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Character Ages


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#1 SFDanny

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Posted 01 October 2008 - 10:37 PM

There have been more than a few posts since I began frequenting this site asking about character ages. It is a frustrating question. Martin has decided to give us, the readers, very few firm dates, and as a result any chronology, including the ages of many characters at any given point in the story, is highly speculative.

After all, if we are given an age for a character - say Ned at age thirty-five (A Game of Thrones 12) - we only know that at that moment Lord Eddard is thirty-five. Now, we often guess that Ned's age is thirty-five in the Year 298 after Aegon's conquest, and therefore by simple subtraction he was born in Year 263. Right? Well, if Ned has a name day after we are told he is thirty-five but still in Year 298, then he was born in 262. If at the time we are told Ned's age it is not Year 298, then everything is screwed up.

So we don't know from this type of information in what year a character was born, if his/her name day is yet to come in the year or has already passed, or even what year it is when we are told the age. Even with the children of the story, for whom GRRM does give us an age in his appendices of each book, we are only given ages relative to the start of each story (in most cases anyway.) Again we have no way of knowing what year the story starts in, or even if a name day occurs in the story in which year it falls. At least on the surface it seems we are stuck with a series of snapshots concerning character ages that tell us nothing, or next to nothing, about our story's timeline.

I'd submit this is not the case, however. In point of fact, with a little analysis, character ages can tell us a great detail about the ASoI&F timeline. So, how to nail this down with only a few basic assumptions?* Contrary to all the problems this wonderful mess presents us, I think we can be as certain as we can be with a work of fiction around these facts:

Aemon "Maester Aemon" Targaryen was born in 198
Aegon V Targaryen "Egg" was born in 200** (read spoiler warning below before "clicking" the link)
Lord Walder Frey was born in 208
Grand Maester Pycelle was born in 215
Ser Barristan Selmy was born in 237
Rhaegar Targaryen was born in 259
Brandon Stark was born in 262
Eddard Stark was born in 263
Cersei Lannister was born in 266** (read spoiler warning below before "clicking" the link)
Jaime Lannister was born in 266** (read spoiler warning below before "clicking" the link)
Tyrion Lannister was born in 273** (read spoiler warning below before "clicking" the link)
Arianne Martell was born in 276 *** (read spoiler warning below before "clicking" the link)
Ser Loras Tyrell was born in 282
Robb Stark was born in 283
Meera Reed was born in 283
Jon Snow was born in 283
Margaery Tyrell was born in 283
Daenerys Targaryen was born in 284
Joffrey Baratheon was born in 286
Sansa Stark was born in 286
Trystane Martell was born in 287
Arya Stark was born in 289
Myrcella Baratheon was born in 290
Bran Stark was born in 290
Tommen Baratheon was born in 291
Rickon Stark was born in 295

We also know something about the timing of name days during the year. Again we can be fairly certain about this order:
Rickon, Joffrey, Tommen, Bran, Robb, Jon, Margaery, and Sansa.

In addition we know Myrcella's name day comes after Rickon, Arya, Joffrey, Trystane's and Tommen's, and before Robb's. We know Arya's name day falls before Bran's and Myrcella's, but we don't know if it falls before Rickon's, Joffrey's, and/or Tommen's. We know Trystane's name day falls after Joffrey's. We also know Daenerys's name day falls before Jon's. We also know Meera's name day falls after Bran's in the year and around the time of Robb's.

We can also be certain that in a given year Ned's name day precedes Littlefinger's which precedes Brandon's, and Grand Maester Pycelle's name day falls within the last three months of the year.

How do we know all of this? Look at the following posts and see if you don't agree, and pardon me for the length of these posts - it does take some time to sort this all out.

*I'm assuming time runs in the normal real life fashion, that name days are equivalent to our birthdays, that the Westerosi year is roughly equivalent to our own year - that it is made up of 12 turns of the moon (12 months of 30 days each with 5 possible days celebrated outside of each moon's turn for a total of 365 days in a year,) etc. Also, for clarity's sake, I should say all citations from the books are from US Hardback editions, except those from A Feast for Crows which are from the UK Hardback edition.

** Egg's, the Twins, and Tyrion's name days and the years in which they were born are dependent of information in A Dance with Dragons. If you don't want to read any spoilers, no matter how obscure, and haven't yet read that book, I'd suggest waiting to follow this links to the post that describe the reasons for determining these ages.

