Trial of seven

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The trial of seven[1][2] or Trial of Seven[3][4] is a form of trial by combat an offended party can demand during trial. It is linked to the Faith of the Seven and Andal tradition. The Andals believed that if seven champions fought on each side, the gods thus honored would be more likely to see justice done.[1]

The accused is declared innocent if his accuser or accusers are either defeated or yield, thereby withdrawing their accusations. If the accused is slain, it is believed the gods have judged him guilty, and the trial of seven ends. If the accused cannot find six men to stand with him, he is declared guilty as well.[1]

History

Maegor I Targaryen

In 42 AC during the Faith Militant uprising, Ser Damon Morrigen, the Grand Captain of the Warrior's Sons challenged King Maegor I Targaryen to a trial of seven, believing the right to rule the Seven Kingdoms did not belong to Maegor. Maegor accepted the challenge, and faced Damon and six other Warrior's Sons. The man-at-arms Dick Bean inspired five knights to defend the king. While the tales about the trial are often contradictory, they all agree that Maegor was the last one standing. However, Maegor was severely injured by the last of the Warrior's Sons, fell to the ground shortly after killing his last opponent, and was unconscious for several weeks.[5][4]

Maegor's champions
The Faith's champions

Duncan the Tall

A trial of seven, the first in a century,[6] occurred during the tourney at Ashford Meadow in 209 AC. After a hedge knight named Ser Duncan the Tall attacked Prince Aerion Targaryen in defense of a Tanselle, a Dornish puppeteer, Duncan was challenged to a trial by seven. Duncan was accused by both Aerion and his older brother, Prince Daeron Targaryen, who had falsely accused Duncan of having kidnapped Prince Aegon Targaryen. After Daeron was defeated and Aerion withdrew his accusation during the trial, Duncan was declared innocent. However, the popular Prince Baelor Targaryen was mortally wounded in the trial by his brother, Prince Maekar.[1]

Duncan's champions
Accusers' champions

Quotes

Duncan: I do not understand. What is this trial of seven?

Baelor: It is another form of trial by combat. Ancient, seldom invoked. It came across the narrow sea with the Andals and their seven gods. In any trial by combat, the accuser and accused are asking the gods to decide the issue between them. The Andals believed that if the seven champions fought on each side, the gods, being thus honored, would be more like to take a hand and see that a just result was achieved.

Leo: Or mayhap they simply had a taste for swordplay.[1]

See Also

References

  1. 1.0 1.1 1.2 1.3 1.4 The Hedge Knight.
  2. The Sworn Sword.
  3. The Mystery Knight.
  4. 4.0 4.1 Fire & Blood, The Sons of the Dragon.
  5. The World of Ice & Fire, The Targaryen Kings: Maegor I.
  6. The World of Ice & Fire, The Targaryen Kings: Daeron II.