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Monday, 24 September 2012

Westeros and it's 7 Kingdoms

The Seven Kingdoms of Westeros
''King Tommen Baratheon, the first of his name, King of the Andals and the First Men, Lord of the Seven Kingdoms and Protector of the Realm"

Seven Kingdoms? . . . What exactly are the Seven Kingdoms of Westeros?


Whenever I tried to count up what I thought were the Seven Kingdoms of Westeros I always came up with nine rather than seven. I thought ''You have to be going wrong somewhere''. However what I was counting are 9 distinct regions of Westeros that were formed after the Targaryen Conquest

The title of Seven Kingdoms actually comes from the time before the Conquest when there were seven separate kingdoms. There are now 9 regions ruled under the one King.


The old Kingdoms were:

1. The Kingdom of the North
2. Kingdom of Vale and Sky
3. Kingdom of the Isles and Rivers
4. Kingdom of the Rock
5. Kingdom of the Reach
6. Kingdom of the Stormlands
7. Dorne

The "new" 9 regions 

1. The North
2. The Riverlands
3. The Vale of Arryn
4. The Westerlands
5. The Iron Islands
6. The Crownlands
7. The Stormlands
8. The Reach
9. Dorne

Seven of the above regions were former independent kingdoms before the Targaryen Conquest. Each region, except the Crownlands, is ruled by a Great House, who are commanded by the King on the Iron Throne, currently that is Joffrey Baratheon.


1. The North
Ruled byHouse Stark
Castle: Winterfell
Principal port: White Harbour
The North is the largest of the regions of Westeros, but also the least populated. This is because of the harsh long winters and long distances between holdfasts and towns. The North also includes the Wall and the lands administrated by the Nights Watch, which are technically speaking independent,but are almost always thought of in conjunction with the North. Bastards born in the North are given the surname "Snow"

2. The Riverlands

Ruled by: House Tully
Castle: Riverrun
Principle Ports: Seaguard, Saltpans, Maidenpool
The Riverlands are dominated by the mighty River Trident and it's many tributaries. The Riverlands, lying close to the centre of the continent have been the site for battles and conflicts throughout the history of Westeros. The Riverlands is one of the most fertile and most populated region in Westeros, which is one of the main reasons they are able to recover consistently from so many battles. Bastards born in the Riverlands are given the surname "Rivers"

3. The Vale of Arryn

Ruled by: House Arryn
Castle: The Eyrie
Principle Port: Gulltown
The Vale is dominated and mostly covered by the Mountains of the Moon and its its foothills. It's borders are prowled by hostile hill tribes.  Bastards born in  the Vale are given the surname "Stone".

4. The Westerlands

Ruled by: House Lannister
Castle: Casterly Rock
Principle Port: Lannisport
The Westerlands are famous for their hills and low mountains which are rich in silver and gold. They provide House Lannister and their vassals with immense wealth. Bastards born in the Westerlands are given the surname "Hill".

5. The Iron Islands

Ruled by: House Greyjoy
Castle: Pyke (located on the island of the same name)
Major Islands: Great Wyk, Little Wyk, Harlaw, Blacktyde, Orkmont, Saltcliffe, and Pyke itself.
The Iron Islands are rain lashed and cold. They are home to a hardy warrior race known as the Ironborn. The live for warfare and reaving and are the most troublesome and rebellious of the Iron Throne subjects. Bastards born on the islands are given the surname "Pyke". 
Pyke, located on the Island of Pyke
6. The Crownlands
Ruled by: Ruled directly by the King on the Iron Throne
Castle: The Red Keep
The capital city of the Seven Kingdoms, Kings Landing, is located in the Crownlands. The Crownlands stretch along the shores of Blackwater Bay and also across several islands in the Narrow Sea, most notably Dragonstone. The islands are separately administered from Dragonstone. Bastards born in the Crownlands are given the surname "Waters".

7. The Stormlands

Ruled by: House Baratheon
Castle: Storm's End
Important Islands: Estermont and Tarth
As the name suggests the Stormlands are subject to frequent storms off the Narrow Sea and experience significant rainfall. They are one of the most densely wooded regions of Westeros, particularly south of the Neck. As a result of this its climate is similar to that of a temperate rainforest. Bastards born in the Stormlands are given the surname "Storm".

8. The Reach

Ruled By: House Tyrell
Castle: Highgarden
Principle Port: Oldtown (Also a principle city)
Oldtown is the second largest city in Westeros. The Reach is the second largest region of Westeros. It is by far the most fertile and populated region. This allows the Tyrells to field vast armies and also results in them being wealthier than any other family, bar the Lannisters. The Reach also includes some offshore islands such as the Shield Islands and the Arbor. Bastards born in the Reach are given the surname"Flowers".

9. Dorne

Ruled by: House Martell
Castle: Sunspear
Principle Port: Planky Town
The people of Dorne are isolated from the rest of Westeros by the Sea of Dorne and the Red Mountains. This gives them a greater national identity than most of the other people of Westeros, save for the Ironborn and the Northmen. Bastards born in Dorne are given the surname "Sand".

Beyond the Wall

Beyond the Wall is a vast, snow-covered wilderness independent from the Iron Throne and separated from the Seven Kingdoms by the Wall. Inhabited by tribes of people known as wildlings who often attempt raids along the Bay of Seals or the Bay of Ice. Often for the same purposes the climb over the Wall.
The Eyrie, located in The Reach
Cities in Westeros
Cities are very rare in Westeros, because it is mostly rural-based populations. The 5 major cities of the continent are, 

Kings Landing: The capital of the Seven Kingdoms, population of half a million. Largest city of Westeros, founded by Aegon the Conqueror on the site he first set foot on, on the continent.


Oldtown: Oldest major city on the continent, located in the Reach. Almost as large and populated as the capital.


Lannisport: The largest city on the west coast of Westeros. It is about half the size of Kings Landing.


Gulltown: Main city and port of the Vale, has a population in the tens of thousands.


White Harbour: Main city and port of the North. Has a population in the tens of thousands.


Castles of Westeros

Castles are held by the noble houses of Westeros and range in size. Some are vast city-sized structures like Harrenhal or Winterfell and others are small towerhouses or fortified farmsteads run by landed knights. 

The size of a castle and in what state of repair it is kept reflects the wealth and power of its ruling family


Most notable castles of Westeros include;

1. Harrenhal
2. Storm's End
3.The Eyrie
4. Pyke
5.Riverrun
6. Winterfell
7. Sunspear
8. Casterly Rock
9. Highgarden
10. The Twins
11. The Red Keep

Westeros is pronounced as WES-te-ros as opposed to WES-ter-ohs.