Every ‘Game of Thrones’ Character Death

game of thrones character deaths

Over the course of its eight-season run, Game Of Thrones established beloved characters, blended political drama with medieval fantasy, and delivered some of the most impressive visual spectacle ever presented on television.

Perhaps more than anything else though, GoT stood apart because of its willingness to kill off notable characters. 

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That may be a grim distinction, but it’s part of what made the show great (“All men must die”, right?). All too often in our favorite shows (looking at you, Stranger Things), the characters we know and love escape deadly situations so often that an element of drama ebbs away; we simply stop expecting that something bad might happen to a core character. But GoT was different, and from very early on. 

Because of this, we wanted to do a different sort of homage to the show and look back on every Game of Thrones character death by season. Here’s a list, in order from beginning to end (in perfectly gruesome scenes)…. 

Jump to:

Season 1 Deaths 

1. Lord Jon Arryn 

Cause of Death: Poisoning
Episode: Season 1, Episode 1

Lord Jon Arryn was a mentor to Robert Baratheon and Ned Stark in the years just before Game of Thrones began. Unfortunately, while serving as King Robert’s Hand, he was poisoned by his wife (though it was really Littlefinger’s doing).

We never actually met Lord Arryn, but this is arguably one of the most significant deaths in the series. It clears the way for Lannister mischief, for Robert to call on Ned as the new Hand, and really, for the “Game” to begin. 

2. Viserys Targaryen 

Cause of Death: Crowned with gold
Episode: Season 1, Episode 6

Officially kicking off the death timeline is Viserys Targaryen. This whiny, petulant, would-be conqueror had one of the more gruesome and unusual deaths in Game of Thrones. After marrying his sister Daenerys off to Khal Drogo (in an attempt to use Dothraki forces to take the Iron Throne), Viserys got so annoying that Drogo poured molten gold over his head. The gold hardened and crushed Viserys while Drogo growled, “A crown for a king”. 

3. Robert Baratheon 

Cause of Death: Boar attack
Episode: Season 1, Episode 7

King Robert was gored by a wild boar on a hunting trip outside of King’s Landing, before dying later in his bed. This in and of itself might be a believable accident, but the fact that GoT tried to paint this as a murder actually made it a pretty clumsy death. Wanting to rid herself of her drunken and unfaithful husband (and elevate her family’s standing), Cersei convinced young Lancel Lannister to serve Robert too much wine – ultimately leading to the boar incident. It’s a bit of a stretch. 

4. Benjen Stark 

Cause of Death: Unknown
Episode: Season 1, Episode 7

Ned’s brother Benjen was a member of the Night’s Watch, and we don’t really know how he died. He simply went ranging beyond the Wall and disappeared. It was sort of an unsolved mystery, but it served two purposes: First, it set up Benjen’s season six return as a sort of maybe-but-not-entirely wight. Second, it seemed to spark Jon Snow’s interest in the Wall and what lay beyond. 

5. Syrio Forel 

Cause of Death: Swordplay (presumably)
Episode: Season 1, Episode 8

When the Lannisters took over King’s Landing, swordsmanship (a.k.a. “dancing”) instructor Syrio Forel instructed Arya to flee, while he remained to fend off Lannister stooges with a wooden stick. We didn’t actually see him die, but presumably, even Syrio couldn’t win a one-on-several fight with a stick against swords. 

6. Ned Stark 

Cause of Death: Beheading
Episode: Season 1, Episode 9

It’s familiar now, but Ned Stark’s beheading was one of the most shocking TV moments in modern history. The first main character who died on the show, condemned by the Lannisters on false charges, he was presented in public and executed (with daughters Sansa and Arya both present). Up to this point, Ned had appeared to be the series protagonist. This was GoT’s signal that it was not like other stories we’d seen before.  

7. Khal Drogo 

Cause of Death: Suffocating
Episode: Season 1, Episode 10

Mighty Khal Drogo could only be done in by trickery. As such, his death was pretty bizarre. He voluntarily sustained a wound in a duel he ultimately won with ease. But when said wound got infected, witchy healer Mirri Maz Duur more or less poisoned it. This led Drogo to decline into a sort of coma, which Dany freed him from by ultimately suffocating him. 

Season 2 Deaths 

8. Renly Baratheon 

Cause of Death: Shadow demon 
Episode: Season 2, Episode 5

Sometimes, you’re amassing a superior force to sweep into King’s Landing and proclaim yourself King of Westeros, and then you’re murdered by a newborn shadow demon. Or at least, that’s what happened to Renly Baratheon, courtesy of Lady Melisandre and big brother Stannis Baratheon. It’s a shame, because despite not being particularly likable, Renly probably had a shot at stabilizing the realm. 

9. Ser Rodrik Cassel 

Cause of Death: Beheading/hacked to death
Episode: Season 2, Episode 6

Ser Rodrik Cassel wasn’t a particularly significant character, but his death was among the most tragic. The Winterfell arms master had his head cut off in deliriously clumsy fashion by a raging, confused Theon Greyjoy. It was sad enough for its brutality, but the fact that it happened in front of young Starks Bran and Rickon made it all the more devastating. 

10. Maester Luwin 

Cause of Death: Mercy-killed
Episode: Season 2, Episode 10

There aren’t many GoT characters who are unequivocally good, but Maester Luwin was one of them. One part teacher, one part surrogate grandfather to the young Starks, he seemed synonymous with a happy, pre-war Winterfell. Unfortunately, he was wounded during Ramsay Bolton’s takeover. Osha spared him the suffering and finished the job. 

