Lord of Winterfell

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Lord of Winterfell
Office Ruler of Winterfell
Region North
Current Holder Lord Ramsay Bolton
Heir None

Lord of Winterfell or Lady of Winterfell is the title of the noble seated at the castle of Winterfell in the north.


Prior to Aegon's Conquest, the Lords of Winterfell styled themselves as Kings in the North.[1] Members of House Stark are interred in the crypt of Winterfell, with statues only being made for the lords and kings by tradition.[2] An iron longsword placed on each statue is said to keep vengeful spirits in the crypt.[1]

King Torrhen Stark peacefully yielded to King Aegon I Targaryen during the Conquest. After Torrhen gave up his crown, Aegon named him Lord of Winterfell and Warden of the North.[3]

Relations between Houses Stark and Targaryen were troublesome during the first century of the Targaryen dynasty. At the behest of Queen Rhaenys Targaryen, Lord Torrhen married his daughter to Lord Ronnel Arryn, though after much protest. His sons even spoke of rebelling.[4] King Jaehaerys I Targaryen and Queen Alysanne Targaryen forced Lord Alaric Stark to donate land to the Night's Watch, which was renamed the New Gift, leaving the Starks bitter.[5] According to Maester Yandel, this might have been the reason why Lord Ellard Stark supported the claim of Laenor Velaryon over the claim of Prince Viserys Targaryen during the Great Council of 101 AC.[6]

Lord Cregan Stark agreed to support Rhaenyra Targaryen during the Dance of the Dragons with the Pact of Ice and Fire.[4] Cregan delayed giving aid, however,[7] and by the time he led his army south King Aegon II Targaryen had been poisoned and Lord Corlys Velaryon had already send out ravens suing for peace, preventing Cregan from punishing the lords who had supported Aegon II. While the court awaited the replies, Cregan held sway and arrested all those involved in Aegon II's death, cowing the young Prince Aegon the Younger, soon-to-be crowned King Aegon III Targaryen, into naming him Hand of the King. Cregan served only a single day in that office, a time known as the Hour of the Wolf, and held trials for twenty-one out of twenty-two of his prisoners. The only one spared a trial was Lord Corlys; Aegon pardoned him and restored his titles to him, and Cregan agreed to allow it when Aly Blackwood offered him her hand in marriage. Cregan returned north the next day.[8]

In the past century, several of the Lords of Winterfell died in battle. Lord Barthogan Stark died in the Skagosi rebellion during the reign of Daeron II Targaryen,[9] and Lord Beron Stark[10] was injured after facing the ironborn of Dagon Greyjoy, Lord of the Iron Islands, early in the reign of Aerys I Targaryen. As he slowly succumbed to his wounds, his wife and several recent Stark widows struggled over the succession, as there were multiple potential heirs.[11][12] Lord Willam Stark was killed by Raymun Redbeard, the King-Beyond-the-Wall, in 226 AC.[13][14]

In 282 AC, Lord Rickard Stark was killed alongside his heir, Brandon, by King Aerys II Targaryen, which sparked the outbreak of Robert's Rebellion, in which Lord Eddard Stark was one of the leaders.

Recent Events

A Game of Thrones

After the death of Jon Arryn, Lord of the Eyrie, King Robert I Baratheon names Lord Eddard Stark as his Hand of the King.[1] After Robert dies, Eddard is arrested for treason[15] and later executed.[16] Robb Stark now the Lord of Winterfell, marches south with an army.[17] After the Battle of the Camps, Robb is declared King in the North by northmen and rivermen gathered at Riverrun.[18]

A Storm of Swords

Tywin Lannister, Lord of Casterly Rock, marries his son Tyrion to Robb's sister, Sansa Stark, so they can use Sansa's claim on Winterfell to claim the north when Tyrion fathers a son on her.[19]

King Robb is murdered in the Red Wedding.[20]

King Stannis Baratheon offers to legitimize Eddard's bastard son, Jon Snow, and name him Lord of Winterfell.[21] Stannis plans to marry Val to his new Lord of Winterfell.[21] Jon considers the offer, but realizes he cannot forsake his father's gods, which is one of the conditions of becoming Lord of Winterfell. Jon is elected as Lord Commander of the Night's Watch not long after.[22]