***Arianne's name day is known only through spoilers in TWoW sample chapter released on Martin's website

Special note: with very special thanks to Lady Blackfish for the information about Ned, Brandon, and Littlefinger; and to Other-in-law for the information on Grand Maester Pycelle.***

Edited by SFDanny, 12 February 2013 - 07:55 AM.


#2 SFDanny

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Posted 01 October 2008 - 10:43 PM

Joffrey
Martin does give us one very firm date. He tells us that when Joffrey and Margaery have their wedding it is the first day of the new century - Year 300 after the conquest. We are also told the ages of the bride (16) and the groom (13) on that day (A Storm of Swords 223.) This does give us some important information about these two characters. Unless their name days coincide with the first day of the new year, then they both had their sixteenth and thirteenth name days, respectively, in Year 299. Looking first at Joffrey, we are also told that Joffrey's thirteenth name day takes place way back in the first Sansa chapter of A Clash of Kings, so we can be sure he does not turn thirteen on the same day of his wedding, and we can be sure he does turn thirteen in Year 299. We can therefore be sure he is born in the Year 286. It is surprising how much other information we can nail down from just this set of facts.

To start with we know that every event that takes place in the story from Joffrey's thirteenth name day up to and including the day before his wedding with Margaery takes place in the year 299. That, of course, includes other character's name days, as well as a host of events. So, if we can be sure a name day for any of the other characters takes place between Joffrey's thirteenth name day and his wedding we know the year they are born, and just as importantly, perhaps, we can find some other markers for at least a relative timeline for Martin's world.

One such marker is Joffrey's twelfth name day. We are told that a fortnight before Jon Arryn dies a tourney is given for Joffrey's name day, and we know that at the reception feast in Winterfell he is also twelve. What this gives us is at least one date that we know is in Year 298, but unless we find another, and Martin does not tell us when the Year 298 ends, it is not of much value.

Margaery
Like Joffrey we know what Margaery's age is, sixteen, at their wedding on New Year's Day Year 300, and like Joffrey we also have an earlier reference to Margaery as 16 - thereby eliminating the slight chance of her name day coinciding with her wedding day. The reference is given us when Margaery enters King's Landing and Sansa tells us her age (ASoS 61.) This confirms that Margaery turns sixteen in Year 299, and does so before she arrives at King's Landing, and it tells us she is born in the Year 283 - the same year in which the Sack of King's Landing takes place and Aerys's rule comes to an end (AGoT 693.)

Knowing that Margaery is 15 turning 16 in 299, and therefore 14 turning 15 in 298, also gives us our other date in 298. This is because Varys tells us, in his disguised alter ego's discussion with Illyrio under the Red Keep, that,

The Knight of Flowers writes Highgarden, urging his lord father to send his sister to court. The girl is a maid of fourteen, sweet and beautiful and tractable, and Lord Renly and Ser Loras intend that Robert should bed her, wed her, and make a new queen. (AGoT 289.)

emphasis added


Because she is still fourteen, and this takes place after Joffrey's 12th name day, it tells us that everything in the same timeline after Joffrey's name day tourney and up to this point - Jon Arryn's death; Robert's trip to Winterfell; Ned's trip to behead Gared and the finding of the direwolves; the receiving of the news of Jon's death and Robert's impending arrival; the reception feast in Winterfell; Bran's fall; the exit of Robert and his party from Winterfell to go back to King's Landing; the leaving of Benjen, Jon, and Tyrion for the Wall, etc., etc. - must all be within the Year 298. The only AGoT events before this that we can't be certain occur in 298, at this point at least, are those in the prologue and the Daenerys story line. It is possible, with just this information to judge with, they occur in 297.

Edited by SFDanny, 01 January 2010 - 04:27 PM.


#3 SFDanny

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Posted 01 October 2008 - 10:44 PM

Jon
Arya tells us of Yoren's visit to see her father on the same night she tells him of the conversation she overhears earlier in the day between Varys and Illyrio. Because we know this is still in Year 298 from Varys comment about Margaery's age, and we know Yoren travels south with Tyrion after Jon turns fifteen because Jon thinks of his fifteenth name day having come and gone when talking to Tyrion about Benjen being gone too long - all of which obviously takes place before Tyrion and Yoren leave the Wall - we therefore know Jon's fifteenth name day must fall in year 298 and he is born in the Year 283.** It also tells us that Margaery's name day falls after Jon's during the year.
**An important note here is that Jon maybe the one character who doesn't know his true name day. We don't know if the day he celebrates as his name day is, in fact, the true date. If all the speculation about Jon being the child of Lyanna and Rhaegar turns out to be true, then Ned has a powerful motive to lie about Jon's name day. It would not be helpful in trying to keep such a secret for Jon's name day to fall on the anniversary of Lyanna's death. It just might make suspicious minds (aka Varys) begin to look further into Jon's origins. If this speculation is true, however, it can only mean an adjustment of Jon's name day from a few weeks to possibly a month. Any longer and we strain the believability of a lie to cover Jon's real age.

