Ygrain

R+L=J v.162

661 posts in this topic

Reference guide

 

The R+L=J theory claims Jon Snow most probably is the son of crown prince Rhaegar Targaryen and Ned's sister Lyanna Stark.

 

The Tower of the Hand has an excellent analysis of this theory:

Jon Snow's Parents

 

And Westeros' Citadel also provides a summary:

Jon Snow's Parents

 

A Wiki of Ice and Fire:

Jon Snow Theories

 

Radio Westeros podcast:

A Dragon, a Wolf and a Rose

 

Frequently Asked Questions:

 

How can Jon be a Targaryen if ordinary fire burned his hand?

Targaryens are not immune to fire. It's a myth that has been refuted by a list of Targaryens being burned. Danaerys 'the unburnt' was indeed unscathed when she hatched the dragon eggs, but that has not stopped her being burned on other occasions. See this thread on Targaryen fire immunity.

 

Don't all Targaryens have hallmark Valryian silver-golden hair and purple eyes?

Not all of them: Valarr and Queen Alysanne had blue eyes. Bittersteel, who like Jon was half first men blood, had brown hair. Baelor Breakspear and his son(s) and Jon's own half-sister Rhaenys had the Dornish look (dark hair, black eyes, olive skin). Rhaenyra Targaryen's three sons all had brown hair and brown eyes even though both their parents had light silver-gold hair.

Had Jon Valyrian features, it would give his parentage away: "He had the Stark face if not the name: long, solemn, guarded, a face that gave nothing away. Whoever his mother had been, she had left little of herself in her son." Tyrion got the bit about the mother wrong, though: his mother was the Stark.

 

If Jon isn't Ned's son, then why does he look so much like him?

Jon looks very like Arya, and Arya looks very like Lyanna. Jon is Ned's nephew, and Lyanna and Ned looked similar.

 

Ned is too honourable to lie. If he says Jon is his son, doesn't that mean he must be?

Ned tells Arya that sometimes lies can be honourable. His final words, a confession of his guilt, are a lie to protect Sansa. While a lie can be honourable, cheating on his wife isn't, so Ned's famed honour points to Jon not being his son.

 

How can Jon be half-Targaryen and have a direwolf?

He's also half Stark, through Lyanna. Ned's trueborn children are half Tully and that doesn't stop them having direwolves.

 

Why doesn't Ned ever think about Lyanna being Jon's mother?

Ned doesn't think about anyone being Jon's mother. If he did, there would be no mystery. He names 'Wylla' to Robert, but we do not see him thinking of Wylla being Jon's mother.

There's a hidden hint at who Jon's mother might be: In chapter 4, Eddard's internal monologue goes "Lyanna ... Ned had loved her with all his heart." and in chapter 6, Catelyn thinks "Whoever Jon's mother had been, Ned must have loved her fiercely".

 

Why would Ned not at least tell Catelyn?

We don't have a list of what Ned promised to Lyanna, but know he takes his promises seriously. Maybe he promised not to tell anyone. In Chapter 45, Ned is uncertain what Cat would do if it came to Jon's life over that of her own children. If Catelyn knew that Jon was Rhaegar's son, she might feel that keeping him at Winterfell presented a serious risk to her own children. Ultimately, Catelyn did not need to know, so maybe Ned simply chose to be on the safe side.

 

Doesn't Ned refer to Robb and Jon as "my sons in the very first chapter?

In speech, not in thought. Ned is keeping Jon's parentage secret. He never thinks of Jon as his son: In Chapter 45, Ned thinks of his children "Robb and Sansa and Arya and Bran and Rickon and explicitly excludes Jon from the list. ADwD Chapter 34 has Bran's vision of younger Ned in the Winterfell godswood: "...let them grow up close as brothers, with only love between them," he prayed, "and let my lady wife find it in her heart to forgive..." which not make sense if they are brothers.

 

Since Rhaegar was already married, wouldn't Jon still be a bastard?

He might, or might not. There was a tradition of polygamy among Targaryens in the past, so the possibility that Rhaegar and Lyanna married is not easily ruled out. A pro-legitimacy argument is this: The presence of the three kingsguards at the Tower of Joy is best explained if they were defending the heir to the throne, which Jon would only be if he was legitimate.

 

Can we be certain polygamy is not illegal?

Aegon I and Maegor I practised polygamy. In Westeros, unlike a constitutional monarchy, royals are not subject to the law. So if there ever was a law against it, it did not apply to the Targaryens: In Chapter 33 it says "like their dragons the Targaryens answered to neither gods nor men". Examples demonstrate that it was considered an option for Targaryens: Aegon IV and Daemon Blackfyre may have considered it for Daemon, Jorah Mormont suggested it to Daenerys as a viable option, and she said the same about Quentyn Martell.

George R.R. Martin says in this SSM: "If you have a dragon, you can have as many wives as you want". There is alsothis SSM predating the worldbook.

