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Help: Referencing and Canon

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Our intention is to provide reliable information about the world of A Song of Ice and Fire. To this end, the information in articles should provide an accurate description of the background, events, characters, etc. The information should also be objective, using facts that can be verified independently by other readers. Referencing the information allows editors to provide sources for statements in articles based on a reliable source.


Canon is a term used to denote officially accepted material within fictional work, for the purpose of creating an authentic and consistent corpus; i.e. characters, locations, events and settings details that are considered to be genuine (or "official"). The following policy outlines what is considered part of the canon and what is not on this wiki.

The canon is broken down into two levels: Canon and Semi-canon. Together, these two levels form the overall A Song of Ice and Fire continuity. Each ascending level overrides the lower ones; for example, Mago is killed in the first season of the television series Game of Thrones, but he still lives in the novels as of A Dance with Dragons. Therefore, he is considered officially alive in the overall story.

  • Canon: Primary canon, consisting of works written by or with primary involvement of George R. R. Martin, such as the novels of A Song of Ice and Fire, the Dunk and Egg novellas, and The World of Ice & Fire world book, but excluding his TV show scripts which are written to the TV show canon as established by its own showrunners, and writings expressly placed outside of canon such as his Cage Match 2010 write-ups. Martin has indicated that the world book is "authoritative" and the novels are "supreme canon".[1] Regarding inconsistencies between published works, Martin said, "The novels always trump."[2]
  • Semi-Canon: Secondary canon, consisting of information verified as having been given by Martin outside of the published works. This includes information given to officially licensed third parties, such as the television show and roleplaying games, and information given through So Spake Martin, Not A Blog, correspondence with fans, readings and signings, statements in interviews, samples or excerpts from unpublished manuscripts, etc. A Song of Ice and Fire Campaign Guide from 2010, for instance, has been considered "changeable canon", and has been contradicted by newer publications, such as The World of Ice and Fire from 2014. The reference app, A World of Ice and Fire, is also considered semi-canon.[3] Please note the "verified" qualifier -- origin with Martin must be an established fact, not simply assumed, and must clearly refer to his series as opposed to the canon of any derivative works. If two pieces of secondary canon appear to contradict each other, it should generally be assumed that the most recently given information is correct.

The key point in determining canon is that it must be from George R. R. Martin. Any content that cannot be determined as having originated with or been expressly regarded as canon by Martin cannot in itself be considered canon.


Being able to provide verifiable source references increase the reliability of your wiki and allow others to check and extend your work. To add a reference in the simplest way, place your source/explanation between the <ref>...</ref> tags, at the appropriate place in the article text, for example:

<ref>''[[A Game of Thrones]]'', [[A Game of Thrones-Chapter 9|Chapter 9]], Tyrion I</ref>
<ref>[[So Spake Martin]]: [http://www.westeros.org/Citadel/SSM/Entry/Highgarden_and_the_Rock Highgarden and the Rock (January 28, 1999)]</ref>

These would appear on the page as follows:

A Game of Thrones, Chapter 9, Tyrion I
So Spake Martin: Highgarden and the Rock (January 28, 1999)

The references appear as links that link to a detailed explanation further down the page.

For sources from the novels, you can also use the Ref Template. For example:


automatically generates the following:

A Game of Thrones, Chapter 9, Tyrion I

The Ref Template groups references to the same source, avoiding excessive long reference list spam when one reference is used multiple times on the same page. Therefore, this template has become the preferred option for sourcing.

To make the list of references appear on the page, as you can see below, add the {{References}} tag to the page, for example:

==References and Notes==

This only needs to be done once, by the first editor to add references. For further information on this template see its documentation page

References and Notes