House Butterwell

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House Butterwell
House Butterwell.svg
Coat of arms Undy green, white, and yellow
(Barry wavy vert, argent, and or)
Seat Whitewalls (formerly)
Head Unknown
Region The riverlands
Title Lord of Whitewalls (formerly)

House Butterwell is a noble house of the riverlands. Their blazon is undy green, white, and yellow.[1][2]

House Butterwell was once a rich house with extensive lands, though its main incomes came from dairy cows,[1] prompting some to dismiss their origins as little more than upjumped cattle thieves,[1] and once had a castle called Whitewalls. House Butterwell was said to have had the best wines outside of the Arbor.


After King Maegor I Targaryen exterminated House Harroway in 44 AC, he divided the Harroway holdings among his remaining supporters. The king granted Lord Harroway's Town to Lord Alton Butterwell, Harrenhal to Lord Walton Towers, and the rest of the Harroway holdings to Lord Darnold Darry.[3] When Maegor decided to take more wives as he needed an heir, Alton, the king's master of coin, suggested his widowed stout sister as a match, who while no great beauty had given birth to seven children so her fertility was beyond doubt. Maegor was scornful of Alton's offer, but remembering his words he eventually chose women of proven fertility when he wed three new brides in 47 AC.[3]

During the Dance of the Dragons, Lord Butterwell initially supported Princess Rhaenyra Targaryen's claim to the Iron Throne and declared for the blacks. He was captured and sent to the Red Keep's dungeons. When he was faced with the choice between swearing fealty to Aegon II Targaryen or death, Lord Butterwell chose to defect to the greens.[4]

Lord Butterwell was Hand of the King to Aegon IV Targaryen. King Aegon stayed one night at Butterwell's castle,[1] and gave his Hand a dragon egg in return for "access" to his three maiden daughters.[1][5] By the next day all three girls had royal bastards on the way, according to the tales.[1] He had Whitewalls built, the pale castle was commonly called the Milkhouse by the smallfolk who lived near it. Its walls, keep, and towers were made of white stone quarried in the Vale of Arryn, and its floors and pillars were crafted from white marble veined with gold. The rafters were carved from the trunks of weirwoods.[1]

His grandson, Lord Ambrose Butterwell was a master of coin under King Aegon IV Targaryen[1] and was also later a Hand of the King, for Daeron II Targaryen.[6][1][7] At the beginning of the First Blackfyre Rebellion, he performed so poorly that some thought he was in league with Daemon Blackfyre.[6][7] He was replaced by Lord Hayford as Hand.[6][7]

The Butterwells attempted to keep one foot in each camp during the First Blackfyre Rebellion.[1] Lord Ambrose's eldest son fought for Daeron while his second son fought for Daemon, but both sons died at the Battle of the Redgrass Field. His youngest son died of the Great Spring Sickness.[1]

In 212 AC, Lord Ambrose held a wedding tourney at Whitewalls, for a marriage between himself and Lord Frey's daughter, which became the setting for the Second Blackfyre Rebellion. As punishment, Lord Bloodraven allowed Ambrose to keep only a tenth of his wealth. Whitewalls was stripped from the Butterwells, and Bloodraven decided to have it dismantled to prevent it from becoming a Blackfyre monument.[1]

House Butterwell at the end of the third century

The known Butterwells during the timespan of the events described in A Song of Ice and Fire are:

  • No member has appeared yet.

Historical Members

Aegon IV
Lady Frey
first wife
Three sons
Lord Risley


  1. 1.00 1.01 1.02 1.03 1.04 1.05 1.06 1.07 1.08 1.09 1.10 1.11 1.12 1.13 1.14 1.15 1.16 The Mystery Knight.
  2. The Citadel. Heraldry: Houses in the Riverlands
  3. 3.0 3.1 3.2 3.3 The Sons of the Dragon.
  4. 4.0 4.1 Fire & Blood, The Dying of the Dragons - The Red Dragon and the Gold.
  5. 5.0 5.1 The World of Ice & Fire, The Targaryen Kings: Aegon IV.
  6. 6.0 6.1 6.2 6.3 The Sworn Sword.
  7. 7.0 7.1 7.2 7.3 The World of Ice & Fire, The Targaryen Kings: Aerys I.
  8. 8.0 8.1 Fire & Blood, The Sons of the Dragon.
  9. Fire & Blood, The Long Reign - Jaehaerys and Alysanne: Policy, Progeny, and Pain.