The Stormlands are one of the constituent regions of the Seven Kingdoms on the continent of Westeros. The Kingdom of the Storm was a sovereign nation until Aegon’s Conquest, in which the last Storm King was slain. The region is so-named for the savage and frequent autumn storms that batter the coast after beginning in the Summer Sea.
The Stormlands are ruled from the castle of Storm’s End by House Baratheon. Notable bannermen of the region include Buckler, Caron, Connington, Dondarrion, Errol, Estermont, Penrose, Selmy, Staedmon, Swann, Tarth, and Wylde. Noble bastards raised in the Stormlands are given the surname Storm.
The Stormlands are bordered to the north by the crownlands, west by the Reach, south by Dorne and the Sea of Dorne, and east by Shipbreaker Bay and the narrow sea. They are one of the smaller regions of Westeros, a land of harsh mountains, stony shores, and verdant forests, including the Kingswood and the Rainwood along with Cape Wrath. Major rivers include the Slayne and part of the Wendwater.
The windswept plains and grasslands of the Dornish Marches, located in the south-west in a long salient along the Red Mountains, serve as an effective buffer zone between the Stormlands and their old enemies of the Reach and Dorne.
A few islands, including Tarth and Estermont, are also considered part of the Stormlands. Ships coming across the narrow sea avoid the notorious Shipbreaker Bay and its storms, though the seas along the Stormlands can be clear and blue. The waters around Tarth are particularly famed for their clear blue color, earning Tarth the name “Sapphire Isle”.
People and Economy
The Stormlands are thinly populated compared to most of the Seven Kingdoms, and their people have a reputation for being stormy like their weather. The province is known for its fierce warriors and sailors, and for moss-covered cottages among its rainy woods and green hills. Many smallfolk in the Stormlands claim descent from a promiscuous Storm King, Ronald Storm.
Although it is rainy, the region is fertile enough. There are no cities in the Stormlands due to the strong martial culture of the storm lords, but larger fortresses such as Bronzegate are often supported by several small towns. The Weeping Town is a thriving port on the Sea of Dorne. The Kingsroad runs north from Storm’s End to King’s Landing in the crownlands.
According to a semi-canon source from 2005, the population of the Stormlands is diffused, and the region can perhaps raise some thirty thousand men.
The Dornish Marches of the Stormlands were the first line of defense against Dornish incursions from the south, so they have strong martial traditions and a number of strong castles, especially the marcher lords. The marcher lords are acclaimed for their bowmen.
During the Dawn Age, the woods of the Stormlands were inhabited by children of the forest, while giants dwelled in the foothills of the Red Mountains. The land was then settled by First Men who came to Westeros across the Arm of Dorne. Deities worshipped by the Stormlanders of antiquity included the sea god and the goddess of the wind. War ensued between the elder races and humans until the Pact. The First Men of old often carved their tales into the wood.
The Stormlands were consolidated by the Storm Kings, House Durrandon of Storm’s End, who were founded by Durran Godsgrief. In time, the Durrandons gained dominion over Cape Wrath and the Rainwood, what would become the Kingswood, Massey’s Hook, and islands in the narrow sea, such as Tarth and Estermont. Storm Kings fought river kings for control of lands north of the Blackwater Rush, and sometimes Storm’s End controlled lands as far as Maidenpool and the Bay of Crabs. The Dornish Marches were created as bulwarks against Dorne to the south and the Kingdom of the Reach to the west.
The Storm Kings defended the Stormlands during the coming of the Andals, but eventually, the First Men intermarried with the Andal newcomers. Himself aided by Andals, Gyles III Gardener, King of the Reach, conquered the lands north of the Rainwood, but he failed to capture Storm’s End after besieging it for two years. King Arlan III Durrandon vanquished the river kings of House Teague, extending the Storm Kings’ domain north to the Neck for three centuries.
