2.4: Days of Yore

This subsection contains information on and discussion of questions about things in the past, from the Age of Legends to the Aiel War.

2.4.01: Who was Beidomon? --Updated

Beidomon was a male channeler in the AOL who worked with Mierin (aka Lanfear) to create the Bore. The question is, was he somebody important to the story, or was he just some poor grad student?

We know that he wasn't one of the male Forsaken. In the Guide, we learn all of their original names, and what they did before turning to the Dark Side. None of them were named "Beidomon," and none of them did the kind of research into the One Power that Lanfear did (see section 1.1.1).

It has been suggested that LTT was Beidomon, based on the fact that he and Mierin were lovers at one point, and upon a few scanty quotes. One of these is from [TEOTW: Prologue, Dragonmount, xv]: "him who brought the Shadow... they named Dragon." The other is [TEOTW: 4, The Gleeman, 44]: "I will tell you of the end of the Age of Legends, of the Dragon, and of his attempt to free the Dark One into the world of men." However, this idea does not hold water. For one thing, LTT was named "Lews Therin Telamon," not "Beidomon." Secondly, we know from [Guide: 6, The Female Forsaken and the Darkfriends, 62] that LTT dumped Mierin "some years before the drilling of the Bore." Thirdly, LTT was a politician/bureaucrat, the leader of the Hall of Servants, not a researcher [Guide: 3, The Age of Legends, 31]. Furthermore, the bits about him that brought the Shadow being named Dragon are from the late Third Age and the Fourth Ages, long after true details were confused and forgotten.

The best guess we can make, based on the scanty evidence we have, is that Beidomon was just some guy who was part of Mierin's research group, who assisted her in the actual drilling. The Guide [Guide: 6, The Female Forsaken and the Darkfriends, 63] tells us that Mierin was "fortunate to be one of the few to survive the backlash that destroyed the Sharom and most of the Collam Daan."

Jordan gave us more details about Beidomon in one of the Tor Questions of the Week archived by the 13th Depository:

Beidomon was a male Aes Sedai, and a research genius, who believed that they were onto something great. The drilling of the Bore itself caused great damage, and Beidomon, Lanfear and others involved were blamed for that. Once it became clear what had actually happened, the opprobrium increased, and Beidomon sought obscurity, finally committing suicide when he was unable to achieve it. Everyone knew his name, and what he had done. He had nowhere to hide.

2.4.02: Did LTT balefire himself?

[Emmet O'Brien, Pam Korda]

No. He died by ODing on the One Power. RJ said so at the talk he gave in Dublin in November 1993.

2.4.03: Who is the Green Man? Who were the Aiel? What is the Song? Who will find the Song?

[Erica Sadun, Pam Korda, Teri Pettit, Aaron Bergman]


Who is the Green Man?

He is Someshta, the last of the Nym, a type of creature which was made of vegetable matter. He is described first in [TEOTW: 49, The Dark One Stirs, 621]. However we find out exactly who he is in the fourth book. [TSR: 26, The Dedicated, 303]:

A stir at the end of the field told him one of the Nym was approaching. The great form, head and shoulders and chest taller than any Ogier, stepped out onto the seeded ground, and Coumin did not have to see to know he left footprints filled with sprouting things. It was Someshta, surrounded by clouds of butterflies, white and yellow and blue...Each field would have its Nym, now...the Nym were older than anyone. Some said the Nym never died, not so long as plants grew...

Many years later, during the Breaking, we see him again, this time with the characteristic fissure in his face. He is being set to the task of guarding the Eye of the World, the Horn, the dragon banner and one of the seals [TSR: 26, The Dedicated, 300-301].

Who were the Aiel?

The Aiel (formerly the Da'shain Aiel) were the "Dedicated" who worked for the Ancient Aes Sedai. The group was hereditary and had features of light skin, gray or blue eyes and mostly reddish or blond hair. All Aiel could be identified by their particular hair style which was cut short with a tail hanging in the back. They were dedicated to a life of non-violence, following the "Way of the Leaf". Some male Aiel worked with the Ogier and the Nym in planting as they had the gift of the "Voice", the seed singing (this may not be limited to Aiel; in the TEOTW prologue, LTT asks Elan Morin if he has the Voice). Although the Ogier continue to have "tree singers", the Voice seems to be a talent that has disappeared. When the Aiel did their work in the fields, they wore light gray and brown "working clothes" (cadin'sor). The clothes, the hair style and the avoidance of the use of weaponry which cannot be used for other purposes than killing people remains today, but the talent of the Voice is currently unknown.