On Polygamy essay by Ygrain with additions by Rhaenys_Targaryen

 

Weren't the Kingsguard at Tower of Joy on the basis of an order from Aerys, to guard Lyanna as a hostage?

If so, why would they have apparently made no effort to use this leverage against Robert and Ned? Some argue their Kingsguard vows would have taken precedence and still have required them to leave the Tower to protect Viserys when he became heir -- unless there was another that took precedence [Jon]. Others think they were guarding Lyanna as a hostage at the Tower of Joy. Some say that makes little sense: She would better be kept hostage at King's Landing, and wouldn't require kingsguards to guard her. The mere presence of three kingsguards implies something more important: guarding members of the royal family or maybe the heir.

Frequently suggested readings: At the tower of joy by MtnLion and support of the toj analysis by Ygrain

 

Isn't there an SSM that says the 3 Kingsguard were following Rhaegar's orders though?

The SSM you may be thinking of is probably this: The King's Guards don't get to make up their own orders. They serve the king, they protect the king and the royal family, but they're also bound to obey their orders, and if Prince Rhaegar gave them a certain order, they would do that. They can't say, "No we don't like that order, we'll do something else."

We know from Barristan, protecting the king is the first and most important of all kingsguard duties. Jamie suggests some other KG to stay with the king when he wants to leave for the Trident and we also learn of a ritual that is performed when all KG meet and the king is guarded by someone who is not from the order.

"Protect vs Obey" is an ongoing subject of debate that is unlikely to be settled until we know more. Either viewpoint is compatible with R+L=J.

 

Wouldn't Viserys take precedence anyway? Rhaegar died without becoming king, and doesn't the world book call Viserys, not Aegon, Aerys' new heir?

No, in the case of an eldest son dying before the king dies, a grandson comes before a younger son. Even in the case the grandson is yet unborn at the time of death, he would succeed (heir apparent vs. heir presumptive). The world book is written with a Lannister bias (it may be propaganda to undermine Dornish support for the Targaryens) and in hindsightby maesters who have never learned all of what we know from Ned's dreams and memories. If it still turns out to be true... see the next answer.

 

Are matters of succession just as clear as presented here?

Succession quarrels are a part of medieval power play and even a very clear inheritance could well be contested. So maybe in King's Landing things did happen as the world book says. Rhaegar and Aerys may have been at odds over the succession. Rhaegar told Jaime before leaving for the Trident that he intended to call a council, and The Great Councils of the past have dealt with matters of succession. Who would have accepted such a change is a question worth asking.

 

Ned is dead. Who's going to tell anyone about it?

Bloodraven and Bran may have learned of it through the weirwood network. Benjen might know. Checkov's CrannogmanHowland Reed is the sole survivor of the encounter at the Tower of Joy, and George R.R. Martin has stated he has not yet appeared because he knows too much about the central mystery of the book. "They had found him [Ned] still holding her [Lyanna's] body" tells that there also was someone else besides Howland to find Ned.

 

Why is this important? What impact can it have on the story?

The careful way the mystery of Jon's parentage was created is reason to believe it's important. What impact it will have on the rest of the series is still unknown.

 

This theory is too obvious and too many people believe it to be fact. How can it be true?

It is not so obvious to the majority of readers. Some will get it on their first read, but most will not. Readers who go to online fan forums, such as this, still represent a very small minority of the readership. Also, A Game of Thrones has been out since 1996. That's more than 18 years of readers being able to piece together this mystery. Crowd-sourced internet-based mystery solving like this inevitably make solved mysteries seem more obvious in hindsight.

 

George R.R. Martin is a "breaker of tropes, there can be no hidden prince, it's simply too cliché.

In order to break a trope it needs to be installed in the first place. It is yet unknown what will happen to Jon in the future. Being the son of Lyanna and Rhaegar does not imply the fairy-tale style happy ending associated with the hidden prince trope.

 

Is there a list of all R+L=J clues that have been found?

There is a list of R+L=J hints, clues and foreshadowing compiled by sj4iy.

 

Since this theory has been refined so well, will Martin change the outcome of the story to surprise his fans?

He has stated that he won't change the outcome of the story just because some people have put together all the clues and solved the puzzle.

 

A thread for discussing strengths and weaknesses of the theory that Jon Snow's parents are Rhaegar and Lyanna.

