House Greyjoy

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House Greyjoy of Pyke
House Greyjoy.svg
We Do Not Sow
Coat of arms A golden kraken on black
(Sable, a kraken or)
Seat Pyke
Head King Euron III Greyjoy
Region Iron Islands
Overlord None, sovereign (disputed by House Baratheon of King's Landing and House Baratheon of Dragonstone)
Founder Son of the Grey King[1][2]
Founded Age of Heroes[1]

House Greyjoy of Pyke is one of the Great Houses of Westeros. It rules over the Iron Islands, a harsh and bleak collection of forbidding islands off the west coast of Westeros, from the Seastone Chair in the castle of Pyke on the island of the same name. The head of the family is traditionally known as the Lord Reaper of Pyke. Their sigil is a golden kraken on a black field, and their house motto is "We Do Not Sow."[3][4]


Members of the family tend to be attractive[5][6][7] and tall.[8][4][7] They often have black hair[6][9][7] and dark black eyes,[4][6] although Euron has a bright blue eye.[7] Aeron and Asha have prominent noses which are compared to beaks or shark fins.[4][6][7]


Ancient History

Pyke, castle and seat of House Greyjoy, by Zippo514 ©

The Greyjoys of Pyke claim descent from the Grey King of the Age of Heroes.[2]

In the era when the ironborn chose their rulers through the kingsmoot, only Houses Greyiron and Goodbrother produced more kings than the Greyjoys.[2] Member of the family who were crowned High King of the Iron Islands in a kingsmoot include Loron,[9] Theon III, and Balon V.[10]

The iron lords, including the Greyjoys, intermarried with the victorious Andals when they invaded the Iron Isles.[11] Greyjoys allied with Andals against King Greyiron, the last Greyiron king.[12]

Lords of the Iron Islands

At the time of Aegon's Conquest, King Harren the Black of House Hoare ruled all the lands between the mountains, from the Neck to the Blackwater Rush. When Harren and his sons perished in the burning of Harrenhal, Aegon I Targaryen granted the riverlands to Lord Edmyn Tully of Riverrun. The surviving lords of the Iron Islands fell into chaotic squabbling, leading Aegon to invade the islands to subdue them. After they bent the knee Aegon allowed them to revive their ancient custom and choose who should have the primacy among them. They chose Lord Vickon Greyjoy of Pyke.[2] Since Vickon's election in 2 AC, the Greyjoys have ruled the Iron Islands.

As Aegon I followed the Faith of the Seven and has been anointed by the High Septon at Oldtown, Vickon allowed the septons and septas of the Faith to return to the Iron Islands, angering the priests of the Drowned God and many of his pious lords. Vickon's son Goren, who succeeded his father in 33 AC, defeated a rebel claiming to be the priest-king Lodos the Twice-Drowned in 37 AC.[2] As a reward, King Aenys I Targaryen granted Goren any boon within his power to give. Goren requested permission to expel the septons and septas from the Iron Islands, which Aenys was forced to allow.[13][14]

During the Dance of the Dragons, Lord Dalton Greyjoy was offered the office of master of ships and a place on the small council by King Aegon II Targaryen in exchange for an alliance.[15] Preferring Rhaenyra Targaryen's offer over Aegon II's, Dalton sided with the blacks instead. Dalton raided along the western coast of Westeros during the remainder of the war. Following war's end, the regency of Aegon III commanded him to cease his raiding, but he ignored them.[16] Aegon III's regents eventually sent Lord Alyn Velaryon to the westerlands to deal Dalton.[17] Dalton was eventually murdered at Faircastle by a woman named Tess.[16] Dalton was succeeded by his eldest salt son, Lord Toron Greyjoy,[18] amid a struggle for power among the ironborn.[19]

Lord Alton Greyjoy sought new lands to conquer beyond the Lonely Light.[8] Lord Dagon Greyjoy raided the coastal areas of the Seven Kingdoms, sacking the town of Little Dosk, during the reign of Aerys I Targaryen. Lord Beron Stark gathered swords and House Lannister built ships in an effort to drive Lord Dagon and his ironmen back to the Iron Islands.[20] Dagon was ultimately unable to resist the Targaryens.[21] Dagon's grandson, Lord Quellon Greyjoy, tried to reform the ironborn and integrate them with the mainland, but he was killed late in Robert's Rebellion.

