hiemal

Cometary Questions: Re-examining the Red Comet

49 posts in this topic

1 minute ago, ravenous reader said:

Does this change our interpretation of Bran's 'coma dream' and what he may have spied behind the 'curtain of light'..? ;)

From Wiktionary:

Etymology

From Old French comete (French: comète), from Latin cometes, from Ancient Greek κομήτης (komḗtēs, longhaired), referring to the tail of a comet, from κόμη (kómē, hair).

Noun

comet (plural comets)

  1. (astronomy) A celestial body consisting mainly of ice, dust and gas in a (usually very eccentric) orbit around the Sun and having a "tail" of matter blown back from it by the solar wind as it approaches the Sun.
  2. A celestial phenomenon with the appearance given by the orbiting celestial body.
  3. Any of several species of hummingbird found in the Andes.

 

And:

Quote

Ned and the girls were eight days gone when Maester Luwin came to her one night in Bran's sickroom, carrying a reading lamp and the books of account. "It is past time that we reviewed the figures, my lady," he said. "You'll want to know how much this royal visit cost us."

Catelyn looked at Bran in his sickbed and brushed his hair back off his forehead. It had grown very long, she realized. She would have to cut it soon. "I have no need to look at figures, Maester Luwin," she told him, never taking her eyes from Bran. "I know what the visit cost us. Take the books away."

"My lady, the king's party had healthy appetites. We must replenish our stores before—"

(Catelyn III, AGOT)

His hair had grown long while he was deep in his comet-dreams...

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11 minutes ago, ravenous reader said:

Does this change our interpretation of Bran's 'coma dream' and what he may have spied behind the 'curtain of light'..? ;)

Interesting and yet that comet has come and gone.  I suspect that what Bran espied extra-atmosphere beyond the curtain of light has something to do with the malevolent presence attempting to break free of it's icy prison. 

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Posted (edited)

On the comet's red color:

What if the red is caused by a magical, inverted version of the Doppler effect, one that causes the comet to glow red when it is inbound and fire is ascendant and blue when it is outbound and ice is rising? There hasn't been a blue comet as of now, but the tie-in with the eye colors of various magical people would be a bonus.

Edited by hiemal

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1 hour ago, The Fattest Leech said:

And the references to a comet being a s a sword, which is always a fun topic https://bobmoler.files.wordpress.com/2013/03/69344main_comet_types-lg.jpg

Cool pictures.  So, the heart of the comet is analogous to the stone in the pommel.

In addition to the sword resemblance, it strikes me that they look like feathered quills.  So, in that case the heart of the comet is analogous to the nib of the pen, in particular the ink with which one writes.  The comet writes its message onto the heavens -- often compared to scratching the face of god -- (and in some cases writes itself onto  the earth when it crashes as meteorite).

19 hours ago, hiemal said:

"Jhogo spied it first. 'There,' he said in a hushed voice. Dany looked and saw it, low and in the east." AGoT

Not being an expert in astronomy, I can't answer to your technical queries.  As I've said before to LmL, 'meteors are not my metier; metaphors, however...'

Symbolically, the reason it has to appear in the east is for the same reason Dany's prophecy has a 'sun' rising in the west in future.  What astronomical explanation do you have for that prophecy, and how might it relate to the comet?

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@ravenous readerDon't forget that Bran isn't alone in the coma dream.  The 3EC is with him showing him what lies beyond the curtain of light.  If the comet is the red sword; that fit's better with Jon than Bran. 

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10 minutes ago, ravenous reader said:

Symbolically, the reason it has to appear in the east is for the same reason Dany's prophecy has a 'sun' rising in the west in future.  What astronomical explanation do you have for that prophecy, and how might it relate to the comet?

A reversal of the planet's magnetic poles? I don't recall any mention of magnets, lodestones, or compasses so I'm not sure what is going on with that anyways...

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16 hours ago, hiemal said:

My most tinfoil-and-spit guess, my stab at Grand Unified Theory of Everything Westeros at this point regarding a (faux)comet:

The "second moon" refers to a Venus analog, the evenstar and the morningstar, the Maiden and the Stranger and the Blood Betrayal; representing the slaying/usurping of the Amethyst Empress by her brother and that this celestial body could thus be a kind of heavenly embodiment of a Persephone/Hades duality governed by a now-irregular orbit and a struggle between Ice and Fire. In re-enactment of the original event, as events below seem to be doing in some regards, perhaps this body has thrown a bit of itself towards the sun?

As for the "comet" being something within the atmosphere- in that case it would serve to reinforce that things are not as they appear? It was just something I felt should be mentioned. GRRM seems to enjoy turning expectations on their heads so I could see him doing that with comets although having them be red herrings would be more economical.

Granted, most of the above tinfoil could as easily fit into a more traditional comet, even and perhaps especially the Tycho Brahe stuff and to an actual second, displaced moon as well. I just like to explore all of the possibilities.

