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"The runt of the litter. That one's yours, Snow."
Theon Greyjoy to Jon Snow[src]

Ghost is one of six direwolf pups that are found by the children of House Stark. He is adopted and raised by Jon Snow. Ghost is an albino with white fur and red eyes. Though he was the runt of the litter when he was born, he quickly grew to be as big as the rest of his siblings. Along with Nymeria, he's one of the two direwolves still alive.

Biography

Season 1

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Jon Snow finds Ghost as a pup.

When a litter of five direwolf puppies are found by the Starks, Jon convinces his father Eddard Stark to spare the pups and allow his siblings to adopt them, stating that there are five pups for the five trueborn Stark children and the direwolf is the sigil of the Stark house. Shortly after, Jon finds a sixth direwolf pup - an albino wolf. Theon Greyjoy mockingly says the pup is "the runt of the litter" and says this pup belongs to Jon. Jon and the other Stark children adopt the direwolf pups. Jon names his direwolf 'Ghost'.[1]

Jon takes Ghost with him to Castle Black when he joins the Night's Watch and Ghost helps him to threaten Rast in the middle of the night to prevent Rast from continuing to harm Sam in training. Jon warns Rast that “no one touches Sam” while Ghost stands over Rast, snarling.[2]

While Jon and Sam say their oath of fealty to the Night's Watch in front of a heart tree north of the Wall, just inside the eaves of the Haunted Forest, Ghost finds the corpses of two rangers assigned to Benjen Stark: Othor, and Ser Jafer Flowers, and brings one of their severed hands back to Jon and a horrified Sam.[3]

Ghost

Ghost snarls at Rast.

When Jon is confined to quarters for threatening Ser Alliser Thorne, Ghost begins to whine at the door in the middle of the night. Jon understands something is wrong and follows the wolf to the Lord Commander's quarters. Suddenly the door shuts and Ghost is locked outside the room. Jon encounters the undead Othor, risen as a wight, and saves the life of the Lord Commander.[4]

When Jon tries to leave and join Robb in his war against the Lannisters, Ghost leaves with him, but also returns back once Jon returns to the Wall.[5]

Season 2

Ghost on a hill

Ghost at the Fist of the First Men with the Night's Watch.

Ghost follows his master Jon Snow and the rest of the Night's Watch as they venture deep into wildling territory in their Great Ranging. While the Night's Watch men stay at Craster's Keep to rest and inform themselves about Mance Rayder, one of Craster's daughters, Gilly, is scared by Ghost when the white direwolf approaches her, attracted by a dead rabbit she's holding. Samwell Tarly, who had already taken notice of her, tells Ghost to get away.[6]

GhostDirewolfSeason2

Ghost accompanies Jon north.

Along with the black brothers, Ghost climbs the Fist of the First Men.[7] Later, when Jon asks to join Qhorin's raiders, Ghost follows, but as they travel, the direwolf separates from the group and ultimately disappears, despite Jon's calls for Ghost to stay with them.[8]

Season 3

Ghost Attacks a Wite

Ghost saves Sam's life.

Following the attack of the White Walkers against the Night's Watch at the Fist of the First Men, Ghost saves Sam from a wight, giving Lord Commander Jeor Mormont the chance to destroy the wight with fire.[9]

Then, Ghost accompanies the Night's Watch survivors to Craster's Keep but refuses to enter this time. Instead, he ventures back into the Haunted Forest.[10]

Later, when Sam stumbles across Jon's brother Bran Stark, Jojen Reed, Meera Reed, and Hodor, Sam recognizes Bran due to the presence of Bran's direwolf Summer, having spent enough time with Ghost to be able to recognize a direwolf.[11]

Season 4

S04E5 - Jon Snow & Ghost

Ghost reunites with his master Jon after being freed by Bran.

Ghost has been captured and caged by the Mutineers. One night Karl Tanner orders Rast to feed Ghost, which he refers to as "the beast". Rast taunts Ghost by pouring water in front of the cage. Ghost is later briefly reunited with his brother Summer for the first time since leaving Winterfell when his cries summon the other direwolf to his cage but Summer falls into a trap.[12] After escaping Craster's Keep, Bran Stark and his companions release Ghost and Summer. Ghost remains nearby and kills Rast when he flees the massacre of his fellow mutineers. Afterward, Ghost reunites with Jon Snow after being apart for more than a year.[13]
Ghost kills Thenn

Ghost kills a Thenn warrior.

They arrive together at Castle Black, yet Alliser Thorne orders Jon to lock him away.[14] During the Battle of Castle Black, Jon has Samwell release Ghost so that he can help kill the wildlings raiding the castle. Immediately, Ghost lunges at a Thenn warrior and tears out his throat. He ultimately survives the battle.[15]

Season 5

Ghost 5x01

Ghost nibbles on a bone.

