Lord_Pepsi_Cupps

Velaryons are not Valyrian?

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On 8.12.2016 at 2:13 PM, Shadow of Asshai said:

.We had dragonriders from House Velaryon, I think that means they have the blood of Valyria, although that can also be from the times the Velaryons married with the Targaryens, maybe the blood was inherited.

Um, which Velaryons?

Actually, up to 7 Velaryons, specifically from the times married with Targaryens.

Rhaenys the Queen Who Should Have Been, rode Meleys and was born a Targaryen (and was she ever called with her husband´s surname Velaryon?)

Laenor rode Seasmoke and was son of QWSHB

Rhaenyra, the First of Her Name, rode Syrax and was born a Targaryen (and was she ever called with her husband´s surname Velaryon?)

Jacaerys rode Vermax and was named Velaryon, but whether begotten a Velaryon or a Strong was borne by Rhaenyra 

Lucerys rode Arrax and was named Velaryon, but whether begotten a Velaryon or a Strong was borne by Rhaenyra 

Joffrey rode Tyraxes and was named Velaryon, but whether begotten a Velaryon or a Strong was borne by Rhaenyra 

Laena rode Vhagar and was daughter of QWSHB

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My take: Velaryons are Valyrians but not one of the 40 Valyrian dragonlord families.  Like the Celtigars, they were vassals with no dragons of their own; the Velaryons who rode dragons during the Dance had a Targaryen (dragonblood) ancestor.

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1 hour ago, Kathleen The Ruthless said:

My take: Velaryons are Valyrians but not one of the 40 Valyrian dragonlord families.  Like the Celtigars, they were vassals with no dragons of their own; the Velaryons who rode dragons during the Dance had a Targaryen (dragonblood) ancestor.

Definitely the most likely story. From a symbolic standpoint, though... wow. They tell an interesting story. Dragon people who took over an island from fishy open, but then took on the fish symbolism to create a line of sea dragon people. That's actually the story of the Iron Islands I think. 

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7 hours ago, Kathleen The Ruthless said:

My take: Velaryons are Valyrians but not one of the 40 Valyrian dragonlord families.  Like the Celtigars, they were vassals with no dragons of their own; the Velaryons who rode dragons during the Dance had a Targaryen (dragonblood) ancestor.

I thought this was stated somewhere in TWoIaF.  Anyway, I've always assumed this too. 

5 hours ago, LmL said:

Definitely the most likely story. From a symbolic standpoint, though... wow. They tell an interesting story. Dragon people who took over an island from fishy open, but then took on the fish symbolism to create a line of sea dragon people. That's actually the story of the Iron Islands I think. 

I'm looking forward to part 2 of the Grey King series! 

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On 11/4/2016 at 6:13 AM, Lord_Pepsi_Cupps said:

House Velaryon came from Valyria some time before the Targaryens - that's common knowledge.

Surprisingly, for how often the Velaryons come up in discussions here, this thought is uttered only twice in the main books: once by Davos and once by Cersei.

The claim itself isn't really questioned by readership, mainly because the Velaryons clearly LOOK Valyrian. But so do the Daynes, as we've known forever, and possibly the occasional Hightower, as has been more recently discussed.

Then, in TWOIAF, we get this as the clearest indication and confirmation of Valyrian descent, from which all others (there's one more direct one in TWOIAF) can be drawn:

I know I'm turning this seemingly clear confirmation on its head, but I'm curious about the statement that "the histories agree". This then is a matter of historical knowledge, rather than relatively recent-ish memory. Yandel, and presumably everyone else, knows it from histories, and we know how "reliable" those can be. Especially going far back enough.

But this is the real catch:

The Velaryons have been here long enough for a LEGEND to exist, which is in itself a red flag. How reliable are those "histories that agree" about where the Velaryons came from, if we're talking about something this far in the past? The Manderlys came to the North a thousand years ago, and nevertheless those stories are very well and clearly understood - no legends required.

And here we do have a legend, and not just any legend: a Driftwood Throne, a pact, and the Merling King? This is seriously old stuff. It's the kind of story you might expect from some of the First Men families, not a recentish Valyrian arrival, or even an Andal-age family origin story. This "sea-people" imagery is tied most strongly to the Ironborn - it's as old as it gets, especially if you've delved into Ironborn origin myths (cc @LmL).

