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 Locations of the North

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Proteus Stark

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Join date : 2014-07-28

PostSubject: Locations of the North   Thu Jul 31, 2014 2:56 pm


The ancestral castle and seat of power of House Stark and is considered to be the capital of the North. It is located in the center of the northern province of the Seven Kingdoms, on the kingsroad that runs from Storm's End to the Wall. It is situated at the eastern edge of the wolfswood, north of the western branch of the White Knife and Castle Cerwyn. Winterfell is south of the northern mountains and southeast of Long Lake, one hundred leagues (three hundred miles) southeast of Deepwood Motte.

After the sack of Winterfell by Theon Greyjoy and later Ramsay Bolton, much of the castle was destroyed and burnt. But when the Starks were granted their lands by Queen Daenerys, it was rebuilt almost exactly as it was by the surviving Stark children.

Winterfell was supposedly built by Brandon the Builder over eight thousand years ago, with the help of giants. For most of recorded history Winterfell was the seat of House Stark, the Kings in the North and later as Wardens of the North, after King Torrhen Stark bent the knee to Aegon the Conqueror and his dragons. As the regional capital of the North, harvest feasts have been hosted in Winterfell for centuries.

Inside the walls, the complex is composed of dozens of courtyards and small open spaces. Weapons training and practice take place in those yards. The inner ward is a second, much older open space in the castle where archery practice takes place. It is located next to the broken tower. Inside Winterfell stands the Inner Castle, which contains the Great Keep and the Great Hall.
Inner Castle

Inner Castle
The Great Keep is the innermost castle and stronghold of the castle complex. It was built over natural hot springs to keep it warm. Its walls are made of granite. It is connected to the armory by a covered bridge. From a window on the covered bridge, one can see the entire yard.

The Great Hall is used for receiving guests and the place where the household would dine together, including the lord of the house. The Great Hall is very large. On the outside it is enclosed with grey stone and covered with banners, with wide doors made of oak and iron, which opens to the castle yard, whilst a rear exit leads to a dimly-lit gallery. Inside it can hold eight long rows of trestle tables, four to each side of the central aisle, and can seat 500 people. There is a raised platform for noble guests.

The Sept is a small sept built for Catelyn Tully by her husband Lord Eddard Stark.

Courtyard and Misc.
The First Keep, a squat round fortress, is the oldest part of the castle. It is no longer in use. Around it lies a lichyard where the Kings of Winter would lay their loyal servants. The keep has gargoyles atop it.

The Broken Tower, also known as the Burned Tower, was once the tallest watchtower in Winterfell. Over 140 years ago a lightning strike set it afire and the top third collapsed inward, but no one bothered to rebuild it. It stands behind the old inner ward.

The Godswood is an ancient godswood that has stood untouched for 10,000 years, with three acres of old packed earth and close together trees creating a dense canopy, which the castle was raised around. At the center of the grove stands an ancient weirwood with a face carved into it, standing over a pool of black water. Across the godswood from the heart tree, beneath the windows of the Guest House, an underground hot spring feeds three small pools, with a moss covered wall looming above them. The godswood is enclosed by walls, and is accessed by a main iron gate, or smaller wooden ones. Snow shrikes can be seen when the godswood is covered in snow.

The Glass Garden is a greenhouse heated by the hot springs, which turn it into a place of moist warmth. It is used to grow fruits, vegetables and flowers.

The Crypts are where the bones of all of the Kings in the North and ruling lords of Winterfell are buried. The underground crypts are long and narrow, with pillars moving two by two along its length. Between pillars stand the sepulchers of the Starks of Winterfell, the likenesses of the dead seated on thrones, with iron swords set before them to keep the restless spirits from wandering, and snarling direwolves at their feet. The crypts are located deep under the earth, cavernous and bigger than the complex above ground. They are accessed by a twisting stone stair and a huge ironwood door that lies at a slant to the floor. The stair continues below to older levels where the most ancient Kings in the North are entombed.

The Bell Tower is connected to the rookery by a bridge. The bridge is covered and runs from the fourth floor of the tower to the second floor of the rookery.

The Maester's Turret is located below the rookery.

The Library Tower houses the library at Winterfell. A stonework staircase winds about its exterior.

The Guards Hall is in line with the Bell Tower, and further back, the First Keep.

External Walls
Winterfell is a huge castle complex spanning several acres, defended by two massive granite walls with a wide moat between them. The outer wall is eighty feet high, while the inner is one hundred feet high, with a wide moat between them. There are guard turrets on the outer wall and more than thirty watch turrets on the crenelated inner walls.

The main gatehouse is made of two huge crenelated bulwarks which flank the arched gate and drawbridge that opens into the market square. There are three additional gates - the Hunter's Gate directly on the opposite side of the castle, the south gate, and the northern gate. There is a narrow tunnel inside of the inner wall stretching halfway around the castle, allowing travel from the south gate all the way to the northern gate without interruption.

