A Song of Ice and Fire/Characters/Independent Characters

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This is a listing of characters that appear in the Fantasy series A Song of Ice and Fire that are not affiliated with an organization or major House. Consult this page for the main character index.

Brienne of Tarth*

"She's the Hound with teats, or would be, if she had any teats to speak of."
Jaime Lannister, about Brienne

A woman who was blessed (or cursed) with being large, strong, and, above all, ugly. Honorable and stubborn to a fault, she's big and brave, even for a man. Because she could never have the role of a woman in this medieval society, she has trained as a knight but spends her time bumping against the glass ceiling. Often mocked as "Brienne the Beauty".

  • Action Girl
  • Attempted Rape: As with many of the other female characters in this series, this happens to her, but unlike them she doesn't need help to keep it to "attempted".
  • Badass: To the point that Jaime says a fight between her and Loras would probably end with them having to scratch Loras from the floor.
  • Beautiful All Along: Averted brutally. She attends Roose Bolton's dinner dressed in pink silk, and it makes her look worse. Even when Jaime visits her in Kings Landing, she's wearing a dress that actually fits and is of a flattering colour, which makes her look... plain.
  • Belligerent Sexual Tension: With Jaime.
    • And to a lesser extent, with ser Hyle Hunt.
  • Blue Eyes
  • Bodyguard Crush: Brienne has a long-standing crush on Renly, and she later wins a spot on his Rainbow Guard.
  • Bolivian Army Ending: The last we see of her in A Feast For Crows, she's about to be hanged by the Brotherhood Without Banners for refusing to kill Jaime Lannister; however the last thing she does is scream out a word - whether this will be her salvation or merely a Hope Spot is yet to be determined.
    • In A Dance With Dragons she's still alive and apparently luring Jaime into a trap, thought it's up in the air whether or not she'll betray him.
  • Combat Pragmatist: Despite having the strongest moral code and more devotion to the ideals of chivalry than any other character in the series, Brienne is surprisingly pragmatic in combat. She defeats Ser Loras in a mounted melee by tackling him off his horse. Later, when fighting Jaime, she uses the forested terrain to her advantage, and when he managed to disarm her she (successfully, until she was interrupted) tried to drown him in a creek.
  • Cool Sword: Oathkeeper, a Valyrian steel longsword, one of two that Tywin Lannister had reforged from Ice, the Stark greatsword. The blade is coloured with ripples of red and black, and the hilt is a golden lion set with rubies. It's so cool that it actually gets her into trouble--she keeps it hidden most of the time for fear of drawing bandits down on herself, and since it has several traits associated with House Lannister (rubies and gold, the red colouring of the blade, the absurd expense involved in producing it) when she meets House Stark supporters, they immediately distrust her.
  • Determinator: Deconstructed. Brienne never, ever gives up, not when she's trying to protect Jaime and not when she's sent out to find Sansa; not because they're what she wants to do, but because she promised to do them. She takes any failures very hard, even small or inevitable ones or ones she couldn't prevent (such as Jaime losing his hand), and by the midpoint of AFFC she flat-out admits that what she really wants is to go back to Tarth, and oaths be damned... but she can't, and she won't, because she swore an oath. She's increasingly psychologically drained and traumatised, and as of ADWD her obsession with doing the right thing and damning the costs almost lead to her death, because she couldn't lie to an undead crazy lady. Now she might be leading one of the only people who likes her into a trap because of same.
  • Enemy Mine: Initially, she and Jaime team up against the threats they face only because of this; however, they later grow to respect each other. He even compliments her, in his own way.
  • Failure Knight: Latches onto Catelyn after Renly's death.
    • And again onto her quest to rescue Sansa after Catelyn's death.
  • First-Name Basis: When she and Jaime first start travelling together, they address each other solely with insulting nicknames. Their increasing degree of respect for each other is shown as they move towards formal titles.
  • Foil: Set up as one for Jaime; both supremely confident fighters, but he is beautiful, wealthy, and privileged by his society while being a deeply unpleasant person, and she is horribly ugly, from a minor house of no great wealth, and gets pitied at best and assaulted at worst by nearly every authority figure she encounters while remaining the kindest, most honourable character of the series. Unusually for foils, they develop a strong bond and begin showing similarity to each other; Brienne's influence makes Jaime more honest and more likely to keep his word, while Jaime's influence was giving Brienne a much-needed dose of moral flexibility, though it may have been too little and too late.
  • Heroes Prefer Swords: Played with. She's certainly very proficient with a sword, but when given a choice of weapons (for example when fighting her third fiance and at Renly's tourney) she prefers maces. However, she adores Oathkeeper and uses it whenever she can do so without attracting unwanted attention.
  • Honor Before Reason
  • I Gave My Word: She's very big on this, and unlike most characters who've taken actual vows of knighthood, she means it.
  • It Was a Gift: Oathkeeper.
  • Knight in Shining Armor: Brienne plays this absolutely dead straight, and (thus far at least) has lived to tell about it. And in this story's World Half Empty, that is saying something.
  • Lie Back and Think of England: When she and Jaime are captured by the Bloody Mummers, Jaime warns her that they will try to rape her, and urges her to "go away inside" so she will survive rather than attempt to fight. She doesn't listen, instead biting off Vargo Hoat's ear (which soon becomes infected and drives him nuts), which contributes to his eventual death and results in him deciding to throw her into a bear pit, from which she is rescued by Jaime.
  • Lightning Bruiser: Jaime notes that she's one of the only fighters he's met who is both stronger than him and able to keep up with him in terms of speed and skill. When she fights defensively, it's described as being like there's an iron cage around her, and she can deliver incredibly powerful blows.
  • Masculine Girl, Feminine Boy: The Masculine Girl to Jaime's Feminine Boy.
  • Morality Pet: For Jaime, after his Heel Face Turn.
  • Named Weapons: Her sword is called "Oathkeeper", which given her personality, is entirely appropriate.
  • Nice Guy: With the exception of people who have murdered innocents, Brienne is polite, generous, and kind to everyone she meets, as well as being honourable and loyal. This being Westeros, it tends to bite her in the ass.
  • No Guy Wants an Amazon: Played straight, especially since she lacks the beauty traditionally associated with amazons. At one point there was a bet going on in Renly's camp over who could worm their way into her pants first. Only Jaime has shown genuine respect or affection towards her, and the scene in the Harrenhal baths hints that he is actually attracted to her.
  • Obfuscating Stupidity: A key part of her fighting style; she allows her opponents to overestimate her and waste their energy while she bides her time, fighting defensively and waiting for the perfect opening. She also considers invoking this trope in life at times.

