The HBO hit series, Game of Thrones, which first aired in early 2011 was based on the storylines of the A Song of Ice and Fire book series by George R. R. Martin, set in the fictional Seven Kingdoms of Westeros and the continent of Essos.
Probably one of the biggest and most watched series of the decade, Game of Thrones was a massive hit from the day it hit the screens.
The story was set in the fight between the Nine Noble families for control over the Kingdom of Westeros. With such an intriguing theme, it was sure to mesmerize the audience as the fans loved it and the series gained massive popularity.
It was also scientifically proven that the show was indeed popular because the relationship and the way the characters interacted, very much portrayed the relationships and communication ways of real life.
The show after running for almost a decade finally broadcasted its final episode on May 19, 2019, and ended the show over eight seasons.
Even though the one-of-a-kind series came to an end, the hype that it created when it first released its first chapter never really left as people still talked about the series.
From dragons to the amazing storylines the series had numerous things to talk about. Among the various elements of the series, one thing that always piqued the viewers’ interest was the kingdoms in the series.
Even after the show, people are still very curious about the series as a whole. Well, it has been quite a while since the series ended, so there might be some of you who must have forgotten about it.
So, if we were to ask you how many KIngdoms were there in the series, chances are you probably must have forgotten about them. I mean- of course, the Iron throne and the Dragons did steal the limelight.
But if you are an avid fan of the series, you must be familiar with the Kingdoms of Westeros and even if you aren’t, worry not as in this article we have managed to gather information on every kingdom that existed in the series.
With so many elements and characters in the series, it is very difficult to remember everything. However, serving as an essential part of the series, the Kingdoms are very important.
So without further ado let’s get right into the mystical kingdoms of the series, graced by the great warriors and of course the mighty dragons!
The Seven Kingdoms
“The realm. Do you know what the realm is? It’s a thousand blades of Aegon’s enemies. A story we agree to tell each other over and over until we forget that it’s a lie.“
―Petyr Baelish to Varys, referring to the Iron Throne.
The Seven Kingdoms was the name given to the former realm, which controlled most of the continent of Westeros and its numerous offshore islands.
The Seven Kingdoms although contained many smaller parts and regions, it was ruled by the King of the Andals and the First Men from the Red Keep in the city of King’s Landings.
Each of the kingdoms had a very interesting name, which dated back to the time prior to the War of Conquest, during which seven independent kingdoms existed on the continent.
The War of Conquest, also called the Targaryen Conquest, was a major war initiated by Aegon Targaryen to conquer the continent of Westeros.
The name of the unified land was derived from the situation that prevailed three centuries ago when Aegon the Conqueror was set to unite the lands of Westeros, which was ruled by Seven independent realms.
After the conquest, the new kingdom was created and it was divided into nine distinct regions or provinces, although they were referred to as the Seven Kingdoms.
The realm actually contained seven different lands but after the conquest, the remaining two regions were formally established so they were not really considered Kingdoms.
However, even though not considered Kingdoms, the new regions including the other seven kingdoms were all subjected to the rule of the Iron Throne.
History of the Seven Kingdom
Westeros was a continent located in the far west of the known world. The whole Game of Thrones took place in Westeros. It was a land that was separated from the continent of Essos by the strip of water known as the Narrow Sea.
Before the conquest, the Seven Kingdom was the seven independent realms formed by the First Men thousands of years ago and was later taken over by the Andals during their invasion thousands of years later. However, they were not able to take the North and the Iron Islands.
The continent of Westeros was divided among the group of monarchs in the Age of the Hundred Kingdoms but was later got reduced into seven major realms.
Aegon I Targaryen, Lord Of Dragonstone, and his sister, Visenya and Rhaenys, invaded the continent and Aegon demanded the submission of the mainland’s monarchs so that he could conquer the lands.
Aegon began his conquest with the House Targaryen landing at the mouth of the Blackwater Rush and Aegon was crowned King of All Westeros at the Aegonfort.
Then he extinguished Harren the Black and House Hoare with the burning of Harrenhal, ending the Kings of the Isles and the Rivers.
After conquering the Riverlands, he handed it to the House Tully. Meanwhile, Argilac Durrandon, the Storm King, was killed in the Last Storms by Orys Baratheon in the Stormlands, with the House Baratheon replacing the House Durrandon.
At the Field of Fire, the Targaryen siblings used their Dragons; Balerion, Vhagar, and Meraxes—to defeat the armies of the Two Kings. With the help of their dragons they successfully conquered the Westor; except for Dorne.
Dorne refused to submit to Aegon’s Conquest and hence the Targaryens began the First Dornish War. The bloody war took the lives of Queen Rhaenys and Meraxes and even Orys was mutilated.
