Warning: Spoilers for The Wheel of Time season 2, episode 4
- “Daughter of the Night” reveals Moiraine’s connection to House Damodred, her family lineage that ruled Cairhein in the books.
- Moiraine left her family 20 years ago and refused to take the throne due to a power struggle and their uncle’s actions.
- The introduction of House Damodred sets up the possibility of the character Galad appearing in future episodes and establishes a connection to Rand’s backstory.
The Wheel Of Time just introduced House Damodred, a family line with important ties to both its world and its future. Following a line that teased her connection to House Damodred in season 1, the Amazon series finally dove deep into Moiraine’s backstory. The Wheel of Time season 2, episode 4, titled “Daughter of the Night,” saw Moiraine experience a tense family reunion with her sister, Anvaere Damodred.
Slowly but surely, The Wheel of Time has filled in the gaps regarding Moiraine’s past before the timeframe of the series. However, most of what it’s revealed about her history pertains to her relationships with Lan and Siuan Sanche, people she knew as an Aes Sedai. For the most part, who she was before becoming an Aes Sedai hasn’t been relevant to the story. The introduction of Anvaere, though, has brought Moiraine’s family history and childhood into focus in an unexpected way. As “Daughter of the Night” reveals, Moiraine is part of House Damodred.
House Damodred & Moiraine’s Backstory In The Wheel Of Time Books Explained
In Robert Jordan’s books, Moiraine is actually royalty. More specifically, she’s a member of the family that ruled Cairhein, a major city-state in The Wheel of Time’s world and Rand’s current location in the show. She was the niece of the king of Cairhein, Laman Damodred. She was far down the list to inherit the throne, but the deaths of the king and his brothers during the war with the Aiel put her in a position to take power. But, she wanted no part of it. Her refusal to take the throne, combined with others not being deemed suitable, led to a different family – House Riatin – assuming power in Cairhein.
What Wheel Of Time Has Revealed About House Damodred
The power struggle in Cairhein and Moiraine’s role in it (or lack thereof) was alluded to in the TV version of the show during her conversation with Anvaere. Exactly how much the books’ version of House Damodred has in common with its TV counterpart is unclear, but it would seem that in both stories, Moiraine turned her back on her family. As a bitter Anvaere pointed out in the series, Moiraine left them 20 years ago, “never to return.” She claimed that their uncle, who may or may not be Laman, “ruined” them, which led to House Damodred falling on desperate times.
Apparently, they’ve been scraping by for quite some time. Even so, Anvaere has confidence that House Damodred will recover. She claims her son – who went unnamed – will marry “the queen.” Assuming she’s referring to the current queen of Cairhein, that should allow House Damodred to regain some semblance of the power they once held in the city. Considering that members of House Damodred have a strong presence in The Wheel of Time books, the family line maintaining relevance does make sense.
Why Moiraine Left House Damodred
While it’s easy to assume that Moiraine’s ambitions as an Aes Sedai on their own are what kept her apart from her family for so long, the real reason is unlikely to be that simple. The timeline Anvaere set for how long Moiraine has been away – 20 years – lines up curiously with the time she spent looking for the Dragon Reborn. Since it was already known that searching for the Dragon Reborn was her primary objective for years, it makes sense that this is why she didn’t go back home. She had prioritized finding him over all else.
Wheel Of Time Season 2’s House Damodred Continues The Setup For A Major Book Character
The Wheel of Time officially introducing House Damodred has important implications for what comes next. Though it hasn’t been crucial to the show’s plot yet, politics are key to the story in the books, especially when the allegiances and motives of people with authority holds such sway over major events like war. When dabbling in the political side of its world, The Wheel of Time dealt with a long list of characters, including Caraline and Barthanes, who were both members of House Damodred. Not only that, but one of the biggest names still missing from The Wheel of Time’s cast, Galad, is a Damodred.
Introduced in the first book, The Eye of the World, Galededrid Damodred is Moiraine’s nephew. Before the setting of the books, Moiraine’s brother and Galad’s father – Taringail Damodred – married Queen Morgase, the ruler of Andor. This in turn made Galad a member of both families. By joining the royal family of Andor, Galad became the step-brother to Queen Morgase’s children, Gawyn and Elayne Trakand. Known for his black-and-white moral code, Galad went on to develop an important role in the books by becoming a prominent figure among the Whitecloaks and appearing in various books in The Wheel of Time series.
The formal introduction of House Damodred brings the show one step closer to using Galad. The show already made his arrival imminent by debuting his sister, Elayne. It feels like it’s only a matter of time before he’s either namedropped by Elayne in Wheel of Time or shown in the flesh. And with Anvaere appearing in Cairhein, there’s good chance other House Damodred members (Galad included) will be around in that storyline as well. If not, Galad’s debut could be saved for when the show introduces the Andorian royal family. .
How House Damodred Is Connected To Rand
Interestingly, House Damodred is also loosely connected to the family background of the Dragon Reborn himself. Rand isn’t directly related to their bloodline, but they do have a link to his origin story in The Wheel of Time books. In the opening sequence of The Wheel of Time season 1, episode 7, a woman named Tigraine Mantear is shown fighting in the Aiel War against the soldiers of Cairhein. Later on, Tigraine is revealed to be the mother of Rand al’Thor. In the books, Tigraine was the former wife of the aforementioned Taringail Damodred.
Although Tigraine fought on the side of the Aiel, the book version of the character was actually an Andorian noblewoman. To strengthen ties between Andor and Cairhein, it was arranged for Tigraine to marry House Damodred’s Taringail. Later on, she abandoned House Damodred and met an Aiel chief named Janduin, the man who would become Rand’s father. This element of Rand’s backstory has yet to be explored, but now that House Damodred has been added to the lore of the show, it’s likely it’ll be explored in full at some point or another in The Wheel of Time’s run.
The Wheel of Time releases new episodes on Fridays on Amazon Prime Video.