That was what men wanted, wasn’t it? Soft helpless women that they needed to protect?

  • A Real Man Is a Killer: This was stressed in Brienne's training--her armsmaster had her work as a butcher's apprentice, slaughtering pigs and sheep--and comes up a lot during A Feast for Crows.
  • Samus Is a Girl: Because of her size, physique, and skill at arms, Catelyn initially assumes she's just another male knight before she removes her helm after winning the melee at Renly's camp.
  • Skilled but Naive: Her first on-screen action is defeating Loras Tyrell, and when she and Jaime duel he mentions that she's incredibly strong and tireless, though not quite as fast as he is. As of the fourth book Brienne is probably the most capable fighter of all the POV characters, but her status as a Wide-Eyed Idealist is not well suited to the World Half Empty she lives in.
  • Take Up My Sword: Jaime passes his quest to find Sansa Stark onto her after he's crippled.
  • Underestimating Badassery: She hates it when people do this to her, but encourages them to do it anyway, because it plays to her advantage in a fight.
  • Wide-Eyed Idealist: Brienne is very much like Sansa in some ways--she truly believes that knights and nobles are (or should be) chivalrous, and that people who make oaths will always try to keep them, among other things. Unlike Sansa, Brienne is entirely capable of beating seven shades of shit out of men who don't fit her ideals, and she wises up a lot faster. On the other hand, she is more bitter and cynical to start than Sansa due to the experiences of her life.
  • What Beautiful Eyes!: The one exception to Brienne's ugliness is her baby blues.
  • Wild Mass Guessing: Most people on this wiki (and, indeed, in the fandom) take it for granted that she and Jaime are falling for each other. Fans of the pairing will most frequently cite the Dream Sequences (in which the other character can be seen as incidental), the bathhouse sequence, and a few subtle hints, like Jaime referring to their duel as "chastising his wife" when asked about it, and Brienne frequently comparing her new companions in AFFC to the 'Kingslayer' in her POV chapters. What cannot be argued is that Jaime and Brienne deeply respect one another in way that others don't. Hence the shipping.
  • Will Not Tell a Lie: Scrupulously honest, but her contact with Jaime seems to have let her unbend a little. That said, when she does try to lie (for example when looking for Sansa) she's not very good at it, and the deception makes her unhappy.

Sandor Clegane

"There are no true knights, no more than there are gods. If you can't protect yourself, die and get out of the way of those who can. Sharp steel and strong arms rule this world, don't ever believe any different."

Called "The Hound," Sandor is the younger brother of Ser Gregor Clegane and the fiercely loyal bodyguard of Prince Joffrey. He is a badass but hideously scarred warrior with a brutally cynical attitude, and he hates his brother Gregor more than anything else. Built up in the first chapters as an unquestioningly obedient and sadistic enforcer of the Lannisters, he evolves into a very complex character. As of the end of the second book, he has ceased to work for Lannisters and has gone "rabid," wandering with no particular motive or allegiance. Despite his ugliness and callous behavior, he has deeply sympathetic traits. He currently has Unresolved Sexual Tension with Sansa. Arguably one of the most complex and tormented characters and therefore is very popular amongst the fans.