Previous editions:

 

Please click on the spoiler below to reveal links to all previous editions of this thread

Spoiler

Lyanna + Rhaegar = Jon Thread (thread one)

yanna + Rhaegar = Jon Thread (thread two)

The Lyanna + Rhaegar = Jon thread (Part III) (thread three)

The Lyanna + Rhaegar = Jon thread (Part IV) (thread four)

The Lyanna + Rhaegar = Jon Thread (Part V) (thread five)

The Lyanna + Rhaegar = Jon Thread (Part VI) (thread six)

The Rhaegar + Lyanna = Jon Thread Part VII (thread seven)

The Rhaegar + Lyanna = Jon thread, Part VIII (thread eight)

The Rhaegar + Lyanna = Jon thread, Part IX (thread nine)

The Rhaegar + Lyanna =Jon Thread, Part X(thread ten)

The R+L=J thread, part XI (thread eleven)

The R+L=J thread, part XII (thread twelve)

R+L=J Part XXIII (thread thirteen)

R+L=J Part XXIV (thread fourteen)

R+L=J XXV (thread fifteen)

R+L=J v.16 (thread sixteen)

R+L=J v.17 (thread seventeen)

R+L=J v.18 (thread eighteen)

R+L=J v.19 (thread nineteen)

R+L=J v.20 (thread twenty)

R+L=J v.21 (thread twenty-one)

R+L=J v.22 (thread twenty-two)

R+L=J v.22a (thread twenty-two (a))

R+L=J v.23 (thread twenty-three)

R+L=J v.24 (thread twenty-four)

R+L=J v.25 (thread twenty-five)

R+L=J v.26 (thread twenty-six)

R+L=J v.27 (thread twenty-seven)

R+L=J v.28 (thread twenty-eight)

R+L=J v.29 (thread twenty-nine)

R+L=J v.30 (thread thirty)

R+L=J v.31 (thread thirty-one)

R+L=J v.32 (thread thirty-two)

R+L=J v.33 (thread thirty-three)

R+L=J v.34 (thread thirty-four)

R+L=J v.35 (thread thirty-five)

R+L=J v.36 (thread thirty-six)

R+L=J v.37 (thread thirty-seven)

R+L=J v.38 (thread thirty-eight)

R+L=J v.39 (thread thirty-nine)

"R+L=J v.40" (thread forty)

"R+L=J v.41" (thread forty-one)

"R+L=J v.42" (thread forty-two)

"R+L=J v.43" (thread forty-three)

"R+L=J v.44" (thread forty-four)

"R+L=J v.45" (thread forty-five)

"R+L=J v.46" (thread forty-six)

"R+L=J v.47" (thread forty-seven)

"R+L=J v.48" (thread forty-eight)

"R+L=J v.49" (thread forty-nine)

"R+L=J v.50" (thread fifty)

"R+L=J v.51" (thread fifty-one)

"R+L=J v.52" (thread fifty-two)

"R+L=J v.53" (thread fifty-three)

"R+L=J v.54" (thread fifty-four)

"R+L=J v.55" (thread fifty-five)

"R+L=J v.56" (thread fifty-six)

"R+L=J v.57" (thread fifty-seven)

"R+L=J v.58" (thread fifty-eight)

"R+L=J v.59" (thread fifty-nine)

"R+L=J v.60" (thread sixty)

"R+L=J v.61" (thread sixty-one)

"R+L=J v.62" (thread sixty-two)

"R+L=J v.63" (thread sixty-three)

"R+L=J v.64" (thread sixty-four)

"R+L=J v.65" (thread sixty-five)

"R+L=J v.66" (thread sixty-six)

"R+L=J v.67" (thread sixty-seven)

"R+L=J v.68" (thread sixty-eight)

"R+L=J v.69" (thread sixty-nine)

"R+L=J v.70" (thread seventy)

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"R+L=J v.76" (thread seventy-six)

"R+L=J v.77" (thread seventy-seven)

"R+L=J v.78" (thread seventy-eight)

"R+L=J v.79" (thread seventy-nine)

"R+L=J v.80" (thread eighty)

"R+L=J v.81" (thread eighty-one)

"R+L=J v.82" (thread eighty-two)

"R+L=J v.83" (thread eighty-three)

"R+L=J v.84" (thread eighty-four)

"R+L=J v.85" (thread eighty-five)

"R+L=J v.86" (thread eighty-six)

"R+L=J v.87" (thread eighty-seven)

"R+L=J v.88" (thread eighty-eight)

"R+L=J v.89" (thread eighty-nine)

"R+L=J v.90" (thread ninety)

"R+L=J v.91" (thread ninety-one)

"R+L=J v.92" (thread ninety-two)

"R+L=J v.93" (thread ninety-three)

R+L=J v.94" (thread ninety-four)

"R+L=J v.95" (thread ninety-five)

"R+L=J v.96" (thread ninety-six)

"R+L=J v.97" (thread ninety-seven)

"R+L=J v.98" (thread ninety-eight)

"R+L=J v.99" (thread ninety-nine)

"R+L=J v.100" (thread one hundred)

"R+L=J v.101" (thread one hundred one)

"R+L=J v.102" (thread one hundred two)

"R+L=J v.103" (thread one hundred three)

"R+L=J v.104" (thread one hundred four)

"R+L=J v.105" (thread one hundred five)

"R+L=J v.106" (thread one hundred six)

"R+L=J v.107" (thread one hundred seven)

"R+L=J v.108" (thread one hundred eight)

"R+L=J v.109" (thread one hundred nine)

"R+L=J v.110" (thread one hundred ten)

"R+L=J v.111" (thread one hundred eleven)

"R+L=J v.112" (thread one hundred twelve)

R+L=J v.113" (thread one hundred thirteen)

"R+L=J v.114" (thread one hundred fourteen)

The "[TWoIaF Spoilers] R+L=J" threads were used to openly discuss spoilers from TWoIaF at the time we needed to protect that information.