Greyjoy's Rebellion

Fleet from Pyke, by Tomasz Jedruszek © Fantasy Flight Games

Lord Balon Greyjoy, rejected his father Quellon's reforms and desired a return to the Old Way.[8] He created the Iron Fleet and led his own rebellion against the Iron Throne, declaring himself King of the Iron Islands.[8] His brothers Euron and Victarion led the burning of the Lannister fleet at anchor.[6]

Balon's eldest son, Rodrik, was slain during the storming of Seagard. Victarion was defeated by Lord Stannis Baratheon in a sea battle off Fair Isle, and Aeron was captured.[9][22] With the Iron Fleet out of the way, the forces of King Robert I Baratheon attacked the Iron Islands.[8] During the siege of Pyke, Balon's second son Maron was killed.[11]

Balon bent the knee to Robert and swore fealty to the Iron Throne once more. His last surviving son, the nine-year-old Theon, was given into the care of Lord Stark as a hostage to ensure Balon's good behavior.

Recent History

With Theon at Winterfell, Lord Balon Greyjoy raised his daughter Asha as his heir.[9] At some point during the past decade, Aeron Damphair underwent a spiritual reawakening after a near-death experience, and dedicated himself to the worship of the Drowned God.[4] In 297 AC, Balon exiled his brother Euron after Euron raped and impregnated the salt wife of Victarion Greyjoy, while Victarion killed his wife to retain his honor.[7][9]

Recent Events

A Game of Thrones

Balon Greyjoy, by Ryan Valle © Fantasy Flight Games

House Greyjoy is among the noble houses Viserys Targaryen believes will rise for him should he land in Westeros.[23]

Theon is still a ward of Winterfell nine years after Greyjoy's Rebellion.[5] When King Robert I Baratheon rides north to ask Lord Eddard Stark to assume the position of Hand of the King, Theon joins the organized hunt.[24] When Eddard goes south, Theon remains at Winterfell.[25] He becomes the advisor of Eddard's heir, Robb Stark, when he rules as acting lord of Winterfell.[26] He saves Bran Stark's life when a group of wildlings and Night's Watch deserters attack the boy in the wolfswood, but is reprimanded by Robb for endangering Bran's life in the process.[27]

When Eddard is arrested, Theon rides to war with Robb, becoming his trusted battle companion and one of Ser Brynden Tully's scouts.[28][29] He eventually becomes one of Robb's personal guards.[30] Theon fights in the battle in the Whispering Wood,[29][31] He advocates assaulting the Twins[28] and executing the captive Jaime.[30] Following the Battle of the Camps, Theon accompanies Robb to Riverrun, where his friend is proclaimed King in the North.[32]

A Clash of Kings

On the order of Robb Stark, now King in the North and King of the Trident, Theon travels from Riverrun to Pyke to present his father, Lord Balon Greyjoy, with a proposal from Robb that Balon names himself King of the Iron Islands and joins the war against House Lannister. Although he is escorted to the castle by his uncle, AeronDamphair, and given chambers in the Bloody Keep,[4] Theon's family considers him to be soft because he has lived on "the green lands" for a decade. In addition, he finds that Balon considers Asha to be his heir. Balon spurns Robb's offer and declares himself King of the Iron Islands.[4][33]

Balon sends his kin to take the lightly-held north.[6] Victarion, the Lord Captain of the Iron Fleet, leads the capture of Moat Cailin in the Neck to prevent Robb's lords from returning to their seats, while Asha takes Deepwood Motte. Theon harries the Stony Shore under the supervision of Aeron and Dagmer Cleftjaw. Dissatisfied with his duties and jealous of Asha's success, however, Theon disobeys Balon's orders and plans to take Winterfell in an attempt to prove himself.[29]

Theon successfully seizes Winterfell with a small party.[33] He takes Bran and Rickon Stark hostage and declares himself Prince of Winterfell.[34] When Bran and Rickon escape, Theon follows the advice of a servant calling himself "Reek" and kills two boys around the same age from the Acorn Water mill, mutilating the bodies so as to pretend they are the Stark boys when he fails to track them down in the wolfswood.[34] Theon forbids Maester Luwin from burying the bodies in the crypt of Winterfell,[35] instead mounting their heads on the castle walls.[36]

