.  Embrace mine.

Tears leaked from the corners of his eyes.  "I'm sorry," he whispered.

Why?

"I've failed."

No.  Not yet you haven't

The Dark One flayed him.  He huddled before that vast nothingness, unable to move.  He screamed in agony.

And then, he let go.

 

Redemption to the Redeemer!

Perhaps we are getting confused as to the order of importance of Egwene's accomplishments at her death.  Actually it may be this scene which is the most important of her accomplishments in WOT.  Rand's guilt list has been his tragic flaw throughout almost the entire series.  In book after book characters have been arguing with him over it's unreasonableness but none have been able to argue successfully.  In the beginning Rand tried to make himself hard and kill off his emotions.  Later compassion led him to attempt to embrace the suffering of others.  Even then some characters thought there was something wrong with Rand's attitude, but none could change his mind.

Rand accepts the responsibility of redeeming everyone else by sacrificing himself to kill the DO but underneath he, himself has a desperate need of being redeemed.  When he walks into the Pit and fights the DO completely alone he has achieved only partial enlightenment and thus the DO is able to crush him.  

Looked at this way it might make more sense why Egwene would be the one from the original EF group that needed to die.  She was the first one that he worried about getting killed.  He has been worried about her since day 2 in the barn in EF when she shows up with her sack demanding to go on their adventure without understanding what was at stake.  When they are separated at Shadar Logoth he refuses to accept the possibility she is dead.  Again and again he makes it clear that her death would be unacceptable.  In the end Egwene had to be the one to offer Rand his redemption and allow him to complete his path to enlightenment.  It is interesting that in the end it is not Egwene the Amyrlin or Egwene Sedai that is able to do save Rand but just Egwene al'Vere of the TR.  Throughout the series she is driving herself to an extreme or allowing herself to be physically beaten over and over again in order to build herself up and be in control.  That is certainly a pathological pattern of behavior. In her last battle she is depicted as being in an angry rage the entire time till she cast the flame of Tar Valon.  After that she is able to let go herself.  Perhaps she also was able to achieve a redemption from her own inner demons in the end.

Of course odds are I am completely wrong but it is an explanation that would foreshadow the ending of the book and there is no way Rand could have won without that scene.

 

What makes you think that it was Egwene in that scene and not Rand talking to himself?.He was talking to his father just before the Egwene scene and Tam is alive and well.

 

Let's have a look, eh?

 

 

Let go. His fathers voice.

“I have to save them . . .” Rand whispered.

Let them sacrifice. You can’t do this yourself.

“I have to . . . That’s what it means . . .” The Dark One’s destruction crawled on him like a thousand crows, picking at his flesh, pulling it from his bones. He could barely think through the pressure and the sense of loss. The death of Egwene and so many others.

Let go.

It is their choice to make.

 

When Tam's voice speaks in Rand's head, Rand doesn't think Tam is speaking to him. Nor is the voice described as having any kind of tone or emotion. Most importantly, he's remembering what his father said, not having a completely new conversation. Now compare that to when Egwene talks:

 

 

You fool. Her voice in his head. Fond, but sharp.

“Egwene?”

 

Right away, Rand himself treats the voice differently than he did his father's. He asks out loud if Egwene was speaking. Plus, her voice has a tone, fond but sharp, which is very different from just a voice in your head from a memory.

 

 

Am I not allowed to be a hero, too?

 

“It’s not that . .

You march to your death. Yet you forbid anyone else from doing so?

“I . . ”

Let go, Rand. Let us die for what we believe, and do not try to steal that from us. You have embraced your death. Embrace mine.

 

Tears leaked from the corners of his eyes. “I’m sorry,” he whispered.

 

Why?

“I’ve failed.”

No. Not yet you haven’t.

 

The rest is an actual conversation. And in that conversation, Egwene's voice is aware of its death, and is also using a specific phrase "embrace death", that the Wise Ones used with her, but which Rand himself has never heard, and has never heard her use. With Tam, Rand imagined him saying the very things he'd said before. But that can't explain Egwene's side of this conversation. And certainly, if she was not actually conversing, Rand has no reason to call her name out loud.