  • Animal Stereotypes: Sandor is nicknamed "the Hound" and is often likened to a mad dog. His helm is shaped like the head of a snarling dog, as well.
  • Anti-Villain: Type II.
  • The Atoner: If the gravedigger Brienne sees at the monastery is in fact him, he may be going in this direction.
  • Badass
  • Badass Boast: "Here's a brave man, baring steel on an unarmed captive. Untie me, why don't you? We'll see how brave you are then."
  • Beast and Beauty: Sandor and Sansa. Portmanteau Couple Name? "San-San".
  • Big Damn Heroes: Gets a couple moments, a bit ironically considering his abhorrence of heroics. The first comes with his rescue of Loras Tyrell from Gregor; the second, his rescue of Sansa during the bread riots.
    • Don't forget how he saved Arya's life at the Red Wedding, despite herself.
  • Blood Knight
  • Bodyguard Crush: Seems to be reciprocal. Sandor obviously lusts after Sansa and displays apparent genuine affection for the "pretty little bird" in his tender actions towards her. Meanwhile Sansa, as mentioned in her entry, is developing affection for him in turn.
  • Brutal Honesty: About the Crapsack World.
  • Cain and Abel: Gregor and Sandor. Even though Sandor is the ugly one, Gregor is definitely the (more) evil one.
  • Cynical Mentor: To Arya, briefly.
  • Dead Little Sister: One of the reasons why he hates Gregor is his murder of their baby sister.
  • Death Equals Redemption: Of the Unexplained Recovery variety, maybe. It's too early to tell, but clues on the Quiet Isle indicate that his Near-Death Experience has set him up for some serious Character Development. For one, he's living in a religious order when he previously disdained all gods, and there are definite parallels to be drawn between his situation and the Elder Brother's story about his own near-death moral awakening. The overall indication is that Sandor's on the path to becoming a more moral, less bloodthirsty person. Also fits with the lyrics of the hymn Sansa sang him in the second book and her prayer that the Mother find a way to soothe the fury in his soul.
  • Even Evil Has Standards
  • Emotional Bruiser: In public he's very much The Stoic. In private...
  • Good Scars, Evil Scars: Half his face is horribly burned, which makes him even more threatening.
  • Inferred Survival: The general consensus among fans; see Left for Dead below.
  • Jerk with a Heart of Gold: Zig Zagged, averaging about to a Jerkass Psycho for Hire with standards and Morality Pets.
    • One possible interpretation of Sandor is that inside, his natural tendency is to be a good person, who ultimately wants to be heroic and good to others, and disdains what he sees as the abuses and hypocrisy of people like knights. But because of the family he's from and his scars, he's been treated like and expected to be a callous villain his entire life... so that's what he became.
  • Kick the Dog: "He ran. But not very fast."
  • Left for Dead: A wound on Sandor's thigh festers, and he ends up too ill to stand. Instead of killing him as he begs, Sansa's sister Arya just walks away. While others have taken his distinctive helmet and get in Brienne's way -- she kills the outlaw Rorge who is disguised as "the Hound" -- she also notes a large man with a limp digging graves at a monastery...
  • Lightning Bruiser: Jaime notes that what makes the Hound so dangerous is not only his brutality, but the fact that he is far quicker than a man his size has any right to be.
  • Memetic Badass: In-universe. It helps that he's one of exactly four people to ever defeat the series' other Memetic Badass, Jaime.
  • Morality Pet: Has two -- Sansa and Arya Stark.
  • Near-Rape Experience: The perpetrator. He gets so far as pinning Sansa down on the bed, knife at her throat. Later he admits, "I took the song, she never gave it. I meant to take her, too." The fact that he starts crying both during the near-rape and when later admitting to it suggests he has some... mixed feelings about the whole affair.
  • Nice Hat: His most distinctive piece of equipment is a helmet shaped like a snarling dog. It's eventually stolen by the outlaw Rorge, which leads to Sandor getting blamed for several atrocities he didn't commit.
  • The Only One Allowed To Defeat My Brother: King Robert admits on his deathbed he was glad someone else told Sandor that Ned had sent forces out after his brother for this very reason. It was never confirmed, but the Hound indicated on several occasions that he was keen on the idea.
  • Pet the Dog: Several moments. Most notable are preventing Sansa from killing herself when she considers it, rescuing Sansa from the rioting mob, saving Arya from certain death at the Red Wedding, and actually crying while he threatens Sansa (and when he recalls threatening Sansa).
    • He also seems on the way to aproach Catelyn's death in a more gentle way, after seeing Arya's denial, but she cuts him short after a wolf dream.

Sandor: This thing about your mother...
Arya: It doesn't matter. I know she's dead. I saw her in a dream.

Ser Duncan the Tall*

A seven-foot-tall knight who lived many years before the events of A Game of Thrones. Ser Duncan is one of the stars of the Dunk and Egg short stories.

