Darry Man

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  1. From the Prologue of A Game of Thrones, you have six Others murdering the Night’s Watch brother, Ser Waymar Royce: And in his nightmarish vision in ASOS, Jaime's five slain KG brothers & Rhaegar are about to do the same: Given @LmL's hypothesis that the Kingsguard symbolically represent the Others, these passages suggest a motif of six Others/kingsguard attacking a brother. These thoughts kicked off an interesting Twitter thread involving several forum participants. I thought it worthwhile to share our discoveries with forum participants. Special thanks to Emma Smith for her contributions. GRRM explicitly provides the motif of a dozen companions with the Last Hero, which we’ll call, for lack of a better term, “LH math”. We see this 12+1=13 formula repeated throughout the published works. Forum contributor @ravenous reader suggests that this newly uncovered motif could represent the “naughty greenseer”, aka the Night’s King: I’ll call 6 + 1 the NK formula. Because I can. This post is designed to capture every instance of NK math that I can find in the main five books. I’m sure there are more in The World of Ice & Fire and the novellas, but as you can see here, I think we have more than enough evidence of its usage. Search the term “six” or “half a dozen” in the books, and look for a relation between seven “brothers” or with an otherwise in-kind relationship, with six of them in opposition to the seventh. The pattern comes up time and time again. Six and One Below is a list of all I can find so far. Here’s Robert in AGOT: Heh. Big part. Tyrion admonishes Joffrey: Catelyn relates her arduous journey to the Eyrie in AGOT: Bran gets captured by Osha and the wildlings: Guess how long Eddard Stark lay in his fever after being attaked by the Lannisters? Knights? Benjen Stark knows: Two of these men came back as wights. In AGOT, Barristan Selmy is ceremoniously slain in the Red Keep’s throne room, and requires a replacement: Eddard dreams of Jaime receiving his white cloak: Things don’t go well for the first slave liberated by Dany: In ACOK, six gold cloaks confront the black-cloaked NW recruiter, Yoren: More six-plus-one math with the gold cloaks: This is an interesting motif we see a few times — six passageways meeting toward a vertical structure: Bran receives a visitor for the feast of Winterfell in ACOK: Gilly hints at the NK formula: Not sure what these means, but six Freys also were mentioned as participants in the Hand’s Tourney in King’s Landing in AGOT: In ACOK, even the Winterfell guard are not immune from this trend: Jon overhears a conspiracy brewing at the Fist of the First Men: Theon’s fate is sealed by a betrayal of six: In ASOS, three fugitives from Riverrun have a challenge on their hands: Check out Jon’s first meeting with Mance: Guess how many Westerlings travelled with Robb to Riverrun? In ASOS, Sansa gets some help with her new fashion ensemble: Six grey beards and 12 green boys? Arya discovers the fate of her father’s men: Six-plus-one is even ingrained in song: Arya runs into another survivor of the NK formula in ASOS: Harwin relates the Battle of the Bells: Tyrion procures some entertainment for his nephew’s wedding: Here’s a big one from ASOS: He is not resurrected from the seventh.Another interesting one: Death. In AFFC, Jaime is told that Pycelle has this NK math too: What a crotchsniffer.Jaime then notices that there were six prisoners in the Black Cells of the Red Keep: There’s a couple of instances of six dragons being used as payment to someone delivering another somewhere. First, the ferryman who carried Arya and the Hound across the flooded Tumblestone demanded six dragons, though the Hound stiffs him. Then Dick Crabb is promised six dragons too: Lord Tywin heads home: Here’s Dick Crabb again, repeating the math of six dragons with the dragon prince: Arianne sets up six versus one: Guess how many Lords Declarant tried Littlefinger? Cersei brushes off the Iron Bank: There’s something particular to do with men-at-arms: The Elder Brother on the Quiet Isle mentions another possible hint at NK math: Uh oh, Brienne is in trouble at the Inn at the Crossroads: Jon Arryn’s sister does her part for her house: In the Prologue to ADWD, Varamyr Six Skins gets six skins: Tyrion spies a standoff between some trees and a little statue in Pentos: Jon Snow notices the money bequeathed to the NW by their fallen brother: Quentyn Martell gets into the action: Daenerys needs some convincing to reopen the Meereenese fighting pits: Dany’s dragon Rhaegal gets a bit testy: Jon Snow takes some new recruits at the weirwood north of the Wall: There are 18 in the party: Not nine, but six: Then, during the induction ceremony: Wyman Manderly eats his enemies: Theon