Ghost remains in Castle Black, having grown considerably. While Jon Snow trains Olly, Ghost chews on a large bone.[16]
Ghost 5x07

Ghost protects Sam and Gilly from Night's Watch bullies.

When Jon departs for Hardhome and Maester Aemon passes away, Thorne cryptically warns Sam that he is losing all of his friends, presumably prompting him to free Ghost until Jon returns. Two former criminals in the Night's Watch later attempt to rape Gilly and Sam comes to her defense; they beat him, but he persists in threatening them. At this point, Ghost arrives to defend him, snarling at them; unwilling to take their chances against the angry direwolf, they flee.[17]

Season 6

After Jon is fatally stabbed by several of his black brothers, Ghost howls in mourning from his pen nearby. His cries summon Davos Seaworth, Eddison Tollett, and a handful of other black brothers who quickly move his body. On Davos's suggestion, Edd frees Ghost so that he can help them protect Jon's body. On their way back to Jon's quarters, Edd and Ghost are accosted by Thorne and the mutineers. Ghost snarls angrily at Thorne, aware of his role in Jon's murder. Unnerved, Thorne suggests that they release Ghost beyond the Wall, but Edd refuses and leads Ghost to Jon's chamber, where he sniffs Jon's body mournfully. When the mutineers offer the loyalists peace terms through the locked door, Ghost growls angrily.[18]

Game-of-thrones-season-6-home-liam-cunningham-kit-harington

Ghost sleeps near Jon's body.

At nightfall, the mutineers attempt to break their way into Jon's chambers to kill Davos and the loyalists. Ghost stands beside the loyalists, ready to fight to the death. Edd and the wildlings arrive in time to save Ghost and the loyalists and place the mutineers in custody. Later, Ghost remains close to Jon when Melisandre seemingly fails to resurrect him, and sleeps beside Jon's body. Once everyone has left, Ghost is roused from sleep by something and is the first to witness Jon come back to life.[19] Ghost then watches Jon intently as he gets up.[20]

Ghost leaves Castle Black with Jon as he travels with Davos Seaworth, Melisandre, Tormund Giantsbane, Sansa Stark, Brienne of Tarth and Podrick Payne prepare to rally the North against Ramsay Bolton.[21] For his safety, however, Jon does not let him participate in the Battle of the Bastards, especially after learning that his brother Shaggydog has indeed been killed as Ramsay stated in his letter to Jon.[22] Following Jon and Sansa's victory, Ghost returns to Winterfell with his master.[23]

Season 7

Ghost remains at Winterfell with Sansa, Arya and Bran Stark when Jon leaves to meet Daenerys Targaryen on Dragonstone.[24]

Appearances

Season One appearances
Winter Is Coming The Kingsroad Lord Snow Cripples, Bastards, and Broken Things The Wolf and the Lion
A Golden Crown You Win or You Die The Pointy End Baelor Fire and Blood
Season Two appearances
The North Remembers The Night Lands What Is Dead May Never Die Garden of Bones The Ghost of Harrenhal
The Old Gods and the New A Man Without Honor The Prince of Winterfell Blackwater Valar Morghulis
Season Three appearances
Valar Dohaeris Dark Wings, Dark Words Walk of Punishment And Now His Watch Is Ended Kissed by Fire
The Climb The Bear and the Maiden Fair Second Sons The Rains of Castamere Mhysa
Season Four appearances
Two Swords The Lion and the Rose Breaker of Chains Oathkeeper First of His Name
The Laws of Gods and Men Mockingbird The Mountain and the Viper The Watchers on the Wall The Children
Season Five appearances
The Wars To Come The House of Black and White High Sparrow Sons of the Harpy Kill the Boy
Unbowed, Unbent, Unbroken The Gift Hardhome The Dance of Dragons Mother’s Mercy
Season Six appearances
The Red Woman Home Oathbreaker Book of the Stranger The Door
Blood of My Blood The Broken Man No One Battle of the Bastards The Winds of Winter

Gallery

Family tree

 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
GhostFamilyTree
Ghost
(Jon's direwolf)
 
Nymeria-S7
Nymeria
(Arya's direwolf)
 
SummerFamilyTree
Summer
(Bran's direwolf)
Deceased
 
Shaggydog logo
Shaggydog
(Rickon's direwolf)
Deceased
 
GreyWindFamilyTree
Grey Wind
(Robb's direwolf)
Deceased
 
LadyTheDirewolfFamilyTree
Lady
(Sansa's direwolf)
Deceased

In the books

In the A Song of Ice and Fire novels, Ghost is the quietest and stealthiest of the six direwolf pups. While the other wolves are darker-colored, Ghost is an albino and silent. Jon Snow's younger brother Bran Stark notices that Ghost has already opened his eyes while the other pups' eyes remain closed. Ghost's like-but-unlike nature appeals to Jon as a kindred spirit and he shares Jon's thoughtful, observant, and quiet nature. Also shared is that Jon and Ghost are both part of their respective families, but a bit apart from their siblings at the same time as Jon is an illegitimate child while Ghost is a silent, albino wolf.[25] Ghost's appearance is said to resemble that of the faces found on heart trees in the North.

