Casterly Rock

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Casterly Rock
Fortress, regional capital
Casterly rock by feliche.jpg
Casterly Rock by Feliche©.
Location Westerlands, Westeros
Government House Lannister , Feudal lord.
Religion Faith of the Seven
Founded Before the Age of Heroes
Named for House Casterly
The westerlands and the location of Casterly Rock
The westerlands and the location of Casterly Rock
Casterly Rock
The westerlands and the location of Casterly Rock

Casterly Rock, nicknamed the Rock, is a fortress and the seat of House Lannister. The capital of the westerlands, it overlooks the harbor of Lannisport and the Sunset Sea. Nearby strongholds include Kayce and Feastfires to the west, Sarsfield to the north, and Cornfield and Clegane's Keep to the south.

The household of Casterly Rock includes Maester Creylen, Vylarr, Ser Benedict Broom, and Whitesmile Wat.[1]


See also: Images of Casterly Rock

Casterly Rock is carved out of a great stone hill colossal rock beside the Sunset Sea. It is popularly believed to resemble a lion in repose at sunset.[2]

The Casterlys of antiquity built a ringfort on the peak, and as millenia have passed its natural defenses have been expanded with walls, gates, and watchtowers.[2] The base of the Rock contains large sea-carved caverns. The stone has been mined for thousands of years, so there are hundreds of mineshafts in the depths of the Rock, as well as yet untouched gold veins.[3] The Rock itself has been measured at three times the height of the Wall or the Hightower of Oldtown.[2]

The Rock is almost two leagues long from west to east, and contains tunnels, dungeons, storerooms, barracks, halls, stables, stairways, courtyards, balconies, and gardens. Its port has docks, wharves, and shipyards and is accessible by longships and cogs.[4] From below the Rock thunder can be heard, where the sea comes in.[5] In the bowels of the Rock are rooms where caged lions were once kept,[6] and cells for the worst prisoners.[7]

  • The Golden Gallery contains treasures of the Lannisters, including gilded ornaments and walls.[2]
  • The Hall of Heroes is where the Lannisters and their close kin who have died valiantly are interred.[8] The armor of Lannisters of old are also displayed in the hall.[2]
  • The Lion's Mouth, the main entry to Casterly Rock, is an enormous natural cavern reaching two hundred feet high. Its steps are now wide enough for twenty riders.[2]
  • The Stone Garden is a godswood with a twisted weirwood a tenth the size of Raventree Hall's.[9][10][2]


The Hall of Heroes. - Illustrated by Thomas Denmark. © Fantasy Flight Games.

The region was probably inhabited by children of the forest and giants before the arrival of the First Men, and numerous animals have made it their home as well.[2]

Legend says that Casterly Rock is named for the family that ruled it in the Age of Heroes, the Casterlys, who no longer exist. The Lannisters trace their rule over it back to Lann the Clever, who tricked the Casterlys out of their castle and claimed it for his own.[11] Some claim that Lann still haunts the fortress,[12] which has never fallen.[2]

The Kings of the Rock from House Lannister took their title from their seat, and members of the family founded nearby Lannisport. During the Andal invasion, the Lannisters eventually invited Andals into their realm and brought Andal youths to serve at Casterly Rock.[13] According to a lost scroll, Valyrian sorcerers believed their downfall would come from the Rock's gold.[13]

The young Princess Rhaenyra Targaryen was once courted during a feast at Casterly Rock by the twins Jason Lannister and Tyland Lannister.[14] During the Dance of the Dragons, Casterly Rock was left in disarray after the death of Lord Jason in the Battle of the Red Fork and the Lannister defeat in the Battle by the Lakeshore.[15] Although Dalton Greyjoy was able to sack Lannisport, Casterly Rock was too strong for the ironborn once Lady Johanna Lannister barred its gates.[16]

Aeron Greyjoy was captured after the sea battle off Fair Isle, taken to Lannisport in chains, and spent the rest of Greyjoy's Rebellion imprisoned in Casterly Rock.[17]

When Tyrion Lannister became a man at sixteen, he was forbidden from taking a tour of the Free Cities as his uncles Gerion and Tygett had done. Instead Lord Tywin Lannister gave Tyrion charge of all the cisterns and drains at Casterly Rock.[12]

Recent Events

The wealth of Casterly Rock - Illustrated by Daniele Bigliardo. © Fantasy Flight Games.

A Game of Thrones

After hearing of the capture of his son Tyrion Lannister by Lady Catelyn Tully, Lord Tywin Lannister raises two hosts at Casterly Rock, beginning a conflict which develops into the War of the Five Kings.

A Clash of Kings

Expecting the ironborn to ally with the northmen, Theon Greyjoy desires to conquer Casterly Rock and claim it for himself. His father, Lord Balon Greyjoy, states the Rock is too strong, however, and instead attacks the north.[18]

A Storm of Swords

Tyrion Lannister demands his birthright of the lordship of Casterly Rock from his father, Tywin, and is harshly rejected.

Tyrion asks his new wife Sansa Stark if she wants to visit the Rock, wanting to show her where he and Jaime Lannister grew up, but also desiring to keep her away from the abuses of his nephew Joffrey Baratheon. She remains impassive and Tyrion withdraws this offer.

Tywin Lannister, Lord of Casterly Rock, is killed in King's Landing by his son Tyrion.[19]

A Feast for Crows

Ser Damion Lannister, a distant cousin of the main branch, is named castellan by Queen Cersei Lannister,[20] the new Lady of Casterly Rock.[21]


The Lannisters were an old family, tracing their descent back to Lann the Clever, a trickster from the Age of Heroes who was no doubt as legendary as Bran the Builder, though far more beloved of singers and taletellers. In the songs, Lann was the fellow who winkled the Casterlys out of Casterly Rock with no weapon but his wits, and stole gold from the sun to brighten his curly hair.[11]

- thoughts of Eddard Stark

They say there is naught but stone at the heart of Casterly Rock.[22]
Catelyn Stark to Robb Stark

Tyrion: What do I want, you ask? I'll tell you what I want. I want what is mine by rights. I want Casterly Rock ... I want you to stand up before the realm and proclaim that I am your son and your lawful heir.

Tywin: Casterly Rock. Never .. neither gods nor men shall ever compel me to let you turn Casterly Rock into your whorehouse.[23]

- Tyrion Lannister and Tywin Lannister

References and Notes

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