Vale of Arryn

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The Vale of Arryn and the location of the Vale proper
The Vale of Arryn and the location of the Vale proper
Vale of Arryn
The Vale of Arryn and the location of the Vale proper[1]
For the smaller valley from which the region takes its name, see Vale of Arryn (valley).

The Vale of Arryn or the Vale is one of the constituent regions of the Seven Kingdoms of Westeros. It was formerly a sovereign nation ruled by the Kings of Mountain and Vale before the War of Conquest. The Mountains of the Moon surround the smaller Vale proper,[2] although the valley's name is often applied to all of the Arryns' realm.[3]

The Vale is ruled by House Arryn from the castle known as the Eyrie. Notable houses of this region include Baelish, Belmore, Corbray, Egen, Grafton, Hersy, Hunter, Melcolm, Redfort, Royce, Templeton, and Waynwood.[4][5] Bastards of noble origin raised in the Vale are given the surname Stone.


Map (click to zoom)

See also: Category:Places in the Vale

The borders of the Vale are held to be the Bite to the north, the Bay of Crabs to the south, the Mountains of the Moon and then the riverlands to the west, and the narrow sea to the east. The Vale consists of various regions: the Vale of Arryn itself; the Mountains of the Moon; the snakewood; the Fingers; and the islands of the Three Sisters, the Paps, and Pebble.

The Vale is located on the eastern shore of Westeros, a land of fertile soil, rivers, and lakes, protected by its largely impassable Mountains of the Moon. The Vale tends to be slightly isolated from the rest of Westeros. Its harsh winters make travel only possible through the mountains during warmer years, and rebellious mountain clans make travel even more dangerous. The Vale can be reached through the high road, which connects the Vale and the riverlands, and is protected by the Bloody Gate.

The mountainous border of the Vale of Arryn proper appears to include the Bloody Gate in the west and the Eyrie and Longbow Hall to the north. The fertile lands within the valley include Ironoaks, Old Anchor, Redfort, and a peninsula containing the city of Gulltown and Runestone. The town of Wickenden is located along the Bay of Crabs, in the mountains south of the valley. Castles north of the Vale proper in the valleys of the Mountains of the Moon and the snakewood forest[3] include Coldwater, Heart's Home, Snakewood, and Strongsong.[1]

People and Economy

Vale of Arryn by Cris Urdiales ©

See also: Vale mountain clans

The Valemen,[6] the people of the Vale, are known as reliable warriors steeped in honor and the worship of the Faith of the Seven. Some of the people living in the foothills of the Mountains of the Moon have rejected the authority of the Eyrie and live by their own rules. These mountain clans, such as the Black Ears and the Burned Men, are descendents of the First Men[2] who raid unwary travelers. The people of the Three Sisters are known as Sistermen.[7]

Wheat, corn, and barley is grown in the Vale. Not even in Highgarden do the pumpkins grow any larger nor is the fruit any sweeter. House Waxley is known for producing scented candles in Wickenden. The candles can be scented with nutmeg and other costly spices.

According to a semi-canon source from 2005,[8] the Vale can perhaps raise forty-five thousand soldiers.


During the Age of Heroes, the Vale was thinly populated and was ruled by a score of petty First Men kings. The Winged Knight is among the legendary heroes of the Valemen from thousands of years ago.[5]

The Vale was where the Andals landed when they began their invasion of Westeros. Rather than unite against the newcomers, many of the First Men rulers sought alliances with the Andals, often with disastrous results.[9] House Arryn claimed the Vale after defeating the First Men in the Battle of the Seven Stars.[9] As such, the Arryns are one of the oldest lines of Andal nobility in the Seven Kingdoms. The Arryns ruled as Kings of Mountain and Vale for approximately six thousand years. Those First Men who did not accept Andal rule fled into the Mountains of the Moon, becoming the mountain clans.[9]

Following the Rape of the Three Sisters two thousand years ago, the Vale warred with the north for a thousand years.[10] The Wolf's Den was besieged by Osgood Arryn and burned by the Talon during the War Across the Water between the two kingdoms.[11] The Three Sisters swore fealty to the Arryns, although their loyalty is tenuous.[10]