"[TWoIaF Spoilers] R+L=J v.1"

"[TWoIaF Spoilers] R+L=J v.2"

"[TWoIaF Spoilers] R+L=J v.3"

"R+L=J v.115" (thread one hundred fifteen)

"R+L=J v.116" (thread one hundred sixteen)

"R+L=J v.117" (thread one hundred seventeen)

"R+L=J v.118" (thread one hundred eighteen)

"R+L=J v.119" (thread one hundred nineteen)

"R+L=J v.120" (thread one hundred twenty)

"R+L=J v.121" (thread one hundred twenty one)

"R+L=J v.122" (thread one hundred twenty two)

"R+L=J v.123" (thread one hundred twenty three)

"R+L=J v.124" (thread one hundred twenty four)

"R+L=J v.125" (thread one hundred twenty five)

"R+L=J v.126" (thread one hundred twenty six)

"R+L=J v.127" (thread one hundred twenty seven)

"R+L=J v.128" (thread one hundred twenty eight)

"R+L=J v.129" (thread one hundred twenty nine)

"R+L=J v. 130" (thread one hundred thirty)

"R+L=J v.131" (thread one hundred thirty one)

"R+L=J v.132" (thread one hundred thirty two)

"R+L=J v.133" (thread one hundred thirty three)

"R+L=J v.134" (thread one hundred thirty four)

"R+L=J v.135" (thread one hundred thirty five)

R+L=J v.136" (thread one hundred thirty six)

"R+L=J v.137" (thread one hundred thirty seven)

"R+L=J v.138"(thread one hundred thirty eight)

"R+L=J v.139" (thread one hundred thirty nine)

"R+L=J v.140" (thread one hundred forty)

"R+L=J v.141" (thread one hundred forty one)

"R+L=J v.142(thread one hundred forty two)

"R+L=J v.143" (thread one hundred forty three)

"R+L=J v. 144" (thread one hundred forty four)

"R+L=J v.145" (thread one hundred forty five)

"R+L=J v.146" (thread one hundred forty six)

"R+L=J v. 147" (thread one hundred forty seven)

"R+L=J v. 148" (thread one hundred forty eight)

"R+L=J v.149"(thread one hundred forty nine)

"R+L=J v.150" (thread one hundred fifty)

"R+L=J v.151" (thread one hundred fifty one)

"R+L=J v.152" (thread one hundred fifty two)

"R+L=J v.153" (thread one hundred fifty three)

"R+L=J v.154" (thread one hundred fifty four)

"R+L=J v.155" (thread one hundred fifty five)

"R+L=J v.156" (thread one hundred fifty six)

"R+L=J v.157" (thread one hundred fifty seven)

"R+L=J v.158" (thread one hundred fifty eight)

"R+L=J v. 159" (thread one hundred fifty nine)

"R+L=J v. 160" (thread one hundred sixty) 

"R+L=J v.161" (thread one hundred sixty one)

 

Edited by Ygrain
a change of link

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To have something to chew on, I'm throwing in something that hasn't been discussed in a while. Perhaps it might spark some more observations.

“My queen,” the big man said slowly, “all you say is true. But Rhaegar lost on the Trident. He lost the battle, he lost the war, he lost the kingdom, and he lost his life. His blood swirled downriver with the rubies from his breastplate, and Robert the Usurper rode over his corpse to steal the iron Throne. Rhaegar fought valiantly, Rhaegar fought nobly, Rhaegar fought honorably. And Rhaegar died.” 

I find the comment rather interesting because Jorah fought at the Trident, as well, and may have actually seen Rhaegar fighting. The "valiant" part is obvious, I guess, but what prompted him into saying "nobly" and "honorably"? 

There is little that we know about Rhaegar on the Trident, and it concerns only the duel with Robert: they were on horseback, Robert was wounded by Rhaegar (seriously enough to leave the command of the pursuit of the royal forces to Ned) but eventually he was able to smash Rhaegar's chest. Rubies flew away, Rhaegar lay dead in the stream.

The thing is: we don't have a first person account of the duel. Ned talks about the two clashing again and again on their destriers, but when he arrived on the scene, Rhaegar was dead already. The HotU vision shows Rhaegar sinking to his knees, though, as if he was fighting on foot. It's not like the vision is valid like a recording, but there are some possible connections to be made in the light of this quote from Barristan:

A thrum of excitement went through the siege lines when Belwas was seen plodding toward the city, and from the walls and towers of Meereen came shouts and jeers. Oznak zo Pahl mounted up again, and waited, his striped lance held upright. The charger tossed his head impatiently and pawed the sandy earth. As massive as he was, the eunuch looked small beside the hero on his horse.