11. Pyat Pree 

Cause of Death: Dragonfire 
Episode: Season 2, Episode 10

Pyat Pree was a freakish schemer determined to get the better of Dany and steal away her fledgling dragons. He might have succeeded too, were it not for a Bond-villain-esque love for playing with his food, so to speak. Before the detestable Pyat could truly gain an advantage however, the dragons burned him to a crisp.

Season 3 Deaths 

12. Jeor Mormont 

Cause of Death: Stabbing
Episode: Season 3, Episode 4 

The main significance of Jeor Mormont’s character is that he handed a Valyrian steel sword down to Jon Snow. The sword would come in handy as one of a handful of weapons that could slay White Walkers. Mormont himself, however, was stabbed to death in a mutiny beyond the Wall. It was a rather unbecoming end for a decent enough leader.

13. White Walker 

Cause of Death: Dragonglass stabbing
Episode: Season 3, Episode 8

Many White Walkers died, but the one who met his end in season three’s eighth episode was significant, because he was the first. This was the White Walker who thundered out of the night to attack Sam and Gilly while they were beyond the Wall (and who presumably wanted to take Gilly’s newborn baby). But Sam managed to stab the White Walker with a dragonglass blade – killing the villain and making the crucial discovery that otherwise-immortal ice monsters are vulnerable to dragonglass. 


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14. Orell 

Cause of Death: Stabbing
Episode: Season 3, Episode 9

For those who may not know or remember the name, Orell was the scrappy wildling who could warg into an eagle, and who always believed Jon Snow was still a “crow.” When Jon essentially proved him correct (by refusing to execute a prisoner who’d aided the Night’s Watch) a skirmish ensued. Jon won the duel, but Orell kinda-sorta lived on, escaping into eagle form at the last moment. 

15. Talisa Stark 

Cause of Death: Stabbing
Episode: Season 3, Episode 9

Talisa Stark’s shocking death ranks among the most tragic in the series. Newly married to Robb and pregnant with the heir to Winterfell, she was stabbed in the belly and then murdered (in front of Robb, no less) during the instantly infamous “Red Wedding.” There’s really not a whole lot else to say about this one. It’s still unpleasant to think about. 

16. Robb Stark 

Cause of Death: Stabbing
Episode: Season 3, Episode 9

Robb, too, was murdered at the Red Wedding. The particularly tragic part of this character’s death was that he’d been coming into his own as a formidable leader. Granted, trusting the Freys in any respect or to any degree was foolish, but Robb seemed to be on his way to great things only to be cut down in what was one of Game of Thrones’ most memorable moments and perhaps the most treacherous event in TV history.  

17. Catelyn Stark

Cause of Death: Throat slitting
Episode: Season 3, Episode 9

Lady Catelyn was the other particularly noteworthy casualty of the Red Wedding, and went out in complete despair. The moment at which she grabbed a Frey daughter and slit her throat – out of some combination of hate, misery, and utter disregard for life at that moment – is unforgettable. Cat was subsequently killed (though in the books she lives on, in a sense, as the zombie-like Lady Stoneheart).  

Season 4 Deaths 

18. Joffrey Baratheon 

Cause of Death: Poisoning
Episode: Season 4, Episode 2

This character’s death will mess with you. When petulant King Joff was poisoned by definitely-not-Tyrion (it was the delightful Lady Olenna), he met a pretty gruesome end. Also, he was just a kid, and one whose family gave him virtually no shot at becoming a decent person. Nevertheless, it was incredibly satisfying (and probably one of the best deaths on the show), simply because he was such a despicable character (and had Ned killed!). 

19. Lady Lysa Arryn 

Cause of Death: Pushed out of Moon Door
Episode: Season 4, Episode 7

What good is a Moon Door if no one ever falls out of it? Okay, so Bronn discarded an Arryn guard fighting as Tyrion’s champion once…the door was getting some use. But it really felt like it was put there so we could eventually witness Littlefinger shoving Lysa Arryn out of it. It was a pretty treacherous moment (one could easily forget that Littlefinger actually married Lysa), but again, it was also a pretty horrible character meeting her end. 

20. Oberyn Martell 

Cause of Death: Mauled
Episode: Season 4, Episode 8

The “Viper” of Dorne was unfortunately the “one” in the one-and-a-half deaths that occurred in the “Mountain and the Viper” showdown. As every single fan of the show will recall, Prince Oberyn kind of humiliated lumbering Gregor Clegane in a duel, but got a little too preoccupied making the brute suffer. Defeated (and wounded by a poisoned blade), Gregor kicked Oberyn to the ground and savagely killed him, popping his eyes out in the process. 

21.Ygritte  

Cause of Death: Arrow shooting
Episode: Season 4, Episode 9

Poor Ygritte met a very unfortunate end. She fought with the wildlings in the Battle of Castle Black, but remained conflicted due to her feelings for Jon Snow. When at one point she had an arrow trained on Jon, however (there’s just no way she was going to lose it), young Olly believed Jon to be in peril – and shot Ygritte himself. We can’t blame the kid, but this was one of those “wait, no!” moments when you wished as a viewer that you could get a do-over. A pretty sad death to say the least…

22. Jojen Reed 

Cause of Death: Stabbing
Episode: Season 4, Episode 10

As we saw with Maester Luwin and Osha, Jojen Reed was basically relieved of his suffering (by his sister Meera) after suffering stab wounds. He was the sort of Game of Thrones character who seemed prepared for this kind of end and fulfilled his purpose despite his youth. Jojen essentially existed to shepherd Bran to the Three-Eyed Raven (and Bran’s own potential). 

