Difference between revisions of "Battle of the Blackwater"

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{{Template:Battlebox
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{{Battlebox collapsible
 
| image = [[File:T Jedruszek BattleoftheB ship.jpg|350px]]
 
| image = [[File:T Jedruszek BattleoftheB ship.jpg|350px]]
 
| caption = by Tomasz Jedruszek. © Fantasy Flight Games
 
| caption = by Tomasz Jedruszek. © Fantasy Flight Games
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| conflict = [[War of the Five Kings]]
 
| conflict = [[War of the Five Kings]]
 
| date = {{Date|299}}
 
| date = {{Date|299}}
| place = [[King's Landing]] / mouth of the [[Blackwater Rush]]
+
| place = mouth of the [[Blackwater Rush]] and [[King's Landing]]
| result = Decisive [[House Baratheon of King's Landing]] victory
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| result = Decisive victory for [[House Baratheon of King's Landing]]
 
| colour_scheme =
 
| colour_scheme =
| combatant1 = The King in the Narrow Sea<br>  
+
| combatant2 = [[File:House Baratheon (Dragonstone).svg|33px]] '''[[House Baratheon of Dragonstone]]:'''<br>
* Houses sworn to [[Dragonstone]]<br>
+
 
* Few houses sworn to the Iron Throne ([[House Chyttering|Chyttering]])
+
[[Crownlands]]
* Most [[stormlands|stormlords]]<br>  
+
*[[House Bar Emmon]]{{ref|asos|75}}
* Some houses of the [[Reach]] ([[Florent]], [[Fossoway]], [[Willum]], [[Varner]])<br>
+
*[[House Celtigar]]{{ref|acok|65}}
* [[Lys]]ene pirates
+
*[[House Chyttering]]{{ref|asos|10}}
* [[Myr]]ish sellsails
+
*[[House Farring]]{{ref|affc|Appendix}}{{ref|adwd|3}}
| combatant2 = The King on the Iron Throne<br>  
+
*[[House Follard]]{{ref|adwd|44}}
* [[City Watch of King's Landing]]<br>  
+
*[[House Massey]]{{ref|adwd|7}}
* Most houses sworn to the Iron Throne ([[House Rosby|Rosby]], [[Stokeworth]], [[Rykker]])
+
*[[House Velaryon]]{{ref|asos|25}}
* [[Tywin Lannister]]'s host (late battle)<br>
+
 
* Most houses of the [[Reach]] (late battle)<br>
+
[[Stormlands]]
* Some [[Stormlands|stormlords]] (switched sides)  
+
*[[House Bolling]]{{ref|affc|44}}
| commander1 = King [[Stannis Baratheon]] <br> Ser [[Imry Florent]]† <br> Ser [[Guyard Morrigen]]† <br> Ser [[Rolland Storm]]<br>Lord [[Salladhor Saan]]<br> Ser [[Davos Seaworth]]
+
*[[House Buckler]]{{ref|adwd|44}}
| commander2 =  
+
*[[House Caron]]{{ref|acok|65}}
 +
*[[House Connington]]{{ref|acok|65}}
 +
*[[House Errol]]{{ref|acok|42}}
 +
*[[House Estermont]]{{ref|acok|52}}{{ref|acok|57}}
 +
*[[House Fell]]{{ref|affc|Appendix}}{{ref|adwd|17}}
 +
*[[House Gower]]{{ref|asos|54}}
 +
*[[House Grandison]]{{ref|adwd|44}}
 +
*[[House Hasty]]{{ref|acok|65}}{{ref|asos|Appendix}}{{ref|affc|27}}
 +
*[[House Horpe]]<ref name=TWOW>''[[The Winds of Winter]]'', [[Theon I (The Winds of Winter)|Theon I]]</ref>
 +
*[[House Mertyns]]
 +
*[[House Morrigen]]{{ref|acok|52}}{{ref|acok|62}}
 +
*[[House Peasebury]]{{ref|adwd|42}}
 +
*[[House Penrose]]
 +
*[[House Seaworth]]{{ref|acok|58}}{{ref|asos|5}}
 +
*[[House Selmy]]
 +
*[[House Staedmon]]{{ref|acok|65}}
 +
*[[House Wensington]]{{ref|asos|75}}
 +
*[[House Wylde]]{{ref|adwd|61}}
 +
 
 +
[[Reach|The Reach]]
 +
*[[House Florent]]
 +
*[[House Fossoway of Cider Hall]]
 +
*[[House Fossoway of New Barrel]]
 +
*[[House Meadows]]
 +
*[[House Mullendore]]
 +
*[[House Varner]]
 +
*[[House Willum]]
 +
[[Salladhor Saan]]'s pirate fleet ([[Lys]]ene)<br>
 +
[[Myr]]ish sellsails
 +
| combatant1 = [[File:House Baratheon (King's Landing).svg|33px]] '''[[Iron Throne]]'''/ [[House Baratheon of King's Landing]]:<br>
 +
 
 +
'''King's Landing garrison:'''
 +
[[City Watch of King's Landing|Gold cloaks]]<br>
 +
 
 +
[[Crownlands]]
 +
*[[House Brune of Brownhollow]]{{ref|ACOK|65}}
 +
*[[House Brune of the Dyre Den]]{{refn|group=N|name=CrownlandHouses|The Crownland Houses of Brune of the Dyre Den, Byrch, Hayford, Hogg, Rosby and Rykker are not directly mentioned at Blackwater, but as they are sworn directly to the Iron Throne, it is likely they took part in the battle or provided men to the City Watch.}}
 +
*[[House Byrch]]{{refn|group=N|name=CrownlandHouses}}
 +
*[[House Bywater]]{{ref|ASOS|19}}
 +
*[[House Harte]]{{ref|ASOS|67}}
 +
*[[House Hayford]]{{refn|group=N|name=CrownlandHouses}}
 +
*[[House Hogg]]{{refn|group=N|name=CrownlandHouses}}
 +
*[[House Kettleblack]]{{ref|ACOK|59}}
 +
*[[House Rosby]]{{refn|group=N|name=CrownlandHouses}}
 +
*[[House Rykker]]{{refn|group=N|name=CrownlandHouses}}
 +
*[[House Stokeworth]]{{ref|ACOK|57}}
 +
 
 +
[[Vale mountain clans]]
 +
*[[Black Ears]]{{ref|ACOK|49}}
 +
*[[Burned Men]]{{ref|ACOK|49}}
 +
*[[Moon Brothers]]{{ref|ACOK|49}}
 +
*[[Stone Crows]]{{ref|ACOK|49}}
 +
 
 +
'''Relief force (late battle):'''
 +
[[File:House Lannister.svg|30px]] [[Westerlands]], led by [[House Lannister]]
 +
*[[House Banefort]]
 +
*[[House Bettley]]
 +
*[[House Brax]]{{ref|ACOK|65}}
 +
*[[House Crakehall]]{{ref|ACOK|65}}
 +
*[[House Falwell]]
 +
*[[House Ferren]]
 +
*[[House Foote]]{{ref|ACOK|65}}
 +
*[[House Kenning of Kayce]]
 +
*[[House Lannister of Lannisport]]
 +
*[[House Lefford]]
 +
*[[House Lydden]]{{ref|ACOK|65}}
 +
*[[House Marbrand]]{{ref|ACOK|62}}{{ref|ACOK|65}}
 +
*[[House Myatt]]
 +
*[[House Payne]]{{ref|ACOK|61}}
 +
*[[House Peckledon]]{{ref|ACOK|65}}
 +
*[[House Plumm]]
 +
*[[House Prester]]
 +
*[[House Sarsfield]]
 +
*[[House Serrett]]
 +
*[[House Stackspear]]
 +
*[[House Swyft]]
 +
*[[House Turnberry]]
 +
*[[House Yarwyck]]
 +
 
 +
[[File:House Tyrell.svg|30px]] [[Reach|The Reach]], led by [[House Tyrell]]
 +
*[[House Ambrose]]
 +
*[[House Beesbury]]
 +
*[[House Blackbar]]
 +
*[[House Bulwer]]
 +
*[[House Bushy]]
 +
*[[House Caswell]]
 +
*[[House Costayne]]
 +
*[[House Cuy]]
 +
*[[House Dunn]]
 +
*[[House Footly]]
 +
*[[House Graceford]]
 +
*[[House Hightower]]
 +
*[[House Hunt]]
 +
*[[House Inchfield]]
 +
*[[House Leygood]]
 +
*[[House Merryweather]]
 +
*[[House Norcross]]
 +
*[[House Oakheart]]
 +
*[[House Peake]]
 +
*[[House Redwyne]]
 +
*[[House Rowan]]
 +
*[[House Shermer]]
 +
*[[House Tarly]]
 +
*[[House Webber]]
 +
*[[House Wythers]]
 +
| commander2 = '''Force on land:'''
 +
*[[File:House Baratheon (Dragonstone).svg|20px]] King [[Stannis Baratheon]]
 +
*[[File:House Morrigen.svg|20px]] Ser [[Guyard Morrigen]]†
 +
*[[File:The Bastard of Nightsong.png|20px]] Ser [[Rolland Storm]]
 +
'''Fleet:'''
 +
*[[File:House Florent.svg|20px]] Ser [[Imry Florent]]†
 +
*[[Salladhor Saan]]
 +
| commander1 =  
 
'''King's Landing garrison:'''  
 
'''King's Landing garrison:'''  
*Lord [[Tyrion Lannister]]
+
*[[File:House Lannister (Tyrion).svg|20px]] Lord [[Tyrion Lannister]] (WIA)
*Lord [[Jacelyn Bywater]]
+
*[[File:City Watch.svg|20px]] Lord [[Jacelyn Bywater]]
*[[Sandor Clegane]]
+
*[[File:Kingsguard.svg|20px]] [[Sandor Clegane]]
 
'''Relief force:'''
 
