Stormking902

Is it possible the Lannisters are almost broke?

25 posts in this topic

I know the show and books are completly seperate but I gained even more respect for Tywin Lannister when he informs Cersie that house Lannisters money is basically a house of cards an illusion of sorts to keep there enemys at bay which got me thinking what if the Lannisters are almost broke in the books as well. The only evidence I can think of in the books that the Lannisters still are very rich is Kevin offering to pay off the IT debts but what if doing so completly depleated house Lannisters funds but Kevin sees keeping the Lannisters on the IT more important?. My last point in when your wealthy like billionair status and you lose your wealth you might have millions left but this said millions cant even keep the lights on in your factorys or gas in your jet etc...... eventually you will be broke in the more literal sense. Is Kevin putting the rest of his money on a gamble so to speak. 

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In westerosi society money don't vanish (as it sometimes does nowadays). If the Lannisters absorb the Throne debts the Throne wil owe them. Now, if the throne vanishes, the Lannisters are wrecked as a powerhouse. That's one of the reasons I think they are so bent on keeping it alive, while one of their own sits on it. 

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1 hour ago, King Merrett I Frey said:

In westerosi society money don't vanish (as it sometimes does nowadays). If the Lannisters absorb the Throne debts the Throne wil owe them. Now, if the throne vanishes, the Lannisters are wrecked as a powerhouse. That's one of the reasons I think they are so bent on keeping it alive, while one of their own sits on it. 

High lords become low lords all the time in Westeros its not impossible to believe the Lannisters lost most of their wealth I know CR sits on a gold mine but even a huge gold mine eventually runs out over time which CR has had plenty of. Just splurging on appearance of being rich can lead you to the brink of destruction. Catlyn Starks mothers house that held Harrenhal were considered very wealthy where are they now?? Where is this wealth they posseded?. 

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2 hours ago, Stormking902 said:

High lords become low lords all the time in Westeros its not impossible to believe the Lannisters lost most of their wealth I know CR sits on a gold mine but even a huge gold mine eventually runs out over time which CR has had plenty of. Just splurging on appearance of being rich can lead you to the brink of destruction. Catlyn Starks mothers house that held Harrenhal were considered very wealthy where are they now?? Where is this wealth they posseded?. 

The Whents are indeed a good example of a House that was wealthy and influential and now appears to be on its way to extinction.  That's probably more the curse of Harrenhal, though.  A better example would be the Velaryons, who are very unimportant to the current story but were hugely important once upon a time.  

The difference between these houses and the Lannisters, though, is none of those houses were Lords Paramount.  The Lannisters control the Westerlands, and are owed taxes by all the other Houses in the Westerlands.  They could ultimately fall behind the other 6 Great Houses, but even gross mismanagement (hello, Tytos) wouldn't wreck the finances of the House itself.    

 

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In the epilogue of Dance Kevan says that if he can't figure anything else out he will have to pay the IB with Lannister gold, which Tywin once did for Aerys.  I think they are very far from broke.

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15 minutes ago, aryagonnakill#2 said:

In the epilogue of Dance Kevan says that if he can't figure anything else out he will have to pay the IB with Lannister gold, which Tywin once did for Aerys.  I think they are very far from broke.

Indeed, and we know how close Kevan an Tywin worked together. Even if Tywin was able to hide the truth from Jaime and Cersei, Tyrion would have had some suspicions. There is no textual evidence of it either.

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46 minutes ago, rotting sea cow said:

Indeed, and we know how close Kevan an Tywin worked together. Even if Tywin was able to hide the truth from Jaime and Cersei, Tyrion would have had some suspicions. There is no textual evidence of it either.

This.

 

It's too bad - I also like that plot point and it adds a layer of complexity to the Lannister's royal ambitions. In the books, it seems that House Lannister is still enormously wealthy - even if their mines ran dry years ago, there are other mines in the Westerlands; and between mine taxes and the enormous value of Lannisport I think the Lannister wealth is well-diversified.

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In a medieval setting where the actual currency is gold and there is little development in the economic sector aside from normal banking business there is little chance that anybody can feign to be wealthy. Maintaining castles paying servants and men-at-arms and knights is a costly business, and the Lannisters make a point of wearing the most expensive clothes, armor, weapons, anything. Granted, stuff you own doesn't go away when you lose your income but you will lose the assets to maintain the stuff quickly enough.

