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{{Heraldry
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|image=Bolton mini shield.png
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|link=House Bolton
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}}
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{{Character
 
{{Character
| Title = [[File:House-Bolton-sigil.jpg|40px|left|link=House Bolton]] Roose Bolton [[File:House-Bolton-sigil.jpg|40px|right|link=House Bolton]]
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| Title = Roose Bolton
| Image = Roose-3x01.jpg
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| Image = Roose Bolton-S05E06.png
| Season = [[season 2|2]], [[Season 3|3]]
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| Season = [[season 2|2]], [[Season 3|3]], [[Season 4|4]], [[Season 5|5]], [[Season 6|6]]
 
| First="[[Garden of Bones]]"
 
| First="[[Garden of Bones]]"
| Last="[[Mhysa]]"
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| Last=
| Appearances=11 episodes <small>[[#Appearances|(see below)]]</small>
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| Appearances=17 episodes <small>[[#Appearances|(see below)]]</small>
 
| Status= [[:Category:Status: Alive|Alive]]
 
| Status= [[:Category:Status: Alive|Alive]]
| Titles=[[Lord of the Dreadfort]]<br>[[Warden of the North]]<br>[[Lord Paramount of the North]]
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| Titles=[[Lord of the Dreadfort]]<br>[[Warden of the North]]<br>[[Lord Paramount of the North]]<br>[[Lord of Winterfell]]
 
| Aka=
 
| Aka=
| Place = [[Dreadfort|The Dreadfort]]
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| Culture= [[Northmen]]
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| Place = [[The Dreadfort]]
 
| Allegiance = [[House Bolton]]
 
| Allegiance = [[House Bolton]]
| Family = [[Ramsay Snow]] - bastard son<br>[[Walda Bolton]] - wife
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| Religion= [[Old Gods of the Forest]]
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| Family = {[[Domeric Bolton]]} - trueborn son<br>[[Ramsay Bolton]] - legitimized bastard son<br>[[Walda Bolton]] - wife<br>[[Sansa Stark]] - daughter-in-law<br>[[Walder Frey]] - grandfather-in-law<br> unborn child
 
| Actor = [[Michael McElhatton]]}}
 
| Actor = [[Michael McElhatton]]}}
{{Quote|The Lannisters send their regards.|Roose Bolton to Robb Stark as he killed him.|The Rains of Castamere}}
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{{Quote|In my family we say: A naked man has few secrets; a flayed man, none.|Roose Bolton|Garden of Bones}}
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Lord '''Roose Bolton''' is a major character in the [[Season 5|fifth]] and [[Season 6|sixth]] seasons. He initially appeared as a recurring character in the [[Season 2|second]], [[Season 3|third]] and [[Season 4|fourth]] seasons. He is played by [[Michael McElhatton]] and debuts in "[[Garden of Bones]]." Roose Bolton is the [[Lord of the Dreadfort]] and the head of [[House Bolton]]. He is also the father of [[Ramsay Bolton]], his [[Legitimization|legitimized]] [[bastard]], and an unborn son from his wife, [[Walda Frey]].
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A powerful bannerman of [[House Stark]] of [[Winterfell]], Roose answers the summons of [[Robb Stark]] after his liege lord, [[Eddard Stark]], is arrested in [[King's Landing]]. Fighting alongside Robb Stark, Roose eventually betrays him after the decisive [[Lannister]] victory at the [[Battle of the Blackwater]]. The Boltons, in an alliance with [[House Frey]], kill most of the Northern army at the infamous [[Red Wedding]], with Roose killing Robb Stark himself.
   
Lord '''Roose Bolton''' is a recurring character in the [[Season 2|second]] and [[Season 3|third]] seasons. He is played by [[Michael McElhatton]] and debuts in "[[Garden of Bones]]." Roose Bolton is the [[Lord of the Dreadfort]] and the head of [[House Bolton]]. He declared for [[Robb Stark]] in the [[War of the Five Kings]], but ultimately betrayed Robb and murdered him during the [[Red Wedding|massacre]] at [[Edmure Tully]]'s wedding at [[The Twins]], and was appointed [[Warden|Warden of the North]] as a reward.
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As a reward for his betrayal, Roose is appointed the new [[Warden of the North]] by [[Tywin Lannister]] and sets about reclaiming his new lands from the invading [[ironborn]]. Reclaiming [[Moat Cailin]] and securing greater legitimacy by marrying Ramsay to [[Sansa Stark]], Roose's position is later threatened by [[Stannis Baratheon]], who seeks to rally the North to his cause in his campaign to retake the Iron Throne. However, due to the approaching winter and a weakened army, the Boltons are able to defeat Stannis, although it is a pyrrhic victory, since during the battle, Sansa escapes from Winterfell with the help of Roose and Ramsay's prisoner, [[Theon Greyjoy]], severely weakening the Boltons' hold on the North.
   
 
==Biography==
 
==Biography==
 
===Background===
 
===Background===
He is the head of [[House Bolton]], a vassal family to [[House Stark]] of [[Winterfell]]. He is the [[Lord of the Dreadfort]]. Roose takes pride in his house sigil; the flayed man. Although torture is outlawed in [[the North]] his family are famous for flaying the skin from their enemies as a means of torture. Roose fought for Lord [[Eddard Stark]] in the civil war known as [[Robert's Rebellion]] and proved his worth as a soldier in the [[Battle of the Trident]].<ref>[http://viewers-guide.hbo.com/game-of-thrones/season2/#!/guide/houses/stark/roose-bolton/ HBO viewers guide, season 2 guide to houses, House Stark - Roose Bolton entry]</ref>
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Roose Bolton is the head of [[House Bolton]], a vassal family to [[House Stark]] of [[Winterfell]]. He is the [[Lord of the Dreadfort]]. Roose takes pride in his house sigil; the flayed man. Although torture is outlawed in [[the North]], his family is famous for flaying the skin from their enemies as a means of torture and execution. Roose fought for Lord [[Eddard Stark]] in the civil war known as [[Robert's Rebellion]] and proved his worth as a soldier in the [[Battle of the Trident]].<ref>[http://viewers-guide.hbo.com/game-of-thrones/season2/#!/guide/houses/stark/roose-bolton/ HBO viewers guide, season 2 guide to houses, House Stark - Roose Bolton entry]</ref>
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[[File:Roose-Bolton-bannerman.jpg|thumb|right|250px|Roose Bolton: A seemingly loyal Stark bannerman.]]
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Roose Bolton had a trueborn son, [[Domeric Bolton|Domeric]], who perished, forcing Roose to rely on his [[bastard]] son, [[Ramsay Snow]].<ref>"Bastards of Westeros" promotional video</ref>
   
 
===[[Season 1]]===
 
===[[Season 1]]===
[[House Bolton]] banners are present among [[Robb Stark]]'s forces as they assemble at Winterfell and march south to fight [[House Lannister]] following the imprisonment and execution of Lord [[Eddard Stark]].<ref>"[[The Pointy End]]"</ref><ref name="E10">"[[Fire and Blood]]"</ref> Robb is proclaimed [[King in the North]] by his bannermen following the death of Eddard, although Roose is not seen.<ref name="E10"/>
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[[House Bolton]] banners are present among [[Robb Stark]]'s forces as they assemble at Winterfell and march south to fight [[House Lannister]] following the imprisonment and execution of Lord [[Eddard Stark]].<ref>"[[The Pointy End]]"</ref><ref name="E10">"[[Fire and Blood]]"</ref> Robb is proclaimed [[King in the North]] by his bannermen following the death of Eddard, although Roose is not present.<ref name="E10" />
   
