The Aiel War began in 976 NE when the Aiel learned that King Laman of Cairhien had cut down the chora tree Avendoraldera. Four clans invaded the western lands with the intent of killing Laman. The nations of the western lands banded together to fight the Aiel but never defeated them. Laman was finally killed in the Battle of the Shining Walls, also known as the Blood Snow, at Dragonmount late in 978 NE. After his death the Aiel retreated back to the Aiel Waste.

After the Aiel War, the Gray Ajah attempted to hold together the coalition of nations but were unsuccessful.

References (Posssible Spoilers)#

  1. In New Spring
    1. NS,Ch1 - Lan and Bukama spent two years fighting the Aiel in Cairhien, Andor and Tear. During the war 200,000 men fought the Aiel.
    2. NS,Ch2 , NS,Ch3 - As horns sounded announcing the death of King Laman, the Aiel began moving east toward the Spine of the World.
    3. NS,Ch17 - Cadsuane briefly came out of retirement at the beginning of the Aiel War.
    4. NS,Ch25 - Moiraine thinks one of the reasons so many Aes Sedai are about is to tie up loose ends from the Aiel War.
    5. NS,Epilogue - Five hundred men fought under Lan at the Battle of the Shining Walls also known as the Blood Snow. Half died in the battle.
  2. In The Eye of the World
    1. TEotW,Ch6 - Rand learns that his father, Tam, participated in the Aiel War and found him as a newborn infant on Dragonmount.
  3. In The Dragon Reborn
    1. TDR,Ch39 - Elayne recounts how the Aiel War, from their perspective, was simply and execution of King Laman for cutting down Avendoraldera, a sapling of Avendesora.
  4. In The Shadow Rising
    1. TSR,Ch34 - Rhuarc explains some of Rand's visions in the glass columns. The young man giving them water was Cairhien. This led to the gift of Avendoraldera, its cutting by Laman, the Aiel War, and thereby Rand's birth.
  5. In A Crown of Swords
    1. ACoS,Ch19 - After the Aiel War, the Gray Ajah attempted to hold together the coalition of nations formed to fight the Aiel, but it broke apart anyhow.
  6. In The Path of Daggers
    1. TPoD,Ch28 - Daved Hanlon participated in the looting of Cairhien during the Aiel War.
  7. In Crossroads of Twilight
    1. CoT,Ch8 - Gerard Arganda fought at Tar Valon in the Aiel War.

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