  • Celibate Hero: Less by choice and more by circumstance. Most noble ladies would never deem to lower themselves to being with a Hedge Knight. As a Kingsguard, he is sworn to celibacy.
  • Did Not Get the Girl: Applies to The Sworn Sword but also his later life.
  • Dumb Is Good: Duncan is not actually dumb. He is, however, completely uneducated and a simple sort to the majority of those around him (mostly educated nobles). He's also one of the most moral characters in the series.
  • Foregone Conclusion: Duncan eventually becomes head of the Kingsguard, one of the greatest knights of the realm. He also dies tragically in an attempt to hatch dragons.
  • What the Hell, Hero?: He tries this on his lord during The Sworn Sword after he finds out he's a traitor. Dunk gets an earful about the transitory nature of treason.

Davos Seaworth*

"It was just, what he did to me. I had flouted the king's laws all my life. He has earned my loyalty."

A smuggling pirate turned knight turned Admiral, Lord, and Hand of the King, sponsored by Stannis Baratheon. He turned straight by smuggling food into Stannis' besieged castle, earning him a knighthood for his service. Stannis also demanded that he lose the first joint off the fingers of his right hand to balance out his life of crime. He is often called "the Onion Knight," somewhat disparagingly, because he earned his knighthood with crates of onions. Despite his past, he is a loyal and honorable man, and a devout follower of the Seven. He mistrusts the sorceress Melisandre, seeking to counter her influence over Stannis.

  • Big No: He unleashes one during the Battle of the Blackwater when he realizes what Tyrion is about to do.
  • Brutal Honesty: He never sweetens his words, even in situations where it would benefit him. This blunt honesty is actually why Stannis values him.
  • The Consigliere: Stannis trusts Davos more than any other man because of his integrity and honesty.
  • Faking the Dead: Wyman Manderly staged his execution in order to appease the Lannisters and get his son Wylis returned to him safely. And also so he can track down Rickon Stark.
  • Happily Married: Davos doesn't see much of his wife, but he thinks of her with fondness, and is happy that his knighthood has supplied her and their children with a future.
    • Though he's admitted to cheating on her occasionally. But since infidelity is almost taken for granted in the setting (especially for someone like him, who's away from home so much), the fact that it's only "occasionally" still speaks to the fact that he'd probably rather be home with her.
  • Hero: In this Crapsack World, Davos is a shining example of a heroic character with his rescue of Edric.
  • I Owe You My Life: Not just to Stannis for not killing him, but because Stannis gave his family a future.
  • My Master, Right or Wrong: Subverted. He's not to keen on smuggling Melisandre to Storm's End but does it anyway. Nevertheless he has Edric Storm smuggled out of Dragonstone to save him from being burned alive as a sacrifice for R'hllor.
  • Never Live It Down: Most of the other nobles are determined to make sure that he'll never forget that he's not a "real" noble, having come from commoner stock. They call him "The Onion Knight" because he snuck onions to Stannis' starving army... and Davos, proving that he gives no fucks, made an onion his sigil.
  • Only Sane Man: He becomes this when the rest of Dragonstone is swept up in Melisandre's religious madness.
  • Rags to Riches: born in Flea Bottom, elevated to landed knight and ended up Hand of the King. And Lord of the Rainwood. And Admiral of the Narrow Sea..
  • Reformed Criminal: From smuggler to knight, and then lord, Admiral of Stannis' fleet, and King's Hand.
  • Tragic Hero: The deaths of his four oldest sons during the Battle of the Blackwater. Davos might be one himself, as there are rumors of his death in A Feast For Crows. Thankfully, it turns out that the rumours are greatly exaggerated.

Petyr "Littlefinger" Baelish

"I did warn you not to trust me, you know."

Son of the most minor lord in Westeros, Petyr is a charming, brilliant and extremely ambitious man. He was fostered at Riverrun among his social betters, and fell in love with Catelyn Tully, who did not return his affection. His impropriety got him humiliated in a duel and thrown out of Riverrun. Determined to climb the social ladder, Petry used his financial brilliance to become King Robert's Master of Coin and acquired a substantial personal fortune as well. Not content with mere riches, Petyr has become quite the Chessmaster. He works as the Man Behind the Man for many powerful players, but few seem to grasp the full scope of his own ambitions. Petyr is called "Littlefinger" due to his short stature and the small strip of land he inherited in the Fingers.

