Tuesday, November 2, 2010

The Wheel of Time Chapter Art

Sometime in the early 1990s I discovered The Wheel of Time series by Robert Jordan. It is a fantasy series which rivals The Lord of the Rings in its sheer scope. It is replete with interesting characters [1] and is much deserving of the moniker 'epic'. One interesting idea that the author introduced was to include an icon at the beginning of each chapter that served as a clue to the contents of that chapter.

Robert Jordan unfortunately died in 2007 of cardiac amyloidosis [2], before finishing the series. Recognizing what this series means to his fans, Mr. Jordan feverishly wrote out copious notes so that the series could be finished by another author after his death. That lot fell to Brandon Sanderson, an adjunct faculty member of the English Department at BYU.

Before his death Robert Jordan had intended to finish the Wheel of Time series in one more installment, to be titled A Memory of Light. Upon taking the helm, Brandon Sanderson realized that it could not be done, thus the final novel has been broken into three. Brandon Sanderson's first contribution to The Wheel of Time series, entitled The Gathering Storm, came out in 2009.

This book got me so excited about the series again that I started contributing to a wiki dedicated to The Wheel of Time.[3] As part of my contributions, I created .svg files [4] of all of the chapter icons. Here they are:

The penultimate book, Towers of Midnight, went on sale today (but I have to wait until my birthday for my copy). I'm excited to see where the series goes next. And perhaps there will be one or two new chapter icons.


[1] This includes many strong female characters, which aren't as prominently featured in The Lord of the Rings.

[4] If you don't know what an .svg file is, see my post Raster Graphics and Vector Graphics.

Image attributions:

All images are © Tor Books and used with permission. Original .svg files are available here: http://wot.wikia.com/wiki/Category:SVG_Chapter_Art.


  1. That sounds like an interesting series! Good thing your birthday is coming up so soon... ;)

  2. Should I give you spoilers?...
    Dude, we had a storm today and it killed the power in the retail district. So I had to go out of town to get a copy.
    The prologue is 52 pages long!
    Nice svg. Will you be posting what each heading indicates will be in the chapter?
    Sanderson used the chapter icons in his new book "The Way of Kings" but he used just a few, one for each main character.

  3. No spoilers, please.

    A partial explanation of the icons' meanings is given here. The spider web indicates the Dark One's touch on the pattern (bubbles).

  4. Thank you for posting these. I'm planning on getting a few of them tattoo'd on me, and this saves a lot of time and effort scanning and printing each of them so they are clear for my artist.

    Thank you so much, and I really appreciate this addition to the wiki.