So I think the Velaryons, with their "Valyrian" looks might be in the same boat as the Daynes and the Hightowers. They are the remnants of the pre-Long Night arrivals from the Golden Empire of the Dawn (or the ancient Ashai'i, "the people so old they had no name"), the original purple-eyed folk. 

The Valyrian Velaryons story is the result of confusion (because there was a Valyrian family that came over and settled thereabouts), assumption (look at them! and that name! it's obvious!) and possibly also trickery.

The Daynes are secretive, the Hightowers are said to be "subtle and sophisticated" - there is a theme here for these houses to muddy their origins. So would the Velaryons have welcomed the "yeah we came from Valyria too!" spin, to help conceal something older? Their words are "The Old, the True, the Brave".

Anyway. J'accuse!

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And here we do have a legend, and not just any legend: a Driftwood Throne, a pact, and the Merling King? This is seriously old stuff.

Well, the Pact of Ice and Fire was a marriage pact between Velaryon/Targaryen and Stark.  The pact with the Merling King could have involved a marriage with the native family already ruling Driftmark.  Since the pact (supposedly) involves the Merling King directly, I wonder if that family didn't claim relation to him, like the Baratheons claim relation to gods via Elenei.  (Side note: Wasn't Elenei's father the Merling King?)  If such a marriage pact occurred, the legend behind the Driftwood Throne might have been "borrowed" by the Velaryons from the family they married into.  Or religion might have been involved; the Merling King is worshipped by sailors.  Perhaps the arrival of the Velaryons on Driftmark was seen as some sort of fulfilment of prophecy. 

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 This "sea-people" imagery is tied most strongly to the Ironborn - it's as old as it gets, especially if you've delved into Ironborn origin myths

I agree!  In addition to the Ironborn, I think House Velaryon echoes House Stark as well.  The Merling King is a god of death, and seahorses in old European legend were said to carry the souls of sailors to the Underworld.  I believe the pact involved the Velaryons as being some sort of Lord of the Dead figure.  The Velaryons title themselves as Lord of the Tides, and their seat is Driftmark.  (Mark is a suffix on place names that denotes a boundary of some kind.)  The tide represents the waxing and waning of life, and their seat Driftmark sits on this boundary.  More literally, they probably are meant to hold back the Other-like squishers or something similar.  Likewise, the Starks sit on another boundary of the Dead as guardians against the Others, likely part of a deal from a pact with the CotF. (If you want to read more about the Starks as chthonic symbols, I HIGHLY recommend @sweetsunray's thread of the subject. https://sweeticeandfiresunray.com/the-chthonic-cycle/ )

Edited by Isobel Harper
chthonic - I can never spell that word right

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7 hours ago, Isobel Harper said:

Well, the Pact of Ice and Fire was a marriage pact between Velaryon/Targaryen and Stark.  The pact with the Merling King could have involved a marriage with the native family already ruling Driftmark.  Since the pact (supposedly) involves the Merling King directly, I wonder if that family didn't claim relation to him, like the Baratheons claim relation to gods via Elenei.  (Side note: Wasn't Elenei's father the Merling King?)  If such a marriage pact occurred, the legend behind the Driftwood Throne might have been "borrowed" by the Velaryons from the family they married into.  Or religion might have been involved; the Merling King is worshipped by sailors.  Perhaps the arrival of the Velaryons on Driftmark was seen as some sort of fulfilment of prophecy. 

I agree!  In addition to the Ironborn, I think House Velaryon echoes House Stark as well.  The Merling King is a god of death, and seahorses in old European legend were said to carry the souls of sailors to the Underworld.  I believe the pact involved the Velaryons as being some sort of Lord of the Dead figure.  The Velaryons title themselves as Lord of the Tides, and their seat is Driftmark.  (Mark is a suffix on place names that denotes a boundary of some kind.)  The tide represents the waxing and waning of life, and their seat Driftmark sits on this boundary.  More literally, they probably are meant to hold back the Other-like squishers or something similar.  Likewise, the Starks sit on another boundary of the Dead as guardians against the Others, likely part of a deal from a pact with the CotF. (If you want to read more about the Starks as chthonic symbols, I HIGHLY recommend @sweetsunray's thread of the subject. https://sweeticeandfiresunray.com/the-chthonic-cycle/ )

Oh very cool about seahorses! Didn't realize the merman good was an afterlife / lord of the dead figure. Care to drop some examples? :) ?