Ah. Very cool. :thumbsup:

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1 hour ago, hiemal said:

On the comet's red color:

What if the red is caused by a magical, inverted version of the Doppler effect, one that causes the comet to glow red when it is inbound and fire is ascendant and blue when it is outbound and ice is rising? There hasn't been a blue comet as of now, but the tie-in with the eye colors of various magical people would be a bonus.

I don't think we need to go for physical explanation. To have the Doppler effect change the perceived color, the comet must move at a significant fraction of the speed of light. Chemical explanations are more likely and in the context of the book, magic one more probable.

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34 minutes ago, hiemal said:

A reversal of the planet's magnetic poles? I don't recall any mention of magnets, lodestones, or compasses so I'm not sure what is going on with that anyways...

Magnetic reversals have occurred several times during geological history. No indications that the sun set or rose at opposite directions have ever been found. It is actually very hard to make it happen.

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38 minutes ago, hiemal said:

A reversal of the planet's magnetic poles? I don't recall any mention of magnets, lodestones, or compasses so I'm not sure what is going on with that anyways...

I think it's possible that the sun running in reverse is a vision going back in time.  We're supposed to get some history of Asshai without Dany actually going there.   So it might be a vision of the past. 

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Posted (edited)

5 hours ago, rotting sea cow said:

Magnetic reversals have occurred several times during geological history. No indications that the sun set or rose at opposite directions have ever been found. It is actually very hard to make it happen.

If the poles reversed, wouldn't east and west switch as well? Anyways, that's not actually my guess as to the prophecy, just my most "scientific" one. It does nothing to explain the rest of the prophecy so it's just a little bit of tinfoil jigsaw with nowhere to fit, most likely.

I do think there is something significant about the absence of magnetic compasses, though. If anything like a pole-flip is involved in the Ice/Fire dynamic it is manifested through an electromagnetic force that has been severely altered by magic. I do believe that natural forces have been subverted but I think electromagnetism might be a little... primal? Lightning seems to function as normal and although no explicit mention is made of static electricity that I can think of (nobody has a cat being rubbed by a balloon for their sigil?) I have no reason to doubt it.

 

Edited by hiemal

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5 hours ago, LynnS said:

I think it's possible that the sun running in reverse is a vision going back in time.  We're supposed to get some history of Asshai without Dany actually going there.   So it might be a vision of the past. 

 I like that one- it has much more explanatory power going for it. I see the whole prophecy/replaying of events as possibly being symptoms of a wound in time trying to close so this is more up my regular alley.

 

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5 hours ago, rotting sea cow said:

I don't think we need to go for physical explanation. To have the Doppler effect change the perceived color, the comet must move at a significant fraction of the speed of light. Chemical explanations are more likely and in the context of the book, magic one more probable.

I agree. I just like to be play around with different ideas. TBH, I hadn't even considered a mutated Doppler effect until this thread.

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Posted (edited)

11 hours ago, Lost Melnibonean said:

Interesting observations. There are some uncanny similarities between Braeh and Tyrion, including Brahe's marriage to a commoner and his resentment of the Danish court for not recognizing his brilliance. 

 

 


I wonder if Tyrion's heterochromia could be a riff on Brahe's parallax and suggest something about Tyrion's ability to discern things?

11 hours ago, Lost Melnibonean said:

 

As to where Venus in the real world would be found in ASOIAF, I submit that Venus does exist in ASOIAF. Several celestial bodies described in ASOIAF mirror our own. The George gives us a little ASOIAF astronomy here...

Jon III, Storm 26

The twelve houses of heaven correspond to the zodiac; the seven wanders correspond to the classical planets of antiquity (i.e., the Sun and Moon and the five planets visible to the naked eye, Mercury, Venus, Mars, Jupiter, and Saturn), and the red wanderer corresponds to Mars. The Moonmaid most likely corresponds to Virgo since there is a whole bunch of astrology mumbo jumbo about when Mars is in Virgo. 

I absolutely agree- the whole Tarth Evenstar and the Dayne Sword of the Morning and a hundred other things. I'm pretty sure that it is associated with the Maiden and I'm basically just floating the idea something happening to the Venus analog could be an alternative to a second moon.

On the seven wanderers- I've been ordering them in the "crystal spheres" model; moon, sun, mercury but I'm not sure on how they relate to the Seven (beyond the Smith). Best guess- Moon=crone, Sun=Mother Mercury=Stranger Venus=Maiden Mars=Smith Jupiter=Warrior Saturn=Father

And how significant do you think it is that Mars is Vulcan here?

Edited by hiemal

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52 minutes ago, hiemal said:

 I like that one- it has much more explanatory power going for it. I see the whole prophecy/replaying of events as possibly being symptoms of a wound in time trying to close so this is more up my regular alley.

 

I'm thinking that what the 3EC showed Bran in the coma dream was the malevalent force that LML, Ravenous Readers and others have been detecting in the text.  I think of it as Martin's version of the Eye of Sauron with Euron as the Mouth of Sauron.  Something so dangerous it is encased in ice and warded against by the curtain of light and the Wall.  It may by the firey greenseer some are trying to pin down.

