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The Rebel Mages, also known as the Free Mages of Thedas, are one of the main factions in the Mage-Templar War.

Background[]


This section contains spoilers for:
Dragon Age: Asunder.


BioWare canon.png
The plot follows BioWare's own canon, meaning it may not follow some of the player's choices in the games.

In 9:38 Dragon, after the Kirkwall Rebellion led to increased restrictions on Circles across Thedas, Grand Enchanter Fiona led the College of Enchanters in a vote to secede from the Chantry. Urging caution, Senior Enchanter Wynne persuaded the mages to vote against the motion. In response, the Templar Order dissolved the College of Enchanters.

Tensions were further exacerbated when Senior Enchanter Jeannot of the White Spire attempted to assassinate Divine Justinia V, leading to Lord Seeker Lambert taking control of the White Spire. When his attempts to suppress knowledge of the cure for Tranquility were unsuccessful, Divine Justinia called for another meeting of the College of Enchanters, to be held at the White Spire rather than its traditional seat of Cumberland. At the conclave of first enchanters, Grand Enchanter Fiona once again argued for secession. When Lambert declared their conclave treasonous, the mages refused to surrender, leading to a fight that left many dead on both sides. The templars were eventually able to overpower the mages and imprison them in the White Spire's dungeons.

While Divine Justinia drew Lord Seeker and most of the templars away for an "urgent" meeting at the Grand Cathedral, Wynne, Leliana, Shale, Cole and Knight-Captain Evangeline infiltrated the White Spire, freed the first enchanters and destroyed the Spire's entire collection of phylacteries. The surviving first enchanters fled to Andoral's Reach on the edge of Orlais.

A month later, Grand Enchanter Fiona called for a final vote on secession. As too few first enchanters were present, some having been killed in the White Spire, others in further templar crackdowns, representatives of the Fraternities of Enchanters cast their votes instead. As expected, the Libertarians voted for secession while the Loyalists voted against it, leaving the Aequitarians with the deciding vote. Rhys, their newly appointed leader following the death of his mother, Wynne, during their escape of the White Spire, reluctantly voted for independence, cementing the dissolution of the Circles.



This section contains spoilers for:
Dragon Age: Inquisition.


Whereas the Circle was established not merely to protect the world from mages, but also to allow mages to practice their art safely and without fear, and,

Whereas under Lord Seeker Lambert's command, the templars sworn to protect all people—including mages—from the harmful effects of magic, have instead persecuted mages with such biased judgment as to worsen the problems they were meant to mitigate, and,

Whereas the Rite of Tranquility intended as a tool of last resort to stop uncontrolled mages from hurting themselves or others, has instead been used for punitive and political purposes to silence dissent and inhibit civilized discourse, and,

Whereas Andraste herself intended the relationship between mage and templar to be one of practitioner and protector, not prisoner and jailer, and this contract has been broken, leaving mages in fear for their lives from those sworn to protect them,

Now, therefore, the Circle of Magi declares the following:

We, the mages of Ferelden and Orlais, do hereby dissolve the Circles and renounce our sworn submission to the Order of the Templars, effective immediately.

We reiterate Andraste's assertion that magic was made to serve man, not rule over him, and state unequivocally that we will use our abilities only to defend ourselves from those who would see us relinquish our lives and freedoms under the presumption of guilt for crimes we have not committed.

We condemn those practitioners of magic who, through illness of mind or understandable but misguided anger at those who oppressed them, would use their Maker-given powers to threaten innocent lives, and we pledge to aid any legitimate and impartial government in bringing these lawless apostates to justice.

We look earnestly to a future of cooperation between all peoples of Thedas, free from persecution and prejudice, and hope to build a better world alongside all who approach us with friendship instead of fear.

Yours in service to Andraste and the Maker,
The Free Mages of Thedas

—A leaflet distributed in towns and villages across Orlais and Ferelden[1]


Involvement[]


This section contains spoilers for:
Dragon Age: Inquisition.


When Divine Justinia V managed to convince both mages and templars to convene for peace talks at the Temple of Sacred Ashes, Fiona sent intermediaries in her place, suspecting a trap. Lord Seeker Lucius did the same. When the explosion that created the Breach killed almost everyone at the conclave, some blamed the Herald of Andraste, others blamed the mages, while the mages themselves blamed the templars. The Mage-Templar War resumed and the rebel mages were once again subject to the templars' brutality. Fiona led her followers to Ferelden after the monarch granted them refuge in Redcliffe. A faction of Loyalist mages refused to join the Mage Rebellion and instead rallied around Vivienne, First Enchanter of Montsimmard.

Following the debacle involving the Chantry's denouncement of the Herald of Andraste and the templars' refusal to return to the Chantry, Fiona seeks out the Herald in Val Royeaux. She suspects the templars to be the cause of the explosion at the conclave and asks that the Herald come to the Gull and Lantern Tavern in Redcliffe to discuss a possible alliance to close the Breach.

