Jamie Adair

Jamie Adair is the editor of History Behind Game of Thrones, a website about the history behind George RR Martin's "A Song of Ice and Fire" novels and the hit TV show, "Game of Thrones."

Catelyn Stark: The Heart of Game of Thrones

At the emotional center of Game of Thrones, you’ll find Catelyn Stark. Trying desperately to hold her family together after her husband died, Catelyn represents toughness, ferocity, and love. House Tully’s words are “Family, Duty, Honor.” Quite possibly, George RR Martin loosely based Catelyn on Edward IV’s proud and passionate mother who repeatedly struggled to save her children during the turbulent Wars of the Roses. Like Catelyn, Cecily was once a great beauty. Contemporaries called Cecily “the Rose of Raby” after the…

Read More

Favorite Game of Thrones Character Poll Results

Sorry these poll results have taken so long to post. When I first looked at the poll, it had only gotten an embarrassing six votes so I kind of gave up on it. But, I thought I’d better check again today and noticed that 96 people have answered – I’m thrilled. Thanks! It was great and really cool to see what characters people like. I have to admit I love Arya and Tyrion. However, there are so many great characters…

Read More

Game of Thrones Recap: Season 3, Episode 8

Tonight’s episode of Game of Thrones (Season 3, Episode 8 “Second Sons”) had three major events: Gendry’s disgusting leeching, Daenerys’ near assassination by the dashing sellsword Dario Naharis, and Sansa’s marriage to Tyrion. For the purpose of peering into the history behind this Game of Thrones episode, this post focuses on the Tyrion’s marriage. Tyrion’s noble behavior at the wedding feast reveals how he towers over the peers who laughed at him hours earlier as he struggled to put the…

Read More

The Seriousness of Arranged Marriages: No Jane Austen Novel

Episodes: “The Bear and the Maiden Fair,” Season 3, Episode 7 As Season 3 winds up, arranged marriages are becoming an incredibly important theme. Tywin Lannister wants to marry Tyrion to Sansa Stark and prevent the Tyrells from becoming Lord in the North. Robb Stark pleaded with his uncle to marry Lord Frey’s daughter so he can regain the lord’s military support. In the HBO interactive features from this week’s Game of Thrones, George RR Martin talks about the political importance…

Read More

More on Cersei and Elizabeth Woodville

This post continues from my previous post on Elizabeth Woodville and Cersei Lannister. Elizabeth, like Cersei, had her share of sorrows. Elizabeth was the mother of twelve children, including the heir to the throne, the blonde-haired Prince Edward.  After Edward IV died, his brother Richard (later Richard III) effectively kidnapped Prince Edward and imprisoned him in the Tower along with his brother. Neither boy was ever seen again. While Elizabeth experienced grief, she also shared in the moral ambiguity seen…

Read More

Cersei Lannister: The Evil Queen We Love to Hate

Tyrion: “You love your children. It’s your one redeeming quality; that and your cheekbones.” Episodes: Season 3, Episode 6 “The Climb”;  Season 2, Episode 1, “The North Remembers” In tonight’s episode of Game of Thrones, I almost found myself warming up to Cersei a little bit. Her son is a monster she can’t control and her father was forcing her to marry another man who will never be interested in her. However, I suspect my compassion for the evil queen won’t…

Read More

Trial by Ordeal, Combat, and the Hound’s Fight

Episode: Season 3, Episode 5 “Kissed by Fire” In last night’s episode, “Kissed by Fire,” the Hound is accused of murder and the red priest sentences him to trial by combat. If the Hound kills his combatant, it means the Lord of Light deemed him innocent. However, for the Hound to save his own life, he must face his greatest fear, fire. By pitting the Hound against a flaming sword, George RR Martin combines both trial by combat and trial…

Read More

Daenerys as Henry VII

After seeing the phenomenal ending of this week’s Game of Thrones episode (“And Now His Watch is Ended” Season 3, Episode 4), I find myself wondering once again if Daenerys Targaryen is an incarnation of Henry VII? Henry VII, founder of the Tudor dynasty and father of Henry VIII, was the unlikeliest conqueror when his soldiers slew Richard III and Henry overthrew the Yorkist dynasty. Through his Lancastrian mother, Henry Tudor had a watery claim to the throne. After somebody, possibly…

Read More

Hidden as a Scullion Maid

Episode 3, Season 2 “What is Dead May Never Die” at 19:41 “Every man who has ever tasted my cooking tells me what a good whore I am.” – Shae In the Game of Thrones, when Tyrion wants to hide Shae, his <ahem> courtesan, to protect her from Cersei, Shae refuses, stating flatly, “I am not a kitchen wench.” Tyrion rethinks and arranges for her to become Sansa’s handmaiden instead. However, in the past, lords have hidden women far higher born than…

Read More