What is the Song?

The Tinkers, an early offshoot of the Aiel, decided to give up their duty of hiding *'angreal and instead dedicate their lives to re-finding the safety and peace of their past [TSR: 26, The Dedicated, 296]. They believe this will come about through finding the "growing song," described in [TSR: 26, The Dedicated, 303]:

The Ogier began it, as was fitting, standing to sing, great bass rumbles like the earth singing. The Aiel rose, men's voices lifting in their own song, even the deepest at a higher pitch than the Ogier's. Yet the songs braided together, and Someshta took those threads and wove them into his dance... The song caught him up, and he almost felt that it was himself, not the sounds he made that Someshta wove into the soil and around the seeds.

The Song is not to be confused with the Ogier Tree-Songs. The Ogier songs may be the Ogier part of the growing ceremony described above, or they may be something similar, but different in purpose.

For the Tinkers, "The Song" has become more than just the human part of the AOL growing ceremony. The Tinkers' legendary song is something that will bring back the peaceful lifestyle known by the Da'shain Aiel during the Age of Legends. Teri Pettit explains, "The Tuatha'an began their search looking for a safe haven where they could return to a way of life in which Aiel singing together worked wonders. That eventually got distorted into a life of perpetual travel searching for 'The Song', as if there were just one, and it was something a single traveler could know." [TSR: 26, The Dedicated, 296]

So, when we say "Will the Tinkers find the Song?" we really mean, "Will the Tinkers rediscover the AOL growing ceremony, plus the talent of the Voice, and be able to recreate the peaceful existence of their ancestors, the Da'shain Aiel?"

If the Song will be found, who will find it?

The primary contenders are Aram, Perrin and Rand. Aram's stated life goal had been to find the Song until he took up the sword in defense of Emond's Field and became 'Lost' to his people. To find the Song would reinstate him and justify his choice of giving up the peaceful Way of the Leaf. Perrin on the other hand keeps getting faced with the choice of axe or hammer: that is, the choice of creation or destruction, war or peace, way-of-the-warrior or way-of-the-leaf. Furthermore, Perrin is a contender to find the Song because of Min's viewing of Perrin standing among the flowering trees. Rand, and probably some of the Aiel clan chiefs, have actually heard the Song in the glass columns of Rhuidean.


Further Evidence that Rand will find the Song:

...ages past and will be in ages to come. Let the Prince of the Morning sing to the land that green things will grow and the valleys give forth lambs." [TEOTW: Prologue, Dragonmount, xv] (Emphasis added)

It is entirely possible that the Song is lost forever (or at least until the Age of Legends comes around again). Aaron Bergman explains: "In the breaking that followed the sealing of the bore, the Da'shain were scattered. Some ended up at Rhuidean with the caravans. Some broke off, eventually becoming the Tinkers. Anyway, during those times when mountains moved around when they were bored and food and water were scarce, the memory of the singing survived. This grew to become linked with the memory of the peace of the Age of Legends. This easily progressed to the idea that if they could discover this ephemeral 'Song', the Age of Legends would come anew. I think one of the themes buried in these novels is that the past is dead. You can't hope to regain the past. Rand can't go back to the Two Rivers and become a shepherd. The Age of Legends is dead, it will not return for a very long time; certainly not in the next (Fourth) Age. The Tuatha'an are seeking to regain the past. The 'Song' is a remnant of the past. Thus, the Song will not be found." There is no Song that will recreate the Age of Legends, for it is past.

2.4.04: Jain Farstrider: Where is he now?

[Pam Korda, Leigh Butler, Craig Moe]

Jain seems to have a cult following among the Jordanites. "Jain lives!" they proclaim. So, as promised, here is a list of all the suspects in the "who is Jain in disguise" contest.


First, what do we know about Jain?

In [Guide: 15, The World after the Breaking, 147], we have something about the last time Jain was seen alive:


"No one knows if anything lies north of the Blasted Lands other than the frozen ice of the northern ocean. Jain Farstrider was said to have willingly traveled there; however, whatever knowledge he gained was lost when he vanished within its trackless depths."