Then they would have to sell heirlooms and other fancy stuff which they never do.

The very idea that the Lannisters could be broke is insane, both in the books and the show. The show made a huge point of the wealth of the Lannisters until they no longer did, and unlike in the show the Lannisters are consistently rich in the books.

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There’s certainly no evidence in the books which points to them being broke. However, there are glimpses of them being over-stretched militarily and not having much in the way of friends. Obviously that’s not the same thing, but it’s a general arc I think, where they are heading towards ruin.

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4 hours ago, Shouldve Taken The Black said:

There’s certainly no evidence in the books which points to them being broke. However, there are glimpses of them being over-stretched militarily and not having much in the way of friends. Obviously that’s not the same thing, but it’s a general arc I think, where they are heading towards ruin.

Tywin's death dealt them a huge blow and they have disbanded many of their armies. But they are still rich as hell and thus have still a lot of assets left. The problem they have now is that their official leader is a paranoid woman and the official succession goes through Tommen and Myrcella to other children (Kevan's and Genna's) while the adult male cousins who would be expected to do the work for Cersei and her children might be tempted to demand their spot in the sun now that Tywin and Kevan are both gone.

House Lannister itself might be its greatest enemy. Even more so if Jaime and Cersei ended up on different sides, backing different kings.

And by the way:

The show was done for me when they included that ridiculous concept of the broke Lannisters. I laughed so hard that I literally pissed myself and could never again take the show serious thereafter. That was just ridiculous to the extreme.

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5 hours ago, Shouldve Taken The Black said:

There’s certainly no evidence in the books which points to them being broke. However, there are glimpses of them being over-stretched militarily and not having much in the way of friends. Obviously that’s not the same thing, but it’s a general arc I think, where they are heading towards ruin.

 

That's for sure, but not necessarily financial ruin. Their army in the Riverlands will melt away very soon and Daven will get killed, depriving them of another competent commander. There is probably enough people in the Westerlands to raise another army, but who will do it?

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4 hours ago, rotting sea cow said:

That's for sure, but not necessarily financial ruin. Their army in the Riverlands will melt away very soon and Daven will get killed, depriving them of another competent commander. There is probably enough people in the Westerlands to raise another army, but who will do it?

I think you are making a rather large assumption here.  There does not seem to be any indication that Daven will be killed in the upcoming book, anymore than Stannis will. And I guess there will be a need for fighters in the nearish future (fighting against (f)Aegon or Daenaerys, and perhaps the WW), but do the Lords of the Westerlands know this? No.

I also do not think that we have had a full glimpse of the Westerlands' military commanding capabilities. While Tywin was certainly a good strategist and tactician, he was also the LP and the wealthiest man in Westeros, no one was going to tell him he was not the best man for the job.

Off the top of my head, I think either Strongboar Crakehall or Addam Marbrand would do fine as commanders of the new Westerlands' forces.

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Kev considers paying the Iron Throne's debts with Lannister gold, think that says enough to be honest. 

He wouldn't bankrupt his house to retain the throne, ultimately their overlordship of the Westerlands is more important and he knows it. Not much point being the power behind the throne with nothing to back it up. 

Edited by Trigger Warning

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18 hours ago, Lord Varys said:

Tywin's death dealt them a huge blow and they have disbanded many of their armies. But they are still rich as hell and thus have still a lot of assets left. The problem they have now is that their official leader is a paranoid woman and the official succession goes through Tommen and Myrcella to other children (Kevan's and Genna's) while the adult male cousins who would be expected to do the work for Cersei and her children might be tempted to demand their spot in the sun now that Tywin and Kevan are both gone.

House Lannister itself might be its greatest enemy. Even more so if Jaime and Cersei ended up on different sides, backing different kings.

And by the way:

The show was done for me when they included that ridiculous concept of the broke Lannisters. I laughed so hard that I literally pissed myself and could never again take the show serious thereafter. That was just ridiculous to the extreme.

