Game of Thrones is brimming with characters that are just as rich and interesting as the historically-inspired fantasy worlds they reside in. Yet, few can match the inspirational and intriguing Arya Stark. A fiery Northern girl, faceless assassin, and lone-wolf fighter, Arya has endured countless trials and tribulations during her odyssey which spans 8 seasons, and the length of both Westeros and Essos.
While she evolves into a ruthless, deadly assassin, she also retains a cunning, charming quality, and has provided some of the show's deepest, most enduring quotes.
So let's unsheathe Needle and slip on our masks as we take a look at Arya's 10 best quotes in Game of Thrones.
10 "I'm Not A Lady. I Never Have Been. That's Not Me."
Arya establishes early on in Season 1 to Ned and others that she doesn't want to be a "lady" in the way Westeros society expects her to be. Her turbulent character arch manages to come full-circle when Gendry requests she marry him, so the two can rule the Stormlands together.
Arya reestablishes her independent nature and fighter's spirit by turning down his proposition and informing him that merely existing as the lady to some Lord isn't in her character, nor does it fit into her aspirations. It's a powerful line of dialogue, and largely solidifies Arya's unique sensibilities of non-conformity.
9 "I Can't Sleep Until I Say The Names."
As Arya and the Hound set camp and ready for some sleep, Arya begins to repeat the names of a seemingly random list of people as if it were a laundry list of important tasks to complete, or a math equation to recall.
Though, most who have followed the events of season 1 will be privy to the fact that these aren't just randomly spouted names, but rather the people that have killed her loved ones. They are the people that she has targeted to exact revenge and kill. This is an eye-opening revelation by itself, but it's followed up with this amusing line when The Hound tells her to can it. It shows, in an ever-so-subtle way, just how determined Arya is to get her vengeance, and presents a crystal-clear, singular focus for her character.
8 "Stick Them With The Pointy End."
Arya is partly an embodiment of her father and brother Jon Snow - a fighter with the wolf-spirit of a Stark through and through. This quote stands as one of those enduring, ongoing quotes that Arya speaks which reminds us of her relationship with these Starks.
It was Jon who presented her with the sword she wields, Needle, and gives her this simple instruction in jest. She then tells it to her father, Ned, as a validation when confronted about the dangers of using the sword. Despite its simplicity, this is a charming call-back line that ties Arya to her family and reinforces her fighting nature.
7 "With The Faces, I Can Choose. I Can Become Soneone Else."
During a particularly tense scene that (wrongly) hints of Arya and Sansa's relationship developing a schism, the fiery Stark girl justifies her practice in the guild of the Faceless Men. She even establishes that she can become Sansa if she wanted to, which leads the viewer to question if she would do this? After all, Arya has undergone a somewhat dark transformation and has made a name for herself as a renegade assassin.
Alas, this turns out to be a misdirection, but it does provide a hint of sibling rivalry between Arya and Sansa. It also further illustrates the significance of the Faceless Men as a way to grant her the desire to separate and be someone else.
6 "A Bruise Is A Lesson... And Each Lesson Makes Us Better."
In much the same way that the Stark girl quotes lines spoken by her family, she also shows her inspiration and devotion to Syrio Forel by speaking this inspirational line, a variant of "every hurt is a lesson, and every lesson makes us better."
The bruise analogy certainly fits Arya's dark, tragic history, along with her philosophy of overcoming hardships and becoming stronger through adversity. This quote has become iconic to the point of birthing t-shirts which display this empowering phrase.
5 "I Know Death. He's Got Many Faces. I Look Forward To Seeing This One."
While Arya has little exposure to the White Walkers, even by the opening of the final season, she makes it clear to Gendry that she's not exactly phased by an army of undead. She's had close encounters with death, violence, and has herself slain many at this point, so what's to fear about some ice zombies?
This is a clever quote which reinforces Arya's strength, though it also serves as some foreshadowing for the otherwise surprising ending to "The Long Night" episode of season 8. In it, Arya leaps from the shadows and takes out the Night King, catching him off guard as he zeroes in on Bran. It seems her embracing of death has turned her into quite the effective assassin even managing to kill a manifestation of death itself.
4 "Nothing Isn't Better Or Worse Than Anything. Nothing Is Just Nothing."
Arya learns the mantra of "wiping the slate clean" and existing as "no one" when being initiated into the guild of the Faceless Men. This philosophical food for thought is certainly a representation of her character and place in the world during the middle of Game of Thrones.
Stripped of just about everything and everyone she loves, Arya faces little choice but to lose her own identity. After being trained and occasionally put through the wringer by Jaqen H'ghar and other Faceless Men, she's is finally able to claim to be "no one" with sincerity. It's this training in stealth, evasion, and emotional disassociation that allows her to develop further as a character and accomplish her goals of revenge. When asked who taught her to fight during a sparring match with Brienne, she cleverly answers, "no one." No one, indeed.
3 "The Last Thing You're Going To See Is A Stark Smiling Down At You As You Die."
There aren't many feel-good moments in Game of Thrones that measure up to this bout of vengeance by Arya, especially after the grim events of previous seasons. After many episodes of anticipation building up to Arya's sworn revenge of Walder Frey, we finally see her swift plot come to fruition.
This is an impactful line which displays Arya's cunning as well as her relentlessness of exacting her own brand of vigilante justice. It's a powerful moment for her character and yet another reminder that, despite her innocent appearance, Arya is not to be messed with. It also acts as a satisfying payoff of the trials and tribulations of learning the ways of the Faceless Men as she was able to disguise herself to get to Walder.
2 "It's Where All The Maps Stop. That's Where I'm Going."
This heartfelt scene near the end of the Game of Thrones finale sees the remaining Stark children parting ways. For Arya, this means getting far away from the tragic losses and misery which she has borne witness. This doesn't mean Essos, but to a distant land never before alluded and apparently not known. She's going "west of Westeros," but beyond this, her destination is not revealed. This illustrates that Arya doesn't strive for the destination, but the journey itself, as well as to "escape" or become liberated.
It is a conclusion which somewhat parallels Frodo Baggins, who is another protagonist seeking to lift their burden. Arya is set to venture on her own, like the lone wolf she is. It's a bittersweet ending for her, but one that feels fitting.
1 "Leave One Wolf Alive And The Sheep Are Never Safe."
One of Arya's few quotes that actually surpasses the impact of her last line to Walder is when she addresses the Frey men disguised as Walder.
While season 7 as a whole received a tepid response from fans, it started off with a bang when "Walder Frey" addresses his men discussing the slaughtering of the Red Wedding bluntly. We soon discover this is not Frey, but actually Arya, as the men holding goblets of wine suddenly drop. The already powerful scene then closes out with this memorable line. It's a neat little Stark-themed allegory that adds the exclamation point to a pivotal scene in Game of Thrones.