Black Crow

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  1. Yet that's exactly what we're repeatedly told in text happened, with kings and princes sent to the Wall with their followers, and those dungeons capable of holding 500 men. By contrast the centralised Targaryen regime is all about retrenchment and consolidation.
  2. That's fairly explicit in Maester Luwin's history; the Pact held until the Andals tooled up. Its not quite as simple as that of course, the Andal "invasion" and the pogroms against the tree-huggers were only possible through the active assistance of the local population, but conversely some families held true to the Pact. Whether the tree-huggers recognised the distinction is also uncertain. Have they done so or do all white-eyes look the same? As to allegiances, again they may not be so straightforward as they at first appear. Were the Andals assisted by the Riverlands families because they offered liberation from sacrifices to the trees? The Starks appear at first sight to be "right" with the Old Gods, but their deadly rivals, the Boltons, appear to be truer to the old ways.
  3. Don't forget that although the road is obviously a great help in supplying the Wall it also has another and more important function in linking the kingdoms. Think of it as a transcontinental freeway; yes it might be possible to drive on it from San Francisco to New York, but how many people do? Most of the traffic is going from place to place along the road. Or in British terms the A1 links London and Edinburgh but how many travel the length of it, rather than say from Newcastle to York or Peterborough.
  4. Gods this one moved fast overnight with barely time to read the posts before tumbling out to work. There are, however, a few points I'd like to address in due course, starting with the Watch. If we take the calendar out of it to avoid confusion, we have three "ages" to consider. In the beginning there's no evidence that the Wall was manned. Notwithstanding the legends of ice being dug from frozen lakes this was raised by magic and blood; and in the beginning the Watch may have comprised no more than the 13 guardians of the Black Gate. Then we have the overthrow of the Nights King and a whole rash of castles, though not necessarily all being built and manned at the same time, while the Watch itself is fed by huge numbers of captives taken in the wars of the Seven Kingdoms. Then comes Aegon the Conqueror and the Pax Targaryena; all of a sudden the war prisoners dry up along with the wars; and then quite abruptly, without those war prisoners the present dire situation. There'll be more wrinkles in there I've no doubt but the changing circumstances are abrupt, not a long slow decline
  5. A little kid who's been physically wasting away while in a coma
  6. I agree that they are connected and closely connected at that, but GRRM's answer to the very specific question which was asked does very strongly suggest that they are not geographically connected
  7. I think that we're probably talking at cross purposes here. SirArthur questioned whether the giant bats could have been dragons; I responded that dragons don't hang upside down; then you provided a reference to Viserion hanging downwards... For the record I think at this stage that bats are bats and dragons are dragons; then question is whether the bats adopted as a sigil by both the Lothsons and the Whents of Harrenhal have any significance and in particular do we have any clues that might link them to the three-fingered tree-huggers?
  8. OK I can't spell, German isn't my first language, but the point remains that Shadrich is talking about a mouse with wings rather than a knight with wings, hence the bat-Lothston connection and talking about Westerosi heraldry rather than "great black bats". As you say, it all comes down to what GRRM is trying to convey.
  9. That's the point. Ser Shadrich ["of the Shady Glen" - someone hiding in the shadows?] is the Mad Mouse and when Sansa/Alayne asks him whether he's going to try out for the order of Winged Knights, he responds that a mouse with wings would be ridiculous. However as I pointed out long ago, in German a bat is der fleidermaus, a winged mouse. That makes him either a Whent or a Lothston. The first have vanished from Westerosi history too soon to have lost one of their number, while on the other hand he shares red hair with Mad Danelle Lothston. Of itself that might be straightforward enough but his boyish stature, his age and the Harrenhal connection raise the question that he might have been the Knight of Laughing Tree - hence the discussion anent the possible significance and allegiances of bats
  10. I'm afraid I'd disagree with that interpretation because context is everything. GRRM's comments were made in response to a specific question and whilst I agree that a fight took place and ended as described, GRRM's warning about dreams not being literal, given the context of that question strongly suggests that Lyanna's death took place somewhere else. January 02, 2002 CONCERNING THE TOWER OF JOY I have a question which I'm sure you can (and will?) answer. It's about the Tower of Joy. The image we get from Ned's description is pretty powerful. But it doesn't make sense. The top three kingsguards, including the lord commander and the best knight in ages, Ser Arthur Dayne are present there. Lyanna is in the tower, she asked Ned to promise him something. This, so says the general consensus us little Jon Snow, who is Lyanna's and Rhaegar's. No sense denying this However, what are the Kingsguards doing fighting Eddard? Eddard would never hurt Lyanna, nor her child. The little one would be safe with Eddard as well, him being a close relative. So I ask you, was there someone else with Lyanna and Jon? GRRM: You'll need to wait for future books to find out more about the Tower of Joy and what happened there, I fear. I might mention, though, that Ned's account, which you refer to, was in the context of a dream... and a fever dream at that. Our dreams are not always literal.
  11. My bad, although there's a bit of a problem in envisaging how this works - where does the tail go for a start? Bats hang upside down or can hang upside down because they have no forelegs on account of their having evolved into wings. On the other-hand if GRRM says Viserion is hanging like a bat then he's hanging like a bat, but does that then point to a connection?
  12. We're never told of dragons hanging upside down, but on the other hand legend has it that dragons originated as fire worms. We do know that they are creatures of magic - fire made flesh. Perhaps back in the day they were created as fire wyrm/bat hybrids, using magic to combine the fire with wings.
  13. I think that's the by far most likely explanation for their sigils being so similar.
  14. Not with Ser Shadrich still on the loose
  15. Indeed, but I'm far more inclined to look at the reason as being political rather than mystical; an opportunity for conspirators and more importantly perhaps different factions to meet, with the business of the winter roses being an overture by Rhaegar not to a young lady he'd suddenly [very suddenly] become infatuated with, but to House Stark and the northern conspiracy being woven together by the Blessed St. Jon of Arryn.