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Is Mance Rayder one of Craster's Sons?


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#1 FranklynFowler

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Posted 20 October 2013 - 02:35 PM

In the books we find out via jeor mormont that Craster sacrificed his sons to the gods and this has strongly been implied through the tv series that the Others take the children. Also after the skirmish at Craster's Keep one of his wives said the White Shadows will be here for Craster's son. Now it only just occurred to me that mance rayder was found as a child abandoned in the haunted forest by the Watch is there a chance he is one of these sons and are the others specifically after him like they were for Sam and Gilly and her son in ASOS.



#2 James Arryn

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Posted 20 October 2013 - 02:45 PM

Better that than being Just Another Secret Targ, who seem to kind of clutter of the place.

#3 Consigliere

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Posted 20 October 2013 - 02:51 PM

I don't think he is. Could you provide the quote saying he was found abandoned in the haunted forest? IIRC, the text says he was taken as a child when some raiders were put to the sword.



#4 Beorn Snow

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Posted 20 October 2013 - 02:57 PM

I´d find it amusing if he, the savior of the wildlings, was somehow the cause of their woes. But I don´t think he´s Craster´s son.



#5 Mikkel

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Posted 20 October 2013 - 02:59 PM

I don't think he is. Could you provide the quote saying he was found abandoned in the haunted forest? IIRC, the text says he was taken as a child when some raiders were put to the sword.

 

Agreed. I see no reason to think he's Craster's son.



#6 James Arryn

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Posted 20 October 2013 - 03:00 PM

Whenever someone says they find something 'amusing', I picture their eyebrow cocking rakishly above their monocle, all set over the martini glass held with pinke-out élan.

#7 FranklynFowler

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Posted 20 October 2013 - 03:07 PM

Yep you're right titan's bastard just did a re-read and he was the child of some raiders they put to the sword. It's a shame lol i thought i'd actually uncovered something nobody else had.



#8 Mikkel

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Posted 20 October 2013 - 03:12 PM

Yep you're right titan's bastard just did a re-read and he was the child of some raiders they put to the sword. It's a shame lol i thought i'd actually uncovered something nobody else had.

 

I admire your optimism, but odds are given the minutely detailed analysis these boards have given just about every single word in those books, almost everything with even the remotest basis in the text has been found by now (as well as a hundred times as many things that aren't there).

 

Doesn't mean we should stop looking of course :D



#9 Blutraven

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Posted 20 October 2013 - 03:15 PM

Everyone knows he's Raegar in disguise.



#10 Thendel

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Posted 21 October 2013 - 09:49 AM

I'm not sure we should discount this theory: To the best of my knowledge, Mance's parents weren't identified among the wildlings put to the sword. This might mean nothing, but it does open up the possibility of the wildlings having found baby Mance after he'd been put out by Craster.

 

And then there's this thought by Sam:

 

"The boy was Mance Rayder's son and Craster's grandson, after all."

 

The way Sam phrases this implies that he is quite sure of this, and not just parrotting some wild rumor. At any rate, Sam does not reflect on this while he's at the Wall, not even when Jon mentions Mance and Craster in the same sentence, meaning Sam probably didn't hear the rumor until after he left for Oldtown. It is thus likely that Gilly told him this, and she likely heard it from Val, having spent some time in her company at the Wall.

 

This naturally opens up the question of either Dalla or Mance being kin of Craster's. Personally, I doubt that it's Dalla, given that she seems much more knowledgeable about the world than any daughter of Craster's has a right to be. In fact, Dalla and Val are so well versed in ancient mythology that they likely hold some special position among the free folk.

 

That leaves Mance. We don't know exactly when he was taken to the Shadow Tower, but it's not unreasonable to speculate that he might have been old enough to have been told by the raiders that Craster was his father. At any rate, it'd be odd for a team of raiders to have been running with too small a boy, so I summarily infer that he spent some years among his people from infancy to boyhood.

 

All of this is pure speculation, of course, but that quote by Sam has intriguing implications, to say the least.



#11 Consigliere

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Posted 21 October 2013 - 10:40 AM

<snip>

 

That is certainly a strange thing for Sam to say. Maybe I dismissed this theory prematurely. My only question would be, how could Sam possibly know this?

 

The inner skeptic in me offers another interpretation of this quote:

 

Sam may be referring to the two identities of the baby.

 

1. His true identity - being the son of Mance.

2. His feigned identity - Sam is going to claim that the child is his and as a result the child is not going to grow up as a son of Craster. The child will instead grow up being looked at as a grandson of Craster, because his mother is Craster's daughter.



#12 Mikkel

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Posted 21 October 2013 - 10:42 AM

Sam may be referring to the two identities of the baby.
 
1. His true identity - being the son of Mance.
2. His feigned identity - Sam is going to claim that the child is his and as a result the child is not going to grow up as a son of Craster. The child will instead grow up being looked at as a grandson of Craster, because his mother is Craster's daughter.


I agree this is most likely what Sam meant in this instance - I fail to see how Sam would know about Mance's supposed parentage.

#13 -Ghost-

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Posted 21 October 2013 - 10:56 AM

 

The inner skeptic in me offers another interpretation of this quote:
 
Sam may be referring to the two identities of the baby.
 
1. His true identity - being the son of Mance.
2. His feigned identity - Sam is going to claim that the child is his and as a result the child is not going to grow up as a son of Craster. The child will instead grow up being looked at as a grandson of Craster, because his mother is Craster's daughter.


I agree with this.

#14 DavosSeaworthy

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Posted 21 October 2013 - 10:59 AM

Better that than being Just Another Secret Targ, who seem to kind of clutter of the place.

