Wildfire is one of the most dangerous substances in the Game of Thrones universe. That's saying a lot in a world where the dead walk and dragons live. This green liquid that burns everything it touches has been the downfall of at least two Targaryens, Joffrey's saving grace when under attack from his uncle Stannis Baratheon, and a constant point of concern for those who know of its existence. Perhaps we thought the use of wildfire would stop after Tyrion uses it to obliterate Stannis's fleet at the Battle of the Blackwater, but with Bran Stark's recent visions of an explosion of wildfire and Internet speculation that Cersei Lannister has a plan to put it to use, we thought it would make sense to take a closer look at wildfire.
What We Know of Wildfire
- It burns green and is bright green when in liquid form.
- It continues to burn until it burns itself out and is quite explosive.
- It burns through most materials, including steel.
- Only large quantities of sand can extinguish it.
- It is made by the pyromancers of the Alchemists' Guild, a group that had great influence before the Maesters pushed them aside.
- One of the Targaryens died by drinking it, thinking this would transform him into a dragon.
- Jaime Lannister told Brienne of Tarth that the Mad King was shouting "burn them all" and meant to consume King's Landing in wildfire, thus prompting Jaime to break his oath as a member of the King's Guard and take the Mad King's life.
- It is kept in clay containers, often packed with sand between containers to keep them from jostling.
- Rumour has it the pyromancers kept jars of it underground all over King's Landing, including under the Red Keep and the Great Sept of Baelor (the religious centre of worship for the Faith of the Seven).
Where We've Seen Wildfire
- On the show, we all remember it from the moment when Tyrion saves King's Landing in the Battle of the Blackwater. Cersei was gathering wildfire and planning to lob it at Stannis's ships with catapults, but Tyrion puts it to better use by pouring it onto the water and having Bronn set it alight with a flaming arrow.
- In the fourth book, Cersei uses wildfire to burn down the Tower of the Hand, in hopes of finding (or killing) Tyrion.
Knowing that Cersei has planned on using wildfire before and does use it in a personal way in the books, it should not come as a surprise that rumour has it she means to use it again — especially after King Tommen took away her right to trial by combat. Consider that with the rumour that there may be stores of wildfire under the Great Sept of Baelor, you have to wonder if she might be preparing to use wildfire to strike back at the Faith Militant.