23. Shae 

Cause of Death: Strangulation 
Episode: Season 4, Episode 10

This wasn’t Game of Thrones’ most gruesome death by any stretch, but it was extremely unpleasant in its own way. Shae gained deep affection from Tyrion over time (and seemed to genuinely reciprocate it), but ultimately went against him when Tyrion wanted her out of King’s Landing and away from his family. When Tyrion found out about her affair with Tywin, it was too much for him – and he strangled her with the golden chain he’d previously given her. A rare Lannister-ish moment from our favorite half-man. 


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24. Tywin Lannister 

Cause of Death: Arrow shooting
Episode: Season 4, Episode 10

Moments after strangling Shae, Tyrion found his father on the toilet. Furious that Tywin had imprisoned him (and sentenced him to death) for poisoning Joffrey (which again, he didn’t do), Tyrion was already in a murderous state. But the discovery that Tywin was sleeping with Shae pushed Tyrion past his breaking point. He shot Tywin twice with a crossbow, while his father sat on the toilet. 

Season 5 Deaths 

25. King Mance Rayder 

Cause of Death: Arrow shooting
Episode: Season 5, Episode 1

Mance Rayder was a complex character – neither bad nor good, and possessed a certain admirable quality. His assault on Castle Black seemed relatively pointless in the end though, and unfortunately he was ultimately captured and sentenced to death by Stannis Baratheon. As Mance prepared to be burned alive however, Jon Snow shot him with an arrow as an act of mercy.

26. Maester Aemon 

Cause of Death: Old age
Episode: Season 5, Episode 7 

There are few GoT characters as fascinating as Maester Aemon. At first, he seemed to be no more than another master, and one assigned to the Night’s Watch. As we learned in time however, he was in fact a Targaryen – uncle of the Mad King and a relative of both Daenerys and Jon Snow. The idea of a Targaryen hiding in plain sight was one of George R.R. Martin’s better ones, even if not a whole lot came of it. For his part, Maester Aemon passed due to old age (seemingly while having a vision of his long-lost brother Aegon, whom he called “Egg” in childhood). 

27. White Walker Lieutenant 

Cause of Death: Slashed by Valyrian steel 
Episode: Season 5, Episode 8 

Here we have another anonymous White Walker. And as with the one Sam slew with dragonglass, this one’s death was significant in that it revealed the power of Valyrian steel. Jon Snow stopped the lieutenant’s attack during the battle of Hardhome, and then found that Longclaw (Jon’s Valyrian blade) could kill the creature. This death was made all the more interesting on screen by the fact that the Night King witnessed it, and seemed more curious than upset. 

28. Karsi 

Cause of Death: Cut down by wights
Episode: Season 5, Episode 8 

Karsi was a wildling woman, and not a particularly significant character, but for the fact that she agreed to bolster Jon Snow’s forces before Hardhome. What made her death noteworthy was seeing her reanimate. In one of the signature moments in all of GoT, the Night King raised his arms and brought the dead from this battle to their feet – and Jon and Co. got a distant look at Karsi opening her undead, too-blue eyes. Memorable to say the least…

29. Shireen Baratheon 

Cause of Death: Burning
Episode: Season 5, Episode 9 

Few Game of Thrones deaths are as tragic or more so than those at the Red Wedding. But Shireen Baratheon arguably met the most devastating end of any character in the show. The sweet, innocent, and sickly child of Stannis Baratheon was simply burned alive as a sacrifice to the Lord of Light. Naturally, this was Melisandre’s twisted idea, but the fact that Stannis allowed it was bone-chilling.

30. Hizdahr zo Loraq 

Cause of Death: Stabbing (lots of stabbing on this list, folks) 
Episode: Season 5, Episode 9 

Hizdahr zo Loraq is a fairly forgettable character, but he did play a role in Dany’s ascension to power. A Meereenese slaver who was ultimately betrothed (albeit briefly) to Dany, Hizdahr was fond of staging what were effectively gladiator fights. During one such occasion however, a mass ambush by the almost comically chaotic Sons of the Harpy saw him stabbed repeatedly. 

31. Selyse Baratheon 

Cause of Death: Suicide by hanging
Episode: Season 5, Episode 10 

Something of a miserable figure in general, Selyse was the wife of Stannis Baratheon. She was more or less cast aside for the would-be king’s ambition (and apparent lust for Melisandre). She also seemed to want nothing to do with her own daughter, due to Shireen’s struggle with greyscale. However, Shireen’s heartbreaking death proved too much even for the somewhat icy Selyse. Lady Baratheon hanged herself after her daughter’s death. 

32. Stannis Baratheon 

Cause of Death: Beheading 
Episode: Season 5, Episode 10

It was a strange ending for Stannis Baratheon. Seemingly on an extremely twisted path toward becoming a potential force for good (-ish) in Westeros, Stannis made his way all the way to Winterfell only to be bested by Ramsay Bolton in battle. Exhausted in the aftermath, he was confronted (kind of out of nowhere) by Brienne of Tarth (who’d sworn to avenge Renly, and who held Stannis responsible for the shadow demon incident) who immediately beheaded him.

