The Citadel: Concordance

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3. The North
  • In winter, snows can fall forty feet deep (I: 3)
  • Late summer snows are not unusual. However, they tend to be brief and not particularly damaging to agriculture (I: 34. SSM: 1)
  • It is said that it grows so cold in the north that a man's laughter freezes in his throat and chokes him to death (I: 39)
  • In the south, the northmen are said to be made all of ice and melt in the southron heat (I: 162)
  • Rain falls cold and hard, and sometimes turns into hail that can send men running for cover and ruin crops, even during a summer (I: 238)
  • Bronze and iron were the metals of the north, strong and dark to fight the cold (II: 79)
  • Once the autumn is declared by the maesters, the lords of the North store away a part of the grain they have harvested. How much is a matter of choice; between one fifth and one fourth seems prudent, however (II: 184)
  • The Ice Dragon (its name may be different outside of the North) is a constellation used to help mark direction, because the blue star in the rider's eye points the way north (II: 381)
  • Even in the deep of the wolfswood there are foresters, crofters, and hunters (III: 105)
  • The northmen have long memories. A lord who does not seek his rightful vengeance threatens to have his own men turn on him (III: 229)
  • It's said a maiden girl could walk the kingsroad in her name-day gown and still go unmolested, and travelers could find fire, bread, and salt at many an inn and holdfast (III: 276)
  • Heraldry in the North is significantly simpler and more basic than that in the South, showing the differing amounts of influence that chivalry has had there (SSM: 1)
  • In the North, food is smoked, salted, and otherwise preserved ahead of winter. Lords keep "glass gardens" to try and supply their own castles even in winter. Coastal communities depend on fish, although even in winter ice fishing is common on the rivers and Long Lake. Poor harvests before winter will mean famine, however. (SSM: 1)
  • Houses descended of the First Men tend to have short, simple, descriptive names (SSM: 1)
  • The North and the Vale are approximately on par when it comes to military strength. However, the North's population is spread over a much greater area, and harvests are even more important when colder seasons draw near (SSM: 1, 2)
3.1. Geography (South of the Wall)
  • The North is nearly as large as the other six kingdoms put together (I: 33)
  • The North is not heavily populated, largely bogs and fields and forests, with few large inns to be found even on the kingsroad (I: 33)
  • The barrows of the First Men are spread throughout the North (I: 93)
  • The kingsroad past Winterfell is little more than a forest track (I: 99)
  • To the west of the kingsroad, as it goes north after passing Winterfell, the land is mostly flint hills and often capped with watchtowers. The land to the east is lower, rolling plains. Stone bridges span swift, narrow rivers (I: 99)
  • Farms extend in rings from holdfasts (I: 99)
  • There are rude inns to be found along the kingsroad (I: 99)
  • Three days from Winterfell the land grows more and more mountainous, heavily forested, and little populated. Within the fifth day of riding north of Winterfell, the hills have given way to mountains (I: 99)
  • The large forest north and west of Winterfell is the wolfswood (I: 100)
  • A wooden holdfast sits on the edge of the wolfswood (I: 100)
  • Nights are well below freezing further north of Winterfell, even in the late summer (I: 101)
  • Eighteen days ride north from Winterfell stands an abandoned holdfast (I: 106)
  • The White Knife River leads to White Harbor and the sea (I: 115)
  • The causeway cutting through the Neck is very narrow (I: 118)
  • The Neck is a vast boggy swamp, with pools of mud and quicksand, and flowers unique to the region (I: 118)
  • Mole's Town is a little village half a league south of Wall, on the kingsroad (I: 176)
  • It is rare to find a grove of two or three weirwoods together (I: 434)
  • Mole's Town is bigger than it seems, but three-quarters of it is underground tunnels and damp warm cellars (I: 648)
  • Mole's Town's whorehouse is marked by a wooden shack no larger than a privy with a red lantern hung outside (I: 648)
  • It takes about a fortnight to sail from Lannisport to Bear Island (II: 146)
  • A barge can be taken some of the way from White Harbor to Winterfell (II: 179)
  • Cerwyn Castle lies half a day's ride from Winterfell (II: 190)
  • The Stony Shore is on the western coast. Various fishing villages line it (II: 290)
  • Sea Dragon Point is on the western coast, and must be rounded by sea before one can get to the tidal flats north of Deepwood Motte (II: 290)
  • Saltspear is the long, narrow bay west of the Neck. It connects to the Fever River, whose headwaters are less than twenty miles from Moat Cailin (II: 290)
  • The Stony Shore is south of Deepwood Motte, the villages on it near to Torrhen's Square (II: 395)
  • There are people (and perhaps lords) who live deep inside the wolfswood (II: 487)
  • The edge of the forest to the west of Winterfell has a stony ground (II: 531)
  • Northwest of Winterfell is the heart of the wolfswood (II: 531)
  • Deepwood Motte is north by northwest of Winterfell on the other side of the wolfswood (II: 531)
  • Sentinels and soldier pines grow thick in the wolfswood, making it dark and gloomy before they give way to oaks and hawthorns amongst stony hills. The ground is uneven (II: 531)
  • There are quarries in the wolfswood (II: 532)
  • There is a muddy brook two or three hours north by northwest of Winterfell (II: 532)
  • There's an old mill sitting alone on the Acorn Water. There are a dozen villages and holdfasts arrayed in the same general area (II: 535)
  • Skagos is a large island in the Bay of Seals. Because of its remoteness, it has little contact with the mainland and although in theory subject to the Starks, in practice its lords go their own way (II: 544. SSM: 1)
  • Brandon's Gift and the New Gift stretch from the Wall to fifty leagues south of it (III: 83, 452, 453)
  • Even in the deep of the wolfswood there are foresters, crofters, and hunters (III: 105)
  • There are no roads through the twisted mountain valleys in the northern part of the North past the wolfswood. Beneath the grey stone peaks lay still blue lakes, long and deep and narrow, and there are endless piney woods (III: 274)
  • The foothills of the northern mountains are largely of flint (III: 274)
  • Conifers such as pine and sentinel trees become increasingly common as one goes north from the wolfswood, until they're the only trees (III: 274)
  • The high glens in the mountains rarely run straight north and south (III: 275)
  • The mountain streams are small and icy, and the game is scarcer (III: 275)
  • People live near and in the mountains. The Umbers are mostly east of the kingsroad, but they graze their sheep in the high meadows in the summer. Of the mountain clans, there are Wulls west of the mountains along the Bay of Ice, Harclays in the southern hills, and Knotts, Liddles, Norreys, and even some Flints up in the high places (III: 275, 573. SSM: 1)
  • Queenscrown is an old village, abandoned for some years because of increasing problems with wildling raiders, with a stout holdfast on an island in a lake south of the village where oak trees grow thick along the shore, and apple trees grow as well near the inn. It lies within the New Gift (III: 452, 453, 457, 468)
  • The land between Queenscrown and the Wall is largely grassland: fallow fields and low rolling hills, high meadows and lowland bogs (III: 452, 468)
  • The New Gift belongs to the Night's Watch, as does Brandon's Gift which lies north of it. It's said that Brandon the Builder gave all the land south of the Wall to the black brothers, to a distance of twenty-five leagues, for their sustenance and support, but some maesters say that it was some other Brandon, not the Builder (III: 452, 453)
  • Thousands of years after the creation of Brandon's gift, Good Queen Alysanne visited the Wall on her dragon Silverwing, and she thought the Night's Watch was so brave that she had the Old King double the size of their lands to fifty leagues, making the New Gift (III: 453)
  • Wildling raids have increased over the last years as the Watch has grown weaker, and so the places nearest the Wall have been raided so often that people have moved further south into the mountains or into the Umber lands east of the kingsroad (III: 453)
  • At Queenscrown a stone causeway three feet wide, hidden under the water, provides a way to reach the holdfast in the lake. Its path twists and turns so as not to be easily followed, and so that enemies will be exposed to arrows for a longer time (III: 453, 454, 468)
  • Good Queen Alysanne slept in the holdfast at Queenscrown, so the folk of the village painted the holdfast's merlons gold in her honor (III: 454, 468)
  • The holdfast at Queenscrown is closed by a heavy oak door guarding a small strongroom where steps leading up the tower and down into the undervault are guarded by iron gates. A small iron grate set into the ceiling serves as a murder holes. The tower has five floors (III: 454, 455, 468)
  • The second story of the holdfast is a maze of dark cells with no windows, the third story has arrow slits, the fourth has proper windows, and the fifth is a big round chamber with arched doors on three sides opening onto small stone balconies. The fourth side is a privy chamber perched above a sewer chute that drops straight into the lake (III: 455)
  • There are trees in the Neck that stand twice as a tall as a five story tower (III: 455)
  • South of Queenscrown are the foothills and their mountains, but in all other directions are the rolling plains of the New Gift (III: 455, 456, 468)
  • There are ancient and abandoned towerhouses throughout the New Gift, remnants of the small lords who had once resided there (III: 460)
  • A dozen streams drain the wetwood of the Neck, all shallow, silty, and uncharted. They cannot even be called rivers, as the channels are always drifting and changing. There are endless sandbars, deadfalls, and tangles of rotting trees (III: 525)
  • There are ways through the Neck that are not on any map, known only to the crannogmen, such as narrow trails between the bogs and wet roads through the reeds that only boats can follow (III: 526)
  • Weatherback Ridge is near to Castle Black and is within view of the kingsroad. A beacon burning there can be seen from the castle (III: 553)
  • Past Skagos is the Shivering Sea (III: 608)
  • There are no weirwoods on the stony island in the lake at Queenscrown (III: 626)
  • The shore of the Bay of Seals is wooded, and snarled by rocks and whirlpools (IV: 216)
  • The journey by galley from Eastwatch to Braavos is said to be a long one (IV: 217)
  • The waters of the narrow sea beyond Skagos are rough in the autumn (IV: 217)
  • Skagos sits at the mouth of the Bay of Seals, mountainous and forbidding, with the savage people who live there residing in caves or grim mountain fastnesses (IV: 220)
  • The isle of Skane, near to Skagos, is uninhabited after men from Skagos allegedly attacked, killing and then eating all those they found there (IV: 220)
  • The currents around Skagos are treacherous (IV: 220-221)
  • The region of Sea Dragon Point and the Stony Shore of the North are ten times larger than all the Iron Isles combined. It is a thinly populated area (IV: 265)
  • The autumn storms between Skagos and Braavos can be fierce, and sometimes bring a terrible cold that can freeze ropes and sails (IV: 380)
  • The journey from Dorne to the North is a long one, taking months (SSM: 1)
3.1.1. Moat Cailin
  • Moat Cailin commands the causeway through the Neck. Great basalt stones as large as cottages once made up a curtain wall as high as that of Winterfell's. The wooden keep was rotted away a thousand years past. Only three of the original twenty towers the singers claim remain of the great stronghold of the First Men (I: 498)
  • Moat Cailin's Gatehouse Tower is sound and boasts a few feet of standing wall to either side (I: 498)
  • The Drunkard's Tower in the bog where the south and west walls had once met, leans heavily (I: 498)
  • The tall, slender Children's Tower has lost half its crown (I: 498)
  • All three towers are green with moss, and a tree was growing out from between the stones on the north side of the Gatehouse Tower (I: 499)
  • Moat Cailin is surrounded by quicksands and suckholes and is teeming with snakes. An army would have to wade through waist-deep muck and a moat full of lizard-lions, and then scale walls slippery with moss while archers fired from the other towers (I: 499)
  • Saltspear is the long, narrow bay west of the Neck. It connects to the Fever River, whose headwaters are less than twenty miles from Moat Cailin (II: 290)
  • It seems that Moat Cailin has stood for some 10,000 years (II: 674)
  • A dozen streams drain the wetwood of the Neck, all shallow, silty, and uncharted. They cannot even be called rivers, as the channels are always drifting and changing. There are endless sandbars, deadfalls, and tangles of rotting trees (III: 525)
  • There are ways through the Neck that are not on any map, known only to the crannogmen, such as narrow trails between the bogs and wet roads through the reeds that only boats can follow (III: 526)
3.1.2. Trade and Resources
  • Wool is one important trade item from the North (II: 200)
  • There are silversmiths at White Harbor (III: 837)
3.2. The Starks
  • The Valyrian steel greatsword of the Starks, Ice, is four hundred years old. It is named after the sword of the Kings of the North, who ruled in the Age of Heroes to the time of Aegon (I: 12, 20, etc.)
  • The Starks are Wardens of the North (I: 12)
  • The blood of the First Men flows in the veins of the Starks (I: 14, etc.)
  • The Starks are not as other men when it comes to their illegitimate children. They raise their bastards among their children and call them son or daughter openly (I: 55)
  • The Starks hold tournaments in disdain for being useless pageantry (I: 242)
  • Winterfell has hosted harvest festivities for centuries (II: 237)
  • "May your winters be short and your summers bountiful," is a common response to the swearing of oaths (II: 241)
  • The greatsword Ice is nearly as tall as a man (II: 597)
  • The role of the wardens are to defend their assigned regions from invaders, and are in theory the supreme generals of their area so as to avoid disunity (SSM: 1)
3.2.1. Winterfell
  • There is a holdfast amongst the hills a few hours from Winterfell, north of a bridge and river (I: 11, 14)
  • The castle has a kennel (I: 17)
  • The godswood of Winterfell is dark, three acres of old forest untouched for 10,000 years, which the castle was raised around. There are sentinel trees, oaks, ironwoods, hawthorns, ash, and soldier pines in it(I: 18. II: 520)
  • The heart tree of Winterfell has a long and melancholy face, with deep-cut eyes of dried sap, which seem oddly watchful. It sits beside a dark pool (I: 19)
  • Legend has it that Brandon the Builder laid the first stone of Winterfell (I: 19)
  • The walls of Winterfell are granite (I: 19)
  • The crypt of Winterfell is deep under the earth, entered by narrow and winding steps The crypt is always cold (I: 33, 34)
  • The crypt is long and narrow, with pillars moving two by two along its length. Between pillars stand the sepulchres of the Starks of Winterfell, the likenesses of the dead seated on thrones, iron swords set before them to keep the restless spirits from wandering and snarling direwolves at their feet (I: 34, 35, etc.)
