Why is Tywin Lannister so powerful

House Lannister

Surrounded by Lannisters. Every time I close my eyes, I see their blonde hair and their smug faces.

House Lannister von Casterlystein

House Lannister of Casterly Rock


Coat of arms:

A soaring, golden lion on a red background


"Hear me roar!" (officially)
"A Lannister always pays his debt." (unofficially)

Family branch:

House Lannister by Lennishort


  • about 10,000 men (mostly destroyed by Targaryen troops or defected to Queen Daenerys)
House Lannister von Casterlystein (in the original: House Lannister of Casterly Rock) is one of the great houses of Westeros. It is one of the richest, most powerful and oldest dynasties. Their lands are in the far west of the continent, with gold mines that were once very productive. Your seat is Casterlystein, a mighty fortress on a rocky outcrop overlooking the sea at dusk. At the foot of Casterlystein lies Lennishort, the third largest city in Westeros. They are the rulers of the western lands and guardians of the west. Head of the house and Lord of Casterlystein was Tywin Lannister.

The coat of arms of the house shows a soaring golden lion on a red background.[1] Their official motto is: "Hear me roar!", Which is rarely mentioned.[2] More widespread is their unofficial motto "A Lannister always pays his debt", which can be used in both a positive and a negative context.

The incestuous relationship between Cersei and Jaime Lannister was hidden by a conspiracy. Their son Joffrey Baratheon ascended the Iron Throne as the alleged son and heir of the late King Robert Baratheon, followed by his brother Tommen. Lord Tywin is one of the main supporters of his rule in the War of the Five Kings.

Another unofficial motto is "Rich like a Lannister", as this is the wealthiest of all the great houses and, next to the Bank of Bravos, is the greatest believer in the Iron Throne.

The wealth goes back to rich gold mines below the castle of Casterlystein. The mines dried up three years before Tywin's Lannister died, but he cleverly hid it and only let his daughter Cersei know about it. Also that the Lannisters are now debtors of the Iron Bank of Bravos.

In the series


With the typical attributes of the Lannisters - blond, tall and stately - the members of the house are descendants of the Andals, who once established a powerful kingdom in the western hills and valleys. But they trace their origins back to Lenn the Cunning, a legendary impostor in the age of heroes who stole Casterlystein from their former masters. As Kings of the Stone, the Lannisters ruled the Western Lands before surrendering to House Targaryen.

Their last king was Loren Lannister, who together with the last king of the expanse, Mern Gärtner, gathered 60,000 soldiers to face Aegon the conqueror. They were defeated in the field of fire by Aegons and his sisters and lost 4,000 men in the process. Since then they served the House of Targaryen and later King Robert Baratheon as rulers of the western lands and guardians of the west. The gold from the mines of Casterlystein and those of Goldzahn made House Lannister the richest of the great houses.[3]

A period of decline began at the time of Lord Titos Lannister, the father and predecessor of Tywin. He wasted his fortune on bad investments and allowed himself to be mocked at his court, which was seen as a sign of weakness. A vassal of the Lannisters, the House of Regn of Castamaer, rebelled against Lord Titos. Tywin personally suppressed the rebellion and wiped out their house completely, thereby restoring the dreaded reputation of the Lannister house. His ruthlessness gave the saying “A Lannister always pays his debt” a darker meaning and was immortalized in the song “The Rain of Castamaer”.[4]

Tywin's children are the twins Cersei and Jaime and the younger brother Tyrion, at whose birth Tywin's wife Joanna Lannister died. Tyrion is short and has a difficult relationship with Tywin. Cersei became Queen of Westeros because Tywin - as a token of solidarity through his support in Robert's Rebellion - arranged her marriage to King Robert Baratheon. She has a longstanding incestuous relationship with her brother Jaime. Both hid their relationship and had their children, Joffrey, Myrcella and Tommen, who were born after Cersei's marriage and are considered the children of King Robert.


The House of Lannister can raise an army of around 60,000 men relatively quickly.[5] With their immense wealth, the Lannister forces are among the best-equipped troops in the Seven Kingdoms, although House Tyrell can field far larger armies. During the War of the Five Kings, the army continued to decline due to the fighting against Robb Stark in the river lands. These included the smashing of 30,000 men in the Battle of Whisper Forest and the Siege of Schnellwasser, commanded by Ser Jaime Lannister. Later, during Robb Stark's campaign in the West Lands at the Battle of Ochsenfurt, the levy under Ser Steffert Lannister was stopped.[6] Other men also died in the battle of the Schwarzwasser.[7] During the Second Siege of Schnellwasser, Ser Jaime led a force of only 8,000 men into the field. However, this could be part of a larger Lannister army.[8] There were 10,000 men on Casterlystein, they were withdrawn and went into the field when Rosengarten was captured, later they fought in the Battle of the Goldweg.[9][10]

In addition to the army, the Lannisters also have a modest fleet in Lennishort, which was once destroyed in a preemptive strike by the brothers von Balon Greyjoy during the Greyjoy Rebellion.[11]

The usual Lannister soldier wears armor in purple, black and gold with a red cape, which is why they are also called "red coats". The armor consists of a black helmet with gold decorations and a gold crest running across the helmet. The visor, which is also decorated in gold, can be opened to the side. A collar is sparse or nonexistent. The breastplate and armpit pieces are red and have horizontal stripes. The arm and the thigh cover have gold decorated metal plates. A petticoat is worn under the armor and black leather is worn for further protection.