33. Ser Meryn Trant 

Cause of Death: Stabbing
Episode: Season 5, Episode 10 

By this point in the show, Arya Stark had learned to be a ruthless killer, eager to murder every victim on her kill list. And she hadn’t forgotten that it was Kingsguard veteran and Lannister stooge Ser Meryn Trant who had set upon Syrio Forel while she fled the Red Keep. In the season five finale, Arya finally caught up with Ser Meryn, posing as a young girl (Ser Meryn was fond of abusing them), before brutally stabbing out his eyes and savaging him with a small knife. 

34. Myrcella Baratheon 

Cause of Death: Poison kiss 
Episode: Season 5, Episode 10 

Despite being cloaked in the Baratheon name, Myrcella was all Lannister – and perhaps the only wholly innocent member of the family (we never thought Tommen was going to turn out that well). Evidently aware of her potential to be something other than wicked, Tyrion shipped her out of King’s Landing and down to Dorne. However, sweet Myrcella eventually fell prey to a vengeful Ellaria Sand, who kissed her with poison lips to get back at Cersei for Oberyn’s death. 

35. Jon Snow 

Cause of Death: Stabbing 
Episode: Season 5, Episode 10 

It’s easy to think back on Game of Thrones and reason that Jon Snow didn’t really die. Strictly speaking, he was dead for a brief time, however. Betrayed by members of the Night’s Watch (most notably the relentlessly awful Alliser Thorne), he was stabbed repeatedly and wound up pale and cold on a table. Yes, Melisandre eventually did her thing and brought him back, but during this instant (and for whole year of viewers being unsure of his fate) Jon Snow was gone. #FortheWatch

Season 6 Deaths 

36. Trystane Martell 

Cause of Death: Spear stabbing
Episode: Season 6, Episode 1

This was one of the more senseless deaths in Game of Thrones. It probably isn’t thought of that way, because Trystane Martell was a relatively insignificant character. Nevertheless, there’s no real reason the Dornish prince (engaged to Myrcella Baratheon) had to die. Basically, the Sand Snakes got very upset that Dorne had not retaliated following Oberyn’s death, and started killing family members indiscriminately. Trystane took a spear to the back of the head from Obara. 

37. Roose Bolton 

Cause of Death: Stabbing
Episode: Season 6, Episode 2

We might mark down “idiocy” as a cause of death in this case, as well. Roose Bolton repeatedly needled and goaded his wildly unstable and maniacally violent bastard son Ramsay, and basically took it a step too far. While seemingly aware of Ramsay’s innumerable faults, Roose seemed oblivious to the danger his bastard represented. Eventually, due to the threat of a new Bolton son becoming heir to the Dreadfort (and perhaps Winterfell by extension), Ramsay stabbed his father to death. 

38. Balon Greyjoy 

Cause of Death: Pushed off a bridge 
Episode: Season 6, Episode 2

We don’t have to dwell on this one very long. Balon Greyjoy was a miserable human being, a woeful leader of the Iron Islands, and a terrible father. No one was sorry when he was shoved off a bridge and to his death by his powerful and ambitious brother, Euron (another awful person, incidentally). 

39. Alliser Thorne

Cause of Death: Hanging
Episode: Season 6, Episode 3

While Alliser Thorne proved to be a decent combat leader at times, his primary function in Game Of Thrones was to be a jackass to Jon Snow. Disgusted by Jon’s high-born nature and jealous of the loyalty he engendered from many in the Night’s Watch, Thorne belittled and bullied Jon at every turn – and as mentioned, even helped to kill him. Once he returned and took command, Jon had little choice but to hang him for his mutiny. 

40. Olly

Cause of Death: Hanging 
Episode: Season 6, Episode 3

It’s pretty clear by now that Jon has the highest death count on Game of Thrones. Among his kill count was Olly. Olly had not wronged Jon as consistently as Alliser Thorne, but the boy had very much participated in the mutiny, and had helped to stab Jon to death. Thus, he was hanged to death alongside Thorne. 

41. Osha 

Cause of Death: Stabbing
Episode: Season 6, Episode 4

Osha was a fascinating character. She was a scrappy wildling at first, solely interested in self-preservation, who became quite loyal to House Stark – and particularly young Bran and Rickon. Those Stark boys owed their lives to her at various points, but unfortunately, they couldn’t protect her in return. Wandering with Rickon, Osha was captured and delivered to Ramsay at Winterfell. She made an attempt to seduce and kill Ramsay, but was ultimately outwitted and stabbed in the neck. 

42. Khal Moro 

Cause of Death: Burning
Episode: Season 6, Episode 4

Khal Moro more or less abducted Daenerys when she revealed herself to be the widow of Khal Drogo. Adhering to tradition, he carried her to the city of Vaes Dothrak. He ultimately threatened her life when she indicated that she could lead the Dothraki, but this led her to display her power. Immune to fire, Dany tipped over large torches and set a building aflame, killing Khal Moro and others.  


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43. Summer 

Cause of Death: Overcome by wights
Episode: Season 6, Episode 5

One of the most difficult parts of Game of Thrones for many fans was seeing some of the direwolves die. Indeed, it was heartbreaking to see Summer go. But the loyal wolf at least had a hero’s end, staying behind in the Three-Eyed Raven’s cave to fend off wights, so that Bran could escape. 

44. Three-Eyed Raven 

Cause of Death: Slashed by Night King
Episode: Season 6, Episode 5 

During the same scramble that saw Summer sacrifice himself for Bran, the Three-Eyed Raven succumbed to a slashing by the Night King. Everyone present in this scene (in the famous episode “The Door”) knew that the most important thing was for Bran to escape unharmed. But this meant that there was no time to save the Raven, whose long life came to a violent end. 