  • The Great Hall of Winterfell has a large fireplace (I: 41)
  • A raised platform at one end of the hall seats the Starks and honored guests (I: 41)
  • Tables and benches seat the garrison, servants, and other folk of the castle (I: 41, 43)
  • Dogs are allowed in the Great Hall even during feasting of royalty, but they are kept to the far end (I: 43)
  • The door of the Great Hall opens up on the castle yard. (I: 46)
  • The Great Hall is within the inner walls of Winterfell (I: 46)
  • The Lady of Winterfell's chambers in the Great Keep are the warmest in all the castle. In later summer, fires are rarely needed to heat it.(I: 49)
  • Winterfell had been built over natural hot springs. The water is piped through walls and chambers to heat them, turning the glass gardens into places of moist warmth. (I: 49)
  • Open pools smoke in a dozen small courtyards (I: 49)
  • The windows in the Great Keep are high and narrow (I: 49)
  • There is a covered bridge with a window that connects the Great Keep to the armory. The window overlooks the yard where weapons practice is done (I: 60)
  • There is a tall sentinel tree growing next to the armory wall, inside the godswood. Branches overhang the armory, roof (I: 66)
  • Winterfell has many tunnels (I: 66)
  • Over the centuries, Winterfell has grown into a sprawling complex. Some of the old halls slant up and down (I: 66)
  • Rainworn gargoyles decorate the First Keep (I: 66)
  • There are hills and valleys beneath Winterfell. The builders never levelled the ground (I: 66)
  • A covered bridge leads from the fourth floor of the bell tower to the second floor of the rookery (I: 66)
  • One can get inside of the inner wall by the south gate, climb three floors and run around Winterfell through a narrow tunnel in the stone, to exit on the ground level at the north gate (I: 67)
  • The inner wall is 100 feet high and the outer is 80 feet high. Between them is a wide moat (I: 67. II: 528)
  • There are crows nests atop the broken tower (I: 67)
  • Small sparrows nest in the cracks between stones (I: 68)
  • Owls sleep in the dusty loft above the old armory (I: 68)
  • The broken tower had been the tallest tower in Winterfell, a wall tower. Some 140 years past, it had been hit by lighting and was set afire. The upper two-thirds of the tower collapsed, and no one bothered to rebuild (I: 68)
  • The mortar that held the stones of the tower has dried and crumbled away, so that the stones are loose (I: 68)
  • One can leap from the armory roof to the roof of the guard hall, and run across to come up to the blind side of the First Keep (I: 68)
  • The First Keep is the oldest part of the castle, a squat and round fortress that is taller than it seems (I: 68)
  • The broken tower leans very closely to the First Keep's north side, near enough that a boy can stretch and grab a hold of it to climb the further ten feet necessary to reach the top (I: 68)
  • Winterfell may have the only complete copy of Ayrmidon's Engines of War (I: 72)
  • The library of Winterfell has its own tower. There are exterior stone steps which corkscrew down the tower's length (I: 73)
  • The library of Winterfell contains a volume on the properties of dragons (I: 101)
  • The throne of the Lord of Winterfell is cold stone, polished smooth, with carved heads of direwolves snarling at the ends of massive arms. The seat is very large (I: 205)
  • Beyond the castle lies the market square and the village of small neat houses of wood and undressed stone with chimneys leading up from wood-burning fireplaces (I: 333)
  • Many of the houses are empty in the summer, only some one in five occupied. As summer ends and winter grows stronger, farmers leave their farms and distant holdfasts to take up residence (I: 333)
  • The Smoking Log is the name of the village's alehouse (I: 333)
  • There are guard turrets on the outer wall (I: 475)
  • A series of chisel-cut handholds make a ladder in the stone of guard turret's inner wall (I: 477)
  • There is a moat between the inner and outer walls (I: 477. II: 489)
  • Across the godswood from the heart tree, beneath the windows of the Guest House, an underground hot spring feeds three small pools. The wall that looms above them is thick with moss (I: 478)
  • Beneath the First Keep is an ancient lichyard, headstones covered with pale lichen, where the Kings of Winter laid their faithful servants (I: 481)
  • The underground crypts of Winterfell are cavernous, longer than the complex above ground, and there are levels underneath the chiefly used one where the older kings were entombed (I: 613)
  • Ravens reside in the rookery above the maester's tower (I: 615)
  • The panes of glass in the windows of the towers and halls are diamond-shaped (II: 52)
  • The pool beneath the heart tree in the godswood is very deep (II: 187)
  • The doors into the Great Hall are wide and made of oak and iron (II: 237)
  • The Great Hall can hold eight long rows of trestle tables, four to each side of the central aisle (II: 237)
  • Winterfell has hosted harvest festivities for centuries (II: 237)
  • There is an exit in the rear of the Great Hall, which leads to a dimly lit gallery (II: 243)
  • The maester's turret is below the rookery (II: 323)
  • There is an iron, barred gate that opens into the godswood. The spaces between bars are barely large enough to fit a hand through (II: 486)
  • There is flat stone under the dirt which the barred gate is above, so that it cannot be dug under (II: 486)
  • There are other entrances into the godswood, although those have wooden doors rather than gates (II: 486)
  • There is a Guards Hall (presumably barracks) (II: 488)
  • There is a moat around Winterfell (II: 489)
  • The Bell Tower and glass gardens can be seen from the lord's chambers (II: 525-526, 530)
  • There is a well in Winterfell's yard (II: 527)
  • The Hunter's Gate is sited close to the kennels and kitchens. It opens directly on the fields and forests outside of Winterfell, allowing riders to come and go without having to cross through the winter town, so it is favored by hunting parties (II: 527)
  • The snug room from which the drawbridge is raised or lowered is in the gatehouse (II: 527)
  • The high inner walls are crenelated. Many watch turrets (more than thirty) line them (II: 528)
  • Winterfell has a brewhouse (II: 529)
  • The Great Hall of Winterfell can seat 500 people (II: 587)
  • There are iron spikes atop of the gatehouse, probably put in place to display the heads of criminals and traitors (II: 592)
  • Wine is kept in the castle vaults (II: 675)
  • The old inner ward is an artifact from when Winterfell was smaller. Archery butts can be found there (II: 676)
  • The old broken wall tower stands behind the old inner ward of Winterfell (II: 676)
  • There is a well in the center of the winter town's market square (II: 678)
  • The stable has a thatched roof and sits along the inside of the west wall (II: 680. III: 902)
  • The twisting stone stair that leads up to ground level from the crypts of Winterfell also lead further down to where vaults hold more ancient kings (II: 703)
  • The door to the crypts is made of old, heavy ironwood which lays at a slant to the ground. Only one person can approach it at a time (II: 704)
  • The First Keep shadows the entrance to the crypts (II: 704)
  • The First Keep has not been used in hundreds of years (II: 705)
  • The panes of the glass gardens are green and yellow (II: 705)
  • The Library Tower has hot water running through its walls (II: 705)
  • The Bell Tower has a turret for the maester at Winterfell (II: 705)
  • The East Gate exits to the King's Gate (II: 707)
  • An iron portcullis blocks off the Hunter's Gate (II: 708)
  • In legend, Brandon the Builder was said to have had the help of giants in raising Winterfell (III: 461)
  • The armory is a square building while the kitchen is round (III: 902)
  • Winterfell's gatehouse is made of two huge bulwarks, crenellations all along the top, flanking an arched gate (III: 903)
3.2.2. Ancestors and History
  • The first lords of Winterfell had been hard men (I: 34)
  • There was a King of the North named Jon Stark who drove out sea raiders from the east and built the castle at White Harbor (I: 613)
  • The son of Jon Stark, Rickard Stark, took the Neck from the Marsh King and married his daughter (I: 613)
  • King Theon Stark was named the 'Hungry Wolf' because he was constantly at war (I: 613)
  • Brandon the Shipwright loved the sea. His tomb is empty, as he tried to sail west across the Sunset Sea and never returned. He never succeeded in his crossing (I: 613. SSM: 1)
  • His son Brandon the Burner was named so for torching all of his father's ships in grief (I: 613)
  • King Rodrik Stark won Bear Island in a wrestling match and gave it to the Mormonts, or so it's said (I: 613)
  • The last King of the North, who bent the knee to Aegon the Conqueror, was Torrhen Stark (I: 613)
  • Cregan Stark once fought Prince Aemon the Dragonknight, who named him the finest swordsman he had ever faced (I: 613)
  • The Starks trace their ancestry from Brandon the Builder (I: 678)
  • A book kept in Castle Black on the Wall, written by a ranger named Redwyn in the time of King Dorren Stark, which tells of fighting giants and trading with the Children of the Forest (II: 70)
  • The crown of the Kings of Winter had been yielded up to Aegon the Conqueror when Torrhen Stark bent the knee. What became of the crown no one knew. It was an open circlet of hammered bronze incised with the runes of the First Men, surmounted by nine black iron spikes wrought as longswords (II: 79)
  • The North has had no strength at sea for hundreds of years, ever since Brandon the Burner put his father's ships to the torch (II: 183)
  • Winterfell has hosted harvest festivities for centuries (II: 237)
  • It has been hundreds and thousands of years since the crannogmen swore their oaths of fealty to the Starks (II: 241)
  • All the wildling hosts that have attacked southwards have broken their strength on the Wall or by the power of Winterfell beyond (II: 276)
  • A number of Starks had been slain, flayed, and worn as cloaks in the past before the Boltons had bent the knee (II: 530)
  • The Boltons bent the knee to Winterfell a thousand years ago (II: 530)
  • Bael the Bard lived in the time of a Lord Brandon Stark (known to the wildlings as Brandon the Daughterless), who had no other children save a daughter. The story has it that Bael seduced the daughter, who gave birth to a bastard son who eventually inherited Winterfell (II: 544-545)
  • The stories say that Bael was slain by his bastard son, the young Lord Stark, because he refused to fight his own blood. Because of the kinslaying, the Starks were cursed; the story goes that Lord Stark's mother killed herself when she saw Bael's head upon Lord Stark's spear, and Lord Stark himself did not long outlive her when one of the Bolton lords skinned him (II: 545)
  • The Starks have been a noble, unbroken line for some 8,000 years (II: 552)
  • There's a listing of the lords of Winterfell in their tombs that seems to be roughly chronological, starting from Lord Rickard Stark and going back. It goes: Lord Rickard Stark, Lord Edwyle, Lord Willam and his brother Artos the Implacable, Lord Donner, Lord Beron, Lord Rodwell, one-eyed Lord Jonnel, Lord Barth, Lord Brandon, and Lord Cregan who fought Aemon the Dragonknight (II: 702)
  • There are more Kings of North mentioned (in no clear ordering, although it seems it's going from newer to older): Edwyn the Spring King, Jorah and Jonos, Brandon the Bad, Walton the Moon King, Edderion the Bridegroom, Eyron, Benjen the Sweet and Benjen the Bitter, and King Edrick Snowbeard. Some of them had done terrible things, but their tales are known (II: 703)
  • It's said that Torrhen, the King Who Knelt, offered his submission to Aegon the Conqueror on the south bank of the Red Fork in the riverlands, at the place where the river bends to flow southeastwards (III: 121)
  • The Karstarks trace their descent to Karlon Stark, a younger son of Winterfell who had put down a rebel lord a thousand years ago, and been granted lands for his valor. The castle he built had been named Karl's Hold, but over the centuries it became Karhold and the Karhold Starks became the Karstarks (III: 231, 232)
  • Lord Eddard's maternal grandmother was a Flint of the mountains. She died before he was born (III: 275, 276)
  • When Gendel and Gorne, the brother Kings-beyond-the-Wall, managed to pass the Wall some 3,000 years ago, they were met by the force of the King in the North. He was slain by Gorne, but his son took up his crown and banner again and then cut down Gorne (III: 300)
  • The New Gift belongs to the Night's Watch, as does Brandon's Gift which lies north of it. It's said that Brandon the Builder gave all the land south of the Wall to the black brothers, to a distance of twenty-five leagues, for their sustenance and support, but some maesters say that it was some other Brandon, not the Builder (III: 452, 453)
  • In legend, Brandon the Builder was said to have had the help of giants in raising the Wall (III: 461)
  • When King Jaehaerys the Concilliator came to Winterfell in the first years of his reign, he brought his queen, six dragons, and half his court. He had matters to discuss with his Warden of the North, however, and Queen Alysanne grew bored and took her dragon Silverwing northwards for a time. (III: 468)
  • Lord Rickard had no siblings, but his father had a sister who married a younger son of Lord Raymar Royce, of the junior branch. They had three daughters, all of whom wed Vale lordlings, a Waynwood and a Corbray among them, and perhaps a Templeton (III: 520, 521)
  • 600 years ago, the commanders of the Night's Watch castles of Snowgate and the Nightfort went to war against one another and joined forces to murder their Lord Commander when he tried to stop them. The Stark in Winterfell had to take a hand, and their heads (III: 612)
  • It's said that the Stark in Winterfell and Joramun of the wildlings joined forces against the Night's King, the thirteenth Lord Commander of the Night's Watch. He was defeated and his name and all records of him were destroyed (III: 629, 630)
  • Some say the Night's King was a Bolton, or a Magnar out of Skagos, others say he was an Umber, Flint, or Norrey. Others still say he was a Woodfoot, who ruled Bear Island before the ironmen came, but others still say he was a Stark who was brother to the man who brought him down (III: 630)
  • Tales have it that the heads of giants have been mounted on the walls of Winterfell in the past (III: 906)
  • A hundred years ago, Skagos rose in a rebellion that lasted years. Before it was put down, a Lord of Winterfell and hundreds of his swords were killed (IV: 220)
  • Four hundred years before the Conquest, Osric Stark was elected Lord Commander at the age of ten, and served for sixty years. He is one of four Lord Commanders known to have been elected younger than sixteen. All of them were sons, brothers, or bastards of the Kings of the North (IV: 79-80)
  • The reaving of the ironborn under Lord Dagon led Beron Stark to begin gathering swords so he could drive the ironmen from his shores (TMK: 664)
  • As a youth, Eddard Stark would have occasionally visited the North or travelled outside of the Vale with Jon Arryn. When he reached his majority, his stays in the North were more frequent, but he would have visited the Vale often as it had become a second home to him, and Jon Arryn a second father (SSM: 1)
  • Benjen Stark joined the Night's Watch shortly after Lord Eddard had returned to Winterfell and Lady Catelyn had taken up residence with the infant Robb (SSM: 1)
