‘Game of Thrones’: Everything You Need to Know about Ned Umber and the Last Hearth – Decider

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The most brutal scene in the Game of Thrones Season 8 premiere saw the end to young Ned Umber. The child-lord of The Last Hearth had to return to his castle to shepherd his people to Winterfell. However, the White Walkers and the Army of the Dead got there before the Umbers and their bannermen could leave, thus giving us our first chilling scene of Game of Thrones Season 8.

But who was Ned Umber? Why was his family so important? What is The Last Hearth? And why is this a big deal for Game of Thrones Season 8? Here’s everything you need to know about Ned Umber and The Last Hearth.

Who Was Ned Umber?

Ned Umber was the 10-year-old Lord of the Last Hearth. Ned was likely named for Lord Eddard Stark by his father, Jon Umber, known as “Littlejon,” in contrast to his own father, “Greatjon” Umber.

In the aftermath of the Battle of the Bastards, many Northern lords and Knights of the Vale wanted to see Ned Umber stripped of his land and titles, but in the Season 7 premiere, Jon Snow refuses. Ned Umber and another child of traitors, Alys Karstark, declare their undying allegiance to House Stark. (Though at this point, Alys Karstark is still alive, and Ned is dead.)

Gif of Ned Umber's dead body

Why Did House Umber Betray The Starks?

Greatjon Umber was one of Robb Stark’s most loyal bannermen and came to respect the “Young Wolf” after the direwolf Grey Wind bit off two of his fingers for questioning the new lord’s battle plan. Later in Season 1, Greatjon Umber led the call to declare Robb Stark the King in the North.

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Greatjon Umber was absent at the Red Wedding, but died before the events of Game of Thrones Season 6. We know this because his son, Littlejon Umber arrives at Winterfell and breaks the news to Ramsay Bolton. Because Jon Snow let the Wildings pass into the North, Littlejon Umber declares for House Bolton. It is he who offers Rickon Stark and Osha to Ramsay, solidifying their deaths. Littlejon is also responsible for killing Rickon’s direwolf, Shaggydog.

What and Where Is The Last Hearth?

The Last Hearth is a castle located just south of the Wall, and it is the closest stronghold to the Wall in general. It has been the home of the Umbers for centuries. Because of its position, it would naturally be the first place the Army of the Dead would hit. The next major stronghold is the Karhold, Alys Karstark’s home…but it looks like she made it out with her people just in time.

Night's Watch finds Wildings corpses Beyond the Wall in Game of Thrones

Why Was Ned Umber Left to Wait For Tormund, Ser Beric, and the Night’s Watch?

Since the first scene of Game of Thrones, we’ve known that the White Walkers like to arrange the corpses of their victims in peculiar patterns…and to use the corpses of children to lure victims close. There seem to be some hidden meaning behind these elaborate patterns, which we will be diving into later this week.

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