In the episode 6x10 of GOT, Littlefinger speaks with Sansa

after they defeated the Boltons

He talks about his dream and they talk about who should lead the North. There Littlefinger has a line:

A trueborn daughter of Ned and Catelyn Stark born here at Winterfell or a motherless bastard born in the south?

Who does he speak of? In the context he could only mean Jon, because it's either him or Sansa who takes command.

But he talks about a motherless bastard from the south. Could Littlefinger know that Jon is the son of Rhaegar or did he only mean that he was born in the south, assuming that he is the child of Ned and that motherless means that no one knows who Jon's mother is?

Am I just over-interpreting things here, or does he speak of someone completely different?

  • 10
    Nobody knows (as far as we're aware) that Jon is a Targaryen. As far as the world is aware he's Ned Stark's bastard by some unknown woman. Either way he's a motherless bastard from the south.
    – Moogle
    Jul 11, 2016 at 8:23
  • 10
    @Moogle there is one who knows. gameofthrones.wikia.com/wiki/Howland_Reed
    – kuhl
    Jul 11, 2016 at 10:51
  • 2
    @kuhl good point, I'd forgotten about Howland Reed. I guess news could have spread from him, but he's a very secretive person who was a good friend of Ned's, and fiercely loyal, so I doubt he would have told anyone.
    – Moogle
    Jul 11, 2016 at 11:41
  • @kuhl: more than one, there was a nurse present: preview.tinyurl.com/zhxsgu6 Jul 12, 2016 at 18:19
  • I'm struggling to understand how this question can be considered a dupe.
    – Andres F.
    Apr 27, 2019 at 20:49

2 Answers 2


He is talking about Jon.

Jon was born somewhere in South (We know it is Dorne but most people do not).

Eddard Stark went to war against King Aerys Targaryen with Robert Baratheon, Jon Arryn and Hoster Tully. The war was fought in South. When Eddard came back from war, he had Jon with him which made it clear for every one that Jon was born in South.

Jon is a bastard whose mother is unknown to most people. Therefore, Jon is the motherless bastard born in South while Sansa is the trueborn daughter born in Winterfell.

Also, Littlefinger could not possibly know about true parentage of Jon. Only two people knew of it; Lord Howland Reed and Lord Eddard Stark. And Eddard had openly declared Jon to be his son in front of the whole realm so that's what Littlefinger knows as well. This is proved by Baelish's conversation with Sansa in S06E05:

Baelish: The time may come when you need an army loyal to you.

Sansa: I have an army.

Baelish: Your brother's army. Half-brother.

So it is proven that Baelish thinks Jon is Sansa's half brother.

This "born in south" dialogue is an absurd innovation of show. Robb Stark was also born in Riverrun which is situated in South, not North.

  • 12
    “This "born in south" dialogue is an absurd innovation of show.” Absurd! Jon was born in the South, and Littlefinger says he was born in the South! What are those crazy writers thinking? Jul 11, 2016 at 9:44
  • 5
    @PaulD.Waite It is absurd because those writers make it sound like it is a bad thing. What makes it absurd is, Robb Stark was also born in South. And he is now a legendary KiTN. Which proves that being born in South does not have any impact on someone's popularity in North.
    – Aegon
    Jul 11, 2016 at 9:45
  • 13
    I think Littlefinger is trying to make it sound like a bad thing, to Sansa. He’s not above confidently talking nonsense in an attempt to further his interests. Jul 11, 2016 at 9:49
  • 3
    @Paul Yeah and Robb wasn't up for "election" against someone born in Winterfell itself. Jon is (hypothetically). That's the point. In this case Littlefinger is comparing apples and oranges, whereas a few years ago actually there were only apples so it really didn't matter. Jul 11, 2016 at 11:29
  • 1
    @AndrewMattson Catelyn did not become Northern. She still worshipped the new gods of the South. Ned even built a sept for her in Winterfell. She never liked spending time in Godswood. It was Ned she loved and Ned due to whom she adapted to North. Though I would not go as far as suggesting that she became Northern, there is simply no evidence for that. Paul's explanation is most plausible, he was just trying to make Sansa feel that Jon isn't Northern enough.
    – Aegon
    Jul 11, 2016 at 17:13

He could be talking about Gendry, or one of Robert's other bastards.

The King in the North is not the ruler unless independence becomes real. If one of Robert's children take the throne in the South and manage to unify the land, then they would also rule the North.

  • 4
    Gendry is an unacknowledged bastard. Nobody knows he is Robert's son. None of Robert's bastards were acknowledged (in the show). Therefore they have just as much chance of winning the throne as Hot pie does. Also they do not fit in the context.
    – Aegon
    Jul 11, 2016 at 9:30
  • @Aegon Fair enough about the context, but the first part clearly isn't true, since they were trying to kill Gendry in season 1.
    – deworde
    Jul 11, 2016 at 9:37
  • In Books Cersei gave the order to kill the bastards because they were living proof that Joff, Myrcella and Tommen were not Robert's children. In show I believe Joff gave the order for the same reason or just cruelty. They never gave the order because Gendry had a claim to throne. Only a handful of people knew Gendry was Robert's son. Most of them are dead, only Cersei and Melisandre are alive.
    – Aegon
    Jul 11, 2016 at 9:40
  • 1
    It's not impossible that Littlefinger knows about Gendry but Sansa certainly doesn't. Jul 11, 2016 at 10:46
  • 5
    Why would Littlefinger be talking to Sansa about Gendry?
    – kuhl
    Jul 11, 2016 at 10:53

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