House Royce

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House Royce of Runestone
House Royce.svg
We Remember
Coat of arms Black iron studs on bronze, bordered with rune
(Bronze pelleté, a bordure of ancient runes)
Seat Runestone[1]
Head Lord Yohn Royce[2]
Region The Vale
Heir Ser Andar Royce[2]
Overlord House Arryn[5]
Cadet branch Royce of the Gates of the Moon
Ancestral weapon Lamentation[6] (lost)
Founded Dawn Age[4]

House Royce of Runestone is an old and powerful noble house of the Vale, sworn to House Arryn. Their seat is the castle Runestone, located on the coast of the narrow sea north of Gulltown. There is also cadet branch occupying the non-hereditary seat of the Gates of the Moon, located on the path that leads to the Eyrie.

The Royces of Runestone blazon their arms with black iron studs on bronze, bordered with runes, and their motto is "We Remember".[7][8] The Royces are proud of their descent from the First Men.[9] They have several sets of ancient bronze plate armor inscribed with runes that are thought to make their wearers immune to injury.[10] The truth of this claim has been called into question, however, as quite a few Royces have died wearing them.[4] The Royces control several ports and do not depend on Gulltown for its commerce.[11]


Bronze Kings

Calling themselves the Bronze Kings and wearing the Runic Crown, the Royce of Runestone were the most powerful First Men monarchs of the Vale in antiquity. Their rivals included House Shett of Gulltown, who carried the title King of the True Men and likewise claimed to date back ten thousand years to the Dawn Age.[4]

After King Yorwyck VI Royce defeated the Shetts in several battles, King Osgood III Shett allied himself with Ser Gerold Grafton, an Andal warlord from Andalos across the narrow sea. Although they defeated the Bronze King, the death of Osgood in battle led House Grafton to claim Gulltown for themselves. Yorwyck later repelled several other Andal attacks.[4]

High King

The last of the Bronze Kings was Yorwyck's young grandson, Robar II, who came to the throne when Andal invaders had conquered three-quarters of the Vale. Robar gained the allegiance of surviving First Men houses, including Belmores, Coldwaters, Hunters, Redforts, and Upcliffs, and he was proclaimed High King of the Vale, the Fingers, and the Mountains of the Moon.[4]

Robar led the First Men to several victories, but he was eventually defeated Ser Artys Arryn's Andals in the Battle of the Seven Stars. The surviving Royces bent the knee and swore fealty to House Arryn, the new Kings of Mountain and Vale.[4]

Targaryen Era

The Arryn kings submitted to House Targaryen during Aegon's Conquest.[12]

In 37 AC, at the start of the reign of King Aenys I Targaryen, Ronnel Arryn, the Lord of the Eyrie, was imprisoned by his younger brother Jonos, who declared himself King of Mountain and Vale. Lord Allard Royce led a host which swept away rebels[13] and penned Jonos, his captives, and his followers up in the Eyrie, which led to the murder of Ronnel when his brother sent him flying through the Moon Door.[4][14] Prince Maegor Targaryen ended the rebellion by flying to the Eyrie atop his dragon, Balerion. After Jonos's death, the Arryn line continued through a cousin, Hubert Arryn, who was married a lady of House Royce. The pair had six children. Aenys rewarded Allard for his service. The Royces later came out against the tyrannical King Maegor I and supported King Jaehaerys I Targaryen.[14]

An unnamed Lord Royce is present at the Golden Wedding in 49 AC,[15] this could be Lord Allard.

Yorbert Royce, the Lord Protector of the Vale, attended the Great Council of 101 AC at Harrenhal, since Lady Jeyne Arryn was a minor at that time.[9] Prince Daemon Targaryen wed Rhea Royce in 97 AC. It was an unhappy marriage, with Daemon referring to the Lady of Runestone as his "bronze bitch". King Viserys I Targaryen refused to set aside his brother's marriage, however. Daemon attempted to claim Runestone after Rhea's death, but the castle passed to her nephew and Lady Jeyne warned Daemon against remaining in the Vale.[16] Amidst the Dance of the Dragons, Ser Willam Royce was killed and his family's Valyrian steel sword, Lamentation, was lost during the Storming of the Dragonpit.[6]

