Harys Swyft

Harys Swyft fought for the Lannisters in the Battle of the Green Fork and after Lord Roose Bolton got defeated, he traveled to Harrenhal with Lord Tywin.

The Definitive Glossary for Game of Thrones

Ser Harys Swyft is the head of House Swyft and one of the bannermen of the Lannisters. He is Ser Kevan Lannister’s good father and the Knight of Cornfield. Before Lord Tywin Lannister came into power at Casterly Rock, Harys borrowed large sums of money from his father Lord Tytos Lannister. However, when he learned he could not repay the debt, he sent one of his daughters, Dorna Swyft, as a hostage to the Lannisters. She later became Kevan’s wife.

Harys Swyft Personal Details

Appearance and Personality

Harys is bald and has a white beard over his chin. He is servile and wears a yellow doublet with the bantam rooster of House Swyft. The rooster encrusted on his cloth gets made from lapid beads. Harys also wears a yellow silk cloak.


Ser Harys Swyft borrowed some money from the Lannisters during Lord Tytos’s reign. Upon Ser Tywin Lannister’s return from the War of the Ninepenny Kings, he started demanding repayment of his father’s debts. Realizing the severity of the young heir of Casterly Rock’s demands, Harys gave his daughter Dorna as a hostage.

Relevance in A Song of Ice and Fire Novels

A Game of Thrones

After the Battle in the Green Fork, a courier brings news to Harys, Tywin, and Kevan about Jaime Lannister’s defeat at the hands of Robb Stark. Harys asks that the Lannisters lead a faction for peace, but Kevan and Tywin tell him that Lord Eddard Stark’s death already destroyed any efforts for peace. Harys later suggests the Lannisters write to the Iron Throne asking for new troops to send to the Westerlands.

A Clash of Kings

Harys follows Tywin to Harrenhal and gets a bad reputation among the cooks. His squire gets killed by one of the members of the Brave Companions during an argument over Lord Beric Dondarrion. Arya Stark watches Harys begrudgingly kiss Vargo on Tywin’s orders. Tywin sends his son Tyrion Lannister to King’s Landing as the acting Hand of the King. After removing Pycelle from the Small Council, Tyrion and his sister Cersei struggle for power. 

When Tyrion learns of Stannis Baratheon’s impending attack, he alerts his father and sends Petyr Baelish to make a deal with the Tyrells. Harys Swyft follows Tywin and fights at the Battle of the Blackwater. During the conflict, he gets stuck under his horse and Willit, one of his men-at-arms rescues and defends him against attackers.

A Feast for Crows

After Tywin’s death, Cersei burns down the Tower of the Hand and becomes Queen Regent she makes Harys Swyft the Hane of the King, believing he is a weak man who will bend to her will. Unfamiliar with politics, Harys gets confused at the small council meetings of King Tommen. 

When Lord Gyle Rosby dies, Harys becomes the new Lord Treasurer as he gets replaced by Lord Orton Merryweather. Cersei tries framing Margaery Tyrell for fornication but gets arrested after Lancel Lannister came forward, testifying against her. While imprisoned, Grand Maester Pycelle and Harys take over governance and ask Kevan Lannister to return to King’s Landing as Lord Regent.

A Dance with Dragons

Harys continues serving as Lord Treasure even though the Iron Throne has no money. To repay the debt owed to the Iron Bank of Braavos, he writes to the bankers of Myr in hopes of a loan. He also corresponds to the magisters of Pentos. When he suggests the Iron Throne raise taxation because of the rebellion and tyranny in the realm, Kevan says no.

Relevance in Adaptation

In HBO’s Game of Thrones, Ser Harys Swyft was a minor character. The actor that portrayed Harys never got mentioned and he only got featured in season 1.

Harys Swyft: The Soft Man Who Lived

Weak men got destroyed in George R. R. Martin’s A Song of Ice and Fire. Harys was a weak man who got played around like a pawn. However, though he was soft in an unforgiving world, he outlived some of the most brutal people. His softness gave him the advantage of having almost no deadly enemies.


Why did Cersei make Harys Swyft Lord Treasurer?

Cersei Lannister was an incredibly incompetent ruler, who made choices without thinking. She made Harys Swyft the Hand of the King because she felt he was a weak man who would succumb whenever he faced pressure.

What happened after Cersei got arrested?

When the Faith Militant arrests Cersei, Harys Swyft and Grandmaester Pycelle seize control of the Iron Throne. They then invite Ser Kevan Lannister to return to King’s Landing as Lord Regent.

Why did Harys send his daughter to the Lannisters?

During Lord Titos Lannister’s reign, Harys took large amounts of debt and could not repay it. When Tywin Lannister became the Lord of Casterly Rock, he demanded payment from every debtor. Harys convinced that Lannister was no koke like his father, sent his daughter as a hostage.

Does Harys get killed?

No, Harys is alive and well in A Song of Ice and Fire. The only people who got killed were Ser Kevan Lannister and Pycelle.

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