  • Affably Evil: Petyr is always charming, even when he's stabbing you in the back.
  • Big Bad: If anyone were to be classified as such in this series...
  • The Chessmaster: One of the biggest in the series, and that's saying a lot.
  • Chronic Backstabbing Disorder: And he'll cheerfully say so, too.
  • Creepy Uncle: Poor Sansa.
  • Deadpan Snarker
  • Dangerously Genre Savvy: Though he is absolutely willing to use the social advantages of his appointment as Lord of Harrenhal gives him, such as being able to marry a woman of high birth like Lysa, he is in no rush to claim the allegedly cursed castle.
    • He's also one of only two people from King's Landing who isn't blowing off these rumors coming from the east about dragons. (And the other--Varys--is marginally involved with them.)
  • Dude, She's Like, in a Coma: Littlefinger was subjected to this as a child, as Lysa decided to sleep with him when he was passed out from having drunk too much at a feast (and hallucinating), and on the brink of death with a feverish wound gained in a duel with Brandon Stark (and yep, you guessed it, he was hallucinating again).
  • Green Eyes
  • Love Makes You Evil/Stalker with a Crush: While he loved Catelyn, he still cooked a scheme that was going to, at the very least, put her and her family at significant danger, if not to destroy them outright, when he still mistakenly believed that Catelyn loved him in return.
    • Apparently, he's transferring his Stalker with a Crush tendencies to Sansa. It becomes a bit disturbing when A Dance With Dragons reveals that he actually approached Cersei after Ned Stark's arrest and asked to marry Sansa. And when Sansa was only 12, he made her very uncomfortable by looking at her as though she were naked. And then there's the whole Wife Husbandry that goes on later...
  • The Man Behind the Man: He was this to Queen Cersei and King Joffrey. He was also behind Jon Arryn's and King Joffrey's assassination.
  • Manipulative Bastard
  • Parental Incest: Weird case. He's not Sansa's father at all, but he's trying to make her pass as his daughter... while being attracted to her (and molesting her).
    • Sansa actually calls him out on this during the snow castle scene. She tells him he shouldn't kiss her like that, since she could've been his daughter. He responds that she isn't, and that she's so beautiful, so it's supposed to be okay. Or something.
  • Rags to Riches: While nominally a lord, Petyr's holdings are less valuable than most knight's keeps. He has no bannermen, and his grandfather was a landless sellsword from Braavos, for which he's looked down on with contempt by the more ancient Houses. However, Petyr is a wizard with finance, and has acquired quite a lot of money for himself before and while acting as the Master of Coin. His aid to King Joffrey gets him named not only Lord of Harrenhal but also Lord Paramount of the Riverlands. And by his marriage to Lysa Tully he winds up as Lord Protector of the Vale.
  • Self-Made Man: From a poor noble to one of the puppeteers in the Westerosi court.
  • Shmuck Bait: One of the few examples of human Shmuck Bait, since at least a few people know he is untrustworthy.
  • Sleazy Politician
  • Spanner in the Works: Although not a huge one, it appeared Littlefinger was as surprised as everyone else when Joffrey decided to execute Eddard Stark instead of sending him to the Wall. Cersei is another one, due to her excessive stupidity causing events to move much faster than he'd intended. He rolls with it though.
  • Start of Darkness: Probably when he was a child, after being almost killed by Brandon Stark, rejected by Catelyn and exiled back to his dreary home on The Fingers.
  • Trickster Mentor: He is training his new protégé Sansa Stark (renamed Alayne Stone, masquerading as Littlefinger's illegitimate daughter) to start following in his manipulative footsteps.
  • Unlucky Childhood Friend: To Catelyn. Lysa was this to him.
  • Used to Be a Sweet Kid: Catelyn's narration indicates that she has fond memories of Petyr, describing him as having been mischievous and bold as a child.
  • Wife Husbandry: seems to be engaging in a little of this on the side with Sansa.
  • Xanatos Speed Chess: Petyr works to foment chaos and flux, trusting in his ability to capitalize on opportunities as they present themselves.
  • Yandere: Although he is more on the ruthlessly intelligent and subtle side, this has become the only indication of how truly unhinged he really is.
  • You Have Outlived Your Usefulness: Littlefinger is the mastermind behind the assassination of King Joffrey, in conjunction with Lady Olenna. He also pulls it on Ser Dontos Hollard, whom he used in order to pretty much kidnap Sansa. His dispatch of Lysa Tully is much more on the fly and he was doing it at least partly to keep Sansa safe, but the sentiment is definitely there.


"The storms come and go, the waves crash overhead, the big fish eat the little fish, and I keep on paddling."

An eunuch and master of spies, no one really knows who Varys is. Although he is one of the King's advisors, he is the most mysterious member of the Westerosi government - and in some cases, he is the government. He is the grand puppeteer of Westeros, and openly admits it. Unlike others who manipulates people for their own gain, Varys has much, much greater goals that are still unknown, though he claims he acts "for the Realm." While Littlefinger is sneaky and clever, Varys is deceptive and downright scary. He conducts himself almost in a child-like behavior, but the one asset he possesses - information on everyone - is so important that he is often more powerful than the King.

