The Citadel: Concordance

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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)