Gregor Clegane

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House Clegane.svg
Gregor Clegane
House Clegane.svg
GregorCleganebyJohn Stanko.jpg
Gregor, by John Stanko © Fantasy Flight Games

Alias(es) The Mountain That Rides[1]
The Mountain[1]
Lord Tywin's mad dog[2]
The Enormity That Rides[3]
The great dog[4]
Title(s) Ser
Knight of Clegane's Keep
Allegiance House Clegane
House Lannister
Culture(s) Westermen
Born In 265 AC or 266 AC[5]
Died In 300 AC, at the Red Keep
Spouse(s) Three unknown wives
Father Clegane
Book(s) A Game of Thrones (appears)
A Clash of Kings (appears)
A Storm of Swords (appears)
A Feast for Crows (mentioned)
A Dance with Dragons (mentioned)
The Winds of Winter (mentioned)

Played by Conan Stevens ~ Season 1
Ian Whyte ~ Season 2
Hafþór Júlíus Björnsson ~ Season 4 - Season 8
TV series Season 1 | Season 2 | Season 4 | Season 5 | Season 6 | Season 7 | Season 8

Ser Gregor Clegane is the Knight of Clegane's Keep and the head of House Clegane, a landed knight and bannerman to House Lannister of Casterly Rock. Gregor is a freakishly large man and for this he is often called the Mountain That Rides or simply the Mountain. His soldiers are known as the Mountain's men.

In the television adaptation Game of Thrones, Gregor is played by Conan Stevens (Season 1), Ian Whyte (Season 2), and Hafþór Júlíus Björnsson (Season 4 - Season 8).[6]

Appearance and Character

See also: Images of Gregor Clegane

Gregor is well known for his size, cruelty, and prowess in battle. He is extremely tall, being close to eight feet in height[7] (or 2,4 meters). He has "massive shoulders and arms thick as the trunk of small trees",[7] and a voice like stone breaking. Gregor weighs over thirty stone[8] (420 lbs, or 190 kgs), nearly all of it muscle, making him near inhumanly strong. Ser Jaime Lannister regards the Mountain as one of the strongest living men ("like nothing human") in Westeros when thinking of who could match him in a fight.[9]

Gregor wears the heaviest, thickest steel plate armor in the Seven Kingdoms. Dull grey in color and battle-scarred,[10] his armor is so heavy that no ordinary man would be able to move, let alone fight effectively while wearing it.[8] Below the plate he wears chainmail and boiled leather. He also wears a plate helm with only a narrow slit for vision, atop of which is a stone fist punching up towards the sky. The Mountain's strength allows him to wield a six-foot, two-handed greatsword with just one hand,[10] giving him enormous reach while still wielding a shield. Such is the power of Gregor's strength that he has been known to hack men in half with just a single blow.[8] Gregor's massive oaken shield is rimmed in black iron, and it bears the three black dogs of House Clegane on a yellow field.[8] He rides huge stallions,[7][10] one of which is as ill-tempered as its rider.[11]

The violent Gregor is a sadistic murderer and rapist.[12][8][13] Lady Catelyn Stark thinks he has an evil reputation, and Ser Brynden Tully compares him to a "frothing dog".[14] Despite being a dim[15][16] and brutal man, he has excellent warrior instincts.[8] The Mountain is solitary, never leaving his own lands except for wars or tourneys.[7]

Gregor has at least two squires, including Joss Stilwood[12] and an unnamed pimply Sarsfield squire.[17] According to Joss, Gregor constantly suffers from extreme headaches and consumes vast quantities of milk of the poppy to try and dull the pain. The cause of these headaches is unknown, perhaps due to some condition of his gigantism, though Merrett Frey's experiences indicate that a tourney injury or head blow in battle can be debilitating.[18] The Mountain's men often refer to him simply as "Ser".[12][19][20] According to his brother, Sandor Clegane, Gregor once killed one of his own men because the soldier snored too loudly.[21]