From [TEOTW: Glossary, entry "Farstrider, Jain", 663]:


"A hero of the northern lands who journeyed to many lands and had many adventures; the author of several books, as well as being the subject of books and stories. He vanished in 981 NE, after returning from a trip into the Great Blight which some say had taken him all the way to Shayol Ghul."

From [TEOTW: 47, More Tales of the Wheel, 594-595]:


Lord Agelmar is telling the story of the fall of Malkier: "When Cowin Fairheart's treachery was revealed and he was taken by young Jain Charin - already called Jain Farstrider..."

Malkier fell a little less than 50 years before TEOTW (say 45-50 years), according to Agelmar. At the time, Jain was a young man, say between 17 and 20. Thus, at the start of TEOTW, Jain would be 62-70 years old--pretty long in the tooth.

From [TEOTW: 51, Against the Shadow, 638]:


Ba'alzamon, to Rand: "'Jain Farstrider, a hero... whom I painted like a fool and sent to the Ogier thinking he was free of me.'"

This must refer to Loial's story in [TEOTW: 42, Remembrance of Dreams, 532] about the man who came to Stedding Shangtai shortly after the Aiel War, on the verge of death, but then vanished again after recovering: "'He said the Dark One intended to blind the Eye of the World, and slay the Great Serpent, kill time itself.'"

The Guide notwithstanding, then, the Ogier in Stedding Shangtai were apparently the last people to see Jain Farstrider alive before he vanished for good - until now, perhaps.

WH finally gives us a non-loony candidate for Jain's identity: Noal Charin.

Noal fits what we know of Jain to a "T." He's the right age, he's widely-traveled (or at least seems to be), he has the same last name as Jain, and he's good at telling stories of his travels. Furthermore, he is interested in Darkfriends, matching up with Jain F.'s association with the Shadow. Noal also seems to be intimately familiar with Farstrider and the circumstances of his life. [KOD 6]

People have objected to this, on the grounds that it's rather contrived to think Jain Farstrider would attempt to hide himself by only changing his first name and not his last. It's also been suggested that Noal might be a relative of Jain, perhaps a brother, and not Jain himself. Noal corroborates this theory by claiming Jain was his cousin when asked about his knowledge of the world and tale-spinning.

Note, however, that Jain was probably mind-fucked pretty well by Ishy twenty years ago. If Noal is the barrel man from ACOS, as seems clear (see section 2.2.3), we know that he's got some memory problems (and if he is additionally Graendal's old man, her attentions undoubtedly would not have helped his mental state either).  However, it seems clear in his conversations with Mat that he is deliberately hiding his true identity, rather than simply being unaware of who he his.

As for the "relative of Jain" idea, we've been anticipating Jain's appearance for years. It'd be supremely lame to have his brother/uncle/nephew turn up in his place.

It seems pretty clear that Noal is Jain, but just in case, here are the (mostly loony) alternate possibilities that have been proposed:


  1. Elyas Machera: Both Elyas and Jain are Borderlanders, and Elyas is pretty old. However, this is unlikely for several reasons. For one thing, there is no mention of Jain ever having been a Warder, and we know that Elyas was one. Secondly, there is lots of evidence that Ishy messed with Jain's brain quite a bit. Elyas is a Wolfbrother, which seems to offer some protection against that sort of thing, and if Elyas was touched by the DO, it's likely that the wolves would reject him.
  2. Tam al'Thor: Not very likely, since the ages don't match. (I would put Tam at 50, tops, probably younger. He's definitely not older than 60.) Plus, RJ has said that Tam spent his time away from the 2 Rivers in Illian, which precludes his running around the Borderlands and the Blight. At a signing in Atlanta, RJ said that Tam and Rand were originally the same character - a soldier come home to a small town. This pretty much precludes his being Farstrider, no?
  3. Bayle Domon, because he seems to be very well traveled. However, the ages match even less than for Tam. Plus, Bayle definitely do be an Illianer. We've had Bayle POVs, and there is no indication that he is anybody other than who he seems - a very unfortunate ship captain.
  4. Graendal's old man in wrinkled coat. (This might also be the Domani king she displaced, or Noal Charin as well.)

