Fighting at the fords of the Trident

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Fighting at the fords of the Trident
Conflict War of the Five Kings
Date 299 AC
Place ruby ford of the Trident in the riverlands
Result Lannister victory
House Lannister House Stark
Ser Gregor Clegane Lord Roose Bolton
Ser Wylis Manderly
Unknown 6,100[1]
Unknown 2,000[1] dead, captive or fled, of Houses Norrey, Locke, Manderly, and Burley.[2]

The fighting at the fords of the Trident[3] is one of the final actions in the War of the Five Kings. The rearguard of Lord Roose Bolton's northern army is attacked while crossing the Trident by Lannister forces led by Ser Gregor Clegane.


Roose Bolton marches from Harrenhal towards the Twins for the wedding of Lord Edmure Tully and Roslin Frey, Roslin's kinsman Aenys Frey having already made a difficult crossing of the ruby ford several days earlier. Once Roose reaches the Trident, torrential rains make fording impossible and the northmen are forced to use small boats to cross. Bolton has gotten two-thirds of his force across by the time Ser Gregor Clegane arrives. Those still waiting to cross are primarily from Houses Burley, Locke, and Norrey, with knights from White Harbor serving as rear guard under command of Ser Wylis Manderly.[2]

Gregor attacks the northern rear guard with heavy cavalry. Wylis rallies as best as he can, but the two thousand[1] men who have yet to cross are forced into the river. Many are killed, either drowning in the river or cut down by the Mountain's men. Some northmen are able to flee, but others are taken captive, including Wylis.[2]


Roose Bolton, unable to aid the men across the ford, continues on to the Twins, leaving behind six hundred men—spearmen from the Rills, the mountains, and the White Knife, a hundred longbow archers from House Hornwood, some freeriders and hedge knights, and some Stout and Cerwyn men—under the command of Ronnel Stout and Ser Kyle Condon to prevent Gregor from crossing the Trident. Remaining with Roose are five hundred mounted men and three thousand infantry, mostly from House Bolton with some Karstark presence.[2]

Once at the Twins, the Boltons betrays House Stark in the Red Wedding.[4] The ruby ford may therefore have been a calculated move by Lord Bolton to bleed Stark supporters to prevent them from retaliating once he turned cloak. It is also reported after the Red Wedding that Gregor has seized the ruby ford.[5] Wylis Manderly and other highborn northern hostages are held at Harrenhal.[3]

References and Notes

  1. 1.0 1.1 1.2 Roose and his men had been crossing the Trident when they came under attack by Gregor Clegane; At the time of the attack, two-thirds of Roose's men had been across of the river. These two-thirds are comprised of the six hundred men he later leaves at the ruby ford and the three thousand five hundred men he brings with him to the Twins (A Storm of Swords, Catelyn VI), meaning that these forty-one hundred men make up two-thirds of Roose's initial force, indicating that Roose initially had some sixty-one hundred (~6150) men in total, and that some two thousand (~2050) men had been lost during the attack.
  2. 2.0 2.1 2.2 2.3 A Storm of Swords, Chapter 49, Catelyn VI.
  3. 3.0 3.1 A Feast for Crows, Chapter 27, Jaime III.
  4. A Storm of Swords, Chapter 51, Catelyn VII.
  5. A Storm of Swords, Chapter 60, Tyrion VIII.

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