Jon Snow (A Song of Ice and Fire)
|A Song of Ice and Fire character|
|First appearance||A Game of Thrones|
|Created by||George RR Martin|
|Portrayed by||Kit Harington (Game of Thrones)|
|Occupation||Lord Commander of the Watch|
|Family||Lord Eddard Stark (father, deceased)
Robb Stark (paternal half-brother, deceased)
Sansa Stark (paternal half-sister)
Arya Stark (paternal half-sister)
Bran Stark (paternal half-brother)
Rickon Stark (paternal half-brother)
Jon Snow is a fictional character created by American author George RR Martin. He is a prominent point of view character in Martin's award-winning Song of Ice and Fire series, and also a main character in HBO's adaptation of the series, Game of Thrones, where he is portrayed by Kit Harington.[S 1][S 2]
Jon Snow is the bastard son of Eddard Stark and the half-brother of Robb, Sansa, Arya, Bran and Rickon Stark. As a bastard, he is given the customary surname "Snow" to distinguish him from Lord Stark's legitimate children, and is resented by Stark's wife Catelyn. He is the same age as Robb and enjoys a warm relationship with the Stark children, particularly Arya. He shares his father's devotion to honor and tries to stay morally correct and upright, even when forced to make horrible decisions. Jon idolizes his father but is wounded by Eddard's refusal to discuss or even name his mother. Jon adopts the albino runt of the direwolf litter and names him Ghost because he has white fur and never makes a sound. He later displays the ability to assume Ghost's consciousness, making him a warg or skinchanger.
Jon Snow is first introduced in A Game of Thrones when he and his brothers Robb and Bran accompany their father as he conducts an execution. On their return to Winterfell, Jon finds a dead direwolf bitch and a litter of puppies that the children adopt. He takes the only white cub as his own. During King Robert Baratheon's visit to Winterfell, Jon is banished from the family table due to his status as a bastard. After being informed he cannot travel to court at King's Landing, he chooses to join the Night's Watch. Initially, he has only contempt for his low-born brothers of the Watch and hates his nickname Lord Snow, given to him in mockery of his bastardy. He eventually puts aside his prejudices and befriends his fellow recruits, especially Sam Tarly, after they unite against the cruel master-at-arms. He chooses to take his vows before the Old Gods of the North, and to his disappointment, he is made steward to Lord Commander Jeor Mormont rather than a ranger. He eventually realizes that he is being groomed for command. He saves Mormont's life by slaying a wight, a corpse resurrected by the Others. In return, he receives Longclaw, the ancestral blade of House Mormont and rides out with Mormont beyond the Wall.
In A Clash of Kings, Jon is assigned to a scouting party. When the party is overtaken by wildlings Jon is ordered to appear to betray the Watch and join the wildlings so he can discover their plans. Throughout A Storm of Swords, he travels with the wildlings and learns that they intend to invade the Seven Kingdoms in order to escape the Others. He also breaks his vows of celibacy and becomes Ygritte's lover. After scaling the Wall and infiltrating the Northlands with Ygritte and Tormund Giantsbane, he deserts them to warn the Watch. He helps defend Castle Black against the wildling's initial attacks, and when he receives command of the Wall, he successfully holds it against Mance Rayder's much larger force for several days; many wildlings are killed, including Ygritte, much to Jon's grief. When reinforcements from the other castles arrive, he is arrested for desertion by Alliser Thorne and Janos Slynt. Following Mance Rayder's defeat by Stannis Baratheon, Jon is released. Stannis offers to legitimize Jon and make him Lord of Winterfell if Jon renounces his vows, becomes a follower of R'hllor and cuts down Winterfell's heart tree. Before he can accept or decline the offer, Sam's intrigues see Jon elected Lord Commander of the Watch. When Stannis heads south to take Winterfell from the Boltons, Jon informs him that he may find support among the mountain clans southwest of the Wall.
Jon plays no active role in A Feast for Crows but it is revealed that he has sent away Maester Aemon and Rayder's new-born son under Sam's protection, to prevent them being sacrificed by Melisandre. Throughout A Dance With Dragons, Jon attempts to unite the Night's Watch, the wildlings and the remainder of Stannis' forces against the coming incursion by the Others. He allows Tormund to settle the surviving wildlings south of the Wall and tries to reinforce the Watch positions with wildling recruits. When several Watch officers openly revolt, he personally executes their chief agitator, Janos Slynt. While making preparations to rescue wildlings further north, he receives a letter from Ramsay Bolton claiming victory over Stannis and wanting revenge for the abduction of his bride. Rashly, Jon determines to lead a force of volunteers against Bolton but is stabbed by members of the Watch as an oath-breaker before he can depart. His ultimate fate remains unclear.