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Reyne-Tarbeck revolt

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Reyne-Tarbeck revolt
Reyne Tarbeck Rebellion.png
art by RobinF

Date 261 AC[1]
Location Castamere and Tarbeck Hall in the westerlands
Result Elimination of Houses Reyne and Tarbeck
Restoration of Lannister dominance over the westerlands
Belligerents
House Reyne
House Tarbeck
House Lannister
House Banefort
House Marbrand[2]
House Plumm[2]
House Prester
House Stackspear
House Westerling
Notable commanders
Lord Roger Reyne
Ser Reynard Reyne
Lord Walderan Tarbeck
Lady Ellyn Tarbeck
Lord Tion Tarbeck
Ser Tywin Lannister
Strength
At Tarbeck Hall:
  • 500 Tarbeck household knights[N 1]
  • 2,000 soldiers from House Reyne (including ~200 knights)

At Castamere:[1]

  • More than 300 men, women and children
At Tarbeck Hall:[N 2]
  • 500 knights
  • 3,000 men-at-arms
  • 3,000 crossbowmen.

At Castamere:[N 3]

Losses
Complete elimination of the rebellious vassalsMinimal

The Reyne-Tarbeck revolt was an uprising in the westerlands in 261 AC. Houses Reyne and Tarbeck renounced fealty and rose against their Lannister overlords due to the perceived weakness of the Lord of Casterly Rock, Tytos Lannister. The revolt was crushed by Tytos's heir, Ser Tywin Lannister.[1]

Prelude

Lord Robert Reyne, the Lord of Castamere, was succesful in arranging a betrothal between his daughter Ellyn and Tywald Lannister, the heir of Lord Gerold Lannister of Casterly Rock. However, both Ellyn's betrothed and father were slain during the Peake Uprising in 233 AC. Ellyn, strong-willed and hot-tempered, was not willing to give up on her dream of becoming Lady of Casterly Rock, something which she had been anticipating for years. She convinced Lord Gerold's second son, Tion, to break his own betrothal and marry her instead. In this she was succesfull; Ellyn and Tion were wed in 235 AC, causing Ellyn to become the Lady of Casterly Rock in all but name, as Lord Gerold was widowed.[1]

Ellyn used her position to support the position of her own family. In 236 AC, she became a widow when Tion died in the Fourth Blackfyre Rebellion. Ellyn's influence dwindled as Lord Gerold assumed more control over Casterly Rock and began to prepare his younger son Tytos for his future lordship. According to a semi-canon source, Ellyn at first claimed to have been pregnant shortly after Tion's death, but as time passed and her belly remained flat it was concluded the pregnancy had been a lie.[2] Thereafter, most of the Reynes departed Casterly Rock for Castamere. In 239 AC, Ellyn made another claim to the position she so desired and attempted to bed Tytos, Lord Gerold's new heir. The young man was unable to perform and confessed what had happened to his wife, Lady Jeyne Marbrand, who related the tale to Lord Gerold. Gerold acted at once, and Ellyn was hastily married to the twice-widowed Walderan Tarbeck, Lord of Tarbeck Hall.[1] The rivalry between Ellyn and Jeyne, which had begun years past, would continue for many years to come.

Tytos became the Lord of Casterly Rock and Warden of the West in 244 AC at the death of Lord Gerold. Tytos desired to be loved, and as such was willing to forgive people quickly. Many saw this as a weakness, and as such, many of Tytos's bannermen and merchants from Lannisport and Kayce borrowed money from him without paying their debts. Through her brothers, Lady Ellyn borrowed gold from House Lannister as well, which she used to restore the crumbling Tarbeck Hall. The power of House Lannister grew less, and even beyond the westerlands people began to realize the Lannisters were no longer to be feared.[1]