 

Anyway why would Egwene be any different from the hundereds of other threads which were cut in the LB.She is not a hero of the horn,just a regular soul.So logically there is no way she is talking after her death unless every other common thread in the pattern can linger on after death with memories of past lives.

First of all, we don't know she isn't a Hero, or isn't in some way tied to Rand's soul. We do know that in Falme, she also felt a tug from Rand like Min and Elayne did, but Nynaeve did not, indicating at least some connection. Then, her Accepted test, past present and future, were all about Rand. Plus, of course, her life closely parallels Rand. There's enough hints they're tied together more than being friends. Who knows how any of that affected what Egwene's soul could do after death?

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Ah, I see. Well, I tried to look around, (mainly using the wiki for dreams and viewings) and didn't see anything that may have referenced. However, I am led to believe there was both foreshadowing in ToM and early on in aMoL, though I can't remember exactly. It's difficult to tell with Min's viewings, because as I said, Min doesn't see Egwene at all for a huge chunk of the series. So yeah, not sure how well her death was foreshadowed prior to Brandon taking over the helm. But then again, I doubt something of that magnitude would be left out of RJ's notes (but I could be horribly wrong here).

 

I guess Rand always swearing to protect her early in the series could count... She was also built up as quite the Mary Sue, and it 'could' be that Jordan had planned her death because of this, or vice versa.

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Ah, I see. Well, I tried to look around, (mainly using the wiki for dreams and viewings) and didn't see anything that may have referenced. However, I am led to believe there was both foreshadowing in ToM and early on in aMoL, though I can't remember exactly. It's difficult to tell with Min's viewings, because as I said, Min doesn't see Egwene at all for a huge chunk of the series. So yeah, not sure how well her death was foreshadowed prior to Brandon taking over the helm. But then again, I doubt something of that magnitude would be left out of RJ's notes (but I could be horribly wrong here).

 

I guess Rand always swearing to protect her early in the series could count... She was also built up as quite the Mary Sue, and it 'could' be that Jordan had planned her death because of this, or vice versa.

The best foreshadowing I've heard of is the reference to "The Year of the Four Amyrlins". Siuan mentions it as being a part of early Tower history, which she said the Tower split greatly resembled. In the end, "nearly everyone came to grief". Well, this was also a year with Four Amyrlins, and all but Cadsuane came to grief. 

 

Another strong indicator was the heavy parallels with Rand. Now, Rand didn't actually die, but the world at large does think he's dead, which is the more comparable part, I think. 

 

And the source of her name, Guinevere, who was to be burned at the stake, but was rescued by Arthur's ally Lancelot, and ended up entering a convent where she spends the rest of her life. This was reversed for Egwene, who never betrayed Rand, and Taim, the Lancelot stand-in, doesn't sleep with her but instead tries to kill her. Then Egwene dies in a "pyre" of her own making, giving up her life in the "convent" that is the WT. Other players are around too: Mordred (Demandred), Gawain (Gawyn), etc. but all with twisted roles. So that was a strong parallel too.

 

Lastly, there is her dream, where she sees one path where she marries Gawyn, one where she does not, one where he lives a long life, and one where he dies violently. She never knew which path was matched with which. We know now...

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So, year of 4 Amyrlins similarity, parallels to Rand who didn't die, a namesake who didn't die, and a foreshadowing of her husband dying.

 

I don't have a problem with her dying as a plot choice, but none of that indicates it very much to me.

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The thing is, if her post mortem conversation with Rand was her biggest accomplishment, she could have easily done this without all the build up during the whole series.
She could just be one of the many AS on the battlefield, do the kamikaze thing and then speak to Rand.

 

Like I said in my previous post, all the chalenges she faced in the series, were shaping her to be the only person who could unite the channelers. Knowing the major players from the inside.

And it was all in vain.

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Rand has not heard the phrase, "embrace death" after staying pretty much with Aiel for the last 2 years? That would be quite a stretch considering that is a common phrase among the Aiel.


 

We know she is not a hero because she does not show up when the Heros are summoned.Simple.Neither is LPD from the AOL AFAIK. And her life mirrored LTT. I know it is difficult for you to hear this but Egwene is a normal thread a normal soul. Her soul was never the equal of Rand's nor of any of the other heros.

