Callandor

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CAH-lahn-DOOR

General

Callandor is a sa'angreal in the form of a crystal sword with a curved blade. According to Lanfear, only two stronger were made that a man can use (TSR, Ch. 9). It is believed to have been constructed some time during the War of the Power and placed in the Stone of Tear, protected by the Power so that only the Dragon Reborn would be able to use it (TDR, Ch. 55). It is however, flawed and a man alone cannot safely use it (TPoD, Ch. 27). It lacks the safety measures of other sa'angreal that limit how much a person can draw (AMoL, Ch. 16) and also allows another to seize control of the person using it and draw the One Power through the holder (AMoL, Ch. 20). It is also a sa'angreal for the True Power (AMoL, Ch. 16)

A foretelling during the Age of Legends showed that it was linked to the Dragon Reborn (TDR, Ch. 26). Callandor was part of the Prophecies of the Dragon, that the fall of the Stone and the taking of Callandor would be one of the signs of the rebirth of the Dragon. It is neither the first or the last, and although Moiraine stated it was not the most significant (TDR, Ch. 6), the fact that the Stone did not fall in all the time since the Breaking and that it is an easily understood Prophecy, means it is one many people look to (TEotW, Ch. 13).

During the Last Battle, Rand draws saidin through Callandor as he walks into the Pit of Doom (AMoL, Ch. 25), leading the circle and taking the risk that someone could seize control (AMoL, Ch. 23). Moridin does not do so at first, and Rand and he fight, Rand using Callandor as a sword (AMoL, Ch. 30). As Rand is about to strike Moridin, Moridin stabs his own hand, and the link between them causes Rand to twitch, dropping Callandor, which Moridin picks up (AMoL, Ch. 46), using it as a sa'angreal for the True Power. Nynaeve and Moiraine then take control from him and link to Rand who is able to use the combination of the True Power, saidin and saidar to force the Dark One back into his prison and re-seal the bore (AMoL, Ch. 47).

Prophecy

The Dragon reborn drawing Callandor is one of the signs that he is reborn (TEotW, Ch. 13). It was also prophesied that he would replace it

Into the heart he thrusts his sword

into the heart, to hold their hearts

Who draws it out shall follow after

What hand can grasp that fearful blade

(TSR, Ch. 21)

  • "He shall hold a blade of light in his hands, and the three shall be one" (TGS, Ch. 48)

This may refer to Rand combining the True Power, saidin and saidar

  • A second unknown prophecy suggests that using it opens up the wielder to attack (ToM, Ch. 32).

The Stone of Tear

Callandor was held in the Stone of Tear for some three thousand years. While there, the lords of Tear collected many other items of the One Power; some believe this was because it might lessen the stigma of holding Callandor (TDR, Ch. 29). It was located deep within the Stone, amid polished redstone columns, so wide that two large men together could not put their arms round them, suspended hilt down in mid air, forever rotating, protected by a barrier woven of saidin and saidar and impossible to touch (TDR, Ch. 5; Ch. 27).

For the most part, Tairens, including the High Lords did not like to talk about Callandor or admit it existed at all, but it was part of their ceremonies, four times a year they would hold the Rite of Guarding, claiming to guard the world against the Dragon Reborn (TWoRJTWoT).

Rand's Taking of Callandor

After fighting Ba'alzamon over Falme and spending the winter in the shadow of the mountains, Rand begins to dream of Callandor, as though it is calling to him (TDR, Ch. 6). He decides to set off to Tear, alone, to bring the matter to a conclusion. Lan, Perrin, Moiraine and Loial follow him and a confluence occurs, with Mat and Thom (TDR, Ch. 49), and Egwene, Elayne and Nynaeve (TDR, Ch. 48) arriving in the city as well. Belal captures Elayne, Egwene and Nynaeve as a lure for Rand, hoping to force him to take Callandor to rescue them (TDR, Ch. 50; Ch. 51; Ch. 53). Rand does not take it, as he is not convinced he truly is the Dragon Reborn and worries he might be killed while trying to reach out (TDR, Ch. 55). After Moiraine kills Be'lal with Balefire, Rand takes it to protect himself from Ishamael, who he kills.

The Fight with Ba'alzamon

The One Power surged through him, a torrent greater than he could believe, from saidin in the sword. The crystal blade shone even brighter than Moiraine's fire had. It was impossible to look at it, impossible any longer to see that it was a sword, only that light blazed in his fist....To channel this much of the Power, he must dance on that sharpness as he had danced the forms of the sword”.

