Around the Cosmere: Theories and Coppermind


Hey all, I'm Windrunner, and welcome to your regular theory update for this month! Once, a long time ago, I had a featured theory column, but I kind of lost steam, and it died a slow death. Now, it’s being revitalized and updated with more info. I have three primary goals with this column. I want to keep you all updated on all the new quotes and info from Brandon we’ve gained, talk about expansions and areas that need work on the Coppermind, and tshine the spotlight on cool, accurate, or interesting new theories.

Major Calamity Tour Information:

We’ve had a lot of really interesting questions tasked during the Calamity tour that provide all sorts of insight into the cosmere, so I thought this would be a good opportunity to highlight some of the exciting new information. I’ve gotten all of this from one Calamity tour report or another in our Events subforum.

In the future, I’d like tp spend more time talking about cool new theories or ideas that have recently cropped up, but there’s a huge amount of stuff from the Calamity tour, so I thought focusing on this would be a simple way tget this column started. If you guys think I’ve made an error or misrepresented a quote, let me know. I want to be clear though, these questions contain some spoilers for Calamity, Secret History, and Bands of Mourning, so if you are worried about that, steer clear for the moment! :)

Forthcoming Book Information

Mistborn: Secret History sequels

  • Brandon is toying with a couple different ideas, but is not planning on putting out any of them immediately.
  • Demoux’s story may be a part of one of these.
  • Not all future ones will occur in the Cognitive Realm.
  • Future stories will always focus on behind the scenes things events, filling in the cracks between the books, and on characters that are more cosmere-aware.

Legion 3

  • Brandon has one more Legion novella planned
  • Brandon would be more interested in writing a full-length novel if Legion was actually being turned into a TV series

Apocalypse Guard

  • Will dig into the place that Calamity is from.

World Information

First of the Sun

  • Aviar like Kokerlii that hide minds from predators would also hide someone from an Awakener’s Life-sense.
  • Brandon has notes for other Aviar abilities, one of them is navigation

Sel

  • Gretgor, the sword of the first Wyrn is enshrined in Fjordell somewhere, perhaps at the palace. Brandon calls the sword a “he,” but this may be a simple misstatement.
  • If someone were to make an Essence Mark for themselves where the history of their other self “split-off” before they gained a Shardblade, they would not be able to summon their Shardblade while they were using that Essence Mark. It is also possible to create a stamp where a different version of you bonded a Shardblade. According to other previous signings, this would be tricky and probably need an external power source.

Threnody:

  • There are shades of animals
  • Cognitive shadows that travel to Threnody do not automatically become shades, but the two are very closely related “breeds”.
  • Threnody was named in memorial of someone or something.

Roshar:

  • Roshar’s three major magic systems are Surgebinding, Voidbinding, and fabrials, with the Old Magic being its own weird thing.
  • Roshar is special in some way to Shadesmar. (The audio here is confused)
  • It is theoretically possible for there to be a Nahel bond with a spren that grants two Surges that are not paired together among the Radiants.
  • Brandon would term any heavily Invested weapon a Shardblade, and there are many methods that can be used to create one, with varying effectiveness. The Bands are close, but are not Invested enough to be considered one.

Scadrial:

  • More god metal alloys will make appearances
  • There are hard limits to how fast a Steelrunner can move
  • In Brandon’s mind, burning pewter approximately doubles your strength, while flaring triples it. He has not canonized how much either of these things enhances reflexes or healing.
  • Scadrial mostly uses biodiesel for gasoline, but Brandon won’t rule out fossil fuel deposits being placed by Harmony.
  • There was a concept of hell in the theology of the Lord Ruler. It was the punishment for the souls of people that had failed or disobeyed the Lord Ruler. Even the skaa were aware of this aspect of theology.
  • Allomancers can burn metals from places other than Scadrial.
  • Hemalurgic decay in spikes containing Feruchemical attributes leads tless efficiency when they tap metalminds.
  • Kandra can have children with humans if they recreate the appropriate organs, although if the kandra is in a woman’s form, it would have to remain in that shape until the child is born.
  • The Lord Ruler had several children, but they mixed in with the population. Many people are related to them, and some may claim heirship, but in truth they may not be much more closely related thim than anyone else. The fandom is giving this fact undue attention.
  • The Bands of Mourning are not even close tbeing Invested as much as Nightblood.
  • When someone uses aluminum or chromium, the metal in an Allomancers stomach is “transferred” somehow. It has to do with energy, matter, and Investiture all being one, but a person who has had their metals removed by aluminum or chromium would not get metal poisoning.
  • A Connection medallion could be used to translate the Listener’s Rhythms, but it would not be perfect and something would be lost in translation.