'''Relief force:'''
*Lord [[Mace Tyrell]]
+
*[[File:House Tyrell.svg|20px]] Lord [[Mace Tyrell]]
*Ser [[Garlan Tyrell]]
+
*[[File:House Tyrell (Garlan).svg|20px]] Ser [[Garlan Tyrell]]
*Lord [[Randyll Tarly]]
+
*[[File:House Tarly.svg|20px]] Lord [[Randyll Tarly]]
*Lord [[Tywin Lannister]]
+
*[[File:House Lannister.svg|20px]] Lord [[Tywin Lannister]]
| strength1 = 21,000
+
| strength2 = '''Force on land:'''
* 16,000 cavalry from the [[Reach]] and [[stormlands]]
+
* ~16,400 cavalry mainly from the [[Reach]], and some from the [[Stormlands]] and [[Crownlands]]{{refn|group=N|Stannis originally had an army of five thousand men, but he claims to have twenty thousand men after Renly's death has caused a large part of his men to join Stannis. According to Davos, Stannis has “nearly twenty thousand” cavalry alone.{{ref|ACOK|58}} If true, this would mean Stannis had close to 25,000 soldiers in total, though Stannis claims to only have about 20,000 men immediately after Renly's death;{{ref|ACOK|42}} this would indicate that either Davos mistaken/rounding up, Stannis was rounding down, or that more men joined Stannis soon after he said he had 20,000. However, Tyrion states that four fifths of the cavalry present joined Stannis, which from a force of 20,000 would equate to 16,000 men, giving Stannis ~21,000 total when his original 5,000 are added, which lends credence to Stannis's figure ~20,000 being closer to the truth than Davos's ~25,000. Additionally, Stannis's force on land is referred to by Davos as being entirely mounted and making better pace than an infantry force as a result;{{ref|ACOK|58}} since Stannis's original host numbered 4,600 infantry and 400 cavalry{{ref|ACOK|22}} before being joined by ~16,000 of Renly's cavalry, this would mean his force on land totaled 16,400 soldiers, with his original infantry (mainly consisting of "companies of spearmen and archers",{{ref|ACOK|22}} as opposed to the knights and man-at-arms that make up the bulk of his main host) being confined to his ships.}}
* 5,000 men of Stannis's original host, from the [[crownlands]] and [[Myr]]
+
'''Fleet:'''
200 ships ''[http://awoiaf.westeros.org/index.php/Talk:Battle_of_the_Blackwater Breakdown of Fleet]''
+
* ~4,600 embarked infantry of Stannis's original host, from the [[crownlands]], [[Lys]], and [[Myr]]{{Ref|ACOK|31}}
* ~50 royal war galleys
+
~200 ships:{{refn|group=N|Stannis' fleet consists of ten battlelines of twenty ships,{{ref|ACOK|58}} bringing the total amount of ship to two hundred.}}
* ~10 war galleys from the lords of the Narrow Sea
+
* 60 war galleys of the [[royal fleet]] and Crownlords{{refn|group=N|The first three lines of twenty are made up of Westerosi war galleys. Out of these sixty ships, at least nine are known to belong to the lords of the Narrow Sea (''[[Pride of Driftmark]]'', ''[[Bold Laughter]]'', ''[[Harridan]]'', and ''[[Seahorse]]'' from [[House Velaryon]]; ''[[Red Claw]]'' from [[House Celtigar]]; ''[[Swordfish]]'' from [[House Bar Emmon]]; ''[[Piety]]'', ''[[Prayer]]'', and ''[[Devotion]]'', commandeered from [[House Sunglass]]).}}
* 30 Lysene pirate galleys
+
* ~40 smaller Myrish sellsail war galleys{{ref|ACOK|17}}{{refn|group=N|name=Myrish|Described as a smaller contingent "the smaller, slower Myrish contingent".{{ref|ACOK|58}} As the fleet is stated in the same chapter to be divided into ten lines of twenty, this means the Myrmen have at most forty ships, but possibly as few as twenty.}}
* ~40 Myrish sellsails
+
* ~80 commandeered transport vessels taken from traders (carracks and lumbering great cogs){{Ref|ACOK|58}}{{ref|ACOK|1}}
* ~70 commandeered sailing ships, including trade carracks and cogs.
+
* 25 Lysene pirate galleys{{refn|group=N|The Lyseni Salladhor Saan commands his ''[[Valyrian (ship)|Valyrian]]'' and two dozen smaller galleys.{{ref|ACOK|0}}}}
| strength2 = '''King's Landing garrison:''' ~7,000-8,000<ref>''[[A Clash of Kings-Chapter 49]]'': "Six thousand men in the City Watch, thanks to Cersei, but only a quarter of them could be relied upon [...] To be sure, there were seasoned men in the City Watch, the core of two thousand who'd gotten their gold cloaks from Robert, not Cersei. Yet even those . . . a watchman was not truly a soldier, Lord Tywin Lannister had been fond of saying. Of knights and squires and men-at-arms, Tyrion had no more than three hundred. [...] He still had Bronn's hirelings, near eight hundred of them now, but sellswords were notoriously fickle. Tyrion had done what he could to buy their continued loyalty, promising Bronn and a dozen of his best men lands and knighthoods when the battle was won." [300 gold cloaks were later sent to escort Petyr Baelish; Tyrion continued to recruit sellswords].</ref>
+
| strength1 = '''King's Landing garrison:''' 7,000-8,000
* 2,000 "seasoned"/"reliable" city watchmen
+
* 5,700 [[City Watch of King's Landing|gold cloaks]]{{refn|group=N|name=goldcloaks|The city watch contains six thousand men, although only two thousand of these, who had received their gold cloak from Robert, are seasoned men.{{Ref|ACOK|49}} Three hundred gold cloaks later escort Petyr Baelish to Bitterbridge,{{Ref|ACOK|36}} leaving only five thousand seven hundred.}}
* 3,700 newly recruited city watchmen (considered unreliable)
+
* ~800 sellswords{{Ref|acok|49}}
* 800+ sellswords  
+
*[[Stokeworth]] and [[Rosby]] contingents{{Ref|ACOK|49}}{{Ref|ACOK|57}}
*[[Stokeworth]] and [[Rosby]] contingents<ref>''[[A Clash of Kings-Chapter 49]]'': "Hallyne fled so quickly that he almost bowled over Ser Jacelyn—no, Lord Jacelyn, he must remember that. Ironhand was mercifully direct, as ever. He'd returned from Rosby to deliver a fresh levy of spearmen recruited from Lord Gyles's estates and resume his command of the City Watch".</ref><ref>[[A Clash of Kings-Chapter 57]]:"At the foot of the drawbridge, she came upon Lady Tanda and her two daughters. Falyse had arrived yesterday from Castle Stokeworth with a small troop of soldiers".</ref>
+
* 300 knights, squires and men-at-arms{{Ref|ACOK|49}}
* 300 knights, squires and men-at-arms
 
 
* 150 mountain clansmen (harassed Stannis's army during the march)
 
* 150 mountain clansmen (harassed Stannis's army during the march)
'''Lannister navy:''' 45+ ships
+
* "Hundreds" of scorpions, catapaults, and ballistae manned by hundreds of engineers{{ref|ACOK|17}}
* 45 war galleys of the [[royal fleet]]
+
'''Lannister navy:''' 57+ ships
* A "swarm" of ferries and wherries, barges, skiffs, rowboats, and hulks too rotten to float
+
* 45 war galleys of the [[royal fleet]]{{refn|group=N|Stannis has ten lines of twenty ships, bringing his total to ~200; Stannis has four times more ships than Joffrey, giving Joffrey ~50 ships of the royal fleet. (The Baratheon forces would have no information regarding the trading vessels seized on Tyrion's command.) However, unbeknownst to Stannis and his men, five of these ships (''[[King Robert's Hammer]]'', ''[[Seaswift]]'', ''[[Lionstar]]'', ''[[Bold Wind]]'', and ''[[Lady Lyanna]]'') have departed King’s Landing long before to escort Myrcella to Braavos.{{Ref|ACOK|41}} When the Battle of the Blackwater takes place, they have not yet returned.{{Ref|ACOK|58}}}}
'''Relief force:''' 65,000 
+
* At least 12 vessels taken from traders{{Ref|ACOK|49}}
* ~50,000 Tyrell men south of the Blackwater<ref>''[[A Storm of Swords-Chapter 38]]'': Tyrion claims there are "fifty, sixty, seventy thousand roses" outside of King's Landing in the immediate aftermath of the battle, which averages out to sixty thousand. This is after they are joined by well over ten thousand defectors from Stannis's host, and after they take relatively casualties in the fighting throughout the night.</ref>
+
* A "swarm" of hulks, barges, skiffs, ferries, wherries, and rowboats laden with [[wildfire]]{{Ref|AFFC|58}}
* 10,000-20,000 Lannister men north of the Blackwater<ref>Tywin's host started out as 20,000 men in ''[[A Game of Thrones]]''. By the time of the Blackwater, it has suffered from desertion and insurgency in the riverlands, as well as at least two major battles and many minor sieges and skirmishes. At least one of these battles, the [[Battle of the Fords]], was known to be quite costly for the Lannisters.</ref>
+
'''Relief force:'''  
| casualties1 = [[#Notable Casualties|See below]]  
+
* ~50,000-70,000 Tyrell men{{refn|group=N|The host of [[Renly Baratheon]] is said to number a hundred thousand.{{ref|ACOK|17}} Renly himself claims to have eighty thousand with him at Bitterbridge, while another ten thousand are with Lord [[Mace Tyrell]] at Highgarden.{{Ref|ACOK|22}} The forces of House Tyrell make up the majority of Renly's forces. Catelyn Stark says that Renly's cavalry includes at least ten thousand heavy lancers,{{Ref|ACOK|33}} and that it accompanies him to Storm's End to lift the siege, while his foot, according to Stannis near sixty thousand strong,{{Ref|ACOK|42}} remains at Bitterbridge when Renly goes to lift the siege of Storm’s End. As Renly previously stated that the total of his men at Bitterbridge numbered eighty thousand, this would make his cavalry at Storm's End 20,000 strong. As only one fifth of Renly's knights did not join Stannis,{{Ref|ACOK|36}} Stannis would have gained ~16,000 troops, bringing his total force to ~21,000.<br>
 +
Of those who remain, some — chiefly those of [[House Florent]] — are put to death by Lord [[Randyll Tarly]] after Renly's death.{{Ref|ACOK|42}}{{Ref|ACOK|44}} As House Florent can field two thousand men at best,{{Ref|ACOK|0}} this would reduce Renly's foot to fifty-eight thousand at a minimum. A fifth of the knights that had accompanied Renly to Storm's End return to join the other forces from the Reach,{{Ref|ACOK|36}} but how many of his ten (of fifteen) thousand cavalry had been knights is unknown. Mace Tyrell's additional ten thousand at Highgarden would bring the total to ~70,000 soldiers from House Tyrell.
 +
<br>[[Petyr Baelish]] tells [[Joffrey Baratheon]]'s [[small council]] that Mace Tyrell can field fifty thousand swords.{{Ref|ACOK|36}} According to Tyrion Lannister, some fifty to seventy thousand [[House Tyrell|Tyrell soldiers]] are in the King's Landing vicinity after the Battle of the Blackwater.{{Ref|asos|38}}}}
 +
* ~20,000 Lannister men{{refn|group=N|Tywin's host originally is 20,000 men strong.{{Ref|agot|56}} Despite desertions and insurgency in the riverlands, and many minor sieges and skirmishes, he still has about the same number before the [[Battle of the Fords]].{{Ref|asos|45}} Despite casualties during the battle, Tywin is later said to have twenty thousand swords in King's Landing,{{Ref|asos|38}} suggesting he either gained men or did not lose a significant amount.}}
 +
| casualties2 = [[#Notable Casualties|See below]]  
 
* 130-140 ships burned or wrecked.
 
* 130-140 ships burned or wrecked.
 
* 30-40 war galleys scuttled upriver or harassing the Lannister-Tyrell supply lines, with no ability to link back to Stannis's remaining fleet  
 
* 30-40 war galleys scuttled upriver or harassing the Lannister-Tyrell supply lines, with no ability to link back to Stannis's remaining fleet  
* 47 Lesser lordlings killed
+
* 47 Lesser lordlings killed{{Ref|ASOS|19}}
* 619 knights killed
+
* 619 knights killed{{Ref|ASOS|19}}
* Several thousand men-at-arms killed
+
* Several thousand men-at-arms killed{{Ref|ASOS|19}}
* Half the the army south of the Blackwater (~8,000) switch sides during the battle{{Ref|aSoS|19}}
+
* Several thousand men-at-arms left behind for lack of space on Saan's fleet{{ref|adwd|66}}
* Several thousand men-at-arms left behind for lack of space on Saan's fleet, and surrender.
+
* Most of the ~15,000 stormlanders and men of the Reach who had previously supported Renly abandoned Stannis{{Ref|ASOS|4}} by the hundreds{{Ref|ASOS|10}}
| casualties2 = [[#Notable Casualties|See below]]  
+
| casualties1 = [[#Notable Casualties|See below]]  
 
'''King's Landing garrison:''' Heavy
 
'''King's Landing garrison:''' Heavy
* 1,600 gold cloaks killed or deserted<ref>''[[A Storm of Swords-Chapter 4]]'': "Death and desertion have left me with some forty-four hundred. Only the gods and Littlefinger know how we are to go on paying wages for so many, but your sister forbids me to dismiss any".</ref>
+
* 1,600 gold cloaks killed or deserted{{refn|group=N|Following the deaths from and the desertions during the battle, the city watch only contains some forty-four hundred men,{{Ref|ASOS|4}} where it had numbered six thousand before.{{Ref|acok|49}}}}
* Most of the sellswords and knights/men-at-arms killed<ref>''[[A Clash of Kings-Chapter 59]]'': Sandor Clegane states that his sally, consisting of knights and sellswords, suffered more than 50% casualties: "I've lost half my men. Horse as well. I'm not taking more into that fire." The other sally at the same time presumably suffered similar casualties. In ''[[A Clash of Kings-Chapter 61]]'', Tyrion leads another sally that is nearly completely wiped out.</ref>
+
* Majority of the sellswords and knights/men-at-arms killed{{refn|group=N|Sandor Clegane loses half his knights and sellswords.{{Ref|acok|59}} Tyrion Lannister leads another sally, which is nearly wiped out.{{Ref|acok|61}}}}
* Unknown losses to the Rosby and Stokeworth contingents
+
'''King's Landing navy:''' Heavy
'''Lannister navy:''' Heavy
 