If the Herald travels to Redcliffe, they are informed upon arrival that the rebel mages have pledged themselves to the service of Magister Gereon Alexius of Tevinter, and are therefore no longer able to negotiate with the Inquisition directly. When the Herald confronts Fiona in the tavern, she shows no memory of their previous meeting in Val Royeaux, and is surprised to learn that the templars have left the Chantry. She defends her choice to align with Tevinter by saying that she had "no other choice."

The negotiations with Magister Alexius are cut short when his son Felix shows signs of illness. He discreetly slips a note to the Herald warning them of danger and asks them to go to the chantry. There, the Herald meets Dorian Pavus, who explains that Alexius, his former mentor, has manipulated time itself to recruit the mages before the Herald could do so, and warns that this magic is dangerously unstable and threatens to spread beyond Redcliffe, where rifts have already started to alter time around them. Felix joins in to reveal that his father is part of a cult known as the Venatori, who serve an entity known as the Elder One.

Back in Haven, the Herald receives an invitation to continue negotiations in Redcliffe Castle from Alexius—an obvious trap. The Herald can choose to go to Redcliffe or decide to go to Therinfal Redoubt to recruit the templars instead.

If the Herald recruits the mages:
The Herald agrees to play the bait while Leliana covertly moves her agents into the castle. Dorian insists on accompanying. When they confront Alexius, he attempts to erase the Herald from time, but instead accidentally sends them and Dorian forward by a year. In this future, the Elder One has killed Empress Celene and conquered all of southern Thedas with an army of demons. Eventually, after a forced showdown with Alexius, Dorian is able to use his knowledge of time magic to successfully bring the Herald and himself back to the present, where the magister is forced to surrender. No longer welcome in Ferelden, and without Tevinter's support, Fiona reluctantly accepts the Herald's offer of either a full alliance or forced conscription.

If the Herald recruits the templars:
With no one to stop him, Magister Alexius conscripts the mages into the Venatori. As a faction of the forces that attack Haven, Fiona and several mages are killed by the Herald in defense of the village.

Apostates in Witchwood

While Fiona's rebels retreat to Redcliffe, a faction of mages splits from the main group to settle in the Witchwood in the Hinterlands, urging their fellow mages to destroy the templars and conquer the world.[2] Fighting between these apostate mages and rogue templars has driven refugees from their homes and endangered everyone in the Hinterlands. When the Herald convenes with Corporal Vale in the Crossroads, he asks them to deal with the apostate mages terrorizing the Hinterlands. By finding their recruiting propaganda throughout the Hinterlands, the Herald can locate their headquarters in the Witchwood and eliminate them.

Wending Wood mages

If the Inquisitor completed the main quest Champions of the Just:
There are rumors of blood mages lurking about the Wending Wood. Jospehine has received several complaints from merchants traveling the Pilgrim's Path, a frequently ventured trade route situated between Denerim and the City of Amaranthine, and refers the matter to Cullen for investigation.[3]

The Inquisition's investigation uncovers several murdered mages just off the main road. Reports confirm that they do not appear to be blood mages, and that their corpses were purposefully dragged from where they were originally killed, as if someone intended for them to be discovered. A young noblewoman, rumored to be a mage sympathizer, is also found murdered soon after. Some mages start to blame the Inquisition's templars for the murders, which could potentially cause the Inquisition to lose the support of the nobility in Ferelden.

Further investigation proves that this was the work of an extremist cell of rebel mages who fear that the Inquisition's association with the templars will permanently crush what remains of their rebellion and have been actively working to stir up anti-templar and anti-Inquisition sentiment.[4]

Led by Knight-Captain Briony, the Inquisition's templars confront the mages in the Wending Wood. A few young mages surrender when offered amnesty and are taken to Skyhold, while the rest are defeated by the templars, thus restoring peace to the Wending Wood.[5]

Perendale mages

If the Inquisitor allied with the templars during Champions of the Just:
The Inquisition receives a request from the city of Perendale to remove a group of mages who have locked themselves in their former Circle Tower, as the populace fears what the mages have planned for the city. Knight-Captain Briony requests to handle the situation personally to prove herself to the Inquisition.

Inquisition soldiers accompany Briony and the Templars to the Circle, and while the mages are initially hostile, the Templars manage to subdue them without any casualties. Upon questioning, they discover that the mages had remained in the city following the uprisings out of fear of what the populace would do to them if they left the tower. Following the incident the Templars were able to safely escort the mages from the city and offered them a place within the Inquisition.