A blazing shaft like the one Moiraine had made shot out of the shadows among the columns, straight toward his chest. His wrist twisted the sword instinctively; it was instinct as much as anything else that made him loose flows from saidin into Callandor, a flood of power that made the sword blaze brighter than even that bar streaking at him....

The shaft of light struck the blade of Callandor – and parted on its edge, forking to stream past either side. He felt his coat singe from its near passage, smelled the wool beginning to burn. Behind him, the two prongs of frozen fire, of liquid light, struck redstone columns; where they struck, stone ceased to exist and the burning bars bored through to other columns, serving those instantaneously as well. The Heart of the Stone, rumbled as columns fell and shattered in clouds of dust, sprays of stone fragments. What fell into that light however, simply – was not any more. (Reference: The Dragon Reborn, Chapter 55).

Timeline

  • Callandor is in the Hall of the Servants in Paaran Disen during the early days of the Breaking, perhaps sixty to eighty years after the Bore was sealed (TDR, Ch. 26).
  • Rand forces his Callandor dreams on the camp he shares with the Shienarans (TDR, Ch. 6).
  • Rand sets off to Tear (TDR, Ch. 6).
  • Rand forces his Callandor dreams on Tear (TDR, Ch. 50).
  • Rand draws Callandor and kills Ba'alzamon by plunging it into his chest. During this fight it apparently protects him from balefire (TDR, Ch. 55)
  • Lanfear says she can't trust Rand with Callandor yet, but changes her mind when the Stone is attacked and encourages him to use it (TSR, Ch. 10).
  • Rand uses it when the Stone is attacked. He manages a weave which kills every Trolloc and Myrddraal in the Stone. Moiraine has to talk him out of trying to bring a dead girl back to life (TSR, Ch. 10).
  • Siuan calls a meeting of the Hall as soon as she hears Rand holds Callandor. Leane already knows of him by this time (TSR, Ch. 17).
  • Rand forces Callandor between the floorstones. He says this is according to prophecy and that he has protected it (TSR, Ch. 21).
  • Rand sends Narishma to fetch Callandor (TPoD, Ch. 15).
  • Narishma returns with Callandor. He claims Rand didn't tell him everything so he had to figure some of it out, which nearly killed him. Rand disputes this (TPoD, Ch. 21).
  • Rand uses Callandor against the Seanchan, forcing them back to Ebou Dar, but loses control lightnings flashing down in all directions, until Bashere makes him realise what is happening and he lets go of the source. He is forced to retreat. Whether this is the strangeness caused by using the Bowl of the Winds, or Callandor's flaw is unclear (TPoD, Ch. 24).
  • Rand leaves Callandor and the access keys outside Far Madding, hidden under an inverted weave, and retrieves them after leaving (WH, Ch. 35).
  • Elza leads a circle with Merise and Jahar, holding Callandor. She kills Osan'gar, believing him to be merely a rogue Asha'man (WH, Ch. 35).
  • Min has a vision of Callandor held in an onyx hand (ToM, Ch. 51).
  • Min is able to interpret the prophecies so that Rand knows how to defeat the Dark One (AMoL, Ch. 47).
  • Rand takes Callandor with him into the Pit of Doom (AMoL, Ch. 25)
  • Linked with Moridin, Moiraine and Nynaeve, Rand uses the True Power, saidin and saidar to reform the Dark One's prison (AMoL, Ch. 47).

Quotes

“Another says that the Stone will not fall till the Sword That Cannot Be Touched is wielded by the Dragon's hand.” “The fall of the Stone will be one of the major proofs that the Dragon has been reborn” (Thom, The Eye of the World, Chapter 13).

“Huge columns of polished redstone surrounded the open space where he stood, beneath a domed ceiling fifty paces or more above his head. He and another man as big could not have encircled one of these columns with their arms. The floor was paved with great slabs of pale grey stone, hard yet worn by countless generations of feet. And centered beneath the dome was the reason why all the feet had come to this chamber. A sword, hanging hilt down in the air, apparently without support, seemingly where anyone could reach out and take it. It revolved slowly, as if some breath of air caught it. Yet it was not really a sword. It seemed made of glass, or perhaps crystal, blade and hilt and crossguard, catching such light as there was and shattering it into a thousand glass glitters and flashes. ...A foot from the shining sword, his hand splayed out against empty air as if it had touched stone” (Perrin, The Dragon Reborn, Chapter 5).

