Theon Greyjoy

Theon Greyjoy is the son of Balon Greyjoy and heir apparent to the Iron Islands. He lands in trouble with Ramsay when he betrays the Starks.

The Definitive Glossary for Game of Thrones

Upon defeating Balon Grejoy and killing his oldest sons, Lord Eddard Stark took in Theon Greyjoy as a hostage and raised him as one of his children. Theon grew up with the Stark children and became fond of everyone, especially Robb Stark. Theon became a member of the Stark family and became fond of the customs of the North. When he gets sent to ally with his father, he turns cloak and sides with the ironborn; this leads to Moat Cailin falling to the Iron Islands.

Theon Greyjoy Personal Details

  • Name: Theon Greyjoy. 
  • Year of Birth: 278 or 279 AC in Pyke.
  • Parents: Lord Balon Greyjoy and Lady Alannys Harlaw.
  • Titles Held: Captain of the Sea Bitch, Lord of Winterfell, Prince of Winterfell.
  • Allegiances: House Stark, House Greyjoy.
  • Aliases: Prince of Fools, Theon Turnclaok, Theon Kinslayer, Reek, The Squid Prince.
  • Siblings: Rodrik Greyjoy, Maron Greyjoy, Asha Greyjoy.
  • Lovers: Kyra, Bessa, The Miller’s Wife, The Myraham’s Captain Daughter.
  • Hair Color: Black.
  • Culture: Ironborn.

Appearance and Personality

Theon is a handsome man with a slim face and black hair. He is callous, has an arrogant smile, and is promiscuous with many lovers, from the miller’s wife to the Captain’s daughter. However, behind his arrogance is an identity crisis and a never-ending desire to be glorious; this makes him abandon the Starks for his father.

Theon wears a cloak made from fur with black silk gloves and black leather boots. He wears a white leather belt and a black velvet doublet engraved with House Greyjoy’s signature Kraken to match his attire. To make himself appear more exotic, he wears a gold chain and a greyish lambswool breech. Apart from his usual attire, Theon wears other clothes, including a black surcoat over a shirt made of chain mail for combat and a black and gold striped satin tunic with silver studs.

After years of training in Winterfell, Theon became an expert bowsman. He uses a longbow and a dirk. Though archery is his most refined skill, Theon wields a longsword and is a great horse rider.


Early Life

Theon was born in Pyke as the last son of Lord Balon Greyjoy. He played with his older brothers, Maron and Rodrik, who always beat him. When he came of age, Dagmer Cleftjaw gave him a sword. After Robert Baratheon led a rebellion against Aerys II Targaryen, he succeeded and became King of the Andals, the Rhoynar, and the First Men.

Thinking that the new King had few supporters, Balon Greyjoy, Lord of the Iron Islands, declared the Iron Islands an independent state; this sparked a rebellion. During Greyjoy’s Rebellion, Balon lost his sons, Maron and Rodrik, and with only Theon and his sister, Asha, left, Theon became the heir apparent to the throne.

After the siege of Pyke, the Iron Islands fell to Robert Baratheon and Balon surrendered. To prevent further rebellion, Theon got taken in as a ward and hostage of Lord Eddard Stark of Winterfell. 

Arrival in Winterfell

After becoming the ward of Eddard Stark, Theon arrived in Winterfell and became the foster son of Ned Stark. He grew up in the same manner as the Stark children and learned the histories of the Northern houses from Maester Luwin. Besides learning history, Theon got trained in combat by Ser Rodrik Cassel. As time passed, he grew into an exceptional fighter with exceptional horse-riding skills.

As Theon got closer to the Starks, he got close to Arya Stark, Bran, Rickon, Sansa Stark, and Robb. However, he distanced himself from Jon Snow, the bastard son of Eddard. As he grew, Jon became a promiscuous man and entered many flings with different women. He also participated in melees of tourneys and once traveled with Ned to Tohhren’s Square.

Relevance in A Song of Ice and Fire

A Game of Thrones

During the execution of a Night’s Watch deserter, Gared, the Stark boys, and Theon watch as Lord Eddard Stark uses the Valyrian Steel sword, Ice, to behead the deserter. After the execution, Bran and his brothers find six direwolf pups and plead for their father to spare them.

King Robert I Baratheon arrives in Winterfell and asks Eddard to become the new Hand of the King. After Eddard agrees, Robert makes a pact to wed Sansa to Joffrey Baratheon. After Bran’s fall, Eddard leaves with his daughters, leaving behind his sons and Theon. 

When Bran almost gets assassinated, Catelyn Stark travels to King’s Landing to inquire about the dagger used. On her way back, she meets Tyrion Lannister and arrests him; this causes Tywin Lannister to raise his banners and begin raiding the Riverlands.

Meanwhile, Bran wakes up and later gets a specialized horse to enable him to ride. However, while in the woods, he gets attacked by a group of Wildlings. When Robb comes to his rescue, he gets held at knifepoint, but Theon kills the man trying to kill Bran, and the wildling party gets killed except Osha, a spearwife of Mance Rayder.

When Eddard speaks about assassinating Daenerys Targaryen, he decides to quit and later meets Ser Jaime Lannister, Tyrion’s brother. A fight breaks out, and he gets injured. Upon getting news of Eddard’s injury, Theon and Hallis Mollen advise Robb to call his banners.

When Eddard learns about Cersei Lannister’s secret, she plots her husband’s death, and before Ned can seize the Iron Throne, she makes her son King and arrests him. Upon learning of his father’s arrest, Robb calls his banners, and Theon swears loyalty to him, becoming his trusted adviser and personal guard. After Eddard’s death, Robb gets declared King in the North.