Also of note is Catelyn obviously thinks Jon is younger than Robb and this would only be possible if his name day has been celebrated after Robb's all the last fourteen years. Catelyn tells us as much when she thinks of Ned as a man with "a man's needs," who conceived Jon while away warring in the south after they are wed and Robb is conceived (AGoT 54-55.) This is later confirmed in Ned's account of Wylla to Robert (AGoT 92.) We can therefore be certain Jon's name day celebration falls after Robb's.

Robb
Robb turns sixteen a few days before Catelyn meets with Jaime in Riverrun and after Tyrion's plot to free Jaime is unmasked. Tyrion makes up this plot as Hand of the King, a post he takes up - at least temporarily in his father's absence - the same day of Joffrey's thirteenth name day (he arrives in King's Landing as the name day tourney is going on, and then proceeds to the small council meeting to present his letter to Cersei that same day.) This places Robb's name day after our first marker for Year 299. The discussion with Jaime takes place before Robb and Catelyn march north to the Red Wedding, which we know is before our other marker of Joffrey's and Margaery's wedding because news of their deaths arrive in King's Landing before the royal wedding takes place. Therefore we know for certain that Robb turns sixteen in Year 299 and we can be certain he was born in the Year 283.

Edited by SFDanny, 01 January 2010 - 04:35 PM.


#4 SFDanny

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Posted 01 October 2008 - 10:46 PM

Arya
Arya is ten when Roose Bolton asks her age when he arrives in Harrenhal (ACoK 520), an event that we know takes place in 299 (the news of it arrives in King's Landing after Joffrey's thirteenth name day and before his wedding,) and she is still ten when she escapes from Harrenhal (ASoS 36,) and, more importantly, she is again still ten when she is aboard the Titan's Daughter sailing to Braavos (AFfC 89.) This last event we know takes place after Joffrey's wedding because the Hound and Arya are informed of Joffrey's death during their confrontation with Polliver and the Tickler at the Crossroads Inn before Arya boards the ship at Saltpans.

Therefore Arya turns ten in the year 299 and she is born in the Year 289. Because Arya is nine when Robert is at Winterfell (AGoT 61) we know her ninth name day falls in the Year 298 before that event (or more specifically before she and Jon view Bran and Tommen sparring in the yard) and before Bran's name day.

Bran
Bran is still eight after he hears the news that Tyrion has sent Janos Slynt to the Wall (ACoK 188.) This obviously takes place after Tyrion arrives on Joffrey's name day and takes up his responsibility as Hand. And we know he is nine by the time he receives the news of Robb's victory at Oxcross (ACoK 326) and before the fall of Winterfell and his supposed death at the hands of Theon Greyjoy (news of which arrives in King's Landing before Joffrey's Wedding {[i]ACoK 535 & 581.})
Therefore Bran turns 9 in year 299 and he is born in 290.
Because Catelyn speaks of Robb turning sixteen only a "few days past" during her talk with Jaime in Riverrun, and adding to this the fact this is just after her getting the news of Bran and Rickon's "deaths," and the fact we know Bran has already turned nine (see the reference above to Robb's victory at Oxcross) all of which tells us that Bran's name day falls before Robb's in the year.

Edited by SFDanny, 01 January 2010 - 04:49 PM.


#5 SFDanny

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Posted 01 October 2008 - 10:48 PM

Tommen
Tommen is seven in 298 when Ned and Catelyn discuss him before the heart tree, and he is still seven when the welcoming feast is given at Winterfell. Later, after he becomes king upon Joffrey's death on New Year's Day 300 he is eight when Jaime lectures the Kingsguard on how to protect him, and he is almost 9 when Ser Loras asks to train him as a knight.
Because Tommen is seven at the welcoming feast in 298 we are presented with two options:

{a} Tommen is six turning seven in 298, seven turning eight in 299, and eight turning nine in 300.
{b} Tommen is seven turning eight in 298, eight turning nine in 299, and nine turning ten in 300.

