House Nymeros Martell of Sunspear is one of the Great Houses of Westeros and is the ruling house of Dorne. 'Nymeros' indicates "of the line of Nymeria," but generally it is simply called House Martell. The seat of the Prince of Dorne is Sunspear in southeastern Dorne.
The Martells of old used a spear as their emblem, while Nymeria and her Rhoynar used the sun as theirs. When Nymeria wed Lord Mors Martell, the symbols were combined into a gold spear piercing a red sun on an orange field. Their words are Unbowed, Unbent, Unbroken. In appearance they are what Daeron I Targaryen considered salty Dornishmen, with dark eyes, dark hair in ringlets, and olive skin.
Seat: Sunspear Edit
Sunspear is a walled settlement, protected by three massive Winding Walls, encircling one another and containing miles of narrow alleys, hidden courts, and noisy bazaars. The Threefold Gate, where the gates are lined up one behind the other, avoids the labyrinth, instead allowing straight passage on a brick path to the Old Palace.
One of Sunspear's chief structures is the original stronghold of House Martell, the Sandship, which is a large, ugly, dun-colored building that looks like a dromond. Over time, towers in Rhoynish fashion sprung up around the keep. Two other chief structures are the tall and slender Spear Tower and the great, domed Tower of the Sun. The Spear Tower is a hundred and a half feet high, and can house noble prisoners; In the Tower of the Sun, the high seats of the Prince of Dorne can be found: two twin seats, one with the Martell spear inlaid in gold upon its back, the other bearing the blazing Rhoynish sun. These two towers are the first things visitors see when they arrive at Sunspear, whether by land or by sea.
Old Palace Edita palace in Sunspear, the seat of House Martell in Dorne. It includes the Sandship, Tower of the Sun, and the Spear Tower, as well as a feast hall and a solar for the Prince of Dorne.
Rising from the Old Palace is the slender Spear Tower, a massive tower of stone. It thrusts up from the surrounding community, stretching one hundred and fifty feet tall, with a spear of gilded steel atop that adds a further thirty feet. Highborn prisoners can be confined in cells at the top of the Spear Tower.
The Tower of the Sun has a dome of gold and leaded glass. Beneath the dome sits the throne room, a large round room with thick windows and many colored glass. The floors are made of pale marble. Within the throne room there are two seats on a dais, near twins to one another, the only difference being that one is inlaid with the Martell spear on its back and the other features the blazing Rhoynish sun that flew from the masts of Nymeria's ships. The spear seat is used by the ruling Prince of Dorne.
The Sandship is a squat, ugly, ancient keep of House Martell. It looks like a dun-colored dromond that has washed ashore and turned to stone.
Shadow City Edit
The closest thing to a true city that the Dornishmen have, the shadow city is no more than a queer, dusty town. Built against a wall of Sunspear, the shadow city spreads westwards. Closest to Sunspear's walls, mud-brick shops and windowless hovels can be found. Stables, inns, winesinks and pillow houses are found west of those, with walls of their own. More hovels have been build against those walls, which in has led to the city becoming a labyrinth of narrow alleys, homes, and bazaars.
Water Gardens Edit
A palace with gardens and waterworks that serves as a private retreat to House Martell, the rulers of Dorne. The Gardens are located on a beach next to the Summer Sea, three leagues to the west of Sunspear on a coastal road. Pale pink marble paves the gardens and courtyard. Terraces overlooking the numerous pools and fountains of the Water Gardens, shaded by blood orange trees, can be reached via a fluted pillar gallery leading to a triple archway. The Water Gardens are pleasant in autumn: hot days, cool nights, the salt breeze blowing in from the sea, and fountains and pools to admire and play in. Children from all stations and areas of Dorne are sent to the Water Gardens to foster, where they play together at the beach, pools and fountains, and in the water.
During the War for the Five Kings in 300 AC., Prince Doran of House Martell stayed neutral until Aegon 'Targaryen' landed in the Stormlands. Being his alleged nephew, Prince Doran declared for Aegon to be king and joined their forces together. Following Doran's death from his gout, his daughter Arianne became the Princess of Dorne.
In 304 AC. Aegon defeated Cersei Lannister and was crowned king by the Master of Whisperers, Varys. Upon being crowned, Aegon was revealed to not be the cousin of House Martell, Aegon Targaryen, but actually Aegon Blackfyre. Enraged by the deceit, Princess Arianne pulled her support for Aegon and returned to Sunspear, just as winter was becoming more prevalent and despite her people's favoring opinion of the new king.
Over the next few years, Arianne ruled a suffering Dorne- unequipt for the harsh, cold weather of the winter and an unsettled populace who still supports King Aegon.
In 306 AC. Princess Arianne was murdered by a mob of smallfolk led by her cousins, the Sand Snakes. Her younger brother, Trystane, became Prince of Dorne and once again gave King Aegon Dorne's support. However, whether he did this because he truly supported the Blackfyres or just wanted to avoid his sister's fate is unknown.
During the Long Night, Trystane and his descendants were able to avoid most wight activity, thanks to the Red Mountains and constant fighting north of Dorne. When King Aegon called the armies of the living to arms in the War for the Dawn, a small forces of dornish answered- the Martell troops being vastly outnumbered by stone dornish houses like Yronwood.
In 390 AC. Prince Aeron gave Dorne's support to the Targaryen claimant, Matarys, in the Targaryen Rebellion.
393 AC. Prince Aeron dies and his heir, Calon Martell, becomes Prince of Dorne. Calon is a Targaryen supporter like his father and the current ruler of Dorne.
Notable House Members Edit
Princess Arianne Martell (deceased, 306 AC.)
Prince Trystane Martell (deceased, 338 AC.)
Prince Aeron Martell (deceased, 393 AC.)
Prince Calon Martell, current Prince of Dorne
Tyene Martell, political hostage in King's Landing