The Inquisition's presence does not go unnoticed. Word spreads that the Inquisition has successfully reined in the Templars—a feat the Chantry could not manage–and prevented unnecessary bloodshed in Perendale.[6]

The Extremists

If the Inquisitor conscripted the mages during In Hushed Whispers:
The Inquisition receives word of fifteen rebel mages gathering high quantities of explosive material, similar to the one used in Kirkwall. Agent Rector tracks down the location of the cell and Briony leads an attack on the camp. She reports back that ten packages of ordinances were successfully recovered at the site and nine mages died in the confrontation. In addition three were brought in for questioning; however, the remaining three managed to escape into the countryside.[7]


Fate[]


This section contains spoilers for:
Dragon Age: Inquisition.


If the Inquisition allied with the mages...
If Cassandra is Divine:
The mages refuse to rejoin the Circle of Magi and instead reform the College of Enchanters as a new order. From the beginning, the Circle and the College clash, fueling fears that a new war between mages is brewing.

If Leliana is Divine:
When Leliana disbands the Circle of Magi, the mages reform the College of Enchanters as a new order to seek new solutions to age-old problems. For the moment, mages across Thedas enjoy unprecedented acceptance.

If Vivienne is Divine:
The mages refuse to rejoin the Circle of Magi and instead try to reform the College of Enchanters as a new order. Vivienne immediately declares war to dissolve this order before it begins. Some mages surrender, while others return to the Inquisition. The Circle stands triumphant.

If the Inquisition conscripted the mages...
If Cassandra is Divine:
The mages accept to rejoin the Circle of Magi, but as a new order called the Bright Hand. This new college quickly dominates, pushing for reforms and close ties to the Inquisition. Rumors of a split within the Circle, a shadow war by unknown forces, start to circulate.

If Leliana is Divine:
After Leliana disbands the Circle, the mages remain with the Inquisition and form a new college called the Bright Hand.

If Vivienne is Divine:
The mages refuse to rejoin the Circle of Magi. Vivienne brings down her fury upon them. Some mages surrender, while others return to the Inquisition. The Circle stands triumphant.



This section contains spoilers for:
Trespasser.


Eventually, the remaining mages of southern Thedas settle into two rival organizations: the reformed College of Enchanters, led by veteran mages of the Inquisition, and the Circle of Magi under Vivienne as either Grand Enchanter or Divine Victoria. They coexist uneasily, vying for power.[8]


Quests[]

The Threat Remains The Threat Remains
In Hushed Whispers In Hushed Whispers
Champions of the Just Champions of the Just
Investigate Redcliffe Castle Investigate Redcliffe Castle (war table) (conditional)
The Order's Obligations The Order's Obligations (war table) (conditional)
In Your Heart Shall Burn In Your Heart Shall Burn (conditional)
Deal with Venatori Ally Deal with Venatori Ally (war table) (conditional)
Information from the Grand Enchanter Information from the Grand Enchanter (war table) (conditional)
The Extremists The Extremists (war table) (conditional)
Apostates in Witchwood Apostates in Witchwood (war table) (conditional)
Rumors of Maleficarum Rumors of Maleficarum (war table) (conditional)
False Accusations False Accusations (war table) (conditional)
Confront Mages in the Wending Wood Confront Mages in the Wending Wood (war table) (conditional)
Reparations for Redcliffe Reparations for Redcliffe (war table) (conditional)
What Pride Had Wrought What Pride Had Wrought (conditional)

Known members[]

Codex entries[]

Codex entry: Grand Enchanter Fiona Codex entry: Grand Enchanter Fiona
Codex entry: Here Lies the Abyss Codex entry: Here Lies the Abyss
Codex entry: Hunter's View of the Mage-Templar War Codex entry: Hunter's View of the Mage-Templar War
Codex entry: A Page from a Journal, Edges Scorched Codex entry: A Page from a Journal, Edges Scorched
Codex entry: Rebel Mages Codex entry: Rebel Mages
Codex entry: Red Templar Foot Soldier Codex entry: Red Templar Foot Soldier
Codex entry: Red Templar Guardsman Codex entry: Red Templar Guardsman
Codex entry: Red Templar Knight Codex entry: Red Templar Knight
Codex entry: Stronghold of the Apostate Mages Codex entry: Stronghold of the Apostate Mages

Note texts[]

A Letter Found on a Dead Body (Conscientious Objector) A Letter Found on a Dead Body (Conscientious Objector)
Letter Found on a Noblewoman's Corpse Letter Found on a Noblewoman's Corpse
A Letter in an Empty Home (Blood Brothers) A Letter in an Empty Home (Blood Brothers)
A Letter in an Empty Home (Safeguards Against Looters) A Letter in an Empty Home (Safeguards Against Looters)

Trivia[]

  • David Gaider has indicated that blood magic could have been influencing Fiona and the Rebel Mages to side with the Venatori, although there is directly no evidence in game to support this.[9]

Gallery[]

References[]

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