  • There may be offshoots and branches of the Stark family in the North, most likely in White Harbor and Barrowton (SSM: 1)
  • Roughly around 210, House Stark was in a difficult situation, with the current lord of the house slowly succumbing to wounds he received fighting the ironborn. Lady Stark and four Stark widows struggled over who would succeed him; these women would be known as the She-Wolves. There were a number of potential heirs, with some ten Stark children about (SSM: 1, 2, 3)
3.2.3. Bannerhouses
  • House Ryswell of the Rills (I: 354. IV: 728. SSM: 1)
  • House Dustin (I: 354. SSM: 1)
  • House Hornwood (I: 476)
  • House Cerwyn of Castle Cerwyn (I: 476. II: 573)
  • By the time 12,000 men are gathered, there are perhaps 3,000 armored and mounted lances, of which 3-400 are knights (I: 476)
  • 18,000 men, among them hedge knights, sellswords, and freeriders, march south at the gathering of the northern banners. Another fifteen hundred are brought by the Manderlys (I: 497, 502)
  • Any one of the lords bannermen to the Starks commands more swords than can be found on the Wall (I: 653)
  • House Flint of Widow's Watch (I: 679. II: 190)
  • The lands of the Boltons and the Hornwoods are adjoined (II: 186)
  • House Locke of Oldcastle (II: 190, 722)
  • The Cerwyn castle and lands lie half a day's ride from Winterfell (II: 190)
  • The Hornwood lands are forested (II: 384)
  • Even with more than 20,000 northmen gone away, more than 2,000 men can still be mustered in the north, and that without several lords unrepresented (II: 672, 679)
  • House Magnar, lords on Skagos. Magnar means lord in the Old Tongue (III: 80, 550)
  • The Wulls are west of the mountains along the Bay of Ice (III: 275)
  • The Harclays are south of the mountains in the foothills (III: 275)
  • The Knotts, Liddles, Norreys, and even some Flints live in the high places in the mountains (III: 275)
  • Lord Wull is something of a proper nobleman, but he is known chiefly as the Wull. The Knott, the Norrey, and the Liddle are the same, called lords in Winterfell but not named lords by their own folk (III: 276)
  • House Stout, petty lords of Barrowton (III: 548, 567. IV: 728)
  • House Burley has their fastness in the mountains, just as the other mountain clans (III: 566, 615)
  • House Condon, who may be in the service of the Cerwyns (III: 567)
  • Lord Commander Rodrik Flint thought to make himself King-beyond-the-Wall (III: 612)
  • Barrowton and the Rills are castles (III: 615)
  • Lord Ryswell's castle is in or near the barrowlands (III: 628)
  • Some say that the Night's King was a Magnar, Flint, or Norrey (III: 630)
  • The men of Skagos call themselves the stoneborn, but other Northmen call them Skaggs (IV: 220)
  • The lords of the island of Skagos have little contact with the mainland and, although in theory subject to the Starks, in practice they go largely their own way (SSM: 1)
  • Some of the mountain families have keeps and fastnesses large enough to be called castles, though they would be small and rude by comparison to the castles of the south (SSM: 1)
  • The North and the Vale are approximately on par when it comes to military strength. However, the North's population is spread over a much greater area, and harvests are even more important when colder seasons draw near (SSM: 1)
3.2.3.1. The Manderlys of White Harbor
  • The Manderlys follow the Seven (I: 497)
  • The Manderlys are able to bring nearly fifteen hundred men to the gathering of Northern banners; twenty-odd knights with as many squires, two hundred lances, swordsmen, and freeriders, and the rest foot armed with spears, pikes, and tridents (I: 497)
  • The castle at White Harbor was raised by King Jon Stark after he drove out sea raiders from the east (I: 613)
  • A barge can be taken some of the way from White Harbor to Winterfell (II: 179)
  • Fish and other seafood are shipped in casks filled with salt and seaweed (II: 238)
  • White Harbor's fishing is very good (II: 238)
  • The Manderlys can pack a dozen barges with knights, warhorses, soldiers, and siege engines (II: 589)
  • King's Landing is many times larger than White Harbor (III: 694)
  • There are silversmiths at White Harbor (III: 837)
  • The Manderlys were driven from the banks of the the Mander, the great river of the Reach, a thousand years ago. It is suggested that the river takes its name from the family, rather than the other way around (TSS: 128)
  • House Manderly is heavily into the concept of chivalry. As the major port in the north, they have the most contact and exchange with the south and have more of a mixed population (SSM: 1)
  • White Harbor is one of the five cities of Westeros. It is about the same size as Gulltown, but is much smaller than Lannisport and very much smaller than King's Landing or Oldtown (SSM: 1)
3.2.3.2. The Boltons of the Dreadfort
  • It is said that the Boltons hang the skins of their enemies in the Dreadfort (I: 480)
  • The lands of the Hornwoods and the Boltons are next to each other (II: 186)
  • The Boltons have a saying: "A naked man has few secrets, but a flayed man has none" (II: 530)
  • In ages past, certain lords of the Dreadfort had gone so far as to cloak themselves in the skins of their enemies (II: 530)
  • A number of Starks had been slain, flayed, and worn as cloaks in the past before the Boltons had bent the knee (II: 530)
  • The Boltons bent the knee to Winterfell a thousand years ago (II: 530)
  • Even with a force of men following their lord in the south, the Bolton garrison at the Dreadfort numbers 600 men (II: 679)
  • Some say the Night's King was a Bolton (III: 630)
3.2.3.3. The Karstarks of Karhold
  • The Karstarks are able to bring nearly two thousand foot and three hundred horse to the gathering of the northern banners (I: 474)
  • The Karstarks are said to have Stark blood in them from hundreds of years in the past (I: 474)
  • The Karstarks do not look like Starks. The are big, fierce men who often wear thick beards and their hair loose past their shoulders. Their cloaks are made of the pelts of bear and seal and wolf (I: 475)
  • Karstark men-at-arms wears black iron halfhelms and black woolen cloaks patterned with the white sunburst of the house (I: 477)
  • Karhold is a strong castle (III: 108)
  • The Karstarks and the men about their lands tend to be big men with thick beards and long hair (III: 226)
  • The mounted strength of Karhold amounts to some three hundred riders and twice as many mounts (III: 228)
  • Lord Rickard Karstark stood with Lord Eddard Stark on the Trident (III: 231)
  • The Karstarks trace their descent to Karlon Stark, a younger son of Winterfell who had put down a rebel lord a thousand years ago, and been granted lands for his valor. The castle he built had been named Karl's Hold, but over the centuries it became Karhold and the Karhold Starks became the Karstarks (III: 231, 232)
3.2.3.4. The Mormonts of Bear Island
  • While Jeor and Jorah Mormont seem to follow the Faith, Jeor's father seems to have followed the old gods (I: 30, 431. II: 151)
  • The Mormonts are an old house, proud and honorable (I: 93)
  • Bear Island is poor in resources (I: 93)
  • There are no male heirs to Bear Island, so Maege Mormont rules and her daughter stands to inherit (I: 173)
  • The Mormonts have handed the Valyrian steel bastard sword Longclaw from father to son for five centuries. Its original pommel was a silver bear's head, so worn it was all but indistinguishable (I: 547, 548)
  • King Rodrik Stark won Bear Island in a wrestling match and gave it to the Mormonts, or so it's said (I: 613)
  • Bear Island was once conquered by the Iron Kings of the Iron Islands, but over the centuries it was lost to them (I: 688)
  • Bear Island is remote, but beautiful with its ancient trees, flowering thorn bushes, and creeks (II: 145)
  • The hall on Bear Island is made of huge logs, surrounded by an earthen palisade (II: 145)
  • Aside from a few crofters, the people of the island live along the coasts and fish the seas (II: 145)
  • The final battle during the rebellion was at Pyke. When the wall of the castle was breached, Thoros of Myr was the first to go through, but Jorah Mormont was not far behind. He won his knighthood for that act of valor (II: 146)
  • To celebrate his victory against Balon Greyjoy, King Robert had a tourney held in Lannisport. Jorah Mormont won the champion's laurels and because of this received the permission of Lord Leyton Hightower to wed his daughter, Lynesse (II: 146)
  • It takes about a fortnight to sail from Lannisport to Bear Island (II: 146)
  • Bear Island is rich in trees and bears, but poor in everything else (II: 146)
  • All the women of Bear Island are said to be warlike she-bears, for they have needed to be. In old days the ironmen would come raiding in their longboats, or wildlings from the Frozen Shore. The men would be away fishing, like as not, so their wives had to defend themselves and their children or be carried off (III: 522)
  • There is a carving on the gate of the Mormont keep, a woman in a bearskin with a child in one arm suckling at her breast and a battleaxe in the other (III: 522)
  • Jeor Mormont is the 997th Lord Commander of the Night's Watch (III: 612) Bear Island was ruled by the Woodfoots before the ironmen came (III: 630)
3.2.3.5. The Tallharts of Torrhen’s Square
  • At least some of the Tallharts follow the Faith (I: 500)
  • The Tallharts have their seat at Torrhen's Square (II: 189)
  • The walls of Torrhen's Square are made of stone, thirty feet high with square towers at each corner and a square keep within (II: 399)
3.2.3.6. The Umbers of Last Hearth
  • The Umber lands are along the shore of the Bay of Seals (II: 188)
  • The Umber lands are rich in pines and old oaks (II: 188)
  • The seat of the Umbers is named Last Hearth (III: 274)
  • The Umbers and their people are mostly east of the kingsroad, but they graze their sheep into the high meadows of the mountains during the summer (III: 275)
  • The Umbers were part of the host that defeated the brother Kings-beyond-the-Wall, Gendel and Gorne, when they broke out past the Wall some 3,000 years ago (III: 300)
  • Wildling raids have increased over the last years as the Watch has grown weaker, and so the places nearest the Wall have been raided so often that people have moved further south into the mountains or into the Umber lands east of the Kingsroad (III: 453)
  • The Umber lands are raided by wildlings on occasion, but not as often as those who live nearer to the Wall in the Gift (III: 453)
  • Some say the Night's King was an Umber (III: 630)
3.2.3.7. The Glovers of Deepwood Motte
  • Deepwood Motte is south of tidal flats and north of Sea Dragon Point (II: 290)
  • Deepwood Motte is north by northwest of Winterfell on the other side of the wolfswood (II: 531)
  • Deepwood Motte is a wooden keep set on a hill (II: 589)
  • Deepwood Motte is near enough to the sea that supplies and men can reach it when there is need (II: 589)
3.2.3.8. The Reeds of Greywater Watch and the Crannogmen
  • Crannogmen of the Neck are seen disdainfully by some, called frogeaters, mudmen, and bog devils (II: 240. IV: 169)
  • The crannogmen are seen as thieves and cravens (II: 240)
  • Crannogmen use nets, bronze knives, frog spears, and round leather shields (II: 241)
  • It has been hundreds and thousands of years since the crannogmen swore their oaths of fealty to the Starks (II: 241)
  • The fealty oath of the Reeds to the Starks of Winterfell: "To Winterfell we pledge the faith of Greywater. Hearth and heart and harvest we yield up to you, my lord. Our swords and spears and arrows are yours to command. Grant mercy to our weak, help to our helpless, and justice to all, and we shall never fail you." This is spoken together by two people (such as children of Lord Reed) and then one speaks, "I swear it by earth and water," while the other says after "I swear it by bronze and iron." Finally, they finish together with "We swear it by ice and fire" (II: 241)
  • When visiting important personages, crannogmen bring gifts of fish and frog and fowl (II: 241)
  • The crannogmen dwell among the bogs of the Neck and seldom leave their lands (II: 241, 242)
  • The crannogmen are a poor people, fishers and frog-hunters who live in homes made of thatch and woven reeds which are set on floating islands deep in the swamps (II: 242)
  • It is said that the crannogmen are cowardly and fight with poisoned weapons, preferring to hide from foes rather than give open battle (II: 242. IV: 169)
  • Howland Reed had been one of Eddard Stark's staunchest companions during the war against the Targaryens (II: 242)
  • The crannogmen eat frogs, fish, lizard-lions, and all manner of fowl (II: 242)
  • Women are known to fight amongst the crannogmen using nets and spears (II: 319)
  • There are no knights at Greywater Watch, nor master-at-arms or maesters (II: 319)
  • Ravens can't find Greywater Watch because it moves (II: 319)
  • The crannogmen say a person has the greensight if they dream prophetic dreams which always come true (moss-green eyes may come with it) (II: 320)
  • A greenseer sometimes dreams as other people, but the green dreams are different (II: 320)
  • A greenseers dream takes the form of metaphor; for instance, a winged creature bound with grey stone chains to the earth might represent a person who has that creature as an emblem who is chained by preconceptions from achieving his full potential (II: 320)
  • There are foolish stories which say that the crannogmen have a boggy smell like frogs and trees and scummy water. Moss grows under their arms instead of hair, and they can live with nothing to eat but mud and breathe swampwater (II: 534)
  • Histories say the crannogmen grew close to the children of the forest when the greenseers tried to bring the waters down upon the Neck (II: 534-535)
  • All crannogmen are small (III: 104)
  • The hunters of the crannogmen are said to be able to breathe mud and fly through trees (III: 107, 108)
  • There are no knights in the Neck, though it's said that there are many dead ones under it in the bogs (III: 278)
  • Andals and ironmen, Freys and other fools, all have set out to conquer Greywater. Not one of them could find it (III: 278)
  • The Reed children tell a tale from their father, who figures large in it, about the Knight of the Laughing Tree who appeared at the great tournament at Harrenhal in the year of the false spring. Lyanna Stark and her siblings figure largely (III: 279)
  • The crannogmen say they have magics that allow them to breathe mud and run on leaves, on change earth to water and water to earth with no more than a word. They can talk to trees, weave words, and make castles appear and disappear as well, or so they say (III: 279)
  • The crannogmen use little skin boats that are light enough to carry with ease (III: 279, 280)
  • The crannogmen rarely ride horses, and their hands are made for oars rather than lances (III: 282)
  • There are ways through the Neck that are not on any map, known only to the crannogmen, such as narrow trails between the bogs and wet roads through the reeds that only boats can follow (III: 526)
  • The old tongue of the First Men does not seem to be known in the Neck (III: 626)
  • A scratch from a crannogman arrow is said to be enough to leave a man in agony with bloody bowels, screaming as blood and watery feces runs down his legs until he dies (IV: 257)
  • Howland Reed fought with the northern host throughout Robert's rebellion (SSM: 1)
3.3. The Night’s Watch
  • The horses tend to be small, rough-coated garrons (I: 2)
  • The men of Night's Watch wear only black (I: 2, 44, etc.)