 

As for tugs from Rand, Perrin and Mat got them all the time and neither 2 of them are heros.I would say that is just a matter of the Tavern influence of Rand manifesting itself.If he needs something the pattern nudges that along.Similar to Verin when she ways she was "led: by something towards Mat.

Edited by XXX47

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@xxx

 

Serious question for you here. Why are you so adamant about not giving her any credit whatsoever for her role in the LB(and you laughingly say to fionwe "I know this is hard for you to hear" in your post above. Can you not see how ironic that is given the topic)? You have moved the goal posts so many times about what her involvement would be. Pre AMoL you were saying she would do nothing of importance at the LB, had nothing to offer Rand in terms of information for sealing the DO, had no right to question his plans, the WT's time had past, etc. Now that it is plain how things had to fall out and that she played about as large a role as anyone aside from Rand you still try to deny what was written. What is the big deal to just admitting what happens in the books? Rand is the DR, the CoL...Egwene doing what she did does not in anyway threaten who he is or take away from how big his contributions were.

Edited by Suttree

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And the source of her name, Guinevere, who was to be burned at the stake, but was rescued by Arthur's ally Lancelot, and ended up entering a convent where she spends the rest of her life. This was reversed for Egwene, who never betrayed Rand, and Taim, the Lancelot stand-in, doesn't sleep with her but instead tries to kill her. Then Egwene dies in a "pyre" of her own making, giving up her life in the "convent" that is the WT. Other players are around too: Mordred (Demandred), Gawain (Gawyn), etc. but all with twisted roles. So that was a strong parallel too.

When I have tried to find the characters in the source material I started with Rand as the Fisher King as well as Arthur.  I quickly discovered that Rand has characteristics of all three major Grail Kings, the disembodied voice of Titurel, the first grail king, the dolorous wound of Anfortas, the Fisher King, and most importantly Parcival who heals the dolorous wound and becomes the new grail king.  If you look up Parcival (Percival, Parsifal, etc) you will see a lot of Rand in his stories.

 

Looking in the various Parcival tales the are two characters who stand out as possible models for Egwene (In addition to Guinevere) Sigune and Orgeleuse (aka The Proud Woman, The Hauty Woman, the Loathsome Damsel/Beautiful Damsel/Grail Bearer).  Sigune was a childhood friend of Parcival.  She later left and was raised for a time along with Parcival's future wife and cousin Blanchefleur (White Flower).  Parcival gets Blanchefleur pregnant with twins by the way and she does not tell him she is pregnant till the end of the story.  Sigune's new husband dies in a duel with a man who really wanted to face Parcival.  After that Sigune pulls out all her hair and becomes a personification of Lady Fortune.  Parcival runs into Sigune 3 times.  Each time she tells him something critical to his quest.  She chews him out for failing to ask the right question the first time he has a chance to heal the dolorous wound.  At the end of the tale she seals herself in a building with no windows or doors along with her dead husband and dies.  Parcival find the pair and buries them.

 

I think much of Egwene's personality comes from the second woman, Orgeleuse (aka The Proud Woman, The Hauty Woman, the Loathsome Damsel/Beautiful Damsel/Grail Bearer).  This woman in the grail stores is Gawen's future wife.  The names pretty much tell the story as far as her personality.  The Fisher King was once in love with her and he receives the dolorous wound while fighting for her (Rand at Falme?).  In one version the knight that causes the wound was once rejected admission to the grail knights by Titurel, the first grail king, and he vowed revenge.  (Later in that version we learn that this knight is Mara the God of Death who tempts the future Buddha with 3 women).  She asks Parcival to work for her but he rejects the offer.  She also gets mad at Parcival for failing to ask the correct question that would heal the dolorous wound.  She knows he screwed up because she is the Grail Bearer and was there when he messed up.  In the tales either Gawen falls in love with her or agrees to marry her because of King Arthur.  In their courtship she treats him horrendously nearly getting him killed several times but he does not give up on her.  Only when Gawen learns to follow her commands without question does she agree to marry him.  When he does she reveals she was under a curse that made her be cruel and that Gawen has lifted the curse.

 

Depending on the version these two women are sometimes combined into one character or broken up into many women.  There is more to say on the subject but I will stop here for now.