2.4.05: The Old Tongue and the New Tongue

RJ on how he invented the Old Tongue:

"The words come partly from Gaelic, Russian, Arabic, Chinese, Japanese. The grammar and syntax I believe I invented myself, although it's possible that another language uses the same. Of course, just as with English, I have deliberately put in some very illogical inconsistencies." [America Online chat, 27-6-96]

Why doesn't the Old Tongue bear any relation to the New Tongue spoken by Rand and Company?

It probably does, but RJ has kindly "translated" the New Tongue into English so that we can read the books and he can make lots of money :). Old Tongue phrases are not "translated" in order to add "flavor" to the story. Think of Tolkien, who did create entire languages. Even he didn't write The Lord of the Rings in Elvish or some other Middle-Earth language.

Is there an Old Tongue Dictionary?

There are several on the Web. The first, and one of the most complete (which many unethical people have plagiarised) is The Compleat Old Tongue, compiled by Aaron Bergman, Andrea Leistra, Don Harlow, "Mark," and "BAClubb." It can be found at http://linuxmafia.com/waygate/old.tongue.guide.

Why do all the characters speak the same language?

At the East of the Sun con, held in Sweden 16-18 June, 1995, RJ explained the concept of the unified language. He said there had been a single language in use all over the world (the Old Tongue), and the writing and printing of books continued throughout the Breaking, albeit to a very limited extent. The written word introduced a very large conserving factor in the language-change mechanism. (report by Karl-Johan Norén)

Chad Orzel gives a further explanation of why we shouldn't expect a lot of language drift:

  1. Point the first: three thousand years ago, we have the AOL. At this point, it's pretty safe to assume that everybody speaks the same language.
  2. Then, we have the Breaking. People scatter, keeping what little knowledge they can intact. Chaos reigns. Whatever is settled upon at the end of the Breaking will henceforth be called "The Old Tongue." Presumably, the Old Tongue is spoken primarily on the main continent. We have no idea what happens in other areas of the globe (Seanchan and Shara), but this doesn't really matter, as we've never heard a Sharan talk, and the Seanchan are the product of an invasion from Randland proper.
  3. Languages drift for a while, but it doesn't matter how much, as Artur Hawkwing pops up, and conquers everybody. A new lingua franca is established, which shall be called the New Tongue, or "English" as Jordan has translated the whole thing anyway. Presumably whatever they speak has clear roots tracing it to the Old Tongue. Hawkwing conquers the entire main continent, some of Shara, has dealings with the Aiel, and his descendents conquer (and become) Seanchan. Again, everybody speaks the same language, with a few quirks here and there.
  4. Almost a thousand years pass, and languages drift. Now, just how far can we reasonably expect them to drift? For convenience, let's look at modern Europe, or at least those parts of Europe which formed the core of the Roman Empire. This gives Spanish, French, and Italian, plus a handful of others which I'll ignore completely. It's been fifteen hundred years or so since Rome fell, how different are these three? And what are the sources of the differences between them and Latin? Not that much. If one knows Italian, one can puzzle out a lot of Spanish, if the Spanish-speaker talks slowly, and vice versa. All four languages have many similar words. Now, consider what we've had happening in Europe in those fifteen hundred years: Most of Europe was at one time or another overrun by those pesky Germanic types, and Spain got invaded by Moors. We've had Russian-type languages pushed in from the East, Scandinavian from the North, and I-don't-know-what from the South.

    Now, look at Randland. Who's going to invade? Hawkwing basically conquered the world, so there's no one who can bring another language in from outside. And even if there were such an incursion, the language being brought in would still be pretty close to the Old Tongue, since everybody spoke the same language back in the AoL. And what do we have? We have a good number of funny accents, the Seanchan slur everything, to the degree that Our Heroes have trouble understanding them, the Aiel have a number of odd words for things not found in the Wetlands, Bayle Domon do be using odd verb forms, and the Taraboners, they put the words in the wrong order, yes? Is this really that unrealistic? Given the utter lack of invasion from outside, or even the possibility of same, I don't find it hard to swallow the relative uniformity of language in Randland.

2.4.06: Who or what was (the) Tamyrlin?

