House Dayne

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House Dayne of Starfall
Coat of arms Purpure, a blazing star bendways surmounted by a sword bendways sinister argent
Seat Starfall
Current Lord Edric Dayne
Region Dorne
Title Lord of Starfall
King of the Torrentine (historical)
Overlord House Martell
Cadet Branch House Dayne of High Hermitage
Ancestral Weapon Dawn

House Dayne of Starfall is a noble house from Starfall in Dorne. They are among the principal houses sworn to House Martell.[1] The Sword of the Morning is a title given to a Dayne knight who is considered worthy of wielding the greatsword Dawn, a blade said to be created from the heart of falling star. Their sigil is a sword and a falling star on a lavender background.[2]

A cadet branch of House Dayne are the Daynes of High Hermitage. In appearance, members of the family are stony Dornishmen whose characteristics mostly resemble the rest of the Seven Kingdoms in look, customs and traditions. Unlike the rest of the more Rhoynish-looking Dornishmen, they have pale skin with hair ranging from dark brown to pale blond and they often have violet eyes.


House Dayne of Starfall are one of the most ancient houses in the Seven Kingdoms, claiming ancestry dating back ten thousand years to the dawn of days.[3] Though their fame largely rests on their ancestral sword, called Dawn, and the men who wield it.[4] The first Dayne is said to have raised Starfall on an island at the mouth of the Torrentine, having tracked a falling star there and found a stone of magical powers. His descendants, thereafter, became the First Men Kings of the Torrentine and Lords of Starfall.[5]

The Daynes have taken part in many battles between Dorne and the Reach. In particular, they have been killing Oakhearts for thousands of years and King Samwell Dayne, called the Starfire, once burned Oldtown.[3][6] The last Dayne King, Vorian Dayne, known as the Sword of the Evening, was defeated in Nymeria's War and sent to the Wall. Afterwards the Daynes supported Nymeria against King Yorick V Yronwood. Nymeria's third husband was Ser Davos Dayne, the Sword of the Morning. Nymeria was later succeeded by her eldest daughter by her first husband, Mors Martell, not her son by Davos.[7]

When the Dornish fought against House Targaryen, Ser Joffrey Dayne led an Dornish army and marched to the very walls of Oldtown, razing the fields and villages outside it.[8] Another Sword of the Morning of note was Ulrick Dayne. He was considered an exceptional knight by Ser Eustace Osgrey, comparable as a swordsman to Daemon I Blackfyre and Prince Aemon the Dragonknight.[9]

Horsemen of Starfall by by artist Tomasz Jedruszek. © Fantasy Flight Games.

In more recent times, on the journey to Casterly Rock for the brokerage of their marriages, Prince Oberyn Martell and Princess Elia Martell visited Starfall. Ser Arthur Dayne, the Sword of the Morning and the deadliest knight of Aerys II Targaryen's Kingsguard, led the Kingsguard during their campaign against the Kingswood Brotherhood. He won over the smallfolk of the forest, and rooted out the bandits. During the climactic skirmish, Arthur killed the psychotic Smiling Knight in a duel. Afterwards, he knighted Jaime Lannister. Arthur broke twelve lances against his good friend Prince Rhaegar Targaryen in a tourney at Storm's End.

Arthur's sister, Lady Ashara Dayne, was one of Elia Martell's handmaidens, and came to the great tourney at Harrenhal with her. There she danced with a member of the Kingsguard, Lord Jon Connington and Eddard Stark. In the jousting, Arthur lost to Prince Rhaegar, the eventual champion. Ser Barristan Selmy was also infatuated with Ashara, and planned to name her queen of love and beauty if he won the tourney.

House Dayne's loyalty to House Targaryen during the War of the Usurper led to the deaths of some of its most famed members. Arthur died at the Tower of Joy, killed by Lord Eddard Stark and Lord Howland Reed. Afterward, Eddard returned Dawn to Starfall.[7] Ashara had been a lady-in-waiting to Princess Elia for a few years when she went back to Starfall for unknown reasons. Given Dawn and the news of her brother’s death by Eddard, she threw herself into the Summer Sea from the Palestone Sword. Her body was never recovered. According to her sister, Lady Allyria, Ashara loved Eddard. Many believe her or the wet-nurse Wylla to be the mother of Eddard's bastard, Jon Snow.

