Game of Thrones is dominating everything on television at the moment, but in the mixture of fantasy and role-play lies a rich history very few viewers have considered. There are many theories what inspired Martin to write Game of Thrones.
But perhaps you should hear it from Martin himself, along with the historians in this documentary describing exactly what inspired him to write the novel along with the many events that contributed to the novel Game of Thrones.
You don't need a history degree to know that what goes on in Game of Thrones is entirely fictional. (Fire-breathing dragons should've given it away) But that doesn't mean the bloody conflicts in Westeros don't draw on real-life history, either.
Author George R.R. Martin has said it himself that he was inspired by the War of the Roses in 15th-century England while writing the books.
Kings and Queens have always battled for the throne and supremacy throughout human history, but what sets Game of Thrones apart is how the Martin brought curiosity into the plot-line of fragmented personas and questionable morality.
If reading about it doesn't excite you enough, then perhaps hearing it from the man himself in the video posted below will bring a much clearer understanding.