Name day

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A name day is the Westerosi equivalent to a birthday.

Culture

The day a child is born, he or she is also given a name that day, so a person's age is counted with their name day as the start.[1] The only exception is free folk births, as they consider it bad luck to name their children before the age of two.[2]

In the Faith of the Seven, newborns are named in a sept and anointed with the seven oils.[1] Newborn children among the ironborn may be drowned on their name day.[3]

A person celebrating their name day may receive gifts from friends and family, and a feast may be held for them.[4][5][6] A tourney may be held to celebrate a prince or king or noble's name day.[7][8][6][9][10]

In Westeros, a person reaches their age of majority on their sixteenth name day, after which they are considered "a man grown" or "a woman grown".[11][12]

There are expressions such as "naked as his/her name day"[13][14] and "wearing their name day suits"[15] or "in her name day gown".[16] The latter two phrases are the equivalent of the real-world expression "birthday suit", meaning wearing no clothes at all.[17]

There is a song called "The Name Day Boy".[18]

Recent Events

A Game of Thrones

On her fourteenth name day, Daenerys Targaryen realizes she is pregnant by her husband, Khal Drogo.[19]

Lord Walder Frey marries his eighth wife, Joyeuse Erenford, on his ninetieth name day.[20]

A Clash of Kings

Sansa Stark claims that it is bad luck to kill a man on your name day, to prevent King Joffrey Baratheon from executing Ser Dontos Hollard at the tourney for his thirteenth name day. She believes she made up the custom, and is surprised to hear the Kingsguard Sandor Clegane support the claim.[6]

Quotes

I'll be fifteen on my name day. Almost a man grown.[21]

My brother Jaime gave me that mare for my twenty-third name day.[4]

What a man sows on his name day, he reaps throughout the year.[6]

I'd have them all put to death, only it's my name day.[6]

I am not the frightened girl you met in Pentos. I have counted only fifteen name days, true... but I am as old as the crones in the dosh khaleen and as young as my dragons, Jorah.[22]

The bathhouse had been thick with the steam rising off the water, and Jaime had come walking through that mist naked as his name day, looking half a corpse and half a god.[23]

—thoughts of Brienne of Tarth

See also

  • Customs, for additional information on customs and traditions of Westeros.

References