Unless stated otherwise, all information herein is taken from TWoRJTWoT, Ch. 17.
Among the Seanchan, damane are “leashed ones”-women with the ability to channel who are collared. Damane are leashed with an a'dam, a collar and a bracelet connected by a leash a few feet in length. The collar part is worn by the damane, and the bracelet is worn by the sul'dam, or “leashholder.” Sul’dam are women who have the ability to use the a’dam, but do not have the ability to channel. The damane is fully under the sul’dam’s control. Most damane are the property of the imperial throne, though many are owned by nobles and some commoners may buy one (TGH, Ch. 29).
When Luthair Paendrag arrived in Seanchan, the continent was under constant warfare with many shifting alliances and the Aes Sedai there taking part in these struggles. One of them, Deain, felt she could benefit by allying with him and created the first a'dam, so that he could use the power of the Aes Sedai in battle. She herself became damane several years later, when the first sul'dam were discovered.
In Seanchan, young women are tested for the ability to channel each year, on what is a feastday (TGH, Ch. 46), until they pass the age of manifestation. Once they have shown the ability to channel, they are immediately leashed. However, any female channeler that is captured becomes damane as well. The Seanchan believe that women who can channel are very dangerous, and regard all unleashed Aes Sedai as marath'damane, or “those who must be leashed”. Once taken, their names are struck from the family records and they may even be given a new name, though this is at the discretion of the sul'dam who trains them (TGH, Ch. 40). Occasionally, damane are discovered by the use of forkroot, which can render insensible any woman who is able to channel.
Damane are controlled by sul'dam through the a'dam. A sul'dam has an awareness of all the damane is feeling, and can add to the sensations to inflict pain, or give pleasure to their charge as they choose (TGH, Ch. 45). They also break the spirit of many damane, who are often convinced that they need to be collared as they are too dangerous to be allowed to go free (This passage needs a reference). As there are many more sul'dam than damane, most damane will have many sul'dam controlling their leash (TGH, Ch. 40). Damane can become fiercely loyal to the sul'dam who control them and look to them for support. Damane are regarded as valued slaves, and are seldom killed, even for infractions that a lesser slave would be put to death for, though they are often threatened with mutilation. Such mutilation is rarely carried out as it is seen as a failure on the part of the sul'dam to impose proper discipline (This passage needs a reference) and comfort (This passage needs a reference). Channeling while not linked makes a damane feel sick, the more they channel the sicker they feel, nor can they move the a'dam (TGH, Ch. 42). They are also unable to touch a weapon or anything they consider using as a weapon (TGH, Ch. 42).
The damane are mainly used for weapons, though they also aid in tasks that would be impossible without the One Power, such as the construction of large bridges. Damane who are strong in Earth locate and refine metals and rare ores. Some damane are also used to heal the sick, though only among the upper class. However, their Healing is frequently rejected because of the belief that channelers are not human-it would be like allowing a dog to be your healer. Men who are found to be able to channel are put to death immediately and expunged from all records.
- Main article: Damane Character List