If you look at a seahorse, you'll notice they look a little dragon like.  They're like scaly snakes with horse heads that swim or something.  The Velaryon sigil on the wiki looks very dragon-like. In other words, these are area dragon ideas, and of course we have Corlys Velaryon who is "The Sea Snake."

As I discussed in my Grey King and the Sea Dragon episode, ships which are owned and operated by Targaryens are also functioning as sees dragon symbols, with the best example being when Dany named three ships after Vhagar, Meraxes, and Balerion and then sat and watched as her dragons took turns causing eclipses and diving into the sea in a demonstration of sea dragon-ness. So Corlys is showing us Sea Dragon symbolism in 3 different ways - his seahorse sigil, is sea snake nickname, and the fact that all he did was sail around in a fleet of sea dragons (boats owned by dragon people).

And where does the Sea Dragon myth come from? The iron Islands. Thus, I would interpret the Sea Dragon symbolism of house velaryon as a clue to indicate that they are house has something to do with the iron Islands. I don't think they literally have anything to do with the iron islands, of course I think they are symbolic parallel. In fact, that's how my discovery process went - I unraveled the Sea Dragon mythology at the iron islands first, and then I noticed all the sea dragon ideas around house Velaryon.  The driftwood throne obviously makes you think of the iron Islands, where the Grey King had a weirwood throne and later kings have driftwood crowns and driftwood cudgels, and that's when I noticed that the Valerian story essentially describes hypothesis I was forming about the ancient iron Islands history anyway... The idea that Dragon people from the great Empire of the Dawn came to the iron islands and interacted with whoever was there... With the Merling King and his Driftwood Throne standing in for the native people of the iron Islands, who either literally descend from fish people or symbolize fish people. So the first Velaryon would be like the Grey King figure, a dragon person who came to the island, conquered, but then took on the trappings of the people who lived there, sitting in their wooden thrones and taking on their fish symbolism. And yes, I agree, it is very like when Orys Baratheon defeated the old Storm King and then became the new storm Lord, taking on all the symbolism of the Storm Kings. I call it the "floppy ears" doctrine. One wants to be king of the rabbits, you best put on your floppy ears.

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25 minutes ago, LmL said:

Oh very cool about seahorses! Didn't realize the merman good was an afterlife / lord of the dead figure. Care to drop some examples? :) ?

 

The Merling King is one of the Death God statues in the HoBaW. 

 Thirty different gods stood along the walls, surrounded by their little lights. The Weeping Woman was the favorite of old women, Arya saw; rich men preferred the Lion of Night, poor men the Hooded Wayfarer. Soldiers lit candles to Bakkalon, the Pale Child, sailors to the Moon-Pale Maiden and the Merling King. The Stranger had his shrine as well, though hardly anyone ever came to him. Most of the time only a single candle stood flickering at his feet. The kindly man said it did not matter. "He has many faces, and many ears to hear."  AFfC, Arya II

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If you look at a seahorse, you'll notice they look a little dragon like.  They're like scaly snakes with horse heads that swim or something.  The Velaryon sigil on the wiki looks very dragon-like. In other words, these are area dragon ideas, and of course we have Corlys Velaryon who is "The Sea Snake."

Very!  My (now) sister-and-law's bachelorette party was held at a paint & pottery shop. In my piece, I stenciled and painted the seahorse that's on the wiki.  Everyone thought it was a dragon.  Haha! 

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As I discussed in my Grey King and the Sea Dragon episode, ships which are owned and operated by Targaryens are also functioning as sees dragon symbols, with the best example being when Dany named three ships after Vhagar, Meraxes, and Balerion and then sat and watched as her dragons took turns causing eclipses and diving into the sea in a demonstration of sea dragon-ness. So Corlys is showing us Sea Dragon symbolism in 3 different ways - his seahorse sigil, is sea snake nickname, and the fact that all he did was sail around in a fleet of sea dragons (boats owned by dragon people).

