- "The Grave is no bar to my call. Let he who sounds me think not of glory, but of salvation."— Inscriptions on the Horn of Valere
Heroes in general
- Ascend to a Higher Plane of Existence: Sort of in the case of the heroes, allowing them to help within an Age where they already died.
- The Hero: It's there in the job description.
- Badass Army: When summoned by the Horn.
- Badass Normal: What got them the job as individuals and keeps them in it whenever they reincarnate, though Lews Therin Telamon is excluded from the "normal" aspect.
- Big Damn Heroes: They are known for this, though their aid in the nick of time has to be called upon via the Horn.
- Famed In-Story: So much so that many of the people who saw them when the Horn was blown at Falme didn't even know who it was they looked at.
- Horseback Heroism: They are known to ride into their battles.
- I Have Many Names: An inevitable consequence of being constantly reincarnated throughout the Ages.
- Our Ghosts are Different: Often described as ghosts.
- Precursor Heroes
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Artur Paendrag Tanreall / Artur Hawkwing
Artur Paendrag TanreallBetter known in legend as Artur Hawkwing, he is the king referred to in many legends who united all the lands west of the Spine of the World as a single Empire. After uniting the lands, becoming High King, his subsequent death sparked the War of the Hundred Years. His sign was a golden hawk in flight.
- Fantasy Counterpart Culture: A twofer. While many of his attributes harken to King Arthur, including his name, Hawkwing's empire and how it fell apart following his death also makes him a version of Alexander the Great (or Charlemagne).
- Heroes Prefer Swords: His Power-wrought sword, Justice, which is used in the Last Battle by Tam.
- Royals Who Actually Do Something
- Winds of Destiny, Change: Said to be such a strong ta'veren that people in his presence could see the Pattern shift around him.
Birgitte Silverbow / Maerion / Teadra / Jethari Moondancer / The flaming Lady Birgitte Trahelion, if you flaming please
- "I always say, if you must mount the gallows, give a jest to the crowd, a coin to the hangman, and make the drop with a smile on your lips"
- Archer Archetype: Her defining characteristic throughout the ages (along with her braid).
- Big Sister Mentor: To Elayne.
- Big Damn Heroes: As noted above, but special mention goes to her revival after the Hornsounding. Her first action was to save Elayne just as Mellar was about to cut her unborn children out of her, by shooting him several times, killing him.
- Breakout Character: In-Universe, and rather literally. She was torn from the Horn by Moghedien to try to keep her from interfering in her attempted Made a Slave of Nynaeve, and subsequently became a more prominent character than any other Hero of the Horn (unless one counts Lews Therin Telamon via The Chosen One).
- Disney Death: Defending Elayne from Mellar during Tarmon Gai'don. Especially nerve-wracking because no one's sure if being ripped from Tel'aran'rhiod as she was has resulted in her being severed from the Horn. Thankfully, she wasn't.
- Off With Her Head!: How Mellar kills her.
- Distaff Counterpart: Has a personality very similar to Mat's. Fond of swearing, drinking, eyeing up those they find attractive in public, and not being nobility. Also, over the course of the story, both of them lose that last one, and not of their own choice.
- Guys Smash, Girls Shoot: The "Shoot" to Gaidal Cain's "Smash".
- I Have Many Names: As do all the Heroes but more of Birgitte's previous lives/adventures are brought up than any of the others.
- During the Age of Legends she was known as Teadra and foiled a plot of Moghedien's.
- In 47 AB, under an unknown name, Birgitte and Gaidal Cain helped to found the White Tower.
- Under the name Jethari, Birgitte once traveled into the Tower of Ghenjei in hopes that the Finn would heal Gaidal after he was injured in the battle of Lahpoint Hills. They both died.
- Improbable Aiming Skills: She can shoot an arrow with such precision that it splits a previous one in two and goes through it.
- Lad-ette: Part of why she and Mat are good friends.
- Laser-Guided Amnesia: She loses her memories of her past lives progressively as she remains torn from the Horn. Eventually this includes Gaidal.
- Odd Friendship: With Mat, the Hornsounder. Mat isn't even close to friends with Elayne, but he sometimes goes drinking with Birgitte.
- Reincarnation Romance: Always ends up with the Hero known as Gaidal Cain.
- Restraining Bolt: Tries to be this to Elayne's recklesness with limited results.
- Screw the Rules, I'm Doing What's Right!: Decides to help Elayne and Nynaeve against the Forsaken in Tel'aran'rhiod despite ancient injunctions to the contrary.
- Sir Swears-a-Lot: "This was Birgitte Silverbow, hero of a hundred legends? The woman was foul-mouthed!"
