House Umber

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House Umber of the Last Hearth
Coat of arms Gules, a roaring giant proper with shattered chains argent
Seat Last Hearth
Current Lord Jon Umber
Region The North
Title Lord of the Last Hearth
Overlord House Bolton

House Umber of the Last Hearth is a noble house from Last Hearth in the North. They are sworn to Winterfell and House Stark, to whom they are fiercely loyal. The head of the house is Lord Jon Umber, called the Greatjon. The Umber sigil is a roaring giant, brown-haired and wearing a skin, with broken silver chains, on flame-red.[1]



The Umbers are hardy people, tempered by the rough northern climate. They control the harsh land along the Bay of Seals, south of the New Gift and extending west to the kingsroad - a place of wild hills and ancient forests of oak and pine. Their lands include the northern Last River and the Lonely Hills. The kingsroad runs along the western marches of Umber territory for a hundred leagues.[2] Most of their land is east of the kingsroad, but the Umbers graze their sheep in the high meadows of the northern mountains in summer.[3]

House Umber is an ancient house, tracing descent from the First Men and were once First Men kings themselves. Yet the Starks, the Kings of Winter, proved to be the stronger house. For after many struggles the Umbers were reduced from royals to vassals of this mighty house.[4]

The Umbers' proximity to the Wall puts them at risk of wildling raids and they have often been called upon to help defend against wildling raiders.[5] Most notably, the Umbers joined the Starks in defeating Kings-beyond-the-Wall such as Raymun Redbeard and the brothers Gendel and Gorne. A cousin of Lord Umber's was carried off in a wildling raid. The Umber also feature in an old legend, the legend of the Night's King. Amongst other possibilities, the Night's King is rumored to have been an member of this house.[6]

During Robert's Rebellion, the Umbers followed Lord Eddard Stark to war, with both of Mors Umber's sons dying at the Battle of the Trident.

Although they deny it, Umber lords are rumored to still practice the banned tradition of the lord's right to first night.[7]

Recent Events

A Game of Thrones

After Lord Eddard Stark's arrest in King's Landing, House Umber answers Robb Stark's call to arms, with Umber men led by the Greatjon following him south, leaving his uncles Mors "Crowfood" and Hother "Whoresbane" in command at Last Hearth. Despite an initial row, the Greatjon becomes one of Robb's strongest supporters and fiercest battle commanders. Lord Umber's eldest son, the Smalljon, rides as one of Robb's personal guard. When the Stark host quarters at Moat Cailin on their march south, the Last Hearth men garrison in the Children's Tower. During the Battle of the Whispering Wood, the Greatjon has an independent command, and in the subsequent Battle of the Camps he rides in from the west with the Mallisters and sets fire to the Lannister siege towers. Following the death of Ned Stark, House Umber supports Robb as his heir, with the Greatjon proclaiming him the King in the North.

A Clash of Kings

The Umber men in the south accompany King Robb on his campaign in the Westerlands. The Greatjon captures several gold mines after the Battle of Oxcross, and the Smalljon leads men scaling the walls at the Battle of the Crag. Meanwhile Lord Umber's uncles attend the harvest feast at Winterfell. Hother requests ships to fight wildlings in the Bay of Seals, and is told to work with Lord Wyman Manderly to build a fleet. Mors puts himself forward as a match for the widowed Donella Hornwood, but is rejected.

After Theon Greyjoy captures Winterfell, he tells his sister Asha that the Umbers are gathering beyond the Last River to help liberate the Stark seat.[8] Theon does not see any Umbers in the army of Ser Rodrik Cassel prior to the battle at Winterfell, however.[9]

A Storm of Swords

The Greatjon and the Smalljon are still with Robb's army, returning with him to the Riverlands from the west. The Greatjon and his men subdue Lord Rickard Karstark after he murders the Lannister squires at Riverrun, with two Umber men being wounded in the process. The Greatjon punches Rickard when the other bannerman calls Robb boy, and hangs the other seven Karhold men who took part. At the Red Wedding, the Greatjon gets drunk, competing with Whalen Frey and Merrett Frey. It takes eight men to subdue him, of which he kills one, injures two others and bites half an ear off Ser Leslyn Haigh. The Greatjon is captured and imprisoned at the Twins, and his heir the Smalljon is murdered by Bolton men. It is unknown who the current heir is.

Maester Aemon sends a raven to the Last Hearth in a plea for help to defend Castle Black from wildlings.

A Dance with Dragons

With the Greatjon imprisoned, Queen Cersei claims the Umbers have grudgingly joined with House Bolton, whom the Lannisters have raised as Warden of the North in House Stark's stead. This is only partly true: Hother Whoresbane leads half the remaining Umber men under Lord Roose Bolton's banner, although Roose considers them untrustworthy, but Mors Crowfood has joined the cause of Stannis Baratheon, who is liberating the North from Bolton and Greyjoy alike. Mors makes it clear that Umber will not fight Umber for any cause.[2]

Hother leads three hundred spears and a hundred archers south to Moat Cailin.[10] He later commands the Umber contingent at Winterfell for the wedding of Ramsay Bolton to "Arya Stark", actually Jeyne Poole.[11] The Umber men with Mors camp outside of the castle and blow horns to disorient Roose's forces. After they escape from Winterfell, Theon Greyjoy and Jeyne are brought by Mors to the crofters' village.[12]

The Winds of Winter

Theon reveals to Stannis that Aenys Frey was killed when Frey forces rode into pits dug by Mors Crowfood's men. The troops with Mors are green boys while those with Hother are greybeards.[13]

House Umber at the end of the third century

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

Unknown Umber
Mors "Crowfood"
Hother "Whoresbane"
Jon "Greatjon"
Unknown Umbers
(at least 2 brothers)
Jon "Smalljon"
At least one
more son
At least
2 daughters

Historical members


House Umber champion. © FFG
The Umbers may seem simple, but they are not without a certain low cunning.[7]
- Roose Bolton to Theon Greyjoy

References and Notes

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