But Craster is a secret Targ, therefore if Craster is Mance's father then Mance is a secret Targ!  Everyone is a secret Targ you know. :P



#15 bo88gdan

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Posted 21 October 2013 - 11:27 AM

No. 



#16 bemused

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Posted 21 October 2013 - 11:58 AM

I don't think we've been given enough to form a really strong guess, but I kind of like son of Qorgoyle myself. The Qorgoyle arms are 3 black scorpions on red. Mance's cloak is mended with red on black , and when Mance is showing Jon his old cloak, he points out 3 places where it's mended ( here, here and here ).

 

I suppose the 3 and red on black is what has led some people to speculate Mance is a secret Targaryen ? ..but I think maybe the colour reversal is the kind of sneaky twist GRRM would pull ;)

 

Of course, there's the Blackfyre option , but then there's Mance's fondness for "The Dornishman's Wife"..

 

If there's a symbolic hint in any of this at all , that is.


Edited by bemused, 21 October 2013 - 12:07 PM.


#17 Mikkel

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Posted 21 October 2013 - 12:14 PM

Mance's story about his cloak is full of symbolism, but it would cheapen it considerably if it was a hint of him belonging to any particular House IMO.



#18 Blueberry Stark

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Posted 21 October 2013 - 02:20 PM

I'm not sure we should discount this theory: To the best of my knowledge, Mance's parents weren't identified among the wildlings put to the sword. This might mean nothing, but it does open up the possibility of the wildlings having found baby Mance after he'd been put out by Craster.

 

And then there's this thought by Sam:

 

"The boy was Mance Rayder's son and Craster's grandson, after all."

 

The way Sam phrases this implies that he is quite sure of this, and not just parrotting some wild rumor. At any rate, Sam does not reflect on this while he's at the Wall, not even when Jon mentions Mance and Craster in the same sentence, meaning Sam probably didn't hear the rumor until after he left for Oldtown. It is thus likely that Gilly told him this, and she likely heard it from Val, having spent some time in her company at the Wall.

 

This naturally opens up the question of either Dalla or Mance being kin of Craster's. Personally, I doubt that it's Dalla, given that she seems much more knowledgeable about the world than any daughter of Craster's has a right to be. In fact, Dalla and Val are so well versed in ancient mythology that they likely hold some special position among the free folk.

 

That leaves Mance. We don't know exactly when he was taken to the Shadow Tower, but it's not unreasonable to speculate that he might have been old enough to have been told by the raiders that Craster was his father. At any rate, it'd be odd for a team of raiders to have been running with too small a boy, so I summarily infer that he spent some years among his people from infancy to boyhood.

 

All of this is pure speculation, of course, but that quote by Sam has intriguing implications, to say the least.

At some point, somewhere, this strange statement by Sam was brought up, and many people seemed to conclude that Sam was referring to Mance's son as Craster's grandson because Gilly, Craster's daughter, is nursing the baby. Therefore, she is acting as an adoptive mother to the baby. However, this explanation is bit thin to me, even though it could work, because of the way that Sam phrases it. "The boy was Mance Rayder's son and Craster's grandson, after all" seems to entail a blood relation to me. Hopefully, we'll learn more in TWoW.



#19 fassreiter

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Posted 21 October 2013 - 04:41 PM

 

That is certainly a strange thing for Sam to say. Maybe I dismissed this theory prematurely. My only question would be, how could Sam possibly know this?

 

The inner skeptic in me offers another interpretation of this quote:

 

Sam may be referring to the two identities of the baby.

 

1. His true identity - being the son of Mance.

2. His feigned identity - Sam is going to claim that the child is his and as a result the child is not going to grow up as a son of Craster. The child will instead grow up being looked at as a grandson of Craster, because his mother is Craster's daughter.

 

So here is the quote, note the remark that follows the sentence that was quoted here before:

 

 

"Dalla brought him forth during battle, as the swords sang all around her. That should be his name. Aemon Battleborn. Aemon Steelsong."
A name even my lord father might like. A warrior's name. The boy was Mance Rayder's son and Craster's grandson, after all. He had none of Sam's craven blood.

 

So talking about a feigned identity does not fit the thought about the "craven blood" because according to the feigned identity (with Sam as the boy's father), he would be associated with "Sam's craven blood".

 

I don't think the idea that Mance is Craster's son is that absurd. If we take into account that the passage quoted above (which is from Feast) was not simply a mistake by GRRM (and it is very possible it is just that), there is someone Sam might have learned the truth from: Maester Aemon could have known and he could have told Sam during their journey. This would explain why Mance did not kill Craster even if he knew he was working against him. Also there are different stories about Mance's childhood (for example, Selyse claims he is the child of a wildling and a black brother, which is, interestingly the story of Craster - Qhorin claims he was taken in by the watch when the watch had killed his parents as raiders), so it is possible Aemon and the Lord Commander made up a story after finding one of Craster's sons alive because the NW might not have been pleased to have one of them around. If they had found the child before he could die or be taken by the Others, this could also be how the NW knows about Craster's dealings with the Others. And, lastly, this could also be the reason why Mance decided to fight the Others, and why he did not heed Craster's advise to "get right with the Gods". Craster might not even know this, by the way.  

 

It's probably not true, but it could be. No need to bring in the secret targs, there is far more crazy crackpot around these days.


Edited by fassreiter, 21 October 2013 - 04:43 PM.


#20 Thendel

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Posted 21 October 2013 - 05:29 PM

I agree this is most likely what Sam meant in this instance - I fail to see how Sam would know about Mance's supposed parentage.

 

Read my post: My idea is that Sam had it from Gilly, who had it from Val, who is Mance's sister-in-law. And at any rate, Craster is "Monster's" father and grandfather, yet Sam calls him by the latter. You'd think he'd go for the closest relation, no?