Dornish Marches

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The Dornish Marches - by Rene Aigner ©
The stormlands and the location of the Dornish Marches
The stormlands and the location of the Dornish Marches
Dornish Marches
The stormlands and the location of the Dornish Marches

The Dornish Marches is an area of the southwestern stormlands bordering Dorne, the Reach,[1] and the Sea of Dorne.[2] The hundreds of leagues of the marches consist of grassland, moors, and plains, with a portion of the Red Mountains to the east.[3] A road runs south from the ruins of Summerhall in the northern marches[4] to Yronwood via the Boneway.[5]



For over a thousand years the marches were common battlegrounds between the stormlands, the Reach and Dorne until the last century, when Dorne joined the Seven Kingdoms. Having been conquered by the Storm Kings, it serves as an effective buffer zone between the old enemies.

The marcher lords have a very strong martial tradition and have formidable castles, as they defended against Dornish incursions for thousands of years.[6] Marcher houses include House Caron of Nightsong,[7] House Dondarrion of Blackhaven,[8] House Selmy of Harvest Hall,[9][10] and House Swann of Stonehelm.[11][12] The eastern region of the marches around Stonehelm is known as the Red Watch.[13][14]

The Kingdom of the Reach included western marches from Horn Hill to Nightsong.[15] Although the marches are now in the stormlands, Lord Mace Tyrell of the Reach includes Defender of the Marches amongst his titles.[16]

Dornishmen with histories of fighting the marcher lords include the Blackmonts of Blackmont, the Fowlers of Skyreach, the Manwoodys of Kingsgrave, the Wyls of Wyl, and the Yronwoods of Yronwood.[17]

King Daeron II Targaryen raised Summerhall in the Dornish Marches.[18]

Recent Events

A Game of Thrones

Anguy, a commoner from the marches, wins the archery competition at the Hand's tourney.[19]

A Clash of Kings

The acting Hand of the King, Tyrion Lannister, sends Princess Myrcella Baratheon to Dorne in hopes of repairing relations with Sunspear. As another concession, he grants several castles in the Marches to Dorne.[20] Once Myrcella arrives, Prince Doran Martell has pledged to mobilize Dornish hosts in the Prince's Pass and the Boneway to keep the marcher lords in their castles rather than aid Stannis Baratheon.[21] The Dornish refuse to invade after Stannis takes Storm's End, but Tyrion hopes the marcher lords will remain in their lands.[22]

A Storm of Swords

Tom of Sevenstreams tells Arya Stark that the only songs that Anguy knows are marcher ballads, every one of them a hundred verses long.[23] The new Lord of Nightsong, Philip Foote, also has the title Lord of the Marches.[24]

A Feast for Crows

Doran denies Obara Sand's request to allow her and Nymeria Sand to take the hosts from the Prince's Pass and the Boneway to attack the marcher lords and then Oldtown.[25]

A Dance with Dragons

Ser Barristan Selmy considers himself to be a man of the Dornish Marches.[10]

References and Notes

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