Black Gate

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The Black Gate, by Kerry Barnett © Fantasy Flight Games

The Black Gate is a magical gate below the Nightfort which allows passage through the Wall.[1]


The Nightfort's kitchens, a stone octagon with a broken dome, contain a huge central well which descends into the earth. A skinny weirwood has grown through the kitchens' slate floor. The well has stone steps which circle down to its depths,[1] and the Black Gate at its bottom is said to be findable and accessible only by members of the Night's Watch.[1]

Set deep in the wall of the well, the Black Gate is made of faintly-glowing white weirwood. The old face on the wood is pale, shrunken, and wrinkled with blind white eyes. When someone approaches the Black Gate, the blind eyes open and the face asks them to identify themselves. If a man of the Night's Watch repeats a part of his vow, the Black Gate will allow admittance. The door's lips open wider and wider still until nothing remains but a great gaping mouth in a ring of wrinkles.[1]


The Black Gate is as old as the Wall.[1]

Recent Events

A Storm of Swords

Coldhands guides Samwell Tarly, Gilly, and her baby from beyond the Wall to the Black Gate. While Coldhands, unable to pass through the Wall, remains on the northern side with his elk, the other three pass through the Black Gate to reach the Nightfort.[1] Bran Stark, Meera and Jojen Reed, Hodor, and Summer encounter Sam when the black brother ascends the well's steps to the Nightfort's kitchens. Sam leads them down the well to the Black Gate, and he recites part of his Night's Watch vows to allow the travelers to pass through the Wall.[1]


Jojen: How did you get through the Wall? Does the well lead to an underground river, is that where you came from? You're not even wet ..
Samwell: There's a gate. A hidden gate, as old as the Wall itself. The Black Gate, he called it.[1]

A glow came from the wood, like milk and moonlight, so faint it scarcely seemed to touch anything beyond the door itself, not even Sam standing right before it. The face was old and pale, wrinkled and shrunken. It looks dead. Its mouth was closed, and its eyes; its cheeks were sunken, its brow withered, its chin sagging. If a man could live for a thousand years and never die but just grow older, his face might come to look like that.[1]

—thoughts of Bran Stark

Black Gate: Who are you?

Samwell: I am the sword in the darkness. I am the watcher on the walls. I am the fire that burns against the cold, the light that brings the dawn, the horn that wakes the sleepers. I am the shield that guards the realms of men.

Black Gate: Then pass.[1]

—The Black Gate and Samwell Tarly