Lord Tytos's eldest three sons left to fight in the War of the Ninepenny Kings in 260 AC. When Tywin, Tytos's heir, returned from the Stepstones with his brothers, Kevan and Tygett, he took upon himself to restore the power of House Lannister, despite Tytos's reluctance. Tywin demanded repayment of his father's loans and all who could not pay were ordered to send hostages to Casterly Rock. Kevan formed a new company of five hundred veterans to aid Tywin. Lord Roger Reyne, Ellyn's older brother, laughed when he read Tywin's edicts and advised his friends and vassals to do nothing. Lord Walderan Tarbeck hoped to convince Tytos to rescind Tywin's edicts and traveled to Casterly Rock, but was instead imprisoned by Tywin.[1] In return, his wife Ellyn seized three Lannisters – two Lannisters of Lannisport, and Stafford Lannister, whose sister Joanna was betrothed to Tywin – and threatened them harm unless her husband was returned. Tytos ignored Tywin's suggestion of sending Lord Walderan should back to his wife in three pieces, one for every Lannister taken, and instead returned Walderan unharmed. In addition, he forgave the Tarbeck debt to House Lannister.[3][1]

Revolt

Ser Tywin Lannister remained determined to defeat the disloyal vassals of House Lannister. In 261 AC, less then a year after the exchange of captives, Tywin sent ravens to Tarbeck Hall and Castamere demanding answers for their crimes at Casterly Rock. As he had expected, Lord Roger and Ser Reynard Reyne, as well Lord Walderan and Lady Ellyn Tarbeck, rose in rebellion, renouncing their fealthy to Casterly Rock.[1]

Without the permission of Lord Tytos Lannister, Tywin marched against the upstart vassals with three thousand men-at-arms and crossbowmen and five hundred knights.[1] According to a semi-canon source, the host was joined on the march by troops from House Marbrand and House Prester, as well as a dozen lesser lords,[2] although The World of Ice & Fire does not appear to count these soldiers.[N 4]

The fall of Tarbeck Hall

Because the Lannisters marched on Tarbeck Hall so suddenly, Lord Walderan Tarbeck had no time to rally his banners. As such, he met the Lannister host in battle with only his household knights. A short bloody battle ensued in which the Tarbecks were butchered.[1] According to a semi-canon source, Lord Walderan's heir, his only surviving son from his first marriage, died during battle, but Walderan himself was taken alive, as were two of his sons from his second marriage. Though Walderan expected to be ransomed,[2] they were all executed. The heads of Walderan and his sons were impaled on spears, and led the march onto Tarbeck Hall.[4]

At Tarbeck Hall, Lady Ellyn expected a long siege. She sent ravens to Castamere, asking her brothers Roger and Reynard for help. According to a semi-canon source, when Ser Kevan arrived under a peace banner demanding her surrender, she laughed at him, telling him: "You are not the only lions in the west, ser. My brothers are coming, and their claws are just as long and sharp as yours".[2] However, Ser Tywin had siege engines prepared in less than a day. These were used to throw a great boulder over the walls onto Tarbeck Hall's aged keep, bringing the castle down upon Ellyn and her son, Tion. All resistance ended and the gates were thrown open, and Tywin commanded the castle be put to the torch. For a day and night the flames burned until nothing was left of Tarbeck Hall except a blackened empty shell.[1] According to a semi-canon source,[2] Tywin forced Ellyn's daughters, Rohanne and Cyrelle, to join the silent sisters, while Rohanne's three-year-old son disappeared during the fighting. Reports suggest that the boy had been thrown down a well by Ser Amory Lorch.[2]

The Red Lion and the Gold

Lord Roger Reyne of Castamere arrived with two thousand hastily-gathered men following an exhausting march in time to witness Tarbeck Hall aflame. Most reports claim the Lannisters had three times as many men as the Reynes (a few unreliably claim five times as many). Roger hoped that surprise would give him the advantage and sounded the attack. The Lannister army was quick to recover from the first shock, and when the higher numbers of the Lannisters began to tell, Lord Roger saw no other option than to flee. As he fled back to Castamere, half his men had already died. Roger was wounded by a crossbow bolt between the shoulders as he fled and had to be carried back to Castamere.[1]

The fall of Castamere

With Lord Roger feverish and weak due to his injuries, his younger brother, Ser Reynard Reyne, assumed command of the remaining Reyne forces. The Reynes took refuge at Castamere, and Reynard led all his men down into the mines of the castle. Ser Tywin Lannister arrived at Castamere three days after the burning of Tarbeck Hall,[1] and according to a semi-canon source, his host had doubled in size with the arrival of forces from Lords Banefort, Plumm, Stackspear, and Westerling.[2] Reynard believed he held the advantage, as Tywin could not possibly fight his way inside the mines. When his people were all inside, Reynard sent terms for surrender to Tywin, stating that the Reynes would be loyal vassals in return for Tywin's brothers serving within Castamere as hostages.[1][2]