In [TEOTW: Prologue, Dragonmount, xi], Ishy visits LTT after he kills his family:

Elan Morin grimaced. "Look at you," he said scornfully. "Once you stood first among the Servants. Once you wore the Ring of Tamyrlin, and sat in the High Seat. Once you summoned the Nine Rods of Dominion. Now look at you!"

Scott Mocklin tells us that the new glossary in To The Blight (vol. 2 of the YA version of TEOTW) has the following entry:

Ring of Tamyrlin (TAHM-ehr-lin): a legendary ring, believed mythical by most people, worn by the leader of the Aes Sedai during the Age of Legends. Stories about the Ring of Tamyrlin include that it was an angreal or sa'angreal or ter'angreal of immense power. It supposedly was named after the first person to learn how to tap into the Source and channel the One Power, and in some tales, was actually made by that man or woman. Despite what many Aes Sedai say, no one knows whether it was a man or a woman who first learned to channel. Some believe that the present title of Amyrlin is a corruption of Tamyrlin.

Which pretty much matches previous speculation about the word's origin.

2.4.07: What did Ogier do of old?

[Windsor Williams, Pam Korda]

Basically, I'm wondering about the role of the Ogier in pre-Breaking society. From what we know in general, the stedding did exist during the period, but the Ogier were not bound to them by the Longing as they are at the time of the series. So it seems reasonable to assume that they were fairly common everywhere, although most common in and around the stedding.

We know they were involved with the seed singing (as per the "through the eyes of Coumin" scene [TSR: 26, The Dedicated, 302-5]), but what other roles did they have? Some clues exist:

Ogier soldiers-- from the Coumin sequence, right at the beginning [TSR: 26, The Dedicated, 302]

He could see the next field, lined the same way, beyond the soldiers with their shocklances sitting atop armored jo-cars. A hoverfly buzzed overhead in its patrol, a deadly black metal wasp containing two men. He was sixteen, and the women had decided his voice was finally deep enough to join in the seed singing. The soldiers fascinated him, men and Ogier, the way a colorful poisonous snake might. They killed.

The "men and Ogier" phrase seems to imply that there were Ogier soldiers as well as humans.

Ogier as police or enforcers-- again, from the Coumin sequence [TSR: 26, The Dedicated, 304]:

Abruptly something struck Coumin in the mouth and his legs buckled; he was pushing himself to his knees before he realized he was down. A hand put to his mouth came away bloody. He looked up to find an angry-faced townsman standing over him, nursing a fist. "Why did you do that?" he asked.

The townsman spat at him. "The Forsaken are dead. Dead, do you hear? Lanfear will not protect you anymore. We will root out all of you who served the Forsaken while pretending to be on our side, and treat the lot of you as we treated that crazy old man."

A woman was tugging at the man's arm. "Come away, Toma. Come away, and hold your foolish tongue! Do you want the Ogier to come for you?" Suddenly wary, the man let her pull him away into the crowd.

"Do you want the Ogier to come for you?" and the man's response argue that the Ogier were enforcers of peace/police of some sort, and effective ones as well. I'm guessing that they would come for him for the killing of Charn ("that crazy old man"), but maybe it's his statements, instead?

I hadn't thought of Ogier in terms of soldiers or police before, but these passages caught my eye while re-reading the series. We've been told at one point or another that old tales refer to Ogier as bad opponents, who rarely get angry but are very dangerous when they do. Watching Loial's anger over the destruction of the Ogier grove in Tear, Perrin remembers an old saying: "'To anger the Ogier and pull the mountains down on your head.' Everyone took its meaning as to try to do something that was impossible. Perrin thought maybe the meaning had changed with the years. Maybe in the beginning, it had been 'Anger the Ogier, and you pull the mountains down on your head.' Difficult to do, but deadly if accomplished" [TSR: 18, Into the Ways, 211].