 
* 39+ royal war galleys{{Ref|AFFC|17}} destroyed, associated crews and marines all killed
 
* 39+ royal war galleys{{Ref|AFFC|17}} destroyed, associated crews and marines all killed
 
* All hulks, barges, skiffs, ferries, wherries, and rowboats destroyed
 
* All hulks, barges, skiffs, ferries, wherries, and rowboats destroyed
'''Relief force:''' Moderate
+
'''Relief force:''' Minimal
 
}}
 
}}
  
The '''Battle of the Blackwater''' is the largest battle in the [[War of the Five Kings]]. The battle is fought between forces loyal to [[Stannis Baratheon]] and those loyal to [[Joffrey Baratheon]]. Stannis's army is on the verge of winning a decisive victory by defeating the rather large garrison of [[King's Landing]], but is taken by surprise and all but annihilated by the joint forces of [[Tywin Lannister]] and the [[House Tyrell|Tyrells]].
+
The '''Battle of the Blackwater'''{{ref|ASOS|16}} is the largest battle in the [[War of the Five Kings]]. The battle is fought between the forces loyal to [[Joffrey Baratheon|Joffrey I Baratheon]], the King on the [[Iron Throne]], and those loyal to [[Stannis Baratheon|Stannis I Baratheon]], the King in the [[Narrow Sea]]. After [[Siege of Storm's End (299)#Regicide|eliminating]] his younger brother [[Renly Baratheon|Renly]], a rival claimaint to the Iron Throne, Stannis gains the loyalty of nearly all of the [[Stormlands|Stormlords]] and [[Reach|Reach lords]] and advances on [[King's Landing]] by land and sea, intent on seizing the city and taking control of the Iron Throne.
  
 
==Prelude==
 
==Prelude==
===Dragonstone===
+
Convinced that Joffrey Baratheon is not King [[Robert I Baratheon]]'s son, Stannis believes his claim to the [[Iron Throne]] is the true one. However, he lacks the strength to attack King's Landing, as few [[House Baratheon of Dragonstone#Sworn to Dragonstone|Houses are sworn to Dragonstone]] and the rocky, volcanic islands surrounding Dragonstone have a sparse population, and the men of the [[stormlands]] have given their support to his younger brother [[Renly Baratheon|Renly]], the [[Lord of Storm's End]], who has proclaimed himself king as well. Additionally, Renly has taken [[Margaery Tyrell]] to wife, which has earned him the support of the men from the [[Reach]] as well.{{Ref|ACOK|Prologue}} On Dragonstone, the red priestess [[Melisandre]] tells Stannis of two futures she has seen in her flames; One in which Stannis is defeated in King's Landing by his brother Renly, and one in which he sails to Storm's End, where his brother shall die, and his men will flock to Stannis.{{Ref|ACOK|42}}
Stannis is one of the members of King [[Robert I Baratheon]]'s [[small council]] to harbor suspicions of the parentage of the king's children, and to discover that they were born of incest between Queen [[Cersei Lannister]] and her brother, Ser [[Jaime Lannister]].
 
 
 
Taking his suspicions and what proof he could muster, in the form of Robert's numerous bastard children, to Lord [[Jon Arryn]], Stannis hopes to convince the [[Hand of the King]], one of Robert's oldest and most trusted friends, of the [[House Lannister|Lannisters']] treason. When Jon dies under suspicious circumstances shortly thereafter and Robert decides to offer the position of Hand to Lord [[Eddard Stark]],{{ref|AGOT|20}} Stannis flees to [[Dragonstone]], his seat of power, where Stannis closes the port and its surrounding waters. As the [[master of ships]],{{ref|AGOT|Appendix}} he is joined by most of the [[royal fleet]], although some ships remain at King's Landing.{{ref|ACOK|41}}
 
 
 
After Robert dies, Stannis rallies what strength he could, with but few [[House Baratheon of Dragonstone#Sworn to Dragonstone|Houses sworn to Dragonstone]], and hiring mercenaries and pirates of the [[Free Cities]] to augment his forces. As the lord of an island fiefdom, and the [[master of ships]], Stannis's naval power is considerable, but the sparse population of the rocky, volcanic islands surrounding Dragonstone leave him without the strength to risk openly contesting the Lannisters.{{Ref|aCoK|Prologue}}{{Ref|aCoK|10}}
 
 
 
Having failed to rally the storm lords to his cause in secret, Stannis presents his claims through letters distributed throughout the [[Seven Kingdoms]], proclaiming [[Joffrey Baratheon]] and his siblings the fruit of incest, and claiming the crown as Robert's eldest surviving brother and rightful heir. With neither proof, nor the support or love of nobles and commons alike, and a rumor spread by the Lannisters that Stannis's own daughter, [[Shireen Baratheon]], is a bastard, Stannis's proclamation ends as little more than tavern gossip.{{Ref|aCoK|10}}
 
 
 
===Battling Renly===
 
Even before Stannis's [[raven]]s have taken wing with his claim, his younger brother [[Renly Baratheon]] has ridden from King's Landing to [[Highgarden]], where he weds [[Margaery Tyrell]], the daughter of Lord [[Mace Tyrell]], and claims the crown for himself. For Stannis, this is blatant treason. Moreover, Stannis is infuriated with the knowledge that the the [[stormlands]] have thrown in with Renly, despite the fact that Stannis, as the eldest son of [[House Baratheon]], should have held claim to the loyalty of his House's ancestral seat, [[Storm's End]]. On Dragonstone [[Melisandre]] tells Stannis of two futures she has seen in her flames, one in which Stannis is defeated in King's Landing by his brother Renly, and one in which he sails to Storm's End, where his brother shall die, and his men will flock to Stannis. This leads Stannis to strike for Storm's End.{{Ref|aCoK|42}}
 
 
 
Stannis [[Siege of Storm's End (299)|lays siege]] to the coastal fortress, which is under the command of Ser [[Cortnay Penrose]], but all his might is but a meager thing against all the strength of the stormlands and the [[Reach]] at his brother Renly's command. When Renly abandons his march on King's Landing, bringing all his knights and mounted forces to lift the siege, Stannis is vastly outnumbered. However, before the battle can begin, Renly is slain by [[shadow assassin|a shadow]] called forth by the shadowbinder Melisandre.{{Ref|aCoK|33}}
 
  
With Renly dead, the greater part of the knights and lords who had been sworn to him submit to Stannis, the last Baratheon, chief among them [[House Florent]], relatives of Stannis's wife, [[Selyse Florent]]. About a fifth of the cavalry does not submit, and flee under the command of Ser [[Loras Tyrell]] back to [[Bitterbridge]], where almost 60,000 men of Renly's army wait with his widowed Tyrell queen.{{Ref|aCoK|36}}{{Ref|aCoK|44}} Loras captures the knights Stannis sent to try and recruit the Reach and stormlands infantry still encamped at Bitterbridge.
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[[Stannis Baratheon|Stannis]] arrives in the [[stormlands]] with his five thousand men and [[Siege of Storm's End (299)|lays siege]] to the coastal fortress [[Storm's End]], the seat of his younger brother, [[Renly Baratheon|Renly]].{{ref|ACOK|22}}{{Ref|ACOK|25}} Renly is at [[Bitterbridge]] with his army when news reaches his camp. He splits his forces and rides with some twenty thousand cavalry to Storm's End to break the siege.{{ref|ACOK|31}} After a failed parlay in which neither brother will yield, the battle is set at dawn.{{ref|ACOK|31}} However, that night Renly is killed by a [[shadow assassin]] summoned by [[Melisandre]].{{Ref|ACOK|33}} With Renly dead, the majority of the host that had accompanied him to Storm's End swears their allegiance to Stannis.{{ref|ACOK|36}} [[House Florent]] and both branches of [[House Fossoway]] also defect to Stannis, but a fifth of Renly’s knights returns to Bitterbridge with Ser [[Loras Tyrell]].{{ref|ACOK|36}} The siege continues, as Storm's End's castellan, Ser [[Cortnay Penrose]], refuses to yield the castle to Stannis{{ref|ACOK|36}} because he fears for the safety of King [[Robert I Baratheon|Robert]]'s [[bastard]] son [[Edric Storm]].{{Ref|ACOK|42}} To end the siege quickly, Ser [[Davos Seaworth]] smuggles Melisandre under the castle by boat, where she summons another shadow to assassinate Cortnay.{{ref|ACOK|42}} After Cortnay's death, the castle yields, leaving Stannis free to advance on [[King's Landing]].{{ref|ACOK|44}}{{Ref|ACOK|45}}
  
===Defense preparations===
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Sixty thousand men from Renly's army are still encamped at Bitterbridge, and when news of Renly's death reaches them,{{Ref|ACOK|42}} fighting breaks out between Stannis' supporters and Renly's loyalists led by the vengeful Loras Tyrell. [[Parmen Crane]] and [[Erren Florent]] &ndash; the two knights sent by Stannis to retrieve the army for him{{Ref|ACOK|42}} &ndash; are taken prisoner,{{Ref|ASOS|Appendix}} while Lord [[Randyll Tarly]] seizes the supplies and puts many men, mostly Florents, to death.{{ref|acok|44}} In [[King's Landing]], the [[small council]] of King Joffrey decides to attempt to make an alliance with [[House Tyrell]] by offering to marry Joffrey to Margaery. [[Petyr Baelish]], representing King Joffrey I,{{ref|ACOK|36}} travels to Bitterbridge and wins the allegiance of [[House Tyrell]]. Riders are sent north to warn Lord [[Tywin Lannister]] of Stannis's threat to the capital.{{ref|ASOS|14}}
Unaware of the capture of Ser [[Parmen Crane]] and Ser [[Erren Florent]], Stannis's army marches on King's Landing. King Stannis has over twenty thousand men at his command, mostly knights and freeriders, against the few thousand gold cloaks of the [[City Watch of King's Landing]]. However, the city is guarded to the south by the [[Blackwater Rush]], and requires an amphibious assault to conquer. Stannis moves his host and fleet upon King's Landing.
 