After a succession dispute arose in the Vale after Lady Jeyne Arryn's death, the Royces supported Ser Arnold Arryn as her heir. The king's regent, Ser Corwyn Corbray ruled that her chosen heir, Ser Joffrey Arryn must be Lord of the Eyrie, and Ser Corwyn was killed by a crossbowman at Runestone while confronting Lord Gunthor, as Ser Arnold had sought sanctuary there. War began anew across the Vale, with the Royces, and their bannermen, the Coldwaters and Tolletts supporting Ser Arnold's claim.[17]

Lord Royce competed in a tourney at Maidenpool in 208 AC, but he was defeated by Ser Humfrey Hardyng.[18]

Perra Royce was the first wife of Walder Frey, Lord of the Crossing.[2] Tywin Lannister, Lord of Casterly Rock, offered his dwarf son, Tyrion, for marriage to one of Lord Yohn Royce's daughters, but was rejected.[19]

Kyle Royce was a member of Brandon Stark's party when he went to King's Landing to demand Prince Rhaegar Targaryen's head for kidnapping his sister, Lyanna Stark. King Aerys II Targaryen imprisoned the party, summoned their fathers, and murdered them all, with the exception of Ethan Glover.[20] Lord Jon Arryn was a leader during Robert's Rebellion which ensued.[21]

Baratheon Era

When Lord Yohn Royce went north with his son, Ser Waymar, who was joining the Night's Watch at the Wall, they stopped at Winterfell.[22] After a hunt, Yohn defeated both Lord Eddard Stark and Ser Rodrik Cassel in the training yard.[23]

Recent Events

A Game of Thrones

Ser Waymar Royce, an inexperienced ranger of the Night's Watch, is killed by the Others. His body turns into a wight and kills Will.[24]

Waymar's father, Yohn, the Lord of Runestone, and his two brothers, Ser Andar and Ser Robar, participate in the Hand's tourney in King's Landing.[22] They ride in the tourney despite Lady Lysa Arryn forbidding the knights of the Vale from competing.[25] Andar is unhorsed by Ser Jaime Lannister, while Robar is defeated by Ser Loras Tyrell.[22] Lady Catelyn Stark meets Lord Nestor Royce, Keeper of the Gates of the Moon, when she brings the captive Tyrion Lannister to the Vale of Arryn.[25]

Yohn goes hunting with King Robert I Baratheon in the kingswood. Robar is sent into the forest by the Hand of the King, Lord Eddard Stark, to tell the royal party that Eddard sent Lord Beric Dondarrion to apprehend Ser Gregor Clegane.[26] Robert is mortally wounded by a boar during the hunt.[27]

During the first court session of Joffrey I Baratheon, both Lord Royces and their sons are among the nobles commanded to do fealty to the new king or be labelled as traitors.[28]

A Clash of Kings

Robar becomes a member of Renly Baratheon's Rainbow Guard and is given a suit of blood-red armor.[29] He allows Catelyn Stark and Brienne of Tarth to escape after Renly's assassination at Storm's End.[30] Loras Tyrell kills Robar the Red in a rage after he learns of Renly's death.[31]

A Storm of Swords

Loras is remorseful for having slain Robar.[32]

Lord Yohn is close to open revolt, as Lady Lysa Arryn failed to support Robb Stark, King in the North, during the War of the Five Kings.[33] Lord Petyr Baelish throws Lysa through the Moon Door but blames the murder on Marillion.[34]

A Feast for Crows

Petyr, the Lord Protector of the Vale, grants the Gates of the Moon to Lord Nestor Royce in perpetuity, creating House Royce of the Gates of the Moon.[35] Lord Yohn is one of the Lords Declarant demanding the removal of Petyr. The Lords Declarant sign and issue their statement of demands from Runestone.[36]

After the Lords Declarant surround the Gates of the Moon, they are hosted by Petyr within the Eyrie. Although they want young Lord Robert Arryn to be Yohn's ward and squire at Runestone, Petyr manipulates them into granting him a year to set the Vale to rights.[23]