History

Gregor kills Prince Aegon in front of Princess Elia Martell, from Game of Thrones Blu-ray

As a young boy, eleven or twelve years old, Gregor caused his brother Sandor's facial scars by holding the younger boy's face to a hot brazier as punishment for playing with a toy he had discarded. Their father spread the story that the injuries were caused by bedding that had caught fire.[1]

Four years later, Gregor was knighted by Prince Rhaegar Targaryen,[1] presumably prior to the tourney of Harrenhal.[22] Gregor is a suspected kinslayer; there are rumors that Gregor killed his father, sister, and his first two wives. His keep is said to be a grim place where servants vanish unaccountably and even the dogs are afraid to enter the halls. On the day that Gregor came into his inheritance, Sandor entered the service of House Lannister, never to return.[7]

At the age of seventeen, Gregor participated in the Sack of King's Landing during Robert's Rebellion. He and Ser Amory Lorch scaled Maegor's Holdfast when the Lannister troops reached the Red Keep. Gregor entered the nursery of the infant Prince Aegon, son of Prince Rhaegar, and killed the baby present by dashing the boy's head against a wall. Then he raped and murdered Aegon's mother, Princess Elia, supposedly with the boy's blood and brains still on his hands.[7][23][24] The identities of the two murderers have not been publicly confirmed in the recorded history,[25] although Gregor's involvement is common knowledge at Casterly Rock.[23]

Gregor participated in the suppression of Greyjoy's Rebellion.[7]

Recent Events

A Game of Thrones

Conan Stevens as Gregor during the Hand's tourney in Game of Thrones.
Gregor, by Michael Komarck ©

Ser Gregor and his brother Sandor defeat several opponents in the Hand's tourney. Gregor slays Ser Hugh of the Vale in his second joust when his lance rides up and pierces the new-made knight's throat. According to Sandor, Gregor noticed the knight's gorget was not fastened properly and Gregor purposely drove his lance there.[1] Gregor defeats Ser Balon Swann, but is finally unhorsed by Ser Loras Tyrell, who rides a mare in heat to the joust, which unnerves Gregor's stallion. Gregor falls into a rage and kills his stallion with one blow of his sword. He then knocks the unprepared Loras from his courser and prepares to kill the young knight, but Sandor intervenes and the brothers duel. Gregor finally comes to his senses when King Robert I Baratheon orders him to stop.[7]

After the tourney, Gregor rides back to his keep. Upon his journey home from the tourney with seven of his men, Gregor broods on his loss. An overflowing river detours the group to a nearby alehouse, where he and his men gang rape the brewer's thirteen-year-old daughter, Layna.[12]

After Tyrion Lannister is kidnapped by Catelyn Stark, Gregor is commanded by Tyrion's father, Lord Tywin Lannister, to raid the riverlands without banners, presenting himself as a common brigand.[2] This is to draw Catelyn's husband, Lord Eddard Stark, the Hand of the King, out into the field, but Eddard has been injured in the streets of King's Landing.[26] Since Eddard cannot go and execute Gregor himself, Loras Tyrell volunteers to go in his place. Lord Stark instead chooses Lord Beric Dondarrion to command the party bringing Gregor to the king's justice.[2]

King Robert is mortally wounded while hunting in the kingswood, and he is succeeded by his eldest son, King Joffrey I Baratheon.[27] Eddard is imprisoned in the black cells.[28] Meanwhile, Beric's party is ambushed by Lannisters while crossing the Red Fork, and Gregor attacks them as they retreat in the battle at the Mummer's Ford.[29] The Mountain also burns Pinkmaiden and Stone Hedge.[30] He takes Stone Hedge's food, burns its harvest, and rapes a daughter of Lord Jonos Bracken.[31][13]

