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When we first meet Brienne of Tarth in Game of Thrones S02E03, she's fighting in a tournament to impress Renly Baratheon, when she wins she requests the honour to serve him. There are several points where Brienne clearly shows she's devoted to him.

Why? From the viewer's perspective there are four kings at this point, why does she support Renly's claim and why does she show such devotion?

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up vote 11 down vote accepted

Simply because Brienne of Tarth is in love with Renly Baratheon. She is fully aware that she can never be with him as a wife so she contents herself with being close to him as his body guard. She confesses as much to Catelyn Stark, even though Cat had already deduced that.

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Do you have any sources? From the viewers perspective she'd just met him at the tournament? – Liath Aug 7 '13 at 11:45
@Liath - I'm not aware of any quotes or such from the TV series (I don't have season 2 handy ATM), but it's quite obvious in the books. – System Down Aug 7 '13 at 13:07

from a wiki of ice and fire Brienne of Tarth:

She yearns for respect and acceptance from others, and easily gives her love and loyalty to the few people who treat her with any degree of genuine courtesy.

Brienne's only positive encounter with a man occurred when the Tarths' liege lord, Renly Baratheon, visited their island during his coming of age tour. He crossed paths with Brienne and treated her courteously, so she fell in love with him.

Therefore the obsession with Renly. Further, in spite of being the daughter of a lord, Brienne knew she could never get together with Renly, hence she chose to fight in the tournament and be near her king Renly by being his Kingsguard.

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+1 This is the main reason she "loves" Renly. For the record; there are also more instances of how Renly was respectful towards her and protected her. She also has a penchant for honour and duty to her Lord(s) and takes particular pride in her vows; the "Rainbow Guard" was the highest honour and vow she could have taken at the time. Afterwards, her loyalty easily slipped onto Lady Stark or the same reasons. – Mooz Mar 15 '15 at 21:49

In S05E03 she talks to her squire, Podrick Payne about Renly Baratheon. I don't remember the exact dialogues but she says something like this,

Brienne's father had thrown a ball in order to find a suitable match for young Brienne. He invited a dozen or so young lords to the event. The young lords behaved as if they were ready to combat each other to marry Brienne which made her very happy. However, she observed some of the lords smirking. Until now Brienne thought they didn't observe that she was unusually tall and mulish. The lords made fun of her. They said that "Brienne the Beauty" - What a Joke!. Then Renly comes forward, takes Brienne in his arms and dances with her. He saved her from becoming a joke. And since then she was faithful to him.

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I don't remember this scene. When did it happen? – System Down Apr 20 '15 at 19:32
@SystemDown I've updated it with the relevant episode. It's exactly like the answer says and seems pretty much the most accurate answer one can get for the TV-show alone. – Napoleon Wilson Apr 25 '15 at 23:56
@NapoleonWilson Thanks. I have updated my answer too. – SuvP Apr 26 '15 at 13:55

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