Because he is still eight after the turning of the year to 300 we have to choose option "a."
All of which means he turned seven in 298 before coming to Winterfell and he was born in 291.
Here a special note must be made of two references to Tommen's age. Sansa twice uses the phrase "all of" to describe Tommen"s age. In both cases one reading of it would mean that Tommen is older than we are told by other characters. It becomes clear, however, that when Tommen is described as "all of eight" or "all of nine" Martin is telling us that he is near eight or near nine, instead of barely eight or barely nine. This is important, not only in sorting out Tommen's age, but also because Martin uses the same phrase when King Robert describes Jaime as "all of seventeen" when he sits on his throne as Ned brings his men into the Red Keep (AGoT 97.) This means it is very likely that GRRM is telling us that Jaime Lannister is still 16 when the Sack of King's Landing takes place in Year 283.

Myrcella
Myrcella is 9 when Cersei speaks to Tyrion of his proposed marriage of Myrcella to Trystane (ACoK 241) after Tyrion has become Hand (meaning it is in Year 299.) At the Winterfell feast welcoming Robert she is 7, almost 8.
Therefore she is eight in 298 and born in 290.

Edited by SFDanny, 09 May 2010 - 09:58 PM.


#6 SFDanny

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Posted 01 October 2008 - 10:51 PM

Sansa
Figuring out what year Sansa's name day falls in is perhaps the most difficult of all the main characters, at least as far as the children are concerned. Sansa tells us on the night of her wedding to Tyrion she is 13 "when the moon turns" (ASoS 324.) Because Sansa's wedding is before Joffrey's own wedding to Margaery and after Joffrey's 13th name day it has to be in 299. The question is then, does the "moon turn" before Joffrey's wedding day? We know the length of time for a moon turn, 30 days, from Arya's chapters in Braavos (AFfC 507.) So can we tell if 30 days pass after Sansa and Tyrion are wed before the new year comes? Yes, we can.
First, it should be said that 30 days is the maximum time we have to account for because Sansa's reference could be to the turning of the moon in the next week, in a fortnight, or any time less than 30 days. If we find a difference of more than 30 between Sansa's marriage to Tyrion and Joffrey's marriage, we can be sure Sansa's 13th name day falls within Year 299 and she is born in Year 286.
Next, we know from comparing the distance of the length of the Wall (known to be 100 leagues or 300 miles) to the distance from King's Landing to Riverrun and to The Twins to be approximately 540 miles and 802.5 miles respectively. Why is this important? Well to start with because the night before Hoster Tully's funeral a message arrives from King's Landing telling Robb of Sansa's wedding to Tyrion (ASoS 397.)
If we give the raven an average speed of 8 mph, this translates to a minimum of about three days (2.81 really) for the raven to arrive in Riverrun with the news. Assuming the message is sent on the day of the wedding, we therefore start with minimum of three days passing from Sansa's wedding to Hoster Tully's funeral. From there we can count days that are marked in the chapters leading up to the Red Wedding and the time it would take for a raven to deliver the news of the Red Wedding to King's Landing from the Twins - the news of which arrives before Joffrey's and Margaery's own wedding on New Year's Day 300 (ASoS 591.) How long after the message of the Red Wedding is delivered the royal wedding takes place is unknown, but we can at least be sure of the minimum number of days that have passed between Sansa's wedding and the beginning of Year 300. Here then is the tally:

From Sansa's wedding to the delivery of the news in Riverrun

3 days

From receipt of the news to Hoster Tully's funeral

1 day

From funeral to departure of Robb and his troops from Riverrun

1 day (minimum)

From Riverrun to Jeyne's departure back to Riverrun

1 day (ASoS 516)

From Jeyne's departure to Edmure and Cat's argument

1 day (ASoS 516)

From E & C's argument to the Whispering Wood

1 day minimum(ASoS 517-8)

From the Whispering Wood to the news of Fairmarket bridge

5 days (ASoS 518)

From Fairmarket bridge news to Oldstones

8 days (ASoS 519)

From Oldstones to Catelyn talk with the Mormonts

2 days minimum (ASoS 522)

From Mormont talk to Hag's Mire

2 days minimum (ASoS 523)

From the Green Fork to the Twins

1 day minimum (ASoS 555)

From arrival at the Twins to Red Wedding

1 day

From the Red Wedding to delivery of the news to King's Landing

4 days

Total

31 days minimum

This is a very conservative estimate of the minimum time between these two events. It is much more likely, given the description of the slog of Robb's army through rain-drenched terrain plus the probable need for more than one day to prepare for this trip, that this is a much more time consuming journey. My guess would be at least 7 to 10 days longer.
Therefore, because the minimum time period that has passed between Sansa's wedding night and the arrival of the news of the Red Wedding in King's Landing, is longer than the turn of a moon, we can be sure Sansa's 13th name day falls before the beginning of year 300 and she is born in Year 286.