 
===[[Season 2]]===
 
===[[Season 2]]===
Roose fights for King [[Robb Stark]] in his decisive victory at the [[Battle of Oxcross]]. The following morning Roose reports that they killed five Lannister men for every casualty they suffered. He expresses concern over the volume of prisoners they have taken, saying that they are struggling to feed their own men. Robb insists that the prisoners be treated well and rejects Roose’s suggestion that they torture the officers, reminding him that the Bolton’s traditional practice of flaying their enemies is outlawed in the North. Roose warns Robb that the high road is pretty but difficult. Robb counters that he is treating his prisoners as he hopes the Lannisters will treat his sisters.<ref name="E14">"[[Garden of Bones]]"</ref>
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Roose fights for King [[Robb Stark]] in his decisive victory at the [[Battle of Oxcross]]. The following morning Roose reports that they killed five Lannister men for every casualty they suffered. He expresses concern over the volume of prisoners they have taken, saying that they are struggling to feed their own men. Robb insists that the prisoners be treated well and rejects Roose’s suggestion that they torture the officers, reminding him that the Boltons' traditional practice of flaying their enemies is outlawed in the North. Roose warns Robb that the high road is pretty but difficult. Robb counters that he is treating his prisoners as he hopes the Lannisters will treat his sisters.<ref name="E14">"[[Garden of Bones]]"</ref>
[[File:Roosethemessanger.jpg|thumb|right|250px|Lord Bolton delivers news of Winterfell's capture in "[[The Old Gods and the New]]".]]
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[[File:Roosethemessanger.jpg|thumb|left|250px|Lord Bolton delivers news of Winterfell's capture in "[[The Old Gods and the New]]".]]
They come across a nurse, [[Talisa Maegyr]], and a [[Silent Sisters|silent sister]] treating a [[wounded Lannister]] soldier. The healer is preparing to amputate his leg to prevent a wound infection spreading. The soldier is begging her not to proceed but she insists on the necessity of amputation. Roose criticizes her spending time on the Lannister soldiers and she retorts that the Northmen are not her men. Robb helps to restrain the wounded man as she saws off his lower leg.<ref name="E14"/>
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They come across a nurse, [[Talisa Stark|Talisa Maegyr]], and a [[Silent Sisters|silent sister]] treating a [[wounded Lannister]] soldier. The healer is preparing to amputate his leg to prevent a wound infection spreading. The soldier is begging her not to proceed but she insists on the necessity of amputation. Roose criticizes her spending time on the Lannister soldiers and she retorts that the Northmen are not her men. Robb helps to restrain the wounded man as she saws off his lower leg.<ref name="E14" />
   
He later brings Robb and [[Catelyn Stark]] news of [[Winterfell]]'s fall at the hands of the turncloak [[Theon Greyjoy]]. He reports that there is no news of Robb's brothers, but that Ser [[Rodrik Cassel]] has been killed. An enraged Robb declares that he must return north to retake his castle and save his brothers, but Roose counters that they have the Lannisters on the retreat, and must continue their offensive. He tells the King that he can have his bastard son, [[Ramsay Snow]], muster several hundred men to retake Winterfell. Robb relents, but orders that the safety of his brothers is paramount. Robb insists that Theon must be brought to him alive so he can inquire as to why he betrayed the North - and so that Robb can execute him personally.<ref>"[[The Old Gods and the New]]"</ref>
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He later brings Robb and [[Catelyn Stark]] news of [[Winterfell]]'s fall at the hands of the turncloak [[Theon Greyjoy]]. He reports that there is no news of Robb's brothers, but that Ser [[Rodrik Cassel]] has been killed. An enraged Robb declares that he must return north to retake his castle and save his brothers, but Roose counters that they have the Lannisters on the retreat, and must continue their offensive. He tells the King that he can have his [[Bastardy|bastard]] son, [[Ramsay Bolton|Ramsay Snow]], muster several hundred men to retake Winterfell. Robb relents, but orders that the safety of his brothers is paramount. Robb insists that Theon must be brought to him alive so he can inquire as to why he betrayed the North - and so that Robb can execute him personally.<ref>"[[The Old Gods and the New]]"</ref>
   
 
[[File:Robb Stark and Roose Bolton.jpg|250px|thumb|Robb Stark and Roose Bolton discuss plans to recapture Winterfell in "[[The Prince of Winterfell]]".]]
 
[[File:Robb Stark and Roose Bolton.jpg|250px|thumb|Robb Stark and Roose Bolton discuss plans to recapture Winterfell in "[[The Prince of Winterfell]]".]]
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===[[Season 3]]===
 
===[[Season 3]]===
[[File:Roose-and-Robb-3x01.jpg|thumb|250px|Robb Stark and Roose Bolton discuss their attack on Harrenhal in "[[Valar Dohaeris]]."]]
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[[File:Roose-and-Robb-3x01.jpg|thumb|left|250px|Robb Stark and Roose Bolton discuss their attack on Harrenhal in "[[Valar Dohaeris]]."]]
Roose, along with the rest of the Northern host [[Liberation of Harrenhal|arrives]] at [[Harrenhal]], finding the ruined castle abandoned and the captives slain, save for a man in maester robes named [[Qyburn]]. While Robb and Talisa attend to the man's injuries, Roose discusses Jaime Lannister's escape with [[Rickard Karstark]], and assures him that the dead will be avenged in time.<ref>"[[Valar Dohaeris]]</ref>
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Roose, along with the rest of the Northern host[[Liberation of Harrenhal|arrives]] at [[Harrenhal]], finding the ruined castle abandoned and the captives slain, save for a man in [[Maesters|maester]] robes named [[Qyburn]]. While Robb and Talisa attend to the man's injuries, Roose discusses Jaime Lannister's escape with [[Rickard Karstark]], and assures him that the dead will be avenged in time.<ref>"[[Valar Dohaeris]]</ref>
   
 
Messenger-[[ravens]] come to Harrenhal bearing news of [[Hoster Tully]]'s death, and of Winterfell's destruction. Roose delivers the messages to Robb, who charges Bolton with holding Harrenhal with a portion of the Northern army, while he and the bulk of his forces ride for [[Riverrun]].<ref>"[[Dark Wings, Dark Words]]"</ref>
 
Messenger-[[ravens]] come to Harrenhal bearing news of [[Hoster Tully]]'s death, and of Winterfell's destruction. Roose delivers the messages to Robb, who charges Bolton with holding Harrenhal with a portion of the Northern army, while he and the bulk of his forces ride for [[Riverrun]].<ref>"[[Dark Wings, Dark Words]]"</ref>
   
Roose's minion, Locke, successfully recaptures Jaime Lannister, and delivers him to his Lord at Harrenhal. Roose is visibly angered at Jaime's mutilated state.<ref>"[[Kissed by Fire]]"</ref>
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Roose's minion, [[Locke]], successfully recaptures Jaime Lannister, and delivers him to his Lord at Harrenhal. Roose is visibly angered at Jaime's mutilated state. Jaime asks Roose about Cersei. In a moment of callousness, Roose explains the details of the [[Battle of the Blackwater]], in which [[Stannis Baratheon]] attacked [[King's Landing]], and appears on the verge of telling Jaime that Cersei is dead, only to tell him that Tywin Lannister arrived at the last minute and fought Stannis off. Jaime's relief sends him to his knees, visibly amusing Roose.<ref>"[[Kissed by Fire]]"</ref>
 
[[File:Lannister-enimity-means-little-to-Bolton.jpg|thumb|right|250px|Roose negotiates with Jaime and Brienne in "[[The Climb]]".]]
 
[[File:Lannister-enimity-means-little-to-Bolton.jpg|thumb|right|250px|Roose negotiates with Jaime and Brienne in "[[The Climb]]".]]
Roose negotiates with Jaime and Brienne over dinner. Bolton weighs up his options; bluntly informing his captives that the safest course of action would simply be to murder both of them, and discreetly dispose of their bodies. Although Jaime attempts to sway Roose by reminding him of the consequences of crossing his father, Roose is unperturbed at the prospect of having Lord Tywin as an enemy, as the war is keeping him fully occupied. Ultimately Roose relents, agreeing to release Jaime, and return him safely to [[King's Landing]] on the condition that he inform his father that Bolton had no part in the loss of Jaime's hand. He also retains Brienne as a hostage, stating his intention to charge her with treason.<ref>"[[The Climb]]"</ref>
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Roose negotiates with Jaime and [[Brienne of Tarth]] over dinner. Bolton weighs up his options; bluntly informing his captives that the safest course of action would simply be to murder both of them, and discreetly dispose of their bodies. Although Jaime attempts to sway Roose by reminding him of the consequences of crossing his father, Roose is unperturbed at the prospect of having Lord Tywin as an enemy, as the war is keeping him fully occupied. Ultimately Roose relents, agreeing to release Jaime, and return him safely to King's Landing on the condition that he inform his father that Bolton had no part in the loss of Jaime's hand. He also retains Brienne as a hostage, stating his intention to charge her with treason.<ref>"[[The Climb]]"</ref>
   
Before Jaime departs for King's Landing, Roose asks Jaime to give his regards to Jaime's father [[Tywin Lannister|Tywin]]. Jaime then asks Roose to tell [[Robb Stark]] that the Lannisters send their regards.<ref>[[The Bear and the Maiden Fair (episode)]]</ref>
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Before Jaime departs for King's Landing, Roose asks Jaime to give his regards to Jaime's father [[Tywin Lannister|Tywin]]. Jaime then asks Roose to tell [[Robb Stark]] that "the Lannisters send their regards".<ref>"[[The Bear and the Maiden Fair (episode)]]"</ref>
   
