Jasnah's notebook

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Jasnah's notebook
Type Research notes
Author Jasnah Kholin
Language Alethi (Women's script)
World Roshar
Universe Cosmere
Featured In The Stormlight Archive
This article contains intellectual property reproduced with permission
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Jasnah's notebooks contain notes on various subjects made by Jasnah Kholin over the course of several years.[1] Excerpts from it can be found in the epigraphs of The Way of Kings, in front of chapters 29 to 50.[2]


Since the murder of King Gavilar, Jasnah has dedicated much of her time to finding out as much information as she can about the Voidbringers and the city of Urithiru, seeking to understand the events of the night of her father's assassination.[3]

After the Ghostblood's failed attempt to assassinate Jasnah, two of the three waterproof trunks containing her notebooks were lost at the sea. Only one washed ashore and was recovered by Shallan.[4] Fortunately, Jasnah made copies of her important papers with confidants via spanreeds. These copies allowed her to restore the contents of the lost notebooks more or less completely.[5]


Jasnah keeps several notebooks, in which she jots down quotes, her own notes and observations. Once a notebook is filled, she reevaluates its contents and then copies the relevant passages into other, more specific notebooks. While in Kharbranth, she has three such specific notebooks: one dedicated to information about Urithiru; one concerning the Voidbringers; and one regarding Natanatan and the Shattered Plains.[1] Additionally, Jasnah keeps a separate notebook with her observations on the politics and notable figures of Alethkar, although by the time Shallan reaches the Plains, the information is severely out of date, and a lot is outright incorrect.[6][7]



"The ones of ash and fire, who killed like a swarm, relentless before the Heralds …" Noted in Masly, page 337. Corroborated by Coldwin and Hasavah.

"They take away the light, wherever they lurk. Skin that is burned." Cormshen, page 104.

Innia, in her recordings of children's folktales, speaks of the Voidbringers as being "Like a highstorm, regular in their coming, yet always unexpected." The word Desolation is used twice in reference to their appearances. See pages 57, 59, and 64 of Tales by Hearthlight.

"They changed, even as we fought them. Like shadows they were, that can transform as the flame dances. Never underestimate them because of what you first see." Purports to be a scrap collected from Talatin, a Radiant of the Order of Stonewards. The source—Guvlow’s Incarnate—is generally held as reliable, though this is from a copied fragment of The Poem of the Seventh Morning, which has been lost.


"They were suddenly dangerous. Like a calm day that became a tempest." This fragment is the origin of a Thaylen proverb that was eventually reworked into a more common derivation. I believe it may reference the Voidbringers. See Ixsix's Emperor, fourth chapter.


"Born from the darkness, they bear its taint still, marked upon their bodies much as the fire marks their souls." I consider Gashash-son-Navammis a trustworthy source, though I'm not certain about this translation. Find the original quote in the fourteenth book of Seld and retranslate it myself, perhaps?


"Death upon the lips. Sound upon the air. Char upon the skin." From "The Last Desolation" by Ambrian, line 335.


"They lived out in the wilds, always awaiting the Desolation—or sometimes, a foolish child who took no heed of the night's darkness." A child’s tale, yes, but this quote from Shadows Remembered seems to hint at the truth I seek. See page 82, the fourth tale.


"Yelig-nar, called Blightwind, was one that could speak like a man, though often his voice was accompanied by the wails of those he consumed." The Unmade were obviously fabrications of folklore. Curiously, most were not considered individuals, but instead personifications of kinds of destruction. This quote is from Traxil, line 33, considered a primary source, though I doubt its authenticity.


"Flame and char. Skin so terrible. Eyes like pits of blackness." A quote from the Iviad probably needs no reference notation, but this comes from line 482, should I need to locate it quickly.



"They lived high atop a place no man could reach, but all could visit. The tower city itself, crafted by the hands of no man." Though The Song of the Last Summer is a fanciful tale of romance from the third century after the Recreance, it is likely a valid reference in this case. See page 27 of Varala's translation, and note the undertext.


"I walked from Abamabar to Urithiru." This quote from the Eighth Parable of The Way of Kings seems to contradict Varala and Sinbian, who both claim the city was inaccessible by foot. Perhaps there was a way constructed, or perhaps Nohadon was being metaphorical.


"Though many wished Urithiru to be built in Alethela, it was obvious that it could not be. And so it was that we asked for it to be placed westward, in the place nearest to Honor." Perhaps the oldest surviving original source mentioning the city, requoted in The Vavibrar, line 1804. What I wouldn't give for a way to translate the Dawnchant.


"Within a heartbeat, Alezarv was there, crossing a distance that would have taken more than four months to travel by foot." Another folktale, this one recorded in Among the Darkeyed, by Calinam. Page 102. Stories of instantaneous travel and the Oathgates pervade these tales.


"Taking the Dawnshard, known to bind any creature voidish or mortal, he crawled up the steps crafted for Heralds, ten strides tall apiece, toward the grand temple above." From The Poem of Ista. I have found no modern explanation of what these "Dawnshards" are. They seem ignored by scholars, though talk of them was obviously prevalent among those recording the early mythologies.


"Though I was due for dinner in Veden City that night, I insisted upon visiting Kholinar to speak with Tivbet. The tariffs through Urithiru were growing quite unreasonable. By then, the so-called Radiants had already begun to show their true nature." Following the firing of the original Palanaeum, only one page of Terxim's autobiography remained, and this is the only line of any use to me.


"Radiant / of birthplace / the announcer comes / to come announce / the birthplace of Radiants." Though I am not overly fond of the ketek poetic form as a means of conveying information, this one by Allahn is often quoted in reference to Urithiru. I believe some mistook the home of the Radiants for their birthplace.


Urithiru was the connection to all nations, and, at times, our only path to the outside world, with its stones unhallowed.

— A quote from the works of Ali-daughter-Hasweth [21]


  1. a b c The Way of Kings chapter 42#
  2. The Way of Kings Epigraphs
  3. Words of Radiance prologue#
  4. Words of Radiance chapter 11#
  5. Oathbringer chapter 47#
  6. Words of Radiance chapter 38#
  7. Words of Radiance chapter 40#
  8. The Way of Kings chapter 30 epigraph#
  9. The Way of Kings chapter 38 epigraph#
  10. The Way of Kings chapter 40 epigraph#
  11. The Way of Kings chapter 43 epigraph#
  12. The Way of Kings chapter 45 epigraph#
  13. The Way of Kings chapter 50 epigraph#
  14. The Way of Kings chapter 32 epigraph#
  15. The Way of Kings chapter 34 epigraph#
  16. The Way of Kings chapter 35 epigraph#
  17. The Way of Kings chapter 39 epigraph#
  18. The Way of Kings chapter 36 epigraph#
  19. The Way of Kings chapter 46 epigraph#
  20. The Way of Kings chapter 49 epigraph#
  21. Words of Radiance chapter 47#
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