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New WORLD OF ICE AND FIRE Chapter Highlights Westeros’ History

We already know what you’re going to say in the comments but we’re going to stop you right there. No, this is not a new chapter from The Winds of Winter, the latest installment in the Game of Thrones-inspiring novel series from George R.R. Martin, A Song of Ice and Fire. And no, we have no idea when that book is going to come out. Yes, we, too, wish GRRM would hurry up and finish the book already (we worry heaps about the show catching up to the books), but we are not his keeper. He is a grown man, after all, and can do as he pleases. So let’s just move on and be thankful for what we do have, which is this brand new chapter on the history of Westeros from The World of Ice and Fire, Martin’s documentation of the untold history of Westeros and the events that led up to the events in Game of Thrones.

In the chapter, appropriately titled “Aegon’s Conquest,” we learn about — wait for it — how Aegon Targaryen’s conquest of Westeros came to be. Here’s a sample:

… A common myth, oft heard amongst the ignorant, claims that Aegon Targaryen had never set foot upon the soil of Westeros until the day he set sail to conquer it, but this cannot be true. Years before that voyage, the Painted Table had been carved and decorated at Lord Aegon’s command: a massive slab of wood, some fifty feet long, carved in the shape of Westeros and painted to show all the woods and rivers and towns and castles of the Seven Kingdoms. Plainly, Aegon’s interest in Westeros long predated the events that drove him to war. As well, there are reliable reports of Aegon and his sister Visenya visiting the Citadel of Oldtown in their youth, and hawking on the Arbor as guests of Lord Redwyne. He may have visited Lannisport as well; accounts differ.

The Westeros of Aegon’s youth was divided into seven quarrelsome kingdoms, and there was hardly a time when two or three of these kingdoms were not at war with one another. The vast, cold, stony North was ruled by the Starks of Winterfell. In the deserts of Dorne, the Martell princes held sway. The gold-rich westerlands were ruled by the Lannisters of Casterly Rock, the fertile Reach by the Gardeners of Highgarden. The Vale, the Fingers, and the Mountains of the Moon belonged to House Arryn . . . but the most belligerent kings of Aegon’s time were the two whose realms lay closest to Dragonstone, Harren the Black and Argilac the Arrogant. …

You can read the rest of it on GRRM’s site, here. The World of Ice and Fire hits bookstores and Kindle October 28, 2014.

What do you think of the chapter? Find any illuminating or interesting details in the text? Let’s discuss them in the comments!

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7 comments

  • I wonder how long it will take before they start doing spin offs. There are some extremely interesting stories surrounding the history. Aegon is just one, I for one would love to see the conflict that made them erect the wall.

  • Never let it be said that GRRM doesn’t know how to build suspense for his next book. He’s even going backwards in time now just to keep us interested. I predict rioting at bookstores and Amazon.com crashing when The Winds of Winter is finally released.

  • There are already “spin-offs” that George has written as novellas. There are three Dunk and Egg books and one novella about the Dance of the Dragons. If you are talking about the show, HBO only has the rights to the story of ASOIAF, but they do also have the rights to the world of Westeros. That means no one else could possibly do any spin-offs except HBO, so you’d have to cross your fingers to hope they would buy George’s novellas.

  • The Long Night led to the building of the Wall.

    I honestly hope they just let the books and the show stand on it’s own. I don’t think Dunk and Egg have enough substance to carry a TV series–they could possible due a series of 1.5 to 2 hour specials that cover a novella or two.

    The strength in GRRM’s story is his characters and their developments. While his world building is incredibly well done and epic, it would be hard to just create spin-offs based on historical events. Look at his latest novella about the Dance of the Dragons–while very interesting and well done, I think it lacked the compelling nature that ASOIAF and D&E have done so well. So I would not wish to see it on the small screen. I wouldn’t trust others to do his character development for him in a spin-off series.