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Why do people think that Jon+Dany is incest?


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103 replies to this topic

#1 Vóden

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Posted 20 September 2013 - 05:43 AM

As far as I can tell, in Westeros incest only applies to siblings, not cousins or aunts/uncles. Different societies have different standards, cousin marriage is considered a norm in many places around the world today and that's not going to change any time soon.

Is a Jon/Dany relationship going to be considered incest in Westeros? Probably not, in most of our world yes, but not by the Westerosi. So why do people keep applying 21st century standards to Westeros? Lysa Tully was a child when she married Jon Arryn but the marriage happened anyway.

#2 The Doctor's Consort

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Posted 20 September 2013 - 05:51 AM

Welcome /cheers.gif' class='bbc_emoticon' alt=':cheers:' />

Because it is incest at the eyes of the Old Gods and they forbid it.

Edited by Jon's Queen Consort, 20 September 2013 - 05:51 AM.


#3 Lord Bronn of Sunspear

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Posted 20 September 2013 - 05:54 AM

People marry cousins often. (tywin and joanna)
Assuming R+L=J, then they are targs, who wed brother to sister all the time.
So i dont see a nephew/aunt union kicking up any dust.

#4 Dornish Whine

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Posted 20 September 2013 - 05:55 AM

Firstly, Welcome to the forums.

Dany is Jon's aunt, so by 'modern' standards this is clearly incest. As readers, we often subconsciously apply our own set of morals and social biases to any material we read. This is just the way we go through life, comparing things to our own experiences and values almost instantly. It is only with some effort that we begin to consider other cultural standards and evaluate them with 'open minds'. We could step back and say 'In Westeros it wouldn't be considered weird', but when we re-enter our own world we'll think 'Ew, Aunt/Nephew marriage is wrong'.

#5 SeanF

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Posted 20 September 2013 - 06:02 AM

Incest is generally regarded with abhorrence, both by followers of the Seven, and by followers of the Old Gods. I'm pretty sure that in-universe, marriage between Aunt/Nephew, Uncle/Niece would be considered incestuous. Targaryens, however, get a dispensation, so a marriage between Jon and Dany would be tolerated, and presumably, be solemnised in the Great Sept. Interestingly, quite a few of the noble characters we encounter in the series either practise incest, or fantasise about doing so.

#6 Ghost's Shadow

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Posted 20 September 2013 - 06:04 AM

Do we have examples of nephew/aunt marriages by non-Targs in Westeros, and if they were okay in the eyes of the Seven and the other people?

First cousin marriages are somewhat okay, but your sibling's child?

#7 SeanF

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Posted 20 September 2013 - 06:06 AM

In real-life, the Hapsburgs and Wittlesbachs practised Uncle/Niece incest, as well as repeated marriage between first cousins.

#8 Twist

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Posted 20 September 2013 - 06:08 AM

In rl a relationship between cousins is not incest, but aunt and nephew would be. I'm not aware of any aunt and nephew pairing in westeros, but this may be why Joanna and Tywin is fine, but others not. So dany+Jon could be considered incest in westeros.

#9 SeanF

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Posted 20 September 2013 - 06:09 AM

Do we have examples of nephew/aunt marriages by non-Targs in Westeros, and if they were okay in the eyes of the Seven and the other people?

First cousin marriages are somewhat okay, but your sibling's child?

One of my favourite absurd theories is that Dany is in fact Rhaegar's daughter by Rhaella. Which would make Jon her half-brother.

#10 C0bR

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Posted 20 September 2013 - 06:13 AM

Ask Jon if he thinks it would an incest in the eyes of gods and men.

Edited by C0bR, 20 September 2013 - 06:13 AM.


#11 Gnivil

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Posted 20 September 2013 - 06:15 AM

In the real world, first cousin marriage is considered a bit weird, but not illegal (in most countries) and people tend not to think too badly of it, aunt/uncle and nephew/niece marriages however is illegal in most countries, and considered disgusting by almost all people. Sibling and parent/child marriage is unspeakable.

In Westeros I tend to think that everything is considered slightly less abhorent, eg cousin marriage is completely fine and the norm in most places, aunt/uncle and nephew/niece marriage is considered a bit weird, but not illegal, this is shown by people such as Victarion and the Karstark guy (forgot his name) considering marrying their nieces, some people think it's weird, yeah, but they still consider it a valid option. Finally, sibling and parent/child marriages is considered disgusting and illegal in most places.