Nalthis

  • Nightblood is one of the most heavily Invested things in the cosmere that is not a Shard.

Yolen

  • It is not unreacheable from Shadesmar due to a total lack of cognitive activity there.

Cosmere Information

  • Despite initial reports, Threnody and Sel are NOT in the same planetary system.
  • All cosmere planets are relatively close together in their dwarf galaxy, current estimate is within ~50 light years or so, although that may later change.
  • Seons and spren are more bound to their own worlds, but they can travel elsewhere.
  • Subastral is Hoid’s term for a specific region in the Cognitive Realm
  • The process by which people die, moving from the Physical Realm to the Cognitive and then to the Beyond is the same throughout the cosmere, although people stick around for different lengths of time depending on their Investiture.
  • It is widely assumed that Adonalsium is the creator of the cosmere.
  • When Wax remarks that souls and metal are the same thing, he is seeing that energy, matter, and Investiture are all the same thing.
  • Things that drain Investiture, such as larkins, Nightblood, and Leechers, all have something similar going on among them.

Shard Information

  • The Vessels of Shards can have children, although in a way their created humans are already their children.
  • Brandon specifies that we have not “seen” any Shards that have been Splintered reform as of Bands of Mourning.
  • Odium is more aware than Harmony of the various happenings in the cosmere because he is both older and because there are forces purposely attempting to limit Harmony’s knowledge.
  • There is some connection between Odium and Trell.
  • Someone who’s never been to Scadrial could be Connected to Ruin and Preservation because Connection is not binary, it can be stronger or weaker.
  • If Odium were to go to Scadrial, he would have difficulty seeing metal.
  • If Honor and Odium hadn’t been held by different personalities, the two Shards have the potential to be a natural pair and might have attracted one another.

Character Information

  • Brandon refuses to explain why ReLuur’s spikes are made of pewter, although he does agree that it doesn’t seem to “make sense”.
  • Ironeyes will probably make an appearance in The Lost Metal, but Brandon is not sure if he’ll be back in time from where is currently.
  • At some point, Wax drew upon the mists.
  • Vasher actually discovered Roshar while attempting to research an easier method to get Investiture than via Breath.
  • Demoux has gotten less idealistic since his initial appearance in Mistborn.
  • Nightblood leaks Investiture, but his sheath helps prevent that.

Coppermind

I’d also like to use these theory posts to shine a spotlight on the Coppermind. Every month I’m going to point out a well-done article, and then challenge you guys to work on a specific area of the Coppermind for the next month. If we’ve also put up any really awesome new fan art on the wiki, I might point that out here too in the future.

Featured Article: Cosmere

Our admin Chaos recently retooled the Cosmere article from scratch, really bringing it up to date with a lot of the cosmere’s foundational happenings. If you have any questions on how the basics of how the cosmere works and the background events, definitely give it a look. It is also incredibly well-cited, so there is plenty of digging you can do into various sources if you want.

Featured Fix-Me-Up:

This month, I’d like to challenge you all to work on Reckoners articles. With Calamity just out, many articles can now be truly completed, as the main sequence has come to a close. There of course can be additional information from the Apocalypse Guard in a few years, but we have a chance to get the Reckoners stuff all in order before that happens. I’ll be the first to admit that Reckoners isn’t my forte, so I can’t help very much and oftentimes it’s just Weiry working on them by himself. Even if you only have an interesting fact or two, every little bit helps. Any member of the wiki staff (Me, JoeSt, WeiryWriter, Chaos, and KalynaAnne) can answer questions you have about wikicode, and if you have any other questions, there is also a tumblr page you can use to contact us.

Random Little Known Fact:

I also thought it would be fun to close these theory articles with a little known fact of the month, something interesting that I think a lot of people might not know. Here’s this month’s, from a signed copy of The Way of Kings!

ALAXEL

Question is unknown, but likely a request for previously unknown information tbe added ta personalized copy of TWOK

BRANDON SANDERSON

Alaxel got a personalized copy of WoK, and written in it was "Odium and Hoid were once friends."

http://www.theoryland.com/intvmain.php?i=1105

This was news to me, and definitely shines a new light on Hoid and Odium’s enmity. Next time, I’m going thave a new Cosmere 101 guide prepared, updated with all the new information we’ve gained in the past couple years. Have a good month, and happy theorizing!



User Feedback


Yay for updated Cosmere 101!
 

It is theoretically possible for there to be a Nahel bond with a spren that grants two Surges that are not paired together among the Radiants.