[[File:Red_wedding_roose_robb.png|thumb|250px|Roose murders Robb in "[[The Rains of Castamere (episode)|The Rains of Castamere]]."]]
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[[File:Red_wedding_roose_robb.png|thumb|left|250px|"The Lannisters send their regards" - Roose murders Robb in "[[The Rains of Castamere (episode)|The Rains of Castamere]]."]]
Afterwards, Roose arrives at [[The Twins]] to attend the wedding of [[Edmure Tully]] and [[Roslin Frey]]. However, he has been secretly plotting with [[House Frey]] to ultimately bring about the downfall of the Starks. During the wedding, Roose stays seated beside Lady Catelyn. She discovers his armor underneath his clothes, and strikes him, telling Robb to run. The Freys [[Red Wedding|turn on]] the Starks, Bolton moves away from the massacre only to later approach Robb and whisper in his ear "the Lannisters send their regards", as he stabs him in the heart.<ref>"[[The Rains of Castamere (episode)|The Rains of Castamere]]"</ref>
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Afterwards, Roose arrives at [[The Twins]] to attend the wedding of [[Edmure Tully]] and [[Roslin Frey]]. However, he has been secretly plotting with [[House Frey]] to ultimately bring about the downfall of the Starks. During the wedding, Roose stays seated beside Lady Catelyn, and just prior to the massacre he directs her gaze to his arm, coaxing her to pull back his sleeve to reveal chain mail underneath. Upon her discovery, he flashes her a sinister grin, revealing that the Starks have been betrayed, causing her to slap him across the face and yell at Robb to run. Bolton runs to safety as the Freys [[Red Wedding|turn on]] the Starks. In the aftermath, he approaches Robb and whispers in his ear "the Lannisters send their regards", as he stabs him in the heart.<ref>"[[The Rains of Castamere (episode)|The Rains of Castamere]]"</ref>
   
After killing Robb, Roose climbs to the top of The Twins and watches the massacre of the [[House Stark|Stark]] forces. The next day, he and [[Walder Frey]] gloat over the deaths of the Starks and the capture of Edmure Tully, though Roose is wary about the escape of [[Brynden Tully]]. Walder comments that it must have been difficult following [[Robb Stark]], and Roose notes that Robb never once listened to his advice. Walder jokingly raises a toast to the Young Wolf, and Roose says that he will now be forever young. Roose then explains to Walder what ''really'' happened at the [[Sack of Winterfell]]: it was actually Roose's bastard son [[Ramsay Snow]], leading a force of Bolton soldiers, who burned Winterfell to the ground. Roose falsely reported to Robb that Theon and the ironborn were responsible to deflect suspicion from the Boltons - while Ramsay captured Theon and has been sadistically torturing him in the Dreadfort's dungeon. Roose decided to betray Robb long ago, after the Lannisters won the [[Battle of the Blackwater]], and was simply feigning loyalty this entire time, even as he was plotting the Starks' destruction.
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After killing Robb, Roose climbs to the top of [[The Twins]] and watches the massacre of the [[House Stark|Stark]] forces. The next day, he and [[Walder Frey]] gloat over the deaths of the Starks and the capture of Edmure Tully, though Roose is wary about the escape of [[Brynden Tully]], concerned that he will reach the safety of Riverrun before he can be found. Walder comments that it must have been difficult following [[Robb Stark]], and Roose notes that Robb never once listened to his advice. Walder jokingly raises a toast to the Young Wolf, and Roose says that he will now be forever young. Roose then explains to Walder what ''really'' happened at the [[Sack of Winterfell]]: it was actually Roose's bastard son [[Ramsay Bolton|Ramsay Snow]], leading a force of Bolton soldiers, who burned Winterfell to the ground. Roose falsely reported to Robb that Theon and the [[ironborn]] were responsible to deflect suspicion from the Boltons - while Ramsay captured Theon and has been sadistically torturing him in the Dreadfort's dungeon. Roose decided to betray Robb long ago, after the Lannisters defeated Stannis Baratheon at the Battle of the Blackwater, and was simply feigning loyalty this entire time, even as he was plotting the Starks' destruction.<ref>"[[Mhysa]]"</ref>
   
As reward for his actions, [[Tywin Lannister]] has made Roose acting Warden of the North until a son of [[Sansa Stark]] and [[Tyrion Lannister]] comes of age.<ref>"[[Mhysa]]"</ref>
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===[[Season 4]]===
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[[File:Roose-Ramsay-Reek.jpg|thumb|right|250px|Roose scolds Ramsay over his treatment of Theon.]]
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Roose is forced to smuggle himself back into his own lands, due to the ironborn holding [[Moat Cailin]]. Arriving at the Dreadfort with his new bride, Roose introduces Lady [[Walda Bolton|Walda]] to his bastard son, [[Ramsay Snow|Ramsay]], before demanding to see the Bolton's [[Theon Greyjoy|prized hostage]]. He is angry with Ramsay for sending terms to [[Balon Greyjoy]] behind his back and for mutilating Theon, as it gives them less leverage over the [[House Greyjoy|Greyjoys]]. He notes that Tywin Lannister might have named him [[Warden of the North]], but he has given him no assistance towards controlling it; the Northerners are still furious over the Boltons' betrayal at the Red Wedding. Bolton is shocked and worried to learn that Theon never actually killed [[Bran Stark|Bran]] and [[Rickon Stark]], which means that if the Northerners discover they are alive they will rally behind ''them''​, not the Boltons. He and Ramsay muse that [[Jon Snow]], who is half-Stark, may be sheltering them, at [[Castle Black]]. Roose orders [[Locke]] to hunt down the remaining Starks and kill them before the Northerners discover that they're alive, though Locke is killed by Bran in the attempt. He then instructs Ramsay to head south with Theon and reclaim Moat Cailin which will allow their army to return north and help them conquer their lands.<ref>"[[The Lion and the Rose]]"</ref>
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[[File:Roose and Ramsay confer.jpg|thumb|right|250px|Ramsay reports his success at Moat Cailin to his father.]]
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Later, Roose and his army meet Ramsay near Moat Cailin where Ramsay presents him with the fortress's flag. Roose instructs Ramsay to walk with him, and they climb a hill. He asks if there has been any word from Locke, and Ramsay answers that there has been nothing. Roose dismisses this as unimportant, speculating that the Stark children are most likely dead. At the top of the hill, Roose points out that the north is larger than all of the other kingdoms combined, and that, thanks to Ramsay's actions, he now has control of it. He then hands Ramsay a document, legitimizing him as Ramsay Bolton. After Ramsay swears to honor him and uphold his traditions, Roose leads his forces towards [[Winterfell]], presumably moving his base of operations to the ruined fortress.<ref>"[[The Mountain and the Viper]]"</ref>
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===[[Season 5]]===
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[[File:Roosemeetssansa.png|thumb|left|246px|Roose Bolton as the new Lord of Winterfell.]]
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Roose Bolton's hold on the North is opposed by the remaining Northern lords, most of whom lost sons and men at the Red Wedding. While scolding Ramsay for needlessly flaying a [[Medger Cerwyn|Northern lord]], along with his wife and brother, alive for refusing to pay their taxes, Roose claims that they do not have enough men to rule the North should the Stark bannermen rise against them, reminding Ramsay that the pact they made was with Tywin Lannister, who is now dead, meaning that the Lannisters will likely no longer support them. He tells Ramsay that the best way to strengthen their hold is not by flaying people and subsequently enraging their loved ones, but by marrying into good families. He has arranged with [[Petyr Baelish]] to have Ramsay marry [[Sansa Stark]].
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[[File:LittlefingerandRoose.png|thumb|229x229px|Roose questions Baelish's true motives]]
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When Baelish and Sansa arrive, Roose greets Sansa with courtesy and she reciprocates, despite knowing he personally killed her brother. Later, while speaking with Baelish, Roose expresses his doubt as to whose side Baelish is truly on and is visibly concerned with reprisals from Cersei should she find out Sansa is marrying Ramsay, though Baelish assures Roose that the Lannisters have lost a great deal of power in the wake of Tywin's death. Roose reveals that he has read a letter sent for Baelish from Cersei before handing it to him, and demands to read Baelish's reply to Cersei before it is sent off.<ref>"[[High Sparrow (episode)]]"</ref>
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While having dinner with Sansa and his family, Roose grows increasingly annoyed with Ramsay when he begins to torture Sansa emotionally by having Reek apologize to her for allegedly murdering Bran and Rickon, and suggesting that Reek give Sansa away at their wedding. Roose turns the tables on Ramsay by revealing that he and Walda are expecting a son.
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[[File:Roose and Ramsay.jpg|thumb|left|229x229px|Roose and Ramsay plan to counter Stannis' coming attack.]]
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Ramsay later confronts Roose about this, and Roose counters by telling Ramsay of his origin: he actually raped [[Unnamed miller's wife|his mother]], a miller's wife who got married without paying Roose homage, and Roose was later visited by the woman carrying Ramsay and claiming he was his son. Roose reveals to Ramsay that he very nearly killed both him and his mother, but stayed himself when he realized by looking into Ramsay's eyes that he was his son after all. Roose then changes the subject to Stannis Baratheon, who is garrisoned at Castle Black but will surely make another attempt for the Iron Throne, for which he will need to take the North from the Boltons. Roose reminds Ramsay that the North is theirs, and they vow to counter the coming attack on Winterfell.<ref>"[[Kill the Boy]]"</ref>
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A few nights later, Roose officiates Sansa and Ramsay's wedding ceremony in the godswood.<ref name="E46">"[[Unbowed, Unbent, Unbroken]]"</ref>
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As Stannis's army approaches Winterfell, Roose discusses how to retaliate with his council. Roose advocates remaining inside the castle to wait out Stannis's siege, since Stannis's army will break before they run out of supplies. Ramsay, however, suggests that his father meet Stannis in open battle to show him how he will deal with Southern invaders. He asks Roose for "twenty good men" as part of a sabotage mission, one that destroys Stannis's supplies, breaks the morale of his army, and causes his sellswords to desert.<ref>"[[Hardhome (episode)]]"</ref>
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Although Stannis is defeated by the Bolton army in the ensuing battle when he reaches Winterfell, it is a pyrrhic victory, since Sansa escapes from Winterfell with Theon, stripping Roose of easily his most powerful political asset.<ref>"[[Mother's Mercy]]"</ref>
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==Personality==
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Roose Bolton is cautious, intelligent, ruthless, and easily capable of unspeakable cruelty.  He has a very calm and calculating personality, never publicly expressing anger, happiness, or sadness. Politically astute, he frequently offered the most pragmatic advice to [[Robb Stark]], albeit the most ruthless (such as recommending that they put prisoners to the sword because they were having difficulty feeding them all).
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When he realized that Robb Stark had no chance of winning the war, he sought an alliance with House Frey and House Lannister. Roose's cold realism clashed with Robb's idealism. When all seemed lost, he did not attempt to fight for a losing cause and instead decided to safeguard his family's future by turning on his king. Roose does value the legacy of House Bolton as something bigger than himself.
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​Roose is a cunning strategist, both on and off the battlefield. His betrayal was sudden and unexpected, and it resulted in the utter decimation of the rebellious Northern lords and their armies while his own forces remained basically intact. This would allow House Bolton to overpower the now defenseless home territories of these other Houses in the North, ensuring Bolton rule.
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Unlike Robb Stark, he believed that he wasn't a lord to indulge his own petty whims and that strengthening his House was his first priority: in that context, he married [[Walda Frey (Fat Walda)|Walda Frey]] to guarantee his alliance with House Frey. As a result, Roose is somewhat critical of his bastard son [[Ramsay Bolton|Ramsay]]'s more wild or shocking actions, because as Roose's only heir, Ramsay represents the future of House Bolton. Roose does enjoy sadistically toying with other people - as seen when he briefly taunted Jaime Lannister that King's Landing might have fallen to Stannis Baratheon - but a major difference between him and Ramsay is that Roose has caution enough to only partake in such amusements when he thinks he can get away with it. Roose is also cautious enough to realize that, despite his success in elevating House Bolton as a [[Great House]] of Westeros, this position is fragile and that only the proper alliances will allow him to retain his power. This is the main reason behind his decision to marry [[Sansa Stark]] to Ramsay and his willingness to consider an alliance with [[Petyr Baelish]] and the Lords of the Vale after [[Tywin Lannister]]'s death.
  +
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==Appearances==
  +
{{Season Two Appearances||||yes||yes|yes|yes}}
  +
{{Season Three Appearances|yes|yes|||yes|yes|yes||yes|yes}}
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{{Season Four Appearances||yes||||||yes}}
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{{Season Five Appearances|||yes||yes|yes|8 = yes|}}
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==Family tree==
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{{House Bolton family tree}}
   
