Rickard Stark

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House Stark.svg Lord
Rickard Stark
House Stark.svg
Lord rickard stark by mike hallstein-dakhri7.jpg
Rickard Stark, by Mike Hallstein

Allegiance House Stark
Predecessor Edwyle Stark
Successor Eddard Stark
Culture Northmen
Born In 230250 AC[1]Winterfell[2]
Died In 282 AC, the Red Keep, King's Landing
Father Edwyle Stark
Mother Marna Locke
Spouse Lady Lyarra Stark

Played by Wayne Foskett
TV series Season 6

Rickard Stark was Lord of Winterfell, Warden of the North, and head of House Stark during the reign of King Aerys II Targaryen. He was the only child of Lord Edwyle Stark and Lady Marna Locke.[3] Rickard was the father of the current Lord of Winterfell, Eddard Stark. In the television adaptation Game of Thrones he is portrayed by Wayne Foskett in a Season 6 flashback.


See also: Images of Rickard Stark

In the crypts of Winterfell there is a statue of Rickard at his tomb, which is flanked by those of his eldest son, Brandon, and his daughter, Lyanna. Rickard's engraving is said to match his appearance in life with a long, stern face and quiet dignity.[4] There is a stone direwolf at the statue's feet.[5] Lord Stark owned steel armor with golden spurs.[6]


Rickard was born at Winterfell[2] the only child of Lord Edwyle Stark and Lady Marna Locke.[3] Rickard married his cousin once removed, Lyarra Stark, and had four children: Brandon (b. 262 AC), Eddard (b. 263 AC), Lyanna (b. 266 AC or 267 AC), and Benjen. Lord Rickard visited King's Landing in 264 AC, leading King Aerys II Targaryen to consider building another Wall and claiming more land in the far north.[7] Lady Olenna Redwyne was loosely acquainted with Rickard.[8]

Rickard negotiated the betrothal of his heir Brandon to Catelyn Tully of Riverrun.[4] According to a semi-canon source, Rickard accepted a betrothal between his daughter Lyanna and Lord Robert Baratheon of Storm's End when his younger son Eddard carried Robert's proposal to Winterfell.[9] According to Barbrey Dustin, both proposed marriages were the idea of Rickard's maester at the time, Walys.[10]

In 282 AC, Brandon was traveling to meet Rickard's party coming down from the north in preparation of Brandon's wedding to Catelyn Tully, when news of Lyanna's abduction at the hand of Prince Rhaegar Targaryen reached him.[11] Brandon went to King's Landing with a small company of young nobles to challenge Rhaegar, but was imprisoned with his companions by King Aerys II Targaryen on the charge of conspiring to kill the crown prince. Aerys next summoned Rickard and the fathers of Brandon's companions to come and answer for the crimes of their sons.[6]

Rickard demanded a trial by combat, which was granted by the king. According to Ser Jaime Lannister, Rickard expected to fight one of the Kingsguard. Dressed in his steel armor, he was brought to the throne room, where King Aerys II declared that fire was the champion of House Targaryen. Rickard was suspended from the rafters, and a fire was lit beneath him by the pyromancers. Rickard was slowly cooked to death in his armor, while his son Brandon, with a Tyroshi noose around his neck and a sword just out of his reach, was made to watch his father roast. Trying to reach the sword to save his dying father, Brandon strangled himself.[6] Ser Gerold Hightower and Ser Jaime Lannister of the Kingsguard were among those present for Rickard's and Brandon's execution. The other nobles and their sons were also executed by Aerys, with the exception of Ethan Glover.[6]

Rickard was succeeded by his second son, Eddard. Together with Lords Jon Arryn, Hoster Tully, and Robert Baratheon, Eddard was a leader of Robert's Rebellion, the revolt against the Targaryens that overthrew their dynasty. Some have blamed Rickard's alliances for the near fall of House Stark.[12]

Lord Eddard did not reveal the true manner of Rickard's death to his family; both his wife Catelyn and his son Bran believed Rickard was beheaded.[5][6]

Recent Events

A Clash of Kings

Rickard appears in Theon Greyjoy's nightmare of King Robert I Baratheon's feast of the dead at Winterfell.[13]

Meera Reed takes the heavy sword from Rickard's tomb when Bran Stark and his companions leave the crypt of Winterfell.[14]


Lord Rickard demanded trial by combat, and the king granted the request. Stark armored himself as for battle, thinking to duel one of the Kingsguard. Me, perhaps. Instead they took him to the throne room and suspended him from the rafters while two of Aerys's pyromancers kindled a blaze beneath him. The king told him that fire was the champion of House Targaryen. So all Lord Rickard needed to do to prove himself innocent of treason was ... well, not burn.[6]

They tend to us when we are sick and injured, or distraught over the illness of a parent or a child. Whenever we are weakest and most vulnerable, there they are. Sometimes they heal us, and we are duly grateful. When they fail, they console us in our grief, and we are grateful for that as well. Out of gratitude we give them a place beneath our roof and make them privy to all our shames and secrets, a part of every council. And before too long, the ruler has become the ruled. That was how it was with Lord Rickard Stark. Maester Walys was his grey rat's name.[10]

The day I learned that Brandon was to marry Catelyn Tully, though ... there was nothing sweet about that pain. He never wanted her, I promise you that. He told me so, on our last night together ... but Rickard Stark had great ambitions too. Southron ambitions that would not be served by having his heir marry the daughter of one of his own vassals.[15]


Rickard was an only child.[3][16] However, according to Old Nan, Rickard might have had a baby brother named Brandon, who died of a summer fever at the age of three.[17] This Brandon is actually Rickard's half-uncle.[3]

Jon Snow


  1. See the Rickard Stark calculation.
  2. 2.0 2.1 George R. R. Martin's A World of Ice and Fire, Rickard Stark.
  3. 3.0 3.1 3.2 3.3 The World of Ice & Fire, Appendix: Stark Lineage.
  4. 4.0 4.1 A Game of Thrones, Chapter 4, Eddard I.
  5. 5.0 5.1 A Game of Thrones, Chapter 66, Bran VII.
  6. 6.0 6.1 6.2 6.3 6.4 6.5 A Clash of Kings, Chapter 55, Catelyn VII.
  7. The World of Ice & Fire, The Targaryen Kings: Aerys II.
  8. A Storm of Swords, Chapter 6, Sansa I.
  9. George R. R. Martin's A World of Ice and Fire, Eddard Stark.
  10. 10.0 10.1 A Dance with Dragons, Chapter 37, The Prince of Winterfell.
  11. George R. R. Martin's A World of Ice and Fire, Catelyn Tully.
  12. The World of Ice & Fire, The North: The Lords of Winterfell.
  13. A Clash of Kings, Chapter 50, Theon IV.
  14. A Clash of Kings, Chapter 69, Bran VII.
  15. A Dance with Dragons, Chapter 41, The Turncloak.
  16. A Storm of Swords, Chapter 45, Catelyn V.
  17. A Game of Thrones, Chapter 24, Bran IV.