Sack of Bitterbridge
|Sack of Bitterbridge|
|Conflict||Dance of the Dragons|
|Result||The greens taking Bitterbridge|
The sack of Bitterbridge occurred during the Dance of the Dragons.
The town of Bitterbridge became crowded from refugees fleeing the host of greens led by Lord Ormund Hightower. A disguised Ser Rickard Thorne of the Kingsguard and his charge, Prince Maelor Targaryen, tried to stay overnight in the Hogs Head, a Bitterbridge inn, while journeying to the safety of Ormund's host at the nearby siege of Longtable. Sly, a stableboy for the inn's proprietor, Ben Buttercakes, informed the inn's common room that he had discovered Maelor's dragon egg. After slaying Ben, Rickard rode for the southern shore of the Mander, but he was killed by crossbowmen at the bridge. Mushroom claims Willow Pound-Stone accidentally crushed Maelor to death, Eustace says he was chopped into six pieces by a butcher, and Munkun writes that Maelor was torn apart by a mob.
Lady Caswell, whose lord husband had earlier been executed by Maelor's father, King Aegon II Targaryen, was aghast at the violence. She hanged Willow, Sly, and the man whose horse had been stolen by Rickard. Then, she sent Rickard's corpse and Maelor's head to Queen Rhaenyra Targaryen in King's Landing, while Maelor's dragon egg to was sent to Lord Ormund Hightower at Longtable. Ormund was generous after Longtable was yielded, taking its wealth and grains but doing no harm to the Merryweathers.
Lady Caswell hoped Lord Ormund Hightower would be merciful when he arrived at Bitterbridge. Prince Daeron Targaryen refused, however, and used the dragonflame of Tessarion to burn the town. Daeron began with the Hogs Head, but the conflagration spread to the other inns, storehouses, and homes. Hundred of wounded died within Bitterbridge's sept, and townspeople were cut down by Ormund's soldiers or forced into the Mander to drown. The bridge across the river was spared, however.
Begging mercy for her children, Lady Caswell yielded her castle to Lord Hightower and then hanged herself from the gatehouse. Ormund then indeed spared her sons and daughter, sending them as prisoners to Oldtown, but ordered the entire castle's remaining garrison put to the sword.
Refugees from Bitterbridge fled to Tumbleton. Prince Daeron Targaryen later named Ulf the White as Lord of Bitterbridge after the First Battle of Tumbleton.
—Daeron Targaryen to Lady Caswell