Peter Vaughan, Maester Aemon Of ‘Game Of Thrones,’ Dies At 93

By December 7, 2016


You may not know him by name, but you certainly might remember him for his roles – including a key one in the early seasons of HBO’s Game of Thrones.

Peter Vaughan, who played The Wall’s Maester Aemon in the Emmy-winning series, has died. He was 93.

His agent, Sally Long-Innes, told BBC the news early Tuesday.

“This is to confirm that very sadly Peter Vaughan passed away at approximately 10:30 this morning. He died peacefully with his family around him.”

petervaughan2-inset120616Although approaching his 90s, Vaughan jumped hard into Game of Thrones, appearing in 11 episodes between 2011 and 2015 as the mystic-like doctor assigned to one of the coldest parts of Westeros.

His character Aemon was one of the last of the Targaryen lines (outside of Daenerys Targaryen, and another character we’ll leave unnamed because we didn’t put spoiler warnings on the story).

When both of Aemon’s brothers died, he was actually offered the crown of the Seven Kingdoms, but turned it down to honor his vows to the Night’s Watch.

Vaughan’s last episode was 2015’s “The Gift” where his character died at the age of (at least) 104, and was given a warrior-like burial.

Internet Movie Database lists more than 200 credits for Vaughan over his lifetime, beginning with the British series Stage by Stage in 1954.

Although it doesn’t source where the quote comes from, IMDb says Vaughan had a rather unique approach to acting. One which forced him to take every single part seriously.

“I have always approached every part I have done as if it will be my last, and that it’s the one I will be judged by.”

Peter Ewart Ohm was born April 4, 1923 in England, the son of an Austrian immigrant bank clerk, and a nurse. He took on theatre work almost immediately after leaving school, stopping only for World War II.

vaughan-inset120616His parts over the years are so numerous, it’s nearly impossible to spotlight all of them. Some of the higher profile ones, however, include the 1960 cult horror film Village of the Damned, as Bill Sikes in the 1962 television miniseries Oliver Twist, and as the rarely seen but highly popular Harry Grout in the 1970s British series Porridge.

Vaughan also appeared alongside a who’s who of geekdom in the 1985 Terry Gilliam film Brazil. Vaughan played the wheelchair-bound Mr. Helpmann in a film that included later Game of Thrones co-star Jonathan Pryce, Robert De Niro, Lord of the Rings‘ Ian Holm, and Harry Potter’s Jim Broadbent.

Vaughan played Fritz Koenig in a 1988 television adaptation of Robert Ludlum’s novel series The Bourne Identity with Richard Chamberlain playing Jason Bourne. He would later appear in Frank Oz’s 2007 comedy Death at a Funeral that would include another later Thrones star, Peter Dinklage.

Vaughan is survived by his wife, Lillias Walker, and a stepdaughter.

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Michael Hinman

Michael Hinman

Managing Editor at GeekNation
Michael began what has become nearly 19 years of entertainment reporting as the founder of SyFy Portal, which would become Airlock Alpha after he sold the SyFy brand to NBC Universal. He's based out of New York City where he is the editor of a Pulitzer Prize-winning newspaper in the Bronx.