1. He may be known the world over as Kit, but his real name is actually Christopher Catesby Harington.

2. Although he didn't actually know that was his real name until he was 11 years old because his family only ever called him Kit.

And he wasn't very pleased when he found out! He told CNN: "It's my name. It's short for Christopher. I didn't know my name was Christopher until I was 11. I went to school, you do these exams and I put down Kit Harington and the teacher said, 'That's not your name,' and I said, 'Yeah I think I'd know my own name!' They were like, 'No no your name is Christopher.' I was a bit pissed off with my mum. You didn't tell me my name till I was 11!"

In 2014 Glamour asked him why his parents hadn't told him before and he responded: "I haven't got a clue! I think they could see that I wanted to be Kit, but Christopher was a bit of a tradition. My brother's name is Jack, but his real name is John. Kit is traditionally an offshoot of Christopher, it's just not used that often."

3. His middle name, Catesby, is actually his mother's maiden name and he almost chose to be known professionally as Kit Catesby instead.

He told Glamour: "It's cool, isn't it? It's also my brother's middle name. Jake Catesby and Kit Catesby. It's my mom's maiden name, actually... I nearly [went with Kit Catesby professionally], but I thought it sounded too much like a 1950s talk-show host. I was close, actually! Sometimes I think, that would have been a cool name, but Kit Harington works."

4. Speaking of his mother (who was a playwright herself) – she named him after fellow British playwright Christopher Marlowe, who was also better known as Kit.

5. Kit started his career on stage.

6. In fact, he played the lead male in War Horse while he was still at drama school.

7. And it was during that run that he caught the attention of Game of Thrones producers, who invited him in for an audition.

He was tasked with reading a scene with Tyrion Lannister. And the rest, as they say, is history.

8. Although he turned up to that first audition with a black eye after having a fight in a McDonald's the night before.

But it's OK because he thinks it made him look tougher. He told the Daily Mail: "I had a black eye as I'd been in a scrap. But I think it might have helped. You know, 'Who's the kid with the black eye?' I was completely new to them, but I looked the part – still had the black eye."

Show creator D.B. Weiss also remembers that first audition, telling Rolling Stone he remembers whispering to co-creator David Benioff: "This is what Jon Snow looks like, please let this kid be good."

9. He had short hair and no facial hair pre Game of Thrones and he'd never tried to grow it before. He didn't even know his hair was naturally curly.

He remembers: "I always had short hair before I did this, and then they went 'Could you grow your hair and a beard?' And I went, 'Well, I’ve never grown my hair, and I’m practically pre-pubescent in the facial-hair stakes, but I’ll give it a go!'"

10. Although he had to wear a wig for the pilot episode.

He told BBC Breakfast last year: "I had a horrible wig on." And as a result he's pleased no one's ever seen the pilot (which btw featured a different Daenerys Targaryen, played by Tamzin Merchant rather than Emilia Clarke): "The pilot really didn’t work. No one’s ever seen it, it’s in some back room somewhere, and I’d like it to stay there!"

11. But now he is contractually obliged to keep his hair long the entire time.

He told Rolling Stone: "It's in my contract that it must be a certain length at all times."

But he can't wait until he can finally cut it again now: "I told my agent, no more swords, no more horses. You [don't want to get stuck in things] and maybe I can cut my fucking hair."

12. He's 5'8", hence some of the height gags in Game of Thrones.

13. He had a broken ankle throughout season 3 after hurting himself while trying to climb into his apartment when drunk a few weeks before filming began.

It meant that a body double had to step in for that bum shot during his sex scene with Ygritte. He told GQ: "Young male stupidity, really. I didn’t see any point in lying about it to anyone afterward."

14. In Season 6 he faced his worst fear – he's terrified of being buried alive and is extremely claustrophobic, so the "Battle of the Bastards" epic fight scene was his idea of a nightmare thanks to being trapped under piles of bodies.

Kit told the Belfast Telegraph after shooting the episode: "I’ve got a few fears, spiders being one of them, but the worst is my claustrophobia – I’m mortally afraid of crowds. I panic. It was one of the most terrifying things and most uncomfortable – 15 bearded Irishmen crushing you.

"There was a moment where he could’ve just lay down and let go of the hell he’s in, and sleep, like drowning, but it cuts to the heart of Jon, that he fights his way up to the top”

15. He also accidentally really punched Iwan Rheon (Ramsay Bolton) in the face twice during filming for that episode.

"I actually did punch Iwan in the face, twice, by accident, which he took really well."

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