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Every Major Game Of Thrones Character Who Dies In The Books

WARNING: Possibly the spoileriest thing in the entire history of the internet.

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WARNING: CONTAINS MASSIVE PLOT SPOILERS FOR CURRENT AND FUTURE SEASONS OF GAME OF THRONES

Lady - A Game Of Thrones

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The first many, many bad things to happen to members of the Stark family, Lady is sent to the great kennel in the sky on Cersei Lannister’s orders as punishment for her fellow direwolf Nymeria's attack on Prince Joffrey.

Viserys Targaryen - A Game Of Thrones

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Poor Viserys meets one of the series' grizzliest ends of the hands of Khal Drogo, who has a crown of molten gold placed on Viserys' head after the Beggar King threatens Daenerys and her unborn child. Much ouch. Very death.

Robert Baratheon - A Game Of Thrones

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The boozing and whoring King of Westeros is killed from injuries sustained in a hunting accident whilst chasing a wild boar. However, it’s later revealed that Robert’s accident was in fact caused by Lancel Lannister, who poisoned the king on the orders of Robert’s wife (and Lancel's cousin-cum-sexbuddy), Cersei Lannister.

Eddard Stark - A Game Of Thrones

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The first genuine proper "OMFGWTF??!???!?" moment of the saga, Ned’s decapitation on the orders of newly crowned King Joffrey sparks chaos in Westeros, and also firmly establishes George R. R. Martins undoubtable credentials for writing unpleasant and shocking deaths for the even series' most seemingly untouchable characters.

Khal Drogo - A Game Of Thrones

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Feared warrior and uber-beefcake Khal Droho is left in a vegetative state by the witch Mirri Maz Duur, leading moon-of-his-life Daenerys to smother Drogo in a final attempt to end his suffering.

Renly Baratheon - A Clash Of Kings

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Ending his questionable quest to claim to the Iron Throne, Renly is slain by a ghostly figure conjured by his brother Stannis’ sorceress, Melisandre.

Balon Greyjoy - A Storm Of Swords

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A mysterious and slightly daft death, Balon Greyjoy plummets to an untimely end when swept off a bridge by high winds during a storm (though speculation abounds that he was murdered by mercenaries at the command of his brother, the pirate Euron Greyjoy).

Grey Wind - A Storm Of Swords

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Killed in the chaos of the Red Wedding, Grey Wind has its head removed and sewn on to Robb Stark’s body as a final middle-finger to the former King In The North.

Joffrey Baratheon - A Storm Of Swords

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The splutter heard around Westeros, Joffrey gets his comeuppance when he is poisoned after his wedding to Margery Tyrell. His death is later revealed to be the work of Petyr Baelish and Margery’s grandmother, Lady Redwyne.

Ser Dontos Hollard - A Storm Of Swords

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Drunken defrocked knight Dontos Hollard is double-crossed and killed by Petyr Baelish’s men after helping Sansa Stark escape from King’s Landing.

Oberyn Martell - A Storm Of Swords

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Dorne’s premier badass, Oberyn Martell is killed by Gregor Clegane whilst acting as Tyrion Lannister’s champion during his trial by combat after the dwarf is wrongly accused of murdering King Joffrey.

Shae - A Storm Of Swords

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A far less sympathetic character in the books than in the TV series, tart-without-a-heart Shae is killed by her own Lion of Lannister, Tyrion, after everyone’s favourite sozzled dwarf finds her in bed with his father, Tywin.

Tywin Lannister - A Storm Of Swords

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Uber-villain Tywin is killed by his own son Tyrion whilst sitting on the privy due to, well, an entire life spent being an evil maniacal megatwat (including ordering the rape of his son's ex-wife, shagging his son's ex-girlfriend, and allowing his son be sentenced to death after being wrongly convicted of regicide). NICE ONE DAD.

Gregor Clegane - A Feast For Crows

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The Mountain That Rides eventually dies from the wounds inflicted from Oberyn Martell’s poison tipped spear during their dual, although many fans have speculated that he is in some resurrected form the giant later introduced as Ser Robert Strong.

Maester Aemon - A Feast For Crows

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Reportedly the oldest man in Westeros (no small achievement), Aemon Targaryen dies of natural causes after travelling with Samwell Tarly to the city of Braavos.

Sandor Clegane (disputed) - A Feast For Crows

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The Elder Brother of the Quiet Isle tells Brienne of Tarth that the Hound is dead and buried nearby. However, there are hints that Sandor Clegane may have just renounced his former identity and has chosen to live out a quiet, secluded life on the island.

Janos Slynt - A Dance With Dragons

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Lord Commander Jon Snow finally gets some form of revenge for his father’s death when he beheads Janos Slynt as punishment for the former City Watch commander's insubordination.

Grand Maester Pycelle - A Dance With Dragons

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Previously one of King’s Landing’s great survivors, Pycelle is killed by Lord Varys after nearly foiling The Spider's plans to subvert Lannister rule in the Seven Kingdoms.

Jon Snow (probably) - A Dance With Dragons

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Ok, so he’s not definitely dead, and George R.R. Martin’s recent habit of resurrecting deceased characters means that nothing should be taken for granted. However, the final paragraphs of "A Dance With Dragons" suggest that everyone’s favourite base-born crow meets a sticky end after being stabbed by his fellow brothers on the Night’s Watch. Though it's likely we'll know nothing until the "The Winds Of Winter" is published in some as yet unconfirmed year in the future...

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