 
==Image Gallery==
 
==Image Gallery==
Line 57: Line 62:
 
Roose.jpg|Roose Bolton's image in the HBO viewer guide.
 
Roose.jpg|Roose Bolton's image in the HBO viewer guide.
 
Roose Bolton.jpg|Roose Bolton confers with King Robb in "[[Garden of Bones]]"
 
Roose Bolton.jpg|Roose Bolton confers with King Robb in "[[Garden of Bones]]"
Stark Bannermen.jpg|Robb Stark and his bannermen in "[[A Man Without Honor]]".
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Stark Bannermen.jpg|Robb Stark and his bannermen, among them Roose, in "[[A Man Without Honor]]".
 
Roose 2x04.jpg|Promotional image of Roose Bolton.
 
Roose 2x04.jpg|Promotional image of Roose Bolton.
Roose-Valar-Dohaeris.jpg|Lord Bolton arrives in Harrenhal with King Robb in "[[Valar Dohaeris]]"
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Bolton-trolls-Jaime.jpg|Roose toys with Jaime, demonstrating his penchant for emotional cruelty.
Roose kills Robb S3 Ep9.jpg|Robb Stark and Roose Bolton in "[[The Rains of Castamere (episode)|The Rains of Castamere]]".
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Roose kills Robb S3 Ep9.jpg|Roose kills Robb in "[[The Rains of Castamere (episode)|The Rains of Castamere]]".
 
Roose Psychopath Smile.jpg|Roose's stilted, fake attempt at a smile in "[[Mhysa]]" indicates his lack of real human emotions.
 
Roose Psychopath Smile.jpg|Roose's stilted, fake attempt at a smile in "[[Mhysa]]" indicates his lack of real human emotions.
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Roose-Bolton-S4XEP08.png|Roose reveals a royal decree of legitimization to Ramsay.
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Roose Ramsay Kill the Boy.jpg|Roose with [[Ramsay Bolton|Ramsay]] in "[[Kill the Boy]]"
 
</gallery>
 
</gallery>
   
==Appearances==
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==Behind the scenes==
{{Season Two Appearances||||yes||yes|yes|yes}}
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In the Season 3 Blu-ray, Roose narrates [[Histories & Lore]] video '''"[[House Bolton (Histories & Lore)|House Bolton]]"'''.
{{Season Three Appearances|yes|yes|||yes|yes|yes||yes|yes}}
 
 
==Family tree==
 
{{House Bolton family tree}}
 
   
 
==Quotes==
 
==Quotes==
  +
'''Spoken by Roose'''
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{{Quote|The Lannisters send their regards.|Roose Bolton to Robb Stark, as he drives a dagger through Robb's heart.|The Rains of Castamere (episode)}}
 
{{Quote|The high road is very pretty, but you'll have a hard time marching your army down it.|Roose Bolton to Robb Stark|Garden of Bones}}
 
{{Quote|The high road is very pretty, but you'll have a hard time marching your army down it.|Roose Bolton to Robb Stark|Garden of Bones}}
 
{{Quote|In my family we say: A naked man has few secrets; a flayed man, none.|Roose Bolton|Garden of Bones}}
 
{{Quote|In my family we say: A naked man has few secrets; a flayed man, none.|Roose Bolton|Garden of Bones}}
Line 73: Line 82:
 
{{Quote|You're in no place to insist on anything. I would have hoped you'd learned your lesson about overplaying your... position.|Roose Bolton to Jaime Lannister|The Climb}}
 
{{Quote|You're in no place to insist on anything. I would have hoped you'd learned your lesson about overplaying your... position.|Roose Bolton to Jaime Lannister|The Climb}}
 
{{Dialogue a-b-a|Roose Bolton|Lord Walder let me choose any of his granddaughters and promised me the girl's weight in silver as a dowry, so I have a fat young bride.|Catelyn Stark|I hope she makes you very happy.|Well she's made me very rich.|Roose Bolton discusses his new wife at the [[Red Wedding]].|The Rains of Castamere (episode)}}
 