Despite all the Dornish castles being burned down using the dragon flames and Dorne being on the verge of destruction, the Dornish refused to surrender.
Later Aegon made peace with Prince Nymore Martell and Dorne remained independent thereafter.
The realm of the Seven kingdoms was fractured many times from years and years of civil warfare with the most recent one resulting when the Kingdom of the North and the Kingdom of the Iron Islands attempted withdrawal from the main power.
Jon Snow of the North pledged to Daenerys of House Targaryen while Euron Greyjoy from the Iron Islands allied with the House Lannister.
Even though the Lannisters and the Greyjoys betrayed The Starks and Targaryens, the Great War was won. However, the war for Westeros resumed and Daenerys and her forces took over King’s Landing at the Battle of King’s Landing.
However, Daenerys was later assassinated by Jon Snow so that more destruction could be prevented. The Great Council elected a new king, Bran I the Broken, who allowed the North to withdraw from the main power under Queen Sansa Stark, which resulted in the formation of the Six Kingdoms under the control of Bran.
So, now that we have discussed enough the Seven Kingdoms and their history, let us move right into the nine districts of the Seven Kingdoms.
1. The Kingdom of the North
The Kingdom of the North was the largest region in the continent of Westeros. According to the legend, the Kingdom was established roughly eight thousand years ago by Bran the Builder, who was the founder of House Stark.
He was the one who constructed the Wall as a shield against the possible return of the White Walkers. The North was the only region where the First Men were able to successfully resist the Andal Invasion, which occurred six thousand years before the War of the Five Kings.
On his quest to conquer Westeros, when Aegon landed in the North it was ruled by Torrhen Stark, also known as the King of Winter.
The House Stark had ruled the North since the Age of Heroes and the Long Night. The Stark family had a lineage that extended back to the Dawn Age and the First Men.
Among the firsts to bow down to Aegon and his Targaryen rule, The Starks was also the one. Torrhen Stark was remembered as the King Who Knelt, but he did keep his people safe, his family in power, and the North Intact.
The North was a powerful region and one of the principal regions of the Seven Kingdoms. It was under the rule of the Targaryen until the rule of Barn was established which allowed the North to secede from the power of Targaryen under the rule of Queen Sansa Stark.
The North was ruled from the castle of Winterfell by House Stark. Considered to be the poorest region of the Seven Kingdoms, it was the largest of the nine major regions of the continent, almost equal in size to the other eight combined.
2. The Kingdom of Vale
The Kingdom of Vale also known as the Kingdom of Mountain and Vale was one of the independent kingdoms, which was established in the continent of Westeros prior to the War of Conquest.
It was also better known as the ” The Vale of Arryn”, as it was a part of a more extensive holding known as The Mountain and Vale. It was also the place where the Andals began their invasion when they took over the continent from the First Men.
Ruled by the Arryn Family, who was one of the oldest Andal Lineages in Westeros, The Kingdom of Vale was ruled by the dynasty of the Mountain Kings.
Rather than fighting, the House Arynn, just like the Starks bowed down before Aegon. During the conquest, the King of Vale was a young boy, Ronnel Arryn. Hence, it was ruled by his mother, Queen Regent Sharra Arryn.
The Arryns came to power after the last First Men ruler of Vale lost to Ser Artys Arryn, who was one of the leading figures of the Andal Invasion. He was declared the King of Mountain and founded the House Arryn.
Later when Visenya Targaryen flew over to Vale and managed to bring King Ronnel into the laps of her dragon, Vhagar, it implicated a threat to the Queen that made her surrender the castle immediately.
Since they submitted to the Targaryens without any fight, the House Arryn continued to rule the regions as the Defenders of the Vale under the Targaryens.
In the A Song of Ice and Fire novels, the history of the Kingdom of Mountain and Vale is the same.
3. The Kingdom of Iron Islands
Governed by the House Greyjoy after the demise of House Hoare, The Kingdom of Iron Islands was the independent kingdom of the Iron Islands, which recognized the power of the Iron Throne.
The kingdom was located in Ironman’s Bay off the western coast of the continent of Westeros and was named after the Iron Islands.
It was ruled by the King of Iron Islands on top of the Salt Throne from their seat at Pyke. The king was chosen through a Kingsmoot by the lords and captains of the Iron Islands.
During the Andal rule, the Greyirons were overthrown by the House Hoare, who was aiming for the mainland, creating the “The Kingdom of Isles and Rivers,” with a planned centralized government run out of the newly built Harrenhal.
Harrenhal was famously completed on the day Aegon arrived and was the first castle his dragons burned to the ground. After the House Hoare was destroyed, Aegon allowed the Ironborn to hold a Kingsmoot.