As I said before, really looking forward to part 2.  While waiting for Winds, I get really into side characters, most recently into the Velaryons.  Speaking of Velaryon ships...  If ships are dragons, and dragons are comets, are ships also comets?  Aurane Waters and those infamous dromonds are currently in the Stepstones, where the Hammer of the Waters took place.  I personally think Aurane's not preventing people from crossing though but helping them, namely the Golden Company.  Perhaps because he's a lord and not a hammer. ;)

 

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Aegon, Visenya & Rhaenys mother was a Velaryon too, and she in turn had a Targaryen mother. It seems to me the two houses had been intermarrying for years. And the fact Daemon Velaryon was Aegon's first master of ships kinda supports the idea that the two houses were close. All of which made me wonder why House Celtigar had never contributed a Targ bride? As they too are supposed to be Valyrian. 

I always assumed Alicent had long pale blonde hair, and blue eyes. But this was I think mostly based upon the mistake of Jaehaerys that she was Saera. 

This and the fact Jorah's wife had been blonde made me think Hightowers are blonde. But Of course we don't actually know that as a fact. 

Interesting ideas about the Islands and proto Velarians and what not. I've been doing some thinking about Tarth, and house Dayne. And TBH I'm kinda thinking that Tarth was their original home, and that Morne became Dayne upon the move to Dorne. Maybe a lingual shift, as Day/ne and morn(ing) are kinda too close to ignore. But it basically came out of the Galladon, Just Maid, Perfect Knight, Dawn sword of the morning, stuff and how that imagary could relate to the western side of the islands house being all Evenstar, Evenfall Hall etc.  And the fact these histories are so old.  I had noted recently as well that Tarth is mountainous. Is marble at all related to volcanic activity? I'm afraid I'm really not a geologist. 

 

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14 hours ago, The Weirwoods Eyes said:

 Is marble at all related to volcanic activity? I'm afraid I'm really not a geologist.

Neither is George, so do not worry much about that. He has never cared much to create a geologically consistent world.

But, afaik, marble is a metamorphic rock. So nothing to do with volcanos.

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1 hour ago, The hairy bear said:

Neither is George, so do not worry much about that. He has never cared much to create a geologically consistent world.

But, afaik, marble is a metamorphic rock. So nothing to do with volcanos.

cheers, and yeah good point. 

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10 hours ago, The hairy bear said:

But, afaik, marble is a metamorphic rock. So nothing to do with volcanos.

Both contact metamorphism and regional metamorphism commonly form marble.

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I think the Velaryons are a Valyrian famliy, but it's possible Driftsmark wasn't unihabited when the Valyrians arrived, and the Velaryons intermarried with the native population and took some of their traditions as their own. We have seen things like this happen in Westerosi history.

Edited by joluoto2

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On 20/12/2016 at 10:47 AM, The hairy bear said:

Neither is George, so do not worry much about that. He has never cared much to create a geologically consistent world.

Actually, upon examining the evidence, it is clear that GRRM took great care to include accurate plate tectonics in his world, complete with volcanoes and plate boundaires. I'm preparing a comprehensive list. As for rock formations, although this isn't my specialism I have seen theories noting how rock types in certain areas are consistent with how we understand them to have formed in our world.

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I think Velaryons came to Driftmark some years before Targaryens left Valyria.They conquered Driftmark, married the daughter of the previous ruler and took their sigil (like Baratheons did with Durrandons). The question is why did the leave Valyria? Why are they so important for Targaryens while other surviving Valyrian houses (like Celtigars or Qoherys).

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So I mentioned above how I've been musing on the idea that the Dayne's are in fact the Morne's and that all was brought about through my noting how Tarth has two castles one on the west coast which has heavy evening associations. Evenfall hall, Evenstar, and a Sun & Moon Sigil.

 And that I think it likely that Nightfall the VS sword was their sword.  The story of it coming from a dead Corsair works too, as a channel island Tarth would be frequently subjected to having to deal with Corsairs and the idea that the sword could be lost to one during such a skirmish is plausible. 

And the East side castle is named Morne. aka Morning. And that the legendary "knight" from there is a Gallahad figure just as Brienne is and carried a legendary sword.  And just as Arthur Dayne is, who also carried a legendary sword. 

The sun sets in the west and rises in the east. And I'll remind you again of the Sun & Moon sigil of House Tarth. 

Now Dayne is so similar to Morne I doubt I have to point out that one, and Dawn is a legendary sword. The name of which works with the sunrise imagery which might be associated with a house on the east coast of Tarth, if we take all those clues to mind. 

