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TES - Ashravan.jpg
Spouse Kurshina
Titles Emperor of the Rose Empire
Groups Heritage Faction
Birthplace Ukurgi
Ethnicity Grand
World Sel
Universe Cosmere
Featured In The Emperor's Soul

Ashravan of the Eighty Suns is the forty-ninth Emperor of the Rose Empire on Sel and a member of the Heritage Faction.[1] At the time of his injury he is forty years old.[1]

Appearance and Personality[edit]

Ashravan has a "strong face." He also has golden hair, a firm chin, and a prominent nose.[2]

Despite being known to have a temper, he is a humble man and an idealist at heart.[3][4] He loves to write terrible poetry and enjoys a good debate. He is arrogant, but secretly wishes he could be something other than what he became.[5] He hates fish but does enjoy hearing himself give speeches.[6][7]


Early Life[edit]

When Ashravan was six, his brother died.[8] He idolized his brother, but kept his feelings secret due to a belief that his brother would have made a better emperor. His brother's fondness for green was part of the reason that it was Ashravan's favorite color.[3]

At some point Ashravan began to keep a private journal, perhaps to reflect on the choices he made. He left instructions to have it burned upon his death.[9]

Life as Emperor[edit]

I have decided, at long last, to agree to the demands of my faction. I will offer myself for the position of emperor, as Gaotona has so often encouraged.

—Excerpt from Ashravan's personal journal[9]

After the death of Emperor Yazad, Ashravan is chosen to lead the empire.[9]

According to Gaotona, Ashravan originally became emperor out of a desire to change parts of the empire such as the favoritism shown to the Grands.[3] Over time, however, his desire waned.[4] Ashravan was swept up in the bureaucracy of an empire that worked, if not perfectly, then well enough. He focused more on the beauty of it all instead of its problems, and gave the arbiters more and more control.[5]

The urgings of his mentor Gaotona were a significant factor in his becoming emperor, and Ashravan eventually grew to resent Gaotona because he felt inadequate.[6]

The Emperor's New Soul[edit]

One night, a group of assassins, agents of the Glory Faction, broke into the emperor's rooms and attacked him and his wife, Kurshina.[10] Kurshina was killed, and Ashravan sustained a severe injury to the head. Although a Resealer was able to heal the wound, the emperor was left brain-dead. The arbiters of the Heritage Faction kept the emperor's status a secret by saying he had sequestered himself during the mourning period for his wife. The arbiters then tasked the Forger Wan ShaiLu to create a powerful soulstamp known as an Essence Mark to rewrite the soul of the emperor before the one hundred days of mourning were over.[1]

Shai used a number of sources for the Soul Forgery, such as official histories, Ashravan's personal journal and interviews of his friends and family.[9] The arbiter Gaotona volunteered himself as a test subject for stamps of minor portions of Ashravan's soul.[3]

On the ninety-eighth day of the mourning period, Shai succeeded in creating a soulstamp that replicated Ashravan's original soul with which he would have to be re-stamped each day. She snuck into his rooms and stamped him, waking him and restoring his mind. Ashravan allowed Shai to escape his rooms. Later he spoke with Gaotona and figured out, in the course of the conversation, what had been wrong with him.[2] He then addressed the arbiters, laying to rest the rumors of his illness and promising to seek justice for his wife's murder. Buried in the stamp, however, were also certain triggers that Shai had added to help nudge Ashravan into becoming the emperor he had always dreamed of being, causing him in the next years to pore over his old journals and rediscover his old ideals.[11]


  • Ashravan seems to be named after the concept of Ashavan from the Zoroastrian faith. This is backed by Brandon actively being influenced by ancient Zoroastrian words for Rose Empire names.[12]


Preceded by
Emperor of the Rose Empire
Succeeded by
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