takes poor fArya on her bedding: Stannis tallies his ironborn assets: Six nasty pieces of military tech face off against the Dragon Queen: Lord Manderly is wounded at Winterfell, but his men aren’t much better off: Abel’s washerwoman Squirrel takes one last climb: Tormund sets the bar pretty high for his fighters: Jon receives word that Hardhome, cursed for six hundred years, is still a shithole: Guess how many ships landed in the Stormlands with fAegon? Stannis and Arya receive some visitors: Ser Barristan potentially has some new knight companions: Later in the same chapter, Selmy conspires: Selmy encounters some kids in Dany’s chambers playing a telling game: More Six There are other conspicuous mentions of the term “six” that I haven’t included, but should be considered. There are many references to “six years” or “six hundred years” or “six feet” or “six yards.” There are also many instances of six wayns or baggage carts making up shipments of goods. And Varamyr Six Skins tries to take his seventh in the ADWD Prologue. Half Dozen of the Others In AGOT, Mya Stone gets some exercise on her mules: Theon has some friends with him: Jon Snow also has some friends: In ACOK, Lord Mormont notes that Maester Aemon could have been king at one point: Same number as Oberyn Martell before he left the Citadel. Robb’s direwolf is a Ghost-faced killer: Craster has his own hellhounds: Fishermen don’t do too well when Stannis is nearby: Qhorin Halfhand likes this math: In ASOS, Brienne’s little boat is attacked by Riverrun archers: Jaime’s restraining chain meets the wrath of Brienne: Lord Rickard Karstark loses his seventh and final battle: Before Dany, the Targaryens tried and failed to restore their glory multiple times, as Stannis recalls: The Magnar of Thenn attacks the NW: Joffrey shows us the full extent of his appreciation of literature and education: Iron weapons are no match for a juggler at Joff’s wedding: Big hot pie coming through! Petyr’s ancestral home has NK math too: Six of mantels try and fail to reach the Wall’s gate before the willings figure it out. Arya threatens a woman, but thinks again: Melissandre has her own cadre of NK folk just before the Night’s Watch chooses its Lord Commander: And right after the choosing: In AFFC, the drowned god’s prophet encounters the motif: Jamie spies a confrontation of six on one under the Red Keep: Even Podrick Paine gets in on the action: Arianne Martell grows weary of her numerous suitors. Perhaps the seventh will be more to her liking: Methinks Prince Doran has another suitor in mind for her. Manly man Victarion scares away some ships: A Strange encounter on the Quiet Isle: The Boltons gain the loyalty of the North, though we cannot be sure of one of them: Bearded men, ahoy! Jaime is a slow learner: Oldtown delivers this motif: And if that weren’t enough, we get more: Once again, in Meereen: Bran has his ravens: On the Rhoyne: Here’s six Thenns surrounding a stair: Dany persists: Jon gets some companions: The Merman and his kin: Theon goes into action with Abel’s six spearwives. Look at who he meets: Then Frenya gets into a fight: Even floors are involved: Clashing at Griffin’s Roost: Tyrion fights his temptation to take on swords: Finally, Kevan Lannister meets his makers: The Others There are likely many more example of this math in the books that I haven’t uncovered. For instance, Aenys II Targaryen had seven children. Did you know that? Only one survives to this day, that being the Mother of Dragons. Again, this is just from the five main published books. What have I missed? What does this mean? Not sure. The Night's King Formula exists in the text, that we can be sure of. But what? One of my hypotheses is that we will see this math play out in the aftermath of Jon Snow's assassination. We only count Wick Whittlestick and Bowen Marsh there, and Jon receives at least four wounds from daggers. I'll put money down that there were six assassins in all, and they will include at least Other Yarwyck, Left Hand Lew and Alf of Runnymudd. But there may also be a reveal of the grand proto-myth narrative, where possibly a brother of the Night's Watch, or someone to do with Azor Ahai, in which a greenseer hero will be assassinated before being brought back to life in some horrific manner. Please share your findings below. I'm looking forward to what you can find.
  2. The hollow-hills hypothesis is pretty solid, and there is a reason for it too. Basically, GRRM is evoking the weirwood motif at most locations of significance in his story, as the pattern occurs time and time again. It's his version of the Cosmic Tree.
  3. Good catch. I saw this one but didn’t include it because it could have appeared as merely part of a bunch of skulls. However, I think you can make an argument for its inclusion.