- Tomboy and Girly Girl: Is the Tomboy to Elayne's Girly Girl.
- Ugly Guy, Hot Wife: Is only attracted to ugly men, the uglier the better and always ends up with Gaidal Cain. Granted, being torn from the Horn by Moghedien probably renders that impossible. As it turns out, this is still in play, though, as she returns to the Horn once she dies, with all of her memories rejuvenated.
- What the Hell, Hero?: She and Aviendha give Elayne and Nynaeve an epic chewing out for being Ungrateful Bastards to Mat after he risked his life to rescue them.
Gaidal CainGaidal Cain, being bound to the Wheel of Time, is periodically spun back into the pattern. His incarnations take various forms, all of which share common themes. Most notably, he fights with two swords, and stories of him also include Birgitte Silverbow, his fated lover.
- Ambiguously Brown: Has a "swarthy" build.
- Dual Wielding
- Guys Smash, Girls Shoot: The "Smash" to Birgitte's "Shoot".
- Heroes Prefer Swords
- Name of Cain: Though this isn't seen as a bad thing in this series.
- Reincarnation Romance: The fated lover of fellow Hero Birgitte Silverbow.
- Ugly Guy, Hot Wife: The Ugly Guy to Birgitte's Hot Wife.
Lews Therin Telamon / The Dragon / Kinslayer
Lews Therin Telamon/The DragonLews Therin Telamon was the incarnation of the Dragon during the War of Power. He was the leader of the forces of Light and was well-respected all over the world. He was as strong in the Power as it is possible to be and was the "First Among Servants." Though he was known for a long-running romantic liaison with Mierin Eronaile, the true love of his life, his eventual wife and the mother of his children, was Ilyena Moerelle Dalisar, called "Sunhair" for her red-and-gold tresses.Lews Therin was responsible for ending the last War of Power, which he did with a back-up plan. The original thought was to create two obscenely powerful Amplifier Artifacts: the Choedan Kal, sa'angreal so potent that a man and a woman channeling through them could together unmake all creation. With such tools at their disposal, the relatively modest goal of erecting a barrier around the Bore could be achieved, one strong enough to contain the Dark One until the Bore itself could be closed. Unfortunately, the Choedan Kal could not be safely used without special "access key" ter'angreal, and these were seized (undoubtedly unknowingly) by the Shadow. Even worse, the women of the Hall of Servants refused to consider any other plan. This led Lews Therin to fish out his back-up plan: travel straight to the Bore and plug it with a makeshift cork anchored by seven pieces of cuendillar, thus Sealing Evil Back In Its Can. He and the Hundred Companions, men to a man, resolved to go.Well, we know what happened next; and if Latra Posae Decume had not led the female Aes Sedai in their resistance, would saidar have been tainted as well? Rand's fight would be hopeless if so. In any case, after Lews Therin went insane, he killed all of his family and many friends, earning the epithet "Kinslayer." In the meanwhile, the seven seals themselves were passed to the next Amyrlin, which is why she's called "The Watcher of the Seals" today; it's something of a state secret, though, that they were lost during the Trolloc Wars and nobody's know where they've gotten to for about two thousand years.
- The Archmage: Wore the Ring of Tamyrlin, signifying his authority over all of the Light-affiliated Aes Sedai in the Age of Legends. He also was the strongest male in the Power at the time, and teaches Rand various advanced weaves.
- Ax-Crazy: Though it's not really his fault, given the taint. This is especially evident when sharing Rand's body.
- Badass In Charge: Was an extremely high ranking official, including as The Archmage and as a political officer in his own right, including as the High Seat of the Hall of Servants.
- Claustrophobia: Develops it from the time in the box from Galina Casban and associated Cold-Blooded Torture in Book 6.
- The Cloud Cuckoo Lander Was Right: A lot of the things he rants and raves about to Rand are entirely accurate.
- Death Seeker: As Rand's Split Personality, he often spoke of wanting to die, and also only agreed to help him to Tarmon Gai'don so that they could die there.
- The Dreaded: So much that he is feared thousands of years later as "Kinslayer" for his murder of his entire family and his friends. Even thousands of years later, Artur Hawkwing is still wary around his reincarnation.
- Hero with Bad Publicity: Posthumously, and not without reason.
- Driven to Madness: Due to the Dark One's counterstroke, he went completely insane instantly after sealing the Bore.
- Driven to Suicide: After killing his entire family he was healed of his madness by Ishamael, horrified by his actions he drew too much of the One Power and killed himself.
