War for the dawn

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War for the dawn
Location Worldwive


Belligerents
HumanityOthers
Notable commanders
King Stannis Baratheon (according to Melisandre)

The war for the dawn[1] is a prophesied conflict. It is said that the coming war will be a war for life itself.[2] The war for the dawn will be fought by humanity (and possibly the old races, such as the children of the forest) against the Others, and according to some characters, the Great Other. The prince that was promised is destined to play a part the war for the dawn.[2]

Thousands of years ago another war against the Others took place during the Long Night. According to stories, it ended in the defeat of the Others at the Battle for the Dawn or the last hero or through the actions of Azor Ahai.

Recent Events

A Storm of Swords

On Dragonstone, Melisandre speaks of a great battle is the coming war between the Great Other and R'hllor, the Lord of Light,[3] which has been waged since time began.[4] Melisandre states the Great Other is marshaling his power, a power fell and evil and strong beyond measure, and that the battle has begun.[5]

After King Stannis Baratheon makes Davos Seaworth the Lord of the Rainwood and his Hand of the King, he tells Davos that it is he whom he wants beside him for the battle. Davos thinks Stannis means another battle against the Lannisters, but Melisandre explains to Davos that it is the great battle Stannis is speaking of. Stannis then tells Davos that he saw the great battle in the flames. Davos is astonished, as it is not like Stannis to lie about such a thing. Stannis tells him that after the Battle of the Blackwater he was lost in despair but Melisandre bid him to gaze into the hearth fire; he describes to Davos what he saw in the flames,

The ashes were white, rising in the updraft, yet all at once it seemed as if they were falling. Snow, I thought. Then the sparks in the air seemed to circle, to become a ring of torches, and I was looking through the fire down on some high hill in a forest. The cinders had become men in black behind the torches, and there were shapes moving through the snow. For all the heat of the fire, I felt a cold so terrible I shivered, and when I did the sight was gone, the fire but a fire once again. but what I saw was real, I’d stake my kingdom on it.[5]

After the Battle of Castle Black Melisandre states that the war they have come to fight is a war for life itself. Melisandre tells Maester Aemon that the prince that was promised is standing before him, King Stannis Baratheon, who is Azor Ahai reborn and that in him the prophecies are fulfilled.[2]

Quotes

These little wars are no more than a scuffle of children before what is to come. The one whose name may not be spoken is marshalling his power ... a power fell and evil and strong beyond measure. Soon comes the cold, and the night that never ends ... Unless true men find the courage to fight it. Men whose hearts are fire.[5]

- Melisandre, to Davos Seaworth


It is death we choose, or life. Darkness, or light.[6]
Melisandre


The battle has begun ... The sand is running in the glass more quickly now, and man’s hour on earth is almost done. We must act boldly, or all hope is lost. Westeros must unite beneath her one true king, the prince that was promised, Lord of Dragonstone and chosen of R'hllor.[5]
- Melisandre, to Davos Seaworth


Ours is a war for life itself, and should we fail the world dies with us.[2]

- Melisandre


It is the war for the dawn you speak of, my lady. But where is the prince that was promised?[2]
- Aemon

References and Notes

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