The question Is wildfire magical or chemical? describes wildfire and some of it's properties. However it does not give an answer to why it looks the way it does.

The origin of wildfire seems to be Greek fire but Greek fire is depicted as the normal orange-red colour. Was wildfire made green to make it more striking(scary) or is it properly explained?


2 Answers 2


There hasn't been any in-universe explanation as to why Wildfire is green. The Alchemists are known to be highly secretive of the substance.

It could possibly a reference that in Disney films lime green seems to be an "evil" color. GRRM has been known to sneak in references to the real world and other works of fiction.

  • 1
    Unless GRRM reveals the process of Wildfire manufacturing which is supposedly a secret guarded jealously by the Pyromancers, One can't even make informed speculation.
    – Aegon
    Sep 21, 2016 at 13:52
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    I'd question why there would have to be an explanation, anyway. Wildfire is green because that's the color that it is. They don't have the science to break down the components that absorb light on the non-green wavelengths. Is there an in-universe explanation for why the sky is blue, why dirt is brown? They made it, and it wound up being green. Kind of "it is what it is." None of this is meant as any argument or rebuttal to your answer, just commenting. Sep 21, 2016 at 13:54
  • Hellfire has sometimes been described as green (a fairly modern example would be World of Warcraft) - which I believe, but have no citation for, is due to it's "supernatural" nature. It is entirely possible that GoT alchemical Wildfire is partially magical in nature, and green was chosen to highlight this. Purest speculation, of course...
    – Ghotir
    Sep 21, 2016 at 14:29

We have discussed the nature of wildfire here.

There is no in-universe answer. Using a scientific approach, regardless of the temperature no black body radiation is dominated by green wavelength, ~510 nm. There are some substances which has green in their absorption-emission spectra. Using this, we can at most speculate the substances in wildfire. However I highly doubt that these substance change the temperature of the fire.

In our world, alchemists used green flames to scare people, taking advantage of its unnatural appearance. I do believe GRRM used green light to enhance the magical nature of wildfire.

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