So far, including this one, three analyses have been completed: The theory that the Hound is still alive as the gravedigger on the Quite Isle and the theory King Balon Greyjoy was murdered by a faceless man, hired by his brother Euron.
(Before I begin, a special shoutout to 'ghostlovesinger' from 'ToweroftheHand.com' whose essay added tons of information to this analysis)
All right , for those of you still reading, here is all the information I have gathered regarding ALLERAS and the theory that he is probably the daughter of Oberyn Martell in disguise:
Alleras, known as The Sphinx, is a novice studying at the Citadel in Oldtown. Alleras is described as having a noble Dornishman for a father and a Summer Islander for a mother. In ‘A Feast for Crows’ we learn that Alleras has been at the Citadel for a year and has forged three links in his Maester's chain. When Samwell Tarly arrives in Oldtown, Alleras seeks him out as soon as he enters the Citadel and instructs him to go to Marwyn. Alleras is believed to be an alias assumed by Sarella Sand, one of Oberyn Martell's bastard daughters known as ‘the Sand Snakes’. There are many indications that this is correct. On their own they would not stand, but seen as a whole, the claim becomes quite plausible.
In ‘A Feast for Crows’, a whole slew of clues were brought to us in the form of a passage between Prince Doran Martell and his captain of guards, Areo Hotah. This exchange happened immediately after Martell ordered Hotah to take the Sand Snakes into custody:
"Unless she returns to Dorne, there's naught I can do about Sarella save pray that she shows more sense than her sisters. Leave her to her . . . game.”
2) The second clue is that Sarella is presently not in Dorne and far enough away that Doran is forced to leave her alone.
3) We also learn that Sarella is 19 years old, meaning she is about the right age to pass for an acolyte of the Citadel
4) The most intriguing clue this passage provides is that she is engaged in some sort of "game". Since women are not permitted to become maesters, if Sarella is indeed Alleras, her "game" could very well be that she is pretending to be a man and an acolyte of the Citadel.
5) Another clue can be found in Alleras’s physical appearance. In the FFC prologue Alleras’s defining physical features are described in detail as:
6) The next clue is also derived from Alleras’s physical resemblance to Oberyn. The eyes in particular draw the reader's attention, due to the manner in which they are described. Oberyn's eyes are "black and shiny as pools of coal oil" and Alleras has "eyes of onyx." This becomes more interesting when referenced with something that Areo Hotah thinks to himself upon viewing one of the other Sand Snakes, Tyene, in ‘A Feast for Crows’
7) Another indication that Sarella might be the acolyte in Oldtown can be found by learning about Sarella’s personality. She loves knowledge and Oldtown. This is strongly indicated in the following two passages made respectively by Nymeria Sand and Arianne Martell in AFFC:
8) A second Arianne quote strengthens the previously discussed aspect of Sarella's personality:
9) Leo Tyrell makes a point of Alleras possessing more silver than the other acolytes and notes that, despite his mixed parentage, Alleras speaks in a "soft Dornish drawl". This indicates that he was raised in Dorne (speech patterns are a reflection of childhood environment rather than birth).
10) A final piece of information that links Sarella and Alleras concerns the Summer Isles part of their ancestry. We're told that Sarella's mother is a trader captain of the ship Feathered Kiss from the Summer Isles. In the prologue of AFFC, Alleras is wielding a bow (along with arrows) of goldenheart, a wood native to the Summer Isles and used by its inhabitants to make their famous bows. It's not often seen in Westeros. (Credit to Sevumar for providing this clue)
Conclusion: Perhaps giving a name to one character that happens to be the exact backwards reading of the name of another could be construed as coincidence, but when the characters in question appear to have so much in common, and when there is so much evidence linking the pair of them, it becomes increasingly unlikely that the hints and clues given throughout ‘A Feast For Crows’ are there for some other purpose. If we are to assume that Sarella was sent to the citadel in order to complete a specific mission or accomplish a specific goal, it would be hardly inconceivable that such a girl, raised by the Red Viper and so curious about history and culture, would be chosen to infiltrate the Citadel. So with this, we can conclude that the theory claiming Alleras ‘the Sphinx’ is actually Oberyn Martells daughter, the sandsnake Sarella, in disguise is one that can be believed.
Of course, knowing this only begs more questions. Why is Sarella in Oldtown studying to become a maester? Why did she help out Samwell upon his arrival in the Citadel? How come she seems to be so interested in 'the three-headed dragon'? Etc ...
Well, the point of this was not to answer those questions, but simply to help clear up some things for the people who have not yet delved themselves into this theory. Feel free to contribute your information and opinion to this analysis, as I am sure that there is much to be added.
Edited by Cosmic Maintenance Man, 22 January 2012 - 03:15 AM.