Dragonstone (island)

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The crownlands and the location of Dragonstone
The crownlands and the location of Dragonstone
Dragonstone
The crownlands and the location of Dragonstone

Dragonstone is an island in Blackwater Bay in the crownlands. The island is located south of Crackclaw Point and Claw Isle, northeast of Driftmark, and north of the Gullet.[1] It contains the castle of Dragonstone, the seat of House Baratheon of Dragonstone.

Geography

Dragonstone with the castle beneath the Dragonmont, as depicted by Philip Straub in The World of Ice and Fire.

Dragonstone is a volcanic island at the mouth of Blackwater Bay, created by the active volcano, Dragonmont. Damp and dreary,[2] it smells of sulfur and brimstone.[3]

The castle of Dragonstone is a small fortress located on the face of the volcano. The nearby port contains inns, including a weathered little inn at the end of a stone pier.[4] Farmers and fishermen live in villages below the Dragonmont.[5]

Beneath Dragonmont are rich deposits of dragonglass. There is much obsidian seen in the old tunnels beneath the mountain, found in chunks and boulders. The greater part of it is black, but there is some green obsidian as well, some red, even purple.[6]

Through the dalliances of many Targaryen lords and princes over the years, many of the smallfolk of the island are descendants of that dynasty, and are known as dragonseeds.[5] Stannis Baratheon, Lord of Dragonstone, has outlawed prostitution on the island.[4]

History

House Targaryen

The Targaryens sail to Dragonstone. Screencap from the Game of Thrones Blu-ray.

The isle of Dragonstone was settled two centuries before the Doom by Valyrians who defeated local lords of the narrow sea. They used magic to shape the castle of Dragonstone. When the maiden Daenys Targaryen had visions of the Doom, her father Aenar relocated his family, their five dragons, and all their wealth from the Valyrian peninsula to Dragonstone.[7][8]

House Targaryen became powerful by controlling the Gullet and growing dragons in Dragonstone's hatcheries; the dragons Vhagar and Meraxes were born on their island, for instance. Although the Targaryens were sovereign, their island "kingdom" was not considered one of the Seven Kingdoms of Westeros.[9]

Aegon the Conqueror, Lord of Dragonstone, invaded mainland Westeros and conquered six of the Seven Kingdoms with dragons in Aegon's Conquest.[8] Quenton Qoherys, master-at-arms of Dragonstone, became Lord of Harrenhal after the burning of Black Harren.[10] After their deaths, the bodies of Aegon and his successor, Aenys I Targaryen, were burned on Dragonstone in traditional Valyrian manner.[11]

Royal fleets from King's Landing and Dragonstone have periodically been sent to deal with pirates in the narrow sea.[12]

Dance of the Dragons

During the Dance of the Dragons, the island served as the early seat of power for Queen Rhaenyra Targaryen and her black council. She seized the Iron Throne after the fall of King's Landing. Lord Larys Strong smuggled King Aegon II Targaryen from the capital, however, and hid Aegon at a remote fishing village on Dragonstone, correctly believing that the queen would not think to look for her rival on her own island. Aegon's dragon, Sunfyre, eventually found its way to its dragonrider as well. With the assistance of Ser Alfred Broome and smallfolk, Aegon was able to take control the island and its castle. Rhaenyra returned to her island after the Storming of the Dragonpit. Unaware of the fall of Dragonstone, however, she was captured by Aegon's supporters and then fed to Sunfyre. The golden dragon eventually died there of its own wounds.[5]

War of the Usurper

During the War of the Usurper, Prince Rhaegar Targaryen was killed by Robert Baratheon, Lord of Storm's End, in the Battle of the Trident. In response, King Aerys II Targaryen sent Queen Rhaella Targaryen with his new heir, Prince Viserys Targaryen, from King's Landing to Dragonstone. Nine months later, while a fierce storm destroyed the Targaryen fleet at Dragonstone, Rhaella died giving birth to Daenerys Targaryen.[13]

Robert I, the new king after Aerys's death during the Sack of King's Landing, ordered his younger brother, Stannis Baratheon, to construct a new fleet and conquer Dragonstone from the remaining Targaryen loyalists. Ser Willem Darry fled with Viserys and Daenerys for the safety of the Braavosian coast before Stannis's ships arrived. Stannis commanded the successful assault on Dragonstone.[13][14][15] Robert then granted the island and its castle to Stannis.[16]

Recent Events

A Game of Thrones

Stannis Baratheon, Lord of Dragonstone, returns to his island from King's Landing shortly after King Robert I Baratheon travels north to offer the Hand of the King to Lord Eddard Stark.[17]

While sailing from White Harbor to King's Landing, the Storm Dancer survives a storm while passing the island of Dragonstone.[18]

