Smallfolk are the common people of Westeros, akin to peasants. They are at the bottom of the social ladder. Most have to obey their local lord, even though they may never catch a glimpse of him during their life. The nobility of Westeros have great power over the smallfolk.
Most smallfolk are poor, illiterate, and live very provincial, humble, simple lives. They do not have surnames. They dress in raw wool and dull brown roughspun. They use roads which are crooked muddy tracks that do not appear on parchment maps. They use staffs as weapons. They often name their daughters after flowers and herbs. They are far removed from the major players of the game of thrones, but are affected by those decisions, good or bad.
Some among the smallfolk may believe the world to be flat.
Even though they are born in the lowest social status in Westeros, it is possible for smallfolk to rise up in social status. Below are some examples:
- Knighthood. Hedge knights are usually born as smallfolk, and may rise to higher positions. For example, Ser Duncan the Tall, who became Lord Commander of the Kingsguard of King Aegon V Targaryen. Great service may also be rewarded with knighthood as exemplified by the smuggler Davos, who slipped through the naval blockade during the Siege of Storm's End, thus saving the castle garrison from starvation, and was rewarded with land, keep and a knighthood, becoming a landed knight.
- Guards. It is possible for smallfolk to join the City Watch in King's Landing, Lannisport or the Night's Watch with the possibility of becoming a commander.
- Smallfolk are also allowed to join the Citadel of Oldtown, to study to become a maester.
- The Faith of the Seven allows all to become Septons or Septas.
- The Poor Fellows, a military order of the Faith Militant, accepts members regardless of their status or their sex.
Some characters popular with the smallfolk
- King Jaehaerys I Targaryen
- Good Queen Alysanne
- King Viserys I Targaryen
- King Daeron II Targaryen
- Queen Alicent Hightower
- Serwyn of the Mirror shield 
- Prince Aemon the Dragonknight 
- King Baelor I Targaryen
- King Aegon V Targaryen
- Prince Rhaegar Targaryen
- Renly Baratheon 
- Robert Baratheon
- Margaery Tyrell
- Loras Tyrell
- Barristan the Bold
- Beric Dondarrion
- Simon Toyne
- Arthur Dayne
Some characters unpopular with the smallfolk
|“||They are born, they live, they love, they die.||”|
|“||Thousands of smallfolk streamed out the city gates, carrying their children and worldly possessions on their backs, to seek safety in the countryside. Others dug pits and tunnels under their hovels, dark dank holes where they hoped to hide whilst the city burned.||”|
|“||The common people pray for rain, healthy children, and a summer that never ends. It is no matter to them if the high lords play their game of thrones, so long as they are left in peace. They never are.||”|
|“||Most of them believe that if a woman eats rabbit while pregnant, her child will be born with long floppy ears.||”|
|“||That was the way of war. The smallfolk were slaughtered, while the highborn were held for ransom.||”|
|“||Fools love a fool.||”|
|“||If we mingle with the commons, they will love us better.||”|
|“||It is being common-born that is dangerous, when the great lords play their game of thrones.||”|
References and Notes
- ↑ A Feast for Crows, Chapter 26, Samwell III.
- ↑ 2.0 2.1 A Feast for Crows, Chapter 25, Brienne V.
- ↑ 3.0 3.1 A Feast for Crows, Chapter 28, Cersei VI.
- ↑ A Storm of Swords, Chapter 2, Catelyn I.
- ↑ So Spake Martin: Trade with Asshai (August 26, 2000)
- ↑ 6.0 6.1 6.2 A Clash of Kings, Chapter 3, Tyrion I.
- ↑ 7.0 7.1 A Clash of Kings, Chapter 42, Davos II.
- ↑ A Clash of Kings, Chapter 41, Tyrion IX.
- ↑ The Princess and the Queen.
- ↑ A Game of Thrones, Chapter 23, Daenerys III.
- ↑ A Clash of Kings, Chapter 15, Tyrion III.
- ↑ A Clash of Kings, Chapter 20, Tyrion V.
- ↑ A Feast for Crows, Chapter 37, Brienne VII.