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Shardic Numbers


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It seems like individual shards have associated numbers. I have not seen a full list complied, so I attempted here. Please respond with suggestions or corrections.

  1.  Dominion (Shu-Dereth idea of uniting all under one nation)
  2. Cultivation (Boon/Bane)
  3. Ambition ( Simple Rules, number of the "Greater Good")
  4. Ruin ( Number of Koloss spikes and Kandra blessings)
  5. Endowment (base Heightening level for a returned)
  6. Devotion (number of days in weeks and months in year)
  7. ?
  8. Autonomy (number of sand master ranks)
  9. Odium (number of unmade)
  10. Honor (number of surges and orders of knight radiant)
  11. ?
  12. ?
  13. Virtuosity (teased theme from Fibonacci sequence)
  14. ?
  15. ?
  16. Preservation (well, did you read Mistborn or not)

Hard to fit fit in Mercy, Whimsy, Valor, Intervention, and the last unnamed shard fit in, as we just don't have enough information.

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Alas, we tried and tried until this came out:




The Only Joe (paraphrased)

Do all shards have a number they're associated with?

Brandon Sanderson (paraphrased)

Some do, (most/some) don't.

Firefight Portland signing (Jan. 16, 2015)




Also, the whole rosharan system shares the 10 theme, with braize as the exception at 9:




Herald (paraphrased)

Is there more significance to the 10 other planets around the Rosharan star system and them being gaseous? We know that Roshar's moons have unnatural orbits; so there seems to be some astronomical manipulation in the system.

Brandon Sanderson (paraphrased)

Yes there is significance of 16 in cosmere and 10 in Rosharan system.

Herald (paraphrased)

The outer 10 gas giants in the Rosharan system suggest a tie to the number 10 that predates the arrival of the current Shards. Is the prominent numerology we see around the cosmere an inherent property of the planets, rather than the Shards who invest them?

Brandon Sanderson (paraphrased)


Herald (paraphrased)

Would Ashyn/Braize share the 10-centric numerology of Roshar?

Brandon Sanderson (paraphrased)

Yes 10-centric is for the entire Rosharan planetary system...wait Braize is 9-centric.

Arcanum Unbounded San Francisco signing (Nov. 30, 2016)


  Edited by Quantus
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The numbers seem to be a planetary/system thing, not a Shard thing. It's not Honor or Cultivation that have the number 10, it's the Rosharan System that they inhabit. Likewise, 16 is relevant for Scadrial, not specifically Preservation or Ruin. It's probably the interaction between a planet and the Invested Shard(s) that makes it associated with that number.

5 is important for Nalthis:


Isaac Stewart


So we thought that would be a good symbol for the world of Nalthis, you take one of its Investitures and make that into a symbol. So I draw a bunch of flowers at this point, and we say, "What looks cool? What is going to be symbolic?" So you can see there's five lobes sticking up, five lobes sticking down. There are references to the number five in this book that have different meanings. Like the Five Scholars, and there was five something else. Anyway. So you'll see that one is sticking up, and one is sticking down. And there's more symbolism in that, as well.


YouTube Livestream 3 (Jan. 25, 2020)

Similarly, Sel seems to have the number 3, but not as prominent (3 continents, 3 letters for most Aons, the chapter triad system for Elantris).

Also, the Aethers have the number 12 associated with them:


Brandon Sanderson


The Aether world is a 12 world, so we'll have a 12 also. The Aether world does not play into things nearly as much, but it'll depend on how many books I write using the Aethers in the future.

YouTube Spoiler Stream 1 (Dec. 17, 2020)

I've also noticed many Eights in White Sand, but that could be unrelated. The more intuitive number would be 2, with its two sides, but maybe there is none.

There's also a hint at a number for Secret Project #3, but for spoiler reasons I'll just link the Word of Brandon (you have been warned): https://wob.coppermind.net/events/493/#e15498

Anyway, I don't believe that every world has a number and I also don't believe that a number is "taken" once one planet/system has it. 

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