A chivalrous man would dismount,” said Arstan.

So, I think it is well possible that Rhaegar knocked Robert off the saddle first, and then dismounted himself, which was a tactical mistake that cost him his life. It was also something that Robert's ego would want to keep from Ned, which is why we never hear in Ned's PoV.

Curiously, Rhaegar wouldn't even be the first Targaryen to lose his life because of chivalry: Daemon Blackfyre made the same mistake by standing over the injured Gwayne Corbray to make sure no more harm came to him, by which he gave Bloodraven the time to access a vantage point and shower him with arrows. 

 

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Good point Ygrain, also we know from AGOT that Robert isn't very good at jousting, instead he excels in the melee. Where Rhaegar was an excellent jouster. IE: one of them was crap at unhorsing men, but great at smashing the shit out of them in hand to hand. The other was skilled at unhorsing a man. But only took up the sword later in his years. 

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And to say he fought honourably might imply Jorah feels Rhaegar's fight was an honourable one. aka. He did not dishonour Lyanna Stark. But had in fact married her. 

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1 hour ago, The Weirwoods Eyes said:

And to say he fought honourably might imply Jorah feels Rhaegar's fight was an honourable one. aka. He did not dishonour Lyanna Stark. But had in fact married her. 

Well, I do think that it plays all towards Rhaegar being honourable aka doing what a honourable man was supposed to do when he wanted to do right by his lady, but there is an even better quote for this:

“What did any Targaryen ever know of honor? Go down into your crypt and ask Lyanna about the dragon’s honor!”

“You avenged Lyanna at the Trident,” Ned said, halting beside the king. Promise me, Ned, she had whispered.

Robert claims that Rhaegar acted dishonourably towards Lyanna, to which Ned points out aloud that Robert already took his revenge on Rhaegar, but in his mind the mention of Rhaegar's honour, or lack thereof, evokes a promise to Lyanna. Now, if the promise somehow concerned the supposed dishonour, there is no reason for Ned not to share it with Robert, just like he told him about the promise to bury Lyanna at Winterfell. Therefore, I surmise that the content of the promise was something that Robert couldn't be told, and in the context of Rhaegar's supposed lack of honour, it would be the very opposite of what Robert thinks - that Rhaegar didn't dishonour Lyanna. And that would only mean marriage, because consensual but non-marital sex would still be dishonour to Lyanna. This particular promise would then concern not revealing that Jon is trueborn.

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Not sure how to quote from the previous closed thread, but I will try none-the-less.

Quote

purple-eyes wrote: ...there is also possibility that lyanna is mistress or wife of aerys, or paramour of arthur...

I replied:

Quote

No there isn't. 

If you have any evidence for the above - apart from wishful thinking - I'd love to read it.

Black Crow replied to my post above with:

Quote

Wishful thinking works both ways. Here's what GRRM actually said on the matter:

http://web.archive.org/web/20051103091500/nrctc.edu/fhq/vol1iss3/00103009.htm

Martin: The King's Guards don't get to make up their own orders. They serve the king, they protect the king and the royal family, but they're also bound to obey their orders, and if Prince Rhaegar gave them a certain order, they would do that.

Not sure exactly what Black Crow is getting at here as there is nothing apropos the quotes above.

Regardless, I await the evidence for the claims in the first quote.

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41 minutes ago, AdesteFideles said:

Not sure exactly what Black Crow is getting at here as there is nothing apropos the quotes above.

Not sure, either, but IMO, it is worth to post the whole thing - because the question is as important as the answer.

ShawCan you explain why the King's Guard chose to stand and fight Ned at the Tower of the Joy instead of protecting the remaining royal family members?

Martin: The King's Guards don't get to make up their own orders. They serve the king, they protect the king and the royal family, but they're also bound to obey their orders, and if Prince Rhaegar gave them a certain order, they would do that. They can't say, "No we don't like that order, we'll do something else."

 

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2 hours ago, Ygrain said:

Not sure, either, but IMO, it is worth to post the whole thing - because the question is as important as the answer.

ShawCan you explain why the King's Guard chose to stand and fight Ned at the Tower of the Joy instead of protecting the remaining royal family members?

Martin: The King's Guards don't get to make up their own orders. They serve the king, they protect the king and the royal family, but they're also bound to obey their orders, and if Prince Rhaegar gave them a certain order, they would do that. They can't say, "No we don't like that order, we'll do something else."

 

Even more confused now. 

Looking back, I'm sure Black Crow posted in support of his anti R+L=J stance, but the question and answer you posted would seem to support it.

Hopefully he will clarify.

 

Edit: Posted before I was finished. Added the last line.