A Dance with Dragons

Stannis offers once more to make Jon the Lord of Winterfell, but Jon refuses, insisting that Winterfell belongs to his half sister, Sansa. Stannis considers granting Winterfell to Arnolf Karstark instead.[23]

Ramsay Bolton marries "Arya Stark" (actually Jeyne Poole),[24] through which he becomes the Lord of Winterfell,[25] although he has already used the title prior to the wedding.[26]

Lords of Winterfell

The known Lords of Winterfell are:


The first Lords of Winterfell had been men hard as the land they ruled. In the centuries before the Dragonlords came over the sea, they had sworn allegiance to no man, styling themselves the Kings in the North.[1]

—thoughts of Eddard Stark

Your father's lands are bleeding, and I have neither the strength nor the time to stanch the wounds. What is needed is a Lord of Winterfell. A loyal Lord of Winterfell.[21]


  1. 1.0 1.1 1.2 1.3 A Game of Thrones, Chapter 4, Eddard I.
  2. 2.0 2.1 A Game of Thrones, Chapter 66, Bran VII.
  3. Fire & Blood, Aegon's Conquest.
  4. 4.0 4.1 4.2 The World of Ice & Fire, The North: The Lords of Winterfell.
  5. Fire & Blood, Jaehaerys and Alysanne - Their Triumphs and Tragedies.
  6. The World of Ice & Fire, The North: The Lords of Winterfell.
  7. The World of Ice & Fire, The Targaryen Kings: Aegon II.
  8. The World of Ice & Fire, The Targaryen Kings: Aegon III.
  9. 9.0 9.1 The World of Ice & Fire, The North: The Stoneborn of Skagos.
  10. 10.0 10.1 The Mystery Knight.
  11. 11.0 11.1 So Spake Martin: Boskone (February 17, 2006), report 1
  12. 12.0 12.1 So Spake Martin: Boskone (February 17, 2006), report 2
  13. A Dance with Dragons, Chapter 7, Jon II.
  14. The World of Ice & Fire, The Wall and Beyond: The Wildlings.
  15. A Game of Thrones, Chapter 49, Eddard XIV.
  16. A Game of Thrones, Chapter 65, Arya V.
  17. A Game of Thrones, Chapter 53, Bran VI.
  18. 18.0 18.1 A Game of Thrones, Chapter 71, Catelyn XI.
  19. A Storm of Swords, Chapter 32, Tyrion IV.
  20. A Storm of Swords, Chapter 41, Jon V.
  21. 21.0 21.1 21.2 A Storm of Swords, Chapter 76, Jon XI.
  22. A Storm of Swords, Chapter 79, Jon XII.
  23. A Dance with Dragons, Chapter 17, Jon IV.
  24. 24.0 24.1 A Dance with Dragons, Chapter 37, The Prince of Winterfell.
  25. 25.0 25.1 A Dance with Dragons, Chapter 19, Davos III.
  26. 26.0 26.1 A Dance with Dragons, Chapter 26, The Wayward Bride.
  27. The World of Ice & Fire, The Reign of the Dragons: The Conquest.
  28. 28.0 28.1 28.2 asoiaf.westeros.org: The Wiki-Timeline Project v2 – Comment by Ran (March 16, 2020)
  29. Fire & Blood, The Year of the Three Brides - 49 AC.
  30. 30.0 30.1 Fire & Blood, A Surfeit of Rulers.
  31. Fire & Blood, The Long Reign - Jaehaerys and Alysanne: Policy, Progeny, and Pain.
  32. The World of Ice & Fire, The Targaryen Kings: Jaehaerys I.
  33. 33.00 33.01 33.02 33.03 33.04 33.05 33.06 33.07 33.08 33.09 33.10 33.11 33.12 The World of Ice & Fire, Appendix: Stark Lineage.
  34. 34.0 34.1 34.2 34.3 34.4 34.5 34.6 34.7 34.8 A Clash of Kings, Chapter 69, Bran VII.
  35. A Game of Thrones, Appendix.
  36. A Clash of Kings, Chapter 11, Theon I.