First Battle of Tumbleton

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First Battle of Tumbleton
Conflict Dance of the Dragons
Date 130 AC
Place Tumbleton
Result victory for the greens
The greens The blacks
Lord Ormund Hightower
Ser Ulf White (switched)
Ser Hugh Hammer (switched)
Lord Roderick Dustin
significantly more than 9,000
Vermithor (post-betrayal)
Silverwing (post-betrayal)
almost 9,000
Lord Ormund Hightower
Ser Bryndon Hightower
Lord Roderick Dustin

The First Battle of Tumbleton was a battle fought between the greens and the blacks at Tumbleton in the Reach during the Dance of the Dragons. It was known for the Treasons of Tumbleton, in which the Two Betrayers burnt the town with dragonfire. It was followed by another battle, the Second Battle of Tumbleton.[1]


Lord Ormund Hightower led an army of greens from the Reach toward King's Landing, which at the time was held by Queen Rhaenyra Targaryen and the blacks. Ulf White and Hard Hugh Hammer were sent with their dragons, Vermithor and Silverwing, to Tumbleton, the last leal stronghold of Rhaenyra's between the capital and Ormund's advancing army. The Tumbleton of that era was a thriving market town. The blacks defending it numbered nearly 9,000, including troops from Bitterbridge, Longtable, and the Riverlands, as well as the Winter Wolves. However, they were greatly outnumbered by the host commanded by Lord Hightower. Prior to the start of the battle, members of the greens infiltrated the town disguised as refugees.


At the start of the battle, 6,000 blacks fought against the troops of Lord Hightower, but his archers thinned their ranks and his heavy horse sent the blacks retreating to Tumbleton. Lord Roderick Dustin then lead the Winter Wolves out a postern gate against the Hightowers. Although the northmen were outnumbered ten-to-one, the Winter Wolves managed to reach the commander of the greens. Roderick managed to slay Lord Ormund and his cousin, Ser Bryndon Hightower, before succumbing to his wounds.

The dragon Tessarion, mount of Daeron the Daring, was present at the battle, but her appearance across the field did not dismay the defenders, as they had Vermithor and Silverwing on their side - each much larger than Tessarion herself. Apparently, both sides held their dragons in reserve, waiting to react to how the other side committed its dragon(s).

The defenders of Tumbleton thought the battle was won when the Hightowers were killed, but Ulf and Hugh betrayed the blacks and turned their dragons upon the town. Buildings throughout Tumbleton burned to ash. Thousands burned to death or drowned trying to cross the Mander.[1] Lord Footly's men yielded, but were beheaded by the greens. Girls as young as eight were raped by the victors.


After hearing of the Battle of Tumbleton, Dowager Queen Alicent Hightower is said to have laughed, promising, "All they have sowed, now shall they reap." Many in King's Landing tried to flee, fearing that the same would happen to the capital, but Queen Rhaenyra Targaryen had the gold cloaks seal the city's gates. Ser Hobert Hightower took command of the greens at Tumbleton, which later saw a second battle.[1]


The Two Betrayers scourged the town with whips of flame from one end to the other. The sack that followed was as savage as any in the history of Westeros.[1]
- Archmaester Gyldayn.

References and Notes

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