When Theon reaches out to her, Asha travels from Deepwood to Winterfell. She tells Theon that the ironborn will never succeed in holding landlocked castles and advises him to abandon the castle. When Asha departs, she leaves behind only a token group of men.[35] Not long after, Theon is confronted by a northern host under the command of Ser Rodrik Cassel. Soldiers from House Bolton arrive during the parlay and attack Rodrik's men in the winter town, scattering them in the battle at Winterfell. "Reek" reveals himself to be Ramsay Snow and orders his men to burn Winterfell, killing Theon's remaining garrison.[37]

A Storm of Swords

Outfitted for War, by Ignacio Lazcano © Fantasy Flight Games

Ramsay Snow has the two captured ward,s Big Walder and Little Walder Frey, write to their family that Theon burned Winterfell when northmen tried to retake the castle.[38] Ramsay is said to be flaying Theon alive as punishment,[39] and sends his father, Lord Roose Bolton, a piece of flayed skin which Roose delivers to King Robb Stark and his mother, Lady Catelyn.[40]

Balon Greyjoy now styles himself the Ninth of His Name Since the Grey King, King of the Iron Islands and the North, King of Salt and Rock, Son of the Sea Wind, and Lord Reaper of Pyke.[41] He sends terms of alliance to King's Landing, asking for the lands above the Neck.[42]

The small council of King Joffrey I Baratheon discusses Balon's terms, and both Lords Mace Tyrell and Paxter Redwyne urge that these terms be accepted in order to free up new resources for dealing with Stannis Baratheon. However, the Hand of the King, Lord Tywin Lannister, rejects them, stating that, since Balon is already at war with House Stark, accepting the terms will not give them an additional benefit.[42] Tywin considers both Balon, whose wife Alannys is elderly and failing, and Theon as potential new husbands for his daughter, the widowed Dowager Queen Cersei Lannister. However, he is uncertain about an alliance with the Iron Islands, while Cersei objects to Theon.[42]

Balon dies in a fall from Pyke while crossing a bridge during a storm.[31][43] Balon's younger brother, Euron, returns from his exile the next day, claiming the Seastone Chair.[31] Lord Sawane Botley objects to Euron's actions and insists that Theon is Balon's heir, but Euron has Sawane drowned.[31][9]

Roose Bolton convinces Robb to spare Theon's life until the succession to the Iron Islands is resolved, as Theon is Balon's only remaining son.[40]

A Feast for Crows

Asha Greyjoy, by Miguel Regodón Harkness ©

Asha Greyjoy travels to Winterfell after it was sacked in search of her brother Theon, but is unable to identify him amongst the bodies.[22][7]

Aeron Greyjoy, a priest of the Drowned God, has returned to the Iron Islands from the Stony Shore and resumed his regular priestly duties. When he learns that Balon, his oldest brother, has died and that Euron has returned and claimed the Seastone Chair, he calls for a kingsmoot on Old Wyk to choose their new king.[9] He rejects the call of his drowned men that he should claim the Seastone Chair himself.[9]

During the first kingsmoot in millenia, Victarion, Asha, and Euron all make their claim. Euron is eventually elected king after promising to conquer Westeros with dragons.[44]

Aeron vows to rouse people against Euron, whom he considers to be "godless", and disappears.[45] Asha departs Old Wyk for the Ten Towers, after which she quickly travels north.[46] Victarion continues to serve Euron, and leads the ironborn in raiding the Reach by taking the Shields.[45] At Lord Hewett's castle, Euron sends Victarion and the Iron Fleet east, to find Daenerys Targaryen. He asks Victarion to court her in his name and bring her and her dragons to Westeros, intent on using her to claims the Iron Throne, after which he is willing to grant Victarion the Seastone Chair. Victarion agrees, but secretly plans on courting Daenerys for himself.[45]

Following his taking of the Shields, Euron has his ironborn sack Ryamsport, and invade Vinetown, and Starfish Harbor, from where they threaten Oldtown, preying on ships bound for the city.[47][48]

A Dance with Dragons

Victarion Greyjoy, by Alexandre Dainche © Fantasy Flight Games

Victarion sets sail for Meereen, from where Daenerys Targaryen rules. At the Stepstones, he splits his fleet of ninety-three ships into three squadrons. Because of the storms, only forty-five ships reach the Isle of Cedars, their rendezvous point.[49] They find Moqorro, a red priest, clinging to wreckage out at sea. After Moqorro succesfully heals Victarion's wounded hand with magic, Victarion allows him to stay aboard.[49] Moqorro tells Victarion that in order to bind Daenerys's dragons to his will, Victarion will need to claim the dragon horn Dragonbinder with blood.[21]