From the Guide, TPOD, and WH, we know that Ogier in Seanchan are not all as peaceful as those in Randland:

  • "Ogier make up a portion of the Deathwatch, although they are the only ones not property, and are considered incredibly fierce and more deadly than their human counterparts. The Ogier of the Deathwatch are grim in demeanor and action compared to their brothers and sisters across the ocean." [Guide: 17, Seanchan, 161]
  • "Many Deathwatch Guards went without coat or shirt whenever possible to display [their raven tattoos]. The humans, anyway. Ogier Gardeners were not marked or owned, but that was between them and the Empress." [TPOD: 23, Fog of War, Storm of Battle, 443] This implies that the "Gardeners" are members of the Deathwatch Guard, despite the odd name.
  • The Glossary entry for Deathwatch Guards says: "Deathwatch Guards, the: The elite military formation of the Seanchan Empire, including both humans and Ogier." [TPOD: Glossary, 596]
  • We get a description of the Ogier Deathwatch guards in [WH: 14, What A Veil Hides, 325] and again in [WH: 18, An Offer, 377] that bears out the Guide description above (grim, forbidding, and not to be crossed), as well as confirming that Ogier Deathwatch guards are called Gardeners.

The fact that the Seanchan Ogier participate in warfare indicates that the Ogier may have a history of being fighters which the Ogier of Randland proper have lost.

Finally, it is possible that Ogier fought in battle during the Trolloc Wars. When Rand meets Loial for the first time, he tells Loial that he is from the Two Rivers, which used to be Manetheren [TEOTW: 36, Web of the Pattern, 465]. Loial replies, referring to the destruction of Manetheren, "There was a very fine grove there. Your pain sings in my heart, Rand al'Thor. We could not come in time." The implication is, of course, that the Ogier could have helped in the battle if they had come in time.

2.4.08: Were there Ajahs in the Age of Legends?

In short, no. The Ajahs as we know them did not exist during the AOL. The Guide tells us [Guide: 9, Formation of the White Tower, 90] that "the organization of AS in the AOL, or perhaps their manner of functioning, [was as] 'a vast sea of ajah...all constantly shrinking, growing, dividing, combining, melting away only to be reborn in some new guise and begin the process once more.'" We are also told that the term "ajah" meant "an informal and temporary group of people gathered together for a common purpose or goal, or by a common set of beliefs."

In other words, the AOL Aes Sedai did not consist of fixed groups, each dedicated to a different purpose, but rather formed factions based on the issues at hand. In fact, many of the AOL Aes Sedai were not "dedicated" Aes Sedai, i.e. people whose career was to be Aes Sedai, but "followed vocations which had little or nothing to do with the OP or being Aes Sedai. When it was necessary to form a circle to perform some task, these AS could be summoned... by the Hall of the Servants." [Guide: 3, The Age of Legends, 30]

The Ajahs of the present-day AS have their roots in the founding of the White Tower. In short, during and after the Breaking, there were many autonomous groups of channelers. Eventually, some of these groups joined together to form the modern Aes Sedai. The Ajah setup derives from the goals and principles of the various autonomous groups who founded the Tower [Guide: 9, Formation of the White Tower, 91-92].

However, one can speculate that the colors of the Ajahs were probably representative of something in the AOL or a previous Age, because the Ajah colors are the colors surrounding the Portal Stones.

2.4.09: Was the Sharom the Dark One's Prison?

No. Demandred's analysis [LOC: Prologue, The First Message, 15] implies that the DO is imprisoned OUTSIDE the world/Pattern, in some sort of "Dungeon Dimension." The Bore is a kind of thinning of the universe, a weakness in the space-time continuum, by which the DO can reach out of the Dungeon Dimension to affect/enter the Real World.

From the RJ Online Q-and-A session on Compuserve (19 October, 1994), RJ says, "The Sharom and the Collam Daan are a university/research center." The Guide expands on this, saying, "The Sharom was one of the classic examples of functional beauty. It might seem impractical to suspend a building high in the air, especially a scientific research facility that required its visitors to use an airborne transport or the OP...." [Guide: 3, The Age of Legends, 34]. So, the Sharom was some sort of HEP (High-Energy Power) research facility, and its only connection with the DO's prison is that Mierin and Beidomon created the Bore inside it.

2.4.10: Tigraine = Shaiel, an Analysis

It is a certainty that Tigraine was Rand's mother, Shaiel.

Tigraine was the Daughter-Heir of Andor, and was married to Taringail Damodred. They had a son, Galad. Tigraine and her brother Luc were sent to Tar Valon, in the usual tradition of the royalty of Andor. Tigraine vanished mysteriously from Tar Valon, never to be heard from again. [TEOTW: 34, The Last Village, 441-2]

In [TSR: 34, He Who Comes With the Dawn, 392-3], we learn about Rand's mother, Shaiel. Her tale corresponds marvelously with Tigraine's.

