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Order of Dustbringers

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Order of Dustbringers
Dustbringers glyph.svg
Herald Chanarach
Spren Ashspren
Surges Division & Abrasion
World Roshar
Universe Cosmere
Featured In The Stormlight Archive

Smoke curled from the occasional patches of growth or heaps of burning corpses. Even some sections of rock smoldered. The Dustbringers had done their work well.

Kalak's thoughts in the wake of Aharietiam[1]

The Order of Dustbringers is an order of Knights Radiant on Roshar.[2]

The Dustbringers are Surgebinders who control the Surges of Division and Abrasion; they are associated with the ruby polestone. They form Nahel bonds with ashspren.[3]

Ideals of the Dustbringers[edit]

There are five Ideals of the Knights Radiant, also known as the Immortal Words, and are a set of rules by which the Radiants live. The First Ideal is shared by all of the orders, and is used as a motto for the Knights Radiant as a whole. The four remaining Ideals are unique to each order.[4] Dustbringer oaths were themed toward responsibility. They were led to understand that the powers they used needed to be properly channeled, much as their own desires and wills needed proper form and shape. As a Dustbringer moved through the oaths, they were taught greater powers of destruction—and are one of the only orders where their abilities weren’t all available at the beginning, but instead were delivered slowly, as they made the proper oaths. Each oath led to a greater understanding of power, the nature of holding it, and the associated responsibility.[5]

The First Ideal[edit]

Life before death, strength before weakness, journey before destination.

—The First Ideal of the Knights Radiant[4]

The Second Ideal[edit]

The Second Ideal of the Dustbringers is focused on self mastery.


Dustbringers manipulate the Surges of Division and Abrasion.

Division gives the Surgebinder the ability to cause objects to burn, degrade, or turn to dust, likely with great control, as Malata engraves a table using this surge. Division also works on living flesh.[3] So far it is not known what other powers the Dustbringers had, although it is likely they had the ability to ignite objects.[1]

The Surge of Abrasion can be manipulated to alter the frictional force between two surfaces.

Slicking: This ability allows the Surgebinder to make their body frictionless. The Surgebinder can choose which parts of the body are affected and which parts are not; for example, the bottom of the feet can be infused so that the Surgebinder glides over any surface without losing momentum until the ability is suspended. Wind friction can also be affected. However, slicking doesn't reduce the force of direct collisions. People experienced in its use often move as though they were ice-skating on the ground. Slicking can also be used to escape any grasp, or grip the flattest walls. It can also be applied to objects, making it so that only the Surgebinder can grip the object without it slipping.[6] A Dustbringer displays this ability in one of Dalinar's highstorm visions:[7] "She raised her Shardblade and charged, stepping through the water with uncanny ease, as if it had no purchase on her."

It is yet unclear whether Abrasion can be manipulated to demonstrate a reverse slicking and create friction.


Dusbringers had squires. In Dalinar's Purelake highstorm vision, Dustbringer squires supported their Radiant fighting a Thunderclast. They "glowed with Stormlight, though far more faintly."[7]


And when they were spoken of by the common folk, the Releasers claimed to be misjudged because of the dreadful nature of their power; and when they dealt with others, always were they firm in their claim that other epithets, notably "Dustbringers," often heard in the common speech, were unacceptable substitutions, in particular for their similarity to the word "Voidbringers." They did also exercise anger in great prejudice regarding it, though to many who speak, there was little difference between these two assemblies.

Words of Radiance, chapter 17[2]

The Dustbringers often attract tinkerers who like to dig down into the shape and soul of a thing, break it, and see what makes it work. They tend to object to those who focus only on their destructive sides, as they argue that in order to create, one must understand the pieces of the thing they are trying to make. They don’t see themselves as being about destruction—though their powers are the most destructive of any order of Knights Radiant. They instead see their nature as being about control, precision, and understanding. In the Knights Radiant, they tend to act as the equivalent of artillery in a modern army. If you want a large swath of land destroyed or burned, you call in the Dustbringers. However, they were also often used as sappers, engineers, and strategists.

They attract anyone who likes to take things apart, who likes to know how things work. They also attract those who are a little foolhardy at times—brave soldiers who see themselves as containing and controlling terrible destruction so it won’t get out of hand and hurt innocents..[5]

Before the Day of Recreance, many Dustbringers preferred to be known as Releasers because of the similarity between "Dustbringers" and "Voidbringers,"[2][5] though that name never really became widespread.[8] This naming preference may have been influenced by their spren, as Spark apparently passed it on to Malata.[9] The Dustbringers were often misjudged by people because of the destructive nature of their powers,[2] and even some of their fellow Knights Radiant felt they were "on the edge" and did not get along with them.[10] The Skybreakers, who often made sure the Radiants didn't abuse their power,[11] were particularly concerned about the Dustbringers, despite the fact that the two orders had much in common.[10]

Notable Dustbringers[edit]



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