Theon Greyjoy remains a captive at the Dreadfort, where he has been physically and mentally tortured, and forced to take on the guise of "Reek", the name of Ramsay's late serving man.[50] Theon is released from the Dreadfort to execute a mission for Ramsay. He is sent to the siege of Moat Cailin to treat with the ironborn left behind by Victarion. Although he succeeds in getting them to surrender by relaying Ramsay's promise of food and safe passage to the survivors., Ramsay has them all flayed alive.[51]

Ramsay's father, Lord Roose Bolton, temporarily takes Theon over from him,[52] and takes him to the partially-rebuilt Winterfell.[53] There, Theon gives Jeyne Poole, pretending to be Arya Stark, away at her wedding to Ramsay in the godswood of Winterfell, as Theon is the closest thing to kin "Arya" has left.[53]

Asha Greyjoy has returned to Deepwood Motte in the north. There, she receives scraps of Theon's skin send to her by Ramsay, who warns her to abandon the north.[46] While attempting to flee back to her ships, Asha and her garrison are overtaken by King Stannis Baratheon's army, with Quenton Greyjoy being killed in the fight by Deepwood Motte.[46] Asha is taken captive and continues with Stannis's host toward Winterfell, eventually being stranded at a crofters' village approximately three days ride from Winterfell.[54]

Theon remains at Winterfell, where he wanders the castle and at times prays before the heart tree in Winterfell's godswood.[55] During one visit he sees hints of Bran Stark's face in the weirwood and hears it whisper his name, which temporarily restores his sanity.[56] He is eventually approached by two of Mance Rayder's spearwives[56] who enlist his help in freeing "Arya Stark".[57] Theon and Jeyne manage the walls of Winterfell, but fall under attack by guards shooting at them with arrows. Grabbing Jeyne, Theon jumps with her from the battlements.[57] They are found by Mors Umber, who sends them to Stannis at the crofters' village.[58]

The Winds of Winter

This information has thus far been released in a sample chapter for The Winds of Winter, and might therefore not be in finalized form. Keep in mind that the content as described below is still subject to change.

Stannis Baratheon plans to execute Theon Greyjoy to placate the northern mountain clans, who want vengeance for the supposed murders of Bran and Rickon Stark, although he first hopes to learn useful information about Roose and Ramsay Bolton from him. Asha attempts to ransom her brother, and when Stannis refuses she urges him to execute Theon as Eddard Stark would have done - by personally beheading him in front of a heart tree.[59]

Since his disappearance following the kingsmoot, Aeron Greyjoy has been a prisoner on Euron Greyjoy's ship. While preparing to fight the Redwyne fleet, Euron has Aeron tied to the front of his ship.[60]

Known members at the end of the third century

Other branches

Cousins to the mainline are:

Lady Stonetree
Lady Piper
Lady Sunderly
Alannys Harlaw
three wives


Historical Members

Before the Conquest

After the Conquest

Sworn Houses


This dream of crowns has seemed to haunt House Greyjoy throughout its long history. Oft as not, it ends in defeat, despair, and death, as it did for Balon Greyjoy.[8]

—writings of Yandel

A lion may be fierce enough on land, but at sea the kraken rules supreme.[45]