Edited by SFDanny, 05 April 2010 - 12:58 PM.


#7 SFDanny

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Posted 01 October 2008 - 10:58 PM

Rickon
Rickon is three at the welcoming feast in Winterfell, he is "near four" when Robb leaves Winterfell, and he is four when the news of Eddard's death comes to Winterfell. He is still four when Winterfell is taken by Theon Greyjoy and his Ironmen raiders.
Because Rickon is three during the welcoming feast at Winterfell, an event that takes place in the known Year 298 timeframe, it gives us two possibilities:

{a} Rickon is two turning three in 298, three turning four in 299, and four turning five in 300, or
{b} Rickon is three turning four in 298, four turning five in 299, and five turning six in 300.

This tells us that if Rickon is still four in Year 300 that the first scenario is the only one that can be true.
We are told in the appendix to A Feast for Crows - a book that takes place almost entirely in Year 300 (only the prologue and "The Prophet" chapters take place in 299) - that Rickon is still four (AFfC 726) and because every reference to Rickon takes place in chapters after the beginning of Year 300 we are left with only option "a." Therefore we know Rickon was born in Year 295, and because he is four before the comet's arrival we know his name day falls before Joffrey's whose 13th name day falls when the comet is clearly visible in the day. (ACoK 28)

Daenerys
When Illyrio and Varys meet under the Red Keep the Spider tells us that Daenerys is pregnant. This event is pegged in 298 because of Varys's mention of Margaery's age, and the fact he also speaks of Daenerys's pregnancy tells us she has turned 14 either in Year 298, or, if the news is very long in getting to Varys, in 297. This is so because we know Dany only confirms her pregnancy to her handmaids on her fourteenth name day (AGoT 199.) Unless we assume Varys and his spy, Ser Jorah, have special methods of detecting Dany's pregnancy before Daenerys tells even her closest of confidants, then the news of the pregnancy can only reach Varys after she is 14.
Because we know Rickon turns four in early 299 and the Red Comet first appears after he is four in Bran's last AGoT chapter (in which the news of Eddard's death arrives in Winterfell) and therefore we know the events chronicling the start of Daenerys's journey into the Red Wastes following the comet all take place after the start of Year 299. So, when we are told she is fourteen at the start of this journey (ACoK143) we know she is still 14 in 299. This means we can rule out the possibility that she turned 14 in 297 (she would have had to turn 15 sometime in 298.)
Therefore, Daenerys was born in Year 284 and we can be sure her birthday falls after Rickons. Because of Martin's comment about Jon and Daenerys being born "eight or nine months" apart, and because we have established Jon and Daenerys are born in different years, we can also be sure that Daenerys's name day falls before Jon's in the year.

Ok, this is a far as I've got so far in sorting out name days and ages. I'm continuing to work to see if I can find clues that will help nail down others. Any corrections or additions would be much appreciated. Thanks for your patience in reading this stuff and thanks in advance for any additions.

Edited by SFDanny, 05 April 2010 - 01:00 PM.


#8 Errant Bard

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Posted 02 October 2008 - 01:09 AM

About Arya:

I doubt that what she says is always the truth. She does think that she killed the King's Landing stableboy when she was 8, however, that does not coincide with her being 10 when in Harrenhal. The best I can do then is to assume that her birthday was during the Stark's fall in KL (happy birthday, here is you father's head), and that she lied to make herself seem older when Roose asked. Her boast about being "almost 11" when sailing to Braavos would then be merely that, a boast, since she wouldn't be that old then.

About Bran's birthday, he turns 8 after waking up, but before other events in KL, and this leaves a very very short time span where it can happen, notice that he still turns 9 before the fall of Winterfell in my timeline.

Edit scratch that about Arya, it's when she talks to Ned Dayne that she is lying.

Edited by Errant Bard, 02 October 2008 - 01:28 AM.


