In the television series of Game of Thrones, in series 6, episode 5 it is revealed that

the white walkers were created by the children of the forest, apparently to aid them in a war against men.

But where does this fit, chronologically? While it is stated both in the books and television lore series that the first men and children of the forest waged war upon one another, it also seems to suggest that the hostilities came to an end, and then later on the long night occurred (relating to the appearance of the white walkers)

So is this reason given for the creation of the white walkers a lie, is it retconned, or is there some other explanation?

  • 5
    Or maybe the TV series has deviated from the books? I hope so... I don't like this origin story for the White Walkers :/
    – Andres F.
    May 25, 2016 at 14:16
  • 5
    CotF and FM wage war, CotF create WW as a weapon against FM, WW get out of hand so CotF and FM collaborate to defeat them, WW retreat to the Lands of Always Winter, resurface again during the Long Night, get defeated and The Wall is built. Possibly.
    – BCdotWEB
    May 25, 2016 at 14:44
  • It was many many years ago, nobody (except Children of the Forest) knows chronology. But are there any alive CotF?
    – Schullz
    May 25, 2016 at 14:51
  • 1
    One thing to keep in mind. GRRM has specifically said that you can't necessarily trust the stories that are passed down. To think of a real world example, this would be like taking Arthurian legends as fact. These events (if they happened at all) occurred so long ago that no person will likely have an accurate account of them.
    – kuhl
    May 25, 2016 at 18:08
  • 1
    @Stumbler There are holes in HBO's version of the events. For anyone who is interested in breakdown of differences between Show's Night King and books, This might be helpful
    – Aegon
    May 27, 2016 at 7:04

1 Answer 1


Origanaly, Westeros was inhabited by the Children of the Forest. About 12.000 years before Aegon's landing, the First Men invaded Westeros under the leadership of the First King, crossing The Arm of Dorne, a land bridge connecting Westeros and Essos, located in today's Stepstones(between the Broken Hand and the Disputed Lands.)(AGoT-Bran 7, HBO viewers guide, season 2 Appendix, Westeros Through the Ages).

When the First Men first reached Westeros, they were stronger and bigger than The Children, they were equipped in armors and had bronze swords. Shortly, the First Men started to cut and burn the trees. The Children were annoyed by that, since they worshiped trees, and declared war on the First Men (AGot-Bran 7,The Children of the Forest, the First Men, and the Andals).

Trying to defend their land, the Greenseers (Children with supernatural powers) broke the Arm of Dorne using black magic. As the war continued, the First Men were cutting Weirwood trees, weakening the power of the Greenseers(ACoK-Bran 4) Later, the Children tried to break Westeros in two, by shattering The Neck just like they did with the Arm. However the failed, causing the flooding of the Neck, which is why the Riverlands are full of bogs and swamps(AGoT-Catelyn 8).

Finally, the War ended with The Pact, a peace treaty between the two races, signed in the Isle of Faces. With the signing of the Pact, the Dawn Age had ended and The Age of Heroes had started, a period of peace that lasted for 4.000 years, until the invasion of the White Walkers and The Long Night (AGoT-Bran 7).

We don't know when the Walkers where created but we know that it was during the War between the Children and the First Men, as an attempt of the Children to win, just like with the Shattering of the Arm of Dorne or The Flooding of the Neck.

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