A Clash of Kings

Stannis Baratheon and Melisandre at Dragonstone's harbor. © Tomasz Jedruszek

During the War of the Five Kings, the poor lands of Dragonstone give King Stannis few supporters for his claim to the Iron Throne. For the past half-year no craft that has come within sight of Dragonstone has been allowed to leave again. The island's docks are full of ships for Stannis's royal fleet.[4]

A Storm of Swords

Dragonstone's harbor and the dockside streets are largely empty since so many of Stannis's ships were destroyed in the Battle of the Blackwater.[19]

Stannis and his forces leave Dragonstone to defend Castle Black and the Wall.[20]

Once at the Wall Stannis sends word to Ser Rolland Storm to begin mining obsidian on the island. Stannis fears he will not hold his seat much longer but hopes that the Lord of Light shall grant them enough frozen fire to arm themselves against the Others before Dragonstone falls.[6]

A Feast for Crows

With Stannis gone, only a few fishing ships remain to defend Dragonstone.[21] The Redwyne fleet transports two thousand Lannister soldiers[22] from King's Landing across [[Blackwater Bay], and Lord Paxter Redwyne encamps beneath the castle's walls.[23]

Ser Loras Tyrell, realizing that the Redwyne ships are needed elsewhere after the taking of the Shields by the ironborn, volunteers to take command of the siege of Dragonstone, as he feels that Paxter's strategy of starving the castle will take too long.[23] Lord Aurane Waters, the small council's master of ships, later reports to Queen Regent Cersei Lannister that Loras succeeding in taking Dragonstone, but was heavily wounded in doing so and there was high loss of life.[24] Lord Hallyne asks permission from Cersei to allow the Alchemists' Guild access to any dragon eggs found on the island.[24]

A Dance with Dragons

Lord Mace Tyrell tells Ser Harys Swyft that Loras's men found no wealth or dragon eggs on Dragonstone.[2]

Quotes

The dragons are done. The Targaryens tried to bring them back half a dozen times. And made fools of themselves, or corpses. Patchface is the only fool we need on this godsforsaken rock.[25]
- Stannis Baratheon to Melisandre


The Freehold's grasp had reached as far as Dragonstone, but never to the mainland of Westeros itself. Odd, that. Dragonstone is no more than a rock. The wealth was farther west, but they had dragons. Surely they knew that it was there.[26]
- thoughts of Tyrion Lannister


When the red star bleeds and the darkness gathers, Azor Ahai shall be born again amidst smoke and salt to wake dragons out of stone. Dragonstone is the place of smoke and salt.[27]
- Melisandre to Jon Snow

References and Notes

  1. The Lands of Ice and Fire, Westeros.
  2. 2.0 2.1 A Dance with Dragons, Epilogue.
  3. The World of Ice and Fire, The Targaryen Kings: Aegon I.
  4. 4.0 4.1 4.2 A Clash of Kings, Chapter 10, Davos I.
  5. 5.0 5.1 5.2 The Princess and the Queen.
  6. 6.0 6.1 A Storm of Swords, Chapter 78, Samwell V.
  7. The World of Ice and Fire, Ancient History: The Doom of Valyria.
  8. 8.0 8.1 The World of Ice and Fire, The Reign of the Dragons: The Conquest.
  9. The World of Ice and Fire, The North.
  10. The World of Ice and Fire, The Riverlands: House Tully.
  11. The World of Ice and Fire, The Targaryen Kings: Aenys I.
  12. The World of Ice and Fire, The Free Cities: The Quarrelsome Daughters: Myr, Lys, and Tyrosh.
  13. 13.0 13.1 A Game of Thrones, Chapter 3, Daenerys I.
  14. A Game of Thrones, Chapter 27, Eddard VI.
  15. A Clash of Kings, Chapter 58, Davos III.
  16. A Clash of Kings, Prologue.
  17. A Game of Thrones, Chapter 20, Eddard IV.
  18. A Game of Thrones, Chapter 18, Catelyn IV.
  19. A Storm of Swords, Chapter 10, Davos II.
  20. A Storm of Swords, Chapter 73, Jon X.
  21. A Feast for Crows, Chapter 17, Cersei IV.
  22. A Feast for Crows, Chapter 16, Jaime II.
  23. 23.0 23.1 A Feast for Crows, Chapter 32, Cersei VII.
  24. 24.0 24.1 A Feast for Crows, Chapter 36, Cersei VIII.
  25. A Storm of Swords, Chapter 36, Davos IV.
  26. A Dance with Dragons, Chapter 5, Tyrion II.
  27. A Dance with Dragons, Chapter 49, Jon X.

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