The Wall is a colossal fortification which stretches for 300 miles along the northern border of the Seven Kingdoms, defending the realm from the wildlings who live beyond. The Wall is reported to be over 700 feet tall and is made of solid ice. It was reportedly constructed using both magic and mundane means some eight millennia ago to defend the realm against the White Walkers who reportedly dwell in the uppermost north, although the White Walkers are now only considered to be mythical.
The Wall is defended and held by the Sworn Brothers of the Night's Watch. Once an honorable institution, the Watch is now grievously under-strength. The headquarters of the Watch is Castle Black, located in the shadow of the Wall at the northern end of the Kingsroad. Eastwatch, located at the eastern end of the Wall, serves as the main port and resupply post for the Night's Watch. The Shadow Tower at the western end of the Wall is the only other manned castle. Among the abandoned castles along the length of the Wall are the Nightfort and Deep Lake. The region south of the Wall is called the Gift and is also controlled by the Night's Watch.
In the books
In the Song of Ice and Fire novels the Wall is about 700 feet tall and is defended by three manned castles, the Shadow Tower at the far western end, Eastwatch-by-the-Sea in the far east and Castle Black in the middle, where the Kingsroad meets the Wall. Castle Black is the Watch's headquarters and primary redoubt. Sixteen additional castles stretch along the base of the Wall, but these are no longer permanently manned due to the Watch's lack of manpower. The Wall was allegedly built by Brandon the Builder after the War for the Dawn to defend against the return of the Others.
Numbered on the map above, these are names of the other castles. Of these, only the Shadow Tower is still garrisoned at the start of the books.
- The Shadow Tower.
- Sentinel Stand.
- Hoarfrost Hill.
- The Nightfort.
- Deep Lake.
- Sable Hall.
- The Long Barrow.
- The Torches.
Measurements in the Seven Kingdoms in both the books and TV series are given in imperial measurements. Converted to metric for the benefit of some viewers, the Wall is 482 kilometers (300 miles) long and between 213 and 244 meters (700-800 feet) tall.