  • The Night's Watch has fewer than 1,000 men (I: 20)
  • Night's Watch is a Sworn Brotherhood (I: 56)
  • The Night's Watch is largely made up of the misfits of the kingdoms: peasants, debtors, poachers, rapers, thieves, and bastards. Only a few of the noble and knightly houses have members at Night's Watch (I: 104)
  • Most recruits are seventeen or older (I: 149)
  • Recruits of the Watch wear roughspun black (I: 149)
  • The Lord Commander leads the Night's Watch, with the chief Maester, First Ranger, and others as high officers under him (I: 150)
  • On the Wall, a man gets only what he earns (I: 150)
  • The men of Night's Watch puts aside their families when they swear their vows, making the others members his brothers (I: 150)
  • Foods from the sea, such as crabs, come from Eastwatch in barrels packed with snow (I: 171)
  • The Night's Watch received some knights after the War of the Usurper, as Tywin Lannister gave those who fought for the Targaryens at King's Landing the choice of losing their heads or taking the black (I: 172)
  • The Watch has some six hundred men at Castle Black, two hundred at the Shadow Tower, and even fewer at Eastwatch. A bare third of them are fighting men (I: 174)
  • Once the Watch spent the summers building, and each Lord Commander raised the Wall higher. Now it is all the Watch can do to stay alive (I: 174)
  • The Night's Watch believes a Long Night will fall as it did 8,000 years before, and only it will stand between the Seven Kingdoms and a darkness out of the north (I: 175, 547)
  • A man on sentry duty atop the wall has a full mile assigned to them (I: 177)
  • When recruits are pronounced ready to take the vows, a special dinner is made for them (I: 372)
  • Every man in the Watch walks the wall, and all are expected to bare steel in its defense, but the rangers are the true fighting men of the Watch (I: 372)
  • The order of the builders provide masons and carpenters, miners, and woodsmen (I: 372, 373)
  • The order of the stewards keep the Watch alive. They hunt and farm, tend horses, milk cows, gather firewood, cook meals, make clothing, and bring supplies from the south (among other like things) (I: 376)
  • The Night's Watch are called the black knights of the Wall in songs (I: 396)
  • The vows of new members of the Night's Watch are given at sunset as the night gathers. (I: 431)
  • All crimes and debts are forgiven and forgotten, all ties of loyalty and grudges are washed away, and old loves and old wrongs are put away when a man becomes a Sworn Brother of the Night's Watch. He begins life anew (I: 431)
  • The Lord Commander has a personal steward who serves his needs. By custom he also serves as his squire (I: 433, 434, 655)
  • The vow of Night's Watch (I: 435, 436)
  • When men return from ranging beyond the Wall, watchmen on top of the Wall sound a great horn to hail their return if they are seen. (I: 467)
  • When Aegon slew Black Harren, Harren's brother was Lord Commander of the Watch and had 10,000 swords at his command; but he did not march (I: 553)
  • When the Andals crossed the narrow sea and swept away the kingdoms of the First Men, the sons of the fallen kings held to their vows (I: 553)
  • A stranger wearing black is viewed with cold suspicion in every village and holdfast north of the Neck, on the assumption that he is a member of Night's Watch who has forsaken his vows (I: 646, 647)
  • The men of the Wall call the whores of Mole Town "buried treasures" and sometimes brothers of the Watch sneak off to go "mining." That too is oathbreaking, but no one seems to care (I: 648)
  • The vow of Night's Watch: Night gathers, and now my watch begins. It shall not end until my death. I shall take no wife, hold no lands, father no children. I shall wear no crowns and win no glory. I shall live and die at my post. I am the sword in the darkness. I am the watcher on the walls. I am the fire that burns against the cold, the light that brings the dawn, the horn that wakes the sleepers, the shield that guards the realms of men. I pledge my life and honor to the Night's Watch, for this night and all nights to come (I: 651. II: 691)
  • Any one of the lords bannermen to the Starks commands more swords than can be found on the Wall (I: 653)
  • Men of the Watch going south to gather more recruits also gather supplies such as hides and cloth, pig iron, ravens, books and paper and ink, oil, chests of medicines and spices, and bales of sourleaf (II: 23)
  • Pepper is not among the products that gets to the Wall (II: 62)
  • Important books and records used to be copied regularly, with some of the oldest probably having been copied more than half a hundred times (II: 70)
  • A book kept in Castle Black on the Wall, written by a ranger named Redwyn in the time of King Dorren Stark, which tells of fighting giants and trading with the Children of the Forest (II: 70)
  • Among the brotherhood of Night's Watch, there is an unspoken pact that men do not discuss too deeply the going-ons in the realm when they have anything to do with kin and old loyalties (II: 74)
  • There was a time when a sworn brother of the Watch was feasted from Dorne to Winterfell and high lords called it an honor to shelter him under his own roof (II: 103)
  • The "ranger roads" are game trails and stream beds which the brothers of the Watch who are ranging north use to lead them deeper into the north beyond the Wall (II: 153)
  • Some wildlings have actually aided the rangers in the past (II: 260, 261)
  • Rangers have been known to lay with wildling women in the past (II: 261)
  • The Night's Watch is not adverse to accepting orphans and boys from the wildlings to raise to the black, and has done so in the past (II: 274-275, 558)
  • All the wildlings hosts that have attacked southwards have broken their strength on the Wall or by the power of Winterfell beyond (II: 276)
  • A single horn blast is used to herald arriving brothers of the Watch. Two horn blasts seem to warn of attack (II: 457)
  • "Rayder" appears to be the last name given at the Wall for men who were wildling-born but raised to the black (II: 558)
  • The wildlings do not spare brothers of the Night's Watch, unless they break their oaths and prove it by cutting their black cloaks, swearing on a father's grave, cursing the Watch and the Lord Commander, and other like things (II: 692)
  • A thousand years ago, a Lord Commander said that the Watch are dressed in black because they aren't expected to survive their duties (III: 11)
  • Three horn blasts have not been sounded in thousands of years (III: 14)
  • Three horn blasts warn of the Others approaching (III: 14)
  • The Lord Commander some 10 or 12 years ago was a Qorgyle (III: 82)
  • There is more commerce between the black brothers and the free folk that many realize or admit (III: 83)
  • Rangers often share skins for warmth (III: 169)
  • Two short horn blasts followed by a long one is a call to mount up (III: 204)
  • A black brother spoke at the great tournament at Harrenhal, asking for knights to join the Night's Watch (III: 281)
  • Each patrol on the Wall is made up of four men, two rangers and two builders. The builders note cracks, melting, and other structual problems, while the rangers look for signs of foes. The patrols ride mules because of their surefootedness, specially trained for the duty (III: 298)
  • One patrol in four follow the base of the Wall to search for cracks in the foundation of the ice or signs of tunneling (III: 298)
  • Lord Commander Qorgyle used to send patrols out every third day from Castle Black to Eastwatch-by-the-Sea, and every second day from Castle Black to the Shadow Tower, but the Watch had more men in his day (III: 298)
  • Lord Commander Mormont varys the number of patrols and the days of their departure, to make it more difficult for the wildlings to know their comings and goings. Sometimes a larger force will be sent to one of the abandoned castles for a fortnight or a moon's turn as well, which was suggested by the First Ranger, Benjen Stark (III: 298, 299)
  • The Watch, with the King in the North and the Umbers, trapped the brother kings Gendel and Gorne some 3,000 years ago. Gorne was slain, and the Watch and the rest of the Seven Kingdoms believe that Gendel was slain as well, although the wildlings claim differently (III: 300)
  • The Night's Watch must once have known about the effectiveness of dragonglass against the Others, but it has forgotten much in the hundreds and thousands of years since it was founded (III: 373)
  • At the funeral for a black brother, his fellows finish their eulogies with the words, "And now his watch is ended" (III: 375)
  • The New Gift belongs to the Night's Watch, as does Brandon's Gift which lies north of it. It's said that Brandon the Builder gave all the land south of the Wall to the black brothers, to a distance of twenty-five leagues, for their sustenance and support, but some maesters say that it was some other Brandon, not the Builder (III: 452, 453. SSM: 1)
  • Thousands of years after the creation of Brandon's gift, Good Queen Alysanne visited the Wall on her dragon Silverwing some two hundred years ago, and she thought the Night's Watch was so brave that she had the Old King (who followed after her on his own dragon) double the size of their lands to fifty leagues, making the New Gift (III: 453. IV: 73)
  • Wildling raids have increased over the last years as the Watch has grown weaker, and so the places nearest the Wall have been raided so often that people have moved further south into the mountains or into the Umber lands east of the Kingsroad (III: 453)
  • Brandon's Gift had been farmed for years by the Watch, but as it dwindled there were fewer hands to plow the fields, tend the bees, and plant the orchards, so the wild had reclaimed many a field and hall (III: 461. SSM: 1)
  • The New Gift had villages and holdfasts whose taxes, rendered in goods and labor, helped feed and clothe the black brothers, but many of those stand abandoned as well (III: 461. V: 51. SSM: 1)
  • The black brothers make hard enemies but good customers for ships with the right cargo (III: 608)
  • Lord Commander Runcel Hightower tried to bequeathe the Watch to his bastard son (III: 612)
  • Lord Commander Rodrik Flint thought to make himself King-beyond-the-Wall (III: 612)
  • Tristan Mudd, Mad Marq Rankenfell, and the bastard Robin Hill were Lord Commanders who nearly destroyed the Watch when they forgot their vows in favor of their pride and ambition (III: 612. SSM: 1)
  • 600 years ago, the commanders at Snowgate and the Nightfort went to war against each other. When their Lord Commander sought to intervene, they joined forces to murder him. The Stark in Winterfell had to take a hand, and their heads (III: 612)
  • The reason the strongholds of the Watch have been made without fortifications to the south is so that they are not defensible should any members of the Watch go rogue (III: 612)
  • Jeor Mormont is the 997th Lord Commander of the Night's Watch (III: 612)
  • The Nightfort figures in some of the scariest stories of the North, although doubtlessly many of them are false. It was there that Night's King reigned before his name was wiped from the memory of man, and where the Rat Cook served the Andal king his prince-and-bacon pie, where the 79 sentinels stood their watch, where brave young Danny Flint had been raped and murdered, where King Sherrit had called down his curse of the Andals of old, where the apprentice boys had faced the thing that came in the night, where blind Symeon Star-Eyes had seen the Hellhounds fight, and where Mad Axe had walked the yards and climbed the towers to butcher his brothers in the dark (III: 624, 625)
  • The Nightfort was the first castle abandoned by the Watch, back in the time of the Old King. Even then it had been three-quarters empty and too costly to maintain. Good Queen Alysanne had suggested that the Watch replace it with a smaller, newer castle at a spot seven miles to the east, where the Wall curved along the shore of a beautiful green lake. Deep Lake was paid for by the queen's jewels and built by the men the Old King had sent north (III: 628)
  • Seventy-nine deserters once left the Nightfort to become outlaws. One of them was Lord Ryswell's youngest son, so when they reached the barrowlands they sought shelter at his castle, but he took them captive and returned them to the Nightfort. The Lord Commander had holes hewn in the top of the Wall and he put the deserters in them, sealing them alive in the ice with spears and horns so that they could face north; they had left their posts in life, so in death their watch went on forever. Years later, when Lord Ryswell was old and dying, he had himself carried to the Nightfort so he could take the black and stand beside the son he had loved (III: 628)
  • The Night's King had been the thirteenth man to lead the Night's Watc (III: 629).