Robb Stark leads a host of northmen to rescue his father, Lord Eddard, and he divides his forces at the Twins.[32] Gregor joins with Tywin's host and commands the vanguard and the left flank during the battle on the Green Fork against the northern host, leading by intimidation. Tywin places Tyrion under Gregor's command during the battle. In the first charge, Gregor's stallion is killed by Karstark spearmen, but the Mountain is unhurt and goes on fighting. After the Lannister victory, Tywin reveals that he had planned for the undisciplined left flank to collapse and for Robb to prusue them, only to then be crushed by the men of Tywin and his brother, Ser Kevan Lannister. The Lannisters learn that the northern host was led not by Robb but by Lord Roose Bolton, however.[10]

Gregor sits with Tywin's war council at the crossroads inn when they receive word that Tywin's elder son, Ser Jaime Lannister, of the Kingsguard, was captured by Robb in the Whispering Wood, and Jaime's unsuspecting army at Riverrun was then defeated in the Battle of the Camps. After learning that Jaime's outriders had failed to scout the movements of the Stark forces, Gregor suggests that the outriders be blinded. Tywin withdraws to Harrenhal but leaves Gregor, Ser Amory Lorch, and Vargo Hoat to harry the riverlands, each of them commanding three hundred cavalry.[33]

A Clash of Kings

Gregor and the Mountain's men, by Nordheimer ©

Amerei Frey is widowed after her husband, Ser Pate of the Blue Fork, is killed fighting Gregor.[34][35]

Gregor's band sacks Castle Darry, where Gregor kills the eight-year-old Lord Lyman Darry.[14] Gregor continues his raiding, causing enormous destruction and killing entire villages with impunity. For a time he unwittingly holds Arya Stark as a captive, and she witnesses many of his atrocities firsthand. Gregor silently watches as his men, such as the Tickler, interrogate and torture smallfolk. When a peasant girl fights back after being raped by Gregor's men, the Mountain beheads her with his sword. Arya adds Gregor to her prayer kill list.[36]

The Mountain's men march surviving captives to Harrenhal, where they are forced into servitude to House Lannister. During the War of the Five Kings, Gregor's band fights numerous skirmishes with the brotherhood without banners; one such skirmish results in Gregor supposedly killing Beric Dondarrion a second time.[12]

During the Battle of the Fords, Gregor's band joins up with Tywin's host and attacks the crossing of the Red Fork at the Stone Mill, which is fiercely defended by Ser Edmure Tully's reserve. Gregor's force is pushed back, however, and he is forced to retreat.[37]

A Storm of Swords

Lord Tywin Lannister is aware that Helman Tallhart and Robett Glover are leading a northern host toward Duskendale, so he sends Lord Randyll Tarly to meet them. Meanwhile, Tywin has Gregor march up the kingsroad to cut off the northmen's retreat.[38] Randyll is victorious in the battle at Duskendale,[39] and Gregor captures the retreating Robett.[40]

Gregor chases Lord Roose Bolton's army as they march to the Twins, taking several highborn captives including Ser Wylis Manderly in the fighting at the fords of the Trident. Ronnel Stout and Ser Kyle Condon are left behind by Roose to hold the river against Gregor.[35]

Sandor Clegane reveals to his captive, Arya Stark, that he desires to kill his brother.[21]

After the Red Wedding, Gregor crosses the Trident and seizes the ruby ford.[41] Lord Tywin Lannister orders Gregor to retake Harrenhal, which is held by Vargo Hoat and the Brave Companions, and put the castle to the sword.[24][41] Seeking revenge for having his foot cut off by Vargo, a cook at Harrenhal opens a postern gate for Gregor. Inside, the Mountain's men slaughter the inhabitants and the defenders (bar the cook who opened the gate, the castle smith Ben Blackthumb and a girl named Pia whom the Mountain and his men rape repeatedly). The Mountain gives special treatment to Vargo, who is known as "the Goat", forcing him to eat his own cooked limbs ("roast goat") and serving him to the captive northmen as well.[20]