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@xxx

 

Serious question for you here. Why are you so adamant about not giving her any credit whatsoever for her role in the LB(and you laughingly say to fionwe "I know this is hard for you to hear" in your post above. Can you not see how ironic that is given the topic)? You have moved the goal posts so many times about what her involvement would be. Pre AMoL you were saying she would do nothing of importance at the LB, had nothing to offer Rand in terms of information for sealing the DO, had no right to question his plans, the WT's time had past, etc. Now that it is plain how things had to fall out and that she played about as large a role as anyone aside from Rand you still try to deny what was written. What is the big deal to just admitting what happens in the books? Rand is the DR, the CoL...Egwene doing what she did does not in anyway threaten who he is or take away from how big his contributions were. Do you just not want to admit that you were wrong?

Of course he won't admit anything. His conception of the series depends on his idea that Egwene is a nobody. Why would something like facts change that?

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And the source of her name, Guinevere, who was to be burned at the stake, but was rescued by Arthur's ally Lancelot, and ended up entering a convent where she spends the rest of her life. This was reversed for Egwene, who never betrayed Rand, and Taim, the Lancelot stand-in, doesn't sleep with her but instead tries to kill her. Then Egwene dies in a "pyre" of her own making, giving up her life in the "convent" that is the WT. Other players are around too: Mordred (Demandred), Gawain (Gawyn), etc. but all with twisted roles. So that was a strong parallel too.

When I have tried to find the characters in the source material I started with Rand as the Fisher King as well as Arthur.  I quickly discovered that Rand has characteristics of all three major Grail Kings, the disembodied voice of Titurel, the first grail king, the dolorous wound of Anfortas, the Fisher King, and most importantly Parcival who heals the dolorous wound and becomes the new grail king.  If you look up Parcival (Percival, Parsifal, etc) you will see a lot of Rand in his stories.

 

Looking in the various Parcival tales the are two characters who stand out as possible models for Egwene (In addition to Guinevere) Sigune and Orgeleuse (aka The Proud Woman, The Hauty Woman, the Loathsome Damsel/Beautiful Damsel/Grail Bearer).  Sigune was a childhood friend of Parcival.  She later left and was raised for a time along with Parcival's future wife and cousin Blanchefleur (White Flower).  Parcival gets Blanchefleur pregnant with twins by the way and she does not tell him she is pregnant till the end of the story.  Sigune's new husband dies in a duel with a man who really wanted to face Parcival.  After that Sigune pulls out all her hair and becomes a personification of Lady Fortune.  Parcival runs into Sigune 3 times.  Each time she tells him something critical to his quest.  She chews him out for failing to ask the right question the first time he has a chance to heal the dolorous wound.  At the end of the tale she seals herself in a building with no windows or doors along with her dead husband and dies.  Parcival find the pair and buries them.

 

I think much of Egwene's personality comes from the second woman, Orgeleuse (aka The Proud Woman, The Hauty Woman, the Loathsome Damsel/Beautiful Damsel/Grail Bearer).  This woman in the grail stores is Gawen's future wife.  The names pretty much tell the story as far as her personality.  The Fisher King was once in love with her and he receives the dolorous wound while fighting for her (Rand at Falme?).  In one version the knight that causes the wound was once rejected admission to the grail knights by Titurel, the first grail king, and he vowed revenge.  (Later in that version we learn that this knight is Mara the God of Death who tempts the future Buddha with 3 women).  She asks Parcival to work for her but he rejects the offer.  She also gets mad at Parcival for failing to ask the correct question that would heal the dolorous wound.  She knows he screwed up because she is the Grail Bearer and was there when he messed up.  In the tales either Gawen falls in love with her or agrees to marry her because of King Arthur.  In their courtship she treats him horrendously nearly getting him killed several times but he does not give up on her.  Only when Gawen learns to follow her commands without question does she agree to marry him.  When he does she reveals she was under a curse that made her be cruel and that Gawen has lifted the curse.

 

Depending on the version these two women are sometimes combined into one character or broken up into many women.  There is more to say on the subject but I will stop here for now.

Interesting stuff. Thanks!