45. Leaf 

Cause of Death: Overcome by wights
Episode: Season 6, Episode 5

A fascinating character, Leaf was a rare member of the “Children of the Forest” – elf-like beings who created the White Walkers to ward off men in ancient times. Seemingly, in an attempt to undo that damage, Leaf fought for the Three-Eyed Raven, and by extension, Bran. But in this effort, she too had to sacrifice herself in “The Door.” 

46. Hodor 

Cause of Death: Overcome by wights
Episode: Season 6, Episode 5

“The Door” really was a tragic episode. Not many things could rival the sadness of Summer’s sacrifice, but the gentle giant Hodor physically holding a door until the wights stormed through came close. Of course, this was also when we learned that the name “Hodor” was a version of “hold the door,” and that retroactive childhood visions of his heroic sacrifice had rendered him unable to speak, save for the one word.  

47. Aerys II Targaryen 

Cause of Death: Stabbed in the back 
Episode: Season 6, Episode 6 

This is a death we very briefly saw in a flashback – or more accurately in one of Bran’s visions into the past. It was a famous event in GoT lore, during which the Mad King Aerys II Targaryen effectively set King’s Landing ablaze with wildfire. Attempting to stop the king from further madness, Jaime – a member of the Kingsguard – stabbed Aerys II through the back. 

48. The Waif 

Cause of Death: Arya
Episode: Season 6, Episode 8 

The Waif was a wretched character. A member of the Faceless Men, she was intermittently present during Arya’s assassin training, and despised the Stark girl. One could argue that she served a purpose in further hardening Arya, but beyond that, she was sort of just an annoyance (albeit a deadly one). Arya eventually slew her, though we didn’t see it happen. 

49. Razdal mo Eraz 

Cause of Death: Throat slitting
Episode: Season 6, Episode 9

Razdal mo Eraz was an influential slave trader in Yunkai – and an ill-fated adversary of Daenerys and Tyrion. Concerned wholly with the business of the slave trade, Razdal mo Eraz tried multiple times to deceive, outwit, and pressure Daenerys. Eventually, he outright threatened her, leading her to take flight on Drogon and burn his ships. Razdal then offered up a compatriot to die in his place as penance – prompting Grey Worm to slit Razdal’s throat, instead. 

50. Rickon Stark 

Cause of Death: Arrow shooting (or inability to run in a zig-zag pattern) 
Episode: Season 6, Episode 9 

Fans went crazy at this death – not because it was too sad (it was) or gruesome (not so much by GoT standards), but because it seemed avoidable. Rickon had been kidnapped and held by Ramsay Bolton at Winterfell, and was freed to run across no-man’s land to Jon Snow at the outset of the Battle of the Bastards. He then ran in a completely straight line while Ramsay taunted him with arrows, and finally shot him with one just as he reached Jon. Alas, a zig-zagging Rickon would likely have lived. 

51. Wun Weg Wun Dar Wun

Cause of Death: Arrow shooting 
Episode: Season 6, Episode 9

Wun-Wun, died in one of the show’s more heroic deaths. The wildling giant helped turn the tide of the Battle of the Bastards, and then sprinted from the field to Winterfell alongside Jon Snow and Tormund. With Ramsay content to hide behind the walls, Wun-Wun single-handedly beat down the front gate. This allowed Jon, remaining wildings, and the knights of the Vale to retake Winterfell – but Wun-Wun was killed by a barrage of arrows (and a sinister kill shot to the eye from Ramsay). 

52. Ramsay Bolton 

Cause of Death: Eaten by dogs 
Episode: Season 6, Episode 9

Ramsay Bolton was arguably the single worst person on the show, and certainly the most sadistic. Accordingly, the folks behind GoT gave us a bit of fan service, letting Jon march up to Ramsay and beat the living hell out of him. Ramsay was then imprisoned until Sansa could set his own dogs on him. Mercifully, we didn’t have to watch the rest. One of the best Game of Thrones character deaths, hands down. 

53. Grand Maester Pycelle 

Cause of Death: Wait for it…stabbing 
Episode: Season 6, Episode 10

The killing of Grand Maester Pycelle was effectively an usurpation. With the slimy Pycelle losing his grip on power and influence in King’s Landing, the even slimier Qyburn seized his opportunity, summoning Pycelle to consult with King Tommen. This was nothing but a simple trap however, leading to Qyburn’s “little birds” mobbing and stabbing Pycelle (who incidentally proved not to be as frail as he’d always made himself appear). 

54. Lancel Lannister 

Cause of Death: Wildfire 
Episode: Season 6, Episode 10

Lancel Lannister had a very strange journey on Game Of Thrones – from timid, lesser Lannister/pseudo-Robert Baratheon murderer, to ambiguously powerful religious zealot. At any rate, for his offenses against Cersei, he wound up on the wrong side of Qyburn – and thus another victim of those “little birds.” While Lancel was stabbed however, it was Qyburn’s subterranean wildfire sneak attack on the Great Sept that ultimately finished Lancel off. 

55. The High Sparrow 

Cause of Death: Wildfire
Episode: Season 6, Episode 10

To expand on the Lancel recap, we’ll remind you that Cersei and Qyburn essentially plotted to use the Mad King’s leftover wildfire to blow up the Sept of Baelor, and in doing so eliminate the increasingly powerful religious cult that the High Sparrow presided over. Well, the plot worked, and the High Sparrow was a direct casualty. This was oddly satisfying; there weren’t “good guys” in this conflict, but the “Faith Militant” had grown pretty irritating. 