- Eccentric Mentor: Granted, that might be putting it very lightly, but he serves as something akin to this for Rand, helping him to learn the ways of the world of politics and how to use saidin.
- Fallen Hero: After the taint.
- Happily Married: To Ilyena.
- Has a Type: note the similarities between the names "Ilyena" and "Elayne." Both have the same hair color too.
- Heroic B.S.O.D.: Has one when he realizes what he did to his friends and family, causing his Driven to Suicide. Also has one in Book 12, when Rand draws on the True Power.
- Just the First Citizen: A variation, as he's not evil (at least intentionally), but he is still called the "First Among Servants".
- Last Girl Wins: Ilyena, who he married after realizing that Mierin Eronaile (later known as Lanfear) was just after his rank, even if she did also love him.
- The Lost Lenore: Ilyena Sunhair, his wife. It doesn't help that he, you know, killed her himself.
- Master Swordsman: Reinvented swordsmanship as an art with Be'lal.
- Pater Familicide: He is called "Kinslayer" because, after he snapped, he killed everyone he ever loved, everyone who ever loved him, everyone who shared even a drop of his blood. The prologue of the first novel begins right after this event, as he stumbles mad through a mansion of corpses wondering where his wife went. Ishamael curing him of his madness to make him realize what he had done was what caused his being Driven to Suicide by way of Superpower Meltdown.
- Really 700 Years Old: He lived approximately four hundred years.
- Red Baron: Accumulated quite a few titles of this sort, though some may be Meaningful Titles from the Age of Legends. Among them are Lord of the Morning, Prince of the Dawn, the Dragon, Kinslayer, the Promised One, Champion of the Light, and First Among Servants.
- Reincarnation: The only one of the Heroes of the Horn known who is not summoned by blowing the Horn. This makes sense, since he was already incarnated into the Third Age.
- Satanic Archetype: He's the foremost champion of the Light who falls from grace. As an added reference, he is also known as "Lord of the Morning", while Lucifer, the name of Satan, is associated with the "morning star", and "Lews Therin" sounds similar to Lucifer as well. Subverted, as Lucifer made his fall voluntarily, while Lews Therin was Driven to Madness.
- Smug Super: His arrogance gained him a lot of envy for his power, which didn't help when the War of Power began. It's partially the reason why many of his friends turned to Shadow.
- Split Personality: Becomes one to Rand, as his own personal expression of madness.
- Split-Personality Merge: In the climax of Book 12. Afterwards, Rand gains the memories and perspective of Lews Therin without the associated madness.
- Superpower Meltdown: Killed himself by overloading his body with saidin, causing it to explode and create Dragonmount at the spot.
- Defeat Equals Explosion: Granted, he mostly defeated himself, but it counts.
- Tragic Hero: The world's greatest hero, who with his companions sealed the Dark One... and who was driven by his counterstrike, killing all his family, wreaking havoc upon the world, and then committed suicide after Ishamael returned his senses.
- Walking Spoiler: Not so much his existence, but rather his existence as Rand's Split Personality as he is progressively Driven to Madness by saidin.
- Warrior Poet: Wrote several successful books before the taint.
- Wham Line: In the climax of Book 12. This line is notable because while Rand was so insane that he was willing to destroy the world, he was portrayed as completely lucid.Lews Therin: Why do we live again? [...] Why? Could it be... Maybe it’s so that we can have a second chance.
Shivan the Hunter and Calian the Chooser
Shivan the Hunter and Calian the ChooserShivan and Calian are brother and sister Heroes, both of whom are only born at the end of an Age. Calian and Shivan respectively are assumed to be a parallels for Kali and Shiva of Hindu Mythology.
AmaresuThe wielder of the Sword of the Sun, Amaresu is a female Hero. Heavily implied to be Amaterasu of Japanese Shinto fame.
Paedrig the Peacemaker
Paedrig the PeacemakerA golden-tongued peacemaker, this Hero is the Wheel of Time version of Saint Patrick.
- Guile Hero: A "golden-tongued peacemaker".
Mikel of the Pure Heart
Mikel of the Pure HeartPossibly the Wheel of Time version of Saint Michael, not much is known about this Hero besides his name.
Buad of Albhain
Buad of AlbhainThe Wheel of Time parallel to Boadicea.
OtarinNothing is known about this Hero except his name.
- Spell My Name with an "S": Rand knows him as Oscar or Otarin.
Rogosh Eagle-EyeA Hero with a notably very sharp eye despite his age, Rogosh Eagle-Eye served Artur Hawkwing's court in his most recent life.
Hend the Striker
Hend the StrikerA jovial hero who wields a hammer and spike. Possibly the Wheel of Time version of John Henry.