Now when I was musing on this idea I wondered if Dawn might turn out to hold a Sunstone in its hilt, just as Nightfall holds a Moonstone.  And I looked up any and all descriptions of the sword. We never get told though if it holds a stone. But Jon describes the Sword of the Morning Constellation and tells is it is sword shaped and that the star in the hilt shines brightly like a diamond.  So I think this is a hint that Dawn does hold a Gem in its hilt. 

Now if the Dayne's are proto Valyrians might the Stone in Dawn's hilt be a Sunstone? which are clear like Diamond and which the Vikings used for navigation in open sea. Which was how they got to the americas. Might the Dayne's have used that Sunstone to navigate to Westeros? And then placed it in

I think it interesting how we have several islands on the south-east coast of Westeros, and that three are known to have Valyrians on them, pre-conquest. Tarth is the next southerly island after Driftmark.  And the Dayne's live on an Island too. 

My proposal was that the Morne's left Tarth after the Stormlords won, and married the Tarth daughter. And went to find a new island home, that a language translation is a simple explanation for the name change from Morne to Dayne, and that Dawn is Just Maid, which has just been given an Adalasised twist through the usual methods we see in real world histories when traditions of one faith are given a new gloss by the next one. Such as the easter egg, which Christians claim is the stone of Christs tomb, and is one of the most laughable examples of Christianity adopting pagan symbolism I can think of.

Even Starfall is reminiscent of Evenfall hall. And I wonder if the castle just took their old ones name, and Tarth was the site of the fallen star they followed. (using that Sunstone) Or if the Morne castle had a daybreak kinda name and Starfall is indeed named for the following of a falling star, a fallen Evenstar maybe? As I do wonder if the two houses were in fact one and that they just held castles at both sides because there is some office involved in that. After the Stormkings beat them it is possible the old (fallen) Evenstar or his Morne side of the islands equivalent is who was being followed and set up home on the island in Dorne, which is where Starfall got built.

Both families also have a hereditary title related to the morning and evening after all, and the Evenstar is duel too, as Venus is seen both in the Morning and the evening. It is both the Morning Star & the Evening Star. 

 

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We are aware the Velaryons are an old and storied house that was deemed fit to provide intermarriages to the Targaryen dynasty.  Although they were not dragonlords at the beginning of conquest, we do know this is a well-known seafaring house, bonded to the sea.   Now I have seen the discussion regarding the Velaryons and the Merling King legend and found many who disregard this legend as “it must be some OTHER noble house’s legend, because it can’t be theirs” and frankly, I find this to be the most speculative argument, especially when we also see tales of a Valyrian type seafaring people off the Coast of the Whispering sound.

Do I think the Velaryons are not really Valyrian? Well, no and I don’t see evidence to suggest that.  The Velaryons are Valyrian.  However, OP I smell what you are stepping in and feel you have some good points, and yes, I see the red flag.  I feel the fact that the Velaryon’s name might in fact speak to how ancient their lineage is.  I believe there is even a slight possibility the word "Valyrian" could even be derived from this house and not the other way around. The books mention the house while using descriptions such as “old, ancient, storied”.  So yeah, I’ll bite that they are old, ancient and storied.  I will also agree that the Targaryens preferred to intermarry with the Velaryons.  This is notable because the Targaryens are very keen to preserving bloodlines.  In addition to their ancient line, Velaryons have been providing spouses for the Targaryens even prior to Aegon’s conquest.  It seems if all they need is another Valyrian, the Targaryens could have intermarried with the Valyrian’s of House Celtigar at least once; however, this was not the case. 

I believe LMLs supposition that the Merling King being a variation of the Drowned God / Grey King hit the nail on the head.  In fact, I believe the Merling King is, in fact the Drowned God.  When it comes down to the evidence I have seen, I believe the pact is actually a pact between the Velaryons (possibly still proto-valyrian at this point) and the Ironborn.  The driftwood throne is the fabled Ironborn throne that the Grey King sat, made from “Nagga’s jaws” (aka driftwood from a weirwood ship).  This is similar to the driftwood crown the grey king wore that was supposedly made from Nagga’s teeth. 

Here are some Merling King/Iron born connections, and then we are going to play a little game:

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These Deep Ones, as he names them, are the seed from which our legends of merlings have grown, he argues, whilst their terrible fathers are the truth behind the Drowned God of the ironborn.

