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Map roshar

Map by Isaac Stewart

Endpaper 2

Endpaper by Isaac Stewart

Roshar is the name of the world, system, and the main continent on the world where the epic fantasy series, The Stormlight Archive, takes place.[1][2]

Roshar is quite a large world by cosmere standards, though smaller than Earth,[3] and one that varies greatly, especially east to west.

There are three Shards that have influence on Roshar. These are Honor, Cultivation and Odium.

Like the rest of Brandon Sanderson's adult fiction books, the novels of The Stormlight Archive take place in a single universe known as the cosmere.

SystemEdit

The Rosharan system is comprised of a series of gas giants which crowd its outer reaches. Still, nobody has been able to observe them directly, as their manifestations in Shadesmar is minor.[4]

There are three worlds in the habitable zone, all of which are inhabited to one extent or another.[5]

The showpiece of the system is the middle world of Roshar itself.[6]

EnvironmentEdit

Roshar exists at 0.7 cosmere standard in gravitation, 0.9 in size, and possesses a high-oxygen environment.[7] Visitors to Roshar should know that fire will respond unusually because of this environment.[8]

Said visitors should also be aware that lengths and times mentioned in essays and stories about the world usually use local measurements. A Rosharan year is longer than cosmere standard.[9]

Gravitation, the strong axial force, surface tension ... these things have come alive, as have more abstract notions such as transformation and transportation.[10][11]

Life on Roshar has been shaped over millennia by massive, Invested storms, which pose a danger that cannot be overstated.[12]

These storms predate the arrival of the Shards Honor, Cultivation, and Odium on Roshar - as do many of the spren. However, the presence of the storms molded and transformed the world's nature to the point that it is difficult to distinguish what is pre-Shattering in origin, and what is a newer development. Many of the spren that now exist on Roshar have arisen from the friction between Honor, Cultivation, and Odium.[13]

A Rosharan year is longer than cosmere standard, and a Rosharan foot is larger than cosmere standard.[14]

LandscapeEdit

Further information: Highstorm, Flora, and Fauna

The landscape of Roshar varies across its regions. Along the eastern coast, near the oceans where the highstorms originate, the land is beaten harshly by said storms, eroding away any soil, leaving rough rock formations. Almost all types of life have some type of protective shell or encasing into which they can retreat for protection.

The lands in Shinovar, farthest west on the main continent of Roshar, have soil and grass that does not retract.  This region is mostly protected from the highstorms by the high peaks of the Misted Mountains. Most plants that grow in Shinovar can not grow in other parts of Roshar.

Roshar's population includes several non-human races, such as the Aimians and the Parshendi, as well as many races of sentient spren.[15]

Roshar has three moons - Salas, Nomon and Mishim, each of which waxes and wanes separately from the other. Roshar's seasons generally last only a few weeks and the world's surface gravity, at 0.7g, is significantly weaker than that of Earth. This is, in part, responsible for the exceptional growth of native creatures such as the Greatshell.

EcologyEdit

Roshar is home to a diverse and unique ecology containing dramatic megafauna and fascinating symbiotic relationships between creatures (both humanoid and not) and Splinters of Investiture.[16]

The most dramatic of these is the relationship between humans and self-aware spren, which is the basis for the magic of Surgebinding. This magic has strong roots in natural physics, with the spren being personifications of the forces themselves (called Surges locally).[17]

The pattern of bonding spren to human is merely an expansion of what already exists in the nature of the world of Roshar. For example, gargantuan crustaceans grow to incredible size without collapsing under their own weight, not just through the nature of the world, but through simbiosis with spren. Certain animals obtain flight through similar means, and there is even a race of equines that - through the spren bond - have adapted to life on the world and obtained a high enough level of self-awareness to nearly be named a sapient species.[18]

Nations/RegionsEdit

During the Heraldic Epochs, Roshar was ruled by a coalition of ten nations known as the Silver Kingdoms. In the Era of Solitude, following the departure of the Heralds and the demise of the Orders of Knights Radiant, those kingdoms crumbled into smaller ones:


RosharPeoples

Fan art by BotanicaXu[1]

Magic SystemsEdit

Further information: Magic Systems

Given Brandon's answers to questions asked on tor.com, he based some of the Roshar magic systems on the Jewish mysticism of Kabbalah.[19] Magic systems on Roshar include fabrial science, Surgebinding, Voidbinding, and the Old Magic.[20] Both Honor and Odium each grant magic based on specific pathways in the spiritweb of persons as defined by the ideals of their Order. The Old Magic requires rewriting of the person's spiritweb to allow for the required changes.

NotesEdit

Much of Roshar is inspired by tidal pools and coral reefs.[21]

The cosmere runs along a 10,000 year gap and Roshar falls right into the middle of the timeline.[22]

Q&A with BrandonEdit

Q. You have said before that all the planets had their names before the arrival of the Shards. Is Roshar the planet's name before the Shards arrived?

A. Yes.[23]

ReferencesEdit