Light infantry is equipped as standard with a sword and an infantry shield, which adorns the Lannister lion. The light infantry, which only wears leather armor, is often only used in war and consists of drafted men. The heavy infantry wears sword and infantry shield as standard, but also spear and long shield if necessary. Their armor also has a crimson cloak in contrast to the light infantry. Heavy infantry is the main constituent part of the army in peacetime and consists largely of professional soldiers. The cavalry does not differ from the infantry in terms of general equipment, but is far fewer in number.[Document is missing]

The archers wear the same leather armor as the light infantry and also wear a special light helmet.

Commanders, commanders or members of the house wear armor that is richly decorated and indicates their status. These include a gold collar, which is usually decorated with the heraldic animals of the house; the armpits, each with a golden lion head, contain arm tiles as additional protection.[5][12]

Advancing within the army is almost impossible for followers of the common people, as most officers and commanders come from noble families. Exceptions are mercenaries who excel.

In the books

In the saga The Song of Ice and Fire House Lannister von Casterlystein is one of the great houses of the Seven Kingdoms and the ruling house of the Western Lands. Your seat is Casterlystein. However, there is another family branch near Lennishort. Your coat of arms shows a golden lion on a purple background. Its official motto is: “Hear me roar!”. No less well known is her unofficial motto "A Lannister always pays his debt." The Lannisters ruled as kings of the stone until the Targaryen conquest, but were allowed as lords to continue to rule the western lands. House power fell during the reign of Titos Lannister, but was fully restored by his son and heir, Tywin Lannister. Due to the abundant gold mines in their territory, the Lannister family is the richest family in the Seven Kingdoms, but the rather impassable mountains are by no means the largest empire. Members of the house usually stand out for physical attributes such as golden hair and emerald green eyes.


The Lannisters are descendants of the Andalusian conquerors who married the daughters of the King of the Stone. The king himself was descended from Lenn the Sly, a legendary cheater from the Age of Heroes who had set the Casterlys and thereby obtained Casterly stone. The Lannisters ruled as kings from stone to the conquest by the Targaryens. After the battle in the Field of Fire, King Loren I surrendered and his house was allowed to rule the western lands as feudal lords, guardians of the west. The Lannisters are the richest family in the Seven Kingdoms, which is largely due to the many gold mines in their territory. The Lannister family once owned Lichtbrüller, an ancestral sword made of Valyrian steel, but this has long been lost.

During the Black Fire Rebellion, Lord Damon Lannister remained loyal to House Targaryen. The great rebel general Ser Quentin Ball defeated him outside the gates of Lennishort.

Later, during the reign of Titos Lannister, the house experienced its worst crisis. Due to Tito's weakness, the house was mocked by its own vassals. It was, after all, Tito's son Tywin Lannister who brought the idiosyncratic vassals under control and restored power to his family. Soon after, Tywin was appointed to the hand of the king by King Aerys II and held the position for many years. Tywin tried to resolve Aerys' hostage-taking by Denys Finsterlyn through negotiations that dragged on for six months. This increased Aerys paranoia and worsened their relationship, at the same time Aerys desired the wife of Tywin, his cousin and confidante Joanna. Tywin was never an emotional person, but when Joanna died giving birth to their third child, Tyrion, he was in mourning and his brother Kevan became his right-hand man. Her sister Genna became a surrogate mother for the children. His second brother, Tygett, died of smallpox and another brother, Gerion, sailed to Valyria and was never seen again.

Despite Tywin's attempt to leave a powerful legacy, the reality on Casterlystein was detrimental to his legacy. Twins Jaime and Cersei began an incestuous relationship at an early age. As a young girl, Cersei visited the forest witch Maggy the Frog, who saw the harbingers of her future, which was the origin of Cersei's paranoia. She murdered her friend who witnessed the prophecy. Tyrion was traveling with his brother Jaime at the age of 13 when he met a girl named Tysha, whom he promptly married. A game that Lord Tywin ended quickly and brutally. Jaime was a promising young knight, trained by Ser Arthur Dayn. Tywin was devastated when Jaime joined the Aerys Kings Guard. After this event, which Tywin saw as the theft of his inheritance by the Mad King, Tywin resigned from his office as a hand. Cersei's refusal to marry Crown Prince Rhaegar thwarted Jaime's hopes of being closer to her, for he was in King's Landing and Cersei returned to Casterlystein.