The Hunter's Gate is a gate located close to the kennels and the kitchens. It opens directly onto the open fields and the wolfswood, so people can come and go without having to cross through the winter town. It is favored by hunting parties.

The East Gate is part of the main gatehouse, located on the eastern inner walls. It opens onto the King's Gate located in the outer walls and leads to the kingsroad.

Winter Town
The winter town, so-called because it lies mostly deserted during summer years, is where smallfolk gather in winters. It is located outside the walls of Winterfell. Its market square is filled with wooden stalls for merchants, while its streets are muddy and lined with rows of houses made from log and undressed stone. Less than one in five are occupied during the summer, but they fill up once winter arrives. The kingsroad sits beyond the winter town, which would put it to the east of Winterfell. There is an inn in the winter town.
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Proteus Stark

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PostSubject: The Wall   Thu Jul 31, 2014 3:07 pm

The Wall:

A massive wall over 700 feet high and is made of ice, stretching 300 miles across the northern border of the Seven Kingdoms, separating it from the wild lands beyond. Appearing as one of the nine Wonders Made by Man in the book by Lomas Longstrider, the Wall is defended and held by the Sworn Brothers of the Night's Watch, who patrol and guard the castles from the Frostfangs mountain range in the west to the Bay of Seals in the east.

The Wall was reputedly created over 8,000 years prior to the present setting by Brandon the Builder after the Long Night to defend the realms of man from the wildlings and Others. Approximately 300 miles in length and 700 feet in height, the Wall is protected by the Night's Watch and according to some, ancient spells and sorcery. Supposedly, Brandon the Builder had placed his foundations along the heights wherever possible. Several mentions in the text suggest that the Wall was much smaller at the time, having been built upon by the Night's Watch builders, who quarried huge blocks of ice from frozen lakes in the haunted forest and dragged them south to make the Wall higher, raising it over the centuries to its present size. A total of nineteen fortresses have been built along the Wall though only three, The Shadow Tower, Castle Black and Eastwatch-by-the-Sea are occupied at the start of A Song of Ice and Fire.

The Wall stretches for 300 miles and is approximately 700 feet tall, It is made of solid ice and stone, and can be seen for miles round. It appears grey or blue depending on the weather and time of day. The top is wide enough for a dozen mounted knights to ride abreast and it is thicker at the base. According to myth, there are old spells woven into it, to strengthen it and keep creatures of a magical nature such as the Others from passing it.

The Wall is straight from Castle Black to Eastwatch-by-the-Sea, but runs like a snake between Castle Black and the Shadow Tower.

The Wall has no gates anywhere, simply a few tunnels cut through it that are secured by heavy iron bars and massive chains that must be unlocked. They are sealed with ice and stone wherever castles have been abandoned or in times of danger.

The castles on the Wall, listed from west to east, are:

   The Shadow Tower: the westernmost of the occupied castles
   Sentinel Stand
   Hoarfrost Hill
   The Nightfort
   Deep Lake
   Castle Blackthe: largest maintained castle, located at the northern end of the kingsroad
   Sable Hall
   Long Barrow
   The Torches
   Eastwatch-by-the-Sea: port of the Night's Watch

   Attackers must rely on one of two tactics, a direct assault on one of the few well-defended gates, or scaling the Wall in small groups and attacking a gate from the rear. The gates have been designed with features such as murder holes and limited access that make them difficult to force. In an extreme case, gates can be filled with rock and ice, thus becoming as impervious as any other part of the wall.

   Scaling the Wall involves similar difficulties. A team of determined climbers can reach the top, but only if undetected by defenders, who can easily knock them off with dropped objects or archery. The Wall is thought to "defend itself", disgorging sheets of its own ice.

   According to legend, the Wall is vulnerable to the Horn of Joramun.
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Proteus Stark

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PostSubject: Moat Cailin   Thu Jul 31, 2014 3:11 pm

Moat Cailin:

An ancient stronghold of the First Men on the northern edge of the great swamp known as the Neck, in the North. It is less than twenty miles from the headwaters of the Fever River. It is one of the North's most important strongholds, though much of it now stands in ruins. Its importance stems from the fact that it commands the causeway, which is the safe route for armies to travel through the swamps of the Neck.

Moat Cailin is an effective natural choke point which has protected the North from southern invasion for thousands of years. The only way for an invader to effective bypass Moat Cailin is to win the allegiance of House Reed and the crannogmen who know of other routes through the swamps. These routes, such as narrow trails between the bogs and wet roads through the reeds that only boats can follow, are not on any map. Given the Reeds' strong ancestral ties to House Stark, they are unlikely to aid southerners.

It is claimed that Moat Cailin was raised roughly 10,000 years ago, by the the First Men. It was a great stronghold, with twenty towers and a great basalt curtain wall as high as that of Winterfell's. It used to be a key defence of the north, against which the Andal armies threw themselves time after time with no success.

Today only great blocks of black basalt lay scattered about, half sunk in the ground, where the wall once stood. The wooden keep rotted away a thousand years past and three remaining towers out of a fabled twenty are green with moss.

