19 challenging 'Game of Thrones' trivia questions that even die-hard fans might have trouble with

·7 min read
daenerys dragon Game of Thrones
Daenerys Targaryen in the season one finale of "Game of Thrones."

HBO/"Game of Thrones"

  • Test your knowledge of HBO's fantasy series with our set of challenging questions about "Game of Thrones." 

  • Below you'll find a question above each image, with its answer revealed as you scroll down. 

  • Visit Insider's homepage for more stories.

HBO's "Game of Thrones" was the most popular TV show of the 2000s, garnering millions of fans worldwide. We've gathered some trivia questions that could stump the biggest fans, depending on how closely you followed news coverage of the series from the very beginning and what you remember about all the characters and storylines.

Keep reading to test your "Game of Thrones" knowledge. The questions are above the photos, with each answer revealed below.

What year was George R.R. Martin's book "A Game of Thrones" published?

george rr martin
Author George R.R. Martin.

Rich Polk/Getty Images

The first book in Martin's "A Song of Ice and Fire" series, "A Game of Thrones," was published in 1996.

What day did "Game of Thrones" premiere?

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Sean Bean as Ned Stark in "Game of Thrones."


The first-ever episode of "Game of Thrones" aired April 17, 2011. 

(Bonus fact: April 17 just happens to be actor Sean Bean's birthday.)

R + L = J was the most famous (and correct) "Game of Thrones" fan theory. What do those initials stand for?

Getty Images David Benioff and D.B. Weiss
"Game of Thrones" showrunners D.B. Weiss and David Benioff.

Getty Images

R + L = J stands for Rhaegar Targaryen + Lyanna Stark = Jon Snow.

The theory, which correctly guessed Jon Snow's real parentage, is one of the oldest fan predictions.

Name all six of the Stark direwolves.

game of thrones dead direwolf tollymore
The direwolf puppies were found in the pilot episode.


Each of the five Stark children, plus Jon Snow, adopted a direwolf pup in the very first episode of "Game of Thrones." The wolves were named Ghost, Grey Wind, Lady, Summer, Nymeria, and Shaggy Dog.

Which former US president's profile accidentally appeared in the season one finale?

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Joffrey and Sansa on the Red Keep's ramparts in season one.


In the original cut of the episode, a prosthetic mold of President George W. Bush could be seen in the background when Joffrey forced Sansa to look at Ned Stark's head among the spiked traitors. 

HBO and the series' showrunners issued statements of apology after this detail was picked up online. They explained that the Bush lookalike had been part of a bulk rented set of prosthetic body parts, and HBO called it an "inadvertent, careless mistake."

"We are sorry this happened and will have it removed from any future DVD production," HBO's statement read. Now Bush's likeness cannot be seen in streaming versions of the episode, nor on any hard-copy releases.

What is Catelyn Stark's maiden name?

catelyn stark game of thrones theories
Michelle Fairley as Catelyn Stark.


Catelyn Stark was born to House Tully in the Riverlands. 

What is Yara Greyjoy's name in the books?

Yara Greyjoy game of thrones
Gemma Whelan as Yara Greyjoy in "Game of Thrones."


In Martin's novels, Theon Greyjoy's sister is named Asha.

Her name was changed for the show due to concerns that audiences would confuse Asha with Osha — the name of the wildling woman who helps Bran Stark escape from Winterfell.

What is the title of the episode in which the Red Wedding happens?

The Red Wedding
The Red Wedding was the massacre in which Robb and Catelyn Stark were murdered.


Season three, episode nine was titled "The Rains of Castamere" (the name of the House Lannister-associated song that plays ominously before the massacre starts).

Which classic comedy film was referenced during the season four scene when Daenerys is taunted by a Meereenese champion?

Daenerys outside Meereen Game of Thrones season four
Emilia Clark as Daenerys Targaryen in season four, episode three: "Breaker of Chains."


The Meereenese man quoted lines from "Monty Python and the Holy Grail" (translated into Low Valyrian) when he was mocking Daenerys.

David Peterson, the linguist who created the Valyrian languages for "Game of Thrones," said in an HBO interview that the "Monty Python" reference was showrunner D.B. Weiss' idea.

Name at least three of the singers or musical bands who had cameo appearances in "Game of Thrones."

