Into its 7th season now, Game of Thrones has never ceased to amaze us. George R. R. Martin’s genius writing has kept us hooked throughout and the various twists, turns and death have made the show a true-blue phenomenon.
But as Mark Twain once said, Truth is stranger than fiction. And believe it or not, the real world is sometimes far more messed up than the likes of Westeros & Essos.
So here are 8 real-life stories you’ll never believe inspired some of the most talked about plot-points & characters in Game of Thrones:
1. The Lord of Light
The Lord of Light also known as R’hllor is a deity worshipped in GoT universe. Thanks to him, Jon Snow came back to life in the last season. Melisandre has also been chanting his name since the beginning and even sacrificed Shireen in his name.
This faith on the show is strongly influenced by the real life religion of Zoroastrianism. The religion believes in the one true God who is battling all evil. This ancient Persian religion treats fire as sacred and as a medium of spiritual awareness.
Cercei destroyed the Great Sept of Baelor along with half of the population of King’s Landing using Wildfire in last season’s finale. From what we’ve seen on the show, Wildfire is highly volatile and once ignited, it’s almost impossible to control it. During the Battle of the Blackwater, we even saw Wildfire ignited on water!
Greek Fire is probably the inspiration behind Wildfire. Greek Fire was used by the Eastern Roman Empire in the 7th century and was an important naval weapon. It was famous for burning on water but nobody has been able to decipher what it was actually made of.
3. Trial By Combat
A popular way of settling disputes in the GoT world is Trail by Combat. We saw Tyrion escaping Vale because he chose Trial by Combat. But it was because of this method of trial that Oberyn Martell was brutally killed.
Trial by Combat was actually done to settle disputes between two parties during the European middle ages. The party who won the trial was proclaimed to be right. The method slowly disappeared somewhere during the 16th century.
4. The Red Wedding
This particular episode of GoT will go down in television history as one of the most shocking episode of all time. The Starks were the ones we rooted for and their death was too much to handle. They were deceived, fooled & ultimately killed in an elaborate sabotage by the Lannisters.
The inspiration behind this was The Black Dinner. Hosted by the King of Scotland in 1440, The Black Dinner was held to honour the Earl of Douglas. The King guaranteed his safety in the castle but soon presented him the head of a black boar on a plate, which symbolized his death. Needless to say, the Earl was beheaded.
5. The Wall
On the show, The Wall is shown as the end of the civilised world. The ones who exist beyond are shown to living in perpetual danger, also known as The White Walkers. The Wall is covered in spells and is protected by the Night’s Watch.
Martin’s inspiration for this was the Hadrian’s Wall. The Romans built this wall in Britain to separate the Barbarians from the civilised society. Like Castle Black on the show, Hadrian’s Wall also had soldiers stationed at regular intervals.
6. The Lannisters vs The Starks
The Lannisters and the Starks have been at loggerheads with each other since the beginning of the series. Their rivalry was further heightened after Ned Stark’s beheading.
This rivalry was inspired by the 15th century war for the throne between the Yorks and the Lancasters of Britain. The Yorks much like the Starks were northerners and the Lancasters were just as wealthy as the Lannisters.
7. The exile of Daenerys Targaryen
For most of her life, Dany has lived in exile, moving from one place to another with her brother. Soon after the Mad King was killed, Dany and her brother were sent away from Westeros so they could be saved from the wrath of the Lannisters & Baratheons.
The story of Henry VII of England is quite similar. He planned his invasion from France, fought the Lancasters (much like the Lannisters that Dany will be fighting soon) and ultimately won the battle and was crowned as the King.
8. The land of Westeros
By now, we’ve all come to understand the geography of Westeros. With Winterfell in the north, marked by The Wall and the King’s Landing in the south, the geography of this world is pretty much clear.
The map of Westeros though, in real life, has quite a resemblance to the upside down map of England & Ireland.