The Nights Watch protects the Seven Kingdoms from wildlings, giants and white walkers from its castles along a giant ice wall. The wall is 700 feet tall and 300 miles long. It's current commander is Jon Snow who leads from Castle Black. Castle Black in the middle of the wall, the Shadow Tower is at the western end, and their port Eastwatch-by-the-Sea at the eastern end. These are the only occupied castles - there are 19 in total.
The Watch is divided into three groups - Rangers, Builders and Stewards. Wandering Crows travel the 7 kingdoms searching for members to join the order. They have no Heraldic Symbol as such - just the colour black - flags, banners, shields, clothing are all black. This is why they are referred to as Crows. The Watch was founded around 8000 years ago and have no political leanings preferring to stay neutral.
Members of the Night's Watch swear an oath that prohibits marriage, family, and land ownership. All past allegiances and birthrights are renounced and past crimes are absolved. Night's Watch vows are meant to be for life but a ruling monarch can approve a brother leaving the watch. Members of the Night's Watch are not forbidden from seeing their families but they need permission first. Desertion is punishable by death.
Notable Members of the Nights Watch:-
Aemon Targaryen - He began training as a maester at age 10 during the reign of his uncle Aerys I. When he received his maesters chain his father Maekar was then King and his father wanted him to join the small council, he declined because he didn't want to clash with Grand Maester and went to serve on Dragonstone instead. When he was 35 his father died and because his older brothers were also dead he was offered the throne. He declined and joined the nights watch and the throne went to his younger brother Aegon (great grandfather of the mad King Aerys II). When Jon Snow joined Aemon had been at the wall for 65 years.
Benjen Stark - is the youngest of Eddard Starks siblings. Benjen joined the Nights Watch and moved up the ranks to First Ranger. He was dispatched by Jeor Mormont to search for missing Ranger Ser Waymar Royce and to collect information about King Beyond the Wall Mance Rayder. He disappeared and was not seen again. His horse returns alone and members of his team were found dead but when re-animated later as wights.
Jeor Mormont known as the Old Bear, led the house of Mormont under Eddard Stark during the rebellion of Robert Baratheon. He abdicated his lordship six years later to join the Night Watch. He rose through the ranks and served as Lord Commander for around 10 years. The bodies of two ranger members of Benjen Starks parties were found and bought back to Castle Black for inspection. They re-animated as wights and Jon and Ghost saved Jeor Mormont from their attack. As repayment Jeor gave John Snow his Valyrian sword Longclaw which he had regained when his son Jorah fled to the free cities. Jeor was murdered at Crasters keep by Ollo Lophand during a great ranging beyond the wall to investigate Mance Rayder, the dead re-animating and rumours of white walkers. He tells Samwise Tarly that his dying wish is to forgive Jorah and to let him come back and take the black.
Jon Snow - Jon is the alleged bastard son of Eddard Stark. After Robert Baratheon visits Winterfell to convince Eddard to become his hand, Jon is inspired by his visiting uncle Benjen Stark to join the NIghts Watch. Benjen counsils Jon to wait and join later but Jon insists on joining straight away. Jon takes his albino direwolf Ghost with him to the wall. Just like his little brother Bran, Jon is a warg and is capable of controlling Ghost and has prophetic dreams. Jon's first appointment in the NIghts Watch is as Jeor Mormonts personal steward.
|Nights Watch Sigil|
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