Jaime Lannister Bronn Game of Thrones season seven Macall B. Polay
Jaime Lannister and Ser Bronn of the Blackwater (who has a good singing voice himself).

Macall B. Polay/HBO

There were seven total musical-related cameos in all eight seasons of "Game of Thrones." You can read more about each appearance here, but every singer and band possible for the answer is listed below:

  • Ed Sheeran

  • Chris Stapleton

  • Mastodon (Brann Dailor, Bill Kelliher, and Brent Hinds)

  • Coldplay (drummer Will Champion)

  • Snow Patrol (singer Gary Lightbody)

  • Sigur Ros (Jónsi, Georg Hólm, and Ágúst Ævar Gunnarsson)

  • Of Monsters and Men (Nanna Bryndís Hilmarsdóttir, Ragnar Þórhallsson, Brynjar Leifsson, Kristján Páll Kristjánsson, and Arnar Rósenkranz Hilmarsson)

Name all three of Daenerys' dragons, and the three people she named them after.

Daenerys Targaryen with dragon egg Game of Thrones
Daenerys with her dragon eggs in season one.


  1. Drogon (named for Khal Drogo)

  2. Rhaegal (named for Rhaegar Targaryen)

  3. Viserion (named for Viserys Targaryen)

Who were the five leaders battling in the War of the Five Kings? (Hint: They were all shown during a wedding feast in season four.)

iron throne game of thrones hbo
The Iron Throne.


The five kings referenced in the War of the Five Kings were Joffrey Baratheon (aka really Lannister), Renly Baratheon, Stannis Baratheon, Robb Stark, and Balon Greyjoy.

Which "Game of Thrones" fan theory was given its nickname based on the 2013 Super Bowl?

This was a rare sports-"Game of Thrones" crossover.

Jonathan Ferrey / Stringer / Getty Images

The "Cleganebowl" fan theory predicted that brothers Ser Gregor and Sandor Clegane would fight to the death.

The term first appeared in 2013 and was inspired by the 2013 Super Bowl, in which the coaches of the opposing teams also happened to be brothers Jim and John Harbaugh. Football fans and sports announcers nicknamed the game "The Harbowl."

What is the customary response to Valar Morghulis?

jaqen h'ghar game of thrones
Jaqen H'ghar is one of many characters who spoke this phrase.


Valar morghulis (which translates to "all men must die") is traditionally met with the phrase valar dohaeris ("all men must serve"). 

Name the episode where the piano was used in the "Game of Thrones" score for the first time.

Game of Thrones Concert Barry Brecheisen Ramin in iron throne
Ramin Djawadi is the composer behind every note of music heard in "Game of Thrones."

Barry Brecheisen/HBO

Piano sounds were used in the "Game of Thrones" score for the very first time in the season six finale, "The Winds of Winter."

The track, titled "The Light of the Seven," played over the long opening sequence where Cersei blows up the Sept of Baelor.

What are the House Lannister words?

Tyrion Lannister Game of Thrones season eight HBO Helen Sloan
Peter Dinklage as Tyrion Lannister in "Game of Thrones."

Helen Sloan/HBO

The House Lannister words are "Hear Me Roar."

People might mistake the saying associated with Lannisters (that they "always pay their debts") with their actual house words. 

Name three people Melisandre burned alive in the name of the Lord of Light.

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Carice Van Houten as Melisandre in "Game of Thrones."


In the show, the three most prominent people Melisandre burned alive were Axell Florent, Mance Rayder, and Shireen Baratheon.

How many total episodes are there of "Game of Thrones"?

Daenerys Targaryen Emilia Clarke on Game of Thrones season 8 episode 6 The Iron Throne finale
Emilia Clarke as Daenerys Targaryen.

Helen Sloan/HBO

There are 73 total episodes of "Game of Thrones."

What was significant about the score playing during the series finale scene when Brienne filled out Jaime's page in the White Book?

Brienne writing in book
Gwendoline Christie as Brienne of Tarth in "Game of Thrones."


It was wedding music. Composer Ramin Djawadi used the same melody from Robb Stark and Talisa's wedding scene in season two for this shared moment between Brienne and Jaime. 

Fans first noticed this connection, and then Djawadi confirmed the wedding theme in an interview with Insider. 

"It's just a hint of what their relationship — if they had stayed together, if he was still alive — what it could have been," Djawadi said.


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