Stretched thin by their conquests, the power of the Storm Kings gradually declined due to pressure from House Gardener and Dornishmen. King Arrec Durrandon lost the Riverlands to Harwyn Hardhand, who became King of the Isles and the Rivers, although the Stormlands fended off Harwyn’s son, King Halleck Hoare. The rivermen found the ironborn to be crueler masters than the Stormlanders.
Arrec’s grandson, King Argilac Durrandon, killed King Garse VII Gardener at Summerfield and also fought alongside Pentos and Tyrosh against Volantis during the Century of Blood.
During Aegon’s Conquest, Lords Buckler, House Errol, and Fell fought against House Targaryen’s host at the Wendwater and then retreated into their forests. Rhaenys Targaryen burned the woods with Meraxes, however. King and his Stormlords confronted Orys Baratheon, the half brother of Aegon I Targaryen, near Bronzegate. Orys slew Argilac the Arrogant in the bloody battle known as the Last Storm.
The last Storm King’s lands, titles, sigil, and house words were claimed by Orys, who married Argilac’s daughter, Ariella. King Aegon, I named Orys as Lord Paramount of the Stormlands, and Orys became the first Hand of the King. Traditionally part of the Stormlands, northern Kingswood, and Massey’s Hook became part of the crownlands, a new province sworn to House Targaryen of King’s Landing.
The storm lords participated in the bloody First Dornish War, which saw Cape Wrath raided by Dornishmen and parts of the Rainwood burned. The marcher lords participated in the Second Dornish War against the first Vulture King, and they fended off attacks by the second Vulture King in the Third Dornish War.
King Jaehaerys I Targaryen and Queen Alysanne Targaryen visited the Stormlands while returning to King’s Landing from Oldtown in 54 AC. Morion Martell, Prince of Dorne, desired to conquer the Stormlands as far as Storm’s End, but Jaehaerys crushed the Dornishmen in the Fourth Dornish War.
Prince Lucerys Velaryon was slain by Prince Aemond Targaryen at Storm’s End at the start of the Dance of the Dragons. Lord Burros Baratheon declared for the greens of King Aegon II Targaryen. Instead of fighting the blacks of Queen Rhaenyra Targaryen, however, Burros led a host of six thousand into the Red Mountains to retaliate against the third Vulture King for Dornish raids. After Rhaenyra’s death at Dragonstone, Burros and his Stormlanders secured King’s Landing for the greens and ended the Moon of the Three Kings. They were then defeated by the Lads in the Battle of the Kingsroad.
After Dorne joined the Seven Kingdoms, many storm lords, especially the marcher lords, resented the Dornish presence in the court of King Daeron II Targaryen.
In 206 AC, Lords Caron and Dondarrion suppressed a Vulture King, with the father of Ser Manfred Dondarrion taking nearly four thousand infantry and eight hundred cavalries into the Red Mountains.
Robert’s Rebellion saw House Baratheon raise a rebel alliance against King Aerys II Targaryen, who called for the head of Lord Robert Baratheon. After Robert returned from the Vale of Arryn to call his banners, he defeated recalcitrant bannermen at Summerhall and eventually marched for Ashford. Mace Tyrell, Lord of Highgarden and a Targaryen loyalist, invaded the Stormlands from the Reach. Robert’s middle brother, Stannis Baratheon, defended their family’s seat during the siege of Storm’s End, and Davos smuggled food past the Redwyne fleet to aid Stannis’s garrison.
Robert claimed the Iron Throne, forming the royal House Baratheon of King’s Landing, after the deaths of Prince Rhaegar Targaryen, killed in the Battle of the Trident, and King Aerys, betrayed by Ser Jaime Lannister during the Sack of King’s Landing. The siege of Storm’s End was lifted when Lord Tyrell knelt to Robert’s friend, Lord Eddard Stark. Stannis then led the assault on Dragonstone and was given that castle by Robert, although Stannis resents that their youngest brother, Renly, eventually succeeded Robert as Lord of Storm’s End.