House Harlaw

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House Harlaw of Harlaw
House Harlaw.svg
Coat of arms A silver scythe on a black field
(Sable, a scythe argent)
Seat Ten Towers
Harlaw Hall (formerly)
Lord Lord Rodrik Harlaw
Region Iron Islands
Title Harlaw of Harlaw[1]
Lord of Harlaw[1]
Lord of Ten Towers[1]
Heir Ser Harras Harlaw
Overlord House Greyjoy
Cadet Branch House Harlaw of Grey Garden
House Harlaw of Harlaw Hall
House Harlaw of Harridan Hill
House Harlaw of the Tower of Glimmering
Founded Age of Heroes[2]

House Harlaw of Harlaw is one of the most powerful houses from the Iron Islands, ruling over the entire island of Harlaw from the castle of Ten Towers. Their blazon is a silver scythe on black.[3][4] Their motto has not appeared in the books.

All the other houses of Harlaw pledge fealty to them, including Houses Volmark, Stonetree, Myre, and Kenning. Cadet branches of the Harlaws are located at Grey Garden, Harlaw Hall, Harridan Hill, and the Tower of Glimmering.[5]



A longship of Ten Towers by Lukasz Jaskolski © Fantasy Flight Games

The Harlaws of antiquity were rock and salt kings on the island of Harlaw.[2] Myres and the Kennings had been their bitter foes in the past, but eventually they submitted to the Harlaws.[5]

The young Erich V Harlaw, High King of the Iron Islands, recovered Fair Isle for the ironborn, but he eventually lost the island once he grew old. His son, Harron Harlaw, slew Gareth II Gardener, King of the Reach, at Oldtown.[2]

Iron Throne

Lord Harlaw of Harlaw was put to the sword by westermen during Lady Johanna Lannister's invasion of the Iron Islands in 134 AC.[6]

The Harlaws' keep was Harlaw Hall until the era of Lord Theomore Harlaw, the grandfather of Lord Rodrik Harlaw's grandfather. Theomore had lost three newborn sons due to the dampness and unhealthiness of Harlaw Hall and decided to build a better located dwelling. Since Theomore was a man who often changed his opinion, he built ten different keeps that eventually were connected by wallwalks and covered bridges, creating the castle that would be known as the Ten Towers.[5]

After the death of their father, Rodrik Harlaw became the Lord of Harlaw instead of his sister, Gwynesse, who is seven years his elder.[5]

Ser Harras Harlaw, the wielder of Nightfall, was a friend of Rodrik Greyjoy.[7]

Recent Events

A Clash of Kings

Lady Alannys Harlaw dwells on Harlaw with her brother, Lord Rodrik Harlaw, and sister, Lady Gwynesse.[3][5]

Longships with the silver scythe of the Harlaws are seen by Theon Greyjoy at Lordsport after Balon Greyjoy calls his banners. When entering the great hall with his father's captains Theon sees some Harlaws from Harlaw.

Gevin, Dykk, and at least two other Harlaws join Theon during the harrying of the Stony Shore and the capture of Winterfell. They are probably slain by Bolton men in the sack of Winterfell.[8]

A Feast for Crows

Ten Towers by Trevor Cook © Fantasy Flight Games

After the death of Balon Greyjoy, the King of the Isles and the North, and the seizure of the Seastone Chair at Pyke by Euron Greyjoy, Lord Rodrik summons lords of the Iron Islands to Ten Towers on behalf of his niece, Asha Greyjoy.[9] Hotho Harlaw brings Rodrik a copy of Archmaester Marwyn's The Book of Lost Books from Oldtown trying to gain his favor, since Hotho hopes to marry his daughter to Rodrik. Lord Rodrik offers to make Asha the heir to Ten Towers, although Ser Harras Harlaw would still become head of the house. She rejects this offer, choosing to seek the driftwood crown.[5] Aeron Greyjoy calls for a kingsmoot at Old Wyk.[9]

