George R.R. Martin Explains How The Game Of Thrones Got Started

We can't know who will end up sitting on the Iron Throne at the end of George R.R. Martin's book and television saga — but now, Martin is showing us more of how the first King got to sit on that pointy seat of power. Martin has released a samplefrom The World of Ice and Fire, his guide to Westeros.

Top image: Aegon on Black Dread by J. Gonzalez

The excerpt deals with Aegon the Conqueror and his conquest of Westeros, and particularly with all the fools who didn't just roll over when Aegon decided to unite the Seven Kingdoms under his rule. Here's a taste:

The Westeros of Aegon's youth was divided into seven quarrelsome kingdoms, and there was hardly a time when two or three of these kingdoms were not at war with one another. The vast, cold, stony North was ruled by the Starks of Winterfell. In the deserts of Dorne, the Martell princes held sway. The gold-rich westerlands were ruled by the Lannisters of Casterly Rock, the fertile Reach by the Gardeners of Highgarden. The Vale, the Fingers, and the Mountains of the Moon belonged to House Arryn . . . but the most belligerent kings of Aegon's time were the two whose realms lay closest to Dragonstone, Harren the Black and Argilac the Arrogant.

Who do you think turned out to be more trouble? Harren the Black or Argilac the Arrogant? Find out more over at Martin's website, and even more when the book comes out in October.