#12 Dicer

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Posted 20 September 2013 - 06:19 AM

Dany is Jon's aunt, so by 'modern' standards this is clearly incest. As readers, we often subconsciously apply our own set of morals and social biases to any material we read. This is just the way we go through life, comparing things to our own experiences and values almost instantly. It is only with some effort that we begin to consider other cultural standards and evaluate them with 'open minds'. We could step back and say 'In Westeros it wouldn't be considered weird', but when we re-enter our own world we'll think 'Ew, Aunt/Nephew marriage is wrong'.


It certainly does not bother me. Where I come from uncles marry their nieces and cousins marry each other all the time. Especially in the villages. It's neither illegal nor frowned upon.

The tradition is less frequent these days because of people being more aware of familial diseases being passed through genes. It's not a social issue, it's a medical and scientific issue. People are realizing that inbreeding is not healthy.

As for Westeros, the issue is not going to be a problem for the Targs (Dany, Aegon). I am not sure about Jon.

Edited by Dicer, 20 September 2013 - 06:21 AM.


#13 SeanF

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Posted 20 September 2013 - 06:23 AM

It certainly does not bother me. Where I come from uncles marry their nieces and cousins marry each other all the time. Especially in the villages. It's neither illegal nor frowned upon.

That sounds like Norfolk, in England.

#14 Gnivil

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Posted 20 September 2013 - 06:29 AM

That sounds like Norfolk, in England.

I laughed a little too much at this.

#15 SeanF

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Posted 20 September 2013 - 06:31 AM

I laughed a little too much at this.

"Normal for Norfolk."

#16 KingofSothoryos

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Posted 20 September 2013 - 06:34 AM

In Westeros I tend to think that everything is considered slightly less abhorent, eg cousin marriage is completely fine and the norm in most places, aunt/uncle and nephew/niece marriage is considered a bit weird, but not illegal, this is shown by people such as Victarion and the Karstark guy (forgot his name) considering marrying their nieces, some people think it's weird, yeah, but they still consider it a valid option. Finally, sibling and parent/child marriages is considered disgusting and illegal in most places.


Arnolf Karstark was trying to marry his son to Alys, not himself, so it was cousin to cousin, not uncle/niece marriage.

I think all bets are off on incest when we talk about Targs.

#17 Dicer

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Posted 20 September 2013 - 06:34 AM

That sounds like Norfolk, in England.


South India.

#18 The Weirwoods Eyes

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Posted 20 September 2013 - 06:40 AM

In real life I am utterly repulsed by the idea of even cousins marrying. I mean really, that is just gross. Certainly in the UK marrying ones aunt or uncle is illegal. But as has been pointed out I don't think in Westeros it is seen in the same light at all, Victarion misunderstands Asha and thinks hmph, well I never saw you like that but hell why not you are young and fit and atractive. Also Alys runs to Jon to avoid her Uncle forcing a marriage and Jon protects her from the forced marriage but does not think ewwwwww what is he thinking she is his niece.
Also Wyman Manderley wanted Bran to tell Lady Hornwood to marry him in order to gain her lands and they were cousins as of course were Joanna & Tywin.
in the books I am not grossed out by even Jamie & Cersei but you bet your life irl that would turn my stomach.
I know some one IRL who had an affair with his half sister after being raised apart, which is an actual phenomenon and it makes me feel sick. I also know of a couple in my town who are Uncle & Niece and while they are not legally allowed to wed no one can force them apart. This is another thing that makes me queasy.
In conclusion while IRL we may find the prospect of an Aunt Nephew relationship abhorrent I don't think in westeros there will be much outrage at all.

#19 The Weirwoods Eyes

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Posted 20 September 2013 - 06:41 AM

Arnolf Karstark was trying to marry his son to Alys, not himself, so it was cousin to cousin, not uncle/niece marriage.

I think all bets are off on incest when we talk about Targs.


Ah! appologies then. I just went with the assumption other posters were correct on that.

#20 Dornish Whine

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Posted 20 September 2013 - 06:42 AM

It certainly does not bother me. Where I come from uncles marry their nieces and cousins marry each other all the time. Especially in the villages. It's neither illegal nor frowned upon.


South India.


Well, I certainly didn't mean any offense. I hope you didn't take any. In my culture (North American), it would be considered strange/taboo. As I said in my original post - it takes some effort to step back and consider other cultural conventions with an open mind.