  1. 1.0 1.1 1.2 1.3 The World of Ice & Fire, The Iron Islands: Driftwood Crowns.
  2. 2.0 2.1 2.2 2.3 2.4 2.5 2.6 The World of Ice & Fire, The Iron Islands: The Greyjoys of Pyke.
  3. A Game of Thrones, Chapter 7, Arya I.
  4. 4.0 4.1 4.2 4.3 4.4 4.5 4.6 A Clash of Kings, Chapter 11, Theon I.
  5. 5.0 5.1 A Game of Thrones, Chapter 1, Bran I.
  6. 6.0 6.1 6.2 6.3 6.4 6.5 A Clash of Kings, Chapter 24, Theon II.
  7. 7.0 7.1 7.2 7.3 7.4 7.5 7.6 7.7 7.8 A Feast for Crows, Chapter 18, The Iron Captain.
  8. 8.0 8.1 8.2 8.3 8.4 8.5 8.6 8.7 8.8 8.9 The World of Ice & Fire, The Iron Islands: The Old Way and the New.
  9. 9.00 9.01 9.02 9.03 9.04 9.05 9.06 9.07 9.08 9.09 9.10 9.11 9.12 9.13 9.14 9.15 9.16 9.17 A Feast for Crows, Chapter 1, The Prophet.
  10. The World of Ice & Fire, The Iron Islands: Driftwood Crows.
  11. 11.0 11.1 A Game of Thrones, Appendix.
  12. The World of Ice & Fire, The Iron Islands: The Iron Kings.
  13. The World of Ice & Fire, The Targaryen Kings: Aenys I.
  14. Fire & Blood, The Sons of the Dragon.
  15. Fire & Blood, The Dying of the Dragons - The Blacks and the Greens.
  16. 16.0 16.1 16.2 16.3 16.4 16.5 The World of Ice & Fire, The Iron Islands: The Red Kraken.
  17. The World of Ice & Fire, The Targaryen Kings: Aegon III.
  18. 18.0 18.1 18.2 18.3 18.4 18.5 Fire & Blood, Under the Regents - The Voyage of Alyn Oakenfist.
  19. 19.0 19.1 19.2 Fire & Blood, The Lysene Spring and the End of Regency.
  20. 20.0 20.1 The Mystery Knight.
  21. 21.0 21.1 A Dance with Dragons, Chapter 63, Victarion I.
  22. 22.0 22.1 A Feast for Crows, Chapter 11, The Kraken's Daughter.
  23. A Game of Thrones, Chapter 3, Daenerys I.
  24. A Game of Thrones, Chapter 8, Bran II.
  25. A Game of Thrones, Chapter 14, Catelyn III.
  26. A Game of Thrones, Chapter 24, Bran IV.
  27. A Game of Thrones, Chapter 37, Bran V.
  28. 28.0 28.1 A Game of Thrones, Chapter 59, Catelyn IX.
  29. 29.0 29.1 29.2 A Clash of Kings, Chapter 37, Theon III.
  30. 30.0 30.1 A Game of Thrones, Chapter 63, Catelyn X.
  31. 31.0 31.1 31.2 31.3 A Storm of Swords, Chapter 45, Catelyn V.
  32. A Game of Thrones, Chapter 71, Catelyn XI.
  33. 33.0 33.1 A Clash of Kings, Chapter 46, Bran VI.
  34. 34.0 34.1 A Clash of Kings, Chapter 50, Theon IV.
  35. 35.0 35.1 A Clash of Kings, Chapter 56, Theon V.
  36. A Clash of Kings, Chapter 55, Catelyn VII.
  37. A Clash of Kings, Chapter 66, Theon VI.
  38. A Storm of Swords, Chapter 35, Catelyn IV.
  39. A Storm of Swords, Chapter 48, Jon VI.
  40. 40.0 40.1 A Storm of Swords, Chapter 49, Catelyn VI.
  41. A Storm of Swords, Appendix.
  42. 42.0 42.1 42.2 A Storm of Swords, Chapter 19, Tyrion III.
  43. A Storm of Swords, Chapter 54, Davos V.
  44. A Feast for Crows, Chapter 19, The Drowned Man.
  45. 45.0 45.1 45.2 45.3 A Feast for Crows, Chapter 29, The Reaver.
  46. 46.0 46.1 46.2 A Dance with Dragons, Chapter 26, The Wayward Bride.
  47. A Feast for Crows, Chapter 36, Cersei VIII.
  48. A Feast for Crows, Chapter 45, Samwell V.
  49. 49.0 49.1 A Dance with Dragons, Chapter 56, The Iron Suitor.
  50. A Dance with Dragons, Chapter 12, Reek I.
  51. A Dance with Dragons, Chapter 20, Reek II.
  52. A Dance with Dragons, Chapter 32, Reek III.
  53. 53.0 53.1 A Dance with Dragons, Chapter 37, The Prince of Winterfell.
  54. A Dance with Dragons, Chapter 42, The King's Prize.
  55. A Dance with Dragons, Chapter 41, The Turncloak.
  56. 56.0 56.1 A Dance with Dragons, Chapter 46, A Ghost in Winterfell.
  57. 57.0 57.1 A Dance with Dragons, Chapter 51, Theon I.
  58. A Dance with Dragons, Chapter 62, The Sacrifice.
  59. The Winds of Winter, Chapter , Theon I.
  60. The Winds of Winter, Chapter , The Forsaken.
  61. The World of Ice & Fire, The North: The Kings of Winter.
  62. Fire & Blood, The Dying of the Dragons - Rhaenyra Triumphant.
  63. Fire & Blood, Under the Regents - The Hooded Hand.
  64. The Sworn Sword.