- "Why shouldn't we rule ourselves again? It was the dragons we bowed to! And now the dragons are dead! There sits the only king I mean to bend my knee to: the King in the North!"
- ―Greatjon Umber swears fealty to Robb Stark.
Lord Jon Umber, commonly called "the Greatjon" due to his large size, was the Lord of Last Hearth, the head of House Umber, and a formidable and proud bannerman of House Stark. He fought for Robb Stark in the War of the Five Kings. His role as Robb's chief northern advisor is taken up by Lord Roose Bolton. Despite sometimes standing up against Robb when disagreeing with his decisions, he is fiercely loyal to the Starks of Winterfell, and is in fact the first lord to propose crowning Robb the King in the North.
Jon Umber is the Lord of Last Hearth and the head of House Umber, a loyal vassal family to House Stark of Winterfell. He is a large, proud, and formidable warrior. He is the father of Jon Umber, who is commonly called "Smalljon" to differentiate the two, and with whom he apparently did not have a very strong relationship.
Robb Stark sends ravens to the bannermen of House Stark instructing them to assemble for a march south to King's Landing to free Eddard Stark. The Greatjon leads a contingent of Umber troops to join the Stark army assembling at Winterfell. He is furious when Robb appoints Galbart Glover to lead the vanguard of the army during a feast at Winterfell. The Greatjon demands the honor for himself and refuses to follow a Glover into battle, threatening to take his troops home. Robb challenges him by saying that he will arrest him as a traitor on his return from the South. The Greatjon draws his knife and Robb's direwolf Grey Wind barrels down the table and knocks him off his feet. Grey Wind bites off two of the Greatjon's fingers. Robb mercifully offers that The Greatjon drew his knife in order to cut his meat for him and the Greatjon laughs off the incident calling Robb's meat tough.
Catelyn Stark joins the army at Moat Cailin. The Greatjon vows that they will smash the Lannisters and march on to King's Landing to rescue Lord Eddard. He objects to Robb releasing a Lannister scout from custody, but Robb exercises his authority and the Greatjon reluctantly accepts his decision. The scout had overestimated the size of Robb's forces.
After hearing of the execution of Lord Eddard, the Greatjon declares that he will never accept any king of House Baratheon as his ruler again, and leads the bannermen of House Stark as well as the Riverlords in proclaiming Robb the King in the North.
While King Robb Stark invades the Westerlands, Greatjon Umber is tasked with liberating the Riverlands from Lannister occupation. Lord Umber expels the Lannisters from Raventree Hall, then restoring the ancient castle of House Blackwood, and then wins another victory at Stone Hedge, which is then reclaimed by its rightful lord, Jonos of House Bracken.
After Bran decides to travel north of the wall, he sends Osha and Rickon to the holdfast of Greatjon Umber for safety.
When the Greatjon's son, Smalljon Umber, arrives at Winterfell to hand Rickon Stark over to Ramsay Bolton, he reveals that the Greatjon has died, and Ramsay accordingly addresses the Smalljon as "Lord Umber". He tells Ramsay he might have killed his father himself if he had not "died on his own", implying that his relationship with his father was not a pleasant one.
During Sam and Gilly's visit at Horn Hill, Sam's mother mentions that she and her husband once met Lord Umber from Last Hearth, who said he taught all his daughters how to hunt. Since Smalljon has become Lord Umber only recently, the lord to whom Melessa refers is presumably Greatjon.
Smalljon then betrays his father's beliefs and House Umber's previous loyalty to House Stark by offering Rickon and Osha as a gift to House Bolton, to be held as prisoners and used as leverage against the Starks. Smalljon is later killed by Tormund Giantsbane in the Battle of the Bastards, which ends with House Stark's restoration as the rulers of the North and the extinction of House Bolton.
|Season One appearances|
|Winter Is Coming||The Kingsroad||Lord Snow||Cripples, Bastards, and Broken Things||The Wolf and the Lion|
|A Golden Crown||You Win or You Die||The Pointy End||Baelor||Fire and Blood|
- Greatjon: "For thirty years, I've been making corpses out of men, boy. I'm the man you want leading the vanguard."
- Robb Stark: "Galbart Glover will lead the van."
- Greatjon: "The bloody wall will melt before an Umber marches behind a Glover! I will lead the van, or I will take my men and march them home."
