Bonwhin Meraighdin

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Author: Atarah al'Norahn

General

Bonwhin Meraighdin was an Aes Sedai of the Red Ajah. She was raised to the Amyrlin Seat in the year FY 939, and held the position until the year 992 FY. These dates may not be exact because of the confusion surrounding dates during the War of the Hundred Years (TWoRJTWoT).

Bonwhin is one of the three Amyrlins who have been publicly deposed. She lost the staff and stole for attempting to manipulate Artur Hawkwing. She was replaced by a Blue, Deane Aryman. Since Bonwhin, there has been no Amyrlin raised from the Red Ajah (TWoRJTWoT; TGH, Ch. 5).

Bonwhin was an imperious woman, even for an Amyrlin Seat (TWoRJTWoT).

Timeline

  • Bonwhin is raised to the Amyrlin Seat circa FY 939 (TWoRJTWoT).
  • When Artur Hawkwing brings Guaire Amalasan to the White Tower, Bonwhin has a message sent to Hawkwing saying that he has five days to rest his army and move them beyond the borders of Tar Valon (TWoRJtWoT).
  • In the year FY 968 or 969, either Tamika, Hawkwing's wife, refused a summons to Bonwhin, or Bonwhin refused to see Tamika (TWoRJTWoT).
  • In the year FY 992, Bonwhin is deposed and kept in the Tower as a scullery maid (TGH, Ch. 5; TWoRJTWoT).
  • Bonwhin dies in the year FY 996 (TWoRJTWoT).

Miscellaneous

  • There is a triptych of Bonwhin in Elaida's study. The first panel shows her, tall and proud, ordering Aes Sedai. The second panel shows her defiant on the walls of Tar Valon under siege. The third panel shows her kneeling before the Hall of the Tower as she is deposed (TFoH, Prologue). Later, it seems that Elaida takes it down for reasons unknown (TFoH, Ch. 46).
  • The Red Ajah resents the fact that there has not been an Amyrlin raised from the Red Ajah since Bonwhin (TFoH, Ch. 27).
  • Apparently, Bonwhin never forgave Hawkwing for entering the territory of Tar Valon with an army (TWoRJTWoT).
  • It is thought that the Aes Sedai governing provinces for Artur Hawkwing took their orders from Bonwhin more than from Hawkwing. It is thought that she might have been attempting to control his decisions (TWoRJTWoT).
  • Some sources claim that Artur Hawkwing began the siege of the White Tower because he learned that Bonwhin had been behind the deaths of his first wife and children (TWoRJTWoT).

Quotes

"Tetsuan, who betrayed Manetheren for jealousy of Ellisande's powers, and Bonwhin, who tried to use Artur Hawkwing for a puppet to control the world and so nearly destroyed Tar Valon." (Moiraine to Siuan; The Great Hunt, Chapter 5)

"Both of the Red, and both replaced by Amyrlins from the Blue. The reason there has not been an Amyrlin chosen from the Red since Bonwhin, and the reason the Red Ajah will take any pretext to pull down an Amyrlin from the Blue, all wrapped neatly together. I have no wish to be the third to lose the stole and the staff, Moiraine." (Siuan to Moiraine; The Great Hunt, Chapter 5).

She raised her eyes to the paintings. One consisted of three wooden panels depicting Bonwhin, the last Red to have been raised to the Amyrlin Seat, a thousand years before, and the reason no Red had worn the stole since. Until Elaida. Bonwhin, tall and proud, ordering Aes Sedai in their manipulations of Artur Hawkwing; Bonwhin, defiant, on the white walls of Tar Valon, under siege by Hawkwing's forces; and Bonwhin, kneeling and humbled, before the Hall of the Tower as they stripped her of stole and staff for nearly destroying the Tower. (Elaida; The Fires of Heaven, Prologue)

The evidence is conclusive, though, that Bonwhin never forgave Hawkwing for entering Tar Valon's territory with an army. An enmity even deeper might be explained by the possibility that Hawkwing did indeed come to the White Tower's rescue against Maculhene and Motheneos. Bonwhin was an imperious woman even for an Amyrlin, and it is unlikely she would either have forgotten the need for rescue or forgiven the one who provided it. (The World of Robert Jordan's "The Wheel of Time")