It’s been a long time since we’ve seen Nymeria on Game of Thrones. But now that she’s back, it’s time to look back on her history on the show, how she was portrayed in the books, and what might be next for Nymeria and Arya.
A large wolf was shown growling at Arya in the trailer for Season 7 Episode 2. This immediately sparked rumors that the wolf might actually be Arya’s long-lost direwolf, Nymeria.
Nymeria is only one of two Stark direwolves left alive in the show.
Here’s what you need to know. Spoilers through Season 7 Episode 2.
We Haven’t Seen Nymeria Since Season 1
When Ned Stark found a dead mother direwolf in Season 1, he adopted all her pups and gave one to each of his children. (Thanks to Jon Snow’s request.) Arya named Nymeria after a warrior queen. (Interestingly, one of the Sands is also named Nymeria.)
Nymeria accompanies Arya on the way to King’s Landing. But the direwolf pup ran into trouble when Arya and Prince Joffrey got into a fight. Nymeria came to Arya’s defense by biting Joffrey’s arm. Arya was rightfully scared that Nymeria was in danger for what she did, so they ran off to the woods. Arya forced Nymeria to leave, even throwing a stone at her to chase her away.
Even though Joffrey started the fight, Queen Cersei ordered Nymeria be killed. Since Nymeria was already gone, Sansa’s direwolf Lady was killed instead.
Things Got Interesting for Nymeria in the Books
We hadn’t heard about Nymeria for many seasons after she disappeared in Season 1. But she did come up again in the books. Her fate isn’t known, but Arya often dreamed that she was a direwolf leading a pack of grey wolves in the Riverlands. This may have actually been Arya warging into Nymeria, since the Starks have this ability within them (but it’s often dormant.)
In the books, Nymeria helped Brynden Tully escape Riverrun by leading a pack of wolves to attack the people pursuing him. It’s assumed this was Nymeria, since Ser Dermot mentions that a female direwolf was leading a pack of hundreds of wolves.
Did We See Nymeria?
When the growling wolf appeared in the trailer for Season 7 Episode 2, fans couldn’t contain their excitement, hoping this meant Nymeria was returning.
But Nymeria wouldn’t go with Arya when she invited her, and Arya said it wasn’t her. Is that true? Or is Nymeria a queen of her own pack, like in the books, and she’s not willing to leave her kingdom? It’s likely this was Nymeria, since she didn’t kill Arya when she could have.