Jon finds Ghost separated from his siblings, as Ghost matured faster than the others: he was the first to open his eyes and walk on his own, and was attempting to find shelter away from their mother's corpse. Like in the TV series, Jon also convinces his father to spare the pups for his trueborn siblings and later finds the sixth pup shortly afterward. However, unlike in the TV series, Theon suggests they leave the pup to die, which Jon emphatically refuses and Jon himself claims Ghost as his own.

In the books, it is emphasized that Ghost is unnaturally silent: Jon tells Tyrion that he named him "Ghost" partially because of his albino coloring, but also because of how little noise he makes. In the books, Ghost is completely mute, utterly silent making no sound of any kind. This wasn't found to translate well to the screen, so Ghost makes noises like growling at Rast in his bunk or whining at Gilly holding rabbits.

Ghost accompanies Jon when he goes to Castle Black with his uncle Benjen Stark and helps Jon defend Sam from being harmed in training. When Jon joins Qhorin's scouting group, Ghost comes along. When Jon is forced to kill Qhorin Halfhand as part of Qhorin's plan for Jon to infiltrate Mance Raydar's host, Ghost helps Jon defeat Qhorin in combat. He remains with Jon as he infiltrates Mance Rayder's host. Before going with the wildlings to scale the Wall, Jon orders Ghost to leave and attempt to return to Castle Black. Ghost departs into the forest, and Jon hopes he understood his command. Many weeks later, several days after the Battle of Castle Black is over, Ghost returns to the Wall, where Jon and Ghost are overjoyed to be reunited.

In the TV series, Ghost initially shadows Qhorin's scouting group, but he does not appear again after Jon is captured. Apparently, on his own initiative Ghost made his way back to the Fist of the First Men, the Watch's main base camp, but it had come under attack by the White Walkers. Ghost is later seen with the survivors when he helps Jeor Mormont kill a wight that was attacking Samwell. Ghost apparently then tried to return to Castle Black alongside them, but when they reach Craster's Keep, Ghost senses the coming danger, and retreats back into the Haunted Forest. In the TV show, the mutineers at Craster's Keep capture him, but when Jon leads a scouting force back to Craster's Keep to finish off the traitors, Ghost is reunited with Jon and brought back to Castle Black. Afterward, he is let loose during the wildling attack on the fortress to aid the Watch's defense, and is seen to be by Jon's side at Castle Black in Season 5 - putting him back in sync with his book location.

In the books, Melisandre warns Jon of "daggers in the dark" and advises him to keep Ghost near him all the time. However, Jon does not listen to Melisandre, having given fully into his skepticism of her abilities as her vision about a girl in grey (who Melisandre believed was Jon's sister Arya) on a dying horse proved to be wrong. This turns to be a fatal mistake for Jon.

In his last breath, Jon whispers "Ghost" - similar to Robb, whose last words were "Grey Wind". It is unknown if there is a connection between these instances.[26]

See also

References

  1. "Winter is Coming"
  2. "Cripples, Bastards and Broken Things"
  3. "You Win or You Die"
  4. "The Pointy End"
  5. "Fire and Blood"
  6. "The Night Lands"
  7. "The Ghost of Harrenhal"
  8. "The Old Gods and the New"
  9. "Valar Dohaeris"
  10. "Walk of Punishment"
  11. "Mhysa"
  12. "Oathkeeper"
  13. "First of His Name"
  14. "Mockingbird"
  15. "The Watchers on the Wall"
  16. "The Wars to Come"
  17. "The Gift"
  18. "The Red Woman"
  19. "Home"
  20. "Oathbreaker"
  21. "The Door"
  22. "Battle of the Bastards (episode)"
  23. "The Winds of Winter"
  24. "Stormborn"
  25. Shaw, Robert (2003). "Interview With a Dragon". Fountainhead Quarterly.
  26. There is a fan speculation that Robb and Jon, in their last breath, managed to warg into their direwolves. It did not do any good for Robb, since Grey Wind was killed shortly after him. It is not the case with Jon, whose direwolf was not around when he was stabbed - he might have survived.