Gilly has come a long way on Game of Thrones. In the early seasons she was illiterate, and in new Season 7 photos, she’s reading game-changing information for the story.
The first crop of Season 7 photos show Sam and Gilly at the Citadel reading old texts. Enterprising fans have zoomed in and determined that Gilly is reading an entry from The World of Ice and Fire. Much like Fantastic Beasts and Where to Find Them in the Harry Potter world — which was written by “Newt Scamander” in the world and J.K. Rowling outside of it — The World of Ice and Fire is both a real book of Westeros lore that has been published in the real world and it’s a text within the Game of Thrones world, written by a maester named Yandel.
According to a fan on Reddit, here’s the full text she’s looking at:
“It is also written that there are annals in Asshai of such a darkness, and of a hero who fought against it with a red sword. His deeds are said to have been performed before the rise of Valyria, in the earliest age when Old Ghis was first forming its empire. This legend has spread west from Asshai, and the followers of R’hllor claim that this hero was named Azor Ahai, and prophesy his return. In the Jade Compendium, Colloquo Votar recounts a curious legend from Yi Ti, which states that the sun hid its face from the earth for a lifetime, ashamed at something none could discover, and that disaster was averted only by the deeds of a woman with a monkey’s tail.”
The one change from the book series to the HBO show is that Gilly’s page says “The Lord of Light” rather than “R’hllor,” most likely to keep things simple for viewers. Gilly’s text is also just an excerpt — it begins at “a hero who fought” and cuts off at “Yi Ti.”
The most pertinent line is about Azor Ahai, of course. He was a legendary warrior years before the events of the show, but he’s supposed to be reborn to save the modern world from darkness in a prophecy known as “The Prince That Was Promised.” Melisandre has mentioned him several times; her visions in the flames originally led her to believe this was Stannis. Both Melisandre and most fans alike now believe the Prince that Was Promised is Jon Snow, and the Season 7 photo of Jon might be slyly nodding to it.
If Jon Snow is indeed Azor Ahai reborn, he’ll be more likely to believe this news if it comes from Sam and Gilly rather than Melisandre.
Game of Thrones Season 7 premiers on July 16, 2017 on HBO.