  • Ambiguously Evil: Claims to have the realm's best interests at heart, but is no stranger to morally questionable acts. What he wants and why is still a mystery. We do have some clues from the most recent book, though; what he seems to want is a king who actually puts his people first - and he appears to have fashioned one, in the form of Prince Aegon.
    • If you actually believe what his his knife-twisting speech to Kevan contained any truth. And frankly Prince Aegon, while more capable than, say, Viserys was, already shows disturbing signs of massive self-entitlement and petty spitefulness.
      • The man isn't a Bond villain. He had no reason to lie to someone he was going to make very sure was dead, as opposed to just leaving them alone in an overly elaborate deathtrap.
  • Animal Stereotypes: He's called "The Spider", for his vast intelligence network and how he manages to learn most, if not all, of other players' secrets he knows all of the Red Keep's secret passages and uses them to spy on others.. Like spiders, he's noted for not making noise while walking.
  • Apologetic Attacker: a little bit in his dialogues with Eddard Stark, but most definitely in the epilogue of ADWD.
  • Batman Gambit: Varys claims he tries to protect the realm from its rulers, and it was him who kept the incompetent King Robert alive for so long because he knew that Cersei and Joffrey were much worse. However, he has been making another plan - to return the Targaryens to the throne. In Dance Illyrio reveals that Varys used to be a thief, stealing something and then selling the object back to its owner. It's very possible that Varys is doing the same thing to the Targaryens, but on a national scale.
    • And now it appears he's had another gambit going ever since the Targaryens fell, as his plans for Prince Aegon have been revealed.
  • The Chessmaster: He's an one-man secret government cabal.
  • Determinator: There's a little of this in Varys: after the sorcerer castrated him, "...the man had no further interest in me, so he put me out. When I asked him what I should do now, he answered that he supposed I should die. To spite him, I resolved to live."
  • Eunuchs Are Evil: Most of the characters see him like this. Whether he's truly evil remains to be seen.
  • Evil Chancellor: A strange subversion, since it's unclear if he is good or evil.
  • Government Conspiracy
  • Hannibal Lecture: He is fond of giving these to any protagonist who has to deal with him.
    • In a rare moment of honesty, Varys tells Eddard Stark that he serves the realm and despises the nobility for being spoiled fools with too much power and too little consideration for the commoners (99% of Westeros' population) who are always massacred during their power struggles. He essentially gave Eddard a reverse Hannibal Lecture by letting him know that his lofty ideals of "honor" are a pleasure only the high lords could care about.
      • Considering that he was one of the masterminds behind the civil war and planned, at the very least, to unleash a horde of savage conquerors on Westeros, just to put the old dynasty back in power - never mind possibly being one of the people responsible for fall of Targaryens in the first place, by encouraging Aerys' paranoia - while engineering morally dubious manipulation of Targaryen pretenders, if not even creating a false heir, that's not so much "a moment of honesty" as a calculated attempt to break Eddard.
  • Knowledge Broker: Varys has no lands or wealth of his own, but his information network makes him one of the most influential people in Westeros.
  • Manipulative Bastard: God yes. May even be better at it then Littlefinger.
  • Master of Disguise: A Master Actor variety, possibly the result of his supposed past as a mummer. Varys normally plays up his effeminacy, and so when he changes his clothing, aroma and voice tone, no one who knows him can recognize him. Apparently, he's also Rugen, one of the jailors in the Red Keep.
  • The Needs of the Many: Claims to serve "the realm."
  • Nothing Personal: The number of people he screws over that would fall under this are many: The stability of the realm is his goal, and many otherwise decent people end up on his bad side because of it. He uses the line on Kevan Lannister.
  • Poetic Serial Killer: At the end of ADWD, when we see a rare glimpse of what he really is.
  • Put on a Bus: Doesn't appear at all in A Feast For Crows. Does appear in the epilogue of A Dance with Dragons, and what an appearance!
  • Psychopathic Manchild: His "smooth cheeks" and baby face are described extensively, as is his frequent giggling. That covers the "Man Child" aspect. As for the "psychopathic" bit, killing Kevan Lannister - with an army of knife-wielding orphans! - and slitting Maester Pycelle's throat for...the greater good? So he's more Hannibal Lecter than Kharn the Betrayer but he's still a psycho.
  • Self-Made Man
  • Silk Hiding Steel
  • Sissy Villain: When it's The Not-Secret that you literally aren't packing any balls under that fancy robe, why bother to hide it? Subverted, of course. See "Determinator" above.
  • The Spymaster
  • Stepford Smiler: Nobody really knows what he's hiding under his giggly, man-child appearance. Heck, just look at everything that's spoilered out!
  • The Strategist: He can get his own hands dirty, but his Creepy Children a.k.a. "Little Birds" do most of the slicing and dicing.
  • Well-Intentioned Extremist: Or so you're led to believe.


"I sell my sword, I don't give it away. I´m not your bloody brother."

