The Rhoynar were a people from the eastern continent who fled to Dorne during a war with the Valyrian Freehold and intermingled with the local Andal population. They were named for their homeland, the immense Rhoyne river and its numerous tributaries.
Dornishmen are descendants of the Rhoynar and still keep some of their customs and laws alive.
In the booksEdit
In the A Song of Ice and Fire novels, the Rhoynar are an ancient people of Essos. They dwelt along the banks of the immense River Rhoyne, which extended for thousands of miles across many tributaries, forming a vital trade and transport link in western Essos. According to some sources, the Rhoynar taught the Andals how to smelt iron, though in Westeros, the Faith of the Seven teaches that the Andals received this gift from the Smith in a vision.
Over a thousand years before the events of the novels, the Rhoynar lands fell under the creeping influence of Valyria. The Freehold had established the city of Volantis at the mouth of the river and as the years passed they attempted to take more and more control of territory along the river. They also founded two other cities - Norvos and Qohor - on tributaries of the Rhoyne much further to the north. Prince Garin the Great led a quarter of a million Rhoynar warriors to push back the Valyrians, but ultimately he was killed his entire army was destroyed. The Rhoynar warrior-queen Nymeria united their city-states during the pause in the Valyrian advance bought by Garin's sacrifice. However, Nymeria realized that the Valyrians weren't going to stop until they annexed the Rhoynar kingdom altogether, so she assembled an immense evacuation fleet using every ship that could sail on the river. According to myth, she guided ten thousand ships out of the Rhoyne Delta, into the Summer Sea, west along the coast and through the Stepstones, to finally land in Dorne along the coast and the banks of the Greenblood River.
At that time Dorne was a patchwork of small, shifting states. Lord Mors Martell of Sunspear allied with Queen Nymeria, marrying her, and using their combined power they were able to overrun and conquer all of Dorne.
By the War of the Five Kings, the Dornishmen have a mixed ethnicity due to the intermingling and merging of the Rhoynar with the local First Men and Andals who were already in Dorne when they migrated there. The Rhoynar impact on the gene pool of Dorne is strongest along the coasts, and up the river valleys into the central deserts, where the people have the dark olive skin and long black hair of their Rhoynar ancestors. However, the impact was least in the isolated Red Mountains of western Dorne, where hardly any Rhoynar settled, and the inhabitants resemble blonde-haired Andals. A small group of Rhoynar, however, refused to assimilate with the local inhabitants or culture at all. A small, gypsy-like culture of river-folk moving up and down the major rivers of Dorne such as the Greenblood, these "Orphans of the Greenblood" are closest to the original ethnicity, culture, and religious practices of the original Rhoynar.
In the novels, the King of Westeros is styled the King of the Andals, the Rhoynar and the First Men. In the TV series, the ma,e "Rhoynar" is left out of the list, probably because neither the Rhoynar nor their Dornishmen descendants haven't been introduced in the first three seasons.
Cultures and Peoples of the Known World
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