Prince Oberyn Martell, the Red Viper of Dorne, comes to King's Landing to claim the seat on the small council on behalf of his brother Doran, the Prince of Dorne. Oberyn seeks justice for the murder of their sister, Elia Martell, and her children, as was agreed with the acting Hand of the King, Tyrion Lannister.[3] However, the new Hand, Tyrion's father Tywin, means to forgo that promise. Tywin plans on lying to Oberyn and claiming that the deceased Ser Amory Lorch was to blame for all three deaths. While Amory was guilty of the murder of Princess Rhaenys, he was not responsible for the deaths of Elia and Prince Aegon. Tywin intends to keep Gregor far away from King's Landing during Oberyn's stay.[24] He reveals he had the Mountain and others search for his son Jaime when he learned of his release from Riverrun, but Jaime arrives at the capital under the guard of Brienne of Tarth.[42]

Gregor fighting Oberyn Martell, by Zippo514 ©

Tywin's plan to keep Gregor away is ruined when Tyrion is put on trial for the murder of King Joffrey I Baratheon and Tyrion's accuser, Queen Regent Cersei Lannister, announces that her champion will be Gregor in the event of a trial by combat. Cersei names Gregor in order to thwart Tyrion from using Bronn or anyone else to defend him in a trial by combat given Gregor's monstrous reputation.[43] This move, however, leads Elia's brother, Oberyn, on seeing a chance to fulfill House Martell's long-held desire for vengeance against her murderer, to agree to champion Tyrion in opposition.[43]

Gregor fights in his usual style—with heavy armor, his thick oaken shield, and his greatsword in one hand—but Oberyn outfights him with speed and spear. Though most of Oberyn's attacks are deflected by Gregor's plate, Oberyn cleverly attacks the joints in the armor, and eventually wounds Gregor after the Mountain tires from chasing Oberyn. An angry Gregor kills a stableboy of the Red Keep during the duel. Though crippled by numerous wounds, Gregor manages to grab hold of Oberyn and smash in the Dornishman's face. Before killing Oberyn, however, Gregor roars that he killed Elia and Aegon for all to hear.[8]

Gregor's wounds mortify, and Grand Maester Pycelle believes that Oberyn had treated his spear with poison.[44] With Gregor having publicly confessed to killing Elia, Tywin fears Dorne might join Stannis Baratheon, which could prolong the War of the Five Kings for years. Tywin planned on having Gregor executed to appease House Martell, but needed it to be seen that the King's Justice is the one who carries out the deed, not poison. Tywin commands Pycelle to heal Gregor, but Pycelle's efforts prove fruitless.[44]

A Feast for Crows

Gregor's condition continues to deteriorate. The venom turns the blood in Gregor's body black with gangrene, and any leeches that touch him die instantly. His piss is full of pus, and the venom eats a hole the size of a fist in Gregor's side. His screams of agony are so loud they can be heard in the entire Red Keep, and wake several people up during the night. Qyburn concludes that the poison was manticore venom thickened with sorcery to draw out the Mountain's dying instead of killing him instantly. Queen Regent Cersei Lannister suggests that Gregor be executed by Ser Ilyn Payne, but she agrees to instead let Qyburn continue studying the poison.[18]

Qyburn brings the insensible and dying Gregor to the dungeons below the Red Keep.[18] Cersei later reports to the small council that Gregor has died.[45] The Mountain's skull is to be sent to Sunspear in Dorne as restitution for the deaths of Elia and her children.[46] Qyburn says it took beetles many hours to clean flesh from the bone.[45]

Qyburn later mentions working on creating an unbeatable champion for Cersei, and uses several female prisoners in his experiments.[47][48] He has her order a suit of plate armor so thick and heavy that the armorer who created it states that no man is strong enough to move and fight in it.[48]

Ser Jaime Lannister arrives at Harrenhal, which is held by the Mountain's men, and informs the soldiers they can either serve Ser Bonifer Hasty, the new castellan of Harrenhal, or join Jaime's host for the siege of Riverrun. Bonifer later tells Jaime that he refuses to take any of the sinners into his service, however.[20]

