Game of Thrones Why House Stark Wont Go Extinct (Despite No Male Heir)

Game of Thrones: Why House Stark Won’t Go Extinct (Despite No Male Heir)

Game of Thrones’ House Stark is on the verge of extinction, but they’re not already there. Through Sansa, the Stark name can still be carried on.

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Game of Thrones Why House Stark Wont Go Extinct (Despite No Male Heir)

Although the series finale of Game of Thrones signaled the end of many houses’ dynasties, House Stark won’t yet go extinct quite yet, even though they were left without a proper male heir. Houses Tyrell, Mormont, and Bolton all went extinct in the last few seasons of the show, while certain families like the Freys and Martells were left with an uncertain status. Additionally, House Baratheon had gone extinct with the deaths of Robert, Renly, Stannis, and Shireen, only for Daenerys to legitimize Robert’s bastard son Gendry, naming him Gendry Baratheon, thus keeping the house alive.

After serving as the primary family in the series, Game of Thrones’ series finale rounded out the lives of the remaining Stark children, who were numbered down from 6 to 4 by the end. Although technically more of a Targaryen than Stark, Jon Snow relinquished his titles and claim to the throne after killing Daenerys in the finale, meaning, either way, he wouldn’t be able to carry on the Stark legacy. When deciding who would be King of Westeros, the council surprisingly nominated Bran Stark, who seemingly had no interest in power or family as the Three-Eyed Raven. Arya was asked to marry Gendry, which would mean losing the Stark name, though she declined, deciding to adventure instead of becoming a lady and wife. This leaves Sansa, the Queen in the North and Lady of Winterfell, who is extremely dedicated to preserving her family’s legacy and carrying on the Stark rule.

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As Sansa points out during Bran’s election as king, he isn’t able to have children due to being paralyzed below the waist. Additionally, Jon’s children would have taken on a Targaryen surname as he was the legitimate son of Rhaegar and Lyanna. With Game of Thrones not necessarily leaving House Stark a male heir, it appeared that the family name would die out after the fates of the Stark children. In reality, Sansa can still carry out the Stark name. There have been real-life and in-universe Game of Thrones precedents set for Sansa to give her heirs the Stark name instead of that of who she marries. Her husband would have to set aside his pride of passing on his name to his children, but House Stark is a historic, noble, and powerful house that would take precedence in having the name passed down, especially since Sansa is the only living Stark who will likely produce heirs.

The Game of Thrones world has already featured a well-known example of the Starks carrying on their name through the female line, meaning Sansa passing on her name to legitimate or out-of-wedlock children wouldn’t be a new, outrageous concept. One of Game of Thrones’ most notable Stark legends is that of Bael the Bard, a free folk raider who, in revenge, had taken Lord Brandon Stark’s daughter, who was his only child at a time when House Stark was on the verge of extinction. When his daughter suddenly returned to her room with a baby in her arms (after having been in Winterfell’s crypts the entire time), the child was legitimized with the Stark name in order to carry on the house’s lineage, becoming the next Lord Stark of Winterfell.

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Even in real life, Queen Elizabeth II passed on the historic Windsor name to her children, though having to compromise with Philip and hyphenate their surname. With Game of Thrones’ Sansa Stark now also being the Queen in the North, it’s highly unlikely that any Northern houses would object to carrying on her name through the female line. Sansa is highly dedicated to protecting the North and preserving her family’s legacy, so she’ll likely have children in the hopes of continuing the Stark line. If Game of Thrones ever gets a sequel series, one of Sansa’s heirs will likely be serving as the Stark King or Queen in the North.

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