 

“A trumpet blew. That’s wrong, she thought. There are no trumpets in the Drowned God’s watery halls. Below the waves the merlings hail their lord by blowing into seashells.”

 

“My brother Balon made us great again, which earned the Storm God’s wrath. He feasts now in the Drowned God’s watery halls, with mermaids to attend his every want.

 

Now lets do a little exercise and replace the words merlings with Ironborn:

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OWEN OAKENSHIELD, who conquered the Shield Islands, driving the selkies and merlings Ironborn back into the sea.

Well that sounds a little more reasonable, doesn’t it?  I fact, the Ironborn are notorious for raiding the shield islands.  Just take a look:

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“How splendid.” She took his hands and kissed him on the cheeks. “I know Tommen will be pleased as well. This will mean that we can release Lord Redwyne’s fleet, and drive the ironmen from the Shields.”. […] And now there were reports that this madman who called himself Euron Crow’s Eye was even sending longships up Whispering Sound toward Oldtown.

 

“Rocks?” gasped Margaery. “Did Your Grace say rocks?” The Knight of Flowers put a hand upon his sister’s shoulder. “If it please Your Grace, from those rocks the ironmen threaten Oldtown and the Arbor. From strongholds on the Shields, raiders can sail up the Mander into the very heart of the Reach, as they did of old. With enough men they might even threaten Highgarden.”

 

Many of these monarchs shared a common foe, for during these dark and bloody centuries, seaborne reavers from the Iron Islands dominated almost all of the western shore, from Bear Island to the Arbor. […] Having established themselves upon the Shield Islands by killing all the men they found there and claiming the women as their own, the ironborn even raided up the Mander with impunity.

 

The ironborn sank some fishing boats and captured a few fat merchantmen, burned some villages and sacked a few small towns. But at the mouth of the Mander, they met unexpected resistance.

 

Greatest of all the Gardeners was King Garth VII, the Goldenhand, a giant in both war and peace. As a boy, he turned back the Dornish when King Ferris Fowler led ten thousand men through the Wide Way (as the Prince’s Pass was then called), intent on conquest. Soon after, he turned his attention to the sea and drove the last ironmen from their strongholds on the Shield Islands. Thereafter he resettled the islands with his fiercest fighters, granting them special dispensations for the purpose of turning them into a first defense against the ironborn, should they return.

 

So yeah, Oakenshield ejected the Ironborn from the reach… It makes sense. Lets try this one:

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The first Ser Artys Arryn supposedly rode upon a huge falcon (possibly a distorted memory of dragonriders seen from afar, Archmaester Perestan suggests). Armies of eagles fought at his command. To win the Vale, he flew to the top of the Giant’s Lance and slew the Griffin King.  He counted giants and merlings Ironborn amongst his friends, and wed a woman of the children of the forest, though she died giving birth to his son. […] the Winged Knight is made of legend, not of flesh and blood. If such a hero ever walked the Mountains and Vale, far back in the dim mists of the Dawn Age, his name was certainly not Artys Arryn, for the Arryns came from pure Andal stock, and this Winged Knight lived and flew and fought many thousands of years before the first Andals came to Westeros.

So here we have what is probably a legend of a proto-valyrian dragonlord who was friends with the Ironborn.

How about this one:

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The knight wore silver armor, his greaves and gauntlet inlaid with niello to suggest flowing fronds of seaweed. The helm beneath his arm was the head of the merling Ironborn king, with a crown of mother-of-pearl and a jutting beard of jet and jade. His own beard was as grey as the winter sea. Davos rose. “May I know your name, ser?” “Ser Marlon Manderly.” He was a head taller than Davos and three stones heavier, with slate-grey eyes and a haughty way of speaking. “I have the honor to be Lord Wyman’s cousin and commander of his garrison. Follow me.”

For those who don’t see the connection, take a look at the description.

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The Grey King ruled the sea itself and took a mermaid to wife […] His hair and beard and eyes were as grey as a winter sea, and from these he took his name.

 

Okay, now take a look at this

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Scholars still debate the purpose of these mazes. Were they fortifications, temples, towns? Or did they serve some other, stranger purpose? The mazemakers left no written records, so we shall never know. Their bones tell us that they were massively built and larger than men, though not so large as giants. Some have suggested that mayhaps the mazemakers were born of interbreeding between human men and giant women. We do not known why they disappeared, though Lorathi legend suggests they were destroyed by an enemy from the sea: merlings in some versions of the tale, selkies and walrus-men in others.  Ironborn.

