Patrick Rothfuss Reread

Rothfuss Reread: Timeline

Welcome to my no moon left unturned reread of Patrick Rothfuss’s Kingkiller Chronicles. This week we’re doing something a little different—we’re looking at Thistlepong’s timeline of all the events mentioned in The Wise Man’s Fear and The Name of the Wind. Unsurprisingly, this assumes you’ve read all of both books. This post is full of spoilers, please don’t venture beyond the cut unless you want them.

The good news is that the paperback of The Wise Man’s Fear came out this week, so if you’ve been waiting for that you can catch up now!

Useful links: The Sleeping Under the Wagon post, in which there are lots of theories. The re-read index. The map.

First, I want to thank Re’lar Thistlepong for compiling this excellent timeline, which I think will be very useful. We don’t have actual dates for very many things—Kvothe generally says “years ago” and in very rounded numbers. But having things in order and an idea of relative timescales really helps.
I invite everyone to read it and write additions and corrections in comments. If there are any additions and corrections that seem to be agreed on, I’ll edit the post to put them in, clearly marked as additions.
We’ll get back to a normal post on the next five chapters of WMF next week.
Dates with ~ are approximate.

Zero set at Kvothe’s entrance to the University

Color Key:

Kvothe’s Age
Skill Leveling

-10,000 shepherds begin whistling Bell Weather : :
~Tinker Tanner (the oldest song in the world, not really)

Old Knowers

“these old name-knowers moved smoothly through the world. they knew the fox and they knew the hare, and they knew the space between the two.”


“then came those who saw a thing and thought of changing it. they thought in terms of mastery. “they were shapers. proud dreamers.”

Felurian on the walls of Murella
Faen sewn from whole cloth by the Shapers
Each shaper wrought a star to fill the empty sky of Faen
Iax spoke to the Cthaeh
Iax pulls the Moon into Faen
(the land cracks and the sky changes)
The Mortal makes war on Faen
The Creation War (centuries long)
-5500 Chael shapes Saicere

          5000           x 31
(#Owners – Finol)

The Empire of Ergen (hundreds of cities

The Empire reduced to Seven cities and one city

Belen, Antus, Vaeret, Tinusa, Emlen, Murilla and Murella
Myr Tariniel, greatest of them all and the only one unscarred by the long centuries of war.

Lanre marries Lyra
L&L thwart a surprise attack on Belen
L&L raise armies
L&L make the cities the cities recognize the need for allegiance.
L&L press the Empire’s enemies back
Blac of Drossen Tor turns the tide of the war

Finol holds Saicere

(more people died in three days than are living today)
Lanre dies killing a great beast with scales of black iron
The enemy is set/shut beyond the doors of stone

Lyra resurrects Lanre
War continues, years pass
Lyra dies, Lanre disappears
Lanre speaks to the Cthaeh
Lanre orchestrates the betrayal

~ 5,000:- Fae language that Bast and Felurian speak

Lanre comes to Myr Tariniel
MT and six other cities ruined.
Selitos curses Haliax and his allies
The fragment depicted in NotW c.28

Most of the ruach choose not to become invloved
Selitos founds the Amyr
Aleph empowers Tehlu & Pals

The Adem

Aethe seeks mastery over the bow
Aethe founds a school
Rethe comes
Aethe & Rethe duel
Rethe dictates nine and ninety tales

The Aethe path founded
The Aratan path founded
The Latantha path founded
-3000 The Loeclos Box

~3000 Yllish knots

Heldred unites the nomads in the hills around the Shalda Mountains
Heldim and Heldar
-2000 The Cealdim introduce standardized hard currency
(Kvothe’s inaccurate Saicere estimate)

~2000 Temic, Siaru

-1500 Sovoy’s blood goes back fifty generations
-1300 Oldest surviving mention of Loeclos family name
-1000 Height of Lockless power
Trapis’s Story (corroborated)
~1000 Tema, Aturan

The Book of the Path

-1000 The Aturan Empire & the Tehlin Church

-1000:  Human Amyr founded by the Tehlin church in the early days of the Aturan empire.

-900 variant spellings of Lockless in Caudicus’s book
-600 The Lockless change their name(s)

Lackless (Vint)
Laclith (South)
Kaepcaen (Modeg)

(Trapis’s story: disputed)
-400 The Aturan Empire absorbs Vint
-370 Gibea begins vivisection
-350 The Amyr move against the Duke of Gibea (19/23 volumes lost)
-300 Alpura Prolycia Amyr The Pontifex disbands the Amyr
*during Emperor Nalto’s reign
-300 to present Nine cataloguing systems in the Archives
-300 to -200 The Aturan Empire collapses
-200 novel travelogues all the rage in Modeg
-200 Tehlins still burned anyone with a knack (called demon signs)

-150:  Antressor (famous instrument maker) lived

-100:   Last publicly known case of someone guilty of malfeasance

-80 The Medica removes cataracts
-55 Oren Velciter born
*Abenthy born
-50 Four Master Archivists within five years of one another

3 factions:

-50 An alchemist ruins the lives of Aturan officials with plum bob

-40 Lerand Alveron born
* Trapis born

* Elodin born
*Abenthy enters the University (18)
-35 Larkin Ledgers burned

ending 15 years of Scriv Holy War
200,000 books effectively lost

*Abenthy knows as much as [email protected] (20)

-30:   Manet enrolled at university

-30 Master Archivist Tollem dies

new Master Archivist
new Archival System

-24 Maershon Lerand Alveron succeeds his father (16)

-14 Elodin enrolled at University
-18 Simmon Dalonir born

-18 Elodin gets his gil’the
* Denna Born
-16 Arliden steals Laurian away
-15 Kvothe born

-12:   Last student before K to be banned from archives
-10/11:  Caudicus became part of Maer’s court (a dozen years before Kv in Severen).

