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Angel Eyes

Why a betrothal between Sansa and Joffrey?

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Posted (edited)

When Robert came to Winterfell with the intent of appointing Ned Hand of the King, he also wanted to cement an alliance between Houses Stark and Baratheon via marriage. What I'm wondering is: Why did a match between Sansa and Joffrey come up first in the conversation? I know that Sansa had a big crush on Joffrey but that wouldn't have any bearings on a betrothal, would it? There were at least a couple other options:

Robb/Myrcella (Myrcella was smitten with Robb, Robb's the heir to Winterfell)

Arya/Joffrey (God forbid!)

Bran/Myrcella (the two closest in age, he's a second son, she's the second child)

 

Edited by Angel Eyes

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To my knowledge it's as simple as: Joffrey is Robert's first-born male and heir, and thus needs a marriage and eventually heirs of his own to continue the royal family line.

Sansa is Ned's eldest daughter and closest in age to Joffrey, so she's the match. I think her age is the most important factor for pairing her with Joffrey.

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True. Still don't like the fact that Robert didn't give Ned any warning about what a shit Joffrey was. 

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3 hours ago, Angel Eyes said:

True. Still don't like the fact that Robert didn't give Ned any warning about what a shit Joffrey was. 

Joffrey killed some cat and told Bob, but other than that ... I suppose he restrained himself when his father, the King, was nearby. Robert would have caused him a concussion if he tried to have Ser Meryn beat Sansa in public.

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Guess Joffrey was lucky Robert died before he (Joffrey) started abusing Sansa.

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On ‎4‎/‎1‎/‎2017 at 6:18 PM, Angel Eyes said:

Guess Joffrey was lucky Robert died before he (Joffrey) started abusing Sansa.

I don't think that he would have had Robert still been alive.  Joffrey is at heart a coward, he talks a big game but won't really follow through.  BTW as for the marriage, Tyrion remarks at one point that a marriage between the two houses was a good idea on Robert's part.  Robb and Myrcella couldn't really happen because Myrcella is was too young (she's 8) at the time of GoT.  Now true, betrothals in the Middle Ages had happened when people were younger but I think both Ned and Robert were looking for heirs.  Joffrey Arya wasn't a good idea, Sansa and Joffrey were the right ages, it would seal the alliance and for Robert who had wanted to marry Lyanna maybe it held a special bond, his son doing what he couldn't.

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Well, there have been betrothals between much younger people. Look at Tyrek. Then his betrothed becomes the one who was "widowed before she was weaned." 

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Posted (edited)

The reason for the betrothal is very simple. Robert's heir will also need to marry and Robert wants him to marry a girl of a family he knows, trusts, but also will strengthen the 7 kingdoms. Marrying Joffrey to the oldest daughter of the Warden of the North (the biggest of the 7 kingdoms), the man who also happens to be Roberts childhood (and best) friend and that will become the new Hand of the King, is a smart move to make.

As Robert himself says:

Quote

"Come south with me, and I'll teach you how to laugh again," the king promised. "You helped me win this damnable throne, now help me hold it. We were meant to rule together. If Lyanna had lived, we should have been brothers, bound by blood as well as affection. Well, it is not too late. I have a son. You have a daughter. My Joff and your Sansa shall join our houses, as Lyanna and I might once have done."

This offer did surprise him. "Sansa is only eleven."

Robert waved an impatient hand. "Old enough for betrothal. The marriage can wait a few years." The king smiled. "Now stand up and say yes, curse you."

A Game of Thrones - Eddard I

Robert is explaining Eddard that he needs someone like him in kingslanding. Not only as Hand of the King, but also as a friend, someone he can trust. Robert was supposed to become Eddards brother in law, they were meant to become family. Now, Robert wants just that to happen, but not as brothers in law, but as parents in law.

Part of it is nostalgia, part is his memory of Lyanna, but a lot of it really is just politics.

Edited by Ser Walter of AShwood

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Well, as Ned says, "she deserves better than a butcher."

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But of the other possibilities of a match between Houses Stark and Baratheon, what do you guys think?

Robb and Myrcella

Tommen and Sansa

Bran and Myrcella

Tommen and Arya

Rickon and Myrcella 

 

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Joffrey is Robert's heir and oldest son, so he is first priority when it comes to marriage, and Sansa is the obvious choice for him because she's closer in age to him, and more lady-like than Arya.

Robb and Myrcella: I think Robert would be more concerned that his heir can produce an heir before he moves onto Myrcella. True, Ned's first priority would be to have Robb get married and have an heir, but the King's heir is more important than Ned's heir. If Sansa and Joff have already been matched, Robb + Myrcella would be redundant.

