Fosa Cailin

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Moat Cailin
Ancient fortress ruins
Moat cailin by reneaigner.jpg
Art work by Reneaigner ©
Lokalizacja Westeros, Północ, Przesmyk
Założony Dawn Age
Moat Cailin is located in The North
Moat Cailin
Północ and the location of Winterfell
Moat Cailin by Cris Urdiales ©

Moat Cailin is ancient fortress on the northern edge of the great swamp known as Przesmyk, in the Północ. It is one of Północ's most important strongholds, even though much of it now stands in ruins. Its importance stems from the fact that it commands the causeway, which is the safe route for armies to travel through the swamps of the Przesmyk. It is a very effective natural choke point which has protected Północ from southern invasion for thousands of years. The only way for an invader to effective bypass Moat Cailin is to win the allegiance of the Reeds who know of other routes through the swamps. Those are not on any map, known only to the Błotniacy, such as narrow trails between the bogs and wet roads through the reeds that only boats can follow and given the Reeds' strong ancestral ties to the Starks, this is unlikely to happen.


It's claimed that Moat Cailin was raised roughly 10,000 years ago, by the the Pierwsi Ludzie. A great stronghold, with twenty towers and great basalt curtain wall as high as that of Winterfell's. It used to be a key defense of the north, against which the Andalowie armies threw themselves time after time with no success. Today only great blocks of black basalt lay scattered about, half sunk in the ground, where the wall once stood. The wooden keep rotted away a thousand years past and three remaining towers out of a fabled twenty are green with moss.[1]

According to myth, the Children attempted to use Moat Cailin to hold back the flood of invading Pierwsi Ludzie and, by working powerful magics from the 'Children's Tower', when that failed due to the humans' superior numbers, attempted to shatter the Przesmyk and completely separate Północ from the South in the same manner they shattered the Arm of Dorne centuries earlier. However, the Children failed and only succeeded in flooding it, creating bogs and swamps. However, the cataclysm proved the strength of their power and may have proved instrumental in bringing the Pierwsi Ludzie to agree to the terms of the Pact that ended hostilities between the two races.

While in the present era most of Moat Cailin's former towers have fallen into ruin and have not been permanently manned for centuries. However, even the three remaining towers are more than capable of defending the passage to the South, provided that they are fully manned. A key point is that Moat Cailin was only designed to resist attack from the south, and thus its northern flank is relatively exposed to attack by even a small force. This weakness was exploited by the Żelaźni Ludzie in the Battle of Moat Cailin during the Wojna Pięciu Królów.


The remaining three towers command the causeway from all sides and enemies must pass between them. Attackers would have to face constant fire from the other towers should they attempt to attack any one tower, wading through chest deep water and crossing a moat.[2]

The three remaining towers of Moat Cailin are as follows:

  • Children's Tower is tall and slender. It has only half of the crenelations of its crown. Legend has it that the Dzieci Lasu called upon their gods here to send the hammer of the waters to smash the Przesmyk.[2]
  • Gatehouse Tower is the only tower which still stands straight, even retaining some of the walls around it.[2]
  • Drunkard's Tower is so named due to its great lean. It stands where the south and west walls once met.[2]

Recent Events

Gra o Tron
On the march south, Robb Stark took the Gatehouse Tower as his seat, Greatjon Umber took the Children's Tower for his and Rickard Karstark, the Drunkard's Tower.[2]
Starcie Królów
Victarion Greyjoy was sent to take Moat Cailin.[3]
Nawałnica Mieczy
Upon hearing of his brother Balons death, Victaron leaves a token force under the command of Ralf Kenning behind to hold the Moat, while he sails to decide the issue of the new Iron King.
Uczta dla Wron
The sixty-three-man Żelaźni Ludzie garrison begins to run low on food and supplies.
Taniec ze Smokami
Ramsay Bolton sends Theon Greyjoy to offer the Żelaźni Ludzie food and safe passage in return if they surrender unarmed. When they do surrender Ramsay has all sixty three of them flayed alive. The next day their skinless bodies, still dripping fresh blood, are put on pikes and displayed along the road.[4]

References and Notes

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