The son of a horse trader, Mat Cauthon was born and raised in the small town of Emond's Field in the Two Rivers. A mischievous and quick-witted child, he was brought up alongside Rand al'Thor and Perrin Aybara, with whom he remained best friends through adolescence. Shortly after Moiraine Damodred and her warder al'Lan Mandragoran arrived in Emond's Field he joined them, and his friends, as well as Egwene al'Vere, Nynaeve al'Meara and Thom Merrilin, in fleeing the town in which he was raised in order to fulfill a destiny to save the world.
Mat was originally created by Robert Jordan for his book series The Wheel Of Time, making his first appearance in the series' first book, The Eye of the World. He is closely based on the mythological character Odin. He made his first comic appearance in Robert Jordan's The Wheel of Time: Dragonmount #0, written by Jordan and Chuck Dixon, and illustrated by Chase Conley.
Major Story Arcs
The Eye of the World
Mat and his companions are driven from the Two Rivers by an attack by monstrous Trollocs sent to kill them and destroy their village. They are pursued in their flight and take refuge in the corrupted city Shadar Logoth. There, he steals a tainted dagger from a horde of cursed treasure, and it begins to poison him with the evil of Shadar Logoth, a fact that he hides from his companions due to the paranoia-inducing influence of the dagger. When the group flees Shadar Logoth he, Rand and Thom are separated from the rest of the group. They travel to Whitebridge and later Caemlyn, Rand and Mat making their way to the city as gleemen after the apparent death of Thom. In Caemlyn Mat continues to sicken due to the dagger's influence, which is eventually discovered by Moiraine.
Powers and Abilities
Mat is ta'veren, meaning that he twists the pattern around himself, generally unintentionally, manipulating probabilities and causing events to come out in his favour. Unlike Rand and Perrin, his twisting of the pattern results in universally good luck. An inveterate gambler, he almost never loses a game unless it is beneficial to him to do so. Opportunities and necessities often fall into his lap with minimal conscious involvement on his part. He also experiences a sensation he refers to as dice rolling in his head, which function as a form of limited prescience, warning him that upcoming events are or will be important. As a result of an encounter with the Eelfinn he possesses the memories of an unknown number of past military leaders, leaving him with a gift for military tactics and strategy. He also gained the ability to speak the Old Tongue, as well as much of the cultural knowledge of the men whose memories he now possesses. The Eelfinn also gave him a ter'angreal, referred to as the foxhead medallion, that prevents anyone from touching him with Saidar, the female half of the One Power. It is unclear if it has the same inhibitory effect on Saidin, the male half, but has been shown to be effective against gholam. Mat used the Horn of Valere at Falme, binding it to him and making him the only person (until his death) who will be able to use the Horn to summon the Heroes of the Horn. Mat is a skilled fighter, especially in the use of the quarterstaff and the ashendarai, a blade-tipped pole weapon. He also favours throwing knives, and is competent with the bow. He is generally flippant and does his best to shirk responsibility, though responsibility tends to find him; he possesses an easy charm that tends to sway others to his side, probably aided by his unnatural luck.
The Wheel of Time
Mat was originally created for the Wheel of Time series of books. He has thus far appeared in fourteen books in the series.
Mat appears in numerous game adaptations of the series, both online and offline.