Add to this the fact that many people comment on how Rand looks like the Royal Family of Andor (Lord Barthanes [TGH: 32, Dangerous Words, 392], and many Andoran nobles [LOC: 26, Connecting Lines, 380]), the description of Luc [TSR: 33, A New Weave in the Pattern, 368]), and there you have it.

In LOC at one point in Caemlyn, Rand finally learns about Tigraine's story and is very upset until he figures out that he is not actually directly related to Elayne. Thus, he has placed himself in the family tree (see section 2.5.1) even if no one else has.

Yes, this means that Galad is Rand's half-brother.

2.4.11: What was the "Vileness" after the Aiel War?

[Richard Boyé]

The "Vileness", as termed by Cadsuane, after the Aiel War probably refers to a number of things. For starters, there was the sudden death of the Amyrlin, Tamra Ospenya, and a rash of deaths among the Aes Sedai, including several prominent, high ranking ones, most under mysterious circumstances. Meanwhile, below the surface, several other things were occurring, most of which are very troubling. There was a sudden increase in deaths among men and boys who seemed "lucky." Also, a number of channeling men were gentled by the Red Ajah illegally, on the spot, and not within Tar Valon as prescribed by Tower law.

This unsettled period in Tower politics seemed to end when the three Red Sitters in the Hall were summarily exiled, and the reasons for their removals were "Sealed to the Flame," which in effect classified the whole affair as for the Amyrlin's eyes only (although "Sealed to the Flame" can also involve the Amyrlin swearing a sister into her confidence, as Elaida did when she recruited Seaine to seek out the Black Ajah). All in all, it was a messy, upsetting time among the Aes Sedai, and all the above-described events seemed to be related.

Most of the links between the events were given out in various places throughout the series, but Legends: New Spring finally nailed down some of the events.

This is now what seems to be the sequence of events:

Tamra Ospenya, the Amyrlin during the Aiel War, was murdered by Jarna Malari, a publicly Gray sister, in an effort to learn what Tamra knew about the Second Coming [ACOS: Prologue, Lightnings, 42]. Jarna was the leader of the Black Ajah at the time. Tamra was the Amyrlin who was present when Gitara Moroso had her Foretelling about the Rebirth.

Tamra was canny enough to know that there was some Black Ajah activity afoot and swore Siuan and Moiraine to secrecy. From L:NS, we learn that Tamra really wasn't stupid enough to just send two newly raised Accepted (Moiraine and Siuan) out to find the Dragon Reborn. She had very carefully and surreptitiously called in and sent out a group of Searchers, most of whom were later killed by the Black Ajah. It is still unclear whether Cadsuane was among the Searchers, but it's quite possible she was. The ones that Siuan and Moiraine were aware of were: Aisha, Kerene Nagashi, Valera, Ludice and Meilyn Arganya [L:NS, 668]. (Side note: Cadsuane gave Kerene and Meilyn as examples of the strongest in the Tower.)

From her interrogation of Tamra before killing her, Jarna learned something about the Second Coming, but misinterpreted it, and didn't realize that he had just been born. Possibly she construed what she had learned as the Dragon Reborn was ready to announce himself, or maybe she just learned that he was alive, but had no idea of his age. It's unlikely, therefore, that any of the Searchers chosen by Tamra belonged to the Black Ajah, because then the Black sisters would have known the same details Moiraine did (i.e. the Dragon was a baby, born during the final battle of the Aiel War, on Dragonmount). They were searching blindly.

In any event, the race to find the Dragon had begun, and the Black Ajah unleashed a campaign of murder to get to him first, killing anyone, man or boy, rumored to be "lucky," on the assumption that any man who seemed lucky might be channeling, since luckiness is an outward signal of unconscious channeling [L:NS, 712].

