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Ned Stark: “Do you know the first thing about sword fighting?”
Arya Stark: “Stick’em with the pointy end.”
Ned Stark: “That’s the essence of it.”
Needle is a thin sword wielded by Arya Stark. It was given to her by Jon Snow, who had it made by Mikken, the blacksmith of Winterfell. The sword is well suited to Arya’s slight build, which prevents her from fighting in the style of large male Westerosi knights, who employ powerful slashing moves and strong blocks using a heavy sword. Instead, Arya and Needle are much better suited to the “Water Dance” style of fencing popular in Braavos and other Free Cities, which emphasizes speed and agility with a thin, light rapier used in quick thrusting attacks.
Jon Snow gives Needle to Arya while she prepares her luggage for her journey to King’s Landing with her father, and he is going to the Wall with his uncle Benjen. He says it is skinny like her and gives her the advice of “stick them with the pointy end”. She gives the sword its name as a reference to how Sansa has always been better at needlework. “Sansa can keep her sewing needles; I’ve got a needle of my own.”
Text source: Game of Thrones Wikia. Source for gifs: Arya and Ned Stark Game of Thrones episode “Lord Snow” (S01E03).