  • The legends say that the Night's King was a warrior without fear, and when he saw a woman atop the Wall with skin as white as the moon and eyes like blue stars, he chased her and loved her though her skin was cold as ice, and when he gave his seed to her he gave his soul as well. He brought her back to the Nightfort and proclaimed her a queen and himself her king, and with sorceries he bound his Sworn Brothers to his will. For thirteen years he ruled until finally the Stark of Winterfell and Joramun of the wildlings had joined to free the Watch from bondage. After his fall, when it was discovered that he had been sacrificing to the Others, all records of him were destroyed and his very name was forbidden (III: 629, 630)
  • The Night's Watch selects its Lord Commander by vote. A candidate needs two-thirds of the votes of the Sworn Brothers to be given that station (III: 860)
  • Since most brothers are unlettered, tradition had it that voting was done with tokens dropped into big iron kettles. The barrels of tokens are hidden by a drape so that no one's vote could be seen. Men are allowed to vote for a friend or even whole garrisons who cannot make it to the choosing (III: 862)
  • Seashells, stones, copper pennies, arrowheads, nails, and acorns are among the tokens used in the choosing (III: 862)
  • There was once a choosing that lasted near two years and seven hundred votes (III: 862)
  • The Lord Commander of the Watch has been chosen by the vote of the Sworn Brothers he would lead ever since the Wall was raised thousands of years ago (III: 882)
  • The Gifts were given to the Night's Watch in perpetuity, meaning that they cannot be lawfully seized, attainted, or taken (III: 883)
  • Any Sworn Brother may offer up any other Sworn Brother's name for consideration in the choosing of the Lord Commander (III: 896)
  • The Annals of the Black Centaur, an exhaustive chronicle by Septon Jorquen of the nine years in which Ser Orbert Caswell was Lord Commander of the Night’s Watch (IV: 72)
  • The Night's Watch has long emphasized sword training over the bow, a relic of days when one in every ten members of the Watch had been a knight. Now the figure is one in a hundred (IV: 74)
  • Four hundred years before the Conquest, Osric Stark was elected Lord Commander at the age of ten, and served for sixty years. He is one of four Lord Commanders known to have been elected younger than sixteen. All of them were sons, brothers, or bastards of the Kings of the North (IV: 79-80)
  • It is recorded that the children of the forest used to give the Night's Watch a hundred daggers of dragonglass each year during the Age of Heroes (IV: 80)
  • The Night's Watch keeps several galleys at Eastwatch-by-the-Sea, both larger vessels capable of crossing the narrow sea and lean fighting vessels (IV: 217)
  • Maester Aemon joined the watch at the age of thirty-five. He was escorted by Ser Duncan the Tall, and arrived with pomp that the Watch had not seen since Nymeria sent them six kings in golden fetters. His brother, King Aegon V, emptied the dungeons to send an "honor guard" with him, and one of the released prisoners was none other than Brynden Rivers, known as Bloodraven (IV: 218-219)
  • Bloodraven was eventually chosen as lord commander of the Night's Watch (IV: 219)
  • It's said a dozen Lord Commanders came and went while Maester Aemon served on the Wall, beginning with his brother Aegon's reign (IV: 519)
  • A boy of a little less than a man's sixteen years is completely bound by taking the oaths of the Watch, his minority providing no loopholes. The Night's Watch would not administer the oath to a youth several years from his majority, however (SSM: 1)
  • Many transactions at Mole's Town are paid for by barter, but there is coin to be found on the Wall although not as much as in old days when the Gifts were more thoroughly worked and taxed (SSM: 1)
  • There have been a few cases of men of the Watch having their vows released, but they are very rare, requiring the proper authority (SSM: 1, 2)
  • Not all recruits to the Watch have gone dociley (SSM: 1)
  • The wildlings do not hate northmen as much as they hate the Night's Watch (SSM: 1)
  • Maesters serving on the Wall take the oaths of the Night's Watch (SSM: 1)
3.3.1. The Wall and Night’s Watch Castles
  • The Wall is said to be weeping if the temperature in above freezing, so that the ice melts (I: 4)
  • The Wall has stood some 8,000 years (I: 37)
  • The Night's Watch is a sworn brotherhood (I: 45)
  • Even a bastard may rise high in the Watch (I: 56)
  • There are no inns at the Wall (I: 100)
  • Equipment for weapons practice is kept in the armory of Castle Black (I: 149)
  • The haunted forest is north of Castle Black and the Wall (I: 150)
  • Castle Black's Common Hall is a great timbered structure (I: 15. V: 51)
  • A tunnel from Castle Black is large enough for men to lead garrons through. It exits north of the Wall (I: 150)
  • Castle Black has no godswood, only a small sept (I: 150)
  • The Wall is nearly 700 feet high, made of ice that can be seen for miles in the distance which seems grey or blue depending on weather. The top is wide enough for a dozen mounted knights to ride abreast (I: 154)
  • The tallest tower in Castle Black is a third the height of the Wall (I: 154)
  • The Wall has huge cranes and catapults at its top (I: 154)
  • Castle Black has no walls to defend it to west, east, or south. The Wall stands to the north. It has timber keeps and stone towers. (I: 154)
  • Castle Black has a King's Tower for honored guests, although a king has not visited the Watch in a hundred years (I: 155)
  • The old stables of Castle Black are unused. Only the east stables are (I: 156)
  • Hardin's Tower leans and has broken battlements. It is abandoned, but no one cares who uses it (I: 156)
  • Once Castle Black quartered five thousand fighting men with all their horses, servants, and equipment. It now holds only a tenth that number, and parts of it are falling into ruin (I: 156)
  • The Night's Watch once boasted nineteen castles along the hundred leagues of the Wall, but only three remain in use (I: 156)
  • Eastwatch-by-the-Sea is easternmost of the great keeps, and the Shadow Tower is at the western end of the Wall, hard by the mountains. Castle Black sits between them (I: 156)
  • The Commander's Keep is where the Lord Commander keeps his rooms (I: 157)
  • The Wall is three hundred miles long (I: 174)
  • There are fisherfolk near Eastwatch (I: 175)
  • The fisherfolk near Eastwatch claim to have seen white walkers on the shore (I: 175)
  • Wooden stairs ascend the south face of the Wall at Castle Black, anchored by huge beams frozen into it. The great switchback stair claws and climbs its way up the face like a drunken thunderbolt (I: 176. III: 613)
  • An iron cage besides Castle Black's well is connected to a winch. It is used to take supplies and men up to the top of the Wall, with enough room for ten men to be lifted at a time (I: 176. III: 715)
  • Mole's Town is a little village half a league south of Castle Black (I: 176)
  • Besides the crane at the top of the Wall at Castle Black is a small warming shed for the men on watch (I: 177. III: 778)
  • Crushed stone is spread atop the Wall to provide grip for those who walk it. After a time the gravel sinks into the ice and must be replaced (I: 177)
  • A great catapult, high as a city wall, is on top of the Wall at Castle Black. It's throwing arm had been removed for repairs and then forgotten (I: 177)
  • The forest north of the Wall is never allowed closer than half a mile (I: 179)
  • Over the decades, the places which the abandoned citadels once manned have had the forest creeping in nearer to the Wall (I: 179)
  • Once the order of the builders quarried huge blocks of ice from frozen lakes in the haunted forest and dragged them south to raise the Wall higher (I: 373)
  • It is all the builders can do to ride from Eastwatch to the Shadow Tower and repair any cracks (I: 373)
  • The maester at Castle Black has his apartments in a stout wooden keep beneath the rookery (I: 374. III: 618)
  • Beyond the Wall, in the haunted forest, there are groves of carven weirwoods left by the Children. Men who follow the Old Gods swear their vows there. One is half a league from Castle Black, a rough ring of nine trees (I: 432)
  • The Wall has no gates anywhere, simply a few tunnels cut through it that are barred at several points by heavy iron bars secured by massive chains that must be unlocked (I: 434)
  • There are storerooms chiselled into the Wall at its base, used to keep grain and meat and sometimes beer (I: 468)
  • The First Men built the Wall (I: 654)
  • Thousands of books are kept in vaults under Castle Black (II: 69)
  • Some of the records kept are fairly mundane, such as inventories or bills of sale (II: 70)
  • Castle Black's library also contains drawings of the faces in the weirwoods, a book about the language of the children of the forest, works that the Citadel doesn't have, scrolls from Valyria, and counts of seasons written by maesters dead a thousand years (II: 71)
  • The library shelves are so closely spaced that people must walk in single file (II: 71)
  • The vault the library of Castle Black is kept in opens into one of the tunnels called wormwalks, winding subterranean passages that link the keeps and towers of Castle Black. The wormwalks are seldom used in the summer, but in winter with fifty foot-high snowdrifts the wormwalks are the only way to keep the castle together (II: 71, 72)
  • Though the Watch raised nineteen castles along the hundred leagues of the Wall, they had never manned more than seventeen at one time (II: 462. III: 456)
  • Greyguard is one of the abandoned castles, now much collapsed, and is nearer to the Shadow Tower. The Long Barrow is another castle, nearer to Eastwatch (II: 462)
  • Stonedoor is another abandoned castle that's towards the west and the Shadow Tower, and apparently in better condition than Greyguard. (II: 462)
  • Icemark and Deep Lake are other castles (II: 462)
  • The Wall is apparently wider at its base than at its top. It's so wide that it'd take a hundred men year to cut through it using picks and axes (II: 462)
  • The gates that guard the tunnels that lead through the Wall are frozen shut in times of danger (II: 463)
  • The ninteen castles of the Watch, from east to west: Westwatch-by-the-Bridge, the Shadow Tower, Sentinel Stand, Greyguard, Stonedoor, Hoarfrost Hill, Icemark, the Nightfort, Deep Lake, Queensgate, Castle Black, Oakenshield, Woodswatch-by-the-Pool, Sable Hall, Rimegate, the Long Barrow, the Torches, Greenguard, and Eastwatch-by-the-Sea (III: Map 3)
  • Brandon's Gift and the New Gift stretch from the Wall to fifty leagues south of it (III: 83, 452, 453)
  • Each patrol on the Wall is made up of four men, two rangers and two builders. The builders note cracks, melting, and other structual problems, while the rangers look for signs of foes. The patrols ride mules because of their surefootedness, specially trained for the duty as they are often ridden on ungravelled portions of the Wall (III: 298)
  • Aside from the Wall around Castle Black, much of it has not been gravelled for many years (III: 298)
  • One patrol in four follow the base of the Wall to search for cracks in the foundation of the ice or signs of tunneling (III: 298)
  • Arson Iceaxe was a wildling who had tunneled halfway through the Wall when he was found by rangers from the Nightfort. They did not trouble to disturb him at his digging, only sealed the way behind with ice and stone and snow (III: 298)
  • There is a vast network of caves near the Wall and the abandoned castles of Greyguard and Stonedoor. It's said one of the passages even opens south of the Wall that the wildlings call Gorne's Way (III: 297, 300)
  • The Wall is often said to be 700 feet high, but in fact that's only a rough approximation as it can actually stand both higher and lower in places, coming to as high as 800 or even 900 feet from the ground but with as much as a third of that height made from earth and stone. This is because Brandon the Builder laid his huge foundation blocks along the heights whenever feasible, using cliffs and rugged hills (III: 336, 337)
  • The Wall has battlements (III: 336)
  • The Wall is very straight and uniform east of Castle Black, but it winds, dips, and climbs along the wild and rugged terrain to the west (III: 337)
  • Once brothers of the Watch used to go out every day to cut back trees coming too close to the Wall, but those days were long gone and the forest grows right up to the ice at many points (III: 337)
  • In the Seven Kingdoms, it's said that the Wall marks the end of the world (III: 337)
  • The Wall is not smooth because of the ravages of wind and melting, and imperfect placement. Horizontal ledges and vertical chimneys mark such imperfect joins (III: 339)
  • The Wall is thicker at the base than at the top, so thick that the gates are more like tunnels through the ice (III: 456)
  • Some call the abandoned castles of the Watch "the ghost castles" (III: 456)
  • The gates passing through the Wall have been sealed with ice and stone wherever castles have been abandoned (III: 456)
  • In legend, Brandon the Builder was said to have had the help of giants in raising the Wall (III: 461)
  • Greyguard has been abandoned for two hundred years. A section of the huge stone steps that climbed the Wall there collapsed a century before (III: 464)
  • One of the castles on the Wall was named after Good Queen Alysanne, being called Queensgate. It was once Snowgate (III: 468)
  • The Flint Barracks at Castle Black (III: 547)
  • The Commander's Keep is also called the Lord Commander's Tower (III: 547)
  • Weatherback Ridge is near to Castle Black and is within view of the kingsroad. A beacon burning there can be seen from the castle (III: 553, 610)
  • The galleys of Eastwatch patrol of the Bay of Seals in part to catch smugglers who trade weapons to the wildlings (III: 608)
  • The old Flint Barrack roof is creneled (III: 611)
  • The King's Tower is not the tallest one at Castle Black, though it's 100 feet tall. That honor goes to the Lance, which is high, slim, and crumbling (III: 612, 618)
  • The strongest tower at Castle Black is the Tower of Guards (III: 612)
  • The King's Tower at Castle Black overlooks the gate and the foot of the wooden stair leading up the Wall (III: 612)
  • The reason the strongholds of the Watch have been made without fortifications to the south is so that they are not defensible should any members of the Watch go rogue (III: 612)
  • The Tower of Guards is more than a bowshot away from the King's Tower (III: 617)
  • The old stables of Castle Black are some fifty yards away from the King's Tower (III: 617)
  • The east stables of Castle Black are still in use (III: 618)
  • There's a vegetable garden at Castle Black (III: 618)
  • Castle Black's yard is made with flagstones (III: 618)
  • There's an old dry well at Castle Black (III: 618)
  • The Silent Tower at Castle Black (III: 618)
  • The north parapet of the King's Tower looks down on the gate at Castle Black (III: 618)
  • The Nightfort figures in some of the scariest stories of the North, although doubtlessly many of them are false. It was there that Night's King reigned before his name was wiped from the memory of man, and where the Rat Cook served the Andal king his prince-and-bacon pie, where the 79 sentinels stood their watch, where brave young Danny Flint had been raped and murdered, where King Sherrit had called down his curse of the Andals of old, where the apprentice boys had faced the thing that came in the night, where blind Symeon Star-Eyes had seen the Hellhounds fight, and where Mad Axe had walked the yards and climbed the towers to butcher his brothers in the dark (III: 624, 625)
  • The Nightfort has been abandoned for the last 200 years (III: 625)
  • The Nightfort's kitchen was domed, though now a twisted white weirwood has pushed its way through the dome (III: 625)
  • The gate the Nightfort guards has been sealed since the black brothers had abandoned it and departed for Deep Lake. Its iron portcullis has been lowered and the chains to raise it were carried off, and the tunnel was packed with stone and rubble frozen together until they were as impenetrable as the Wall itself (III: 625)
  • Only at the Nightfort were the steps up the Wall actually cut from the ice (III: 627)
  • The Nightfort was the first castle on the Wall (III: 627, 628)
  • The castles after the Nightfort had steps of wood or stone, or long ramps of gravel and earth that went up the wall, because it was found that the ice steps of the Nightfort were too treacherous (III: 627)
  • The steps at the Nightfort have melted and re-frozen many times and so are smaller, smoother, and rounder than they once were. Towards the very top, they're little more than icy knobs (III: 627)
  • The Nightfort is twice as old as Castle Black (III: 628)
  • The Nightfort was the largest castle on the Wall (III: 628)
  • The Nightfort was the first castle abandoned by the Watch, back in the time of the Old King. Even then it had been three-quarters empty and too costly to maintain. Good Queen Alysanne had suggested that the Watch replace it with a smaller, newer castle at a spot seven miles to the east, where the Wall curved along the shore of a beautiful green lake. Deep Lake was paid for by the queen's jewels and built by the men the Old King had sent north (III: 628)
  • It's said that the ghosts of the seventy-nine sentinels haunt the Nightfort (III: 628)
  • Seventy-nine deserters once left the Nightfort to become outlaws. One of them was Lord Ryswell's youngest son, so when they reached the barrowlands they sought shelter at his castle, but he took them captive and returned them to the Nightfort. The Lord Commander had holes hewn in the top of the Wall and he put the deserters in them, sealing them alive in the ice with spears and horns so that they could face north; they had left their posts in life, so in death their watch went on forever. Years later, when Lord Ryswell was old and dying, he had himself carried to the Nightfort so he could take the black and stand beside the son he had loved (III: 628)
  • The Nightfort has a bell tower with no bells, a rookery with no birds, a brewhouse with a vault beneath filled with huge oaken casks, a library with collapsed bins and shelves and no books, a dungeon with cells enough to hold 500 captives but the rusted bars are brittle, one crumbling wall of what was once the great hall, a bathhouse that is sinking into the ground, and a huge thornbush that dominates the practice yard outside the armory (III: 629)
  • The armory and the forge still stand at the Nightfort (III: 629)