The Arryns bent the knee to Aegon the Conqueror during the Targaryens' War of Conquest, bringing the Vale under the control of the Iron Throne.[7] During the Dance of the Dragons, Jacaerys Velaryon gained the Vale for the cause of the blacks.[12] The Vale remained loyal to the Targaryens during the First Blackfyre Rebellion.[13] The Arryns blocked access to the Vale during the Great Spring Sickness.[13]

Robert's Rebellion began in the Vale, when Lord Jon Arryn refused to surrender his wards Robert Baratheon and Eddard Stark to King Aerys II Targaryen. Defeating his royalist bannermen at Gulltown, Lord Arryn went on to help Robert secure the Iron Throne, and was named his Hand after the war. In Lord Arryn's absence, Nestor Royce governed as High Steward of the Vale.

Recent Events

A hidden pass in the Vale. © FFG

A Game of Thrones

After Lord Jon Arryn's sudden death, his widow Lysa flees with their son, Robert Arryn, from King's Landing to the Eyrie. Her sister, Catelyn Stark, abducts Tyrion Lannister at the crossroads and brings her captive to the Vale instead of Winterfell, which leads Lord Tywin Lannister to begin warfare in the riverlands.

A Clash of Kings

Lysa refuses to lend the Vale's strength to any side of the War of the Five Kings.

A Storm of Swords

After the death of King Joffrey Baratheon, Petyr Baelish helps Sansa Stark escape King's Landing and brings her to the Vale. Lysa marries Petyr at the Fingers, but he later pushes her through the Eyrie's Moon Door.

A Feast for Crows

Petyr rules as Lord Protector of the Vale and the guardian of the orphaned Lord Robert Arryn, to the consternation of the Lords Declarant. The court descends from the Eyrie to the Gates of the Moon.[14]

A Dance with Dragons

Davos Seaworth washes up on Sweetsister, but Lord Godric Borrell allows Davos to continue to White Harbor instead of turning him over to Lord Triston Sunderland.[10]


House Arryn.PNG House Arryn of the Eyrie.
House Unknown House Arryn of Gulltown.
OldBaelish.png House Baelish of the Fingers.
Belmore.PNG House Belmore of Strongsong.
Borell.png House Borrell of Sweetsister.
House Coldwater.PNG House Coldwater of Coldwater Burn.
Corbray.png House Corbray of Heart's Home.
Donniger.png House Donniger.
House Egen.PNG House Egen.
Elesham.png House Elesham of the Paps.
Grafton.png House Grafton of Gulltown.
House Hardyng.PNG House Hardyng.
Hersy.png House Hersy of Newkeep.
House Hunter.PNG House Hunter of Longbow Hall.
House Unknown House Longthorpe of Longsister.
Lynderly.png House Lynderly of Snakewood.
House Melcolm.PNG House Melcolm of Old Anchor.
House Moore.PNG House Moore.
Pryor.PNG House Pryor of Pebble.
House Redfort.png House Redfort of Redfort.
Royce.png House Royce of Runestone.
House Royce of the Gates of the Moon.png House Royce of the Gates of the Moon.
Ruthermont.png House Ruthermont.
Shett (Gulltown).png House Shett of Gulltown.
Shett (Gull Tower).png House Shett of Gull Tower.
Sunderland.png House Sunderland of the Three Sisters.
House Templeton.png House Templeton of Ninestars.
House Tollett.PNG House Tollett of the Grey Glen.
House Unknown House Torrent of Littlesister.
Upcliff.png House Upcliff of the Witch Isle.
Waxley large.png House Waxley of Wickenden.
House Waynwood.PNG House Waynwood of Ironoaks.
Wydman.png House Wydman.


It stretched before them to the misty east, a tranquil land of rich black soil, wide slow-moving rivers, and hundreds of small lakes that shone like mirrors in the sun, protected on all sides by its sheltering peaks.[15]
- thoughts of Catelyn Stark

My lords, with your leave, I propose to travel to the Vale and there woo and win Lady Lysa Arryn. Once I am her consort, I shall deliver you the Vale of Arryn without a drop of blood being spilled.[16]
Petyr Baelish to the small council

The lords of the Vale are numerous. As with any large group, their views vary.[17]
- George R. R. Martin

References and Notes

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