House Greyjoy is one of the Great Houses of Westeros. It rules over the Iron Islands, a harsh and bleak collection of forbidding islands off the west coast of Westeros, from the castle at Pyke.
House Greyjoy’s sigil is traditionally a golden kraken on a black field. Their house motto is “We Do Not Sow.”
Sworn to House Greyjoy
In the Song of Ice and Fire novels the Greyjoys have been a powerful family in the Islands for possibly thousands of years, long ruling the formidable castle of Pyke. When King Harren the Black was slain by King Aegon the Conqueror during the Targaryen invasion, the ironborn lords elected Lord Vickon Greyjoy of Pyke to succeed him as ruler of the isles, now oath-sworn to the Iron Throne. The Greyjoys have ruled ever since. The Greyjoys hold themselves distant from the other Great Houses, rarely taking part in events on the mainland (which they call the green lands) and, at various times, even returning to their ancient practices of reaving and raiding the nearby coastlines.
After holding themselves aloof during Robert’s Rebellion, Lord Balon Greyjoy rebelled against the Iron Throne, declaring himself King of the Isles. Balon’s belief was that Robert, who had only been on the throne for five years, did not command the total support of the nobles due to his status as a usurper and would not be able to rally the support needed to crush the rebellion. He was proven wrong and defeated, with his fleet burned and two eldest sons slain during the war.