  • Looking north from the Wall at the Nightfort, one can see the haunted forest, wilds hills as far as the eyes can see, and a lake (III: 629)
  • The legends say that the Night's King was a warrior without fear, and when he saw a woman atop the Wall with skin as white as the moon and eyes like blue stars, he chased her and loved her though her skin was cold as ice, and when he gave his seed to her he gave his soul as well. He brought her back to the Nightfort and proclaimed her a queen and himself her king, and with sorceries he bound his Sworn Brothers to his will. For thirteen years he ruled until finally the Stark of Winterfell and Joramun of the wildlings had joined to free the Watch from bondage. After his fall, when it was discovered that he had been sacrificing to the Others, all records of him were destroyed and his very name was forbidden (III: 629, 630)
  • There's a huge central well in the Night Fort's octagon-shaped kitchen besides which grows the tall weirwood which has pushed its way through the slate floor. The well is some twelve feet across and has steps circling down into the darkness (III: 630)
  • There is a hidden gate as old as the Wall at the Nightfort, called the Black Gate, which only a man of the Night's Watch who has said his vows can open. It is set deep in a wall of the well at the center of the kitchens and is made of white weirwood with a face on it. A glow seems to come from the wood, like milk and moonlight, but very faintly. The face is old and pale, wrinkled and shrunken, its mouth and eyes closed and its cheeks sunken, its brow withered, and its chin sagging. (III: 635, 638)
  • The Wall is more than just ice and stone. There are old spells woven into it, strong enough to keep creatures of a magical nature from passing it (III: 636. SSM: 1)
  • When someone approaches the Black Gate, the eyes open. They are white and blind, and then door asks, "Who are you?" A man of the Night Watch must repeat a part of his vows. The door will open then, saying, "Then pass", and its lips will open wider and wider still until nothing remains but a great gaping mouth in a ring of wrinkles (III: 638)
  • Water on the upper lip of the gate is strangely warm and salty as a tear (III: 638)
  • Fire can be had on top of the wall, in iron baskets on poles taller than a man (III: 716)
  • Attempts to breach the Wall with fire fails, because the icemelt quenches the flames (III: 717)
  • The gate through the Wall at Castle Black is a crooked tunnel through the ice, smaller than any castle gate and so narrow that rangers must lead their horses through single file. Three iron grates close the inner passage, each locked and chained and protected by a murder hole. The outer door is of old oak, nine inches thick and studded with iron (III: 717)
  • The Shadow Tower has its own maester (III: 781)
  • The Grey Keep and the Shieldhall at Castle Black have stood empty for many years (III: 856)
  • Eastwatch-by-the-Sea has its own maester (III: 889)
  • Ser Denys Mallister has commanded the Shadow Tower for some 33 years (III: 889)
  • The armory at Castle Black has a back entrance, where one can take steep stone steps to the wormways that link the keeps and towers below the earth. It is only a short walk to the bathhouse where there are tubs of cold and hot water (III: 892)
  • Castle Black has a lichyard beside the eastern road (IV: 83, 84)
  • There are no towns or inns in the shadow of the Wall (IV: 84)
  • Queensgate and Oakenshield are ruinous (V: 49)
  • Great lore raised the Wall, and great spells are locked beneath its ice (V: 59)
  • No army could go west around the Wall because of the mountains and a deep river gorge. Only small groups of raiders ever filter through (SSM: 1)
3.4. The Wildlings
  • Wildlings are executed if caught south of the Wall (I: 12)
  • The wildlings are seen as cruel and primitive, killers and thieves and slavers (I: 12)
  • The wildlings speak in fear of the white walkers, which some of them are fighting (I: 338)
  • The wildlings name themselves the Free Folk (I: 484)
  • The wildlings are known to enter the Seven Kingdoms by entering the mountains west of the Shadow Tower and taking high, perilous passes south (I: 652)
  • Wildlings can and do scale the Wall to enter the south (II: 54. III: 83)
  • A typical wildling village has small, one-room houses made of unmortared stone (II: 150)
  • The villagers of Whitetree put the burnt remains of their dead inside of the mouth of their carved weirwood (II: 151)
  • The wildlings burn their dead (II: 151)
  • Wildlings sometimes use little boats to steal down past the wall, crossing the Bay of Seals (II: 188)
  • Some wildlings have actually aided the rangers in the past (II: 260, 261)
  • There are wildlings who believe the Others are gods, calling them the cold gods in the night and white shadows; they give up animals and even children to appease them when 'the white cold' comes (II: 271)
  • Not even wildlings dare live in the Frostfangs during the winter (II: 374)
  • There are thousands of wildlings (II: 374)
  • The Ice Dragon (its name may be different outside of the North) is a constellation used to help mark direction, because the blue star in the rider's eye points the way north (II: 381)
  • The wildlings call the Others the white walkers (II: 381)
  • The wildlings keep thralls (II: 458)
  • Warrior women are called spearwives amongst the wildlings (II: 542)
  • The wildlings appear to consider the bastard name of Snow evil (II: 542)
  • All the wildlings know the songs of the old King-beyond-the-Wall Bael the Bard, which in general have maids falling in love with him all the time (II: 544-545)
  • Men of the Night's Watch who have the misfortune to be captured rather than killed in battle tend to be killed slowly (II: 546)
  • The wildlings have many songs of their own (II: 558)
  • The Night's Watch is not adverse to accepting orphans and boys from the wildlings to raise to the black, and has done so in the past (II: 274-275, 558)
  • "Rayder" appears to be the last name given at the Wall for men who were wildling-born but raised to the black (II: 558)
  • The wildlings have horses (II: 560)
  • Mammoths appear in a wildling army (II: 561)
  • The wildlings do not spare brothers of the Night's Watch, unless they break their oaths and prove it by cutting their black cloaks, swearing on a father's grave, cursing the Watch and the Lord Commander, and other like things (II: 692)
  • Some wildlings use hounds (II: 695)
  • Wildlings use crude round shields of skin stretched over wicker, painting them with figures such as skulls and bones, serpents, bear claws, twisted demonic faces, and severed heads (II: 695. III: 617, 834)
  • Some wildlings have crude helms of wood and boiled leather or sewn sheepskins, while others use bows of wood and horn which are outranged by yew longbows but can seemingly shoot an arrow as high as seven hundred feet (II: 695-696. III: 721, 722)
  • Some wildlings even use weapons such as stone axes and flails (II: 695-696)
  • The only metal armor that wildlings wear are bits and pieces looted from dead rangers. (II: 695)
  • Wildlings do not mine nor smelt and there are few smiths and fewer forges north of the Wall (II: 695)
  • Wildling horses are surefooted (II: 695)
  • The wildlings cast runes (II: 696)
  • Even chiefs are argued with by lesser wildlings when a decision needs to be made (II: 698)
  • It's a rare thing to find a dozen mounted wildlings (III: 3)
  • The wildlings have oxen, mules, and horses (III: 11)
  • Wildling weapons are more often made of stone and bone than steel (III: 11)
  • The wildlings have wayns, carts, and sleds (III: 11, 77)
  • Wildlings use fire-hardened spears and lances on foot or horseback (III: 76)
  • Some wildlings have armor made from bronze scales sewn on to leather (III: 79)
  • The Thenns are more well armed and armored than most wildlings, with bronze helms, axes of bronze and a few axes of chipped stone, short stabbing spears with leaf-shaped heads, shirts sewn with bronze discs, and plain unadorned shields of black boiled leather with bronze rims and bosses (III: 79, 297, 469, 470, 548, 617-619)
  • The wildlings have maps, either stolen or made by themselves (III: 79)
  • The land of Thenn has a lord, whom they name Magnar ("lord" in the Old Tongue of the First Men). He is considered more a god than a man by his people (III: 80, 171)
  • Wildlings do not name their "Your Grace". Most simply refer to them by name without title or style (III: 82)
  • The wildlings have no trained ravens (III: 82)
  • There is more commerce between the black brothers and the free folk that many realize or admit (III: 83)
  • The guest right protects a guest who has eaten his host's food from harm, at least for the length of the stay. The laws of hospitality as old as the First Men (III: 83)
  • The wildlings occasionally scavage items that wash up on the Frozen Shore, sometimes including items from exotic lands such as silk from Asshai (III: 84)
  • Most wildling men wear beards (III: 167)
  • Wildling men are expected to be quite forceful with women, going so far as stealing them. The women, in turn, are expected to put up a fight (III, 169, 171)
  • The wildlings ride with whatever leader they please (III: 169)
  • Red hair is rare among the wildlings. They prize it and consider it lucky, saying it's kissed by fire (III: 170)
  • Wildlings ride mammoths, putting tall wooden towers on their backs (III: 170)
  • A wildling woman pregnant with a child she does not want will find a woods witch to make her a cup of moon tea (III: 171, 913)
  • The wildlings have no laws. They steal endlessly from each other, and have little interest in marriage (III: 171)
  • Wildlings live throughout the northern lands beyond the Wall, from the furthest reaches of the haunted forests to the hidden valleys of the Frostfangs, and even stranger places (III: 172)
  • There are wildlings from the Frozen Shore who ride in chariots made of walrus bones pulled by packs of huge, white savage dogs (III: 172, 720)
  • Terrible ice-river clans who are said to be cannibals (III: 172)
  • Cave dwellers with their faced dyed blue and purple and green (III: 172)
  • The little Hornfoot men trot along in the freezing cold on snow-covered ground, their feet bare but their soles hard as boiled leather (III: 172, 894)
  • More than half the wildlings have never seen the Wall, and most of those have not a single word of the Common Tongue (III: 172)
  • There are songs in the Old Tongue among the wildlings, and they make for strange and wild music (III: 172)
  • Some wildlings exist in clans, with clan mothers (III: 172)
  • The Hornfoots and the Nightrunners are traditional enemies, as are the cannibal clans of the great ice rivers and the walrus men of the Frozen Shore (III: 172)
  • Wildling hosts are undisciplined even under a strong king (III: 173)
  • Wildlings make use of aurochs and fire flingers in war (III: 173)
  • Only one in a hundred wildlings is mounted (III: 173)
  • The wildlings have a song called "The Last of the Giants", which needs a deep voice to be done properly. It's a sad song bemoaning how men have come into the land to hunt the giants from their stone halls, with dogs and fire and sharp spears, and saying that because of them all the giants shall be gone (III: 175, 176)
  • Wildlings have daggers made of bone (III: 175)
  • The wildlings have many of the same names for constellations as the folk of the Seven Kingdoms do, although there are some differences. The King's Crown is the named the Cradle by them, as the Stallion is named the Horned Lord (III: 294)
  • The red wanderer that the Faith holds sacred to the Smith is named the Thief by the wildlings. When the Thief is within the Moonmaid, it's considered a propitious time for a man to steal a woman (III: 294. IV: 225))
  • The men of Thenn speak the Old Tongue, and most have only a few words of the Common Tongue (III: 297)
  • Raiders start at a young age, at as little as 12 years (III: 298)
  • Arson Iceaxe was a wildling who had tunneled halfway through the Wall when he was found by rangers from the Nightfort. They did not trouble to disturb him at his digging, only sealed the way behind with ice and stone and snow (III: 298)
  • Some say Iceaxe can still be heard chipping away at the Wall if an ear is pressed to it (III: 298)
  • The Thenns consider themselves the last of the First Men (III: 299)
  • The Magnar of Thenn rules his people with an iron hand (III: 299)
  • The men of Thenn are surrounded in their homeland by cave dwellers, Hornfoot men, giants, and the cannibal clans of the ice rivers (III: 299)
  • The Thenns are savage fighters, but because of their belief in their Magnar as their god they are absolutely obedient and much more disciplined than other wildlings (III: 299)
  • The wildlings say that many have searched for Gorne's Way, but some are lost. They believe this is because they meet Gendel's children, who are always hungry for the flesh of men (III: 300, 301)
  • The wildlings do not bed members of their villages. They believe a true man will steal a woman from afar to strengthen the clan. Women who wed brothers, fathers, or clan kin offend the gods, and are cursed with weak and sickly children (III: 302)
  • The Thenns carry bronze-banded warhorns (III: 336)
  • The wildlings climb the Wall with the aid of hempen rope, queer boots of supple doeskin spiked with iron, bronze, or more usually jagged bone, small stone-headed hammers, stakes of iron and bone and horn, and antlers with sharpened tines bound to wooden hafts with strips of hide serving as ice axes (III: 337, 338, 340)
  • The Watch stumbles on climbers two or three times a year during its patrols, and rangers sometimes come across the broken bodies of those who had fallen (III: 338)
  • In the east the wildlings use boats to slip past Eastwatch-by-the-Sea and across the Bay of Seals, while in the west they descend into the black depths of the Gorge to make their way around the Shadow Tower (III: 338)
  • Young, green raiders will often steal a horse as soon as they've crossed the Wall, and the hue and cry that brings greatly increases the chances that they'll be captured and hung (III: 338)
  • Climbing even 500 feet of Wall is an exercise that can take most of a day (III: 341)
  • The wildlings have huge ladders of woven hemp that can be some hundred feet long (III: 341)
  • Wildling raids have increased over the last years as the Watch has grown weaker, and so the places nearest the Wall have been raided so often that people have moved further south into the mountains or into the Umber lands east of the Kingsroad (III: 453)
  • The Umber lands are raided by wildlings on occasion, but not as often as those who live nearer to the Wall in the Gift (III: 453)
  • Wildlings steal daughters, not wives (III: 462)
  • The wildlings believe that the gods made the earth for all men to share. When the kings came with their crowns and their steel swords, they stole it, claiming it was all theirs and theirs alone (III: 462)
  • Raiders do not cross the Wall to steal fish and apples. They take swords and axes, spices, silks, and furs, every coin, ring, and jeweled cup they can find, casks of wine in summer and casks of beef in winter, and they take women in any season to carry them off beyond the Wall (III: 463)
  • Every wildling girl learns from her mother that a man can own a woman or a man can own a knife, but never both (III: 463)
  • Wildlings fight like demons or heroes, depending on who you asked, but in the end it means that they fight with reckless courage, every man out for glory without discipline (III: 463, 464)
  • The wildlings know of the green men of the Isle of Faces (III: 466)
  • There are women said to be woods witches among the wildlings, and sometimes their sons and daughters are said to have gifts for foretelling the weather (III: 466)
  • Some wildlings have bronze swords (III: 469)
  • Wildlings from the Frozen Shore have raided Bear Island in the past, and there are wildlings who make a life of sailing the salt sea (III: 522, 719)
  • The wildlings believe it's bad luck to name a child before he was two (and sometimes older, if he is particularly sickly) because so many of them die (III: 532. IV: 523. V: 13)
  • Wildlings believe the Others and their wights can smell life, and that the newborn stink of life most of all (III: 533)
  • The wildlings are fair thieves but bad hagglers (III: 608)
  • The Magnar of Thenn has a long weirwood spear with an ornate bronze head, which may be a symbol of his rule (III: 621)
  • The wildlings make music with drums, pipes, and skins (III: 717, 720)
  • There seem to be many languages beyond the Wall, besides the Old Tongue of the First Men and the Common Tongue of the Seven Kingdoms (III: 718)
  • The wildlings have slingers (III: 720)
  • The wildlings have tools such as sledgehammers and long saws with teeth of bone and flint (III: 778)
  • Wildlings can quickly raise crude longhalls of logs and woven branches (III: 779)
  • Wildlings can make and use rolling mantlets, slanting wooden shields large enough for several men to hide behind, to protect their archers (III: 779)
  • Old women might drive about in dog carts while on the march (III: 834)
  • The Horn of Winter is huge and black, eight feet along its curve and so wide at the mouth that a man's arm could fit to the elbow. It is banded with old dark gold, more brown than yellow, and graven with runes (III: 836)
  • The wildlings have no trumpets, only warhorns (III: 840)
  • Raiding is a part of wildling culture, but martial discipline is largely unknown to them (SSM: 1)
  • Wildlings place importance in a man keeping word (SSM: 1)
  • The wildlings do note hate northmen as much as they hate the Night's Watch (SSM: 1)
3.4.1. Geography beyond the Wall
  • The forest north of the Wall is never allowed closer than half a mile, and is supposed to be haunted (I: 179)
  • Over the decades, the places which the abandoned citadels once manned have had the forest creeping in nearer to the Wall (I: 179)
  • Icy mountains rise west and north of the Shadow Tower (I: 372)
  • Beyond the Wall, in the haunted forest, there are groves of carven weirwoods left by the Children (I: 432)
  • One can find groves of nine carven weirwoods beyond the Wall, something which is unheard of south of it (I: 434)
  • The Gorge (I: 654)
  • There is a small village, consisting of four one-room houses of unmortared stone around a well and sheepfold named Whitetree which appears on old maps. Its name comes from the giant weirwood that is in its midst, its limbs pale and its face having a hole large enough to place a sheep within for a mouth (II: 150)