  
Under the direction of the acting Hand, [[Tyrion Lannister]], as well as Queen Regent [[Cersei Lannister]], King's Landing strengthens its defenses. The city watch is tripled in size, hundreds of sellswords are hired, [[Rosby]] and [[Stokeworth]] send contingents of soldiers, and over thirteen thousand jars of wildfire are found or manufactured and then loaded on to ships. Hundreds of scorpions, spitfires, and catapaults are constructed and placed on the walls{{ref|ACOK|31}} to support the gold cloaks, many of whom are acting as crossbowmen. Most importantly, the manufacture of chainmail, axes, daggers, and swords for the new recruits, to bring them up to par with the other 2,000 equipment-wise, is put on hold before the project is complete. Instead, Tyrion orders the blacksmiths to devote all their time and steel to constructing a massive chain which would allow the defenders to close off the Blackwater Rush.{{Ref|aCoK|15}}
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Meanwhile, [[Robb Stark]] attacks the [[westerlands]], hoping to lure Lord Tywin Lannister, who had been residing at [[Harrenhal]] with his twenty thousand men, away from [[King's Landing]] while King Stannis attacks the city from the south. Stannis's victory would mean the end of King [[Joffrey Baratheon|Joffrey I]], Queen [[Cersei Lannister|Cersei]], and acting [[Hand of the King|Hand]] [[Tyrion Lannister]], breaking Lannister power.{{Ref|ASOS|14}} Tywin begins his march west,{{Ref|ACOK|39}} but Lord [[Edmure Tully]], unaware of Robb's plan,{{Ref|ASOS|14}} refuses to allow the Lannisters to cross the [[Trident]] without [[Battle of the Fords|giving battle]] and places an army of eleven thousand men at the key fords along the [[Red Fork]].{{Ref|ACOK|39}} After several probing attacks, Lord Tywin attempts to force a crossing in a dozen places. Unable to cross the river, Tywin is forced to retreat.{{Ref|ACOK|45}} This delays Tywin just long enough for riders out of Bitterbridge to reach him with word of Stannis's threat to King's Landing.{{Ref|ASOS|14}}
  
===Skirmishes===
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In preparation of the defense of King's Landing, [[Cersei Lannister]] has arranged for the production of vast amounts of [[wildfire]],{{Ref|ACOK|3}} while [[Tyrion Lannister]] has commissioned a great chain boom across the mouth of the [[Blackwater Rush]].{{Ref|ACOK|15}} The [[City Watch of King's Landing|City Watch]] is tripled in size,{{ref|acok|3}} sellswords are hired,{{ref|acok|8}} contingents of soldiers are send from [[Rosby]] and [[Stokeworth]],{{Ref|ACOK|49}}{{Ref|ACOK|57}} and hundreds of scorpions, spitfires, and catapults are constructed and placed on the walls.{{ref|acok|3}}{{ref|ACOK|31}} Tyrion further sends out his hundred and fifty [[Vale mountain clans]]men to harass Stannis' flanks and kill his scouts in the [[kingswood]].{{ref|acok|52}} Stannis's vanguard arrives at the city early, and Joffrey's war galleys are dispatched to exchange arrows with his forces. The vanguard is said to have five thousand men, flying the banners of Houses Fossoway, Estermont and Florent, under the command of Ser [[Guyard Morrigen]].{{Ref|aCoK|52}}
Tyrion sends out his remaining 150 [[Vale mountain clans]]men to harass Stannis's flanks and kill his scouts in the [[kingswood]]. Stannis's vanguard arrives early, and Joffrey's war galleys are dispatched to exchange arrows with his forces. The vanguard is said to have five thousand men, flying the banners of Houses Fossoway, Estermont and Florent, under the command of Ser [[Guyard Morrigen]].{{Ref|aCoK|52}}
 
  
Treacherous waters and inclement weather delay Stannis's fleet on its northward journey from Storm's End. About a dozen ships are lost on the journey to [[Blackwater Bay]] and the troops on land suffer days of harassment from Tyrion's clansmen and skirmishers in the kingswood, despite burning swaths of the forest trying to ferret them out.{{Ref|aCoK|52}} Stannis gives command of the fleet to Ser [[Imry Florent]], who commands from Stannis's [[ships|galley]], the ''[[Fury]]''. Stannis himself is on the south side of the Blackwater with his host, making them create arrows and rafts.{{Ref|aCoK|58}}
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Treacherous waters and inclement weather delay Stannis's fleet on its northward journey from Storm's End. A dozen ships are lost on the journey to [[Blackwater Bay]]. Stannis gives command of the fleet to Ser [[Imry Florent]], who commands from Stannis's [[ships|galley]], the ''[[Fury]]''. Stannis himself is on the south side of the Blackwater with his host, making them create arrows and rafts.{{Ref|aCoK|58}}
  
 
==The Battle==
 
==The Battle==
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[[File:King's Landing Map BattleoftheBlackwater.png|thumb|350px|Map of King's Landing during the Battle of the Blackwater<br>
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'' '''I.''' The [[Red Keep]]; '''II.''' [[Great Sept of Baelor]] upon [[Visenya's Hill]]; '''III.''' [[Dragonpit]] upon [[Rhaenys's Hill]]; '''IV.''' Western baracks of the [[City Watch]]; '''V.''' Eastern baracks of the [[City Watch]] ''
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<br>'''1.''' Stannis' fleet enters the river from Blackwater Bay; Only the ships of [[Salladhor Saan]] remain behind; '''2.''' Once the first lines have passed, the defenders of King's Landing begin raising the chain; By the time the entire fleet has passed, the chain has been raised completely; '''3.''' When Stannis' ships engage Joffrey's fleet, the ships are lit afire with [[wildfire]]; '''4.''' Skirmishes start in [[Flea Bottom]]; '''5.''' King [[Joffrey I Baratheon]] travels to the trebuchets ("the Whores") to launch the [[Antler Men]]; '''6.''' Survivors from Stannis' fleet land on the riverfront and take a ram to the King's Gate; 7. The burning and broken ships have pilled together, creating a bridge of ships allowing Stannis' vanguard to cross the river; '''8.''' An army of [[westermen]] and men from the [[Reach]] arrives to take the forces of Stannis Baratheon in the rear; '''9.''' Seeing the battle is lost, Salladhor Saan, who kept his ships in the bay, lands his ships, allowing Stannis and ~1500 men to retreat.]]
 
===Battle on the River===
 
===Battle on the River===
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The battle opens when Stannis's admiral, Ser [[Imry Florent]], leads Stannis' fleet up the river to engage Joffrey's ships. They enter visual range of the city in the late afternoon.{{Ref|ACOK|58}} Confident of his superior numbers, and knowing that the fleet of King's Landing cannot hope to contest them, Ser Imry does not send scouts ahead, and attacks immediately, leaving the [[Lysene]] galleys of [[Salladhor Saan]] as rearguard out in Blackwater Bay. The fleet is organized into ten battle lines composed of twenty ships each. The first three lines are made up of war galleys belonging to the royal navy and the lords of the narrow sea. Behind them sails the smaller [[Myr]]ish contingent, who are to land troops to attack the city, before joining the first three lines in battle. The smaller and slower sailed ships are to ferry Stannis's host.{{Ref|aCoK|58}} Ser [[Davos Seaworth]] realizes that the two watchtowers at the mouth of the Blackwater Rush are newly build, and he notices the chain in the water.{{ref|ACOK|58}} The fleet continues forward nonetheless. From within the city, pots of pitch are flung at the ships, and the trebuchets located within the city start to fling stones.{{Ref|ACOK|58}}
 
[[File:Battle of the Blackwater.jpg|400px|thumb|The wildfire burns the Blackwater - by Amok ©]]
 
[[File:Battle of the Blackwater.jpg|400px|thumb|The wildfire burns the Blackwater - by Amok ©]]
Stannis's fleet sails up the Blackwater Rush with almost all their strength. They enter visual range of the city in the late afternoon.<ref>''[[A Clash of Kings-Chapter 58]]'': "Shading his eyes against the westering sun, Davos peered at those towers more closely."</ref> Confident of his superior numbers, and knowing that the fleet of King's Landing cannot hope to contest them, Ser Imry does not send scouts ahead, and attacks immediately, leaving only a contingent of 30 [[Lys]]eni mercenary galleys led by [[Salladhor Saan]] as rearguard out in Blackwater Bay. The fleet is organized into ten battle lines composed of twenty ships each. The first three lines, made of war galleys belonging to the royal navy and the lords of the narrow sea, were to smash the enemy fleet. Behind them the smaller [[Myr]]ish contingent was to land troops to attack the city, before joining the first three lines in battle. The smaller and slower sailed ships are to ferry Stannis's host.{{Ref|aCoK|58}}
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[[Tyrion Lannister]] has ordered several of Joffrey's ships to be filled with wildfire. Stannis' fleet is lured further in the bay when Joffrey's pull back. When they engage the fleet of King's Landing, the ships and the river are soon afire. The wildfire destroys nearly every ship in both fleets. To their horror, the men on Stannis' ship discover that the great chain has been raised behind them, cutting off their retreat.{{Ref|ACOK|58}} However, as Ser Imry's first two battle lines had been well upstream of the fire when the hulks went up, some thirty or forty galleys are able to escape the inferno at first.{{Ref|ACOK|59}} Eight ships manage to land under the city walls and put men ashore, while many of the [[Myr]]men escape the flames by sailing for the south bank.{{Ref|ACOK|59}}
  
When Stannis's fleet engages with Joffrey's, they encounter ships loaded to bursting with [[wildfire]], a deadly accelerant, which burns even on water. Spreading downstream it soon engulfs in flames the closely packed ships of both fleets, which find their retreat cut off by the massive chain that has been raised between two winch towers at the mouth of the river.  
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===Attack on King's Landing===
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The city itself is defended by some five thousand seven hundred [[gold cloaks]],{{refn|group=N|name=goldcloaks}} leavened with eight hundred mercenaries and three hundred knights, squires, and men-at-arms from the court and the surrounding [[crownlands]]. As acting [[Hand of the King]], command of the defense is taken by [[Tyrion Lannister]].{{Ref|aCoK|49}}
  
The wildfire unleashed a tremendous amount of damage, destroying Joffrey's small fleet and a large portion of Stannis's. However, a few of Stannis's ships escape the conflagration: eight ships manage to land troops to the northern bank, and forty or so galleys remain ready to row Stannis's main force across the river. Many of the Myrish galleys also manage to land thier men on the south bank. The congestion of wrecks caught by a pier unwittingly provides a bridge - albeit a burning, unstable one - for the army to cross.{{Ref|aCoK|58}}
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At the start of the battle, some small skirmishes arise within the city when some drunkards in [[Flea Bottom]] smash doors and climb into houses. Lord [[Jacelyn Bywater]] sends his gold cloaks to deal with them.{{Ref|ACOK|60}} When rich merchants and such gather in the square before the [[Red Keep]], asking for refuge in the castle, Queen Regent Cersei Lannister commands the gates be kept close.{{Ref|ACOK|60}}
  
===Attack on King's Landing===
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Tyrion tasks several groups of mounted men-at-arms, along with what few [[knight]]s the city has, to harry Stannis's forces as they come ashore. Under the command of [[Sandor Clegane]] and Ser [[Balon Swann]] of the [[Kingsguard]], they manage to help stem the tide, but as the battle drags on, they suffer grievous casualties. Tyrion and King [[Joffrey Baratheon|Joffrey I Baratheon]] look on from the Mud Gate how the fleet goes up in flames. After King Joffrey leaves to shoot the [[Antler Men]] from [[Three Whores|the trebuchets]], guarded by Ser [[Meryn Trant]] and Ser [[Osmund Kettleblack]], Tyrion learns of Stannis' men having landed on the tourney grounds, who are preparing to ram the King's Gate. He arrives at the Mud Gate where Sandor Clegane, who had already led three sorties in which he has lost half his men, refuses to go out again. The [[wildfire]] raging across the river has robbed Clegane of his courage, and his refusal to lead any more sorties threatens to break the morale of the defenders. As they need to hold the river at all costs, Tyrion decides to lead the next sortie himself. Shamed into action by the dwarf's display of courage, several defenders gather to Tyrion's side.{{Ref|AGOT|59}}
[[File:John_Picacio_Tyrion.jpg‎|[[Tyrion Lannister]] during the Battle of the Blackwater ‎- © 2012 John Picacio|thumb|250px|right]]
 
The city itself is defended by some 5,700 gold cloaks (300 having been sent to escort [[Petyr Baelish]] in his attempt to recruit the [[House Tyrell|Tyrells]]), leavened with 800 mercenaries and 300 knights, squires, and men-at-arms from the court and the surrounding [[crownlands]]. As acting Hand of the King, command of the defense is taken by [[Tyrion Lannister]].{{Ref|aCoK|49}}
 