#9 SFDanny

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Posted 02 October 2008 - 02:04 AM

Thanks for reading this stuff, EB. I'm a little obsessed with trying to sort it all out, so anyone who will put up with my obsession is much appreciated. ;)

#10 Errant Bard

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Posted 02 October 2008 - 02:36 AM

Doesn't help that GRRM isn't the most precise author around, too. Not at Erikson's level of mess, but when you get to AFFC, it all sort of becomes rather vague when anything happens. ;)

#11 SFDanny

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Posted 02 October 2008 - 10:33 AM

No, Martin doesn't help very much at all. Unless "helping" is building a huge freakin' maze of seemingly disconnected information for his fans to try to sort through. Now, if he actually comes out with a timeline in this upcoming book that all the great castle artwork is being done for, then that would qualify as helping. :read: :huh: :dunno:

One thing on Bran's age, why do you think he turns age eight after he wakes from his coma? My guess, and it is only a guess, was his name day takes place during the time he is in his coma, but if you have a reference that puts it after I'd love to see it.

Not that I have any argument with the dates you choose for either Robb or Bran's name days - you've done much more work than I in setting them among other events - but I can't get over the relative timeline with Jon's name day. I think Jon's name day celebration has to be after Robb's, and therefore after Bran's, or Catelyn's references to Robb's conception and her belief of when Jon is conceived make no sense.

Sorry, should I put this in stuff in your thread? If you want to discuss it there, just let me know.

#12 Errant Bard

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Posted 02 October 2008 - 10:41 AM

No, Martin doesn't help very much at all. Unless "helping" is building a huge freakin' maze of seemingly disconnected information for his fans to try to sort through. Now, if he actually comes out with a timeline in this upcoming book that all the great castle artwork is being done for, then that would qualify as helping. :read: :huh: :dunno:

One thing on Bran's age, why do you think he turns age eight after he wakes from his coma? My guess, and it is only a guess, was his name day takes place during the time he is in his coma, but if you have a reference that puts it after I'd love to see it.

I have to check, but as I recall, he says that his name day comes and goes, and that somehow implied that it occured when he was awake, though sulking because of his legs.

I think Jon's name day celebration has to be after Robb's, and therefore after Bran's, or Catelyn's references to Robb's conception and her belief of when Jon is conceived make no sense.

You are right, of course it bothers me too, it's just that I did find a way to make Jon's birthday happen later without distorting everything, so I kinda put that off. It's been some months since I did the AGOT timeline, but as I recall, it was something like a problem with news from bran waking up or Ned getting framed.

Ah, I remember now, Jon waits for Benjen to come back, he hopes he'll be back for his fifteenth name day but he never does, and I think it happens before Ned getting killed though not sure about Bran waking up.


Edit: Ok, here it is:

Bran has indeed his birthday "coming and going" after he wakes up (after Bran 3) but before the end of Bran 4. Bran is 8 when Tyrion arrives in Winterfell.

Relatively to this, Jon, in Jon 3, says that his nameday was a fortnight or so before. Tyrion is then still at the Wall, and Jon in this chapter receives news that Bran woke up.

So, that puts Jon's birthday within a small timeframe... after he reaches the Wall, obviously, but before Tyrion leaves and before or not much after Bran wakes up, and that makes Bran's Birthday happen after or at the same time as his, depending on bird speeds and time it took to send one.

Of course, that does impact Robb since I calculated the taking of the crag from:
COK Bran 4, which HAS to happen after Bran's 9th birthday,
then Bran 5 happens after Rodrick goes to Hornwood and captures Ramsay, comes back then goes to Torrhen's Square rescue,
then Bran 6 where Theon takes Winterfell,
then Theon 4, where Bran and Rickon escape and he flays the miller's boys
then Catelyn 7, where she has a bird about Bran and Rickon's "death" as well as news of Robb taking the Crag. And we know Robb just turned 16 by then.

All in all, since Jon's birthday is then put before Bran's and Robb's has to happen after (unless he really was 16 for months), then Jon has to be older than Robb. That would lend a whole other dimension to Cat resenting Jon, of course, but I'm willing to chalk that up to author inconsistency.

Edited by Errant Bard, 02 October 2008 - 11:25 AM.