  • There are other villages south of Whitetree, at least three of them (II: 152)
  • North of Whitetree there's water, perhaps a lake. West of it are some flint hills (II: 152)
  • The "ranger roads" are game trails and stream beds which the brothers of the Watch who are ranging north use to lead them deeper into the north beyond the Wall (II: 153)
  • There are at least seven wildling villages between Castle Black and Craster's Keep (II: 260)
  • The Frostfangs are cruel and inhospitable, a wilderness of stone and ice (II: 275)
  • The Fist of the First Men is a hill that juts above a dense tangle of forest. It's windswept heights are visible from miles away (II: 371)
  • The Fist has steep bare brown slopes, knuckled with stone (II: 371)
  • The Fist's summit is crowned by a chest-high wall of tumbled grey rocks patched with lichen and bearded with moss. It is difficult to find a gap in the wall where horses can be led through (II: 371)
  • The Fist of the First Men is an ancient ringfort used in the Dawn Age (II: 371)
  • There is a brook at the foot of the Fist (II: 372)
  • For some reason, a direwolf warg refuses to enter the enclosure of the Fist, but domesticated animals such as a raven and horses don't object (but later caged ravens show disquiet) (II: 372, 374)
  • From the summit of the Fist, the Milkwater (a river) can be seen curving away to the south (II: 373)
  • Up-river from the Fist, the land is more rugged, the dense forest giving way to bare stoney hills that rise high and wild to the north and the west (II: 373)
  • The mountains in the northwestern horizon from the Fist are many, range on range of them fading into the distance, their jagged peaks always snow-covered (II: 373)
  • To the south and east of the Fist, the wood goes on as far as the eye can see (II: 373)
  • Pines and sentinel trees dominate the forest south and east of the Fist, but occasional broadleafs or weirwoods can be seen (II: 373)
  • The easiest road up to the Frostfangs (the mountains northwest of the Fist) is to follow the Milkwater to its source, but this path is very visible. Other paths into the Frostfangs include the Giant's Stair and the Skirling Pass, if it is clear (II: 374)
  • The Frostfangs are very cold, even in the summer (II: 374)
  • Not even wildlings dare live in the Frostfangs during the winter (II: 374)
  • For a sizeable host, the only way down from the Frostfangs is along the Milkwater (II: 374)
  • A fire lit on the summit of the Fist would be visible from the foothills of the Frostfangs (II: 375)
  • The Skirling Pass is more than two thousand feet above sea level. It is named for the keening sound the wind makes as it blows through the pass (II: 538)
  • By day the mountains are a blue-grey, brushed by frost. By night, they're black, unless the moon limns them in silver and white (II: 538)
  • The Skirling Pass is actually a series of passes, a long and twisting course that goes up around a succession of icy wind-carved peaks and down through hidden valleys that rarely see sunlight (II: 538)
  • Few trees grow on the slopes of the Frostfangs; those that do are stunted and twisted, growing sideways from cracks and fissures (II: 538)
  • Tumbled shelves of rock often overhang trails that make their way up the slopes (II: 538)
  • The Frostfangs have a diverse series of wonders. Icy waterfalls plunge over sheer stone cliffs, mountain meadows are filled with grass and wildflowers, there are ravines so deep and black they seem to go all the way to hell, and bridges of natural stone span distances with only the sky to either side (II: 539)
  • Above the treeline of the Frostfangs, particularly about the Skirling Pass, there is no grass with a few weeds and pale litchen clinging to life amongst cracks in the rock (II: 557)
  • A wind-carved arch marks the highest point of the Skirling Pass before it broadens and begins a long descent towards the valley of the Milkwater (II: 557)
  • From the top of the Skirling Pass, there is a hidden valley, long and v-shaped, amongst the mountains. A glacier of ice several thousand high plugs one end, squeezed between the mountains. Under that icy height is a great lake, its waters a deep cobalt that reflect the snow-capped peaks that surround it (II: 560-561)
  • The deep lake amongst the mountains is the source of the Milkwater (II: 561)
  • The Forktop is a huge mountain with jagged twin peaks in the Frostfangs (II: 562)
  • There's a path through the heart of the mountains, a tunnel whose entrance is hidden behind a twisting waterfall. The stony path twists and turns and goes up and down and at times is tight enough that garrons will become nervous (II: 693-694)
  • The path takes many hours to walk (II: 694)
  • The banks of the Milkwater are stony (III: 2)
  • The shortest way to the Wall from the Fist of the First Men is due south towards the Shadow Tower (III: 6)
  • The foothills of the Frostfangs are full of narrow winding valleys (III: 11)
  • There is a region named Thenn in the far north (III: 80)
  • The Milkwater passes through the heart of the Haunted Forest (III: 173)
  • Not far from the Fist of the First Men, the Milkwater grows shallow as it makes a great loop to the east (III: 176)
  • The south slope of the Fist of the First Men is the easiest approach (III: 176)
  • There's rough, hilly ground near the Wall between the Shadow Tower and Castle Black (III: 295)
  • Deep lakes stretch like long thing fingers along narrow valleys floors amidst the foothills of the Frostfangs, and flint ridges and pine-clad hills stand side by side (III: 295)
  • There is a vast network of caves near the Wall and the abandoned castles of Greyguard and Stonedoor. It's said one of the passages even opens south of the Wall that the wildlings call Gorne's Way (III: 297, 300)
  • Thenn is a little land, a high mountain valley hidden among the northernmost peaks of the Frostfangs, surrounded by cave dwellers, Hornfoot men, giants, and the cannibal clans of the ice rivers (III: 299)
  • Oak and ash trees can be found in the Haunted Forest, along with sentinels and weirwoods (III: 336)
  • The land west of Castle Black is rugged and wild, full of huge humped hills, high granites cliff, deep valleys, and so on (III: 336, 337)
  • The Gorge is very deep, and is used by wildlings to slip around the Shadow Tower in the west (III: 338)
  • Beyond Skagos is the Shivering Sea (III: 608)
  • The eastern coast has a hundred little coves where wildlings are wont to trade (III: 608)
  • Within the deep Gorge is a place called the Bridge of Skulls. Around it and below it are many rocks, and it stands over at least one pool of water (III: 780, 861)
  • The woods in the lands beyond the Wall are full of streams and lakes (V: 66)
  • No army could go west around the Wall because of the mountains and a deep river gorge. Only small groups of raiders ever filter through (SSM: 1)
  • Hardhome is the closest things the wildlings have to a city (SSM: 1)
3.4.2. Trade and Resources
  • The wildlings have contact with smugglers from the Free Cities and perhaps Westeros as well, trading goods in the little coves on the eastern coast along the Shivering Sea. They take steel weapons and armor in return for furs, ivory, amber, and obsidian (III: 608)
  • Chieftains and notorious men may receive tributes from villages and clans under their sway in the form of bread, salt, and cider (V: 9)
  • A dozen strings of amber and a pile of pelts might be traded for six skins of wine, a block of salt, and a copper kettle (V: 11-12)
  • Some Wildings could trade at Eastwatch, if they were welcomed as friends of the Watch (V: 12)
3.4.3. Kings-beyond-the-Wall
  • Raymun Redbeard once led the wildlings south against the Wall some 150 or more years ago, and before him there was the king Bael the Bard (II: 275)
  • Long before Raymun and Bael, there was the Horned Lord and the brother kings Gendel and Gorne (II: 276)
  • In ancient times, stories say that Joramun blew the Horn of Winter and woke giants from the earth (II: 276)
  • All the wildlings hosts that have attacked southwards have broken their strength on the Wall or by the power of Winterfell beyond (II: 276)
  • Bael the Bard is said to have made the song of the winter rose, recounting an adventure in his past. All the wildlings know his songs, which in general have maids falling in love with him all the time (II: 544-545)
  • Bael was a great raider before he was King-beyond-the-Wall (II: 544)
  • Bael lived in the time of a Lord Brandon Stark (known to the wildlings as Brandon the Daughterless), who had no other children save a daughter. The story has it that Bael seduced the daughter, who gave birth to a bastard son who eventually inherited Winterfell (II: 544-545)
  • The story says that Bael was slain by his bastard son, the young Lord Stark, because he refused to fight his own blood. Because of the kinslaying, the Starks were cursed; the story goes that Lord Stark's mother killed herself when she saw Bael's head upon Lord Stark's spear, and Lord Stark himself did not long outlive her when one of the Bolton lords skinned him (II: 545)
  • Wildlings do not name their kings "Your Grace". Most simply refer to them by name without title or style (III: 82)
  • Bael the Bard wrote and lived his own songs (III: 83)
  • The brother kings Gendel and Gorne existed some three thousand years ago (III: 300)
  • Gendel and Gorne are said to have led their host through the network of caves amidst the hills north of the Wall, exiting on the southern side. However, the Starks of Winterfell fell upon them then (III: 300)
  • Gorne slew the King in the North in battle, but his son picked up his banner and took the crown from his head, and cut down Gorne in turn (III: 300)
  • In the south it's said that Gendel died, as the Watch came to attack him from the north while the King in the North was to the south and the Umbers to the east. The wildlings say differently however, claiming he cut his way free through the Watch and led his people back north into the caves. However, it was Gorne who knew the caves best, and without him to lead them Gendel and his folk were lost. The wildlings believe that Gendel's folk never escaped the caves, but their children's children's children sob under the hills, and are always hungry for the flesh of men (III: 300)
  • Lord Commander Rodrik Flint thought to make himself King-beyond-the-Wall (III: 612)
  • It's said that Joramun joined forces with the Stark of Winterfell against the Night's King, the thirteenth Lord Commander of the Night's Watch. He was defeated and his name and all records of him were destroyed (III: 629, 630)
  • The Horned Lord once said that sorcery is a sword without a hilt. There is no safe way to grasp it (III: 836)
3.5. The Giants
  • In stories, giants are outsized men who live in huge castles, carried huge swords, and walk in boots that a boy could hide in (III: 166)
  • Giants are more bearlike than human, and as wooly as the mammoths they ride (III: 166)
  • Giants are perhaps ten feet tall, or twelve, but no more than fourteen feet. Their sloping chests might pass for those of men, but their arms hang too low and their lower torsos look to be half again as wide as their upper torso. Their legs are shorter than their arms, but very thick. They wear no boots at all, for their feet are broad splayed things that are hard and horny and black (III: 166)
  • Neckless, the huge heavy heads of giants thrust forward from between their shoulder blades, and their faces are squashed and brutal. They have tiny rats' eyes almost lost within the folds of horny flesh, but they snuffle constantly, smelling as much as they saw (III: 166, 167)
  • The hair of the giants cover them in shaggy pelts, thick below the waist and sparser above (III: 167)
  • The giants use clubs as weapons, most simply being the limbs of dead trees. A few have stone balls lashed to the ends to make colossal mauls, and some have huge stone axes (III: 167, 720)
  • Older giants have fur gone grey and streaked with white (III: 167)
  • Giants have huge square teeth (III: 167)
  • A giant's laugh is half belch and half rumble (III: 167)
  • The giants have no kings (III: 167)
  • Giant names are very odd. For example: Mag Mar Tun Doh Weg, which may mean Mag the Mighty (III: 167)
  • Giants have bad eyes (III: 167)
  • The wildlings have a song called "The Last of the Giants", which needs a deep voice to be done properly. It's a sad song bemoaning how men have come into the land to hunt the giants from their stone halls, with dogs and fire and sharp spears, and saying that because of them all the giants shall be gone (III: 175, 176)
  • There are hundreds of giants remaining, but there were once many more. Men killed them (III: 175)
  • In legend, Brandon the Builder was said to have had the help of giants in raising Winterfell (III: 461)
  • Giants are hugely strong. One alone is able to wrench great doors off of their hinges, twist off the heads of men with their bare hands even after taking many wounds, and wrench the bars of an iron gate apart (III: 723, 724)
3.6. The Others
  • The Others can move silently (I: 7)
  • With Others comes an unnatural and terrible cold (I: 7)
  • The Others are tall, gaunt, and hard. Their flesh is pale as milk (I: 7)
  • The Others wear armor that shifts colors; white as snow, black as shadow the grey-green of trees. The patterns of color move with every step (I: 7)
  • The swords of the Others are translucent, like shards of extremely thin crystal with a faint blue ghost light that seems to play around it. The blades are sharper than any razor (I: 7)
  • The eyes of the Others are a deep, inhuman blue that burns like fire (I: 7, 8. II: 272)
  • When steel meets the blade of an Other, a high keening sound almost beyond hearing can be heard (I: 8)
  • Steel begins to frost as it contacts the cold sword of an Other (I: 8)
  • The Others have their own strange language, and their voices sound like the cracking of ice (I: 8)
  • When steel meets the blade of an Other enough, it can shatter from the cold (I: 8)
  • When a man is slain by the Others, he can become a wight. One sign of this is eyes that have changed to an unnatural blue, as well as an icy cold body (I: 9)
  • Wights made by the Others have flesh as pale as milk, although their hands are black as if with deep frostbite because the blood congeals there (I: 464. V: 69-70)
  • The blood of wights turns into a dark dust rather than clot and congeal (I: 465)
  • Wights could be dead for days and have no stink such as corpses would have in that time (I: 465)
  • Animals; even worms and maggots; avoid the body of a wight. Neither horses nor dogs will go near them (I: 465)
  • A wight is strong enough to break a man's neck, turning the head around to face the wrong way (I: 472)
  • A wight is able to sneak up on a guard, turn a latch, and hunt for a particular person that it seems to remember from when it was a living person (I: 472, 473. II: 265)
  • Wights can seem dead by day but can return to animation in darkness (I: 473)
  • Cutting into a wight feels wrong, and it releases a strange and cold smell that makes on want to gag (I: 473)
  • Even if a limb is removed from a wight it is still animated (I: 473)
  • The unnaturally blue eyes of wights come from an equally unnatural frost that covers them (I: 474)
  • One weakness of the wights is fire. They burn as readily as dry wood and their skin melts away (I: 547)
  • Even with its head removed, a wight can continue fighting (I: 550)
  • Some wildlings believe the Others are gods, calling them the cold gods in the night and white shadows; they give up animals and even children to appease them when 'the white cold' comes (II: 271)
  • The wildlings call the Others the white walkers (II: 381)
  • Animals can be turned into wights (III: 202)
  • Wights can still be useful even if their flesh is rotted (III: 204)
  • The Others can ride wight-horses (III: 207)
  • Others appear to be very light, as their feet do not break the thin icy crust of snow (III: 207)
  • The swords of the Others gleam with a faint blue glow (III: 207)
  • Dragonglass is dangerous to the Others. When it strikes, it makes a cracking sound like ice breaking (III: 208)
  • The Others have pale blue blood (III: 208)
  • The blood of the Others will hiss and steam around black obsidian (III: 208)
  • The Others have bone white hands (III: 208)
  • Any of the flesh of the Others that comes in contact with dragonglass begins to smoke and melt away (III: 208)
  • The Others will melt and puddle, dissolving, because of dragonglass. In twenty heartbeats, their flesh can be gone, and the bones will melt away as well leaving only the lingering steam (III: 208)
  • The Others have bones like milkglass, pale and shining (III: 208)
  • Even after melting an Other away, dragonglass will feel freezing cold (III: 208)
  • Wildlings who sacrifice infants to the Others seem to believe that the infants are raised by the Others and come back to continue taking children (III: 380)
  • Wildlings believe the Others and their wights can smell life, and that the newborn stink of life most of all (III: 533)
  • Wights do not show fear when confronted with dragonglass (III: 534)
  • Wights are clumsy (III: 535)
  • When a wight is destroyed, the blue disappears from its eyes (III: 535)
  • A description of a strange woman that seems much like an Other or one of their wights, part of the legend of the Night's King (III: 629, 630)
  • The Others appear only at night (III: 838)
  • There is a suggestion that the Others are creatures of the God of Night and Terror who wars eternal against R'hllor (III: 868)
  • Tales claim that the Others come when it is cold. Some say that it becomes cold when they come. It's said they appear during snowstorms and mealt away when the skies clear, so that they hide from the light of the sun and emerge at night; although some stories claim that their coming brings the night. There are tales of their riding the corpses of dead animals such as bears, direwolves, mammoths, and horses, and that they also ride upon giant ice spiders. Tales also tell that those who die fighting them must be burned or their bodies will rise up as their thralls (IV: 80)
  • The armor of the Others are said to be proof against ordinary weapons and that their own blades are so cold as to shatter ordinary steel. They are said to be vulnerable to dragonglass, however, and fire is said to dismay them (IV: 80)
  • The last hero is said to have killed Others with a sword of dragonsteel (IV: 80)
3.7. The Old Gods
  • The gods of the North are nameless and numerous (I: 6. SSM: 1)
  • The First Men and their descendants in the north largely follow the old gods, which were worshipped by the Children of the Forest (I: 19, etc.)
