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I was shocked to see in GOT Season 5 Episode 8, when

a white walker attacked Jon Snow, he killed him with his sword.

Can anyone explain how could this happen?

AFAIK,

white walkers can be killed with only dragon glass.

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No, His sword was made of Valyrian steel.

White walkers can be killed using Valyrian steel as well. As per the show John himself was not aware of it till the time he was able to kill whitewalker with his sword.

He earned it from Jeor, the Lord Commander of the Night's Watch before him.

As Per GOT Wiki:

Valyrian steel is recognizable from its sharpness, as well as a distinctive rippled pattern visible in blades made from it. Valyrian steel is one of the few things that can kill White Walkers, alongside dragonglass, although this property is not widely known, apparently, not even to the White Walkers themselves.

  • Valyrian steel swords were made with dragon breath and magic. Due to the former, they have the same properties as the dragon glass and old dragon steel. – Petersaber Jun 8 '15 at 6:31
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    Valyrian steel is "old" dragon steel. In the books there is no reference to Valyrian steel. – John Bell Jun 8 '15 at 10:14
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    @JohnBell "In the books there is no reference to Valyrian steel." Except for these 73 times. – BCdotWEB Jun 8 '15 at 14:57
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    @BCdotWEB: I think that JohnBell meant the books in which Sam reads about dragon steel; not the books written by GRRM in which Sam reads in old books about dragon steel. – user46271 Jun 8 '15 at 20:09
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@JohnBell - i think you will find Valyrian steel is mentioned quite a bit in the books:

A quote from the scene in question from the book

“We knew all this. The question is, how do we fight them?”

“The armor of the Others is proof against most ordinary blades, if the tales can be believed,” said Sam, “and their own swords are so cold they shatter steel. Fire will dismay them, though, and they are vulnerable to obsidian.” He remembered the one he had faced in the haunted forest, and how it had seemed to melt away when he stabbed it with the dragonglass dagger Jon had made for him. “I found one account of the Long Night that spoke of the last hero slaying Others with a blade of dragonsteel. Supposedly they could not stand against it.”

“Dragonsteel?” Jon frowned. “Valyrian steel?”

“That was my first thought as well.”

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