However, while that was going on, and for a while afterwards, the Red Ajah was running a second front of the campaign. Later on, Jarna Malari became Keeper to Tamra's successor, Sierin Vayu, (the Gray with more than a touch of Red in her). Jarna, still leading the Black Ajah, implemented a program of search and destroy. She directed Galina Casban, who led the Red Ajah, to use her Red minions to seek out any man that could channel and gentle him on the spot. It might have been the work of a selected cadre of Red Sisters who wouldn't balk at this flagrant violation of Tower law. We know it is illegal to gentle a man "extra-judiciously," away from Tower [ACOS: Prologue, Lightnings, 22]. By doing this, Jarna began a process that would circumvent the Tower's "Dragon-finding Process," which was to bring every channeling man to the Tower, where they would put him to some sort of inquest to determine if he was the Dragon Reborn, and then gentle him. One assumes that they would not have gentled the Dragon Reborn once they actually found him.

One of the victims of this 'search and destroy' directive was Thom's nephew Owyn. Presumably, Owyn is among the gentled men who do not appear in the Tower records Elaida and Alviarin are discussing in ACOS. Elaida and Alviarin later discuss that merely knowing that there are channeling men who do not appear in the records is dangerous. The danger likely stems from the notion that because they are not listed means that you would only know from personal knowledge, which would suggest some involvement. Elaida's comments seem to imply that she participated in at least one of those missions [ACOS: Prologue, Lightnings, 22], and Toveine confirms this [TPOD: 26, The Extra Bit, 513].

Meanwhile, all hell breaks loose. Ishamael puts Jarna Malari to death in a derelict ter'angreal for messing with the program. We know that Ishy had notions of finding the nascent Dragon Reborn intact so that he could turn him to the Dark Side of the Force. What Jarna had done was severely reduce the odds of that happening, so it seems that he killed her for acting as a loose cannon. It is likely that this is what ended the campaign of murder by the Black Ajah, but the Reds' illegal search and destroy mission continued [ACOS: Prologue, Lightnings, 42].

Two years later Sierin Vayu died. Ishamael clamped down on the Great Council of the Black Ajah to determine that none of them had anything to do with Sierin's death. It is possible that she gave some sort of tacit approval toward the 'search and destroy sorties' (she was pro-Red) and the Red Ajah had a hand in killing her to silence her. It is also a very real possibility that Sierin Vayu herself was Black Ajah.

Alviarin seems to think that the Reds did have a hand in her death, and disavowed any Black participation [ACOS: Prologue, Lightnings, 42]. In WH, we learn that Chesmal Emry, one of Liandrin's original coven of Black Ajah, is very proud of the fact that she induced the Red Ajah into murdering Sierin, which is interesting because this somewhat contradicts Alviarin, since the Black Ajah did have something to do with the death, but didn't actually do the deed themselves. [WH: 10, A Plan Succeeds, 242] However, as John Hamby suggests, if Sierin was Black, then Galina could have used the Reds to silence her, to protect Black Ajah secrecy.

Whoever was responsible, it was to no avail. The secret came out, and the Red Sitters in the Hall were exiled. Perhaps the rest of the Hall assumed that they had also exiled the Red Generalissima, because many Ajah heads also hold Seats in the Hall, or it is possible that they realized that they could never learn who really led the Red Ajah, and enacted their justice on the high ranking Reds they had at hand. Thus they exiled Toveine, Tsutama and Lirene, but left Galina untouched. We don't know at this time whether the "Red Purge" occured under Sierin Vayu, or the Blue Sister, Marith Jaen, who succeeded her.

There is a slight quibble regarding the timing of the exile of the Red Sitters. We see from Toveine's POV in TPOD that she recalls her exile on a farm as lasting "twenty years," [TPOD: 26, The Extra Bit, 513] but that doesn't wash with the rest of the continuity, since we know that Owyn at least was gentled only fifteen years ago [TSR: 17, Deceptions, 195]. If Toveine and her fellow Sitters were exiled twenty years ago, that places their exile immediately after the War and probably even before Moiraine and Siuan learned of the BA murder campaign. This doesn't make sense, because if the murder campaign was the reason for their exile, it seems difficult to believe that they would have gotten off with mere exile. Furthermore, in ACOS, Elaida mentions that all three Sitters went into exile 15 years ago, which fits more squarely into the timeline [ACOS: Prologue, Lightnings, 21]. It's likely that Toveine was just exaggerating or rounding off to the nearest decade (or RJ slipped up).