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‘Game Of Thrones’: The (Not So) Great Houses Of Westeros
DwayneD   |  @   |  

Game of Thrones Houses of Westeros

So by now you’ve hopefully seen the season finale of Game of Thrones Season 6, and if you have, be sure to check out Empress Eve’s detailed review. One thing that really stuck out in this final season was that women took over Westeros and Essos, in most cases, freeing people from the dark reality of male, jerk leadership — but that’s a story for a different post.

Still, in order for that to happen, we’ve got to take stock of who had to be removed in order for the ladies to gain power. Men had to die. And in a world, where only male heirs seem to matter, that means whole families have been wiped off the board. Let’s take stock, shall we?

When we started our journey into Westeros, we were told that there were seven kingdoms, each ruled by a great and ancient house:

  • The Kingdom of the North, ruled by the Starks of Winterfell.
  • The Kingdom of the Mountain and the Vale, ruled by the Arryns of the Eyrie.
  • The Kingdom of the Riverlands, ruled by the Tullys of Riverrun
  • The Kingdom of the Westerlands, ruled by the Lannisters of Casterly Rock
  • The Kingdom of the Stormlands, Ruled by the Baratheons of Storm’s End
  • The Kingdom of the Reach, ruled by the Tyrells of Highgarden
  • The Principality of Dorne, ruled by the Martells of Sunspear
  • In addition, you have the Crownlands, which is a sort of “federal” territory, as it holds the capital, Kings Landing, ruled by the Targaryens.

    But here’s the thing: a lot of these so-called great houses have lost their greatness:

  • The Kingdom of the North, ruled by the Starks of Winterfell: UNCLEAR, as Bran Stark is the only remaining trueborn heir and an invalid from the waist down.
  • The Kingdom of the Mountain and the Vale, ruled by the Arryns of the Eyrie: Extant through Robert Arryn
  • The Kingdom of the Riverlands, ruled by the Tullys of Riverrun: Extant through Edmure Tully
  • The Kingdom of the Westerlands, ruled by the Lannisters of Casterly Rock: Extant through Jaime Lannister
  • The Kingdom of the Stormlands, Ruled by the Baratheons of Storm’s End:
    EXTINCT, no trueborn male heir.
  • The Kingdom of the Reach, ruled by the Tyrells of Highgarden:
    EXTINCT, no trueborn male heir
  • The Principality of Dorne, ruled by the Martells of Sunspear:
    EXTINCT, no trueborn male heir
  • If Martin and HBO continue on this course, we could see a Westeros that’s completely and utterly different when it comes to leadership.

    Then again, that may be the point.

    For what it’s worth, in Asia the Chinese and Japanese emperors had a wife in addition to legal concubines. Any son born of these women could succeed the emperor — the idea of a “trueborn” son was a lot looser. This allowed the leaders of those dynasties to choose the best among their progeny to rule, and usually, it worked out. Which is why, over about a thousand years, you can count the houses that ruled China on one hand.

    Try doing that for England.

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