“I am the one thing you can never kill. I a hope”a reference to Ati

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So, in the hope of elantris if I’m not mistaken they say the Aon for hope is Ati, which is the name of ruin, something that the Lord Ruler never got to kill , am I the first to point this coincidence out ? Please let me know if there is a discussion since I wanted to know Brandon’s take on it 


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I think you are the first one to point it out, but I do not know. I believe it is probably a coincidence, but it might be something more.


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Posted (edited)

I doubt it's in-world significant. Most of the known Yolish words or Vessel names don't have much of a connection to Aons that I can see. Aon Ati has no similarity to the symbols for Atium.


Aon Eshe means endowment, compared to Edgli. Aon Mai is honor, compared to Tanavast. No possible breakdown of Adonalsium is a known Aon as of now (ado, ona, siu, ium). 

My guess is that connection is incidental, because we know how Aon Ati came to be used in only one character, Matisse in Hope of Elantris. Matisse is named after a real world former student of Emily Sanderson, who gave them her Elantris book report project that she made in class as a wedding gift. "Ati" is the only possible Aon from her name. All of that is in Arcanum Unbounded in the author notes for Hope of Elantris, but you can read it here:


Brandon Sanderson


This short story actually has a very interesting backstory.

If we flash back to January 2006, we find me having been dating Pemberly (her real name is Emily, but she goes by Pemberly online) for about two months. Our relationship was still quite new, and we weren't exclusive yet. (Though I wanted to be. I was pretty sure I wanted to marry her by that point.)

Well, at one of our dates, Pemberly told me an amazing story. It seems that one of her eighth grade students—a girl named Matisse—had done a book report on Elantris. Now, Matisse didn't know that her teacher was dating me. She didn't even know that Pemberly knew me. It was just one of those bizarre coincidences that happens just to prove to us all that the world is a funny place.

Now, when I say book report, that doesn't get across the scope of what Matisse did. Being a clever, creative girl, she went the extra mile. Instead of a simple write-up on the book, she did a Dragonology-style book on Elantris. This thing is amazing; it has sketches and bios of the characters, strips of Elantrian cloth stapled in as examples, little pouches filled with materials from the books, all of that. A total multisensory experience dedicated to the novel, all handmade. Pemberly showed it to me, and it was honestly just about the coolest, must humbling thing I'd ever seen. Matisse had obviously loved the book very much.

That set me thinking of something I could do as a thank-you surprise to Matisse, who still didn't know that her teacher was dating one of her favorite authors. I'd had this idea itching in the back of my head.

The Hope of Elantris Annotations (Jan. 28, 2010)

 I really, really doubt Brandon named Ati and by extension Ruin after Matisse.

Edited by Duxredux
added another thought

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