Tommen and Sansa: Again, Robert would arrange a marriage for his heir before moving onto his younger son.

Bran and Myrcella: Again, marriage for Joff is more of immediate concern. If Sansa and Joff have already matched, it would be redundant.

Tommen and Arya: see reason for Tommen and Sansa. Also, if Joff and Sansa marry, it would be redundant to have Tommen marry Arya.

Rickon and Myrcella: see reason for Bran and Myrcella.

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Because there had to be something. Tyrion said that Robert had a great idea of uniting Starks and Lannisters through marriage between Joffrey and Sansa and to finally put the old animosity aside. That said, as Catelyn said, these are mighty gifts. This betrothal was supposed to make Sansa a Queen, which would even more elevate the Starks. And with Ned's position as the Hand, Robert would have also been less dependent on Lannisters. The marriage made sense. But life threw some curveballs :D 

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Life drew curveballs. Like Joffrey abusing Sansa. It was a horrible idea from the get-go.

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5 hours ago, Angel Eyes said:

Life drew curveballs. Like Joffrey abusing Sansa. It was a horrible idea from the get-go.

I strongly disagree. From Robert's POV, that was an excellent idea. That said, I find Ned incredibly stupid for not checking who Joffrey really is, before accepting the proposal and taking Sansa to KL (like something Olenna did for Margaery). The idea was bad because it was revealed who JOffrey is, but on the paper, they are perfect couple. 

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Like others said, Joffrey probably restrained himself when Robert was nearby, so Robert didn't know the full extent of Joffrey's horrible nature. 

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29 minutes ago, Ser Meryn Frey said:

What?

Heh, sorry.

"As you know, your father, the king" is a reference to implausible exposition that tells rather than shows. I thought that was why you chose those words.

I found a blog post that explains it a bit more: http://blog.rachelcotterill.com/2010/04/as-you-know-your-father-king.html

And there's a TV Tropes page about the same idea, but it just calls it "As you know": http://tvtropes.org/pmwiki/pmwiki.php/Main/AsYouKnow

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On 9/4/2017 at 11:42 AM, Risto said:

Because there had to be something. Tyrion said that Robert had a great idea of uniting Starks and Lannisters through marriage between Joffrey and Sansa and to finally put the old animosity aside. That said, as Catelyn said, these are mighty gifts. This betrothal was supposed to make Sansa a Queen, which would even more elevate the Starks. And with Ned's position as the Hand, Robert would have also been less dependent on Lannisters. The marriage made sense. But life threw some curveballs :D 

Would Starks want to be elevated? Plus, there are several other options for Joffrey: Margaery Tyrell, Asha Greyjoy, Arya, and Arianne Martell. Could have tried a match between Asha and Joffrey so Balon wouldn't try anything after the Greyjoy Rebellion. And it would be funny seeing how Joffrey would fare with Asha.

Plus, there were other options for Sansa, which I intend to discuss in more detail.

On 9/4/2017 at 7:07 PM, 4 Eyed Crow said:

Like others said, Joffrey probably restrained himself when Robert was nearby, so Robert didn't know the full extent of Joffrey's horrible nature. 

Yeah. Like cutting open a cat.

So as a recap, it wasn't necessarily a bad idea, but Ned was stupid in not observing Joffrey to see how much of a jackass he'd be to Sansa.

Edited by Angel Eyes

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2 hours ago, Angel Eyes said:

Would Starks want to be elevated? Plus, there are several other options for Joffrey: Margaery Tyrell, Asha Greyjoy, Arya, and Arianne Martell. Could have tried a match between Asha and Joffrey so Balon wouldn't try anything after the Greyjoy Rebellion. And it would be funny seeing how Joffrey would fare with Asha.

Plus, there were other options for Sansa, which I intend to discuss in more detail.

It is not how Starks have seen it, but what Robert wanted. Sansa was a beautiful girl of famous name, naturally she was desirable (IS desirable). Marrying her to future King, a Crown Prince, is certainly a high honor, and Robert intended it as such. Sansa makes a perfect sense, due to close age to Joffrey and of course, her noble birth. Women you mentioned are for many reasons unsuitable. Margaery was already intended for Robert, Arianne is 8 years older than Joffrey, Yara is also a bit too old and no family would look kindly on setting aside of eldest daughter. Not to mention that Sansa's beauty and age was appropriate for the position of the Queen.

As for Asha, there was no gain. Simply, Robert crushed Balon's army, so there was no need for political alliance. On the another side, he knew of Ned's dislike towards Lannisters so he was probably trying to unite them. It was actually, as Tyrion said, a good idea. It literally made every sense. Unfortunately, Joffrey's nature destroyed all of that. 

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