- Robb Stark: "You are welcome to do so, Lord Umber. And when I am done with the Lannisters, I will march back north, root you out of your keep and hang you for an oathbreaker."
- Greatjon: "Oathbreaker, is it? I will not sit here and swallow insults from a boy so green he pisses grass!"
- — Jon Umber argues with Robb Stark over who will lead the vanguard.[src]
- "Come on, pretty man."
- ―Jon Umber to a captured Jaime Lannister.
Behind the scenes
- On 9 July 2012 it was revealed that Mantle was not able to return for the second season due to a scheduling clash. He was not asked to return for the third season either, with much of the Greatjon's scenes given to Brynden Tully.
- Nevertheless, Bryan Cogman confirmed in his Twitter account that the Greatjon was not present at the Red Wedding and remains alive and free. However, he was confirmed in "Oathbreaker" to have died, indicating he perished between the events of the third and sixth seasons.
In the books
In the A Song of Ice and Fire novels, Jon Umber, dubbed "the Greatjon," is a huge bear of a man, standing slightly under seven feet tall, who makes for a fierce, loyal friend but a savage and dangerous enemy. He is the Lord of Last Hearth, the northern-most castle of the North, barred only the lands held by the Night's Watch. After his initial defiance of Robb in which he loses two of his fingers to Robb's direwolf, he becomes respectful to Robb for standing up to him, and he becomes one of the King in the North's greatest champions and supporters. As in the TV series, it is the Greatjon who first declares that Robb should be crowned king of an independent North, rather than submit to southern kings again.
The Greatjon has unknown number of brothers, sons and daughters; his eldest son and heir, also named Jon and nicknamed "Smalljon", is the only of Greatjon's children who appears in the novels. The Greatjon also has two uncles, Mors and Hother (nicknamed "Crowfood" and "Whoresbane" respectively). "Smalljon" is nicknamed to denote his younger age, not a reference to his size; he is, in fact, almost as large as his father and is noted to still be growing and may even end up larger than his father. In the novels, both Greatjon and Smalljon are fiercely loyal to Robb, and there is no hint of animosity between the two. It is not mentioned whether the Greatjon has any grandchildren.
In A Clash of Kings, the Greatjon remains in Robb Stark's army when the King in the North invades the Westerlands, while each Riverlord is given leave to reclaim their own lands from Lannister occupation.
Following the battle of Oxcross, the Greatjon is assigned to capture several gold mines in the Westerlands, in order to hurt the Lannisters; he successfully seizes the gold mines at Castamere, Nunn's Deep, and the Pendric Hills.
In A Storm of Swords, the Greatjon attends the Red Wedding. Merrett Frey was given the task of getting the Greatjon too drunk to fight by engaging him in a drinking contest. Despite consuming a vast quantity of wine (enough to kill any three normal men) and outdrinking his competitors, when the massacre begins, the Greatjon still grabs a sword and fights valiantly. It takes eight men to overcome him, and he kills one and injures two. Even when he can no longer fight with his hands, he fights with his teeth, and bites off half the ear of one of the assailants.
The Greatjon is among the few guests who are taken alive by the Freys (alongside Edmure, Marq Piper and Patreck Mallister), while Smalljon is killed by Dreadfort men while defending Robb. He remains a hostage at the Twins to ensure House Umber doesn't rise against the House Bolton or the Iron Throne. As a result, Greatjon's uncle Hother Umber reluctantly bends his knee to the Boltons, but his other uncle Mors Umber joins Stannis in defiance.
Greatjon is presumably among those who are delivered to the custody of the Lannisters, after Jaime Lannister informs the Freys that King Tommen requires all the political prisoners they took at the Red Wedding.
|Seat:||Last Hearth||Lands:||The North|
|Title(s):||Lord of Last Hearth|
|Ancestors:||Daragh Umber · Morag Umber · Hothor Umber · Amarylis Umber · Harkon Umber · Mycah Umber · Lucan Umber · Gareth Umber · Joseth Umber · Regan Umber · Corin Umber · Brandon Umber · Kear Umber · Finn Umber · Emilia Umber · Morgana Umber · Maynard Umber · Cedric Umber|
|Deceased members:||Greatjon Umber · Smalljon Umber|