Storming of the Dragonpit

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Storming of the Dragonpit
Storming of the Dragonpit.jpg
The storming of the Dragonpit, as depicted by Paulo Puggioni in The World of Ice & Fire
Conflict Dance of the Dragons
Date 130 AC
Place Dragonpit, King's Landing
Result Mob victory
Death of five dragons
Combatants
Smallfolk of King's Landing House Targaryen
Commanders
The Shepherd
Strength
The Shepherd's lambs:
Casualties
The Burning Knight
  • Hundreds or thousands of smallfolk
Prince Joffrey Velaryon

5 dragons:

Dragonkeepers
A dragon looses its flame on its attackers. In supplemental Blu-ray content from Game of Thrones Season 5.

The Storming of the Dragonpit took place during the civil war. During the riots tearing the city apart, a crazed mob of smallfolk, maddened by the Shepherd's rantings, forced their way into the Dragonpit at King's Landing and slew four dragons housed there and afterwards slew Syrax.[1]

Dragons housed within the dragonpit

The dragons housed within the Dragonpit at that time:

The Storming

Defeating the about 50 Dragonkeepers guarding it,[2] the mob was able to clamber through windows and break down the Dragonpit's lesser entrance doors made of oak and iron using crude rams and the blows of countless axes. By the time the attackers came pouring onto the sands all four dragons were roused, awake, and angry.[1]

Trapped within the pit, hemmed in by wall and dome and bound by their heavy chains the dragons were not able to fly away or use their wings to evade attacks and swoop down on their foes. Instead the four dragons fought with their horns and claws and teeth, turning this way and that like the bulls in a Flea Bottom rat pit. They let loose their dragonflame and transformed the Dragonpit into a fiery inferno. At the same time Syrax, who was being stabled in the Red Keep, was loosed by Prince Joffrey Velaryon.[1]

  • Shrykos was the first dragon to succumb, slain by Hobb the Hewer
  • Morghul was slain by the Burning Knight.
  • Tyraxes was also slain however half a dozen men and one woman claimed to have dealt the death blow
  • Only Dreamfyre was able to break free from her remaining bonds. She took wing and slew more men that the other three dragons combined. Eventually rendered half-blind and maddened she flew into the pit's great dome above which cracked on impact and half of it came tumbling down, crushing her.[1]

Aftermath: Syrax descends

The Storming of the Dragonpit was now over - but the unchained and riderless Syrax was in the skies above. She was drawn to Rhaenys's Hill. As the burned and bloody survivors of the carnage came stumbling from the smoking ruins Syrax descended upon them above. A thousand shrieks and shouts echoed across King's Landing mingling with the dragon's roar. Atop Rhaeny’s Hill the Dragonpit wore a crown of yellow fire. It burned so bright it seemed as if the sun was rising. Syrax attacked the mob and devoured dozens. Eventually the queen's dragon was slain. Many conflicting tales are told of her death but one thing is certain - she died that night.[1] Munkun credtis Hobb the Hewer and his axe, though Gyldayn dismisses the same man could've slain two dragons the same night and in the same manner. Some speak of an unnamed spearman, a "blood-soaked giant" who leapt from the Dragonpit's broken dome onto the dragon's back while others tell of a knight named Ser Warrick Wheaton who slashed a wing with a Valyrian steel sword - which Gyldayn speculates is most likely Lamentation. A crossbowman named Bean would claim the kill afterward, boasting of it until one of Rhaenyra's loyalists cut out his tongue.[3]

Gyldayn argues that possibly all the candidates, except for Hobb the Hewer, played some role in the dragon's death, but the tale most repeated in King's Landing is that the Shepherd himself was the dragonslayer. According to the tale, as others fled, the Shepherd stood alone against Syrax, calling upon the Seven for succor, until the Warrior himself took form, thirty feet tall, with a black blade made of smoke that turned to steel. Even Septon Eustace repeats the tale in his account, as well as singers for many years.[3]

No one knows how many smallfolk died that night, hundreds definitely, possibly thousands.[1]

Quotes

Drunks they may be, but a drunken man knows not fear. Fools, aye, but a fool can kill a king. Rats, that too, but a thousand rats can bring down a bear.[1]

- Mushroom

References

  1. 1.0 1.1 1.2 1.3 1.4 1.5 1.6 The Princess and the Queen.
  2. Fire & Blood, Jaehaerys and Alysanne - Their Triumphs and Tragedies.
  3. 3.0 3.1 Fire & Blood, The Dying of the Dragons - Rhaenyra Overthrown.