The same question was asked here: Why are there no maps of lands east of Westeros in The Game of Thrones? but the answers were focused on what reasons GRRM hadn't mapped it. I'm interested in what reasons people of Essos might have not yet have mapped the area?

For example, about Sothoryos is said this:

"covered in jungles, plague-ridden, and largely unexplored. The northern coast has been mapped, with the ruined cities of Zamettar, Yeen, Gogossos and Gorosh noted, but little else is known of them. Explorers of the Summer Isles may have mapped southern Sothoryos. If so, they keep these maps a close guarded secret. Besides the savage Brindled Men, particularly the ghouls and cannibals from the deep jungles, Sothorys is home to many fatal diseases, including blood boils, green fever, dancing plague, sweetrot, bronze pate, the Red Death, greyscale, brownleg, wormbone, sailor's bane, pus-eye, and yellowgum."

A Wiki of Ice and Fire — "Sothoryos"

Those are understandable reasons. But why is east of Essos unknown? From this map you can see that just before the map ends, there is Grey Waste, which is "an expansive, cold desert" and possibly hard to cross.

A map of Westerns of Essos

But in the map there are elements that don't support the idea that the eastern part is hard to reach. For example there are two cities right before the map ends, City of the Winged Man and Carcosa. Both are said to be "legendary", but Carcosa seems to be a living city, and "is ruled by a sorceror lord claiming to be the 69th yellow emperor of Yi Ti." Also from Nefer to east there is a forest area Mussovy.

Taking all this information into account, it doesn't seem likely that people don't travel to east and it doesn't provide reason why map ends so abruptly. What might be the reason?

  • 6
    Ah, a city called Carcosa ruled by a King in yellow, eh?
    – Adamant
    Jul 15, 2017 at 6:10
  • FYI, there is also green people.
    – Boat
    Jul 15, 2017 at 6:45
  • 4
    Maybe because no one among the Westerosi has ever ventured that far?. Westeros is set in a medieval setting where people had Maps of the Known World, not complete World. Take a look at our own world, it was not until Age of Sail and Age of Discovery that we finally came to know about our own World. The Maps you see are drawn by the Westerosi for the Westerosi. The Info about most of Essos is from TWOIAF, which is written by a Maester.
    – Aegon
    Jul 15, 2017 at 6:58
  • Also, your question has three sub-questions, "Why is Essos not Mapped?", Why are CoWM and Carcosa dubbed legendary? And why people from Nefer don't pass through the forest area Mussovy? That makes it too broad. Ask multiple questions if you have multiple questions. Keep one post focused on one question, if you think they are related contextually, you can link this question in others.
    – Aegon
    Jul 15, 2017 at 7:00
  • 2
    Yes, I removed the Mussovy question because it was indeed unclear, and the legendary cities part was never formed as a question.
    – Boat
    Jul 15, 2017 at 7:45

1 Answer 1


"Here there be dragons" is even more appropriate for a map of an unknown area of Westeros than on a map of an unknown area of our own world.

More in depth however the area isnt mapped because no one has ever gone and returned its possible there are hideous creatures in the expanse of the wastes or that the desert goes for thousands of miles (you will notice the 2 cities are on the edge of a lake hard to cross a desert if you need to carry a few months worth of water), maybe the area to the east of Carcona is sacred to the people of that city and they kill anyone trying to enter it

You could possibly sail a ship to map the coastline and perhaps it has been tried or perhaps not it would take a great deal of money for potentially no return and it would take many brave men (brave and stupid) to crew the ship.


the area isnt mapped because no one who had a desire to map it survived the attempt


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