A Dance with Dragons

Ser Robert Strong by Robert O'Leary

The Mountain's skull is brought to Sunspear by Ser Balon Swann of the Kingsguard, and is presented to Prince Doran Martell, Princess Arianne Martell, and the eldest of the Oberyn's eight bastard daughters (Obara, Tyene and Nymeria Sand). Obara ponders if the head is really Gregor's. Doran notes that it is certainly large enough to be so and Tyene confirms that if the poison her father used so much as broke the Mountain's skin, then Gregor is dead.[49]

The death of Ser Arys Oakheart in Dorne leaves a vacancy on the Kingsguard of King Tommen I Baratheon, so the imprisoned Queen Cersei Lannister requests that the white cloak be brought to Qyburn.[50] During Cersei's walk of atonement, Qybyrn reveals an enormous eight-foot-tall knight encased from head to heel in gleaming white armor.[51]

Other members of the Kingsguard claim that their new brother does not eat, sleep, drink, or even visit the privy. He is not seen without his armor and never removes his helm. At no time has he spoken and it is claimed by Qyburn that he has taken a holy vow of silence until Cersei's innocence is proven and the realm purged of evil. He wears a helm bearing seven plumes in the colors of the Faith, and his cloak of office is clasped with icons in the shape of seven-pointed stars. Though he is introduced as Ser Robert Strong, many in the Red Keep have guessed the identity of the silent giant. Given the skull being sent to Dorne, Ser Kevan Lannister wonders what will be revealed if Robert's helmet is ever removed.[52]

Quotes by Gregor

A man who sees nothing has no use for his eyes, cut them out and give them to your next outrider. Tell him you hope that four eyes might see better than two ... and if not, the man after him will have six.[33]

—Gregor after the Battle of the Camps

Oberyn: Have they told you who I am?
Gregor: Some dead man.[8]

Oberyn Martell and Gregor

Elia of Dorne. I killed her screaming whelp. Then I raped her. Then I smashed her fucking head in. Like this.[8]

—Gregor to Oberyn Martell

Quotes about Gregor

Gregor, by Amok ©

No one could ever withstand Gregor.[1]

Pycelle: The man is an anointed knight.
Marq: A false knight! Lord Tywin's mad dog.[2]

That beast's head would make a noble gift for all the people of the realm, I vow.[14]

Ser Gregor has served us well. No other knight in the realm inspires such terror in our enemies.[24]

Ellaria: You are going to fight that?
Oberyn: I am going to kill that.[8]

The flesh mortifies and the wounds ooze pus. Even maggots will not touch such foulness. His convulsions are so violent that I have had to gag him to prevent him from biting off his own tongue. I have cut away as much tissue as I dare, and treated the rot with boiling wine and bread mold, to no avail. The veins in his arms are turning black. When I leeched him, all the leeches died.[44]

Qyburn: It is a wonder that the man is still alive, if truth be told.
Cersei: His size. Gregor is a very large man. Also a very stupid one. Too stupid to know when he should die, it seems.[18]

If ever a man deserved to die screaming, it was Gregor Clegane.[49]

Family

 
 
 
 
Clegane
 
Unknown
wife
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
Clegane
 
Unknown
wife
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
Unknown
3 wives
 
Gregor
 
Sandor
 
Daughter
 
 