 

And stoper: her postmortem talk is not her biggest accomplishment, because I think its matched by her sealing the rift in the Patter to prevent the DO from entering. She had her own sealing. Heck, for all we know, the original Sealing by LTT was similar to her anti-Balefire weave. Its certainly interesting that the two people who achieved any kind of Sealing were both capable of making Cuendiallar (Rand says the Seals were LTT's own work). I suspect there's a link, there.

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...And stoper: her postmortem talk is not her biggest accomplishment, because I think its matched by her sealing the rift in the Patter to prevent the DO from entering. She had her own sealing. Heck, for all we know, the original Sealing by LTT was similar to her anti-Balefire weave. Its certainly interesting that the two people who achieved any kind of Sealing were both capable of making Cuendiallar (Rand says the Seals were LTT's own work). I suspect there's a link, there.

My point still stands. That too could be done without everything that happened to her in the books.

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Rand has not heard the phrase, "embrace death" after staying pretty much with Aiel for the last 2 years? That would be quite a stretch considering that is a common phrase among the Aiel.

 

We know she is not a hero because she does not show up when the Heros are summoned.Simple.Neither is LPD from the AOL AFAIK. And her life mirrored LTT. I know it is difficult for you to hear this but Egwene is a normal thread a normal soul. Her soul was never the equal of Rand's nor of any of the other heros.

 

As for tugs from Rand, Perrin and Mat got them all the time and neither 2 of them are heros.I would say that is just a matter of the Tavern influence of Rand manifesting itself.If he needs something the pattern nudges that along.Similar to Verin when she ways she was "led: by something towards Mat.

 

1. You don't have to be a Hero of the Horn to be a hero.  There is a DIFFERENCE

2. Heroes of the Horn have MANY incarnations.  Like Birgitte.  I doubt myself that Egwene is a hero of the horn but your outright dismissal of her accomplishments irks me enough that I have to point out the flaws in your statements.  Rand al'Thor himself was called Lews Therin by Artur himself, and the only thing similar about the Rand and Lews Therin in appearance was their height (as Lanfear mentions in TSR).  As such she could easily be one of the female heroes of the horn... and that Mat didn't recognize her for whatever reason.

3. Mat himself could have earned a place as a Hero of the Horn many times over for his deeds as was mentioned in AMoL.  But he is still NOT a Hero of the Horn.  I'd say that his soul is worth just as much as any Hero of the Horn.  Why can't the same be said of Egwene?  You can't say that just because Egwene is not a Hero of the Horn that she is not an equal to any of them.

Edited by Arani Lepenque Aes Sedai

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...And stoper: her postmortem talk is not her biggest accomplishment, because I think its matched by her sealing the rift in the Patter to prevent the DO from entering. She had her own sealing. Heck, for all we know, the original Sealing by LTT was similar to her anti-Balefire weave. Its certainly interesting that the two people who achieved any kind of Sealing were both capable of making Cuendiallar (Rand says the Seals were LTT's own work). I suspect there's a link, there.

My point still stands. That too could be done without everything that happened to her in the books.

So basically, with no introduction, a random Aes Sedai would heal the Pattern, then her voice would speak to Rand? Wonderful...

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Like many other WoT fans, I was very surprised by Egwene's death.  I found her death very disappointing in terms of the future of the White Tower, because of the many great reforms that she instituted or suggested, such as accepting older novices, maintaining ties with other channeling groups (Windfinders, Wise Ones, etc.), and allowing Aes Sedai to remove the oaths and retire as part of the Kin.  It seemed to me that she would be a great leader to take the Aes Sedai into the Fourth Age, and I thought that that was exactly how she was being set up by RJ.

 

One thing besides Egwene's death that bothered me about her story arc was that we didn't get to see her and Gawyn getting married.  After all of the build-up of Egwene's and Gawyn's feelings for each other, and their potential future together -- a build-up which spanned, what, maybe half the series at least? -- we just got a casual mention that, oh, yeah, by the way, Gawyn is Egwene's husband now -- they got married three days ago.  I found that to be very anti-climactic.  Not that I would have wanted to read a big mushy wedding scene (much less a mushy honeymoon scene!), but I thought the story called for more than just a casual mention that they are married now.

 

One more thing on Egwene:  What was the point of Leilwin shadowing Egwene throughout the book, and eventually becoming her Warder for all of about two pages?  Was there some significance to this that I missed?

Edited by Paul H

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