According to myth, the children of the forest attempted to use Moat Cailin to hold back the flood of invading Andals. When that failed due to the humans superior numbers, the children attempted to shatter the Neck by working powerful magics from the Children's Tower and completely separate the north from the south in the same manner they shattered the Arm of Dorne centuries earlier. The children failed and only succeeded in flooding it, creating bogs and swamps. However, the swampy terrain was enough to prevent the Andals from ever taking Moat Cailin.

In the present era most of Moat Cailin's former towers have fallen into ruin and have not been permanently manned for centuries. However, the three remaining towers are more than capable of defending the passage to the south, provided that they are fully manned.

The remaining three towers command the causeway from all sides and enemies must pass between them. Attackers would have to face constant fire from the other towers should they attempt to attack any one tower, wading through chest deep water and crossing a moat.

The three remaining towers of Moat Cailin are as follows:

Children's Tower is tall and slender. It has only half of the crenelations of its crown. Legend has it that the children of the forest called upon their gods here to send the hammer of the waters to smash the Neck.

Gatehouse Tower is the only tower which still stands straight, even retaining some of the walls around it.

Drunkard's Tower is so named due to its great lean. It stands where the south and west walls once met.
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Proteus Stark

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PostSubject: Minor Locations   Thu Jul 31, 2014 5:34 pm

The Neck: One of the southernmost regions of the North. Covered in swamp and bog, it divides the North from the rest of the Seven Kingdoms. West of the Neck is a large forest and a peninsula containing Flint's Finger, the Flint Cliffs, and Cape Kraken, while to the east is the Bite. North of the Neck are the barrowlands, while to the south are the Twins, Seagard, and the Cape of Eagles in the Riverlands. The Green Fork of the Trident originates in the Neck.

The Neck is inhabited by the crannogmen, who are led by House Reed of Greywater Watch. It contains huge flowers, lizard-lions (alligators) and many snakes. The trees are half-drowned and covered in fungus, and beneath the water, quicksand will drown anyone who attempts to walk the waters. The Neck is considered the key to any assault on the North.

The kingsroad passes through the Neck. Due to the difficult terrain it becomes the causeway, which is the only the safe route to travel through the swamps of the Neck during times of peace. At the northern end of the causeway stand the formidable ruins of Moat Cailin.

Deepwood Motte: The seat of House Glover in the North. It is a wooden motte-and-bailey castle. It lies in the northern wolfswood, east of Sea Dragon Point. North of Deepwood Motte lie tidal flats leading to the Bay of Ice. Deepwood is five leagues south of the sea and one hundred leagues (three hundred miles) northwest of Winterfell.
Deepwood is an old but not particularly strong castle. Its longhall sits on a hill with a flattened top, along with a watchtower rising fifty feet higher, the tallest object this side of the northern mountains. Below the hill is a bailey containing stables, paddock, smithy, well, and sheepfold. They are defended by a ditch, earthen dike, and palisade of logs. Deepwood's mossy outer walls are protected by two square towers and wallwalks. East and west of the castle are fields of oat and barley.

Bear Island: A remote island in the North that is home to House Mormont. It lies within the Bay of Ice north of Deepwood Motte and south of the Frozen Shore. The Mormonts live at Mormont Keep. The island contains old gnarled oaks, tall pines, flowering thornbushes, moss-covered grey stones, and steep hills with streams. Aside from a few crofters, the inhabitants of Bear Island live along the coasts and fish the seas.
Bear Island was ruled by House Woodfoot prior to is conquest by the ironborn. House Hoare, which ruled the Iron Islands at the time, added a green tree in the second quarter of their sigil as a reference to their possession of Bear Island. The island returned to the North during the reign of Rodrik Stark, supposedly as a result of a wrestling match. Rodrik then gave the island to House Mormont.
In days past, ironmen and wildlings from the Frozen Shore would raid Bear Island whilst the men were fishing out at sea, leaving the defense of the island to its women. This created a warrior culture among the women.

Torrhen's Square: A castle in the North and the seat of House Tallhart. It is located south of the wolfswood, southwest of Winterfell, and north of Barrowton, on the northern shore of a large lake. A river from the lake leads south to the Saltspear. Torrhen's Square has stone walls thirty feet high with square towers at each corner. Its square keep is considered strong.

Barrowton: Centered around the large hill Great Barrow, on which was built the Dustins' castle, Barrow Hall. The town itself is wooden and has broad straight streets. House Stout of Goldgrass has a keep near the eastern gate of Barrowton. Outside of the town are rolling plains which the wind howls over. Great Barrow is said to contain the grave of the First King of the First Men or a King of the Giants.
According to a semi-canon source, there may be a cadet branch of the Starks in the town. Brandon Stark was fostered in Barrowton as a youth. Against the wishes of his wife, Lady Barbrey Dustin, Lord Willam Dustin personally led the Barrowton levies during Robert's Rebellion. After he was slain at the tower of joy, Lord Eddard Stark returned Willam's stallion, not his bones, to Barrowton.
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