Edited by AdesteFideles

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Quote

Shaw: Can you explain why the King's Guard chose to stand and fight Ned at the Tower of the Joy instead of protecting the remaining royal family members?

Martin: The King's Guards don't get to make up their own orders. They serve the king, they protect the king and the royal family, but they're also bound to obey their orders, and if Prince Rhaegar gave them a certain order, they would do that. They can't say, "No we don't like that order, we'll do something else."

I believe that there is important information in GRRM's answer, aside from the misdirection he adds, later. ;)

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57 minutes ago, MtnLion said:

I believe that there is important information in GRRM's answer, aside from the misdirection he adds, later. ;)

Yes!

"Can you explain why the King's Guard chose..."

The question impart that the KG knew all available information when they confronted Ned and hear what he had to say at the parley.

At the time Ned arrived the 3KGs saw that there's no reason to go to Dragonstone.  Their vow (even if they heard that Aerys proclaimed Viserys as "his" heir), constrain them at the tower.  Because in the tower, is a King... yet to be crowned.

One could argue, they have not yet received the news that Queen Rhaella crowned Viserys.  That perhaps, plans to send one KG to Dragonstone bearing news that Rhaegar has another legitimate son, was hampered with Ned's arrival.

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16 hours ago, Ygrain said:

Well, I do think that it plays all towards Rhaegar being honourable aka doing what a honourable man was supposed to do when he wanted to do right by his lady, but there is an even better quote for this:

“What did any Targaryen ever know of honor? Go down into your crypt and ask Lyanna about the dragon’s honor!”

“You avenged Lyanna at the Trident,” Ned said, halting beside the king. Promise me, Ned, she had whispered.

Robert claims that Rhaegar acted dishonourably towards Lyanna, to which Ned points out aloud that Robert already took his revenge on Rhaegar, but in his mind the mention of Rhaegar's honour, or lack thereof, evokes a promise to Lyanna. Now, if the promise somehow concerned the supposed dishonour, there is no reason for Ned not to share it with Robert, just like he told him about the promise to bury Lyanna at Winterfell. Therefore, I surmise that the content of the promise was something that Robert couldn't be told, and in the context of Rhaegar's supposed lack of honour, it would be the very opposite of what Robert thinks - that Rhaegar didn't dishonour Lyanna. And that would only mean marriage, because consensual but non-marital sex would still be dishonour to Lyanna. This particular promise would then concern not revealing that Jon is trueborn.

Another great catch Ygrain. 

 

I also like what MtnLion highlighted from that SSM.  

 

I sometimes wonder if Hightower might have crowned Jon already when Ned arrives.  There were certainly enough crowns in the Red Keep for Rhaegar to have taken one with him. Or if Hightower improvised with something home made. 

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17 hours ago, Ygrain said:

Well, I do think that it plays all towards Rhaegar being honourable aka doing what a honourable man was supposed to do when he wanted to do right by his lady, but there is an even better quote for this:

“What did any Targaryen ever know of honor? Go down into your crypt and ask Lyanna about the dragon’s honor!”

“You avenged Lyanna at the Trident,” Ned said, halting beside the king. Promise me, Ned, she had whispered.

Robert claims that Rhaegar acted dishonourably towards Lyanna, to which Ned points out aloud that Robert already took his revenge on Rhaegar, but in his mind the mention of Rhaegar's honour, or lack thereof, evokes a promise to Lyanna. Now, if the promise somehow concerned the supposed dishonour, there is no reason for Ned not to share it with Robert, just like he told him about the promise to bury Lyanna at Winterfell. Therefore, I surmise that the content of the promise was something that Robert couldn't be told, and in the context of Rhaegar's supposed lack of honour, it would be the very opposite of what Robert thinks - that Rhaegar didn't dishonour Lyanna. And that would only mean marriage, because consensual but non-marital sex would still be dishonour to Lyanna. This particular promise would then concern not revealing that Jon is trueborn.

Nice.

I think this fits nicely with my idea that the crowning at HH symbolically mirrors Jon's conception. Since Lyanna was literally being honored by Rhaegar at HH, then it follows that Jon is trueborn. After all, you can't honor a highborn lady by putting a bastard in her belly.

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20 hours ago, The Weirwoods Eyes said:

Good point Ygrain, also we know from AGOT that Robert isn't very good at jousting, instead he excels in the melee. Where Rhaegar was an excellent jouster. IE: one of them was crap at unhorsing men, but great at smashing the shit out of them in hand to hand. The other was skilled at unhorsing a man. But only took up the sword later in his years. 

Doesn't quite work that way I'm afraid. Jousting works by riding hard at your opponent and using speed and momentum to overthrow him or at the very least unbalance him. What little we actually know of the fight suggests they were circling each other at close quarters with no opportunity for Rhaegar to take a run at Robert and no way of using his lance, which in those circumstances would have been useless to him. Presumably he took to his sword - and is there any mention of what happened to that

In the circumstances its more than likely that Robert unhorsed Rhaegar and then dismounted to finish him off - murder him in effect.