56. Ser Loras Tyrell 

Cause of Death: Wildfire
Episode: Season 6, Episode 10

Ser Loras Tyrell was another victim of the Cersei/Qyburn wildfire plot, despite not being part of the Faith Militant. Rather, he was imprisoned by the Faith for his rumored homosexuality (among other offenses), and broken down to the point that he agreed to renounce his “sins” and convert. This was worked out with help from his sister Margaery, only for both of them to be caught in the wildfire explosion. 

57. Margaery Tyrell 

Cause of Death: Wildfire
Episode: Season 6, Episode 10

As mentioned, Margaery Tyrell was also caught up in the wildfire explosion at the Great Sept. This is perhaps an underrated tragedy from the show. Because despite the scheming ways she learned from her manipulative grandmother, Margaery demonstrated on numerous occasions that she had compassion for the people of King’s Landing. There was at least a chance that she and Tommen could have ruled graciously. 

58. Mace Tyrell 

Cause of Death: Wildfire
Episode: Season 6, Episode 10

For the head of a major house (Highgarden), Mace Tyrell was a pretty insignificant character. He was not as important as his mother (Olenna) or his children, and he came across somewhat impotently at his end. Mace ventured to King’s Landing to see Loras freed, and wound up smack in the middle of the wildfire attack. 

59. Tommen Baratheon 

Cause of Death: Suicide 
Episode: Season 6, Episode 10

We maintain that Tommen wasn’t out of the woods as far as potentially becoming a Joff-like monster (simply because he was Cersei’s pet). Nevertheless, he was still fairly innocent at the time of his death. Kept in his quarters by Gregor Clegane and unable to attend the trials of Cersei and Lancel, Tommen watched from afar as the Great Sept blew up. He recognized the horror of what his mother and Qyburn had wrought, and stepped out of his window to his death. 

60. Walder Frey 

Cause of Death: Throat slitting
Episode: Season 6, Episode 10

This one was as disgusting as it was morbidly satisfying. Walder Frey, we needn’t remind you, was the monster who carried out the Red Wedding at Tywin’s suggestion. In this season six finale however, Arya – by then in full assassin mode – caught up with him and fed him a pie made of the remains of his sons. She let him live just long enough to learn what he’d eaten, and then slit his throat. Brutally off-putting, but if anyone deserved it…. 

61. Lyanna Stark 

Cause of Death: Childbirth 
Episode: Season 6, Episode 10

We saw this Game of Thrones death in a crucial Bran flashback, which confirmed the wildly popular “R+L=J” internet theory. Said theory posited that Rhaegar Targaryen and Lyanna Stark had conceived a child named Aegon Targaryen, who had been disguised as Jon Snow. Thus, Ned Stark was Jon’s blood uncle – not his father. The flashback showed us Lyanna’s death in childbirth, and a deathbed conversation with Ned that confirmed the theory.  


EXPLAINED:
How Jon Snow and Daenerys Are Related


Season 7 Deaths 

62. Obara Sand 

Cause of Death: Speared
Episode: Season 7, Episode 2

Once again, we have the despicable figure of Euron Greyjoy to thank for ridding us of another not-so-fun-or-admirable character. In this instance, Euron – known for his prowess at sea – took on his own niece Yara’s fleet, and encountered Obara on board a ship. Euron bested her with a spear, and then displayed her body as a sort of token/warning on the vessel. 

63. Nymeria Sand 

Cause of Death: Strangulation 
Episode: Season 7, Episode 2

Nymeria arguably made the least impact of any of the Sand Snakes, and frankly blended in a little bit to their various subplots. She too, was active in the aforementioned naval battle between Euron and Yara, however, and met more or less the same fate as Obara. Euron strangled her personally, and hung her body off his ship, as well. 

64. Tyene Sand 

Cause of Death: Poison kiss 
Episode: Season 7, Episode 3

The tragic death of Myrcella Baratheon involved a sort of kiss of death from Ellaria Sand. Well, the death of Tyene Sand (another Sand Snake) was more or less a grim turning of the tables. Cersei managed to capture both Tyene and Ellaria (Tyene’s mother), and delivered the same poison kiss to Tyene – forcing Ellaria to watch the poison take its toll. This was a gut-wrenching character elimination despite the fact that Tyene was pretty underdeveloped.  

65. Olenna Tyrell 

Cause of Death: Poison (forced suicide, more or less)
Episode: Season 7, Episode 3

There are certain indomitable figures in fiction that simply can’t be fully defeated or killed, and Olenna proved to be one of them. That’s not to say she didn’t lose; Olenna remained in Highgarden as Lannister forces took it. But rather than being unceremoniously killed or symbolically executed, she managed a final audience with Jaime Lannister – accepting a cup of poison from him, and confessing with satisfaction that it was she who had Joffrey killed.  

66. Randyll Tarly 

Cause of Death: Dragon fire 
Episode: Season 7, Episode 4

Samwell Tarly’s stern, cruel father was never an endearing figure, but it was hard not to feel sympathy for him when he met his end. Having defeated a force of Lannisters and Tarlys, Dany and her dragons faced down surrendering prisoners. Dany gave them a choice of “bending the knee” in allegiance or being roasted. And when Randyll refused to kneel for a foreign usurper, Dany – despite desperate attempts by Tyrion to find an alternative solution – had him burned alive. 

