|Allegiance||Faith of the Seven|
|Born||In 247 AC or 248 AC, at the riverlands|
|Book(s)||A Feast for Crows (appears)|
Appearance and Character
- See also: Images of Meribald
Meribald is six feet tall and walks with a slight hunch. He has large, leathery hands and large, bare, weathered feet. His face is lined and windburnt with thick grey hair.
Meribald's usual path takes him around most of the countryside, circling the region from Maidenpool to Maidenpool, and is said to take no less than half a year per circuit. Because he usually ministers to the smallfolk in market towns, small villages, and holdfasts, he is not as familiar with the Trident and its castles as he is with the smallroads, tracks, hedges, and unmapped rills and caves.
Meribald travels alone in most of his walks with only his dog, Dog, as his companion. Normally, he also takes a donkey to carry his heavy load, including packs of food and goods he means to give to the hungry and poor of the villages he passes by.
Meribald was born and has lived his entire life in the riverlands. As a boy, Meribald went to fight in the War of the Ninepenny Kings with his brothers. His older brother, Willam, agreed to jokingly take Meribald as his squire. During the war, however, both Willam and another brother, Robin, died from a fever. His last brother, Owen, was killed in battle and Owen's friend, Jon Pox, was hanged for rape. Meribald may have become a broken man because of this. When he returned to the riverlands, he joined the Faith of the Seven, but used his position as a world-savvy septon to convince young women to have sex with him. He now walks barefoot as penance for these sins he committed as a youth.
He cannot read or write, but he knows the Seven-Pointed Star by memory which seemed to make him capable enough to minister the Faith to the smallfolk of the riverlands. He has been walking the countryside of the riverlands as a wandering septon in exchange for food and shelter for nearly forty years.
A Feast for Crows
Septon Meribald guides Brienne of Tarth, Podrick Payne, and Ser Hyle Hunt through the riverlands to Saltpans, where he took his first stop on his circuit. Along the way, he spooks Podrick with stories of mud along the Trident's mudflats that can swallow up ignorant travelers and tales of a large, monstrous, man-eating, demon-like she-wolf that leads a pack of savage wolves prowling throughout the Trident.
Meribald also tells his own story, explaining how he came to be a septon and his duties to the smallfolk of the riverlands. During their travels they discuss a bit of theology. Brienne points out that at Evenfall Hall her father's septon always said that there was but one god. Septon Meribald answers,
|“||One god with seven aspects. That’s so my lady, and you are right to point it out, but the mystery of the Seven Who Are One is not easy for simple folk to grasp, and I am nothing if not simple, so I speak of seven gods. ||”|
Meribald guides Brienne and her companions to the Quiet Isle to meet the Elder Brother. Meribald's fate after Brienne's battle with Biter at the inn at the crossroads is unknown besides the fact that he was allowed to continue on his way by the brotherhood without banners.
|“||Hyle: The War of the Ninepenny Kings?
Meribald: So they called it, though I never saw a king, nor earned a penny. It was war, though. That it was.