  4. Thanks for the great comments, @ravenous reader. In my essay on the Cosmic Tree, the nexus connects our being between the heavens (home of the saved souls) and the underworld (home of the damned). The empty plinth absolutely represents the god of death. I know! I noticed more than a few instances of a dozen along with a half-dozen, just like this. It suggests a relationship between the two. I don't think it matters if Jaime misheard it, but the reader is meant to. I now read both descriptors as being interchangeable. I'm not sure exactly how the proto-myth went, but it could be something like an oathbreaking KG/NW brother. No, the vertical structure is the axis mundi, or cosmic tree, best represented by the weirwood, or the plinth, or the spiral stairways to the WF crypt, etc. I never made the connection to the web before now, however. Given the hypothesis that the NK is an ember trapped in the weirwood, having him as a spider-like predator on the web makes perfect sense. The NK trapped in a tree invokes Odin hanging himself on Yggdrasil or Jesus on the cross. He gives up his life to attain cosmic wisdom. More evidence to your theory! He is definitely a sorrowful man. I'm on the NN was a hoary whore bandwagon. She got something in return for her sacrifice. I have to believe that AA was going to fulfill a promise of some sort, but the results were horrifically worse than he had imagined. I am not on board that AA wasn't evil person, nor was he a pure hero. He was a man, fraught with all the weaknesses and harm that come along with all the good. In any case, I'm not sure if NN was meant to invoke "assassination", but I have no better theory why GRRM decided to repeat the Nissa term in her name either. It's not implausible, that's all I'm saying. Will hangs himself on the tree, a la Odin. Does he give the signal to the Others? I accept that he may have called him, but did he signal the actual slaying? I'm not sure.
  5. Yeah, I'm not convinced by some of these. I included some suspicious instances of the term just in case I was missing something in the text. The search engine only covers the paragraphs near the term sought, so perhaps there was mention of a seventh figure, eg, elsewhere in the chapter. It doesn't matter, though, as the pattern is definitely established elsewhere.
  6. I'm here to please! I left out many instances of the term "six", etc too but I wanted to add even the most tangential references to the NK formula, just in case the motif wasn't obvious initially. I think the seventh figure is represents death in some fashion. It always seems to be something that terminates the recurrence of the pattern, or indicates an impending death. Something like that.
  7. Yeah, it's definitely a bit random. Going through these mentions got to reveal a few patterns I hadn't noticed previously, which was the best part. Except the title of the thread, of course. That was sheer genius. I can see this. As I think we discussed on twitter, this 6+1 formula definitely relates to the Trial by Seven concept. It could be that during the Long Night events, there was a trial by seven, where the leader of one side was struck down by the leader of the other side (LH perhaps?), and the LH raised the slain dozen to become his followers. Or maybe it was a different result. Even money is that this 6+1 theme is directly related to the 12+1, either occurring before or after a trial by seven event. The scene with Tyrion and Janos really struck me here with the repetition. Obviously, GRRM is telling us something here. I'm almost completely convinced now that the NN figure is a hoary whore figure, one who had a child. There are far too many of these instances to ignore, especially given GRRM's predilection for puns. There are also too many cases of people stealing (or "steeling") children for that to be a random occurrence. Bears, beards, Barras, etc. Yep, this needs to be done. At some point, I have to put together the hoary whore horses thing too.
  8. Our friend Lucifer Means Lightbringer has a great post on the possible symbolism of Visenya Targaryen in relation to the ice-and-fire-moon hypothesis of ASOIAF. As usual, @LmL uses the context of small bits of information revealed by GRRM to help uncover symbolism of greater significance. In this case, when determining the color of Visenya's dragon, Vhagar, we find that this description from TWOAIF symbolically refers to a white (and possibly icy) dragon: Just a few thoughts on the “hoary old bitch” thing, which I found interesting. "Hoar" just isn’t just a synonym of snow or ice, but to be a bit more precise (and pedantic!), it is the frost that encases solids on a particularly humid, cold day. When Jon sees those trees encased in ice, they are covered in hoarfrost. Hoar is literally the “magic north of the Wall.” Thus it’s an especially apt term. So, whilst reading about the Iron Islands in TWOIAF, it came to me that this might be related to why the Ironborn who took over the riverlands were from House Hoare. Not sure how this jibes with the Hoare’s having “black blood” but it cannot be a coincidence to call these raiders, essentially, “ice men”. And where do Hoares go? The God’s Eye. Given GRRM’s predilection for puns, this got me wondering if he’s playing his usual rhyming games. Does “hoar” = “whore”? After all, assuming GRRM doesn’t have a prostitution fetish, there is an especially large number of references to whores in ASOIAF. Maybe hoar and whore are meant to allude to the ice-covered Others? Lo and behold, in the TWOIAF Driftwood Crowns section, we see this: IOW, a son of the Others blows a horn, and the rest of the Others breach a wall. Or how about applying the hoar=whore=Others hypothesis to the rotten old uncles Umber? The cognomen “Crowfood” Umber certainly implies that he’s a dead man walking, but “Whoresbane” Umber? He’s someone the icy Others might want to avoid. Of course there are far too many whores in this story (literal, not just metaphorical) to think that every whore represents the Others in every circumstance. However, it does make me want to pay more attention when this term is being used deliberately in the presence of a sun-king figure. Given that the Night’s King paid a significant price in exchange for her icy embrace, the Night’s Queen could truly be considered a hoary whore. So, to answer Tyrion's incessant question, where do whores go? To the God's Eye.