Tywin ignored Reynard's terms and instead ordered his men to seal the entrances of the mines. When all entrances were blocked with tons of stone, earth, and soil, leaving no way in or out, Tywin had his men dam a nearby stream and divert it to the nearest mine entrance. Water easily found its way though the tiny gaps in the rubble that blocked the mouth of the entrance. Lannister men stationed at the most distant entrances claimed they could hear faint screaming and shouting, but by daybreak, there was nothing but silence. None of the three hundred men, women, and children within ever emerged from the mines again. As commanded by Tywin, the castle on the surface was set ablaze.[1]

Aftermath

By the end of the campaign the rebellious Houses Reyne and Tarbeck were completely obliterated. The ruined, blackened, and crumbling castles of Castamere and Tarbeck Hall stand empty to this day as a reminder to those who dare scorn the power of the Rock.[5][6] Castamere's mines have remained sealed.[1]

Tywin's manner of dealing with the revolt had made him respected and feared throughout the Seven Kingdoms.[1] Though the brutality of Tywin's methods drew censure from some, everyone agreed that order had been restored to the westerlands.[7]

Tywin's actions to restore House Lannister's power are immortalized in the song "The Rains of Castamere", and he is known to have used the song as a threat against troublesome bannermen.[5]

Quotes

The lion has awoken.[1]

Harys Swyft regarding Tywin Lannister


Roose: The curse of Tywin Lannister. Our goat should have consulted the Tarbecks or the Reynes. They might have warned him how your lord father deals with betrayal.

Jaime: There are no Tarbecks or Reynes.

Roose: My point precisely.[8]

Roose Bolton and Jaime Lannister


Jaime: My father had a saying too. Never wound a foe when you can kill him. Dead men don't claim vengeance.

Hoster: Their sons do.

Jaime: Not if you kill the sons as well. Ask the Casterlys about that if you doubt me. Ask Lord and Lady Tarbeck, or the Reynes of Castamere. Ask the Prince of Dragonstone.[9]

Jaime Lannister and Hoster Blackwood

Notes

  1. According to the semi-canon, unabridged version of "The Westerlands" from The World of Ice & Fire, House Tarbeck had five hundred household knights
  2. Tywin Lannister "rode forth himself with five hundred knights and three thousand men-at-arms and crossbowmen behind him", and compared to the two thousand men of Roger Reyne, was said to have "three times his strength", according to most accounts (The World of Ice & Fire,The Westerlands: House Lannister Under the Dragons), thereby demonstrating that Tywin had three thousand men-at-arms and three thousand crossbowmen, bringing his total to sixty-five hundred men, roughly three times as many as Lord Roger's two thousand.
  3. According to the semi-canon, unabridged version of "The Westerlands" from The World of Ice & Fire, Tywin's host had doubled in size upon arrival at Castamere
  4. The World of Ice & Fire states that Tywin's host, identified as "five hundred knights and three thousand men-at-arms and crossbowmen", was three times as large, according to most counts, as Roger Reyne's two thousand men. That indicates that Tywin had three thousand men-at-arms and three thousand crossbowmen, giving him 6,500 compared to Roger's 2,000. As the addition of soldiers from Houses Prester and Marbrand are ommitted from the printed edition, it is possible these men are amongst Tywin's aforementioned host.

References

  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 1.12 1.13 1.14 1.15 1.16 1.17 1.18 The World of Ice & Fire, The Westerlands: House Lannister Under the Dragons.
  2. 2.0 2.1 2.2 2.3 2.4 2.5 2.6 2.7 2.8 2.9 Georgerrmartin.com: georgerrmartin.com Unabridged version of "The Westerlands" chapter from The World of Ice & Fire
  3. A Feast for Crows, Chapter 44, Jaime VII.
  4. The World of Ice & Fire, The Westerlands: House Lannister Under the Dragon.
  5. 5.0 5.1 A Storm of Swords, Chapter 19, Tyrion III.
  6. A Feast for Crows, Chapter 33, Jaime V.
  7. The World of Ice & Fire, The Targaryen Kings: Aerys II.
  8. A Storm of Swords, Chapter 37, Jaime V.
  9. A Dance with Dragons, Chapter 48, Jaime I.