{{Dialogue a-b-a|Roose Bolton|Lord Walder let me choose any of his granddaughters and promised me the girl's weight in silver as a dowry, so I have a fat young bride.|Catelyn Stark|I hope she makes you very happy.|Well she's made me very rich.|Roose Bolton discusses his new wife at the [[Red Wedding]].|The Rains of Castamere (episode)}}
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{{Quote|The North is larger than the other six kingdoms combined. And I am the Warden of the North. The North is <u>mine</u>.|Roose to Ramsay Bolton|The Mountain and the Viper}}
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{{Quote|Stop eating and <u>listen</u>.|Roose to [[Ramsay Bolton|Ramsay]]|High Sparrow (episode)}}
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{{Quote|We've become a [[Great House]] by entering into alliances with [[House Frey|other]] [[House Lannister|houses]], and piling those alliances into greater power. The ''best'' way to forge a lasting alliance isn't by peeling a man's skin off. The best way is marriage.|Roose to Ramsay.|High Sparrow (episode)}}
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{{Quote|I'd like to read the reply.|Roose to [[Petyr Baelish|Littlefinger]]|High Sparrow (episode)}}
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{{Quote|I imagine you're familiar with the procedure.|Roose to [[Ramsay]]|Kill the Boy}}
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{{Quote|She was a peasant girl, pretty in a common sort of way. She was the miller's wife. Apparently they married without my knowledge or consent. So I had him hanged and I took her beneath the three where he was swaying. She fought me the whole time. She was lucky I didn't hang her too. A year later she came to my gates with a squalling baby in her arms. A baby she claimed was mine. I nearly had her whipped, and the child thrown to the river. But then I looked at you. And I saw then what I see now. You are my son.|Roose telling Ramsay the story about how he met his mother|Kill the Boy}}
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{{Quote|[[Stannis Baratheon]] has an army at [[Castle Black]] but he won't stay for long. He wants the [[Iron Throne]] and the road to [[King's Landing]] comes right through [[Winterfell]]. He means to take the [[North]] but the North is ours. It's yours and mine. Will you help me defeat him?|Roose to Ramsay Bolton|Kill the Boy}}
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'''Spoken about Roose'''
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{{Quote|My mother taught me not to throw stones at cripples... but my father taught me, 'aim for their head'!|Roose's son Ramsay to [[Theon Greyjoy]]|Mhysa}}
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{{Quote|The traitor who plunged a dagger in Robb Stark's heart...I shall take back the North from the [[House Bolton|thieves]] who stole it. Tywin Lannister is dead. He can't protect them now. I shall mount Roose Bolton's head on a spike.|[[Stannis Baratheon]] to [[Jon Snow]]|The Wars to Come}}
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{{Quote|I will skin him and his bastard like that wretch on their bloody sigil!|[[Cersei Lannister]] vows to have Roose and Ramsay flayed after learning they have [[Sansa Stark]]|Unbowed, Unbent, Unbroken}}
   
 
==In the books==
 
==In the books==
In the ''[[A Song of Ice and Fire]]'' novels, Roose Bolton is noted for his practice of having regular leechings, which he believes improves his health and has earned him the nickname of "the Leech Lord". He's also noted for being extremely pale skinned and also soft spoken thus forcing those who listen to do so intently. He is also described as being mild mannered, but cunning, calculating and capable of great cruelty.
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In the ''[[A Song of Ice and Fire]]'' novels, Roose Bolton is noted for his practice of having regular leechings, which he believes improves his health and has earned him the nickname of "the Leech Lord". He is extremely pale skinned, some say due to his leechings. As in the TV series, he is also a teetotaler, refusing wine and ale and drinking only hippocras. Roose intentionally speaks very softly, thus forcing those who listen to do so intently. He's described as being mild mannered, but also cold, calculating, and capable of great cruelty. Several characters describe him as not possessing real human emotions, and he never raises his voice in anger even when frustrated or threatened - instead, he will silently stare intently at whoever offended him, mentally calculating how to destroy them. According to Jaime, Roose's silence is a hundred times more threatening than [[Locke|Vargo Hoat]]'s slobbering malevolence. Theon Greyjoy used to mock Roose's silence during Robb's war councils, but after being held a prisoner in the Dreadfort and after Roose's participation in the betrayal at the Red Wedding, he sees Lord Bolton for what he really is, and notes that one only has to look at Roose to realize that he has more cruelty in his pinky toe than all of the Freys combined. Despite his penchant for cruelty, he's rather discreet about it, thus his personal motto of "a peaceful land, a quiet people."
   
During [[Robert's Rebellion]], Bolton joined the rebels and participated in the [[Battle of the Trident]]. After the battle he suggested [[Robert Baratheon]] to execute the imprisoned Ser [[Barristan Selmy]], who had fought for the royalist army and had been severely injured. Robert, however, recognized Selmy's courage and sent his personal [[maester]] to treat him.
+
During [[Robert's Rebellion]], Bolton followed his liege lord Ned Stark and participated in the [[Battle of the Trident]]. After the battle he suggested to [[Robert Baratheon]] that he execute the captured Ser [[Barristan Selmy]], who had fought for the royalist army and had been severely injured. Robert, however, was impressed by Selmy's courage and sent his personal [[maester]] to treat him.
   
Roose had two wives. Nothing is known about his first wife (other than that he apparently had no children by her). His second wife was Bethany Ryswell, sister of [[Barbrey Ryswell|Lady Dustin]], and mother of Domeric Bolton, who died from a sickness of the bowels. Bethany died of fever two years after her son.
+
Prior to marrying Fat Walda, Roose had two wives. Nothing is known about his first wife (other than that he apparently had no children by her). His second wife was Bethany Ryswell, sister of [[Barbrey Ryswell|Lady Dustin]], and mother of Domeric Bolton, who died from a sickness of the bowels (Roose suspects that Ramsay killed him). Bethany died of fever two years after her son. Roose does mention in passing once that Domeric actually had at least two brothers, but they all died in the cradle.
   
Roose is also the commander of the northern forces at the [[Battle of the Green Fork]], which differed from the TV series' portrayal of the conflict. Roose Bolton met [[Tywin Lannister|Tywin]]'s host of 20,000 with a diversionary force of 16,000, retreating in good order after their surprise attack had failed and they had bought enough time for Robb Stark's success at the [[Battle of the Whispering Wood]]. Northern casualties were relatively light, though several of their lords were either killed or captured.
+
During the War of the Five Kings, Roose is the commander of the northern forces at the [[Battle of the Green Fork]], which differs from the TV series' portrayal of the conflict. Roose Bolton meets [[Tywin Lannister|Tywin]]'s host of 20,000 with a diversionary force of 16,000, retreating in good order after their surprise attack had failed and they had bought enough time for Robb Stark's success at the [[Battle of the Whispering Wood]]. Northern casualties were relatively light, though several of their lords are either killed or captured.
   
Roose's army continues to operate independently of Robb Stark's. When [[Tywin Lannister]] leaves [[Harrenhal]] on his way to [[King's Landing]], Roose quickly marches his army in to occupy the castle. Arya ends up serving Roose as his cupbearer, but was unnerved by his use of regular leechings. She decides to leave the castle incognito instead of revealing her true identity, despite Roose's position as a vassal to her brother.
+
Roose's army, based at the Twins, continues to operate independently of Robb Stark's. When [[Tywin Lannister]] leaves [[Harrenhal]] on his way to [[King's Landing]], Roose quickly marches his army in to occupy the castle after cutting a deal with the Brave Companions. Arya ends up serving Roose as his [[cupbearer]], but is unnerved by his use of regular leechings. She decides to leave the castle incognito instead of revealing her true identity, despite Roose's position as a vassal to her brother.
  +
  +
After the Fall of Winterfell and the Battle of the Blackwater, Roose decides to betray King Robb. To weaken the Northern Houses and set up his own push to take over the North, he intentionally sends the forces under his command on suicide missions, to kill off as many Stark loyalists as possible. He puts about a third of his forces, three thousand men, under the command of Robett Glover and Ser Helman Tallhart, and sends them on a risky attack against [[Duskendale]] (possibly having outright forwarned the Lannisters via messenger-raven). At Duskendale they are surrounded by a combined Lannister-Tyrell army and annihilated, destroying most of the remaining Northern infantry in the process (though Robett Glover himself was taken prisoner). Bolton claimed to Robb that Glover and Tallhart carried out the attack on their own initiative, diverting blame from him and keeping his treachery secret. He then retreated his remaining six thousand men from Harrenhal back towards the Twins, but he intentionally marched his force too slowly, so that when they had to cross the [[Trident]] River at the [[Ruby Ford]], his rearguard was caught out of position on the southern side of the river when the Lannister army led by Ser [[Gregor Clegane]] arrived. Clegane's men slaughtered the rearguard, which made up about one third of the remaining Northerners after Duskendale (roughly two thousand men). This move left Roose commanding a force of five hundred mounted and three thousand infantry, most of them his personal feudal levies from House Bolton's lands. By sending out the soldiers of other Northern Houses to die ahead of his own, the military strength of the rest of the North was crippled while Roose's own Bolton army was virtually unscathed. The surviving force also contained some elements sworn to [[House Karstark]], at a time when the Karstarks had lost their lord to King Robb's justice and thus their loyalty was left in doubt.
  +
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During the Red Wedding, Roose leaves the feast prior to the massacre and returns in full armor leading similarly armed Bolton soldiers - for a split second the surviving Northern bannermen in the hall think he has arrived to help them, but Roose and his men then join the Freys in attacking the other Northerners. After Catelyn's final confrontation with Walder Frey, Roose personally kills Robb Stark by driving his sword through his heart (not simply a dagger as in the TV series). Roose's final words to Robb in the books are "Jaime Lannister sends his regards" instead of "The Lannisters send their regards" as in the TV series - this slight change was apparently made so viewers would not mistakenly think Jaime had anything to do with the Red Wedding, which he did not.
  +
  +
Another of Roose's customs is to burn not only letters but also entire books as soon as he's finished with them. Author George R.R. Martin has said that this is meant to be a microcosm of the entire character: Roose is so selfish, calculating, and ruthless that he would destroy a valuable book to preserve the advantage in knowledge it gave him over other people. Roose will destroy any advantage, even ''potential'' advantage, rather than let it continue to exist and run the danger that it might one day aid his enemies.
   