A skilled mercenary and canny opportunist who first entered the series as a thug hired by Catelyn Stark to arrest Tyrion and take him to his execution. Bronn soon swaps loyalties and becomes Tyrion's paid enforcer and assassin for the first three books of the series; once his star rises even higher, he leaves Tyrion behind. While the series is only half over, thus far Bronn is only character other than Littlefinger to end each book in a better position than he started.

  • Ascended Extra: comes out of the woodwork during the first book.
  • Badass
  • Combat Pragmatist: Bronn fights completely without chivalry, often gaining the advantage on knights who expect him to fight in the style of jousts and melees.
  • Deadpan Snarker
  • The Dragon: To Tyrion.
  • Ironic Echo: In A Clash Of Kings, Tyrion, having been asked to attend dinner with Lady Tanda who hopes to wed her daughter Lollys to the dwarf, sardonically asks Bronn to attend in his stead and wed Lollys himself. Guess what happens in the next book.
  • Only in It For the Money
  • Private Military Contractors: Is one.
  • Professional Killer: And a very good one.
  • Refuge in Audacity: At a time when it would be political suicide to do so, the newly ennobled Bronn names his son Tyrion. And gets away with it.
  • Screw This, I'm Outta Here: Mostly abandons Tyrion after the Battle of the Blackwater, due to gaining a knighthood, a keep and a noble wife.
  • Self-Made Man
  • Would Hurt a Child: Tyrion, somewhat disgusted after learning a member of the goldcloaks killed one of Robert's infant bastards, asks Bronn if he would kill a baby without question. Bronn firmly replies that he would not; he'd make sure to negotiate a good price for it first.

Ser Barristan Selmy*

Known as "The Bold" after sneaking into a tournament and winning a joust against the Prince of Dragonflies whilst all of ten years old, Barristan Selmy is one of the most renowned knights in the Seven Kingdoms. At the start of the series, he is the Lord Commander of the Kingsguard.

  • Celibate Hero
  • Cool Old Guy: How old? He was knighted by Egg when Egg was king, and named to the Kingsguard by Egg's younger son Jaehaerys.
  • Defector From Decadence: Played with. Fought for Mad Aerys during the war, but was pardoned by Robert.
    • Played more straight after he's dismissed from the Kingsguard and decides to seek the true king of Westeros. A book later, he shows up near Daenerys...
  • Honor Before Reason: He is a knight of the Kingsguard. In his mind, his vow to the King took precedence over everything else, to the point that he carries a major grudge against Jamie for murdering Aerys, even though they both witnessed Aerys' depravities firsthand; they had sworn to protect him and therefore Jamie betrayed his oath. Later he does, however, subvert this when the fate of Meereen rests in his hands. He's served three kings and one queen and, in doing so, has seen the tragedies that clinging to one's honor creates, so he takes a more pragmatic route.
  • I Let Gwen Stacy Die: At the beginning of the series, he has seen three kings come and go, and this weighs on his mind.
  • Irony: Openly criticized Jaime Lannister for killing King Aerys, it is later revealed, that as of lately, he has been pondering if maybe Jaime was right all along. The irony is not lost on him either.
  • Knight in Shining Armor: Played straight.
  • The Magnificent: Got his nickname when he entered a tourney as a mystery knight at age 10. He failed miserably, but Prince Duncan was impressed with his spirit nonetheless: "A boy... a bold boy."
  • Master Swordsman: Even though he's over 60.
  • My Greatest Failure: Aside from surviving three kings he swore to protect, he actually starts to doubt whether he did the right thing by saving Aerys when he was a prisoner in Duskendale, ponders whether Jamie was right in killing Aerys, but most importantly, he regrets losing to Rhaegar in a jousting tournament, which kick-started the events that led to Robert's Rebellion.
  • Old Master: In ADWD, he has found some promising students.
  • Stealth-Based Mission: One of his claims to fame is ending the Defiance of Duskendale by sneaking into town, freeing King Aerys from imprisonment, and getting out again.

Lord Jon Connington*

A close friend of Rhaegar's, Connington was picked to be Hand of the King after Tywin Lannister resigned the position. He failed to end Robert's Rebellion and was exiled for that mistake. And he was never heard from again, though other characters mention him on occasion. You'd think he was being set up for something...

  • Dangerously Genre Savvy: Whenever he launches his attack against Griffin's Roost, the first thing he does is make sure his archers take out any source of information leaking out to the Iron Throne (namely ravens). Whenever the ravens keep on coming, he kills the source of the source (the Maester). The Golden Company takes Griffin's Roost losing less than five men.
  • Dead Man Walking: Contracted the greyscale while saving Tyrion from the stone men, near the Sorrows. He has kept this a secret so far.
  • Failure Knight
  • Like a Son to Me: little Aegon.
  • Ho Yay: towards Rhaegar. Confirmed by GRRM.
  • Meaningful Name: goes by "Griff" when Tyrion meets him in A Dance with Dragons, referring to the heraldry of House Connington--a griffin.
  • Secretly Dying
  • Your Days Are Numbered

Ser Jorah Mormont

Ser Jorah Mormont is an exiled knight who was once the head of House Mormont and lord of Bear Island. He fled Westeros to escape execution for trading in slaves, and entered the service of the last Targaryens. He becomes one of the most trusted companions of Daenerys Targaryen. Generally a reasonable and decent man driven to doing foolish things by love. It doesn't end well for him and Daenerys. She finds out about his spying (albeit only because he wanted to see his homeland again. Seems mighty determined to get back to her though.

