In Game of Thrones S08E02, Jaime Lannister said,

“You don’t need a king. Any knight can make another knight".

But is it right in the context of Game of Thrones? Is it legal to make anyone else knight by a knight himself? Is it analogous to the real world?


Yes. In the shows this is the first time we've known rules about a knighthood been stated, so there's no other claim to compare it to. But, lucky for us, GRRM has stated it's either a knight or a King, but not a lord unless he's a Knight himself:

To settle an old debate on EZBoard, any king can make a knight but any lord cannot. That lord must be a knight as well. So Baelor I could make knights but Eddard could not. George said the more important thing for kings is making lords. The problem is giving lands.

In the books there is one notable example (spoiler alert, as this does not happen in the show):

Berric Dondarion knights Gendry

For the final part of your question: in real life there have been many types of knighthoods, some military, some just a title, some hereditary, ... . So there is not a fixed ruleset on becoming a knight. I'm not sure if GRRM based his knights on some real order, but it seems more likely he invented his own order for Westerosi knights and his rules are all that matter.

  • If I remember correctly there was a law made relatively late in medieval times that prohibited knights from raising commoners to knighthood, but I can't think of the reference right now. – sgf Apr 22 '19 at 9:06
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    The quote you provided doesn't say "either a knight or a King"; it says nothing about knights who aren't lords. – NotThatGuy Apr 22 '19 at 16:22
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    It was funny how Coster-Waldau read that line, like it was some revelation. Every Southron in that room would have known that, including Brienne. Also, your link is broken. – Azor Ahai -him- Apr 22 '19 at 16:23
  • @AzorAhai - FWIW, the link works for me. – T.J. Crowder Apr 23 '19 at 8:39
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    @AzorAhai The line is prompted by Tormund's comment about how if he was King he'd Knight her ten times over. Jaimie then responds, as a point of clarification to Tormund, who really wouldn't know this, that a King isn't necessary. Everyone else is slightly astonished and eager to watch things unfold because, as Brienne says, knighting a woman is against tradition and this is, as such, essentially unheard of. It's a powerful display of Jaimie's respect that a tradition-bound knight follows Tormund's lead and says "fook tradition, you deserve to be a knight". – zibadawa timmy Apr 23 '19 at 19:15

I have an example from the books, it's from the Hedge Knight novel. EDIT: After seeing the episode, emphasis mine as direct quotes from the show.

“Hmpf.” The man Plummer rubbed his nose. “Any knight can make a knight, it is true, though it is more customary to stand a vigil and be anointed by a septon before taking your vows. Were there any witnesses to your dubbing?”

And later at the tournament

“Knight me.” Raymun put a hand on Dunk’s shoulder and turned him. “I will take my cousin’s place. Ser Duncan, knight me.” He went to one knee.

Frowning, Dunk moved a hand to the hilt of his longsword, then hesitated. “Raymun, I . . . I should not.”

“You must. Without me, you are only five.”

“The lad has the truth of it,” said Ser Lyonel Baratheon. “Do it, Ser Duncan. Any knight can make a knight.

“Do you doubt my courage?” Raymun asked.

“No,” said Dunk. “Not that, but . . .“ Still he hesitated.

A fanfare of trumpets cut the misty morning air. Egg came running up to them. “Ser, Lord Ashford summons you.

The Laughing Storm gave an impatient shake of the head. “Go to him, Ser Duncan. I’ll give squire Raymun his knighthood.” He slid his sword out of his sheath and shouldered Dunk aside. “Raymun of House Fossoway,” he began solemnly, touching the blade to the squire’s right shoulder, “in the name of the Warrior I charge you to be brave.” The sword moved from his right shoulder to his left. “In the name of the Father I charge you to be just.” Back to the right. “In the name of the Mother I charge you to defend the young and innocent.” The left. “In the name of the Maid I charge you to protect all women.”

Dunk left them there, feeling as relieved as he was guilty.

  • The point there being that Dunk is almost certainly not actually a knight. – curiousdannii Apr 22 '19 at 12:10
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    @curiousdannii Duncan is almost certainly not an actual knight, himself. But if he were, then he would have been able to knight Raymun Fossoway. – Raj Apr 22 '19 at 12:45
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    @Raj More precisely, he would have known how to in this scene. – Azor Ahai -him- Apr 22 '19 at 16:20

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