 
==See also==
 
==See also==
*[http://awoiaf.westeros.org/index.php/Roose_Bolton Roose Bolton at the Wiki of Ice and Fire] (MAJOR spoilers from the books)
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* {{AWOIAF}} (MAJOR spoilers from the books)
   
 
==References==
 
==References==
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Latest revision as of 20:32, August 28, 2015

Bolton mini shield
Bolton mini shield
Roose Bolton
Roose Bolton-S05E06
Season(s) 2, 3, 4, 5, 6
First seen "Garden of Bones"
Appeared in 17 episodes (see below)
Titles Lord of the Dreadfort
Warden of the North
Lord Paramount of the North
Lord of Winterfell
Status Alive
Origin The Dreadfort
Allegiance House Bolton
Culture Northmen
Religion Old Gods of the Forest
Family {Domeric Bolton} - trueborn son
Ramsay Bolton - legitimized bastard son
Walda Bolton - wife
Sansa Stark - daughter-in-law
Walder Frey - grandfather-in-law
unborn child
Portrayed by Michael McElhatton
"In my family we say: A naked man has few secrets; a flayed man, none."
―Roose Bolton[src]

Lord Roose Bolton is a major character in the fifth and sixth seasons. He initially appeared as a recurring character in the second, third and fourth seasons. He is played by Michael McElhatton and debuts in "Garden of Bones." Roose Bolton is the Lord of the Dreadfort and the head of House Bolton. He is also the father of Ramsay Bolton, his legitimized bastard, and an unborn son from his wife, Walda Frey.

A powerful bannerman of House Stark of Winterfell, Roose answers the summons of Robb Stark after his liege lord, Eddard Stark, is arrested in King's Landing. Fighting alongside Robb Stark, Roose eventually betrays him after the decisive Lannister victory at the Battle of the Blackwater. The Boltons, in an alliance with House Frey, kill most of the Northern army at the infamous Red Wedding, with Roose killing Robb Stark himself.

As a reward for his betrayal, Roose is appointed the new Warden of the North by Tywin Lannister and sets about reclaiming his new lands from the invading ironborn. Reclaiming Moat Cailin and securing greater legitimacy by marrying Ramsay to Sansa Stark, Roose's position is later threatened by Stannis Baratheon, who seeks to rally the North to his cause in his campaign to retake the Iron Throne. However, due to the approaching winter and a weakened army, the Boltons are able to defeat Stannis, although it is a pyrrhic victory, since during the battle, Sansa escapes from Winterfell with the help of Roose and Ramsay's prisoner, Theon Greyjoy, severely weakening the Boltons' hold on the North.

BiographyEdit

BackgroundEdit

Roose Bolton is the head of House Bolton, a vassal family to House Stark of Winterfell. He is the Lord of the Dreadfort. Roose takes pride in his house sigil; the flayed man. Although torture is outlawed in the North, his family is famous for flaying the skin from their enemies as a means of torture and execution. Roose fought for Lord Eddard Stark in the civil war known as Robert's Rebellion and proved his worth as a soldier in the Battle of the Trident.[1]

Roose-Bolton-bannerman

Roose Bolton: A seemingly loyal Stark bannerman.

Roose Bolton had a trueborn son, Domeric, who perished, forcing Roose to rely on his bastard son, Ramsay Snow.[2]

Season 1Edit

House Bolton banners are present among Robb Stark's forces as they assemble at Winterfell and march south to fight House Lannister following the imprisonment and execution of Lord Eddard Stark.[3][4] Robb is proclaimed King in the North by his bannermen following the death of Eddard, although Roose is not present.[4]

Season 2Edit

Roose fights for King Robb Stark in his decisive victory at the Battle of Oxcross. The following morning Roose reports that they killed five Lannister men for every casualty they suffered. He expresses concern over the volume of prisoners they have taken, saying that they are struggling to feed their own men. Robb insists that the prisoners be treated well and rejects Roose’s suggestion that they torture the officers, reminding him that the Boltons' traditional practice of flaying their enemies is outlawed in the North. Roose warns Robb that the high road is pretty but difficult. Robb counters that he is treating his prisoners as he hopes the Lannisters will treat his sisters.[5]

Roosethemessanger

Lord Bolton delivers news of Winterfell's capture in "The Old Gods and the New".

They come across a nurse, Talisa Maegyr, and a silent sister treating a wounded Lannister soldier. The healer is preparing to amputate his leg to prevent a wound infection spreading. The soldier is begging her not to proceed but she insists on the necessity of amputation. Roose criticizes her spending time on the Lannister soldiers and she retorts that the Northmen are not her men. Robb helps to restrain the wounded man as she saws off his lower leg.[5]

He later brings Robb and Catelyn Stark news of Winterfell's fall at the hands of the turncloak Theon Greyjoy. He reports that there is no news of Robb's brothers, but that Ser Rodrik Cassel has been killed. An enraged Robb declares that he must return north to retake his castle and save his brothers, but Roose counters that they have the Lannisters on the retreat, and must continue their offensive. He tells the King that he can have his bastard son, Ramsay Snow, muster several hundred men to retake Winterfell. Robb relents, but orders that the safety of his brothers is paramount. Robb insists that Theon must be brought to him alive so he can inquire as to why he betrayed the North - and so that Robb can execute him personally.[6]

Robb Stark and Roose Bolton

Robb Stark and Roose Bolton discuss plans to recapture Winterfell in "The Prince of Winterfell".

After the Battle of the Yellow Fork Robb's bannermen gather to hear Queen Regent Cersei Lannister's rejection of their peace terms. They complain that the prison cells are overflowing. Robb leaves the camp with a small force to negotiate the surrender of the Crag.[7] Catelyn releases Jaime Lannister, enraging Robb and his bannermen and resulting in her being placed under guard. Roose meets with Robb to discuss the situation of Winterfell. Robb details a plan to offer mercy to Theon's men so that they will abandon him allowing them to retake the castle with minimal bloodshed. Roose is confident that it will work. Their discussion is interrupted by Talisa and Roose leaves them alone.[8]

Season 3Edit

Roose-and-Robb-3x01

Robb Stark and Roose Bolton discuss their attack on Harrenhal in "Valar Dohaeris."

Roose, along with the rest of the Northern host, arrives at Harrenhal, finding the ruined castle abandoned and the captives slain, save for a man in maester robes named Qyburn. While Robb and Talisa attend to the man's injuries, Roose discusses Jaime Lannister's escape with Rickard Karstark, and assures him that the dead will be avenged in time.[9]

Messenger-ravens come to Harrenhal bearing news of Hoster Tully's death, and of Winterfell's destruction. Roose delivers the messages to Robb, who charges Bolton with holding Harrenhal with a portion of the Northern army, while he and the bulk of his forces ride for Riverrun.[10]

Roose's minion, Locke, successfully recaptures Jaime Lannister, and delivers him to his Lord at Harrenhal. Roose is visibly angered at Jaime's mutilated state. Jaime asks Roose about Cersei. In a moment of callousness, Roose explains the details of the Battle of the Blackwater, in which Stannis Baratheon attacked King's Landing, and appears on the verge of telling Jaime that Cersei is dead, only to tell him that Tywin Lannister arrived at the last minute and fought Stannis off. Jaime's relief sends him to his knees, visibly amusing Roose.[11]

Lannister-enimity-means-little-to-Bolton

Roose negotiates with Jaime and Brienne in "The Climb".

Roose negotiates with Jaime and Brienne of Tarth over dinner. Bolton weighs up his options; bluntly informing his captives that the safest course of action would simply be to murder both of them, and discreetly dispose of their bodies. Although Jaime attempts to sway Roose by reminding him of the consequences of crossing his father, Roose is unperturbed at the prospect of having Lord Tywin as an enemy, as the war is keeping him fully occupied. Ultimately Roose relents, agreeing to release Jaime, and return him safely to King's Landing on the condition that he inform his father that Bolton had no part in the loss of Jaime's hand. He also retains Brienne as a hostage, stating his intention to charge her with treason.[12]

Before Jaime departs for King's Landing, Roose asks Jaime to give his regards to Jaime's father Tywin. Jaime then asks Roose to tell Robb Stark that "the Lannisters send their regards".[13]

Red wedding roose robb

"The Lannisters send their regards" - Roose murders Robb in "The Rains of Castamere."