-12 Kvothe learns to sing (Age 3)
-9 Kvothe stops believing in magic (Age 6)
-7 Kvothe learns the Lute (Age 8)
-7 Kvothe learns an eclectic smattering of Commonwealth law
-6 Kvothe learns the inner workings of the Modegan royal court from Hetera 
(Age 9)
Arliden begins collection stories about Lanre…
-5 Elodin is Chancellor
-4 Abenthy joins Greyfallow’s Men (Age 11)

I learned how to work the sextant, the compass, the slipstick, the abacus. More important, I learned to do without. Within a span I could identify any chemical in his cart. In two months I could distill liquor until it was too strong to drink, bandage a wound, set a bone, and diagnose hundreds of sicknesses from symptoms. I knew the process for making four different aphrodisiacs, three concoctions for contraception, nine for impotence, and two philtres referred to simply as “maiden’s helper.”

Mental agility exerices, alar, heart of stone, seek the stone, sympathy (90 bindngs)

-4 The Chandrian/University conversation
-4 Kvothe uses sympathy to “call the wind”

(a month before his 12th birthday)

-3/4 Abenthy stays in Hallowfell

Arliden performs 11 lines of /(Lanre)/
(a couple span before Kvothe turns 12)

-3 Kvothe learns: (Age 12)

japing and tumbling from Trip
dancing from Shandi
swordplay for Teren
acting from Arliden
etiquette from Laurian

-3 Greyfallow’s Men massacred

TIME is essentially broken here. The time following Hallowfell, through the massacre, and toward Tarbean is inadequately described, clumsy, and difficult to account for. Kvothe should be well into his thirteenth year by the time he reaches Tarbean, but he says, “That was the first night of nearly three years I spent in Tarbean.” He means roughly twenty one months. In any case he’s still 12.

-3 (under duress) Tarbean

Begging, slitting purses, picking pockets, picking locks, living barefoot, self sufficiency and distrust, being victim to and witnessing assault

– 3 years: Ambrose Jakis achieves the rank of Re’lar (Zolt)

Tarbean Year One:

Pike, Trapis, Hillside (Encanis/Gerrek saves him during Midwinter Pageantry.)

Tarbean Year Two:

Trapis’s Story, attacking Pike

Tarbean Year Three:

Skarpi’s stories (just past 15)

-5 days Kvothe sells Rhetoric and Logic

Shuden, 35 Caitelyn

meets Denna
leaves Tarbean

-4 days
-3 days Kvothe and Denna talk on the greystone
-2 days Kvothe plays Josn’s Lute
-1 day Kvothe arrives in Imre, parts with Denna
0 Kvothe admitted to University

Cendling, 43 Caitelyn

SOMETHING is amiss there, too. Kvothe says, “But if it was the thirty-fifth then I only had five days to get to the University. I knew from Ben that admissions only lasted until Cendling.” Reta and Roent’s caravan travels five days, but eight dates pass. Eight dates are consistent with the weekdays from Shuden to Cendling.

+1-2 years WMF (16-17)
+8 years Bast (23)

The Event

People in Newarre did not lock their doors before this.
+9 Waystone Inn (24)

Spring — Levy

Summer — Levy

The roads get particularly bad.

2 span before Scrael — Last caravan passes through
+10 Chronicler arrives (25)
Day 1

Shamble Man kills Shep, killed by Aaron

Day 2

Carter and Aaron leave for Treya with the Orrisons
Kvothe robbed by King’s Men

Day 3

Carter and Aaron to return
Chronicler has missed his appointment with Skarpi

-500 to -1000: The Universty has been around for centuries, while Caluptena was burned by Tehlin Atur.

*Taborlin the Great


“I heard from a boy in Temper Glen that if your arm’s cut off they can sew it back on at the University. Can they really? Some stories say Taborlin the Great went there to learn the names of all things. There’s a library with a thousand books. Are there really that many?”

The name creep issue aside, only a few rare stories survive very long in the Mortal. Taborlin’s widespread contemporary presence coupled with the above quote place him, generously, within five hundred years; if he existed at all.

Within a thousand years: his crowning work is about a Tehlin Amyr.

(Jezdynamite’s additions added. And more dates from comments added 13/3/12 ~91)

Jo Walton is a science fiction and fantasy writer. She’s published two poetry collections and nine novels, most recently Among Others, and if you liked this post you will like it. She reads a lot, and blogs about it here regularly. She comes from Wales but lives in Montreal where the food and books are more varied.


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