“The Sword That is not a Sword, though precious few know what it is. But none can touch it save one. They saw to it, who put it here. The Dragon Reborn will hold Callandor one day and prove to the world he's the Dragon by doing it. The first proof anyway” (Silvie, The Dragon Reborn, Chapter 27).

“Cautiously, she reached out with the Power, probing at whatever held and shielded the sword. He probed touched – something – and stopped. She could sense which of the Five Powers had been used here. Air, fire and Spirit. She could trace the intricate weaves made by saidar, set with a strength that amazed her. There were gaps in the weave, spaces her probe should slide through. When she tried, it was like fighting the strongest part of the weave head on. It hit her then that she was trying to force a way through and she let her probe vanish. Half that wall had been woven using saidar, the other half, the part she could not sense or touch, had been made with saidin. That was not it, exactly – the wall was all one piece – but it was close enough” (Egwene The Dragon Reborn, Chapter 27).

“no more than a dozen women in the Tower know what Callandor is and perhaps as many outside. The High Lords of Tear know, but they never speak of it, except when a Lord of the Land is being raised. The Sword That Cannot Be Touched is a sa'angreal girl. Only two more powerful were ever made and thank the Light, neither of those was ever used. With Callandor in your hands, child, you could level a city at one blow” (Siuan The Dragon Reborn, Chapter 29).

“They hold one of the most powerful focuses of the Power the world has ever seen, inside their precious Stone, It is my belief that is why they have collected so many ter'angreal – and indeed anything to do with the Power – over the years, as if by doing so they can diminish the existence of the thing they cannot rid themselves of” (Siuan The Dragon Reborn, Chapter 29).

Rand entered the chamber slowly, walking along the great polished redstone columns he remembered from his dreams. Silence filled the shadows, yet something called to him. And something flashed ahead, a momentary light throwing back shadow, a beacon. He stepped out beneath a great dome, and saw what he sought. Callandor, hanging hilt down in mid air, waiting for no hand but that of the Dragon Reborn.” (The Dragon Reborn, Chapter 55).

“Three thousand years while I lay imprisoned it has waited here. For you. One of the most powerful sa'angreal we ever made” (Belal The Dragon Reborn, Chapter 55).

The Blade, apparently glass, would cut as well as the finest steel (The Shadow Rising, Chapter 2).

Elayne, for one, thought it was because they had been forced to guard Callandor so long whether they wanted or not. Even the Sword That Is Not a Sword might seem less than what it was when it was one among many” (The Shadow Rising, Chapter 6).

“There are only two more powerful that a man can use. One at least, I know still exists” (Lanfear, The Shadow Rising, Chapter 9).

“With this I can do anything” (Rand, The Shadow Rising, Chapter 10).

“The Stone had fallen and Callandor stood in Rand's hands and this idiot thought he was another false Dragon” (Mat. The Shadow Rising, Chapter 13).

“The Stone held Callandorbefore I came. The Stone should hold it again, until I return.” (Rand The Shadow Rising, Chapter 21).

Suddenly the transparent blade blazed in his hands. Whirling it hilt uppermost, he drove it down into the stone floor. Bluish lightening arced wildly toward the dome above” (The Shadow Rising, Chapter 21).

“There is a surprise awaiting anyone who tries to channel Callandor out of the Stone, Moiraine, Do not think of taking it to the Tower for safekeeping; I could not make the trap pick and choose. The Power is all it needs to spring and reset, ready to trap again” (The Shadow Rising, Chapter 21).

“Do you know why I left Callandor in Tear? To remind them of me. Every day they know it is there, driven into the Heart of the Stone, and they know I'll come back for it. That is what holds them to me” That was one reason he had left the Sword That Is Not a Sword behind. He did not even like to think of the other. (Rand, The Fires of Heaven, Chapter 2).

“With a sa'angreal like Callandor, you could annihilate an entire city with balefire” (Moiraine, The Fires of Heaven, Chapter 6).

“It is flawed, lacking the buffer that makes other sa'angreal safe to use. And apparently it magnifies the taint, inducing wildness of the mind. So long as a man is using it anyway. The only safe way to use it without the risk of killing yourself or trying to do the Light knows what insanity, is linked with two women and one of them guiding the flows” (Cadsuane, The Path of Daggers, Chapter 27).