The Kingsguard, also known poetically as the White Swords or white cloaks, are the royal bodyguards of the Iron Throne. Regarded as the finest knights in the Seven Kingdoms, they are sworn to protect their king and the royal family with their own lives, to obey his commands, and to keep his secrets. The Kingsugard are sworn for life and are forbidden from owning land, taking a wife, or fathering children, although they can have non-hereditary commands, such as being warden or Hand of the King.
|Knights of the Kingsguard|
|Lord Commander||Ser Gavin Yronwood|
|Kinghts||Ser Eyron Whitehill
Ser Laenor Celtigar
Ser Daven Storm
Ser Willas Tyrell
Ser Donnel Clegane
|Former||Ser Aemon Snow|
Historically composed of seven knights sworn to a lifetime of service, the Kingsguard serve unto death despite age or any physical or mental ailments, with an invalid member's duties being taken up by his sworn brothers. During his time in the Kingsguard, a member is not allowed to hold lands, sire children, marry, or have any worldly allegiance except to his monarch. Some of the greatest warriors, battle commanders, swordsmen, and famous historical figures in the history of Westeros have served in the Kingsguard, including members of House Targaryen. All members of the Kingsguard must be sworn knights.
One of the Kingsguard always stands guard outside the council chambers when the small council is in session, and one is usually posted at the end of the bridge into Maegor's Holdfast.
The Kingsguard wear all white cloaks and intricate suits of white enameled scales, their fastenings for breastplate and other pieces made of silver. They alone bear the right to carry a pure white unemblazoned shield. Their white armor has little decoration, although some members wear decorative brooches or gaudy helms. According to a semi-canon source, the Kingsguard's standard depicts seven silver swords encircling a golden crown.
The rite for making a new member of the White Swords can vary. In common there seems to be the fact that it is a solemn and formal event, in which the knight kneels as he makes his vows before the king, and he receives the white cloak of the Kingsguard from the Hand of the King or the Lord Commander himself. The Lord Commander is always chosen by the king, with seniority and ability only playing parts in the decision. Also the Lord Commander is generally chosen from the existing pool of the Kingsguard.
The white cloaks' uninterrupted history since King Aegon I Targaryen is recorded in the White Book, a volume maintained by the Lord Commander of the Kingsguard. It is stored in the Round Room of the White Sword Tower, a four-story tower built into one of the seaward walls of the Red Keep of King's Landing. In the White Book, officially known as The Book of Brothers, each member of the Kingsguard is given one page on which his personal history and a record of his deeds are written. Because of its status as the royal bodyguard and the many remarkable figures who have been members, the Kingsguard has been involved in many major historical events in Westeros.