Master of whisperers

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Master of whisperers
Office Advisor
Region Seven Kingdoms
Current Holder Qyburn (de facto)
First Holder Tyanna of the Tower (possibly)
Creator King Maegor I Targaryen (possibly)
Created 42 AC (possibly)

The master of whisperers or mistress of whisperers is the spymaster for the Lord of the Seven Kingdoms, the monarch on the Iron Throne. He or she is charged with gathering intelligence from informants in the Red Keep, in King's Landing, around the Seven Kingdoms, across the narrow sea, and other places. Unlike the other positions of the small council, this title was not created by Aegon I Targaryen.


Spy in Their Midst by Katherine Dinger © Fantasy Flight Games

Tyanna of the Tower, the most feared of King Maegor I Targaryen's wives, served her husband as his mistress of whisperers.[1] It was said that speaking secrets in the Red Keep was foolish, as rats and other vermin were her spies. She tortured many enemies of the Crown, including fellow wife Alys Harroway and her many alleged lovers; all but two confessed to adultery.[2]

Larys Strong, Lord of Harrenhal, served as master of whisperers towards the end of the reign of King Viserys I Targaryen. He continued to serve in the office under King Aegon II Targaryen during the Dance of the Dragons. At the same time, Lady Mysaria, nicknamed Lady Misery, served as mistress of whisperers for Queen Rhaenyra Targaryen.[3][4]

Brynden Rivers, known as Lord Bloodraven, was a spymaster[5] with a network of spies while serving on Daeron II Targaryen's small council.[6] Brynden later served King Aerys I Targaryen as master of whisperers as well as Hand of the King.[7]

Lord Varys, nicknamed the Spider, was the master of whisperers for King Aerys II Targaryen, and after the Mad King's death, for King Robert I Baratheon.[8] He uses "little birds" as part of his network of informants.[9]

Recent Events

A Game of Thrones

Lord Varys serves as the master of whisperers for King Robert I Baratheon[8] and his successor, Joffrey I Baratheon.[10]

A Feast for Crows

Shadows and Spiders by Thomas Denmark © Fantasy Flight Games

Since Varys disappeared from King's Landing the night of Lord Tywin Lannister's murder, Queen Regent Cersei Lannister appoints Qyburn, a former maester, as the new master of whisperers for King Tommen I Baratheon.[11]

After Cersei is arrested by the Faith of the Seven and Ser Kevan Lannister assumes the regency, Qyburn is dismissed from the small council but continues to handle Varys' whisperers.[12]

A Dance with Dragons

Following Cersei's walk of atonement, Qyburn remains separate from the council but keeps reporting to Kevan.[13]

Known masters and mistresses of whisperers


Varys tells me that spies are more useful than corpses.[8]

The title was but a courtesy due him as a council member; Varys was lord of nothing but the spiderweb, the master of none but his whisperers.[14]

—thoughts of Catelyn Stark

Catelyn: How could you know all that?
Varys: The whisperings of little birds. I know things, sweet lady. That is the nature of my service.[14]

The King's Justice must be fearsome, the master of coin must be frugal, the Lord Commander of the Kingsguard must be valiant ... and the master of whisperers must be sly and obsequious and without scruple. A courageous informer would be as useless as a cowardly knight.[10]


  1. The World of Ice & Fire, The Targaryen Kings: Maegor I.
  2. Fire & Blood, The Sons of the Dragon.
  3. Fire & Blood, The Dying of the Dragons - Rhaenyra Triumphant.
  4. The World of Ice & Fire, The Targaryen Kings: Viserys I.
  5. World of Ice and Fire App Update - Spymaster (May 4, 2014)
  6. The Mystery Knight.
  7. The World of Ice & Fire, The Targaryen Kings: Aerys I.
  8. 8.0 8.1 8.2 A Game of Thrones, Chapter 12, Eddard II.
  9. A Dance with Dragons, Chapter 5, Tyrion II.
  10. 10.0 10.1 A Game of Thrones, Chapter 58, Eddard XV.
  11. A Feast for Crows, Chapter 17, Cersei IV.
  12. A Feast for Crows, Chapter 43, Cersei X.
  13. A Dance with Dragons, Epilogue.
  14. 14.0 14.1 A Game of Thrones, Chapter 18, Catelyn IV.