  
To avoid being overwhelmed, Tyrion tasks several groups of mounted men-at-arms, along with what few [[knight]]s the city has, to harry Stannis's forces as they come ashore. Under the command of [[Sandor Clegane]] and Ser [[Balon Swann]] of the [[Kingsguard]], they manage to help stem the tide, but as the battle drags on, they suffer grievous casualties. Battering rams are brought to bear on at least two of the city's gates, and when the [[wildfire]] raging across the river finally robs Clegane of his courage, the refusal of the fearsome Hound to lead any more sorties threatens to break the morale of the defenders.
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While Tyrion is leading the sortie at the King's Gate, the Mud Gate falls under attack as well.{{Ref|ACOK|60}} Queen Regent Cersei Lannister orders King Joffrey, who is still at the trebuchets near the gate, to be brought back to the castle.{{Ref|ACOK|60}} When the defenders see their king retire, their morale breaks and they begin throwing down their spears and flee by the hundreds, leaving the walls and killing their officers, including Ser [[Jacelyn Bywater]], in the process.{{Ref|ASOS|4}} Tyrion manages to disperse the attackers at the [[King's Gate]] and makes for the [[Mud Gate]]. When Ser [[Balon Swann]] points out that the galleys on the river which had smashed into each other have tangled together, creating a bridge of ships, which is being used by Stannis' boldest knights to cross the river, they take the fight to the riverfront.{{Ref|aCoK|61}} Tyrion eventually finds himself on the bridge of ships, when it is about to collapse. He is severely wounded by Ser [[Mandon Moore]] of the [[Kingsguard]], who had been Tyrion's sworn shield throughout the battle.{{Ref|aCoK|61}} Moore is killed by Tyrion's squire, [[Podrick Payne]].{{Ref|acok|61}}{{Ref|acok|67}}
  
Realizing that they have to drive off the rams and hold the river at all costs, Tyrion makes to lead the next sortie himself. Shamed into action by the dwarf's display of courage, the Kingslanders rally to clear the riverbank one last time; at this point [[Cersei Lannister|Cersei]], fearing for her son, has Joffrey withdraw to the [[Red Keep]] from amongst the men.{{Ref|aCoK|62}} As soon as the defenders see the king retire, their morale breaks and they begin throwing down their spears and flee by the hundreds, leaving the walls and killing their officers, including Ser [[Jacelyn Bywater]], in the process. Tyrion manages to disperse the attackers at the [[King's Gate]] and make for the [[Mud Gate]],{{Ref|aCoK|59}} where he takes the fight to the riverfront as they observe a large group of Stannis's soldiers crossing over the bridge of ship wreckage in the river. At dusk<ref>[[A Clash of Kings-Chapter 61]]: "Tyrion swung his horse about to peer down the Blackwater. The current still flowed black and strong beneath, but the surface was a roil of blood and flame. The sky was red and orange and garish green".</ref>, in the fighting amidst the wreckage of the collapsing bridge of boats, Tyrion is severely wounded at the hands of Ser [[Mandon Moore]] of the Kingsguard, who had been Tyrion's sworn shield throughout the battle. {{Ref|aCoK|61}} With the bridge breaking up and their Hand lost in battle, the defenders retreat within the city walls.{{Ref|aSoS|4}} At this point, after only a few hours of resistance, the battle seems to be lost to Tyrion, though at this time he also sees Stannis's army seemingly fighting itself on the other side of the river.
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With the bridge breaking up and their Hand lost in battle, the defenders retreat within the city walls.{{Ref|aSoS|4}} At this point, after only a few hours of resistance, the battle seems to be lost to Tyrion, though at this time he also sees Stannis's army seemingly fighting itself on the other side of the river.
  
===Arrival of Tywin Lannister===
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===Renly's ghost===
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Having learned of Stannis' approaching attack on King's Landing and the alliance between then Iron Throne and [[House Lannister]], Lord [[Tywin Lannister]] has marched his host south. Near the headwaters of the [[Blackwater Rush]] he joins up with Lords [[Mathis Rowan]] and [[Randyll Tarly]], from where they force a march to [[Tumbler's Falls]], where they find Lord [[Mace Tyrell]] and his sons wait with their huge host and a fleet of barges. Together, the Lannisters and Tyrells float down the river to disembark half a day's ride from the capital.{{Ref|ASOS|14}} They arrive at the battle scene at dusk,{{Ref|acok|61}} taking Stannis' army from the rear. Lord Tywin leads the right wing on the north side of the river, while Randyll Tarly commands the center and Mace Tyrell the left.{{Ref|ACOK|62}} However, it is their vanguard, led by Ser [[Garlan Tyrell]],{{Ref|ASOS|67}} which plunges through Stannis' army. Dressed in the recognizable armor of the deceased [[Renly Baratheon]], his former supporters, convinced their dead lord has returned, abandon Stannis.{{Ref|ACOK|62}} "Renly's shade" kills Ser [[Guyard Morrigen]], who leads Stannis' van.{{Ref|ACOK|62}}
 
[[File:T Jedruszek DefendersOfKingsLanding.jpg|350px|thumb|right|Lannister soldiers defending King's Landing – by Tomasz Jedruszek. © Fantasy Flight Games]]
 
[[File:T Jedruszek DefendersOfKingsLanding.jpg|350px|thumb|right|Lannister soldiers defending King's Landing – by Tomasz Jedruszek. © Fantasy Flight Games]]
 
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Seeing that the battle has turned bad, Salladhor Saan puts his ships, which had been kept out in the bay, in along the shore, taking as many people as will fit.{{Ref|asos|4}} [[Rolland Storm]] leads a rearguard action, allowing Stannis and several hundreds of his men, about half of Florents, to reach the ships.{{Ref|aSoS|54}} As Saan’s ship can only take a limited amount of men, thousands are left behind due to lack of space,{{Ref|adwd|66}} and towards the end, men begin to kill each other to get aboard and escape.{{Ref|asos|4}}
Though Stannis's army is still split across the Blackwater, victory is now within his grasp. Just as quickly as the tide had turned in his favor, however, it is turned again by the sudden appearance of foes on his flanks. Unknown to either the attackers or the defenders, the Tyrells have accepted Tyrion's alliance offer, which was sent with Petyr Baelish, and Renly's former army has marched from Bitterbridge, uniting with Lord [[Tywin Lannister]]'s own host in the shadow of the kingswood.{{Ref|aCoK|62}}  
 
 
 
Tyrion's wildlings in the kingswood created a blind spot for Stannis by killing his outriders and scouts, and allowed the Tyrell vanguard to take Stannis's smaller and partially crossed host unaware from the side. Lord Tywin leads the right, on the north side of the river, Mace Tyrell the left, and [[Randyll Tarly]] the center, but much of the fighting is done by the vanguard, led by Ser [[Garlan Tyrell]].
 
 
 
Garlan is dressed in the ornate and unmistakable armor of the late Renly Baratheon, leading to confusion and disorder amongst Stannis's ranks, and even stories that Renly has risen from the dead and fights as a ghost for Joffrey. "Renly's shade" slays Guyard Morrigen, who leads Stannis's van.
 
 
 
Divided, surprised, and outnumbered, Stannis's host breaks, with many of his lords bannermen switching allegiance mid-battle, proving as fickle to Stannis as they had to the deceased Renly. The [[Rolland Storm|Bastard of Nightsong]] leads a rearguard action involving thousands of men that allows some Stannis loyalists, chiefly Florents, to escape, along with Stannis himself on the Lysene galleys which had been left in Blackwater Bay while the rest of the fleet burned.{{Ref|aSoS|54}} However, the majority of the troops involved in this action are left behind due to lack of space on the ships.{{ref|ADWD|66}} The battle rages on until victory is declared at dawn the next morning.{{ref|ACOK|62}}
 
  
 
==Aftermath==
 
==Aftermath==
[[File:Pojypojy Tywin triumphant.jpg‎|The triumphant [[Tywin Lannister]] in [[King's Landing]] - by Pojypojy ©|thumb|350px|right]]
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The Battle of the Blackwater is a major defeat for Stannis. He retreats to Dragonstone with only a fraction of his army, and only Saan’s ships.
Despite [[Stannis Baratheon]]'s survival, the battle is a major defeat for [[House Baratheon of Dragonstone]], as he is able to retreat with only a fraction of his army and a token fleet to [[Dragonstone]].
 
 
 
Most of the captured storm lords and men of the Reach bend the knee to King Joffrey. With the newly-forged Tyrell alliance, the Lannisters now control the whole south and west, commanding overwhelming superiority of numbers in the field. The end of the war seems close.
 
  
===Honors and Rewards===
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Most of those captured during the battle bend the knee to Joffrey, including men sworn to Dragonstone. During a court session, Ser [[Garlan Tyrell]] publicly asks Joffrey to take his sister Margaery to bride, and Joffrey, as previously agreed upon, fakes unwillingness to break his betrothal to [[Sansa Stark]] until the High Septon and small council agree that he is allowed to do so. Multiple honors and rewards are given to the participants and survivors of the battle by King Joffrey and his small council:
King Joffrey and the [[small council]] grant the following honors and rewards to the participants and survivors of the battle:
 
  
* Lord [[Tywin Lannister]], proclaimed ''"Savior of the City"''
+
* Lord [[Tywin Lannister]] is proclaimed ''"[[Savior of the City]]"'', and openly accepts the responsibility of the governance of the realm, officially resuming his office as [[Hand of the King]].{{Ref|acok|65}}
* Lord [[Mace Tyrell]], a seat on the [[small council]] as [[master of ships]].
+
* Ser [[Loras Tyrell]] is given a place in the [[Kingsguard]], replacing Ser [[Mandon Moore]].
* Ser [[Loras Tyrell]], a place in the [[Kingsguard]], replacing Ser [[Mandon Moore]].
+
* Lord [[Mace Tyrell]] is granted a seat on the [[small council]],{{Ref|acok|65}} as [[master of ships]].{{ref|asos|appendix}}
* Ser [[Garlan Tyrell]], the titles, lands and incomes of [[House Florent]], including lordship of [[Brightwater Keep]]. He also asks King Joffrey to marry his sister [[Margaery Tyrell]].
+
* Ser [[Garlan Tyrell]], the titles, lands and incomes of [[House Florent]], including lordship of [[Brightwater Keep]].{{Ref|asos|19}}
* Lords [[Mathis Rowan]] and [[Paxter Redwyne]] seats on the small council as advisers
+
* Lords [[Mathis Rowan]] and [[Paxter Redwyne]] seats on the small council as advisers.{{Ref|asos|19}}
* Ser [[Boros Blount]], re-instated to the [[Kingsguard]] to replace [[Sandor Clegane]].  
+
* Ser [[Philip Foote]], the lands, rights and incomes of [[House Caron]], including Lordship of [[Nightsong]] as Lord Foote, for slaying Lord [[Bryce Caron]].{{Ref|acok|65}}
* Ser [[Philip Foote]], the lands, rights and incomes of [[House Caron]], including Lordship of [[Nightsong]] as Lord Foote, for slaying Lord [[Bryce Caron]].
+
* [[Lothor Brune]], raised to knighthood and granted land and keep in the [[riverlands]] for the capture of Ser [[Jon Fossoway]] and the slaying of Ser [[Bryan Fossoway|Bryan]] and Ser [[Edwyd Fossoway]] after fighting past half a hundred Fossoway men-at-arms.{{Ref|acok|65}}
* [[Lothor Brune]], raised to knighthood and granted land and keep in the [[riverlands]] for the capture of Ser [[Jon Fossoway]] and the slaying of Ser [[Bryan Fossoway|Bryan]] and Ser [[Edwyd Fossoway]] after fighting past half a hundred Fossoway men-at-arms.
+
* [[Josmyn Peckledon]], a sword and suit of plate and a warhorse of the royal stables as well as a [[knight]]hood when coming of age, for killing two knights, wounding a third and capturing two more.{{Ref|acok|65}}
* [[Josmyn Peckledon]], a sword and suit of plate and a warhorse of the royal stables as well as a [[knight]]hood when coming of age, for killing two knights, wounding a third and capturing two more.
+
* Goodman [[Willit]], a [[House Swyft|Swyft]] man-at-arms who saved his master [[Harys Swyft]] from beneath his dying horse and a dozen attackers. Granted a spear with a silver-banded haft, a hauberk of new-forged ringmail and a full helm with visor. His elder son taken as a squire and his younger one as page at [[Casterly Rock]].{{Ref|acok|65}}
* Goodman [[Willit]], a [[House Swyft|Swyft]] man-at-arms who saved his master [[Harys Swyft]] from beneath his dying horse and a dozen attackers. Granted a spear with a silver-banded haft, a hauberk of new-forged ringmail and a full helm with visor. His elder son taken as a squire and his younger one as page at [[Casterly Rock]].
+
* [[Wisdom]] [[Hallyne]], raised to lordship, albeit without lands or castle.{{Ref|acok|65}}
* [[Wisdom]] [[Hallyne]], raised to lordship, credited for the employment of [[wildfire]] in the battle.
+
* Ser [[Lancel Lannister]], granted the lands, castle and rights of [[House Darry]] as Lord of [[Darry]].{{Ref|acok|65}}
* Ser [[Lancel Lannister]], granted the lands, castle and rights of [[House Darry]] as Lord of [[Darry]].
+
* Lord [[Petyr Baelish]], for his "faithful service to crown and realm", granted the castle of [[Harrenhal]] with all its attendant lands and incomes, and raised to [[Lord Paramount of the Trident]].{{Ref|acok|65}}
* Lord [[Petyr Baelish]], for his "faithful service to crown and realm", granted the castle of [[Harrenhal]] with all its attendant lands and incomes, and raised to [[Lord Paramount of the Trident]].
 