67. Dickon Tarly 

Cause of Death: Dragon fire
Episode: Season 7, Episode 4 

Randyll Tarly’s death was violent and barbaric enough to earn him sympathy in and of itself. But the real reason it was a pitiable end was that Randyll knew his son and heir would burn with him. Dickon Tarly was among the same prisoners of battle, and foolishly spoke up and stood beside his father. Despite even Randyll urging him to bend the knee, Dickon chose dragon fire. 

68. Thoros of Myr 

Cause of Death: Wounds/cold 
Episode: Season 7, Episode 5

When Jon Snow led a company of elite warriors north of the Wall to capture a wight (in order to convince those in the south of the impending threats), Thoros found himself on the wrong end of… well, an undead bear attack. He managed to help fend off said zombie beast, but, severely weakened, died in the cold as his comrades fought off dense legions of wights. It was a sad farewell; Thoros was an interesting and useful character throughout. 

69. Viserion 

Cause of Death: Ice javelin 
Episode: Season 7, Episode 5

By this point in the show, Daenerys’ dragons seemed just invincible enough that we had a feeling one of them was going down. Lo and behold, the Night King shared our point of view. When Dany and her dragons arrived in the North to rescue the aforementioned band of warriors in a doomed battle on an icy lake, the Night King struck Viserion with a wicked-looking javelin. The dragon fell, died, and slipped into the water – only to rise later as a wight-dragon.  

70. Benjen Stark (again) 

Cause of Death: Overwhelmed by wights 
Episode: Season 7, Episode 5

We believe that Benjen Stark died once previously, and that the Benjen we saw in season seven was some version of the “Coldhands” character from George R.R. Martin’s books. It’s not really explained. Whatever the case may be though, Benjen showed up swinging a flaming mace of sorts to rescue Jon’s northern company. Benjen (or undead Benjen?) led the wights away, sacrificing himself to save his nephew. 

71. Littlefinger 

Cause of Death: Throat slitting 
Episode: Season 7, Episode 6

So often in fiction, talk delays a killing stroke. Either someone talks their way out of a sticky situation, or a villain talks so long that a hero escapes when they had no business doing so. Well, Littlefinger’s death was the perfect counter to these tropes. The Westerosi master of schemes and secrets had deceived the Stark sisters one too many times, such that when he finally faced them both and tried to drive a wedge between them, they played along only long enough for Arya to approach him and slit his throat. Littlefinger was a major Game of Thrones character to lose, but it was a wonderfully fitting end. 

Season 8 Deaths 

72. Eddison Tollet 

Cause of Death: Stabbing
Episode: Season 8, Episode 3 

As you’re likely aware, many of the remaining character deaths here occurred during the Battle for Winterfell (a.k.a. The Long Night). Such is the case with faithful Edd – a longtime friend and ally to Jon Snow and Samwell Tarly. Fighting bravely against the endless waves of wights, Edd managed to save Sam, only to be stabbed by a wight himself. 

73. Lyanna Mormont 

Cause of Death: Crushed by giant
Episode: Season 8, Episode 3

The feisty, fan-favorite young Lady Mormont feared no one, and made sure everyone knew it. In keeping with her almost comically brash nature, she kept herself in the action during The Long Night – only to be snatched up by an undead giant. This was a disturbing death; we literally watched the giant squeeze and crush her. But at least the fearsome Lyanna got a strike of her own in, bringing the giant down with a dragonglass shard to the eye.

74. Alys Karstark 

Cause of Death: Overwhelmed by wights
Episode: Season 8, Episode 3

Alys Karstark proved to be a strong ally to Jon Snow, and ultimately, the forces of the living more broadly. Beyond rallying the Karstark forces (such as they were) for the fight, she proved her mettle by joining Theon Greyjoy and others guarding Bran in the Winterfell godswood. There, she defended the young seer until her last breath – ultimately succumbing to the waves of wights. 

75. Theon Greyjoy 

Cause of Death: Stabbed by the Night King 
Episode: Season 8, Episode 3

Whole books could be written (and probably will be) examining Theon Greyjoy’s redemption arc. Frankly, he did enough horrible things that it’s tough to suggest redemption was even on the table. Nonetheless, he saw the error of his ways, protected Bran during the battle, and died in a fierce-but-futile charge on the Night King himself. Bran, at least, appeared to forgive his countless wrongs.  

76. Night King 

Cause of Death: Stabbed by Arya 
Episode: Season 8, Episode 3

Moments after the Night King dispatched Theon, he advanced on Bran to claim his ultimate victory. It was then, however, that a fully unleashed assassin Arya leapt out of the night from behind him. He turned and caught her by the throat, but couldn’t stop her from dropping her dagger, catching it in her other hand, and plunging it into his icy body. And so ended the greatest threat to Westeros in all of Game Of Thrones

77. Jorah Mormont 

Cause of Death: Battle wounds 
Episode: Season 8, Episode 3 

Not one thing felled Jorah Mormont. But in the confusion of The Long Night, he wound up defending Daenerys – the queen he served and loved – to his dying breath. The fight looked hopeless, but Jorah endured wound after wound to keep Dany alive, and lived just long enough to see that she would survive the night. It was a tragic death, but given the depth of Jorah’s devotion, it was difficult to imagine him going any other way. 

78. Lady Melisandre 

Cause of Death: Old age
Episode: Season 8, Episode 3

We knew by this point in the show that Melisandre was extraordinarily old, maintaining a youthful form only through magic (and that red stone that glimmered at her throat). But she only bothered with this magic for as long as she was needed to guard the realm against the dead. With the battle ended, she simply walked out onto the field, removed her enchanted necklace, aged several lifetimes in seconds, and crumbled to dust. As one does. 