A Clash of Kings

With Robb Stark as the King in the North, the civil war between House Lannister and Stark intensifies. Robb sends Theon to the Iron Islands to meet his father for an alliance between the Iron Islands and Starks.

Upon reaching Pyke, Theon tries to make his father ally with Robb, but Balon realizes his son Theon is a northern man by character and rejects Robb’s offer. Balon instead decides to make the Iron Islands an independent state. Theon meets his sister, who disguises herself as Esgred, and learns of his father’s plans. He joins his father’s cause and gets a squire, Wex Pyke, and a horse called Smiler.

Theon gets sent to harry the Stony Shore by his father. He gets accompanied by Aeron Greyjoy and Dagmer Cleftjaw. He receives his ship, the Sea Bitch, and defeats Benfred Tallhart. Dissatisfied with his task, Theon tells Dagmer of his plan to take over Winterfell and sends him to attack Torhhen’s Square.

When Rodrik Cassel leaves Winterfell to defend the square, Theon infiltrates and takes over the castle with a handful of men. He becomes Prince Theon Greyjoy, declaring himself Prince of the Castle. He captures Bran and Rickon, but they escape with Osha’s help. 

After searching for them without success, Theon takes advice from Reek and kills two boys. He burns their corpses and hangs their heads on the castle walls. Later, Rodrik returns after defeating Dagmer and requests that Theon open Winterfell’s gates. However, Theon refuses, and an army from House Bolton arrives. Thinking the Boltons are on his side, Rodrik tries to combine forces with them but gets killed. Reek then reveals he is Ramsay Snow and orders Winterfell to get burnt.

A Storm of Swords

After arriving in King’s Landing, Tywin Lannister takes his position as Hand of the King. He states that his daughter, Queen Cersei Lannister, should marry Theon. However, a message arrives saying Theon burned Winterfell when the northern forces tried to reclaim it.

Ramsay Snow, who becomes Ramsay Bolton, sends a piece of Theon’s skin to his father, Roose Bolton, who sends it to Robb Stark. As the War of the Five Kings intensifies, Stannis Baratheon employs the help of Melisandre, and she kills his brother, Renly Baratheon. Later, Robb gets betrayed by Roose at the Red Wedding.

A Feast for Crows

When Balon Greyjoy falls to his death while crossing a bridge at Pyke, his brother, Aeron, tries to make Victarion Greyjoy the next King. However, Euron Greyjoy arrives and convinces everyone he is worthy of becoming King. Though Theon gets suggested as a potential candidate, he is presumed dead as his sister, Asha, could not identify his body.

A Dance with Dragons

Believed to be dead, Theon faces extensive torture at the hands of Ramsay Bolton. The skin on his fingers gets peeled off, and his joints get cut off. After the extreme brutality, Theon takes on an alias, Reek. His appearance changes, and he becomes haggard looking. His hair becomes white, and he faces mental torture from Ramsay, who makes him escape with Kyra, his lover, and catches them. Ramsay kills Kyra and breaks Theon. He gets sent to the ironborn-occupied Moat Cailin to negotiate their surrender. After succeeding, Ramsay makes him one of his hounds.

Later, Theon learns of Arya Stark’s marriage to Ramsay, but when she arrives, he realizes it is Jeyne Poole. He gives the new bride to her husband, Ramsay, and on the wedding night, Ramsay orders Theon to use his tongue on Jeyne.

Later, Mance Rayder, under an alias, Abel, infiltrates and tells Theon of his plans to escape. Theon then takes Jeyne with him. However, before leaving, they get discovered. To evade capture, Theon and Jeyne jump from Winterfell’s walls and travel till they reach Stannis’s camp. There, Theon meets his sister, Asha.

Appearance in Adaptations

In HBO’s Game of Thrones, Theon’s character got portrayed by Alfie Allen. He appeared in all seasons of the tv series and starred in 47 episodes. He died in season 8, episode 3, defending Bran from the Night King during the Battle of Winterfell.

After getting captured by Ramsay Bolton, Theon gets tortured into becoming Reek. When Sansa arrives and becomes Ramsay’s wife, she sees Theon and confronts him, but he lies. Later, he agrees to help her escape by lighting a candle in the Broken Tower to signal Brienne of Tarth to come to rescue Sansa. However, Theon tells Ramsay of the plan, foiling everything.

Theon: The Proud Fool

Theon is one of the biggest fools in A Song of Ice and Fire. He throws himself into peril by making a crazy gamble based on emotions. Because he tried to gain glory and admiration from his father, he decided to invade Winterfell even though he knew Rodrik Cassel and the North would never allow him to hold Winterfell. His folly led to brutal torture that shattered his mind into irreparable pieces.


How did Theon betray the Starks?

First, Theon left Robb and headed to Pyke to negotiate an alliance with his father. However, when Balon declared himself King, Theon joined his cause. Later, Theon snuck into Winterfell and took over the castle. Then he framed Rickon and Bran Stark’s death.

Can Theon Greyjoy pee?

In A Song of Ice and Fire, Theon can pee. However, in HBO’s Game of Thrones, peeing may be difficult for him. Nonetheless, he would still be able to urinate one way or the other. 

Why did Theon Greyjoy betray Robb Stark?

Theon betrayed Robb because he felt that betraying Robb would make his father notice him. When Balon lost the Greyjoy’s Rebellion, Theon got taken from him, and over time, he forgot him. When Theon reached Pyke, he wanted his father to notice him so much that he sided with him.

What was Theon’s relationship with Jon Snow?

Theon and Jon were not close. As Jon was sullen and reserved, Theon avoided him most of the time and got closer to Robb instead.

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