  • Animal Motif: Mormont, just like the rest of his family, is constantly associated with the bear.
  • Bald of Awesome: see Badass.
  • Badass: His fight with Qotho
  • Call It Karma: In the past, he sold poachers into slavery when short on funds. In A Dance With Dragons, Jorah is Made a Slave.
  • Deadpan Snarker: actually supplies the current page quote for the trope in the Literature section.
  • Jerkass: has his moments.
  • Mr. Exposition: He seems to know a lot about every strange culture Daenerys encounters, and takes the time to educate her (and the reader). In-universe this isn't unreasonable, as he left the Seven Kingdoms years prior and has lived all over the place as a sell-sword.
  • Title Drop: "It is no matter to [the people] if the high lords play their game of thrones, so long as they are left in peace. They never are."
  • Bodyguard Crush: With Daenerys. Doesn't end well.
  • Failure Knight
  • Genius Bruiser: a capable and intelligent knight. Unfortunately, the below trope also applies...
  • Love Makes You Dumb: Generally a knowledgeable, reasonable, and insightful person, it all goes out the window in his desperation to make Lynesse (later, Daenerys) love him.
  • Gold Digger: Lynesse Hightower, his second wife.
  • The Mole
  • Private Military Contractors: He becomes a sellsword after losing his small fortune and his second wife.
  • Replacement Goldfish: Fandom is divided on whether he is thinking of Daenerys as a replacement for Lynesse, or whether all along he wanted a woman like Daenerys and mistook Lynesse as his ideal woman. Definitely done with a beautiful silver-haired whore, whom Jorah has sex with after being banished by Dany and falling into despair.

Lord Janos Slynt

Janos Slynt is the commander of the King's Landing City Watch. The son of a butcher, Slynt's true loyalties lie with whoever pays his salary. Which is actually Littlefinger. By fifth book he gets Killed Off for Real.

  • The Brute: In Littlefinger's plot to betray Ned.
  • Dirty Cop: Known for taking bribes and selling positions and promotions. Half the officers paying him part of their salaries.
  • Meaningful Name: Janos sounds a lot like Janus, the two-faced Roman God.
  • Nouveau Riche: He's raised to lordship and given the ancient castle of Harrenhal. for betraying Ned Stark Nevertheless, he stills eats, drinks and speaks like a commoner.
  • Fatal Flaw: Believing himself untouchable because he has "powerful friends" (the Lannisters), which in means squat in the Wall.
  • Punch Clock Villain: When compared with the likes of King Joffrey, Queen Cersei, Littlefinger.
  • Rags to Riches: From son of a butcher to lord.
  • Reassigned to Antarctica: Tyrion sends him to the Wall after learning that he had sent one his men to execute a bastard baby of King Robert and her mother and that he had played a part in the execution of Ned Stark.
  • Smug Snake: Thinks really high of himself because he has attained lordship and a seat in the small council. His smugness leads him to openly defy his Lord Commander before the entire Night's Watch. He gets sentenced and beheaded by Jon Snow, the son of the man he had betrayed, for disobedience. It also doubles as Karmic Death.



A lovable simpleton stableboy for the Starks, he is tasked with carrying Bran around and continues to fulfill this role as Bran travels beyond the Wall.


A red priest with strong prophetic skills. Tyrion meets him on board the ship the Selaesori Qhoran. Later on, after the ship meets an unfortunate fate (which he saw in the flames but didn't tell anyone), he is found alive, floating on driftwood by Victarion and his crew.

  • Cunning Linguist
  • Ethnic Magician
  • Genius Bruiser: He's over six feet tall and has a rock hard stomach, but has also learned to speak Common Tongue fluently with almost no accent, and is a talented linguist of the Valyrian language. Not to mention his magical skills.
  • Heal It with Fire: Heals Victarion's diseased hand this way, granting him a super-strong "volcanic" arm.
  • Poisonous Friend: Becomes one to Victarion. Just like Melisandre does to Stannis, his advice often involves suggestions to burn people.
  • Religion Is Magic: As a priest of R'hllor he has powers similar to Melisandre. He can see the future in flames, and he survives for several days floating in the open ocean clinging to flotsam, with no food or water, after the ship he was on was destroyed in a storm.
  • Scary Black Man: Due to a combination of being tall and bulky and having creepy magical abilities, the Ironborn he meets up with are quite frightened of him.

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