After the Kingsmoot, Greyjoys got the victory. The island stayed neutral throughout the Targaryen empire.
The origins of the Kingdom were unknown but according to legend, it went through major reformations under the Grey King.
The Kingdom of the Iron Islands was ruled by the Greyjoys and they were named the Lords of the Iron Islands.
However, before the kingdom fell into the hands of the Greyjoys it was controlled by the Hoare dynasty who established the Kingdom of the Isles and the Rivers when he successfully conquered the Riverlands from the Storm Kings.
The Kingdom was later re-established by Balon Greyjoy during the Greyjoy Rebellion. Although the rebellion was defeated by the forces of the Iron Throne, it was restored once more by King Balon during the War of the Five Kings.
After Balon’s death, his brother, Euron Greyjoy was elected to be the king but was opposed by Balon’s last children, Yara and Theon.
With Euron’s death in the Battle of King’s Landing, Yara became the queen of the Iron Islands after successfully retaking the isles.
4. The Kingdom of Riverlands
The Kingdom of Riverlands was governed by the House Tully after the liberation of the Riverlands. Located roughly in the center of the continent, the Kingdom of Riverlands was an area constantly under dispute.
For a long time, it had been a frequent battleground in the civil wars that have afflicted the Seven Kingdoms and also in the wars that took place between the old nations of the continent even before the Targaryen Conquest.
Way before the Age of Heroes, The Riverlands was an independent kingdom known as the Kingdom of the Rivers and the Hils. During that time, the First men drove the Children of the Forest when they invaded the land.
In return, they were overthrown by the Andals, who fell to the storm kings, who lost their holdings to House Hoare.
Aegon’s conquest of Riverlands was assisted by a popular revolt led by the House Tully. So, after the invasion, they were made the lord of the Riverlands.
Since the Riverlands didn’t have a king at the time of the invasion, the Riverlands were not considered One of the Seven Kingdoms.
However, the Riverlands and their rulers were given equal rights for administrative purposes, just like other regions of the continent.
When the Targaryens invaded the Iron Islands, they burned down the Harrenal along with completely wiping out the Hoare family line.
Fearing the same destiny as the Hoare Family, Hosue Tully surrendered themselves to the mighty Targaryens and were named the Wardens of the Riverlands.
Regardless, much of the Riverlands armies were later annihilated by the Freys and Boltons at the Red Wedding, which led to the downfall of the once formidable Great House.
In the end, only the Tullys kept on fighting until Riverrun was taken by the joint effort of the Lannisters and Freys.
5. The Kingdom of Stormsland
Just like the other kingdoms, The Kingdom of the Stormsland was also one of the independent kingdoms of Westeros until it was conquered by Aegon.
The Stormlands lay directly to the south of the Crownlands and were ruled by the House Durrandon for a very long time.
It was founded during the time of the First Men by Durran Godsgrief, the first Storm King, who was believed to have taken Elenie, the daughter of the god of the sea and the goddess of the wind, as his wife.
The kingdom of Stormsland extended from the Vale mountains to Dorne’s marshes and west into the central plains of the Reach. However, over time, its border shrunk until King Argilac Durrandin barely held on to the Crownlands when Aegon arrived.
After the Andal Invasion, the Kingdom of the Stormslands came to be dominated by Andal culture although the Durrandon dynasty remained in power.
Unlike the other kingdoms, Argilac refused to kneel in front of Aegon and he stood unfazed in his decisions. However, a mere king was no match for the one with the powers of the Dragons as his forces were completely knocked out by Orys Baratheon, brother of Aegon Targaryen.
After the attack, The House Durrandon was not completely wiped out as Argilac’s daughter Argella, did survive. The Targaryens were very smart enough to use her to their advantage.
They forged a relationship with the House Durrandon by marrying their brother, Orys Baratheon to Argella so that they could use her to help legitimize the takeover. After marriage, their families were declared the Wardens of the Stormlands.
The territory was then ruled by the House Baratheon, which was formed by Orys although the Baratheons descended from the old Storm Kings through the female line.
6. The Kingdom of West
Governed by one of the strongest houses, House Lannister, The Kingdom of West or also known as The Westerlands was founded during the time of the First Men by House Casterly, the builders of Casterly Rock.
The Kingdom actually belonged to House Gardener until the Lannsiters tricked them into handing it over.
When the Andals invaded, the Lannisters sided with the Andals instead of fighting against them and tricked House Gardener into handing over the kingdom.
After the Andal Invasion, the Kingdom of Rocks was ruled by the Hosue Lannisters who descended from the Andal Invaders.
The Lannisters were also related to the mythic Lann the Clever, who according to the legends, swindled Casterly Rock from the Casterlys during the days of the First Men.