Lord Harlaw's Sea Song is seen on the shores of Old Wyk[10] and Aeron Greyjoy spots the Harlaw scythe among the gathered banners for the kingsmoot.[11] When speaking to Asha before the kingsmoot, Victarion Greyjoy states that Hotho, not Harras, will be Rodrik's heir.[10] Rodrik offers full support to his niece Asha during the kingsmoot. His designated heir, Harras, also supports her as one of her three champions.[11] Hotho offers his daughter to Victarion and supports him,[10] but he is one of the first to shout Euron's name after he reveals his plans.[11]

Rodrik, Harras, and Hotho are part of the taking of the Shields commanded by King Euron. Hotho reports how Harras planted his standard beneath the Grimm castle and defied them to single combat. After seven champions had been defeated, Lord Guthor Grimm's septon decided the gods had spoken and surrendered Grimston.[7]

Victarion sees Lords Rodrik Harlaw, Gorold Goodbrother, and Dunstan Drumm talking at the yard of Oakenshield Castle. The three share their fear of a Tyrell reprisal. Harras is named Lord of Greyshield by Euron, a move Victarion interprets as a way to gain his loyalty at Rodrik's cost. This also makes Hotho the new heir to Ten Towers.[7]

A Dance with Dragons

Because Rodrik refuses to have Harlaws fight Harlaws, Asha flees Old Wyk for Deepwood Motte.[12]

House Harlaw at the end of the third century

Ten Towers Honor Guard by Tomasz Jedruszek © Fantasy Flight Games

The known Harlaws during the timespan of the events described in A Song of Ice and Fire are:

More distant relatives of Lord Rodrik include:

  • Ser Harras Harlaw, Rodrik's cousin and designated heir. The Knight of Grey Garden. Called "the Knight". His personal banner is the Harlaw scythe quartered with the peacock of his mother, a Serrett.
  • Hotho Harlaw, Rodrik's cousin, of the Tower of Glimmering. And ambitious man called "Hotho Humpback". His personal banner is the Harlaw scythe girdled within an embattled border.
  • Boremund Harlaw, Rodrik's cousin. Master of Harridan Hill. Called "Boremund the Blue". Father to three unnamed sons. His personal banner is the Harlaw scythe over a blue field.
  • Sigfryd Harlaw, Rodrik's great uncle. Master of Harlaw Hall. Called "Sigfryd Silverhair". He has sons and grandsons to follow him, but it is said that he intends to live forever. His personal banner is two scythes countercharged on a field divided bendwise.

With unspecified familiar relationship to the main branch there are also:

6 wives
3 sons
Lord Harlaw
3 sons

Historical Members

Sworn Houses


Asha: I need you to raise the men of Harlaw.
Rodrik: The men of Harlaw are here. The ones who count. Some were shouting Euron's name. I will not set Harlaw against Harlaw.[12]


  1. 1.0 1.1 1.2 A Feast for Crows, Appendix.
  2. 2.0 2.1 2.2 The World of Ice & Fire, The Iron Islands: Driftwood Crowns.
  3. 3.0 3.1 A Clash of Kings, Chapter 11, Theon I.
  4. The Citadel. Heraldry: Houses in the Iron Islands
  5. 5.00 5.01 5.02 5.03 5.04 5.05 5.06 5.07 5.08 5.09 5.10 A Feast for Crows, Chapter 11, The Kraken's Daughter.
  6. 6.0 6.1 Fire & Blood, The Lysene Spring and the End of Regency.
  7. 7.0 7.1 7.2 A Feast for Crows, Chapter 29, The Reaver.
  8. A Clash of Kings, Chapter 66, Theon VI.
  9. 9.0 9.1 A Feast for Crows, Chapter 1, The Prophet.
  10. 10.0 10.1 10.2 A Feast for Crows, Chapter 18, The Iron Captain.
  11. 11.0 11.1 11.2 A Feast for Crows, Chapter 19, The Drowned Man.
  12. 12.0 12.1 A Dance with Dragons, Chapter 26, The Wayward Bride.
  13. Fire & Blood, Three Heads Had the Dragon - Governance Under King Aegon I.