The current Lord of Starfall, Edric Dayne, is the nephew of Ser Arthur Dayne. Edric was sent to squire for Lord Beric Dondarrion after the Lord of Blackhaven espoused his aunt, Lady Allyria.[10]

Recent Events

Fallen and Reborn by Jen Zee ©

A Clash of Kings

Bran Stark recalls that Ser Arthur Dayne was the finest knight ever seen by his father, Lord Eddard Stark.[11]

A Storm of Swords

Daenerys Targaryen discusses Arthur with Arstan Whitebeard; Viserys Targaryen told her that Arthur was the only knight in the realm who was the peer of their brother Rhaegar, Prince of Dragonstone.[12]

Traveling through the Riverlands, Arya Stark meets the brotherhood without banners. She learns that Lord Edric Dayne accompanied Lord Beric Dondarrion in his mission to bring Ser Gregor Clegane to justice. When their band was ambushed at the Mummer's Ford, Beric was killed. Edric defended his body, however, allowing it to be recovered and later accidentally revived by Thoros of Myr. Edric has accompanied his fellow survivors, constituting the brotherhood without banners, an outlaw fellowship dedicated to guarding the smallfolk of the Riverlands from the cruelties of war.[10]

While reading the White Book in the Red Keep, Ser Jaime Lannister recalls Arthur with great respect.[13]

A Feast for Crows

Princess Arianne Martell enlists Ser Gerold from the Daynes' cadet branch for her plot to crown Myrcella Baratheon. Gerold resents that he is not regard as highly as Arthur was. When Arianne's plan collapses at the Greenblood, Gerold wounds Myrcella and flees.[3]

When Lady Stoneheart takes command of the brotherhood without banners after Beric dies his final death, Edric and a group of others leave the brotherhood. Their whereabouts are unknown.[14][15]

A Dance with Dragons

Prince Doran Martell tasks Obara Sand with leading Ser Balon Swann to High Hermitage to hunt Gerold Dayne, who is also accused of killing Ser Arys Oakheart.[16]

Ser Barristan Selmy counts his loss to Prince Rhaegar in the tourney at Harrenhal, and the war that resulted from the prince's actions thereafter, to be his greatest failure. Barristan wanted to name Ashara queen of love and beauty if he won the tourney, but instead Rhaegar chose Lyanna Stark.[17]

House Dayne at the end of the third century

House Dayne Reserves - illustrated by Ryan Barger. © Fantasy Flight Games.

The known Daynes during the timespan of the events described in A Song of Ice and Fire are:

Unknown Dayne
Gerold "Darkstar"

Historical Members

See also

References and Notes

  1. A Game of Thrones, Appendix.
  2. The Citadel. Heraldry: Houses from Dorne
  3. 3.0 3.1 3.2 A Feast for Crows, Chapter 21, The Queenmaker.
  4. The World of Ice and Fire, Sword of the Morning.
  5. The World of Ice and Fire, Kingdoms of the First Men.
  6. 6.0 6.1 The World of Ice and Fire, Oldtown.
  7. 7.0 7.1 The World of Ice and Fire.
  8. The World of Ice and Fire, Dorne against the Dragons.
  9. 9.0 9.1 The Sworn Sword.
  10. 10.0 10.1 10.2 10.3 A Storm of Swords, Chapter 43, Arya VIII.
  11. 11.0 11.1 A Clash of Kings, Chapter 21, Bran III.
  12. A Storm of Swords, Chapter 8, Daenerys I.
  13. 13.0 13.1 A Storm of Swords, Chapter 67, Jaime VIII.
  14. A Feast for Crows, Chapter 42, Brienne VIII.
  15. A Feast for Crows, Appendix.
  16. A Dance with Dragons, Chapter 38, The Watcher.
  17. A Dance with Dragons, Chapter 67, The Kingbreaker.
  18. The World of Ice and Fire, The Coming of the Rhoynar.
  19. The World of Ice and Fire, Ten Thousand Ships.
  20. The World of Ice and Fire, Aegon I.
  21. The World of Ice and Fire, Appendix: Targaryen Lineage.

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