Skagos is a large island in the mouth of the Bay of Seals. In theory, the island is part of the north and subject to House Stark of Winterfell. However, the island has very little contact with the mainland, and in practice they rule themselves. The name “Skagos” means “stone” in the Old Tongue.
Maester Balder's The Edge of the World is the largest collection of tales regarding the island. A popular myth states that unicorns live on Skagos. The island has a dread reputation; even the hardened sailor Roro Uhoris feared to go there.
The large island is located in the mouth of the Bay of Seals, off the northeastern coast of Westeros. Nearby is the isle Skane and beyond it is the Shivering Sea. Skagos is mountainous and forbidding with rough and treacherous currents around the isle. Sailing is hazardous, especially during the autumn storms when the cold can freeze ropes and sails.
According to The Edge of the World by Maester Balder, in ancient days men of Skagos sailed to the nearby island Skane, seizing all the women, killing all the men, and feasting on their flesh for a fortnight. Skane has been uninhabited since.
The people of Skagos tended to cross the Bay of Seals to trade and raid on the mainland until King Brandon IX Stark broke their power, destroying their ships and forbidding them the sea. It is not known at what time Skagos ultimately became subject to the supremacy of Winterfell, but they rose in rebellion against House Stark during the rule of King Daeron II Targaryen. The rebellion lasted for years and claimed the lives of thousands, among them Lord Barthogan Stark, before being put down.
Some Skagosi have served in the Night's Watch over the past millennia. A Crowl was Lord Commander over a thousand years ago, and, according to the Annals of the Black Centaur, a Stane served as First Ranger for a brief time.
The people of Skagos are known as Skagosi (or Skagossons), which means "stoneborn" in the Old Tongue. They are an isolated people descended from the First Men. Some maesters believe Skagosi have a strong admixture of Ibbenese blood, whereas others suggest they may be partially descended from giants.
The people of Skagos are generally despised by the rest of the northmen, who derisively call them "Skaggs". They regard Skagosi as little more than tribes of raiders and savages, not dissimilar to wildlings. They are considered a backward folk, rumored to still perform human sacrifices to weirwoods, lure passing ships to destruction with false lights, and engage in cannibalism during winter. When they do consent to trade with outsiders instead of murdering them, they offer pelts, obsidian blades and arrowheads, and "unicorn" horns. According to Lord Roose Bolton, the inhabitants of Skagos still continue the banned tradition of the first night.
A Dance with Dragons
|“||Only heart trees ever see half of what they do on Skagos.||”|
References and Notes
- ↑ So Spake Martin: The Drowned God and More (July 14, 1999)
- ↑ 2.0 2.1 2.2 2.3 2.4 2.5 A Feast for Crows, Chapter 15, Samwell II.
- ↑ 3.0 3.1 3.2 3.3 The World of Ice and Fire, The North: The Stoneborn of Skagos.
- ↑ 4.0 4.1 4.2 4.3 A Dance with Dragons, Chapter 9, Davos I.
- ↑ A Dance with Dragons, Chapter 17, Jon IV.
- ↑ A Clash of Kings, Chapter 51, Jon VI.
- ↑ 7.0 7.1 A Dance with Dragons, Chapter 32, Reek III.
- ↑ A Storm of Swords, Chapter 48, Jon VI.
- ↑ A Dance with Dragons, Chapter 20, Reek II.
- ↑ A Dance with Dragons, Chapter 29, Davos IV.
- ↑ George R. R. Martin's A World of Ice and Fire, Rickon Stark.