That is totally new to me. Can I ask for the source?
 
Because it seems a little contradicting to that WoB:

Khyrindor
Do the Honourblades reflect the natural pairing of Surges, or did Honor decide which Surge pair to put in each Blade?
Brandon Sanderson (Paraphrased)
The pairs are natural to Roshar in the same way as the metals on Scadrial.
source

I know lesser spren may also grant different powers through Nahel Bond, but those wouldn't be any of the original Ten Surges, so...

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This article is so good. Even had info that I didn't know because I haven't been keeping too close of tabs on the stuff in the Bands tour.

(Which is scary, because I wrote the cosmere article.)

Guess I better update that ASAP...

Great job Windy and Zach!

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Can you give me the specific link to Yolen? I've taken a strong interest in it, and I want to know if he means either:

 

- "It is unreachable from Shadesmar, but not for that reason." or else;

- "It is may or may not be unreachable from Shadesmar, but if it were it would not be due to that reason." or even;

- "It is not unreachable from Shadesmar. Talking about cognitive activity in relation to Shadesmar would be redundant."

 

Is there another question which the questioner is aware of and I'm not?

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I dont like to disagree with Brandon, but the 2x and 3x pewter strength thing seems a little off to me.  I always thought that durability was the most important aspect of pewter, the ability for Thugs to fight through wounds that would have killed normal men.

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I dont like to disagree with Brandon, but the 2x and 3x pewter strength thing seems a little off to me.  I always thought that durability was the most important aspect of pewter, the ability for Thugs to fight through wounds that would have killed normal men.

Yeah, x2 doesn't really even start to describe what pewter burners were capable of. Vin was regularly cracking koloss skulls with bare hands, not to mention swinging huge koloss sword around.

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Yeah, x2 doesn't really even start to describe what pewter burners were capable of. Vin was regularly cracking koloss skulls with bare hands, not to mention swinging huge koloss sword around.

Agreed

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(Okay, I know this is a really long post, but I've got several references in here, and that takes up a lot of space, so just bear with me.)

 

Yeah, x2 doesn't really even start to describe what pewter burners were capable of. Vin was regularly cracking koloss skulls with bare hands, not to mention swinging huge koloss sword around.

 

I always saw pewter as a strength-enhancer with the side benefit of ignoring wounds. I also want to point out that using Vin as a reference point for an Allomancy generalization is a bad idea. Vin is strangely powerful. In book one, after their Steelpush shoving match, Kelsier says:

"The kid has to weigh less than half what I do, but she gave me a decent pummeling anyway.”

Sanderson, Brandon (2011-02-01). Mistborn Trilogy (Kindle Locations 2966-2967). Tom Doherty Associates. Kindle Edition.

 

In book 2 Elend is talking to Ham after Ham's sparring match with Vin:

“I swear, Elend— sometimes sparring with that girl is like trying to fight with a gust of wind. She’s never where I think she’ll be.” “How did she do that, Ham?” Elend asked. “The jump, I mean. That leap seemed inhuman, even for an Allomancer.”

Sanderson, Brandon (2011-02-01). Mistborn Trilogy (Kindle Locations 11477-11479). Tom Doherty Associates. Kindle Edition.

 

Ham replies:

“Now, most Thugs— myself included— figure that making their bodies strong will only add to their power. After all, a muscular man burning pewter will be that much stronger than a regular man of the same Allomantic power. ... Vin's a thin little thing, but when she burns pewter, she grows several times stronger than any normal warrior. She packs all that strength into a small body, and doesn’t have to bother with the weight of massive muscles. She’s like… an insect. Far stronger than her mass or her body would indicate."

Sanderson, Brandon (2011-02-01). Mistborn Trilogy (Kindle Locations 11485-11489). Tom Doherty Associates. Kindle Edition.

 

That last one supports both of my comments. Ham (a Thug who runs a crew of Thugs) implies that the main aspect of pewter is its ability to increase your strength. At the same time, he mentions that Vin is incredibly powerful. In this case he has an explanation, but we see plenty of occasions where Vin being like an insect could not account for her strange strength.

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I think the 2x or 3x enhancement of strength from pewter seems  pretty accurate (when ignoring outliers like Vin of course). However, this says nothing about durability, endurance, or speed. Just pure strength. So while it may sound a little underpowered from what we've seen, it's probably about right.

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Thank you SO much for starting this up! Since having a kid, I've not remotely been able to follow new developments.

This post was invaluable. Keep it up!

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Thank you for taking the time to do this!

I don't have time to scour the 17th Shard as much as i like so THANK YOU!

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