  • Every castle has its godswood, at which the center is always a heart tree with its face (I: 19)
  • The places where carven weirwoods stand are sacred, and are not defiled by bringing animals such as horses into them (I: 435)
  • In the North, only a few houses do not worship the Old Gods, following the Seven instead (I: 476)
  • Beyond the Wall, the old gods are the only gods (I: 482)
  • The Blackwoods follow the old gods, and are one of the few southron houses to continue to do so (I: 661. SSM: 1)
  • Some men believe that it is impossible for a man to lie before a weirwood, because the gods will hear (II: 150)
  • Incest is a monstrous sin before the gods, but the Targaryens followed the practices of ancient Valyria and didn't answer to religions when it came to such issues (II: 364)
  • Even in the North, septons witness marriages (although this may not be the case if both parties follow only the old gods) (II: 384)
  • Marriages are also made before the heart trees (II: 384)
  • Old gods or new, it makes no matter, no man is so accursed as the kinslayer. However, there are degrees of kinslaying, and killing a distant cousin in the midst of a battle is much less of a problem than killing a brother in cold blood (III: 232. SSM: 1)
  • The old gods hold slavery as an abomination (III: 264)
  • The old gods are said to still linger at High Heart, keeping a red priest from looking into his flames and seeing visions (III: 492)
  • Among the wildlings, it's believed that when one dies, the old gods take the person down into the earth and into the trees, to be among them as they inhabit all things (V: 13)
3.8. Songs, Stories, and Legends
  • Giants are said to live beyond the Wall, and consort with wildlings (I: 12)
  • Ghouls are believed to exist (I: 12)
  • The Others are supposed to have lain with wildling women and brought about half-human abominations (I: 12. II: 274)
  • There are legends of pups being born after the death of their mother; it's seen as an ill omen (I: 15)
  • The Others are believed dead, gone for 8,000 years (I: 20)
  • Thousands of years before, Brandon the Builder had raised Winterfell, and some claimed he raised the Wall as well (I: 202)
  • A story of the Others and the long night before the coming of the Andals, and the last hero (I: 202-203)
  • The Others hate iron and fire and the sun, and every creature with hot blood in its veins. They rode pale dead horses, fed their dead servants on human flesh, and hunted maidens with packs as pale white spiders big as hounds (I: 203)
  • It is believed among the more learned that giants are all dead, like the children of the forest. The wildlings claim otherwise (I: 483. II: 381)
  • Giants are supposed to be as big as twelve or thirteen feet high, fierce creatures who are covered in hair and whose women are bearded like men. It is said the giant women take human men for lovers (I: 483)
  • The children are said to have once called the nameless gods to send the hammer of the waters from the Children's Tower of Moat Cailin (I: 498)
  • There are said to be ghosts hungry for southron blood around Moat Cailin at night (I: 499)
  • The Children are said to have known much of dreams, knew the songs of trees and the speech of animals, could fly like birds and swim like fish. Their music was so beautiful it would make one weep to hear it (I: 616)
  • A story of a brave and clever hero who was imprisoned in a castle by evil giants. He tricked them and escaped, but no sooner was he free that the Others killed him and drank his blood (II: 105)
  • Northern songs such as "Iron Lances," "The Burning of the Ships," and "The Bear and the Maiden Fair" (II: 238)
  • It is said that the crannogmen are cowardly and fight with poisoned weapons, preferring to hide from foes rather than give open battle (II: 242)
  • The song named "The Night that Ended," which deals with the Battle for the Dawn in which the Night's Watch rode forth to meet the Others (II: 242)
  • In ancient times, Joramun blew the Horn of Winter and woke giants from the earth (II: 276)
  • The maesters believe that all the giants are now dead (II: 325)
  • Beastlings and shapechangers are always evil in common stories (II: 383)
  • Giants, wargs, and worse things are said to live in the Frostfangs (II: 460)
  • There are foolish stories which say that the crannogmen have a boggy smell like frogs and trees and scummy water. Moss grows under their arms instead of hair, and they can live with nothing to eat but mud and breathe swampwater (II: 534)
  • Bael the Bard is said to have made the song of the winter rose, recounting an adventure in his past. All the wildlings know his songs, which in general have maids falling in love with him all the time (II: 544-545)
  • Bael lived in the time of a Lord Brandon Stark (known to the wildlings as Brandon the Daughterless), who had no other children save a daughter. The story has it that Bael seduced the daughter, who gave birth to a bastard son who eventually inherited Winterfell (II: 544-545)
  • The giants are said to speak the language of the First Men (II: 544)
  • Bael was slain by his bastard son, the young Lord Stark, because he refused to fight his own blood. Because of the kinslaying, the Starks were cursed; the story goes that Lord Stark's mother killed herself when she saw Bael's head upon Lord Stark's spear, and Lord Stark himself did not long outlive her when one of the Bolton lords skinned him (II: 545)
  • Giants do exist and are large enough to ride mammoths (II: 561)
  • Giants are too thick in the leg and hips to appear as men (II: 561)
  • It's said that direwolves once roamed the north in packs of a hundred or more and feared neither man nor mammoth. This was long ago, however (II: 654)
  • In stories, giants are outsized men who live in huge castles, carried huge swords, and walk in boots that a boy could hide in (III: 166)
  • The green men, the guardians of the Isle of Faces, are said to have dark green skin and leaves instead of hair, and sometimes they have antlers as well (III: 283)
  • In the south it's said that Gendel died, as the Watch came to attack him from the north while the King of the North was to the south and the Umbers to the east. The wildlings say differently however, claiming he cut his way free through the Watch and led his people back north into the caves. However, it was Gorne who knew the caves best, and without him to lead them Gendel and his folk were lost. The wildlings believe that Gendel's folk never escaped the caves, but their children's children's children sob under the hills, and are always hungry for the flesh of men (III: 300)
  • The wildlings believe that opening the graves of the dead releases their spirits to haunt the world (III: 341)
  • The wildlings seem to believe that the Horn of Joramun is buried in a grave (III: 341)
  • In legend, Brandon the Builder was said to have had the help of giants in raising the Wall (III: 461)
  • The Nightfort figures in some of the scariest stories of the North, although doubtlessly many of them are false. It was there that Night's King reigned before his name was wiped from the memory of man, and where the Rat Cook served the Andal king his prince-and-bacon pie, where the 79 sentinels stood their watch, where brave young Danny Flint had been raped and murdered, where King Sherrit had called down his curse of the Andals of old, where the apprentice boys had faced the thing that came in the night, where blind Symeon Star-Eyes had seen the Hellhounds fight, and where Mad Axe had walked the yards and climbed the towers to butcher his brothers in the dark (III: 624, 625)
  • The Rat Cook's children are believed to still be in the Nightfort, hiding from their father (III: 625)
  • The Rat Cook is supposed to be a white rat almost as huge as a sow (III: 628)
  • It's said that the ghosts of the seventy-nine sentinels haunt the Nightfort (III: 628)
  • Seventy-nine deserters once left the Nightfort to become outlaws. One of them was Lord Ryswell's youngest son, so when they reached the barrowlands they sought shelter at his castle, but he took them captive and returned them to the Nightfort. The Lord Commander had holes hewn in the top of the Wall and he put the deserters in them, sealing them alive in the ice with spears and horns so that they could face north; they had left their posts in life, so in death their watch went on forever. Years later, when Lord Ryswell was old and dying, he had himself carried to the Nightfort so he could take the black and stand beside the son he had loved (III: 628)
  • It's said that the ghosts of the seventy-nine sentinels haunt the Nightfort, but never leave the Wall (III: 628, 632)
  • The legends say that the Night's King was a warrior without fear, and when he saw a woman atop the Wall with skin as white as the moon and eyes like blue stars, he chased her and loved her though her skin was cold as ice, and when he gave his seed to her he gave his soul as well. He brought her back to the Nightfort and proclaimed her a queen and himself her king, and with sorceries he bound his Sworn Brothers to his will. For thirteen years he ruled until finally the Stark of Winterfell and Joramun of the wildlings had joined to free the Watch from bondage. After his fall, when it was discovered that he had been sacrificing to the Others, all records of him were destroyed and his very name was forbidden (III: 629, 630)
  • Some say the Night's King was a Bolton, or a Magnar out of Skagos, others say he was an Umber, Flint, or Norrey. Others still say he was a Woodfoot, who ruled Bear Island before the ironmen came, but others still say he was a Stark who was brother to the man who brought him down (III: 630)
  • The Rat Cook had cooked the son of the Andal king in a big pie with onions, carrots, mushrooms, lots of pepper and salt, a rasher of bacon, and a dark red Dornish wine. Then he served him to his father, who praised the taste and had a second slice. Afterward the gods transformed the cook into a monstrous white rat who could only eat his own young. He roamed the Nightfort ever since, devouring his children, but still his hunger was not sated. The moral of the story is that the gods did not curse him for his murder or for his serving the Andal king his son in a pie, for a man has a right to vengeance, but he was cursed for slaying a guest beneath his roof and that the gods cannot forgive (III: 631)
  • Legend says that the apprentice boys saw the thing that came in the night at the Nightfort, but afterward when they told their Lord Commander every description had been different. Three died within the year, the fourth went mad, and a hundred years later when the thing had come again, the apprentice boys were seen chambling along behind it, in chains (III: 632)
  • Tales have it that the heads of giants have been mounted on the walls of Winterfell in the past (III: 906)
  • Tales claim that the Others come when it is cold. Some say that it becomes cold when they come. It's said they appear during snowstorms and mealt away when the skies clear, so that they hide from the light of the sun and emerge at night; although some stories claim that their coming brings the night. There are tales of their riding the corpses of dead animals such as bears, direwolves, mammoths, and horses, and that they also ride upon giant ice spiders. Tales also tell that those who die fighting them must be burned or their bodies will rise up as their thralls (IV: 80)
  • The armor of the Others are said to be proof against ordinary weapons and that their own blades are so cold as to shatter ordinary steel. They are said to be vulnerable to dragonglass, however, and fire is said to dismay them (IV: 80)
  • The last hero is said to have killed Others with a sword of dragonsteel (IV: 80)
  • It's said that in ancient days, men of Skagos sailed to Skane, seizing all the women, killing all the men, and feasting on their hearts and livers for a fortnight. Skane has been uninhabited since (IV: 220)
  • It's said that in the past, during long, hard winters the old men who have lived past their years would announce they were going out to go hunting. Daughters would weep and sons would turn to the fire, but no one would stop them (IV: 326)
  • Stories claim that ghouls live beyond the Wall (V: 63)