  9. I agree with this. There is a strong likelihood that she went to the HoB&W, as there are many similarities with that institution and the God's Eye. It's just not explicit in ASOIAF. Seeing the God's Eye first-hand will be a treat in the coming books.
  10. Not literally, but metaphorically equivalent. It's GRRM's symbolism through his word play: Isle of Gods = God's I.
  11. That, they will.
  12. There might be more than a few black brothers hidden with the embers under the weirwoods.
  13. I'm not sure if she actually goes to the HoB&W, but she does go to the Isle of Gods, i.e. the God's Eye Island.
  14. No, they don't.
  15. Starks have a lot of shame when it comes to their hoary whores.
  16. You don't say.
  17. I had no idea that "rime" was "frost". I only associated it with the Rime of the Ancient Mariner (which happens to be about a guy who shoots down a bird from the sky, instigating doom to his ship and fellow crewmen, who all die and then are resurrected, then get sucked down a whirlpool before the guy gets pulled out of the sea and ends up grey and alone telling his tale -- but that's neither here nor there!). There is something with the concept of being sheathed in a cold, hard veil. Enameled armor, for instance. Here's the passage on Jaime's phenomenal fever dream in ASOS: So, yes, @LmL is definitely correct in his equating of the Others to the Kingsguard. It's hard to say what was the price paid by the hoary whore and the rapist. There is an exchange, meaning both parties gave and receive. Yes, it is not equitable, but it doesn't have to be. The point is that both parties were transformed in some sense. In Thistle's case, she gains eternal life. It's a horrific undead hell, of course, but a it's a transformation nonetheless. In this story, a woman can be both a rape victim and a whore who receives a payment. Tysha was raped horribly but paid each time. Tyrion raped a whore in Selhorys (where else?) before paying her. Maybe we should be focusing on tracking down these types of incidents involving whores, at least to start. Maybe it is the inequitable exchange of violence and payment that creates the bloodmagic necessary to create the Others. Man, this story is dark. Good examples. Why not both? Good points to consider. I suppose we look for an exchange (a violent exchange?) between a perpetrator and a whore, possibly observed by a third party, and accompanied by the ice-moon and/or sun-king symbolism.
  18. In his latest livecast, @LmL brought forth the notion that Cersei was symbolically transformed into an ice-moon figure when she was imprisoned and shaved bald in the Great Sept, the huge white structure on Visenya's Hill. This represented her death and rebirth, and then she walks back to the sun-king's Red Keep in her pale glory.
  19. One of the castles along the Wall is named "Hoarfrost" FWIW
  20. The Others are going through the Wall and marching south. Some think it's to King's Landing, but it seems there might be a big battle brewing at the God's Eye (see here, among other theories). A Hoare as LC of the NW is definitely interesting, though. It fits the symbolism.
  21. Great find! I haven't dug into all these "whore" references yet, but it looks promising!
  22. The Others are covered in icy armor, which has no real color of its own but takes on the hue of its surroundings. They are described as "pale," however. In the same vein, just as Hoarfrost appears white, as it is crystalline water, but it also has no color. And then, as noted in this earlier essay by @LmL, we see what lies beneath the frosty hoar (from aSoS):
  23. A Song of Ice & Fire is creepy. Very creepy. George R.R. Martin is a master horror writer. Part of what makes good horror fiction (or horror non-fiction, I guess) is the ability to tap deep down through to our most elemental drives, and well our unconscious fears up to the surface. While everyone loves a good jump scare now and then, the darkest, most profound works of horror are those which do not stray far from archetypal forms: The purpose of this essay is to not focus on specifically horror aspects of ASOIAF. Rather, I intend to show how awareness of Jungian archetypes can help us understand the components of our being, namely our body, soul and spirit. Then, I will take a few examples of how these components of being are being explored within the ASOIAF stories within this perspective, including the wonderful horror tropes. Finally, I will offer a few comments on how we can use these stories to look upon our own lives and better understand the horrors and sufferings we all face in the real world. Yeah, fun stuff. TL;DR: My full essay can be found here.
  24. I wrote an essay outlining the relationship between Nietzsche's "The Birth of Tragedy" with ASOIAF. It's a bit lengthy, so grab a cup of coffee and have a read if you're interested in philosophy, psychology and mythology. The introduction is as follows: With this, I want to give a shout-out to the contributors on this forum. I don't participate nearly as much as I would like, but I have been inspired by a number of you here. Please feel free to respond to my ideas here or on my wordpress page. I'd appreciate the feedback.
  25. Ooo, I like this. Definitely a Dionysian, especially with his being kidnapped by pirates and saved by the dolphins. Given that Aeron died and returned, there is certainly a connection there. I love that plowman image too. Stole it from somewhere, but it's originally from the Luttrell Psalter. Lots of great iconography in that book. http://www.bl.uk/turning-the-pages/?id=a0f935d0-a678-11db-83e4-0050c2490048&type=book