|Featured In||The Stormlight Archive|
”The only things Kharbranth has to sell are fish, bells, and information. The first two are hardly unique to us. But the third … well, the Palanaeum has the finest collection of tomes and scrolls on Roshar.
The Palanaeum is the largest known library on Roshar, located in Kharbranth and holding over seven hundred thousand texts on various subjects. It is made up of two rooms, an antechamber known as The Veil and a storehouse known as The Palanaeum proper. Varas is the assistant chief of collections and a distant cousin of Khabranth's king, Taravangian.
The Palanaeum is located within Kharbranthian Conclave, deep within mountain that surrounds the city, and access to it is carefully controlled. The pyramid-like caverns that form the rooms of the Palanaeum predate the city of Kharbranth, however, the smaller rooms that house the manuscripts and books were cut into the stone post settlement. How the caverns were created is unknown, however, some believe that it was the work of the dawnsingers.
Use and Admittance
Entrance to the Palanaeum proper requires a chit of of admittance to the sum of one thousand sapphire broams, which also allows for use of the Veil. Alcoves in the Veil can also be rented for ongoing use for two skymarks, however it is free to temporarily wait for someone while they are within the Palanaeum proper. Payment to access the Palanaeum is used to fund the hospitals of Kharbranth. Once admittance has been paid, the Palanaeum proper is available to access at anytime.
The Palanaeum also doubles as Kharbranth's royal treasury, and the city's store of emeralds are used to light the pathways within the Palanaeum proper. The Devotary of Insight is in charge of switching out the gemstones so they can be renewed with stormlight during the Highstorm.
The organisational system used within the Palanaeum filing system is standard across many of Roshar's libraries and archives. Patron's are free to locate and collect books and documentation themselves if they wish, however, ardents and servants are available to collect materials when requested. Additionally, ardents will shelve books that are no longer needed for use. Books can be removed from the Palanaeum, however, they are not to be taken into bathing chambers. Many of the books stored in the Palanaeum have been tampered with, with changes having been made during the Heirocracy.
At some point, there was a fire within the original Palanaeum.
Jasnah Kholin traveled to Kharbranth in the year 1773 to continue her research into the Voidbringers and Urithiru. She was granted access to the library by king Taravangian after assisting in the rescue of his granddaughter, who had been trapped within the Conclave by a cave-in. During her time in Kharbranth, Jasnah adopted Shallan Davar as her ward, having her use the Palanaeum to continue her training and study as a scholar.
During the same year, a team of researchers began working on the translation of the Dawnchant, using information gained from Dalinar Kholin's visions. Progress updates were periodically sent from the researchers to Kadash, an ardent of Dalinar Kholin whom was in contact with the Vorin research team and leader of Vorinism in Kharbranth. Research teams at the Holy Enclave in Jah Keved and the Jokasha Monastery on the Horneater Peaks, also worked on the translation of the Dawnchant using the key provided by Navani.
Following the coming of the Everstorm, the Palanaeum was inundated with requests from across Roshar, for information regarding the Voidbringers. This increase made it difficult for other information to be requested, with Navani Kholin having to call in personal favors to be able to gain access to information on the Nightwatcher boons and curses.
When the translation of the Eila Stele is revealed to the Urithiru coalition shortly before the Battle of Thaylen Field, Taravangian claimed that the Jah Keved and Kharbranthian research teams came to the translation independently.
The Veil is accessible from the Conclave and lies behind a pair of steel doors, intricately carved with a chart that is made up of circular and linear geometric pattern, as well as glyphs. The sides of the expansive room are smooth and incredibly tall, pocketed with small private balconies. The room is dark, with only small pockets of light from spheres that people use in the alcoves.
Elevators manned by multiple parshman are used to access the different levels within the Veil, with hallways carved into the stone surrounding the room allowing for access to the alcoves. Alcoves are turret shaped, with a large desk connected to the curved rim of the waist high balcony. A wooden railing runs along the top of the stone wall.
The Palanaeum proper
The Palanaeum proper can be accessed from inside the Veil, through a smaller chamber that is filled with soulcast crystal partitions. Past these crystals is a large cavern shaped like an inverted pyramid, with a walkway running down along the walls forming a giant square spiral. This walkway extends down fifty-seven levels, and at the bottom of the room is a large infused diamond that marks the point of the inverted pyramid and aligns with the nadir. A system of parshman worked lifts are available for use to access the various floors, though multiple lifts are needed to reach the lower floors.
Filing cabinets found on the top level of the Palanaeum proper contain an index of the material within the library, based on the date that they entered the Palanaeum. Books and documentation are stored within smaller rooms that have been carved into the rock of the Palanaeum proper. These rooms contain tall bookshelves, each with a symbol carved on the end reflecting the date the documentation was received. Troughs containing a moisture absorbing powder can also be found within these rooms to control humidity levels.
- The Palanaeum was named for Pailiah the Herald. It's name is based off the Greek word "Athenaeum".
- It was partly inspired from the ancient Library of Alexandria.
- An open-source project created by 17th Shard for archiving and transcribing Words of Brandon was named after Palanaeum.
- The Way of Kings chapter 7 #
- The Way of Kings chapter 29 #
- The Way of Kings chapter 45 #
- The Way of Kings chapter 8 #
- The Way of Kings chapter 36 #
- The Way of Kings chapter 33 #
- Words of Radiance chapter 6 #
- The Way of Kings chapter 46 epigraph #
- The Way of Kings chapter 5 #
- Oathbringer chapter 50 #
- Oathbringer chapter 53 #
- Oathbringer interlude I-2 #
- Oathbringer chapter 24 #
- Oathbringer chapter 111 #
- Steelheart signing Seattle
— Arcanum - 2013-10-14#
— Arcanum - 2015-12-08#
It has yet to be reviewed.