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Free City
HBO dothraki khalasar to Qohor.png
Qohor's army outside of the walls of the city
Location Essos, Free Cities, the Forest of Qohor
Religion Black Goat of Qohor
Organizations City watch

Qohor, also known as the City of Sorcerers,[1] is the easternmost of the nine Free Cities located in western Essos.[2]

Free Cities.png



Yhe city stands on the banks of the river Qhoyne, a tributary of the Rhoyne, on the western edge of the Forest of Qohor. It is seen as a gateway to the east.[1] Qohor is surrounded by strong stone walls.[1]

Northwest of Qohor is Norvos, and Volantis is to the south.[3][4] The Qohorik rule the Qhoyne north of the ruins of Ar Noy[5] and the eastern bank of the Darkwash, although that river's western bank is within the domains of Norvos.[6]


Maesters consider Qohor the most exotic of the Free Cities, due to its status as the western terminus for overland trade networks stretching all the way to Yi Ti (though this contact is often indirect). The dark arts, such as divination, blood magic, and necromancy, are believed to be practiced in the City of Sorcerers.[1]

The Qohorik believe in a dark god, the Black Goat of Qohor, who demands a daily blood sacrifice. Sacrifices can be calves, bullocks and horses, on regular days, but condemned criminals on holy days. In times of crisis, the nobles of the city are willing to sacrifice their own children in the hopes that their god will defend the city.[1] Followers of R'hllor can also be found in Qohor.[7]

Qohor is also famous for its hunters, foresters, and artisans.[1] The Qohorik have a small city watch. Ever since the events of the Three Thousand of Qohor, the city's defenses have instead been entrusted to Unsullied from Astapor, each carrying a spear with a braid of human hair.[1][8] Occasionally, Qohor also hires free companies, and is one of several Free Cities to offer gifts to Dothraki khals so that khalasars will pass on.[1]


A coin of Qohor, as depicted by Nutchapol Thitinunthakorn in The World of Ice & Fire

Due to its location, Qohor functions as the gateway to the Dothraki sea and the lands beyond. Trading caravans bound for or returning from Vaes Dothrak provision themselves in Qohor before heading towards the Dothraki sea. In turn, overland merchant caravans from Yi Ti head west over the Bone Mountains to Vaes Dothrak, where they trade with merchants from the Free Cities. The overland trade routes are long and can be dangerous, but they are preferred by merchants who wish to avoid the exorbitant taxes that Qarth imposes on the shipping lanes that pass through its straits to the south.[1] Trade has helped make Qohor one of the most richest of the Free Cities, although the city was richer before the Kingdom of Sarnor was destroyed.[1]

The Forest of Qohor is the principal source of wealth of the city. Timber is shipped down the Qhoyne to Dagger Lake, Selhorys, Valysar, Volon Therys, and Volantis.[1] Many other valuables can be found in the Forest of Qohor.[1][9] Qohorik tapestries are comparable in to those made by the Myrish, though cheaper. Exquisite wooden carvings are sold in the city's markets as well.[1]

Qohorik forges are considered to have no equal. The armor they create is seen as superior to the armor made in Westeros. They are capable of infusing a deep color into the metal with beautiful results. Additionally, the Qohorik are the only ones in the world who still possess the knowledge on how to rework Valyrian steel, a secret they guard strictly. According to Maester Pol, blood sacrifices are used when the Qohorik rework Valyrian steel.[1]



The initial settlement of Qohor was a lumber camp along the Forest of Qohor.[1] Qohor was colonized by followers of the Black Goat. The religious dissidents abandoned Valyria, rejecting the religious tolerance practiced by the Valyrian Freehold.[6]

Century of Blood

Shortly after the Doom of Valyria, the dragonlord Aurion raised a host of Qohorik colonists and proclaimed himself the Emperor of Valyria. He marched with thirty thousand men to claim what remained of the Valyrian peninsula, but none were seen again.[10]

At the start of the Century of Blood that followed the Doom, Khal Temmo rode from the east with a Dothraki khalasar of fifty thousand. The Dothraki crushed the Qohorik heavy horse, and the sellswords in the city's service fled. Three thousand Unsullied, slave soldiers from Astapor, withstood the Dothraki charges, however, and saved the city. Since the victory of the famed Three Thousand of Qohor, the city's defenses have been mostly left to the Unsullied.[8][1]

Towards the end of the Century of Blood, Qohor formed an alliance with Norvos and broke Volantene power on the Rhoyne in a battle involving fire galleys on Dagger Lake.[10][5] The Qohorik and Norvoshi are usually peaceful toward each other, although the bearded priests of Norvos consider the Black Goat to be demonic.[1]

Recent History

Shortly after being created in 212 AC,[11] the Golden Company sacked Qohor, after the city refused to honor the contract it had made with the company. This event established the reputation of the sellword company.[12]

Tobho Mott in King's Landing learned to smith in Qohor, and is one of the few to know how to rework Valyrian steel.[13] Maester Pol was whipped on three occasions when looking into the matter of reworking the steel. He eventually had a hand removed and was exiled.[1]

Ben Plumm claims to be part Qohorik, through his grandmother.[14] The slave Belwas was sold from Meereen to Qohor, before being sold to Pentos.[15] During their exile, Viserys and Daenerys Targaryen spent some time in Qohor when they were wandering from place to place.[16]

Qohor is visited every three or four years by Khal Zekko. The Qohorik give him gifts, however, and he moves his Dothraki khalasar on.[17]

Recent Events

A Game of Thrones

Vargo Hoat, by acazigot

Daenerys Targaryen passes Qohor during the journey of Khal Drogo's khalasar from Pentos to Vaes Dothrak.[9][18]

The Brave Companions, a sellsword company also known as the Bloody Mummers, are led by the Qohorik Vargo Hoat. At the start of the the War of the Five Kings, following the Battle of the Camps, Lord Tywin Lannister orders that they be sent out to pillage and burn the Riverlands.[19]

A Clash of Kings

The Brave Companions take part in the War of the Five Kings] on the side of House Lannister.[20][21] Vargo changes sides during the conflict, supporting Robb Stark instead, and aids Lord Roose Bolton against the Lannisters in the fall of Harrenhal.[22]

A Storm of Swords

Fearing retribution if Roose defects to the side of House Lannister, Vargo maims Ser Jaime Lannister by cutting off his sword hand,[23] hoping to break the possibility of an alliance between Roose and Lord Tywin Lannister.[24]

In the aftermath of the Red Wedding, Ser Gregor Clegane captures Harrenhal from the few remaining Brave Companions.[25][26] and Vargo's hands are cut off.[27] Vargo is killed by Gregor before the latter leaves for King's Landing.[28]

A Feast for Crows

Garin tells Arianne Martell that according to sailors in Planky Town, followers of R'hllor rioted in Qohor and tried to burn down the Black Goat.[7]