If Bran could see the Blood-Eye then it stands to reason that Bran was also seen and given a glimpse of the heart of darkness itself.  You just have to look at the Forsaken Chapter in Wow to get an idea of what the heart of darkness is all about.

They have also convinced me that Winterfell is a stone tree but more than that, I think it's the actual seastone chair or throne that only a godly man can sit.  So with Bran as the Drowned God and now the Stark IN Winterfell's weirwood; he is sitting the seastone chair.  I don't think it's a coincidence that the Crown of Winter is iron with 9 spikes hammered into swords; while Euron's sigil also contains a crown of iron with spikes.

And this I think is the mouth of sauron speaking; the Storm God, the first storm that Aeron Damphair recognizes:

Quote

 

A Feast for Crows - The Reaver

A smile played across Euron's blue lips. "I am the storm, my lord. The first storm, and the last. I have taken the Silence on longer voyages than this, and ones far more hazardous. Have you forgotten? I have sailed the Smoking Sea and seen Valyria."

A Feast for Crows - The Iron Captain

"We shall have no king but from the kingsmoot." The Damphair stood. "No godless man—"

"—may sit the Seastone Chair, aye." Euron glanced about the tent. "As it happens I have oft sat upon the Seastone Chair of late. It raises no objections." His smiling eye was glittering. "Who knows more of gods than I? Horse gods and fire gods, gods made of gold with gemstone eyes, gods carved of cedar wood, gods chiseled into mountains, gods of empty air . . . I know them all. I have seen their peoples garland them with flowers, and shed the blood of goats and bulls and children in their names. And I have heard the prayers, in half a hundred tongues. Cure my withered leg, make the maiden love me, grant me a healthy son. Save me, succor me, make me wealthy . . . protect me! Protect me from mine enemies, protect me from the darkness, protect me from the crabs inside my belly, from the horselords, from the slavers, from the sellswords at my door. Protect me from the Silence." He laughed. "Godless? Why, Aeron, I am the godliest man ever to raise sail! You serve one god, Damphair, but I have served ten thousand. From Ib to Asshai, when men see my sails, they pray."

The priest raised a bony finger. "They pray to trees and golden idols and goat-headed abominations. False gods . . ."

"Just so," said Euron, "and for that sin I kill them all. I spill their blood upon the sea and sow their screaming women with my seed. Their little gods cannot stop me, so plainly they are false gods. I am more devout than even you, Aeron. Perhaps it should be you who kneels to me for blessing."

 

Their 'little gods' -  Bran and Jon.  Children in other words.  Euron is planning some great magic; to be reborn as AA.  Which makes me wonder about the true nature of AA. 

   

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@ravenous reader sorry, something is going on with the quoter for me the last 24 hours. 

I will take another look at what I thought before about the curtain of light. I know (I think) we talked about this some months ago but I cannot remember the details. 

Yes to the sword and quill/letter and drawing blood. That's the boy Johann if we think about it. 

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On 17/03/2017 at 2:43 PM, Frey family reunion said:

My guess is something or someone (or a combination thereof) may be drawing the comet towards the planet.  If this is the case, then after it is "seized" and drawn to the planet, the comet would start to orbit the planet, and it's appearances would become more frequent, and the comet would appear larger in the sky after each subsequent appearance.  And if the comet was in fact orbiting the planet than it would in effect become a second moon, since by definition a moon is any natural satellite that orbits the planet.  

My guess is on the next pass, the comet will make landfall, and if it follows the path that it took the last time, then there is the possibility that it could make landfall just beyond the Wall, into the glacial shelf called the Heart of Winter.

As for the magic that could seize a comet and slowly drag it into the planet's orbit, I would expect it would have taken a large scale sacrifice of many mystical bloodlines.  Hmm, perhaps something called the Doom of Valyria?

I've already interpreted the doom of Valyria as a comet landing on the woiaf, a moon was cracked causing a thousand thousand dragons to be released is the imagery of this cataclysm. History repeating has been themed a number of times throughout the books. I like what you've presented here.

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1 hour ago, LynnS said:

I'm thinking that what the 3EC showed Bran in the coma dream was the malevalent force that LML, Ravenous Readers and others have been detecting in the text.  I think of it as Martin's version of the Eye of Sauron with Euron as the Mouth of Sauron.  Something so dangerous it is encased in ice and warded against by the curtain of light and the Wall.  It may by the firey greenseer some are trying to pin down.

 

 

Aha! The aurora borealis! Electromagnetism again.

Spitball: Perhaps it isn't too primal a force to be "hacked". Maybe the Storm God/Great Other is the Gray King who used the megadeaths of the Nagga catastrophe to impose his will and personality upon that force, lightning most definitely included, that I believe the Bloodstone Emperor may have done to become R'hlorr using fire.

 

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