#13 Errant Bard

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Posted 02 October 2008 - 11:46 AM

So, summing that up, my take is:

Sam: July 23 283 (kicked out of Horn hill on his 15th birthday, judging 3 months to reach the wall, could be faster)
Jon: August 24 283
Robb: October 16 283 (possibility between 25 may and 20 october, may 25 is the last time Cat sees him before his birthday, but that would make him 16 and 5 month when sleeping with Jeyne)
Dany: May 25 284 (9 motnhs before Jon, assuming Jon's official birthday is what GRRM was talking about)
Sansa: December 12 286 (near Blackwater and purple wedding)
Arya: April 1st 289 (15 march-10 may or so)
Bran: September 9 290
Rickon: Let's say November 10 295 (between october 1st (Theon taking WF) and january 2 (News of Ned death)) it's somewhere in these three months anyway.

Edited by Errant Bard, 02 October 2008 - 12:11 PM.


#14 Ouroboros

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Posted 02 October 2008 - 11:58 AM

So how old are they as of A Feast for Crows?

#15 Errant Bard

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Posted 02 October 2008 - 12:07 PM

Depends, which chapter in AFFC? You can look at my global timeline and place their birthday (I didn't do it yet)

My guess is for the last chapter of AFFC (cat of the canals) to happen around march 301, so, by then:
Sam is 17
Jon is 17
Robb is dead
Dany is 16
Sansa is 14
Arya is 11 (birthday in less than a month, though)
Bran is 10
Rickon is 5

But of course, by then, it's been 4 months since we last saw Sam, 11 months since we last saw Sansa, 11 months since we last saw Jon, 14 months since we saw Dany, 14 months since we saw Bran and 17 months since we last saw Rickon

Edited by Errant Bard, 02 October 2008 - 12:15 PM.


#16 SFDanny

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Posted 02 October 2008 - 02:55 PM

E.B., this is the reference I have for Bran's eighth name day:

His eyes stung. He wanted to be down there, laughing and running. Angry at the thought, Bran knuckled away the tears before they could fall. His eighth day had come and gone. He was almost a man grown now, too old to cry. (AGoT 200 US Hardback)

emphasis added

I don't read that as saying it has come and gone after he woke from his coma, but rather just that it has come and gone since the last time his age was remarked upon. It could well have passed when he was in a coma. A rather lengthy period of time. I think you can push the date of his name day up much closer to the time of his fall.

It's the same with Robb. The first we read he is fifteen is when he and Bran go riding in the woods following Tyrion's visit - when they encounter Osha and her party (AGoT 334.) But this doesn't mean he is just recently, as in a matter of days, turned fifteen. He could have turned fifteen any time between this reference and when we last know him to be fourteen - on the day of Bran's attempted assassination (AGoT 109.)

Now, I know Jon has turned fifteen two weeks before the night the news of Bran's awakening reaches Castle Black, but this only means that Robb's name day must fall between that time and the attempted assassination, and Bran's must fall between that date and his fall. The first is a period, in your timeline, of about two months - give or take a few days depending on the time a raven takes to fly from Winterfell to Castle Black, and the second is period of almost two weeks longer. What I don't get is why they have to fall late in that period, especially after Bran wakes? I'm sure I am missing something, so could you tell me where I'm wrong?

Ouroboros, the characters I listed in the first post of this thread would be the following in Year 300 - in which A Feast of Crows almost exclusively takes place:

Robb was 16 when he died at the Red Wedding which takes place before Year 300
Jon is 16 turning 17 in this year
Margaery is 16 turning 17 as well
Daenerys is 15 turning 16
Joffrey is already dead at age 13 on the first day of the new year
Sansa is 13 turning 14 in late 300
Arya is 10 turning 11 - and if AFfC goes into Year 301 could well be turning 12 by her last chapter
Myrcella is 9 turning 10
Bran is also 9 turning 10
Tommen is 8 turning 9
and Rickon is 4 turning 5.

Because AFfC spans such a long period of time it is impossible to answer your question more precisely than this. Depending where in AFfC you are asking about the answer will change.

#17 Errant Bard

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Posted 03 October 2008 - 12:47 AM

It's the same with Robb. The first we read he is fifteen is when he and Bran go riding in the woods following Tyrion's visit - when they encounter Osha and her party (AGoT 334.) But this doesn't mean he is just recently, as in a matter of days, turned fifteen. He could have turned fifteen any time between this reference and when we last know him to be fourteen - on the day of Bran's attempted assassination (AGoT 109.)

