HBO; Getty Images
By Charlotte Alter
June 15, 2015

Spoilers for Game of Thrones follow

If you watched Season 5 of Game of Thrones with a vague sense of déjà vu, you’re probably not alone. There were a lot of things this season that felt strangely familiar, or about as familiar as anything happening in a dragon-filled, White Walker-infested fictional universe can feel.

But if you experienced that sense of recognition, perhaps it’s because several plot points this season seem to be inspired by real-life history, or at least by myths so ancient they almost count. Here are 7 moments from Game of Thrones Season 5 that may have been inspired by those events; some of these have been hinted at by Martin himself, others are just parallels we’ve noticed as outside observers.

Either way, the resemblance is uncanny.

Write to Charlotte Alter at charlotte.alter@time.com.

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