Trickery did run in their blood, didn’t it?
Until Aegon invaded the land, The Lannisters ruled over the Kingdom. In order to secure their position as the rulers, the Lannister King, Loren I Lannister joined forces with Mern IX Gardener, the King of The Reach.
However, even their joint forces couldn’t hold a candle against the Field of Fire. Mern was burned to death while King Loren surrendered and hence he survived.
The Lannisters survived the battle by quickly surrendering and with some smooth talking to Aegon, they were also able to keep their title as the Wardens of the West. After the fight, even the Westlands became a part of the unified Seven Kingdoms.
7. The Kingdom of Reach
Governed by the House Tyrell, The Kingdom of Reach was the second largest territory after the Kingdom of North. It was one of the administrative regions of the Seven Kingdoms and also was a fertile crescent because of its temperate climate.
Before Aegon’s conquest, The Reach was a sovereign nation known as the Kingdom of the Reach, which was ruled by the House Gardener, whose line went as far as the Dawn Age.
Since they shared a border with the Dorne, they always had disputes with the Dornish people for generations. The last of the line, King Mern IX took half of the Stormlands from the House Durrandon not long before Aegon invaded them.
After the conquest, the House Tyrell became the ruler of the Kingdom and ruled from the castle of Highgarden until it was sacked by the Lannisters and the rebel forces in the Sack of Highgarden.
After the battle and the ultimate death of Lady Olenna Tyrell, Aegon named House Taryls as the Warden of the South but kept a sharp eye on them.
The Tyrells never once openly put a foot out of place, but their ability to manipulate behind the scenes became well known.
The Reach although founded by the Gardeners, it was briefly controlled by the Lannister-Tarly houses before they were smashed in the Battle of the Gold road.
This left the region in a fuzzy state and without power. Ser Bronn of the Blackwater offered to join Jaime and Tyrion Lannister with the forces of Queen Daenerys Targaryen if he was to be made the Lord of Highgarden to which they all agreed.
Among the nine constituent regions of the Seven Kingdoms, Dorne was one of the most fascinating parts of the continent of Westeros.
It was located thousands of miles from Winterfell and The Kingdom of North and had a very harsh desert climate.
Dorne was a sovereign kingdom before it was invaded by Aegon Targeryen in his quest to conquer the whole of Westeros.
Although burned down and on the brink of destruction, Drone never bowed down and remained independent for a long time.
Nearly two centuries later, Dorne finally joined the Seven Kingdoms through the peaceful marriage alliance, only one century before Robert’s Rebellion.
Unlike other kingdoms, Dornish didn’t kneel down before the Targaryens as they had longstanding resentment of being driven from their ancestral home.
So, instead of kneeling down, they fought against the Aegon and even defeated him when he tried to take their lands. However later on the Targaryens conquered the Dorne through marriage.
Dorner’s rulers descended from The Rhoynar, who initially came to Westeros after the Valyrians, including the Targaryen family, drove them out from Essos.
Interesting thing was that this conquest was different than the rest of the conquests as it was just a migration followed by the intermarriage into the powerful Martell Clan, which formed the current ruling family.
These marriages began halfway through the Targaryen’s 300-year reign. The pact of Targaryen to Martell marriages allowed the Dornish people to keep their titles as the “Prince” and “Princess” whereas the intermarriage tied them closer to the Targaryens than any other kingdoms.
9. The Kingdom of Crownlands
Added as the ninth Kingdom of the Seven Kingdoms after Aegon’s conquest, The Kingdom of Crownlands was also like the Kingdom of Reach and the Riverlands, always getting into disputes and wars.
The Crownlands was an area between the Stormlands and The Riverlands, which quickly fell into the hands of the Targaryens when Aegon flow into the area known as King’s Landing.
The Crownlands was never a sovereign nation and was always sandwiched between the Riverlands and The Stormlands and other regions for thousands of years until Aegon the Conqueror invaded the place.
After his invasion, Aegon seized control of the area and made it his primary foothold on the continent. Instead of being ruled by Lord Paramount, the Crownloads were ruled directly by the monarch on the Iron Throne from the city of Kings Landing, which was the largest city in Westeros.
The Targaryens first settled on the island of Dragonstone, which was only a short distance from the Crownsland.
After the Targaryens established their first foothold on the continent of Westeros, they soon reamed the area as The Crownslands and declared it as the family’s personal holdings.
The Kingdom of Crownsland was a region carved out from the Stormlands and was under the direct rule of House Targaryen.
The Crownlands were politically divided into two areas; the mainland part, which was administered directly by the King on the Iron Throne, and the other offshore islands were under the authority of the Prince of Dragonstone, traditionally the heir to the throne.