I based Robb's age on what we hear from Cat during her questionning of Jaime (ACOK Catelyn 7), not on speculation about his fifteenth nameday, actually:

"Your boy must be feeling lonely."
"Robb was sixteen a few days past . . . a man grown, and a king. He's won every battle he's fought. The last word we had from him, he had taken the Crag from the Westerlings."


A few days past is only a few days past.


As for Bran, Yes I could have put his birthday earlier, but it made more sense to me for the birthday to have happened relatively close to the moment he reminisced about it, and as it fit with the time he left Winterfell and his ninth birthday had also passed, I left it like that. I suppose I could make it happen as early as the first day of his coma, but that does not impact anything in the timeline.

#18 SFDanny

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Posted 03 October 2008 - 01:53 AM

I based Robb's age on what we hear from Cat during her questionning of Jaime (ACOK Catelyn 7), not on speculation about his fifteenth nameday, actually:

"Your boy must be feeling lonely."
"Robb was sixteen a few days past . . . a man grown, and a king. He's won every battle he's fought. The last word we had from him, he had taken the Crag from the Westerlings."


A few days past is only a few days past.


As for Bran, Yes I could have put his birthday earlier, but it made more sense to me for the birthday to have happened relatively close to the moment he reminisced about it, and as it fit with the time he left Winterfell and his ninth birthday had also passed, I left it like that. I suppose I could make it happen as early as the first day of his coma, but that does not impact anything in the timeline.


I agree with you about Catelyn's remarks. That's partly why I came to the conclusion that Robb's name day falls after Bran's. What having them earlier in year allows is for Jon's name day to fall after his two brothers with room to spare. That fits with Catelyn's thinking about when Jon is conceived relative to Robb. You're obviously right that Jon's name day has to occur two weeks before the news of Bran's awakening arrives in Castle Black. To me it's the only way these facts can be sorted out to make any sense. Anyway, for what it is worth, that's my thinking on the matter.

#19 Errant Bard

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Posted 03 October 2008 - 02:05 AM

I agree with you about Catelyn's remarks. That's partly why I came to the conclusion that Robb's name day falls after Bran's. What having them earlier in year allows is for Jon's name day to fall after his two brothers with room to spare. That fits with Catelyn's thinking about when Jon is conceived relative to Robb. You're obviously right that Jon's name day has to occur two weeks before the news of Bran's awakening arrives in Castle Black. To me it's the only way these facts can be sorted out to make any sense. Anyway, for what it is worth, that's my thinking on the matter.

But it cannot happen like that, since when the whole Red Wedding affair and Catelyn freeing Jaime happen does not depend on birthday dates but on travel times, on Tyrion marrying Sansa, on Jaime arriving in KL and subsequently on the Purple wedding. It is not possible to make Catelyn free Jaime two months before, and I don't think it is possible to make Jon have his birthday later, for that matters, since this one depends on Bran waking up and so ultimately on events in KL, Tyrion getting seized by Catelyn, the red fork & everything.

#20 SFDanny

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Posted 03 October 2008 - 02:58 AM

But it cannot happen like that, since when the whole Red Wedding affair and Catelyn freeing Jaime happen does not depend on birthday dates but on travel times, on Tyrion marrying Sansa, on Jaime arriving in KL and subsequently on the Purple wedding. It is not possible to make Catelyn free Jaime two months before, and I don't think it is possible to make Jon have his birthday later, for that matters, since this one depends on Bran waking up and so ultimately on events in KL, Tyrion getting seized by Catelyn, the red fork & everything.


Ahhh ... I see. You're not worried so much about what it does in 298, but rather what it does in 299 if Bran and Robb's name days are moved up. For what it's worth, I'm not suggesting you move Jon's name day or the time Bran wakes up (at least not now after I've looked at it closer.) I am suggesting to move earlier in the year the dates of Bran's and Robb's name days. That shouldn't mess with the 298 events you enumerate, but I can see where it would have a big impact on the timing of the 299 events - especially moving Robb's name day and the impact it would have on the timing of the Red Wedding. I'll have to look again at your 299 timeline and see if I can make any helpful contributions. I do remember that you have the time from Sansa wedding to the Red Wedding at 30 days, where I have it at 31 days minimum. I think the description of Robb's march to The Twins likely means a longer trip, but I haven't tried to make it fit in with your other calculations for that year. You may well have the right of it, but my original suggestion is the only way I see to deal with the implications of Catelyn's remarks about the timeline for Robb and Jon's conception. If I can think of anything, I'll post it in your thread.

Edited by SFDanny, 03 October 2008 - 11:37 AM.