Yeah, I think clearly succession is the issue, and obviously the limited talents of Cersei and Jaime (although I think underestimating either would be a mistake). Ironically the one Lannister kid who might have actually been able to navigate the family in such a circumstance would be Tyrion in my opinion.

17 hours ago, rotting sea cow said:

That's for sure, but not necessarily financial ruin. Their army in the Riverlands will melt away very soon and Daven will get killed, depriving them of another competent commander. There is probably enough people in the Westerlands to raise another army, but who will do it?

I don’t think they’re financially ruined by any means. There’s another cousin who is castellan at Casterly Rock. Whathisname Lannister who we’ve never met?

What makes you think Daven will die by the way?

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5 minutes ago, Shouldve Taken The Black said:

What makes you think Daven will die by the way?

 

12 hours ago, Raisin' Bran said:

There does not seem to be any indication that Daven will be killed in the upcoming book,

 

Quote

Ser Daven snorted. “I’ll wed and bed my stoat, never fear. I know what happened to Robb Stark...

- Jaime, Feast

There is plenty of groundwork for an insurrection in the Riverlands and a second Red Weeding. Check more about Daven & Jaime dialogue and the rest of Jaime chapters in Feast & Dance. Also

14 hours ago, estermonty python said:

I completely agree that the stage has been set for a rebellion against the Lannister forces in the Riverlands.  Jaime has 3 capable lieutenants: Daven Lannister, Addam Marbrand, and Lyle Crakehall.  All 3 have been separated from one another.  Daven is on his way to Red Wedding 2.0; Marbrand, as you say, is in the same area as Nymeria's pack, and Lyle Crakehall is on his way back to the massive clusterfuck that is Darry, which is both besieged by outlaws and probably being controlled by the Sparrows.

and Jaime himself was captured.

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12 hours ago, Trigger Warning said:

Kev considers paying the Iron Throne's debts with Lannister gold, think that says enough to be honest. 

He wouldn't bankrupt his house to retain the throne, ultimately their overlordship of the Westerlands is more important and he knows it. Not much point being the power behind the throne with nothing to back it up. 

I disagree holding the throne is 10x more important and the Lannisters would still hold the Westerlands broke or not also you have to realise repaying the thrones debt is a LOAN not a gift so there is a win win in keeping the throne and receiving your invest back. 

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4 hours ago, rotting sea cow said:

 

 

- Jaime, Feast

There is plenty of groundwork for an insurrection in the Riverlands and a second Red Weeding. Check more about Daven & Jaime dialogue and the rest of Jaime chapters in Feast & Dance. Also

and Jaime himself was captured.

Right.  And Tom O'Sevens is already part of his retinue, which is a pretty clear signal that they're planning something big.

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12 hours ago, Stormking902 said:

I disagree holding the throne is 10x more important and the Lannisters would still hold the Westerlands broke or not also you have to realise repaying the thrones debt is a LOAN not a gift so there is a win win in keeping the throne and receiving your invest back. 


They won't hold the West for long if they completely bankrupt themselves latching onto a throne that's held by a Baratheon, especially in their current state. Two generations down the line, Tommen's grand kids might not give two shits about House Lannister and instead hold true to their false Baratheon lineage. The West is their power base and worth much more than a tenuous hold over the Iron Throne, Kevan would have to be insane to completely bankrupt his house for the sake of paying off the crown's debts. The Lannister's are ridiculously wealthy, nothing in the text suggests otherwise. If paying off the crown's debts even came close to emptying the Rock's coffers I'm pretty sure Kevan's internal thoughts would make mention of it, it's not an insignificant detail. 

Edited by Trigger Warning

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I forget where but GRRM stated that the Lannister gold mines are only tapped out within the TV series.  I think in a history or even within ASOIAF proper, they mention how there is most likely gold veins that haven't even begun to be tapped yet still within Casterly Rock

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4 hours ago, OberynBlackfyre said:

I forget where but GRRM stated that the Lannister gold mines are only tapped out within the TV series.  I think in a history or even within ASOIAF proper, they mention how there is most likely gold veins that haven't even begun to be tapped yet still within Casterly Rock

As other mentioned, it's not only the gold of CR and accumulated treasure what makes Lannisters very rich. It is also the large tax base of the Westerlands, a rich region in Westeros in its own. 

 

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