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11 hours ago, AdesteFideles said:

Even more confused now. 

Looking back, I'm sure Black Crow posted in support of his anti R+L=J stance, but the question and answer you posted would seem to support it.

Hopefully he will clarify.

 

Edit: Posted before I was finished. Added the last line.

Not anti-R+L=J at all; just an open mind.

According to GRRM the Kings Guard were at the tower rather than on Dragonstone because they were obeying orders which he implies were given to them by Rhaegar. We don't know what those orders were, but what I will say is that the location may be more important than the occupant of the tower. Argument over this question tends to run along the lines that since their sworn duty was to protect the royal family as a matter of course, the fact they were obeying orders they didn't like may mean that they were not doing so.

An alternative that reconciles both is that they were indeed doing their duty were but unhappy about orders that sent them into the Dornish marches rather than friendlier territory. We just don't know.

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57 minutes ago, Black Crow said:

Doesn't quite work that way I'm afraid. Jousting works by riding hard at your opponent and using speed and momentum to overthrow him or at the very least unbalance him. What little we actually know of the fight suggests they were circling each other at close quarters with no opportunity for Rhaegar to take a run at Robert and no way of using his lance, which in those circumstances would have been useless to him. Presumably he took to his sword - and is there any mention of what happened to that

Doesn't quite work like that at GRRMth, either. Jousting is 75% horsemanship here, so it follows that Rhaegar was the better horseman than Robert.

57 minutes ago, Black Crow said:

In the circumstances its more than likely that Robert unhorsed Rhaegar and then dismounted to finish him off - murder him in effect.

Except that Robert never mentions unhorsing Rhaegar ("first I smashed him down the horse and then I smashed his chest, har"). Nor was Robert a clear victor from the get-go - mind you, he got injured by Rhaegar, and it was not just a minor scratch, or else he wouldn't have had to stay behind and leave Ned in charge of the pursuit.

Plus, your scenario doesn't explain why Jorah claims that Rhaegar fought honourably.

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Not necessarily. This scenario is about Trouserless Bob and doesn't prevent Rhaeger fighting more honourably than his killer did

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3 hours ago, Black Crow said:

Not necessarily. This scenario is about Trouserless Bob and doesn't prevent Rhaeger fighting more honourably than his killer did

So what would constitute the honourability?

Plus, sorry but I don't understand the bolded.

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On 7/23/2016 at 10:53 PM, Ygrain said:

To have something to chew on, I'm throwing in something that hasn't been discussed in a while. Perhaps it might spark some more observations.

“My queen,” the big man said slowly, “all you say is true. But Rhaegar lost on the Trident. He lost the battle, he lost the war, he lost the kingdom, and he lost his life. His blood swirled downriver with the rubies from his breastplate, and Robert the Usurper rode over his corpse to steal the iron Throne. Rhaegar fought valiantly, Rhaegar fought nobly, Rhaegar fought honorably. And Rhaegar died.” 

I find the comment rather interesting because Jorah fought at the Trident, as well, and may have actually seen Rhaegar fighting. The "valiant" part is obvious, I guess, but what prompted him into saying "nobly" and "honorably"? 

There is little that we know about Rhaegar on the Trident, and it concerns only the duel with Robert: they were on horseback, Robert was wounded by Rhaegar (seriously enough to leave the command of the pursuit of the royal forces to Ned) but eventually he was able to smash Rhaegar's chest. Rubies flew away, Rhaegar lay dead in the stream.

The thing is: we don't have a first person account of the duel. Ned talks about the two clashing again and again on their destriers, but when he arrived on the scene, Rhaegar was dead already. The HotU vision shows Rhaegar sinking to his knees, though, as if he was fighting on foot. It's not like the vision is valid like a recording, but there are some possible connections to be made in the light of this quote from Barristan:

A thrum of excitement went through the siege lines when Belwas was seen plodding toward the city, and from the walls and towers of Meereen came shouts and jeers. Oznak zo Pahl mounted up again, and waited, his striped lance held upright. The charger tossed his head impatiently and pawed the sandy earth. As massive as he was, the eunuch looked small beside the hero on his horse.

A chivalrous man would dismount,” said Arstan.

So, I think it is well possible that Rhaegar knocked Robert off the saddle first, and then dismounted himself, which was a tactical mistake that cost him his life. It was also something that Robert's ego would want to keep from Ned, which is why we never hear in Ned's PoV.

Curiously, Rhaegar wouldn't even be the first Targaryen to lose his life because of chivalry: Daemon Blackfyre made the same mistake by standing over the injured Gwayne Corbray to make sure no more harm came to him, by which he gave Bloodraven the time to access a vantage point and shower him with arrows. 