During Robert's rebellion, the Lannisters remained neutral for most of the conflict. Only after the defeat of Prince Rhaegar in the Battle of Trident did Lord Tywin join the rebels under Robert Baratheon against the Targaryen rule. Tywin marched with his army to King's Landing and Aerys opened the gates for him on the advice of Grand Maester Pycelles (a secret Lannister loyalist). During the ensuing sack of King's Landing, Jaime, still a member of the Kingsguard, Aerys II, slew the last king of House Targaryen. Meanwhile, Ser Gregor Clegane killed the rest of the royal family who were in the capital to show his commitment to Robert's cause. Thereafter, Tywin's daughter Cersei was married to the newly appointed King Robert. That marriage, and the increasing amount of gold Robert owed the Lannisters, increased Tywin's and his family's influence immensely. Much of Tywin's attention is directed to the family, with all of his relatives doing their part in honoring the house's name.

A Game of Thrones

Unbeknownst to most people, Lord Tywin's twins, Queen Cersei and Ser Jaime, had an incestuous love affair. All three royal children allegedly fathered by King Robert are actually from Jaime. Lord Eddard Stark and his wife Catelyn suspect that the Lannisters had Eddard's predecessor murdered as the hand of the king, Lord Jon Arryn, and also tried to kill their son Bran. Indeed, the latter was true because the boy witnessed the incest.

Lady Catelyn had Tyrion Lannister arrested at an inn to be brought to justice, prompting Lord Tywin to dispatch a unit of raiders to the Tully lands, thereby luring Lord Stark into the field in the hope of holding him hostage seize and offer for exchange. However, Eddard is ambushed in the streets of King's Landing and injured in a duel with Ser Jaime, which is why he sends other men.

Tyrion is released at his own request, but the war continues, as does the intrigues in the capital where Eddard von Cersei was imprisoned. Tywin and Jaime win several victories over the River Lords, but the Tullys are soon joined by a host of Northmen by Eddard's son Robb. Robb formed a Stark army under the command of Lord Roose Bolton in the Battle of the Green Arm, but that force turned out to be a ruse to distract Tywin while Robb snapped the siege of Schnellwasser and captured Jaime in the process .

In the meantime, Cersei feared for her children, since Eddard informed Robert of the true fatherhood. She ordered her cousin Lancel Lannister, Roberts Squire, to refill the king with plenty of strong wine during a wild boar hunt, which caused Robert fatal injuries.

After that, Cersei and Jaime's son, Joffrey, ascended the throne and had Lord Stark executed, which precluded any possibility of peace. Jaime, in spite of his absence, was appointed the new Lord Commander of the Kings Guard. Tywin, after receiving the post of hand, dispatched Tyrion in his place to continue the war in the Riverlands. Meanwhile, Robert's brothers Stannis and Renly also laid claim to the throne, denying Joffrey's legality. So began the War of the Five Kings.

A clash of kings

Tyrion and Cersei competed for influence in King's Landing, Tyrion succeeding in outmaneuvering his sister. Desperate for allies, he planned an alliance with House Martell. Part of the agreement was the engagement between Princess Myrcella and Trystan Martell. As their ship leaves port, the royal family is harassed in the King's Landing revolt provoked by Joffrey. Jaime was imprisoned in Schnellwasser's dungeon. Several attempts at liberation failed. Meanwhile, Cersei replaced his place in her bed with her cousin Ser Lancel Lannister. With the invasion of the Stark Army in the West, Tywin marched with his army from Harrenhal towards his homelands, but was prevented from doing so by Ser Edmure Tully in the Battle of the Fords. As a result, King Robb succeeded in destroying a third force from the west under Ser Steffert Lannister in the battle of Ochsenfurt. Tywin was close enough to King's Landing to defend the city from the impending attack by Stannis. With Tywin's presence, Tyrion's defenses, and the new alliance with House Tyrell, the Lannisters are able to repel Stannis' attack in the Battle of Blackwater. And this despite the threat of defeat for the golden coats when Cersei ordered King Joffrey to leave the walls. Most of Stannis' vassals declared their loyalty to Joffrey. The rule was actually exercised by Lord Tywin.In the meantime, Catelyn Stark had learned of the alleged death of two of her sons, who were in the hands of the traitor Theon Greyjoy. She released Jaime from captivity in order to receive her daughters Sansa and Arya in a secret exchange. It had been successfully kept secret that Arya had long since left King's Landing.


The following supporters of the House of Lannister are mentioned in the series "Game of Thrones":


  • Lord {Tywin Lannister}, smashed the Regn Rebellion, shot by his son Tyrion Lannister.
    • Queen {Cersei Lannister}, Tywin's daughter and widow of the late King Robert Baratheon, died in the Battle of King's Landing.
    • Ser {Jaime Lannister}, Tywin's eldest son and former King's Guard, was nicknamed Kingslayer, died in the Battle of King's Landing.
    • Tyrion Lannister, Tywin's youngest son, called the Gnome, hand of Queen Daenerys Targaryen.
  • Ser {Kevan Lannister}, Tywin's younger brother and married to Dorna Swyft, died in the destruction of the Septe of Baelor.
    • Ser {Lancel Lannister}, Kevan's eldest son and heir, and squire to Robert Baratheon. Later knighted, later joined the Faith, died in the destruction of the Septe of Baelor.