‘The Witcher’: Is Tissaia Evil? Is She in League With Vilgefortz?


Tissaia de Vries is one of the most unique characters in the entire storyline of ‘The Witcher’ because her allegiance was never really quite sure. There were times when she was quite harsh with Yennefer and was willing enough to actually see Ciri dead. But there were times when she was quite reasonable, especially when it came to the safety of the people of the Continent. So, does that mean that Tissaia is evil?

There is nothing that supports the idea that Tissaia is evil because she has never done anything out of pure selfishness. Instead, most of the things she did were for the betterment of the different kingdoms in the Continent and to ensure that her beloved Yennefer was safe.

A lot of people think that Tissaia could be evil because she is romantically involved with Vilgefortz, who is known to have done some of the worst things in the storyline of ‘The Witcher.’ But not even Tissaia is aware of what Vilgefortz did in the storyline, as far as we know. So, with that said, let’s look at whether or not Tissaia is evil.

Tissaia’s allegiance explained

Throughout the storyline of ‘The Witcher,’ the only character that has remained constant in Yennefer’s life is Tissaia de Vries, who held a high position in Aretuza and was one of the highest-ranking members in the Brotherhood of Sorcerers. Of course, we know that Tissaia was the one that took Yennefer in after witnessing how badly her family was treating her even though she was born a gifted sorceress.

While Tissaia was harsh toward Yen during the earlier part of her life and when she was still trying to learn the ins and outs of using her inner chaos, we know that she deeply cared for Yen. In fact, Tissaia treated Yen like her own daughter and was willing to do anything to ensure she was safe from harm.

One of the instances that allowed us to see Tissaia’s love for Yen was when she thought she was dead after the Battle of Sodden Hill when Yen used fire magic to defeat the forces of Nilfgaard. The sorcerers were able to capture Cahir, who was one of the commanders of the Nilfgaardian army that attacked Sodden Hill. Tissaia wasn’t shy about torturing Cahir using a magical ability that allowed her to pick his brain in a painful manner, as Cahir’s screams indicated.

tissaia tortures cahir

Of course, despite how harsh she can be, the one thing that was clear about Tissaia was that she could be quite reasonable. She always made sure that the different actions that she and the other mages took were in line with the betterment of the entire Continent because the very purpose of the mages was to act as counsels and advisers to the different kings and queens of the Continent.

In that regard, Tissaia’s allegiance was to the Continent’s peace, which was why she was willing enough to join the fight against the Nilfgaardian Empire during the Battle of Sodden Hill. She knew that Nilfgaard wasn’t supposed to invade the Continent’s Northern kingdoms, which was why she was willing enough to fight the Nilfgaardian army.


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Of course, there were also instances wherein Tissaia said things that may not exactly be good. In season 2, she once said that Ciri was better off dead because her existence was one of the reasons why the different kingdoms of the Continent were at war, as they all wanted to be the first to gain custody over her. And she wanted Ciri dead because she believed it was for the good of the Continent, as Nilfgaard was obsessed with finding the girl.

Nevertheless, we know that Tissaia is somewhat of a neutral character. She is willing to do whatever it takes to ensure that the Continent is peaceful and that the different kingdoms coexist. And that means that killing people isn’t above her as long as she understood that doing so was for the good of everyone, including the mages of the Continent. 

Will Tissaia join Vilgefortz?

One of the reasons why some fans believe that Tissaia could be evil is the fact that she is romantically involved with Vilgefortz in ‘The Witcher.’ Of course, Vilgefortz wasn’t an evil man when we first met him. But Geralt and Yen eventually figured out that he was the one who was controlling Rience, who we know is the fire mage that’s been pursuing Ciri. He was also the one who had been tampering with the portals of the mages and using illusions against Yen.

tissaia and vilgefortz

Because Tissaia is romantically involved with Vilgefortz, some fans think she has always been in league with him. Or, at the very least, Tissaia might have been privy to what Vilgefortz has been doing. So, will Tissaia join Vilgefortz?

In the book, one of the things that we know is that Tissaia has always tried to promote the neutrality of the sorcerers. She never wanted the mages to take sides during the wars between the different kingdoms. However, things changed during the coup in Aretuza after she went to bed following their evening banquet.


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What happened was that there was a coup involving the Northern supporters and some of the Nilfgaardians. During that time, some of the Redanians attacked, which was when Tissaia became emotional and used lightning and fire magic against them.

After that, she found Triss carrying a heavily wounded Geralt, and that was when she used a portal to teleport them away from Aretuza. Tissaia’s final act was committing suicide as she failed to uphold her neutrality during the mess between the Northerners and the Nilfgaardians.

In that regard, she never joined Vilgefortz in the book, as she would rather die than do things against her beliefs. But things could change in the live-action version of ‘The Witcher’ because we all know that the showrunner introduced plenty of changes to make the series different from the source material.

And that means that there’s a good chance that Tissaia might join Vilgefortz or have been behind all the different things he has been doing. 

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