 

 

On 7/24/2016 at 7:06 AM, Ygrain said:

Well, I do think that it plays all towards Rhaegar being honourable aka doing what a honourable man was supposed to do when he wanted to do right by his lady, but there is an even better quote for this:

“What did any Targaryen ever know of honor? Go down into your crypt and ask Lyanna about the dragon’s honor!”

“You avenged Lyanna at the Trident,” Ned said, halting beside the king. Promise me, Ned, she had whispered.

Robert claims that Rhaegar acted dishonourably towards Lyanna, to which Ned points out aloud that Robert already took his revenge on Rhaegar, but in his mind the mention of Rhaegar's honour, or lack thereof, evokes a promise to Lyanna. Now, if the promise somehow concerned the supposed dishonour, there is no reason for Ned not to share it with Robert, just like he told him about the promise to bury Lyanna at Winterfell. Therefore, I surmise that the content of the promise was something that Robert couldn't be told, and in the context of Rhaegar's supposed lack of honour, it would be the very opposite of what Robert thinks - that Rhaegar didn't dishonour Lyanna. And that would only mean marriage, because consensual but non-marital sex would still be dishonour to Lyanna. This particular promise would then concern not revealing that Jon is trueborn.

This is awesome. Thanks for putting this together. 

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On 7/24/2016 at 1:53 AM, Ygrain said:

To have something to chew on, I'm throwing in something that hasn't been discussed in a while. Perhaps it might spark some more observations.

“My queen,” the big man said slowly, “all you say is true. But Rhaegar lost on the Trident. He lost the battle, he lost the war, he lost the kingdom, and he lost his life. His blood swirled downriver with the rubies from his breastplate, and Robert the Usurper rode over his corpse to steal the iron Throne. Rhaegar fought valiantly, Rhaegar fought nobly, Rhaegar fought honorably. And Rhaegar died.” 

I find the comment rather interesting because Jorah fought at the Trident, as well, and may have actually seen Rhaegar fighting. The "valiant" part is obvious, I guess, but what prompted him into saying "nobly" and "honorably"? 

There is little that we know about Rhaegar on the Trident, and it concerns only the duel with Robert: they were on horseback, Robert was wounded by Rhaegar (seriously enough to leave the command of the pursuit of the royal forces to Ned) but eventually he was able to smash Rhaegar's chest. Rubies flew away, Rhaegar lay dead in the stream.

The thing is: we don't have a first person account of the duel. Ned talks about the two clashing again and again on their destriers, but when he arrived on the scene, Rhaegar was dead already. The HotU vision shows Rhaegar sinking to his knees, though, as if he was fighting on foot. It's not like the vision is valid like a recording, but there are some possible connections to be made in the light of this quote from Barristan:

A thrum of excitement went through the siege lines when Belwas was seen plodding toward the city, and from the walls and towers of Meereen came shouts and jeers. Oznak zo Pahl mounted up again, and waited, his striped lance held upright. The charger tossed his head impatiently and pawed the sandy earth. As massive as he was, the eunuch looked small beside the hero on his horse.

A chivalrous man would dismount,” said Arstan.

So, I think it is well possible that Rhaegar knocked Robert off the saddle first, and then dismounted himself, which was a tactical mistake that cost him his life. It was also something that Robert's ego would want to keep from Ned, which is why we never hear in Ned's PoV.

Curiously, Rhaegar wouldn't even be the first Targaryen to lose his life because of chivalry: Daemon Blackfyre made the same mistake by standing over the injured Gwayne Corbray to make sure no more harm came to him, by which he gave Bloodraven the time to access a vantage point and shower him with arrows. 

 

The quote from Jorah is not about the manner in which Rhaegar fought one on one against Robert.  It is about the kind of army he led -- free men, sworn to him, rather than men whose loyalty was bought. 

Remember, Jorah and Dany are talking about whether to buy a slave army.  Dany says:  "Viserys would have bought as many Unsullied as he had the coin for.   But you said I was like Rhaegar."  Then:  "Prince Rhaegar led free men into battle, not slaves."  And:  "did they give their lives because the believed in Rhaegar's cause, or because they had been bought and paid for?"  That is when Jorah responds:  "all you say is true.  But Rhaegar lost on the Trident.  He lost the battle, he lost the war, he lost the kingdom, and he lost his life."   

The point here is that Jorah is not telling Dany that Robert won because he fought dirty while Rhaegar practiced chivalry in single combat.  It is to tell her that if she wants to win her father's kingdom back, she needs to put aside her scruples about buying a slave army.  

Also, I disagree about the Barristan quote.  When two fighters engage in a single combat duel and one starts the fight on foot, Barristan thinks the other should not start out on a horse.  But when two fighters go into a battle on horseback and one falls off, the other knight has just won an advantage through strength of arms.  In those circumstances, dismounting would not be chivalry.  It would be foolish.

Besides, a battle is different from a duel.  No-one has suggested that it was unchivalrous for Aegon the Conqueror to ride into battle on a dragon when the opposing Kings were on horses.       

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