Free Northman Reborn

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  1. Second strongest houses in each kingdom?

    That is just regurgitating Lord Varys's favorite essay on the matter. Almost word for word, in fact. Think for yourself, man. Even Manderly won't have better than a 3-1 infantry-cavalry ratio. Else he would exceed the Reach in that respect. And for him to exceed the Bolton's heavy horse, a 3-1 ratio would give him around 6000 men altogether.
  2. Second strongest houses in each kingdom?

    Far more likely is that he mentions the heavy horse because it is THE most important aspect of military strength, hence he doesn't even bother going into how many infantry he can raise. Infantry can be raised even if you push a sharpened stick into the hands of a peasant farmer, as we saw in the Frey army following Roose Bolton to the North. Think about the heavy horse statement for a moment. As I stated above. House Bolton has over 1000 cavalry. Most likely around 1300 cavalry in fact, given the 600 that remained at the Dreadfort after their main force went with Rob. The Manderlys must have more than that. So 1500 at least. They are unlikely to have better than a 3-1 infantry to cavalry ratio, as even in the Reach that is not exceeded. So that means a minimum total armed strength of 6000 men.
  3. Second strongest houses in each kingdom?

    Incorrect. We do know that the Freys are the Tully's most powerful bannermen. It is stated in the books. Perhaps if Nittanian is reading this, he would be able to find the exact quote where this is stated, as he seems to have an uncanny ability to find almost any reference in the books. I do however know that it is indeed confirmed. As for the Manderlys. We have direct confirmation that they are the richest Northern lords. We have direct information from Wyman Manderly that they have the most heavy cavalry in the North. We have confirmation that they rule the economically most active part of the North. And the largest settlement. It is pretty much a foregone conclusion that they have the largest population of any Northern lord as a result of the economic activity in their lands. And with the highest population and greatest wealth, the largest infantry army would go hand in hand. So we can with great certainty state that they are indeed the most powerful vassals to the Starks.
  4. Second strongest houses in each kingdom?

    Apart from a common sense assessment of their relative geographical position compared to other Northern lords, we have Wyman Manderly categorically stating to Davos in Dance that he STILL has more heavy cavalry than any lord North of the Neck, as of Dance. The "STILL" comment indicates that this was true even before he suffered his losses, and it still remains so, after he has suffered his losses. Consider that he suffered signficantly more losses than House Bolton, who largely kept their forces intact while sending other Northern lords' men off to die in various battles, and it is quite evident that House Manderly must have had an even larger advantage over House Bolton at the start of the series than they do now.
  5. Second strongest houses in each kingdom?

    I should be tired of pointing it out by now, but can't let it stand uncorrected. House Manderly was the strongest Northern vassal House by a significant margin, at the start of the series. They have the largest population in the North, have the largest army and have the most money. Consider that House Bolton would have sent at least 500 cavalry South with Robb, and had another 600 left at the Dreadfort. Placing their cavalry strength at least at 1100. And if they sent 700-800 cavalry South with Robb, as would appear likely, then their total cavalry strength is at around 1300 or more. And yet the Manderlys are above that, even now. Add to that their larger population, and their total army size would be significantly higher than that of the Boltons.
  6. SpaceX--Spacecraft, rockets, and Mars

    The really interesting comparisons will start becoming evident when Falcon Heavy flies and SLS starts coming online. The cost differences will be stark. Mind boggling, even. $1 billion per expendable SLS launch vs perhaps $100m for the reusable Falcon Heavy.
  7. Why is the Winterfell Heart Tree pond so cold?

    No, in the story it died fighting a bunch of fire dragons. It defeated the fire dragons, but was melted by them in return, or something along those lines.
  8. Why is the Winterfell Heart Tree pond so cold?

    Well, there is of course the oft-discussed parallel with George's unrelated story, I think its called "The Ice Dragon". A children's story set in a world with some similar elements to Westeros, where an Ice Dragon fights a bunch of Fire Dragons, and when it dies it melts into a pool that remains ice cold for eternity. Interesting, although of course it is impossible to say how much of it served as influences for A Song of Ice and Fire.
  9. Questions about Manderlys move to the North

    Yes, we have taken this discussion much further in a seperate "Castle Garrison Size" thread I created for that purpose. Nittanian provided pretty much every quote in the books on various castles' garrison sizes, and it is clear that in peacetime a garrison of 100-200 seems quite large for almost every castle, while in wartime 300 seems to be about average for a large castle, with the Freys allocating 400 to the Twins during the War of the Five Kings and the Dreadfort being an extreme outlier with a 600 strong garrison during the War.
  10. Castle garrison sizes

    There is a fanmade diagram on the Winterfell Wiki page. I don't know if it is accurate, but it shows Winterfell being roughly 300m x 250m in size. We do know the Godswood is supposed to cover 3 acres, and on that diagram it does appear to roughly correspond to that size. So I guess it is a ballpark representation of the complex. http://awoiaf.westeros.org/index.php/Winterfell
  11. Who is the True Targaryen Heir?

    Well, as I have said before, I don't think it is going to come down to one or the other. I think they will both sit the Throne, one after the other. Dany is the Conqueror. That is her theme. She will conquer the Throne with Fire and Blood. But Jon is foreshadowed to be King. He will rule the Realm after Dany's death at the end of the series.
  12. Who is the True Targaryen Heir?

    Where was the legal and religious imperative or smallfolk support when Robert Baratheon, Ned Stark, Jon Arryn and Hoster Tully rose up and overthrew the Targaryen dynasty? Robert's selection afterward was only an aftethought, to try and find a reason to make the rebellion look even somewhat a continuation of the previous order. In that case, the support of the North, Vale, Riverlands, Stormlands and Westerlands was enough to force the installation of a new king, the feelings of any remaining opponents be damned. The point is simply that the wishes of the smallfolk and whatever the Septons might feel about the overthrow of the Faith backed Targaryen rulers were utterly ignored. The smallfolk in the North, Vale, Riverlands etc. weren't consulted over their views on who should rule. It was enough that the Lords Paramount of those regions chose a cause, and raised their banners accordingly. Sure, it was up to each vassal lord to still choose to honor their oaths to their liege lords or not, but in the end enough did so for might to make right. The same will apply this time around. In any case, we have no idea what the state of each of the Seven Kingdoms will be when the dust settles and Jon's identity is revealed. Nor do we know what the state of Dany's forces will be at that point. And as I keep saying. There won't be a war between a "Jon" side and a "Dany" side. But there will be factions of various strengths that will support the various contenders. And thus a marriage between the two might just be brokered to unite all of those factions in the face of impending doom from the Others. And I am sure, based on previous examples, that there are some very unexpected developments and revelations still to ocur, which will have a significant impact on the state of affairs and attitudes of various lords when the appropriate time arrives.
  13. Who is the True Targaryen Heir?

    I disagree with the popular opinion argument. The opinion of the smallfolk does not matter. The opinions of the lords matter. And they will largely go with what serves their own interests best. If there are two candidates, both with claims of varying strength to the Throne, the lords will support the claimant that serves their personal interests best. Legalistic or religious based technicalities be damned.
  14. Who is the True Targaryen Heir?

    Any legalistic argument faces the inevitable question: Who enforces these laws? There is no Supreme Court that gives a definitive judgment. It is up to whoever holds the balance of power at any given time to decide.
  15. SpaceX--Spacecraft, rockets, and Mars

    Gwynne Shotwell just announced that Red Dragon has been moved out from the 2018 to the 2020 window.