High Septon (fat one)

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Star of the Faith.svg
Star of the Faith.svg
High Septon
Joshua Cairos - High Septon.jpg
The High Septon by Joshua Cairós © Fantasy Flight Games

Alias(es) The fat one[1]
Title(s) High Septon
Father of the Faithful
His High Holiness
Shepherd of the Faithful
Voice of the Seven on Earth
Allegiance Faith of the Seven
Died In 299 AC, at King's Landing
Book(s) A Game of Thrones (appears)
A Clash of Kings (appears)
A Storm of Swords (mentioned)
A Feast for Crows (mentioned)
A Dance with Dragons (mentioned)

The fat High Septon is the High Septon of the Faith of the Seven at the beginning of A Song of Ice and Fire. His real name is unknown as High Septons abandon their names once elected to office.

Appearance and Character

The High Septon is a squat man and ponderously fat with grey hair,[2] considered corrupt, gluttonous,[3] pompous and long-winded.[4] He has a deep voice when speaking to crowds.[5] Ser Jaime Lannister thinks he is a "fat fraud".[6]

The High Septon wears long white robes and a large crown of spun gold and crystal.[2]

History

The High Septon has been in his position for some time. When over two hundred jars of wildfire were discovered beneath the Great Sept of Baelor around 298 AC, he was livid with fear. Varys had Hallyne of the Alchemists' Guild and his acolytes remove the jars.[3]

Recent Events

A Game of Thrones

In the first session of the small council presided over by the new Hand of the King, Lord Eddard Stark, Lord Petyr Baelish informs the council members that in his attempts to borrow more money for the Crown he had to turn to the Faith of the Seven lately.[7]

At the feast during the Hand's tourney, Moon Boy sings a song about the High Septon that causes many of the guests to laugh, including Septa Mordane.[8]

The fat High Septon is present when Eddard is brought to the Great Sept of Baelor. Having been told by Queen Regent Cersei Lannister that Eddard would be pardoned and allowed to join the Night's Watch, like many of the onlookers he is shocked when King Joffrey I Baratheon orders Eddard's execution. He clutches the king's cape in an attempt to stop him.[2]

A Clash of Kings

The High Septon in Game of Thrones

The High Septon is furious at House Lannister and feels that the Great Sept of Baelor has been befouled by Eddard Stark's death.[9]

When the small council discusses reactions to the letters in which Stannis Baratheon alleges that Cersei Lannister's children are the result of incest, Tyrion Lannister suggests that Stannis's apparent conversion to the faith of R'hllor can be used against him and that the High Septon should be urged to reveal how Stannis has turned against both the rightful king and the gods.[10]

The High Septon is a target in the rantings of a prophet of the begging brothers who addresses a crowd on Cobbler's Square when Tyrion's litter passes along.[3]

Cersei calls on the High Septon at the Great Sept of Baelor, in which she briefly seeks the blessings of the gods for the upcoming struggle against Stannis, as cover for meetings with the Kettleblacks, who are so supposed to hire her her own force of sellwords to rival her brother's.[4]

The fat High Septon goes to the docks to bless Myrcella Baratheon when the girl is about to sail to Dorne, giving one of his long-winded speeches. On the way back to the Red Keep, however, a riot breaks out that results in many deaths. Once the royal party reaches the safety of the Red Keep, Lord Gyles Rosby recalls having seen the High Septon pulled from his litter by the angry mob, and Jalabhar Xho thought he saw Ser Preston Greenfield of the Kingsguard enter the crowd to save him.[4] Ser Jacelyn Bywater later reports that the High Septon had been ripped apart while appealing to the gods to save him, and Preston was found dead as well. The High Septon's crystal crown is missing when his remains are found.[4]

Upon hearing of the High Septon's death, Tyrion thinks that "starving men take a dim view of priests too fat to walk."[4] Subsequently, Tyrion arranges for a replacement.[11]

A Storm of Swords

The small council is informed that crystals from the fat High Septon's crown have been discovered and that the thieves apparently melted the gold.[12]

A Feast for Crows

When the new High Septon greets Queen Regent Cersei Lannister on the steps of the Great Sept of Baelor, before the wake for Lord Tywin Lannister, Cersei recalls his predecessor as gluttonous and biddable. She is disturbed by the thought that the new High Septon is of Tyrion's making,[13] and she eventually has the thinner and older High Septon assassinated by Ser Osney Kettleblack.[14]

Quotes by the High Septon

High Septon: As we sin, so do we suffer. This man has confessed his crimes in the sight of gods and men, here in this holy place. The gods are just, yet Blessed Baelor taught us that they are also merciful. What shall be done with this traitor, Your Grace?
Joffrey: My mother bids me let Lord Eddard take the black, and Lady Sansa has begged mercy for her father. But they have the soft hearts of women. So long as I am your king, treason shall never go unpunished. Ser Ilyn, bring me his head![2]

—The High Septon and Joffrey I Baratheon

Quotes about the High Septon

The High Septon haggles worse than a Dornish fishmonger.[7]

Even the High Septon has forgotten the gods! He bathes in scented waters and grows fat on lark and lamprey while his people starve![3]

—Begging brother to a crowd

What was it that Moon Boy had said of him the other day? A pious man who worships the Seven so fervently that he eats a meal for each of them whenever he sits to table. The memory of the fool's jape made Tyrion smile.[3]

—thoughts of Tyrion Lannister

References