So, say the people who made the mazes in Lorath also made the maze at the base of the Hightower on Battle isle.  If we can assume this is the case, then we can assume the Ironborn played a part in the “battle” for Battle isle.
In fact dragons had roosted on

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“Battle Isle until the first Hightower put an end to them. Many smallfolk believe the Hightower itself simply appeared one day. The full and true history of the founding of Oldtown will likely never be known. We can state with certainty, however, that men have lived at the mouth of the Honeywine since the Dawn Age. The oldest runic records confirm this, as do certain fragmentary accounts that have come down to us from maesters who lived amongst the children of the forest. One such, Maester Jellicoe, suggests that the settlement at the top of Whispering Sound began as a trading post, where ships from Valyria, Old Ghis, and the Summer Isles put in to replenish their provisions, make repairs, and barter with the elder races, and that seems as likely a supposition as any."

 

"at some point we know that Battle Isle and its great stronghold came into the possession of the ancestors of House Hightower. Were they First Men, as most scholars believe today? Or did they mayhaps descend from the seafarers and traders who had settled at the top of Whispering Sound in earlier epochs, the men who came before the First Men? We cannot know."

 

 

So here is what gets everybody.  They see Baelish and they see the name of the ship and they think he is somehow connected to merlings.  No.  This is not the case.  This is not his ship.  This would be the same as saying Sam was somehow connected to the Spice Girls because he sailed on the Cinnamon Wind.  No the Merling King is introduced when They discuss allying with the Ironborn and instead use a Velaryon Bastard.  The Velaryon bastard later defies the iron throne and takes the ships without helping the throne.  Later mentions of the Merling king ship are laiden with mentions of storms and drowning.

Quote

“How soon might you leave?” “On the morrow, if the winds permit. There’s a Braavosi galley standing out past the chain, taking on cargo by boat. The Merling  Ironborn King. I’ll see her captain about a berth.” “You will miss the king’s wedding,” said Mace Tyrell. Petyr Baelish gave a shrug. “Tides and brides wait on no man, my lord. Once the autumn storms begin the voyage will be much more hazardous. Drowning would definitely diminish my charms as a bridegroom.” Lord Tyrell chuckled. “True. Best you do not linger.” “May the gods speed you on your way,” the High Septon said. “All King’s Landing shall pray for your success.” Lord Redwyne pinched at his nose. “May we return to the matter of the Greyjoy alliance? In my view, there is much to be said for it. Greyjoy’s longships will augment my own fleet and give us sufficient strength at sea to assault Dragonstone and end Stannis Baratheon’s pretensions.” “King Balon’s longships are occupied for the nonce,” Lord Tywin said politely, “as are we. Greyjoy demands half the kingdom as the price of alliance, but what will he do to earn it? Fight the Starks? He is doing that already. Why should we pay for what he has given us for free? The best thing to do about our lord of Pyke is nothing, in my view. Granted enough time, a better option may well present itself. One that does not require the king to give up half his kingdom.” Tyrion watched his father closely. There’s something he’s not saying. He remembered those important letters Lord Tywin had been writing, the night Tyrion had demanded Casterly Rock. What was it he said? Some battles are won with swords and spears, others with quills and ravens … He wondered who the “better option” was, and what sort of price he was demanding.

Also of note, the dance of dragons is said to be a parallel to the Amethyst empress, and in the Dance, the Ironborn side with the Velaryon fleets even though the Ironborn were courted by the Greens.

 

I have quite a bit more info, but will leave this here.  So anyway OP, I think you are on to something.  My take is that the Velaryons do have dawn age connections, but left Westeros to settle Valyria with other proto-valyrians.  It is implied the Targs have blood ties to dawn age occurrences and are still Valyrian, I believe House Velaryon does as well. 

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Their name itself seems somewhat lazy in a meta sense, but going by your theory ... maybe it's on purpose? If they are some remnant of envoys from the Great Empire of The Dawn then at some point someone must have said "you look Valyrian" in fact a lot people must have said it and they just took it as their name, seemingly somewhat phonetically. Maybe the original Velaryon's in Westeros (if they were descendants of the Great Empire) had no surname in the first place and decided to adopt one when they came into power.

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