Lord Yohn holds a small melee at Runestone for squires which Harrold Hardyng wins, and Yohn knights Harry as his reward.[37] Ser Mychel Redfort is forced by his father, Lord Horton Redfort, to marry one of Yohn's daughters, Ysilla.[1]

A Dance with Dragons

Lord Davos Seaworth learns in White Harbor that Yohn has sworn to bring down Petyr Baelish.[38]

House Royce at the end of the third century

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

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

Family tree



Historical Members

Sworn Houses


His armor is bronze, thousands and thousands of years old, engraved with magic runes that ward him against harm.[22]


  1. Yohn is one of Lysa Arryn's suitors (A Storm of Swords, Tyrion III) despite already having children. This implies the mother of his children is dead.


  1. 1.00 1.01 1.02 1.03 1.04 1.05 1.06 1.07 1.08 1.09 1.10 1.11 A Feast for Crows, Appendix.
  2. 2.0 2.1 2.2 2.3 A Clash of Kings, Appendix.
  3. A Storm of Swords, Appendix.
  4. 4.0 4.1 4.2 4.3 4.4 4.5 4.6 4.7 The World of Ice & Fire, The Vale.
  5. 5.0 5.1 A Game of Thrones, Appendix.
  6. 6.0 6.1 The World of Ice & Fire, The Targaryen Kings: Aegon II.
  7. The Citadel. Heraldry: Houses in the Vale
  8. The Citadel. House Mottoes
  9. 9.0 9.1 The World of Ice & Fire, The Vale: House Arryn.
  10. A Game of Thrones, Chapter 28, Catelyn V.
  11. The Winds of Winter, Alayne I
  12. The World of Ice & Fire, The Reign of the Dragons: The Conquest.
  13. The World of Ice & Fire, The Targaryen Kings: Aenys I.
  14. 14.0 14.1 14.2 Fire & Blood, The Sons of the Dragon.
  15. 15.0 15.1 Fire & Blood, The Year of the Three Brides - 49 AC.
  16. 16.0 16.1 16.2 The Rogue Prince.
  17. 17.0 17.1 Fire & Blood, The Lysene Spring and the End of Regency.
  18. 18.0 18.1 The Hedge Knight.
  19. 19.0 19.1 A Storm of Swords, Chapter 19, Tyrion III.
  20. 20.0 20.1 A Clash of Kings, Chapter 55, Catelyn VII.
  21. The World of Ice & Fire, The Fall of the Dragons: Robert's Rebellion.
  22. 22.0 22.1 22.2 22.3 A Game of Thrones, Chapter 29, Sansa II.
  23. 23.0 23.1 A Feast for Crows, Chapter 23, Alayne I.
  24. A Game of Thrones, Prologue.
  25. 25.0 25.1 A Game of Thrones, Chapter 34, Catelyn VI.
  26. A Game of Thrones, Chapter 43, Eddard XI.
  27. A Game of Thrones, Chapter 47, Eddard XIII.
  28. A Game of Thrones, Chapter 57, Sansa V.
  29. A Clash of Kings, Chapter 31, Catelyn III.
  30. A Clash of Kings, Chapter 33, Catelyn IV.
  31. A Clash of Kings, Chapter 36, Tyrion VIII.
  32. A Storm of Swords, Chapter 6, Sansa I.
  33. A Storm of Swords, Chapter 68, Sansa VI.
  34. A Storm of Swords, Chapter 80, Sansa VII.
  35. A Feast for Crows, Chapter 10, Sansa I.
  36. A Feast for Crows, Chapter 17, Cersei IV.
  37. 37.0 37.1 37.2 37.3 A Feast for Crows, Chapter 41, Alayne II.
  38. A Dance with Dragons, Chapter 15, Davos II.
  39. 39.0 39.1 39.2 39.3 39.4 39.5 39.6 The World of Ice & Fire, The Vale.
  40. 40.0 40.1 The Sons of the Dragon.
  41. 41.0 41.1 Fire & Blood, Jaehaerys and Alysanne - Their Triumphs and Tragedies.
  42. Fire & Blood, Under the Regents - War and Peace and Cattle Shows.
  43. The World of Ice & Fire, Appendix: Stark Lineage.