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Seanchan is the name of the landmass located across the Aryth Ocean to the west of the Westlands, and across the Morenal Ocean to the east of Shara. It is also the name of the Empire that occupies most of the landmass and its offshore islands, and also of the people who inhabit it. This article is principally concerned with the geography of the Seanchan continent.
The Seanchan home continent almost girdles the world from pole to pole and is considerably larger than the continent consisting of the Westlands, Aiel Waste, Great Blight, and Shara. The nearest parts of Seanchan to the Westlands are located more than 5,000 miles across the Aryth Ocean, a journey of some months even by the fastest ships and contributing to the lack of communication between the two continents for most of recorded history.
Seanchan is split into two landmasses, divided by a long dividing channel. There are four large islands located off the coast of the continent, and three small ones within the dividing channel.
The northern landmassEdit
The northern landmass is the smaller of the two. The northernmost part of the landmass consists of the Lesser Blight, which is a corrupted landscape similar to the Great Blight north of the Westlands. Considering its latitude, it is possible that this corrupted landscape extends across the entire world, even below the waves. Although the Lesser Blight is not as hostile nor as dangerous as the Great Blight, it is still considered the most dangerous part of the Seanchan continent.
South of the Lesser Blight are the Mountains of Dhoom. These are considered to be an extension of the mountains of the same name in the Westlands, and it is possible that the mountains completely encircle the Blight and even continue beneath the waves, as they tumble into the sea in the same confused morass of islands and cliffs as in the Westlands.
The Seanchan Empire claims all parts of the continent south of the Mountains of Dhoom. The remainder of the northern landmass consists of three peninsulas which extend for several thousand miles southward from the mountains. These peninsulas are mountainous, with only a few major rivers being marked on maps. The largest cities on the northern landmass are Sohima, Imfaral, Asinbayar and, located at the southernmost tip of the landmass on the equator, Qirat.
The north was secured by the invading armies of Luthair Paendrag Mondwin early during the Conquest, who took Imfaral as their base of operations and first capital before they invaded the south. This suggests their invasion fleet landed on the northeastern coast of the northern landmass.
The dividing channelEdit
The two subcontinents are divided by a channel or sea. This body of water opens onto the Morenal Ocean at Qirat in the west and proceeds eastwards before turning north for several thousand miles, opening onto the Aryth Ocean at roughly the latitude of the Aile Dashar. A large offshoot of this channel forms a significant bay or gulf between the peninsulas on which Sohima and Imfaral are located. There are three islands in the channel where it swings northwards.
The southern landmassEdit
The southern landmass is by far the larger of the two. It is located mostly within the southern hemisphere, but a huge peninsula extends north and east for several thousand miles into the northern. The imperial capital of Seandar is located on this landmass, roughly due west of the island of Tremalking. Seandar is located at the meeting point of two substantial river networks.
The southern landmass proper is vast and is covered by mountains several times the length of the Spine of the World, lakes large enough to be called seas, rolling plains, deserts, and immense rivers longer and wider than the Erinin or Manetherendrelle. The other major cities of the Empire located on the southern landmass are Kirendad, Anangore, Shon Kifar, Rampore, Tzura, and Noren M'Shar. Several large islands lie off the coast, one of which is presumably Marendalar, site of the last major rebellion against the Crystal Throne. The island of Maram Kashor lies off the southeastern coast of the southern landmass.
According to the text of The World of Robert Jordan's The Wheel of Time, the Seanchan continent stretches for 4,000 leagues (16,000 miles) from north to south and for some 1,500 leagues (6,000 miles) at its widest point east to west. However, the former figure is not actually possible since the world of the Wheel is our world (since it exceeds the Earth's half-circumference of 12,000 miles). The accompanying map, although hardly of scientific quality, suggests more plausible figures of just over 10,000 miles from north to south and just over 5,000 miles from east to west at its widest point.