* [[Bronn]], captain of the guard of [[Tyrion Lannister]], raised to [[knight]]hood as Ser Bronn of the Blackwater. Credited for the chain.
 
* [[Osfryd Kettleblack|Osfryd]] and [[Osney Kettleblack]], also raised to [[knight]]hood.
 
 
* Surviving captains from Joffrey's warships ''[[River Arrow]]'', ''[[Wildwind]]'' and ''[[Prince Aemon]]'', and under officers from ''[[Godsgrace (ship)|Godsgrace]]'', ''[[Ramshead]]'', ''[[Lance]]'' and ''[[Lady of Silk]]'', honored by the crown.{{ref|ACOK|65}}
 
* Surviving captains from Joffrey's warships ''[[River Arrow]]'', ''[[Wildwind]]'' and ''[[Prince Aemon]]'', and under officers from ''[[Godsgrace (ship)|Godsgrace]]'', ''[[Ramshead]]'', ''[[Lance]]'' and ''[[Lady of Silk]]'', honored by the crown.{{ref|ACOK|65}}
 +
* More than six hundred men are knighted by the [[Kingsguard]],{{Ref|acok|65}} including sellsword [[Bronn]], raised to [[knight]]hood as Ser Bronn of the Blackwater, and [[Osfryd Kettleblack|Osfryd]] and [[Osney Kettleblack]].{{Ref|asos|4}}
  
===Highborn Hostages===
+
==Hostages and casualties==
{{Columns|3|
+
[[File:John_Picacio_Tyrion.jpg‎|[[Tyrion Lannister]] during the Battle of the Blackwater ‎- © 2012 John Picacio|thumb|250px|right]]
* Lord [[Ardrian Celtigar]]
+
===Hostages===
* Lord [[Alesander Staedmon]]
+
{{Columns|2|
* Lord [[Steffon Varner]]
+
* Lord [[Ardrian Celtigar]], bends the knee to Joffrey
* Lord [[House Willum|Willum]]
+
* Lord [[Alesander Staedmon]], bends the knee to Joffrey
* Ser [[Eldon Estermont]]
+
* Lord [[Steffon Varner]], bends the knee to Joffrey
* Ser [[Mark Mullendore]]
+
* Lord [[House Willum|Willum]], bends the knee to Joffrey
* Ser [[Tanton Fossoway]]
+
* Ser [[Eldon Estermont]], bends the knee to Joffrey
* Ser [[Donnel Swann]]
+
* Ser [[Mark Mullendore]], bends the knee to Joffrey
* Ser [[Ronnet Connington]]
+
* Ser [[Tanton Fossoway]], bends the knee to Joffrey
* Ser [[Jon Fossoway]]
+
* Ser [[Donnel Swann]], gets ransomed and bends the knee to Joffrey
* Ser [[Bonifer Hasty]]
+
* Ser [[Ronnet Connington]], bends the knee to Joffrey
* Ser [[Dermot|Dermot of the Rainwood]]
+
* Ser [[Jon Fossoway]], bends the knee to Joffrey
* Ser  [[Timon|Timon the Scrapesword]]
+
* Ser [[Bonifer Hasty]], bends the knee to Joffrey
* [[Josua Willum]]
+
* Ser [[Dermot]] of the [[Rainwood]], bends the knee to Joffrey
* [[Elyas Willum]]
+
* Ser  [[Timon]], "the Scrapesword", bends the knee to Joffrey
* [[Aurane Waters]]
+
* [[Josua Willum]], bends the knee to Joffrey
 +
* [[Elyas Willum]], bends the knee to Joffrey
 +
* [[Aurane Waters]], bends the knee to Joffrey
 +
* A bastard of [[House Florent]], remains defiant and is executed{{ref|acok|65}}
 +
* Ser [[Shadrich]] of the Shady Glen, ransoms himself
 
}}
 
}}
 +
 
===Notable Casualties===
 
===Notable Casualties===
 
====Lannister/Tyrell forces====
 
====Lannister/Tyrell forces====
Line 244: Line 340:
 
* ''[[Faithful]]''
 
* ''[[Faithful]]''
 
* ''[[Sceptre]]''
 
* ''[[Sceptre]]''
* ''[[Red Raven]]''
+
* ''[[Red Raven (ship)|Red Raven]]''
 
* ''[[Cat]]''
 
* ''[[Cat]]''
 
* ''[[Courageous]]''
 
* ''[[Courageous]]''
Line 255: Line 351:
  
 
==Quotes==
 
==Quotes==
{{quote|A wall of red-hot steel, blazing wood, and swirling [[wildfire|green flame]] stretched before him. The mouth of the [[Blackwater Rush]] had turned into the mouth of hell.{{ref|ACOK|58}}}} - [[Davos Seaworth]]'s thoughts
+
{{quote|A wall of red-hot steel, blazing wood, and swirling [[wildfire|green flame]] stretched before him. The mouth of the [[Blackwater Rush]] had turned into the mouth of hell.{{ref|ACOK|58}}|[[Davos Seaworth]]'s thoughts}}
 
 
 
 
 
 
{{quote|It was '''Lord [[Renly Baratheon|Renly]]'''! Lord Renly in his green armor, with the fire shimmering off his golden antlers! Lord Renly with his tall spear in his hand! They say he killed Ser [[Guyard Morrigen]] himself in single combat, and a dozen other great knights as well. It was Renly, it was Renly, it was Renly! Oh! the banners, darling Sansa! Oh! to be a knight!{{ref|ACOK|62}}}} – [[Dontos Hollard]], to [[Sansa Stark]]
 
  
 +
{{Quote|We're delivered, [[Sansa Stark|sweetling]]! They came up the [[roseroad]] and along the riverbank, through all the fields [[Stannis Baratheon|Stannis]] had burned, the ashes puffing up around their boots and turning all their armor grey, but oh! the banners must have been bright, the [[House Tyrell|golden rose]] and [[House Lannister|golden lion]] and all the others, the [[House Marbrand|Marbrand]] tree and the [[House Rowan|Rowan]], [[House Tarly|Tarly's]] huntsman and [[House Redwyne|Redwyne]] grapes and [[Arwyn Oakheart|Lady Oakheart's]] leaf. All the [[westermen]], all the power of [[Highgarden]] and [[Casterly Rock]]! [[Tywin Lannister|Lord Tywin]] himself had their right wing on the north side of the river, with [[Randyll Tarly]] commanding the center and [[Mace Tyrell]] the left, but the vanguard won the fight. They plunged through Stannis like a lance through a pumpkin, every man of them howling like some demon in steel. And do you know who led the vanguard? Do you? Do you? Do you? It was [[Renly Baratheon|Lord Renly]]! Lord Renly in his green armor, with the fires shimmering off his golden antlers! Lord Renly with his tall spear in his hand! They say he killed Ser [[Guyard Morrigen]] himself in single combat, and a dozen other great knights as well. It was Renly, it was Renly, it was Renly! Oh! the banners, darling Sansa! Oh! to be a knight!{{ref|acok|62}}|[[Dontos Hollard]] to [[Sansa Stark]]}}
  
{{Quote|My hirelings betray me, my friends are scourged and shamed, and I lie here rotting. I thought I won the bloody battle. Is this what triumph tastes like?{{Ref|aSoS|4}}}} – [[Tyrion Lannister]]'s thoughts
+
{{Quote|My hirelings betray me, my friends are scourged and shamed, and I lie here rotting. I thought I won the bloody battle. Is this what triumph tastes like?{{Ref|aSoS|4}}|[[Tyrion Lannister]]'s thoughts}}
  
 +
{{Quote|That chain of yours, that was cunning.{{Ref|aSoS|19}}|[[Mace Tyrell]] to Tyrion Lannister}}
  
{{quote|Too many good men died that day.{{ref|ADWD|66}}}} – [[Tyrion Lannister]], to [[Kem]]
+
{{quote|Too many good men died that day.{{ref|ADWD|66}}|[[Tyrion Lannister]] to [[Kem]]}}
  
 
==See also==
 
==See also==
 
:*[[:Category:Images of the Battle of the Blackwater|Images of the Battle of the Blackwater]]
 
:*[[:Category:Images of the Battle of the Blackwater|Images of the Battle of the Blackwater]]
  
==References and Notes==
+
==Notes==
{{references|3}}
+
{{Notes}}
 +
 
 +
==References==
 +
{{references|2}}
  
{{Template:War of the Five Kings}}
+
{{War of the Five Kings}}
  
 
[[Category:Battles|Blackwater]]
 
[[Category:Battles|Blackwater]]
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[[Category:House Marbrand battles|Blackwater]]
 
[[Category:House Marbrand battles|Blackwater]]
 
[[Category:House Massey battles|Blackwater]]
 
[[Category:House Massey battles|Blackwater]]
 +
[[Category:House Meadows battles|Blackwater]]
 
[[Category:House Morrigen battles|Blackwater]]
 
[[Category:House Morrigen battles|Blackwater]]
 
[[Category:House Mullendore battles|Blackwater]]
 
[[Category:House Mullendore battles|Blackwater]]

Latest revision as of 04:45, 7 June 2019

Battle of the Blackwater
T Jedruszek BattleoftheB ship.jpg
by Tomasz Jedruszek. © Fantasy Flight Games
Conflict War of the Five Kings
Date 299 AC
Place mouth of the Blackwater Rush and King's Landing
Result Decisive victory for House Baratheon of King's Landing
Combatants
House Baratheon (King's Landing).svg Iron Throne/ House Baratheon of King's Landing:

King's Landing garrison: Gold cloaks

Crownlands

Vale mountain clans

Relief force (late battle): House Lannister.svg Westerlands, led by House Lannister

House Tyrell.svg The Reach, led by House Tyrell

House Baratheon (Dragonstone).svg House Baratheon of Dragonstone:

Crownlands

Stormlands

The Reach

Salladhor Saan's pirate fleet (Lysene)

Myrish sellsails
Commanders
King's Landing garrison:

Relief force:

Force on land:

Fleet:

The Battle of the Blackwater[44] is the largest battle in the War of the Five Kings. The battle is fought between the forces loyal to Joffrey I Baratheon, the King on the Iron Throne, and those loyal to Stannis I Baratheon, the King in the Narrow Sea. After eliminating his younger brother Renly, a rival claimaint to the Iron Throne, Stannis gains the loyalty of nearly all of the Stormlords and Reach lords and advances on King's Landing by land and sea, intent on seizing the city and taking control of the Iron Throne.

