House Royce of the Gates of the Moon

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House Royce of the Gates of the Moon
House Royce of the Gates of the Moon.svg
Coat of arms A black portcullis over a white crescent moon on purple bordered with runes on bronze
(Purpure, a moon increscent argent surmounted by a portcullis sable, all within a bordure bronze charged with ancient runes of the third)
Seat Gates of the Moon
Head Lord Nestor Royce
Region Vale of Arryn
Title Keeper of the Gates of the Moon
Heir Ser Albar Royce[1]
Overlord House Arryn

House Royce of the Gates of the Moon is a noble house from the Gates of the Moon in the Vale of Arryn. They are a cadet branch of House Royce of Runestone. According to semi-canon sources, they blazon their arms with a black portcullis over a white crescent moon on purple bordered with runes on bronze.[2] Their motto has not appeared yet.


House Royce of the Gates of the Moon is a cadet branch to the Royces of Runestone. They have intermarried with noble Vale houses, and potentially one of the Great Houses as well if the branch that married into House Stark is the same cadet branch. Benedict Royce, a younger son of Lord Raymar Royce of the junior branch, married Jocelyn Stark.[3][4][N 1] According to Catelyn Stark, the marriage between Benedict and Jocelyn produced three daughters who married into other Vale houses. One married a Waynwood, another a Corbray, and the third might have married a Templeton.[3]

Lord Nestor is called "a formidable lord in his own right" by Catelyn Stark[5] before he is granted lordship over the Gates of the Moon, so the branch may have held a lordship before that.

Recent Events

A Game of Thrones

Nestor Royce has been High Steward of the Vale for fourteen years in Jon Arryn's absence as Hand of the King in King's Landing, and many whisper that he should rule as regent until Robert Arryn comes of age. Nestor has offered himself as a suitor to the widowed Lysa Arryn, but she has rejected him. Nestor welcomes Lady Catelyn Stark, Ser Brynden Tully, Tyrion Lannister, and Bronn to the Gates of the Moon.[5]

Nestor and his son Albar Royce witness the trial of Tyrion Lannister in the Eyrie.[6]

In Joffrey Baratheon's first session of court, both Lord Royces and their sons are among the nobles commanded to do him fealty or be labeled as traitors.[7]

A Storm of Swords

Robb Stark considers who he can choose as his heir apparent, due to the apparent deaths of his brothers Bran and Rickon and the marriage of his sister Sansa to Tyrion Lannister. His mother Catelyn refers to the Jocelyn Stark-Benedict Royce marriage, saying one of their descendants could be Robb's heir.[3]

Lady Lysa Arryn counts Nestor Royce among those who want to wed her, but finds him dreadful.[8]

A Feast for Crows

Lord Nestor, his son Ser Albar Royce, and Ser Marwyn Belmore come to the Eyrie to hear Marillion confess to the murder of Lysa. The Keeper of the Gates of the Moon has not been a hereditary position; however, Petyr Baelish, the Lord Protector of the Vale, grants the castle to the Royces in perpetuity, stating it was the wish of Lady Lysa before her death. In his words to Nestor, Lord Baelish grants them the lordship "for their loyal service", but privately to Alayne Stone he admits to "buying their support."[9]

Nestor closes his gates against his cousin Bronze Yohn and the rest of the Lords Declarant. His garrison is less than 300 men, and each of the six lords outside has 1,000. He accompanies them when they climb to the Eyrie to treat with Lord Baelish.[10]

Nestor's daughter Myranda Royce was once married, but her husband died while they were having sex on her wedding night. Nestor offers Myranda as a match for Harrold Hardyng, but his offer is rejected by Lady Anya Waynwood.[11]

House Royce at the end of the third century

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



Historical Members


  1. 1.0 1.1 At this time, it is uncertain if Raymar Royce was an ancestor of Nestor Royce, or if "junior branch" refers to another branch of House Royce entirely.