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"The Dothraki" is part of the Histories & Lore, a special feature in the Blu-ray of Season 6 of Game of Thrones. It is narrated by Iain Glen as Ser Jorah Mormont.

Synopsis

Jorah Mormont explains the rise of the Dothraki after the Doom of Valyria.

Narration

Jorah Mormont: The Doom took Valyria in minutes. But the rest of Essos wasn't so lucky. Out of the east swarmed the Dothraki. And there were no dragons to push them back. The Dothraki tide slammed first into the Sarnori, who called themselves the Tall Men, and whose ancient kingdom dominated the grasslands of Essos. The Tall Men at first scorned the Horselords as uncivilized barbarians. Which they were.

But Khal Mengo had united all of them into one khalasar with one aim. To trample the world beneath their hooves and take other peoples as their herd. One by one, the cities of the Tall Men were overwelmed. Still, they wouldn't unite against the Dothraki. Many didn't believe the tales of the rare survivors. No army could move so fast or strike so quickly. They didn't know that the Dothraki live in the saddle and have such command over their horses that they seem to have four legs, not two. Where most archers fire from foot, the Dothraki fire from horseback. Charging or retreating, it makes no matter, they are just as deadly. But the Dothraki prefer close combat, howling for blood as they ride down their enemies with their arakhs. And there were so many of them.

When Khal Mengo's son, Khal Moro, laid waste to the Waterfall City of Sathar, renaming it "The Place of Wailing Children", the Tall Men finally realized their peril. Led by a High King, they assembled a great army to break the khals once and for all, and met the Dothraki on what would ever after be known as the Field of Crows. The four khals commanded almost 80,000 horsemen between them. The Tall Men had 100,000 foot soldiers, 10,000 armored riders, 10,000 light horsemen and 6,000 scythed chariots. As battle was joined, the earth-shattering advance of the Tall Men's chariots smashed through the center of the Dothraki horde, the spinning blades on their wheels slicing through the legs of the Dothraki horses. When one khal went down before them, cut to pieces and trampled, his khalasar broke and fled. The chariots thundered after the fleeing horsemen, and the High King and his armored riders plunged in after them, followed by their foot soldiers, waving their spears and screaming in victory.

But it was a trap. The Dothraki were not fleeing, as the Tall Men realized when the Horselords suddenly turned their horses and unleashed a storm of arrows. Two more khalasars swept down on the Tall Men's flanks while another attacked them from the rear, cutting off their retreat. Completely encircled, the High King and his mighty host was destroyed. The Tall Men had stood for thousands of years. Now the crows feasted on their corpses, as the Dothraki squabbled over their valuables. The common wisdom is that the Dothraki tide finally broke upon the spears of the Unsullied at Qohor, saving Essos from the Horselords. In truth, the days when the Dothraki could threaten the entire world had already passed. The great khalasar forged by Khal Mengo had splintered into a dozen hordes after the death of the last great khal, and the riders had resumed their petty feuds. The grasslands of Essos are now called the Dothraki Sea, but no more nations drown in it.

Still, the Dothraki priestesses, the Dosh khaleen, prophesy that one day the Dothraki will gather at Vaes Dothrak, their holy capital, and unite once more under the greatest khal of them all, the Stallion Who Mounts the World. He will lead their people to the ends of the earth and grind all nations to dust beneath them. I... knew a khaleesi who the priestesses said would give birth to this Stallion. She didn't. No doubt the Dosh khaleen have made the same prophecy before and will again. World conquest is an alluring, but few who dream it ever awake to its reality. Yet could the Dothraki, united behind one great leader, conquer the world? When I first came to Essos, I laughed at the idea. But now... Most armies are either sellswords, paid to fight, who often refuse to die, or peasants called up from the fields and hovels. How long would those armies stand against the charge of 100,000 screamers howling for blood? How well would boiled-leather jerkins and mailed shirts protect them when the arrows fall like rain?

Notes

  • This is the first time that the Sarnori have been introduced into the TV continuity.
  • Jorah mentions that after the Dothraki left the Sarnori city Sathar in ruins, they renamed it "the Place of Wailing Children". In the Dothraki language, this new name is "Yalli Qamayi" - when new maps revealing the rest of Essos were being developed, linguist and inventor of the Dothraki language David J. Peterson was given literal place names then worked out accurate translations for each.

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