Prelude

Convinced that Joffrey Baratheon is not King Robert I Baratheon's son, Stannis believes his claim to the Iron Throne is the true one. However, he lacks the strength to attack King's Landing, as few Houses are sworn to Dragonstone and the rocky, volcanic islands surrounding Dragonstone have a sparse population, and the men of the stormlands have given their support to his younger brother Renly, the Lord of Storm's End, who has proclaimed himself king as well. Additionally, Renly has taken Margaery Tyrell to wife, which has earned him the support of the men from the Reach as well.[45] On Dragonstone, the red priestess Melisandre tells Stannis of two futures she has seen in her flames; One in which Stannis is defeated in King's Landing by his brother Renly, and one in which he sails to Storm's End, where his brother shall die, and his men will flock to Stannis.[17]

Stannis arrives in the stormlands with his five thousand men and lays siege to the coastal fortress Storm's End, the seat of his younger brother, Renly.[32][46] Renly is at Bitterbridge with his army when news reaches his camp. He splits his forces and rides with some twenty thousand cavalry to Storm's End to break the siege.[39] After a failed parlay in which neither brother will yield, the battle is set at dawn.[39] However, that night Renly is killed by a shadow assassin summoned by Melisandre.[33] With Renly dead, the majority of the host that had accompanied him to Storm's End swears their allegiance to Stannis.[28] House Florent and both branches of House Fossoway also defect to Stannis, but a fifth of Renly’s knights returns to Bitterbridge with Ser Loras Tyrell.[28] The siege continues, as Storm's End's castellan, Ser Cortnay Penrose, refuses to yield the castle to Stannis[28] because he fears for the safety of King Robert's bastard son Edric Storm.[17] To end the siege quickly, Ser Davos Seaworth smuggles Melisandre under the castle by boat, where she summons another shadow to assassinate Cortnay.[17] After Cortnay's death, the castle yields, leaving Stannis free to advance on King's Landing.[34][47]

Sixty thousand men from Renly's army are still encamped at Bitterbridge, and when news of Renly's death reaches them,[17] fighting breaks out between Stannis' supporters and Renly's loyalists led by the vengeful Loras Tyrell. Parmen Crane and Erren Florent – the two knights sent by Stannis to retrieve the army for him[17] – are taken prisoner,[21] while Lord Randyll Tarly seizes the supplies and puts many men, mostly Florents, to death.[34] In King's Landing, the small council of King Joffrey decides to attempt to make an alliance with House Tyrell by offering to marry Joffrey to Margaery. Petyr Baelish, representing King Joffrey I,[28] travels to Bitterbridge and wins the allegiance of House Tyrell. Riders are sent north to warn Lord Tywin Lannister of Stannis's threat to the capital.[48]

Meanwhile, Robb Stark attacks the westerlands, hoping to lure Lord Tywin Lannister, who had been residing at Harrenhal with his twenty thousand men, away from King's Landing while King Stannis attacks the city from the south. Stannis's victory would mean the end of King Joffrey I, Queen Cersei, and acting Hand Tyrion Lannister, breaking Lannister power.[48] Tywin begins his march west,[49] but Lord Edmure Tully, unaware of Robb's plan,[48] refuses to allow the Lannisters to cross the Trident without giving battle and places an army of eleven thousand men at the key fords along the Red Fork.[49] After several probing attacks, Lord Tywin attempts to force a crossing in a dozen places. Unable to cross the river, Tywin is forced to retreat.[47] This delays Tywin just long enough for riders out of Bitterbridge to reach him with word of Stannis's threat to King's Landing.[48]

In preparation of the defense of King's Landing, Cersei Lannister has arranged for the production of vast amounts of wildfire,[50] while Tyrion Lannister has commissioned a great chain boom across the mouth of the Blackwater Rush.[51] The City Watch is tripled in size,[50] sellswords are hired,[52] contingents of soldiers are send from Rosby and Stokeworth,[6][5] and hundreds of scorpions, spitfires, and catapults are constructed and placed on the walls.[50][39] Tyrion further sends out his hundred and fifty Vale mountain clansmen to harass Stannis' flanks and kill his scouts in the kingswood.[18] Stannis's vanguard arrives at the city early, and Joffrey's war galleys are dispatched to exchange arrows with his forces. The vanguard is said to have five thousand men, flying the banners of Houses Fossoway, Estermont and Florent, under the command of Ser Guyard Morrigen.[18]

Treacherous waters and inclement weather delay Stannis's fleet on its northward journey from Storm's End. A dozen ships are lost on the journey to Blackwater Bay. Stannis gives command of the fleet to Ser Imry Florent, who commands from Stannis's galley, the Fury. Stannis himself is on the south side of the Blackwater with his host, making them create arrows and rafts.[25]

The Battle

Map of King's Landing during the Battle of the Blackwater
I. The Red Keep; II. Great Sept of Baelor upon Visenya's Hill; III. Dragonpit upon Rhaenys's Hill; IV. Western baracks of the City Watch; V. Eastern baracks of the City Watch
1. Stannis' fleet enters the river from Blackwater Bay; Only the ships of Salladhor Saan remain behind; 2. Once the first lines have passed, the defenders of King's Landing begin raising the chain; By the time the entire fleet has passed, the chain has been raised completely; 3. When Stannis' ships engage Joffrey's fleet, the ships are lit afire with wildfire; 4. Skirmishes start in Flea Bottom; 5. King Joffrey I Baratheon travels to the trebuchets ("the Whores") to launch the Antler Men; 6. Survivors from Stannis' fleet land on the riverfront and take a ram to the King's Gate; 7. The burning and broken ships have pilled together, creating a bridge of ships allowing Stannis' vanguard to cross the river; 8. An army of westermen and men from the Reach arrives to take the forces of Stannis Baratheon in the rear; 9. Seeing the battle is lost, Salladhor Saan, who kept his ships in the bay, lands his ships, allowing Stannis and ~1500 men to retreat.

Battle on the River

The battle opens when Stannis's admiral, Ser Imry Florent, leads Stannis' fleet up the river to engage Joffrey's ships. They enter visual range of the city in the late afternoon.[25] Confident of his superior numbers, and knowing that the fleet of King's Landing cannot hope to contest them, Ser Imry does not send scouts ahead, and attacks immediately, leaving the Lysene galleys of Salladhor Saan as rearguard out in Blackwater Bay. The fleet is organized into ten battle lines composed of twenty ships each. The first three lines are made up of war galleys belonging to the royal navy and the lords of the narrow sea. Behind them sails the smaller Myrish contingent, who are to land troops to attack the city, before joining the first three lines in battle. The smaller and slower sailed ships are to ferry Stannis's host.[25] Ser Davos Seaworth realizes that the two watchtowers at the mouth of the Blackwater Rush are newly build, and he notices the chain in the water.[25] The fleet continues forward nonetheless. From within the city, pots of pitch are flung at the ships, and the trebuchets located within the city start to fling stones.[25]

The wildfire burns the Blackwater - by Amok ©

Tyrion Lannister has ordered several of Joffrey's ships to be filled with wildfire. Stannis' fleet is lured further in the bay when Joffrey's pull back. When they engage the fleet of King's Landing, the ships and the river are soon afire. The wildfire destroys nearly every ship in both fleets. To their horror, the men on Stannis' ship discover that the great chain has been raised behind them, cutting off their retreat.[25] However, as Ser Imry's first two battle lines had been well upstream of the fire when the hulks went up, some thirty or forty galleys are able to escape the inferno at first.[4] Eight ships manage to land under the city walls and put men ashore, while many of the Myrmen escape the flames by sailing for the south bank.[4]

Attack on King's Landing

The city itself is defended by some five thousand seven hundred gold cloaks,[N 2] leavened with eight hundred mercenaries and three hundred knights, squires, and men-at-arms from the court and the surrounding crownlands. As acting Hand of the King, command of the defense is taken by Tyrion Lannister.[6]

At the start of the battle, some small skirmishes arise within the city when some drunkards in Flea Bottom smash doors and climb into houses. Lord Jacelyn Bywater sends his gold cloaks to deal with them.[53] When rich merchants and such gather in the square before the Red Keep, asking for refuge in the castle, Queen Regent Cersei Lannister commands the gates be kept close.[53]

Tyrion tasks several groups of mounted men-at-arms, along with what few knights the city has, to harry Stannis's forces as they come ashore. Under the command of Sandor Clegane and Ser Balon Swann of the Kingsguard, they manage to help stem the tide, but as the battle drags on, they suffer grievous casualties. Tyrion and King Joffrey I Baratheon look on from the Mud Gate how the fleet goes up in flames. After King Joffrey leaves to shoot the Antler Men from the trebuchets, guarded by Ser Meryn Trant and Ser Osmund Kettleblack, Tyrion learns of Stannis' men having landed on the tourney grounds, who are preparing to ram the King's Gate. He arrives at the Mud Gate where Sandor Clegane, who had already led three sorties in which he has lost half his men, refuses to go out again. The wildfire raging across the river has robbed Clegane of his courage, and his refusal to lead any more sorties threatens to break the morale of the defenders. As they need to hold the river at all costs, Tyrion decides to lead the next sortie himself. Shamed into action by the dwarf's display of courage, several defenders gather to Tyrion's side.[54]

While Tyrion is leading the sortie at the King's Gate, the Mud Gate falls under attack as well.[53] Queen Regent Cersei Lannister orders King Joffrey, who is still at the trebuchets near the gate, to be brought back to the castle.[53] When the defenders see their king retire, their morale breaks and they begin throwing down their spears and flee by the hundreds, leaving the walls and killing their officers, including Ser Jacelyn Bywater, in the process.[41] Tyrion manages to disperse the attackers at the King's Gate and makes for the Mud Gate. When Ser Balon Swann points out that the galleys on the river which had smashed into each other have tangled together, creating a bridge of ships, which is being used by Stannis' boldest knights to cross the river, they take the fight to the riverfront.[8] Tyrion eventually finds himself on the bridge of ships, when it is about to collapse. He is severely wounded by Ser Mandon Moore of the Kingsguard, who had been Tyrion's sworn shield throughout the battle.[8] Moore is killed by Tyrion's squire, Podrick Payne.[8][55]

With the bridge breaking up and their Hand lost in battle, the defenders retreat within the city walls.[41] At this point, after only a few hours of resistance, the battle seems to be lost to Tyrion, though at this time he also sees Stannis's army seemingly fighting itself on the other side of the river.

Renly's ghost

Having learned of Stannis' approaching attack on King's Landing and the alliance between then Iron Throne and House Lannister, Lord Tywin Lannister has marched his host south. Near the headwaters of the Blackwater Rush he joins up with Lords Mathis Rowan and Randyll Tarly, from where they force a march to Tumbler's Falls, where they find Lord Mace Tyrell and his sons wait with their huge host and a fleet of barges. Together, the Lannisters and Tyrells float down the river to disembark half a day's ride from the capital.[48] They arrive at the battle scene at dusk,[8] taking Stannis' army from the rear. Lord Tywin leads the right wing on the north side of the river, while Randyll Tarly commands the center and Mace Tyrell the left.[7] However, it is their vanguard, led by Ser Garlan Tyrell,[3] which plunges through Stannis' army. Dressed in the recognizable armor of the deceased Renly Baratheon, his former supporters, convinced their dead lord has returned, abandon Stannis.[7] "Renly's shade" kills Ser Guyard Morrigen, who leads Stannis' van.[7]

Lannister soldiers defending King's Landing – by Tomasz Jedruszek. © Fantasy Flight Games

Seeing that the battle has turned bad, Salladhor Saan puts his ships, which had been kept out in the bay, in along the shore, taking as many people as will fit.[41] Rolland Storm leads a rearguard action, allowing Stannis and several hundreds of his men, about half of Florents, to reach the ships.[20] As Saan’s ship can only take a limited amount of men, thousands are left behind due to lack of space,[43] and towards the end, men begin to kill each other to get aboard and escape.[41]

Aftermath

The Battle of the Blackwater is a major defeat for Stannis. He retreats to Dragonstone with only a fraction of his army, and only Saan’s ships.

