If you’re among the few unfortunate ones who still haven’t watched Game of Thrones, I honestly don’t know what you are doing with your life. And I hope the answer is not “rewatching Friends”. The successful TV series is based on George R. R. Martin’s books, which are a real literary gem. This top 10 Game of Thrones illustrations proves that both the books and the series have everything they need to appeal to everyone: various sorts of love and hate, conspiracies, battles for power, intrigues and vengeful, scornful people. While the show took on a life of its own, to the disappointment of the books’ fans, Westeros remains one of the coolest fictional places in literary history.
1. The Black Dread
Also known as Balerion, this was the biggest dragon owned by the Targaryens. He is described to have had huge teeth that resembled swords. His scales were black , just like his fire and when he flew above towns, these would be overshadowed by his huge wingspan. The Black Dread helped Aegon I Targaryen conquer a large chunk of Westeros and he died of old age when he was over 200 years old.
2. Robert Baratheon at the Siege of Pyke
Estimated to have taken place about 9 years before Game of Throne started, The Siege of Pyke ended the Greyjoy rebellion when the castle of the Greyjoys was overtaken by King Baratheon’s army. The Greyjoy Household reblled against the Iron Throne, with Balon Geryjoy trying to separate from the Seven Kingdoms.
3. The Iron Throne
Probably the most mis-represented thing in the book, the Iron Throne was described by George R. R. Martin to be made of a tangled mass of knives, swords and blades, and not at all comfortable to sit on. The Throne had been made by Aegon the Conqueror from his enemies’ weapons, merged together with dragon fire.
4. The mud gate
This is a gate that opens in King’s Landing, making the connection with the shore of Blackwater bay. As the Hand of the Kind, Tyrion Lannister prepared the defense of King’s Landing and predicted that Stannis Baratheon’s attack will focus on the Mud Gate which was the city’s weakest spot. Leading the counter attack, Tyrion encouraged his fighters by shouting “”hose are brave men knocking at our door, let’s go kill them!”
5. Ruby Ford
This crossing got its name after the rubies that fell from Rhaegar Targaryen’s breastplate. The Battle of the Trident was decisive in Robert Baratheon’s rebellion, during which he dethroned House Targaryen, helped by Eddard Stark and Jon Arryn. The rebels were victorious and Robert Baratheon became the king of the Seven Kingdoms.
6. The Fighting pits of Meereen
The circulars arenas in Astapor, Yunkai and Meereen were meant to entertain the audiences with deadly fights. The biggest one of the three was in Meereen, called Daznak’s Pit, where the public could watch wild animals fight not only each other, but also gladiators. The latter weren’t allowed to wear armor and were forced to fight until only one man was still standing in the pit.
7. Aemon Targaryen’s “I dreamed I was old”
Maester Aemon Targaryen was one of Lord Commander Mormomt’s closest confidantes. As the last Targaryen in Westeros, he was the great uncle of Daenerys, he was very wise, gentle and humble. He refused to sit the Iron Throne, preferring instead to leave his younger brother rule the kingdoms as he went to live on the Wall. His last words, “I dreamed that I was old…” are only uttered in the TV series when he dies in Castle Black.
8. The Red Viper vs. The Mountain
With the Red Viper accepting to fight for Tyrion in the eight episode of season 4, everyone was biting their nails in expectation. Oberyn’s impressive spear maneuvers pointed at him as being the certain winner of the duel. He sprinkled his quick attacks on Ser Gregor by reminding him how he killed his sister and her children. But one mistake cost the Red Viper his life and The Mountain ended the epic battle by crashing his opponent’s skull.
9. Escape from Harrenhall
Arya Stark plays an important role in the Harrenhall episode in the books. She seems fearless and doesn’t shy away from killing a Bolton soldier when she’s escaping from Harrenhall. Her ultimate goal is to find her mother and brother, believing that only then she’ll be safe.
10. Lady Stoneheart
After Catelyn Stark is killed at the Red Wedding, she is resurrected by Beric Dondarrion. Not only her name changes, but also her appearance and attitude: she is vengeful, quick to hang anyone she dislikes and her skin now looks like curdled milk.