See also

References

  1. 1.0 1.1 1.2 1.3 1.4 1.5 A Game of Thrones, Chapter 29, Sansa II.
  2. 2.0 2.1 2.2 2.3 A Game of Thrones, Chapter 43, Eddard XI.
  3. 3.0 3.1 A Storm of Swords, Chapter 38, Tyrion V.
  4. A Storm of Swords, Chapter 43, Arya VIII.
  5. See the Gregor Clegane calculation.
  6. HBO: Game of Thrones: cast and crew
  7. 7.0 7.1 7.2 7.3 7.4 7.5 7.6 7.7 A Game of Thrones, Chapter 30, Eddard VII.
  8. 8.0 8.1 8.2 8.3 8.4 8.5 8.6 8.7 8.8 8.9 A Storm of Swords, Chapter 70, Tyrion X.
  9. A Storm of Swords, Chapter 21, Jaime III.
  10. 10.0 10.1 10.2 10.3 A Game of Thrones, Chapter 62, Tyrion VIII.
  11. A Clash of Kings, Chapter 38, Arya VIII.
  12. 12.0 12.1 12.2 12.3 12.4 A Clash of Kings, Chapter 30, Arya VII.
  13. 13.0 13.1 A Dance with Dragons, Chapter 48, Jaime I.
  14. 14.0 14.1 14.2 A Clash of Kings, Chapter 7, Catelyn I.
  15. A Storm of Swords, Chapter 44, Jaime VI.
  16. So Spake Martin: To Be Continued (Chicago, IL; May 6-8), May 07, 2005
  17. George R. R. Martin's A World of Ice and Fire, Arya Stark.
  18. 18.0 18.1 18.2 18.3 A Feast for Crows, Chapter 7, Cersei II.
  19. A Storm of Swords, Chapter 74, Arya XIII.
  20. 20.0 20.1 20.2 A Feast for Crows, Chapter 27, Jaime III.
  21. 21.0 21.1 A Storm of Swords, Chapter 47, Arya IX.
  22. So Spake Martin: Various questions concerning Tywin, Oberyn, Gregor, the North, and Sansa, April 15, 2008
  23. 23.0 23.1 A Clash of Kings, Chapter 17, Tyrion IV.
  24. 24.0 24.1 24.2 24.3 A Storm of Swords, Chapter 53, Tyrion VI.
  25. The World of Ice & Fire, The Fall of the Dragons: The End.
  26. A Game of Thrones, Chapter 39, Eddard X.
  27. A Game of Thrones, Chapter 49, Eddard XIV.
  28. A Game of Thrones, Chapter 58, Eddard XV.
  29. A Game of Thrones, Chapter 55, Catelyn VIII.
  30. A Game of Thrones, Chapter 56, Tyrion VII.
  31. A Game of Thrones, Chapter 71, Catelyn XI.
  32. A Game of Thrones, Chapter 59, Catelyn IX.
  33. 33.0 33.1 A Game of Thrones, Chapter 69, Tyrion IX.
  34. A Clash of Kings, Appendix.
  35. 35.0 35.1 A Storm of Swords, Chapter 49, Catelyn VI.
  36. A Clash of Kings, Chapter 26, Arya VI.
  37. A Clash of Kings, Chapter 45, Catelyn VI.
  38. A Storm of Swords, Chapter 4, Tyrion I.
  39. A Storm of Swords, Chapter 19, Tyrion III.
  40. A Storm of Swords, Chapter 35, Catelyn IV.
  41. 41.0 41.1 A Storm of Swords, Chapter 60, Tyrion VIII.
  42. A Storm of Swords, Chapter 62, Jaime VII.
  43. 43.0 43.1 A Storm of Swords, Chapter 66, Tyrion IX.
  44. 44.0 44.1 44.2 A Storm of Swords, Chapter 72, Jaime IX.
  45. 45.0 45.1 A Feast for Crows, Chapter 17, Cersei IV.
  46. A Feast for Crows, Chapter 2, The Captain Of Guards.
  47. A Feast for Crows, Chapter 24, Cersei V.
  48. 48.0 48.1 A Feast for Crows, Chapter 32, Cersei VII.
  49. 49.0 49.1 A Dance with Dragons, Chapter 38, The Watcher.
  50. A Dance with Dragons, Chapter 54, Cersei I.
  51. A Dance with Dragons, Chapter 65, Cersei II.
  52. A Dance with Dragons, Epilogue.

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