Afterwards, Roose arrives at The Twins to attend the wedding of Edmure Tully and Roslin Frey. However, he has been secretly plotting with House Frey to ultimately bring about the downfall of the Starks. During the wedding, Roose stays seated beside Lady Catelyn, and just prior to the massacre he directs her gaze to his arm, coaxing her to pull back his sleeve to reveal chain mail underneath. Upon her discovery, he flashes her a sinister grin, revealing that the Starks have been betrayed, causing her to slap him across the face and yell at Robb to run. Bolton runs to safety as the Freys turn on the Starks. In the aftermath, he approaches Robb and whispers in his ear "the Lannisters send their regards", as he stabs him in the heart.[14]

After killing Robb, Roose climbs to the top of The Twins and watches the massacre of the Stark forces. The next day, he and Walder Frey gloat over the deaths of the Starks and the capture of Edmure Tully, though Roose is wary about the escape of Brynden Tully, concerned that he will reach the safety of Riverrun before he can be found. Walder comments that it must have been difficult following Robb Stark, and Roose notes that Robb never once listened to his advice. Walder jokingly raises a toast to the Young Wolf, and Roose says that he will now be forever young. Roose then explains to Walder what really happened at the Sack of Winterfell: it was actually Roose's bastard son Ramsay Snow, leading a force of Bolton soldiers, who burned Winterfell to the ground. Roose falsely reported to Robb that Theon and the ironborn were responsible to deflect suspicion from the Boltons - while Ramsay captured Theon and has been sadistically torturing him in the Dreadfort's dungeon. Roose decided to betray Robb long ago, after the Lannisters defeated Stannis Baratheon at the Battle of the Blackwater, and was simply feigning loyalty this entire time, even as he was plotting the Starks' destruction.[15]

Season 4Edit

Roose-Ramsay-Reek

Roose scolds Ramsay over his treatment of Theon.

Roose is forced to smuggle himself back into his own lands, due to the ironborn holding Moat Cailin. Arriving at the Dreadfort with his new bride, Roose introduces Lady Walda to his bastard son, Ramsay, before demanding to see the Bolton's prized hostage. He is angry with Ramsay for sending terms to Balon Greyjoy behind his back and for mutilating Theon, as it gives them less leverage over the Greyjoys. He notes that Tywin Lannister might have named him Warden of the North, but he has given him no assistance towards controlling it; the Northerners are still furious over the Boltons' betrayal at the Red Wedding. Bolton is shocked and worried to learn that Theon never actually killed Bran and Rickon Stark, which means that if the Northerners discover they are alive they will rally behind them​, not the Boltons. He and Ramsay muse that Jon Snow, who is half-Stark, may be sheltering them, at Castle Black. Roose orders Locke to hunt down the remaining Starks and kill them before the Northerners discover that they're alive, though Locke is killed by Bran in the attempt. He then instructs Ramsay to head south with Theon and reclaim Moat Cailin which will allow their army to return north and help them conquer their lands.[16]

Roose and Ramsay confer

Ramsay reports his success at Moat Cailin to his father.

Later, Roose and his army meet Ramsay near Moat Cailin where Ramsay presents him with the fortress's flag. Roose instructs Ramsay to walk with him, and they climb a hill. He asks if there has been any word from Locke, and Ramsay answers that there has been nothing. Roose dismisses this as unimportant, speculating that the Stark children are most likely dead. At the top of the hill, Roose points out that the north is larger than all of the other kingdoms combined, and that, thanks to Ramsay's actions, he now has control of it. He then hands Ramsay a document, legitimizing him as Ramsay Bolton. After Ramsay swears to honor him and uphold his traditions, Roose leads his forces towards Winterfell, presumably moving his base of operations to the ruined fortress.[17]

Season 5Edit

Roosemeetssansa

Roose Bolton as the new Lord of Winterfell.

Roose Bolton's hold on the North is opposed by the remaining Northern lords, most of whom lost sons and men at the Red Wedding. While scolding Ramsay for needlessly flaying a Northern lord, along with his wife and brother, alive for refusing to pay their taxes, Roose claims that they do not have enough men to rule the North should the Stark bannermen rise against them, reminding Ramsay that the pact they made was with Tywin Lannister, who is now dead, meaning that the Lannisters will likely no longer support them. He tells Ramsay that the best way to strengthen their hold is not by flaying people and subsequently enraging their loved ones, but by marrying into good families. He has arranged with Petyr Baelish to have Ramsay marry Sansa Stark.

LittlefingerandRoose

Roose questions Baelish's true motives

When Baelish and Sansa arrive, Roose greets Sansa with courtesy and she reciprocates, despite knowing he personally killed her brother. Later, while speaking with Baelish, Roose expresses his doubt as to whose side Baelish is truly on and is visibly concerned with reprisals from Cersei should she find out Sansa is marrying Ramsay, though Baelish assures Roose that the Lannisters have lost a great deal of power in the wake of Tywin's death. Roose reveals that he has read a letter sent for Baelish from Cersei before handing it to him, and demands to read Baelish's reply to Cersei before it is sent off.[18]

While having dinner with Sansa and his family, Roose grows increasingly annoyed with Ramsay when he begins to torture Sansa emotionally by having Reek apologize to her for allegedly murdering Bran and Rickon, and suggesting that Reek give Sansa away at their wedding. Roose turns the tables on Ramsay by revealing that he and Walda are expecting a son.

Roose and Ramsay

Roose and Ramsay plan to counter Stannis' coming attack.

Ramsay later confronts Roose about this, and Roose counters by telling Ramsay of his origin: he actually raped his mother, a miller's wife who got married without paying Roose homage, and Roose was later visited by the woman carrying Ramsay and claiming he was his son. Roose reveals to Ramsay that he very nearly killed both him and his mother, but stayed himself when he realized by looking into Ramsay's eyes that he was his son after all. Roose then changes the subject to Stannis Baratheon, who is garrisoned at Castle Black but will surely make another attempt for the Iron Throne, for which he will need to take the North from the Boltons. Roose reminds Ramsay that the North is theirs, and they vow to counter the coming attack on Winterfell.[19]

A few nights later, Roose officiates Sansa and Ramsay's wedding ceremony in the godswood.[20]

As Stannis's army approaches Winterfell, Roose discusses how to retaliate with his council. Roose advocates remaining inside the castle to wait out Stannis's siege, since Stannis's army will break before they run out of supplies. Ramsay, however, suggests that his father meet Stannis in open battle to show him how he will deal with Southern invaders. He asks Roose for "twenty good men" as part of a sabotage mission, one that destroys Stannis's supplies, breaks the morale of his army, and causes his sellswords to desert.[21]

Although Stannis is defeated by the Bolton army in the ensuing battle when he reaches Winterfell, it is a pyrrhic victory, since Sansa escapes from Winterfell with Theon, stripping Roose of easily his most powerful political asset.[22]

PersonalityEdit

Roose Bolton is cautious, intelligent, ruthless, and easily capable of unspeakable cruelty.  He has a very calm and calculating personality, never publicly expressing anger, happiness, or sadness. Politically astute, he frequently offered the most pragmatic advice to Robb Stark, albeit the most ruthless (such as recommending that they put prisoners to the sword because they were having difficulty feeding them all).

When he realized that Robb Stark had no chance of winning the war, he sought an alliance with House Frey and House Lannister. Roose's cold realism clashed with Robb's idealism. When all seemed lost, he did not attempt to fight for a losing cause and instead decided to safeguard his family's future by turning on his king. Roose does value the legacy of House Bolton as something bigger than himself.

​Roose is a cunning strategist, both on and off the battlefield. His betrayal was sudden and unexpected, and it resulted in the utter decimation of the rebellious Northern lords and their armies while his own forces remained basically intact. This would allow House Bolton to overpower the now defenseless home territories of these other Houses in the North, ensuring Bolton rule.

Unlike Robb Stark, he believed that he wasn't a lord to indulge his own petty whims and that strengthening his House was his first priority: in that context, he married Walda Frey to guarantee his alliance with House Frey. As a result, Roose is somewhat critical of his bastard son Ramsay's more wild or shocking actions, because as Roose's only heir, Ramsay represents the future of House Bolton. Roose does enjoy sadistically toying with other people - as seen when he briefly taunted Jaime Lannister that King's Landing might have fallen to Stannis Baratheon - but a major difference between him and Ramsay is that Roose has caution enough to only partake in such amusements when he thinks he can get away with it. Roose is also cautious enough to realize that, despite his success in elevating House Bolton as a Great House of Westeros, this position is fragile and that only the proper alliances will allow him to retain his power. This is the main reason behind his decision to marry Sansa Stark to Ramsay and his willingness to consider an alliance with Petyr Baelish and the Lords of the Vale after Tywin Lannister's death.

AppearancesEdit

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

Family treeEdit

 
 
 
 
Unknown tree
Unnamed
miller's wife

Deceased
 
Roose-Bolton-family-tree
Roose Bolton
 
Fat-Walda-Frey-family-tree
Walda Bolton
née Frey Frey-small
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
Ramsay-Snow-family-tree-2
Ramsay Bolton
 

Image GalleryEdit

Behind the scenesEdit

In the Season 3 Blu-ray, Roose narrates Histories & Lore video "House Bolton".