Most of those captured during the battle bend the knee to Joffrey, including men sworn to Dragonstone. During a court session, Ser Garlan Tyrell publicly asks Joffrey to take his sister Margaery to bride, and Joffrey, as previously agreed upon, fakes unwillingness to break his betrothal to Sansa Stark until the High Septon and small council agree that he is allowed to do so. Multiple honors and rewards are given to the participants and survivors of the battle by King Joffrey and his small council:

Hostages and casualties

Tyrion Lannister during the Battle of the Blackwater ‎- © 2012 John Picacio

Hostages

Notable Casualties

Lannister/Tyrell forces

Stannis' forces

Ships

King Joffrey

King Stannis

Quotes

A wall of red-hot steel, blazing wood, and swirling green flame stretched before him. The mouth of the Blackwater Rush had turned into the mouth of hell.[25]

Davos Seaworth's thoughts

We're delivered, sweetling! They came up the roseroad and along the riverbank, through all the fields Stannis had burned, the ashes puffing up around their boots and turning all their armor grey, but oh! the banners must have been bright, the golden rose and golden lion and all the others, the Marbrand tree and the Rowan, Tarly's huntsman and Redwyne grapes and Lady Oakheart's leaf. All the westermen, all the power of Highgarden and Casterly Rock! Lord Tywin himself had their right wing on the north side of the river, with Randyll Tarly commanding the center and Mace Tyrell the left, but the vanguard won the fight. They plunged through Stannis like a lance through a pumpkin, every man of them howling like some demon in steel. And do you know who led the vanguard? Do you? Do you? Do you? It was Lord Renly! Lord Renly in his green armor, with the fires shimmering off his golden antlers! Lord Renly with his tall spear in his hand! They say he killed Ser Guyard Morrigen himself in single combat, and a dozen other great knights as well. It was Renly, it was Renly, it was Renly! Oh! the banners, darling Sansa! Oh! to be a knight![7]

My hirelings betray me, my friends are scourged and shamed, and I lie here rotting. I thought I won the bloody battle. Is this what triumph tastes like?[41]

Tyrion Lannister's thoughts

That chain of yours, that was cunning.[2]

Mace Tyrell to Tyrion Lannister

Too many good men died that day.[43]

See also

Notes

  1. 1.0 1.1 1.2 1.3 1.4 1.5 The Crownland Houses of Brune of the Dyre Den, Byrch, Hayford, Hogg, Rosby and Rykker are not directly mentioned at Blackwater, but as they are sworn directly to the Iron Throne, it is likely they took part in the battle or provided men to the City Watch.
  2. 2.0 2.1 The city watch contains six thousand men, although only two thousand of these, who had received their gold cloak from Robert, are seasoned men.[6] Three hundred gold cloaks later escort Petyr Baelish to Bitterbridge,[28] leaving only five thousand seven hundred.
  3. Stannis has ten lines of twenty ships, bringing his total to ~200; Stannis has four times more ships than Joffrey, giving Joffrey ~50 ships of the royal fleet. (The Baratheon forces would have no information regarding the trading vessels seized on Tyrion's command.) However, unbeknownst to Stannis and his men, five of these ships (King Robert's Hammer, Seaswift, Lionstar, Bold Wind, and Lady Lyanna) have departed King’s Landing long before to escort Myrcella to Braavos.[30] When the Battle of the Blackwater takes place, they have not yet returned.[25]
  4. The host of Renly Baratheon is said to number a hundred thousand.[29] Renly himself claims to have eighty thousand with him at Bitterbridge, while another ten thousand are with Lord Mace Tyrell at Highgarden.[32] The forces of House Tyrell make up the majority of Renly's forces. Catelyn Stark says that Renly's cavalry includes at least ten thousand heavy lancers,[33] and that it accompanies him to Storm's End to lift the siege, while his foot, according to Stannis near sixty thousand strong,[17] remains at Bitterbridge when Renly goes to lift the siege of Storm’s End. As Renly previously stated that the total of his men at Bitterbridge numbered eighty thousand, this would make his cavalry at Storm's End 20,000 strong. As only one fifth of Renly's knights did not join Stannis,[28] Stannis would have gained ~16,000 troops, bringing his total force to ~21,000.
    Of those who remain, some — chiefly those of House Florent — are put to death by Lord Randyll Tarly after Renly's death.[17][34] As House Florent can field two thousand men at best,[35] this would reduce Renly's foot to fifty-eight thousand at a minimum. A fifth of the knights that had accompanied Renly to Storm's End return to join the other forces from the Reach,[28] but how many of his ten (of fifteen) thousand cavalry had been knights is unknown. Mace Tyrell's additional ten thousand at Highgarden would bring the total to ~70,000 soldiers from House Tyrell.
    Petyr Baelish tells Joffrey Baratheon's small council that Mace Tyrell can field fifty thousand swords.[28] According to Tyrion Lannister, some fifty to seventy thousand Tyrell soldiers are in the King's Landing vicinity after the Battle of the Blackwater.[36]
  5. Tywin's host originally is 20,000 men strong.[37] Despite desertions and insurgency in the riverlands, and many minor sieges and skirmishes, he still has about the same number before the Battle of the Fords.[38] Despite casualties during the battle, Tywin is later said to have twenty thousand swords in King's Landing,[36] suggesting he either gained men or did not lose a significant amount.
  6. Stannis originally had an army of five thousand men, but he claims to have twenty thousand men after Renly's death has caused a large part of his men to join Stannis. According to Davos, Stannis has “nearly twenty thousand” cavalry alone.[25] If true, this would mean Stannis had close to 25,000 soldiers in total, though Stannis claims to only have about 20,000 men immediately after Renly's death;[17] this would indicate that either Davos mistaken/rounding up, Stannis was rounding down, or that more men joined Stannis soon after he said he had 20,000. However, Tyrion states that four fifths of the cavalry present joined Stannis, which from a force of 20,000 would equate to 16,000 men, giving Stannis ~21,000 total when his original 5,000 are added, which lends credence to Stannis's figure ~20,000 being closer to the truth than Davos's ~25,000. Additionally, Stannis's force on land is referred to by Davos as being entirely mounted and making better pace than an infantry force as a result;[25] since Stannis's original host numbered 4,600 infantry and 400 cavalry[32] before being joined by ~16,000 of Renly's cavalry, this would mean his force on land totaled 16,400 soldiers, with his original infantry (mainly consisting of "companies of spearmen and archers",[32] as opposed to the knights and man-at-arms that make up the bulk of his main host) being confined to his ships.
  7. Stannis' fleet consists of ten battlelines of twenty ships,[25] bringing the total amount of ship to two hundred.
  8. The first three lines of twenty are made up of Westerosi war galleys. Out of these sixty ships, at least nine are known to belong to the lords of the Narrow Sea (Pride of Driftmark, Bold Laughter, Harridan, and Seahorse from House Velaryon; Red Claw from House Celtigar; Swordfish from House Bar Emmon; Piety, Prayer, and Devotion, commandeered from House Sunglass).
  9. Described as a smaller contingent "the smaller, slower Myrish contingent".[25] As the fleet is stated in the same chapter to be divided into ten lines of twenty, this means the Myrmen have at most forty ships, but possibly as few as twenty.
  10. The Lyseni Salladhor Saan commands his Valyrian and two dozen smaller galleys.[35]
  11. Following the deaths from and the desertions during the battle, the city watch only contains some forty-four hundred men,[41] where it had numbered six thousand before.[6]
  12. Sandor Clegane loses half his knights and sellswords.[4] Tyrion Lannister leads another sally, which is nearly wiped out.[8]

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 1.19 1.20 1.21 1.22 1.23 A Clash of Kings, Chapter 65, Sansa VIII.
  2. 2.0 2.1 2.2 2.3 2.4 2.5 2.6 A Storm of Swords, Chapter 19, Tyrion III.
  3. 3.0 3.1 A Storm of Swords, Chapter 67, Jaime VIII.
  4. 4.0 4.1 4.2 4.3 A Clash of Kings, Chapter 59, Tyrion XIII.
  5. 5.0 5.1 5.2 5.3 A Clash of Kings, Chapter 57, Sansa V.
  6. 6.00 6.01 6.02 6.03 6.04 6.05 6.06 6.07 6.08 6.09 6.10 6.11 A Clash of Kings, Chapter 49, Tyrion XI.
  7. 7.0 7.1 7.2 7.3 7.4 7.5 A Clash of Kings, Chapter 62, Sansa VII.
  8. 8.0 8.1 8.2 8.3 8.4 8.5 A Clash of Kings, Chapter 61, Tyrion XIV.
  9. 9.0 9.1 A Storm of Swords, Chapter 75, Samwell IV.
  10. 10.0 10.1 A Storm of Swords, Chapter 10, Davos II.
  11. 11.0 11.1 A Feast for Crows, Appendix.
  12. A Dance with Dragons, Chapter 3, Jon I.
  13. 13.0 13.1 13.2 A Dance with Dragons, Chapter 44, Jon IX.
  14. A Dance with Dragons, Chapter 7, Jon II.
  15. A Storm of Swords, Chapter 25, Davos III.
  16. A Feast for Crows, Chapter 44, Jaime VII.
  17. 17.0 17.1 17.2 17.3 17.4 17.5 17.6 17.7 17.8 A Clash of Kings, Chapter 42, Davos II.
  18. 18.0 18.1 18.2 18.3 A Clash of Kings, Chapter 52, Sansa IV.
  19. A Dance with Dragons, Chapter 17, Jon IV.
  20. 20.0 20.1 A Storm of Swords, Chapter 54, Davos V.
  21. 21.0 21.1 21.2 A Storm of Swords, Appendix.
  22. A Feast for Crows, Chapter 27, Jaime III.
  23. The Winds of Winter, Theon I
  24. A Dance with Dragons, Chapter 42, The King's Prize.
  25. 25.00 25.01 25.02 25.03 25.04 25.05 25.06 25.07 25.08 25.09 25.10 25.11 25.12 25.13 A Clash of Kings, Chapter 58, Davos III.
  26. A Storm of Swords, Chapter 5, Davos I.
  27. A Dance with Dragons, Chapter 61, The Griffin Reborn.
  28. 28.0 28.1 28.2 28.3 28.4 28.5 28.6 28.7 A Clash of Kings, Chapter 36, Tyrion VIII.
  29. 29.0 29.1 29.2 A Clash of Kings, Chapter 17, Tyrion IV.
  30. A Clash of Kings, Chapter 41, Tyrion IX.
  31. A Feast for Crows, Bad reference param2.
  32. 32.0 32.1 32.2 32.3 A Clash of Kings, Chapter 22, Catelyn II.
  33. 33.0 33.1 A Clash of Kings, Chapter 33, Catelyn IV.
  34. 34.0 34.1 34.2 A Clash of Kings, Chapter 44, Tyrion X.
  35. 35.0 35.1 A Clash of Kings, Prologue.
  36. 36.0 36.1 A Storm of Swords, Chapter 38, Tyrion V.
  37. A Game of Thrones, Chapter 56, Tyrion VII.
  38. A Storm of Swords, Chapter 45, Catelyn V.
  39. 39.0 39.1 39.2 39.3 A Clash of Kings, Chapter 31, Catelyn III.
  40. A Clash of Kings, Chapter 1, Arya I.
  41. 41.0 41.1 41.2 41.3 41.4 41.5 41.6 41.7 A Storm of Swords, Chapter 4, Tyrion I.
  42. A Feast for Crows, Chapter 17, Cersei IV.
  43. 43.0 43.1 43.2 A Dance with Dragons, Chapter 66, Tyrion XII.
  44. A Storm of Swords, Chapter 16, Sansa II.
  45. A Clash of Kings, Prologue.
  46. A Clash of Kings, Chapter 25, Tyrion VI.
  47. 47.0 47.1 A Clash of Kings, Chapter 45, Catelyn VI.
  48. 48.0 48.1 48.2 48.3 48.4 A Storm of Swords, Chapter 14, Catelyn II.
  49. 49.0 49.1 A Clash of Kings, Chapter 39, Catelyn V.
  50. 50.0 50.1 50.2 A Clash of Kings, Chapter 3, Tyrion I.
  51. A Clash of Kings, Chapter 15, Tyrion III.
  52. A Clash of Kings, Chapter 8, Tyrion II.
  53. 53.0 53.1 53.2 53.3 A Clash of Kings, Chapter 60, Sansa VI.
  54. A Game of Thrones, Chapter 59, Catelyn IX.
  55. A Clash of Kings, Chapter 67, Tyrion XV.