In the Age of Legends, both men and women served as Aes Sedai. However, when the male Aes Sedai led by the Dragon Lews Therin Telamon failed to cage the Dark One forever, the One Power was tainted, causing all male Aes Sedai to go mad, leading to the Breaking of the World where civilization collapsed and all lands were reformed. At the beginning of the Third Age, the new Aes Sedai reformed as an exclusively female organization.
Later in the Third Age, Aes Sedai were later besieged by Artur Hawkwing. In order to lift the siege of the White Tower, the Aes Sedai agreed to be beholden to the Three Oaths, physically binding them to certain rules and regulations with the One Power itself.
The Aes Sedai consist entirely of women in the present day, as the male half of the One Power, saidin was corrupted by the Dark One at the end of the Age of Legends. They are an extremely powerful organization who maintain an uneasy peace throughout the land.
Aes Sedai are divided into several groups, called Ajahs.
The term "Aes Sedai" means "servant of all".
- "I swear to speak no word that is not true."
- "To make no weapon with which one person may kill another."
- "And never to use the One Power as a weapon." (except in the extreme defense of their life, their Warder's life, or another Aes Sedai's life)
Although it is impossible for Aes Sedai to lie, they are known to manipulate the truth.
Women train for years in the White Tower before they can become Aes Sedai. They first serve as Novices, and then Accepted, and are only raised to Aes Sedai after they complete a brutal test involving the completion of one hundred weaves under intense pressure.
At some point in their training, initiates receive a Great Serpent ring, which initially has no gemstone. Once a sister is raised to a full Aes Sedai, the ring receives a gem in the color of her Ajah. Being raised to Aes Sedai is sometimes referred to as "taking the shawl", as they also receive a shawl in the color of the Ajah, but this is worn less frequently than their rings.
A fundamental aspect of their training is learning not to take too much of the One Power and therefore be overwhelmed by the sweetness of channeling. Initiates learn to control their behavior, so they can direct the One Power at will.
Known Aes Sedai
- Alanna Mosvani (Green Ajah)
- Queen Eldrene of Manetheren
- Gitara Moroso
- Kerene Nagashi (Green Ajah)
- Leane Sharif (Blue Ajah)
- Liandrin Guirale (Red Ajah)
- Maigan (Blue Ajah)
- Marith Jaen (Amyrlin Seat)
- Moiraine Damodred (Blue Ajah)
- Siuan Sanche (Amyrlin Seat; raised from the Blue Ajah)
- Verin Mathwin (Brown Ajah)
- In the audition scripts, Aes Sedai were referred to as "witches" by all characters.
Behind the scenes videos
Changes from the book series
The Aes Sedai are adapted from the (book spoilers!) from the book series.
- Agelessness - In the book series, Aes Sedai have an ageless look. Although older Aes Sedai may have graying or even white hair, their skin does not age at all even if they live for centuries. This signature appearance is absent from the television series, which is explained by Rafe Judkins as requiring too much budget to retouch every frame when an Aes Sedai character appears on screen.
In addition to the Aes Sedai who have been confirmed thus far, Rafe Judkins has made reference to other important Aes Sedai from the book series, such as (book spoilers!), (book spoilers!), (book spoilers!) and (book spoilers!), making it likely that these characters will appear at some point in the series.