QuotesEdit

Spoken by Roose

"The Lannisters send their regards."
―Roose Bolton to Robb Stark, as he drives a dagger through Robb's heart.[src]
"The high road is very pretty, but you'll have a hard time marching your army down it."
―Roose Bolton to Robb Stark[src]
"In my family we say: A naked man has few secrets; a flayed man, none."
―Roose Bolton[src]
"A touch of mercy is a virtue, Your Grace; too much..."
―Roose Bolton to Robb Stark[src]
"You're in no place to insist on anything. I would have hoped you'd learned your lesson about overplaying your... position."
―Roose Bolton to Jaime Lannister[src]
Roose Bolton: "Lord Walder let me choose any of his granddaughters and promised me the girl's weight in silver as a dowry, so I have a fat young bride."
Catelyn Stark: "I hope she makes you very happy."
Roose Bolton: "Well she's made me very rich."
— Roose Bolton discusses his new wife at the Red Wedding.[src]
"The North is larger than the other six kingdoms combined. And I am the Warden of the North. The North is mine."
―Roose to Ramsay Bolton[src]
"Stop eating and listen."
―Roose to Ramsay[src]
"We've become a Great House by entering into alliances with other houses, and piling those alliances into greater power. The best way to forge a lasting alliance isn't by peeling a man's skin off. The best way is marriage."
―Roose to Ramsay.[src]
"I'd like to read the reply."
―Roose to Littlefinger[src]
"I imagine you're familiar with the procedure."
―Roose to Ramsay[src]
"She was a peasant girl, pretty in a common sort of way. She was the miller's wife. Apparently they married without my knowledge or consent. So I had him hanged and I took her beneath the three where he was swaying. She fought me the whole time. She was lucky I didn't hang her too. A year later she came to my gates with a squalling baby in her arms. A baby she claimed was mine. I nearly had her whipped, and the child thrown to the river. But then I looked at you. And I saw then what I see now. You are my son."
―Roose telling Ramsay the story about how he met his mother[src]
"Stannis Baratheon has an army at Castle Black but he won't stay for long. He wants the Iron Throne and the road to King's Landing comes right through Winterfell. He means to take the North but the North is ours. It's yours and mine. Will you help me defeat him?"
―Roose to Ramsay Bolton[src]

Spoken about Roose

"My mother taught me not to throw stones at cripples... but my father taught me, 'aim for their head'!"
―Roose's son Ramsay to Theon Greyjoy[src]
"The traitor who plunged a dagger in Robb Stark's heart...I shall take back the North from the thieves who stole it. Tywin Lannister is dead. He can't protect them now. I shall mount Roose Bolton's head on a spike."
Stannis Baratheon to Jon Snow[src]
"I will skin him and his bastard like that wretch on their bloody sigil!"
Cersei Lannister vows to have Roose and Ramsay flayed after learning they have Sansa Stark[src]

In the booksEdit

In the A Song of Ice and Fire novels, Roose Bolton is noted for his practice of having regular leechings, which he believes improves his health and has earned him the nickname of "the Leech Lord". He is extremely pale skinned, some say due to his leechings. As in the TV series, he is also a teetotaler, refusing wine and ale and drinking only hippocras. Roose intentionally speaks very softly, thus forcing those who listen to do so intently. He's described as being mild mannered, but also cold, calculating, and capable of great cruelty. Several characters describe him as not possessing real human emotions, and he never raises his voice in anger even when frustrated or threatened - instead, he will silently stare intently at whoever offended him, mentally calculating how to destroy them. According to Jaime, Roose's silence is a hundred times more threatening than Vargo Hoat's slobbering malevolence. Theon Greyjoy used to mock Roose's silence during Robb's war councils, but after being held a prisoner in the Dreadfort and after Roose's participation in the betrayal at the Red Wedding, he sees Lord Bolton for what he really is, and notes that one only has to look at Roose to realize that he has more cruelty in his pinky toe than all of the Freys combined. Despite his penchant for cruelty, he's rather discreet about it, thus his personal motto of "a peaceful land, a quiet people."

During Robert's Rebellion, Bolton followed his liege lord Ned Stark and participated in the Battle of the Trident. After the battle he suggested to Robert Baratheon that he execute the captured Ser Barristan Selmy, who had fought for the royalist army and had been severely injured. Robert, however, was impressed by Selmy's courage and sent his personal maester to treat him.

Prior to marrying Fat Walda, Roose had two wives. Nothing is known about his first wife (other than that he apparently had no children by her). His second wife was Bethany Ryswell, sister of Lady Dustin, and mother of Domeric Bolton, who died from a sickness of the bowels (Roose suspects that Ramsay killed him). Bethany died of fever two years after her son. Roose does mention in passing once that Domeric actually had at least two brothers, but they all died in the cradle.

During the War of the Five Kings, Roose is the commander of the northern forces at the Battle of the Green Fork, which differs from the TV series' portrayal of the conflict. Roose Bolton meets Tywin's host of 20,000 with a diversionary force of 16,000, retreating in good order after their surprise attack had failed and they had bought enough time for Robb Stark's success at the Battle of the Whispering Wood. Northern casualties were relatively light, though several of their lords are either killed or captured.

Roose's army, based at the Twins, continues to operate independently of Robb Stark's. When Tywin Lannister leaves Harrenhal on his way to King's Landing, Roose quickly marches his army in to occupy the castle after cutting a deal with the Brave Companions. Arya ends up serving Roose as his cupbearer, but is unnerved by his use of regular leechings. She decides to leave the castle incognito instead of revealing her true identity, despite Roose's position as a vassal to her brother.

After the Fall of Winterfell and the Battle of the Blackwater, Roose decides to betray King Robb. To weaken the Northern Houses and set up his own push to take over the North, he intentionally sends the forces under his command on suicide missions, to kill off as many Stark loyalists as possible. He puts about a third of his forces, three thousand men, under the command of Robett Glover and Ser Helman Tallhart, and sends them on a risky attack against Duskendale (possibly having outright forwarned the Lannisters via messenger-raven). At Duskendale they are surrounded by a combined Lannister-Tyrell army and annihilated, destroying most of the remaining Northern infantry in the process (though Robett Glover himself was taken prisoner). Bolton claimed to Robb that Glover and Tallhart carried out the attack on their own initiative, diverting blame from him and keeping his treachery secret. He then retreated his remaining six thousand men from Harrenhal back towards the Twins, but he intentionally marched his force too slowly, so that when they had to cross the Trident River at the Ruby Ford, his rearguard was caught out of position on the southern side of the river when the Lannister army led by Ser Gregor Clegane arrived. Clegane's men slaughtered the rearguard, which made up about one third of the remaining Northerners after Duskendale (roughly two thousand men). This move left Roose commanding a force of five hundred mounted and three thousand infantry, most of them his personal feudal levies from House Bolton's lands. By sending out the soldiers of other Northern Houses to die ahead of his own, the military strength of the rest of the North was crippled while Roose's own Bolton army was virtually unscathed. The surviving force also contained some elements sworn to House Karstark, at a time when the Karstarks had lost their lord to King Robb's justice and thus their loyalty was left in doubt.

During the Red Wedding, Roose leaves the feast prior to the massacre and returns in full armor leading similarly armed Bolton soldiers - for a split second the surviving Northern bannermen in the hall think he has arrived to help them, but Roose and his men then join the Freys in attacking the other Northerners. After Catelyn's final confrontation with Walder Frey, Roose personally kills Robb Stark by driving his sword through his heart (not simply a dagger as in the TV series). Roose's final words to Robb in the books are "Jaime Lannister sends his regards" instead of "The Lannisters send their regards" as in the TV series - this slight change was apparently made so viewers would not mistakenly think Jaime had anything to do with the Red Wedding, which he did not.

Another of Roose's customs is to burn not only letters but also entire books as soon as he's finished with them. Author George R.R. Martin has said that this is meant to be a microcosm of the entire character: Roose is so selfish, calculating, and ruthless that he would destroy a valuable book to preserve the advantage in knowledge it gave him over other people. Roose will destroy any advantage, even potential advantage, rather than let it continue to exist and run the danger that it might one day aid his enemies.

See alsoEdit

ReferencesEdit

v  d  e
Lord: Lord Roose Bolton Heir: Ramsay Bolton
Bolton mini flag
Seat: Winterfell
The Dreadfort
Lands: The North
Title(s): Red King (former) · Lord of the Dreadfort · Warden of the North · Lord Paramount of the North · Lord of Winterfell
Ancestors:Rogar Bolton
Current members:Walda Bolton · Sansa Stark
Deceased members:Domeric Bolton
Household:{Locke} · Steelshanks · {Myranda} · {Tansy} · {Violet} · {Master Torturer} · Maester Wolkan
Overlord:House Baratheon of King's Landing

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