79. Rhaegal 

Cause of Death: Harpooned 
Episode: Season 8, Episode 4

Okay, this time it seemed like Euron Greyjoy was doing a little too much damage. Basically, he shot Rhaegal out of the sky with a giant harpoon (somewhat like how Bronn nearly took down Drogon earlier in the series). We never really got to know Rhaegal the way we did Drogon, but needless to say this was a major loss for Dany and Co. 

80. Missandei 

Cause of Death: Beheading 
Episode: Season 8, Episode 4

Missandei became a captive of Cersei’s following in Euron’s defeat of the Targaryen fleet. In something of a show of power, Cersei then had Dany’s loyal friend beheaded by Gregor Clegane. What may have seemed like just another despicable action by Cersei was arguably among the most significant moments of the final season. This beheading seemed to break Dany – and Missandei’s final exclamation (“Dracarys!”) seemed very much like a call for Dany to burn it all down. 

81. Lord Varys 

Cause of Death: Dragon fire 
Episode: Season 8, Episode 5

Lord Varys was a schemer for both good and evil at times throughout the series, but ultimately seemed to be genuine (at least in his mind) in his intention to “serve the realm.” He wound up on the right side of things, recognizing Daenerys’ deadly intentions, and attempted to stop her from her impending slaughter in King’s Landing. Tyrion saw what Varys was up to, however, and reluctantly reported him – leading, ultimately, to execution by dragon fire. 

82. Euron Greyjoy 

Cause of Death: Stabbing 
Episode: Season 8, Episode 5

In perhaps the most random duel and unearned climax of the final season, Euron Greyjoy found himself dueling Jaime Lannister on the rocky shores beneath King’s Landing. Euron had escaped a burning ship and just happened to stumble on Jaime. The two nearly killed each other, but it was Jaime who landed the death blow – escaping the fight with severe wounds, and ending Euron’s creepy but deadly tenure in GoT

83. Qyburn 

Cause of Death: Choked and crushed
Episode: Season 8, Episode 5

With King’s Landing quite literally falling all around them, Qyburn tried to guide Cersei to safety. The two ran into Gregor Clegane, however, and while Cersei was allowed to pass, Qyburn was choked, lifted from his feet, and smashed against a wall. This wasn’t exactly pleasant to watch, but given that Qyburn was one of the show’s most detestable characters by the end, it was somewhat cathartic. 

84. Gregor Clegane 

Cause of Death: Fell into flames 
Episode: Season 8, Episode 5

In the long-awaited “Cleganebowl,” Gregor took on his brother Sandor in the crumbling keep. He nearly won the fight through sheer, brute force, but was ultimately grabbed by Sandor and wrestled off a ledge – hurtling hundreds of feet into the raging flames below. We assume he died, though who ever really knows with the Mountain?  

85. Sandor Clegane 

Cause of Death: Battered and fell into flames 
Episode: Season 8, Episode 5

There’s every chance that Sandor would have died from the wounds inflicted upon him by his brother, even if he hadn’t fallen into the flames, as well. After all, one or both of his eyes were gouged out and he was beaten beyond most mortals’ tolerance. Nevertheless, the actual cause of death would appear to be the same as that of Gregor’s. Sandor effectively killed them both to end the fight. 

86. Cersei Lannister 

Cause of Death: Crushed
Episode: Season 8, Episode 5

A main character whose demise we were wishing upon since the pilot episode. For all her power plays, her belief in her own supremacy, and her general defiance, Cersei Lannister died hiding in despair in the bowels of King’s Landing. There, she fled during Daenerys’ siege, only to be crushed in the rubble – along with her twin brother and one-time lover. 

87. Jaime Lannister  

Cause of Death: Crushed
Episode: Season 8, Episode 5 

Of the major characters still present at the end of the show, Jaime Lannister’s death was perhaps most disappointing. Having completed a long but believable (and downright compelling) redemptive arc, he simply decided that he ought to side with his contemptible sister. He needlessly snuck into King’s Landing and wound up right there with Cersei being buried in rubble. 

88. Daenerys Targaryen  

Cause of Death: Stabbed by Jon Snow
Episode: Season 8, Episode 6

Finally, there was the Game of Thrones death that ended it all. Her destruction of King’s Landing complete, Daenerys stood all-powerful in the throne room to receive Jon Snow. Having seen what his queen had become, however – and having seen that even Tyrion thought her too dangerous to live – Jon did what he believed he needed to do. He stabbed her during an embrace, and brought the deadly queen’s rule of the Iron Throne to an end before it even began. 

Not exactly a show that’s shy about killing off characters, is it? In many ways, this is what distinguished it from most fictions and fantasies. And though many of these Game of Thrones character deaths were disturbing or tragic, they certainly made for compelling drama. 

So there you have it, every GoT death scene in order – by season. Now it’s your turn to chatter – which were the ones that got under your skin the most?  

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Angela Stephanou

Angela Stephanou

Owner and chief editor of Tell Tales. Angela has a BA in Communications and oversees the content and strategy across Tell Tales, building an audience of pop culture junkies like herself. Her social media follows have more celebrities than real-life friends, music runs through her veins and she’d much rather be glued to her TV screen, piled under an array of snacks than go out on a Friday night. Angela’s guilty pleasure is watching cheesy reality shows like Keeping Up with the Kardashians, but she’s also a sucker for all things Marvel and DC - two entirely different worlds, we know.

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