Rain on Wednesday

War of the Roses (The Cousins' War) Has Predicted How it All Will End

13 posts in this topic

Hello. This is my first post and I'm sure it isn't new, but I couldn't find anything using various synonymous search criteria, so here goes: 

We have had GRRM confirm that the books are very loosely based on multiple historical events, in particular, the English War of the Roses, also known as The Cousins' War. This war divided the royal house of Plantagenet into two dividing factions: Lancaster (the red rose) and York (the white rose). Crimson and White, any one? The war began under King Henry the VI, who was indeed mad, and lost almost all of the English lands in France among other calamities. To right this wrong, his cousin who was also a Plantagenet, Richard of York, and his eldest son seized the regency from King Henry's wife, Maragret of Anjou and was styled for the first time in British history "Protector of the Realm". She (a dead ringer for the way Cersei is betrayed in the books, btw--stupid, power hungry, impulsive, adulterous, had a bastard she tried to pass off as Henry's [most thought so, anyway]...the list goes on) was obviously not competent and had been more responsible for the loss of the lands than her husband--killed both the Lord Protector and his son. She is a mixture of mad King Henry/Aerys and Cersei and is on top for a bit, until Edward of March, the second eldest York son, avenges his dead father and brother along with the help of his brothers George Duke of Clarence and Richard (who would become Richard III). They ousted Lancaster and crowned Edward March, the white rose of York, king by right of blood and conquest. He eventually kills Marget of Anjou's (the She-Wolf of France, there's irony) son, Edward the red rose of Lancaster. His good friend Sir William Hastings helped him win his crown.  

Does this seem familiar? Don't get stuck on the names, rather look at the characters (or this would be exactly like the War of the Roses). Edward rules for about two decades with a rebellion or two or three, but mainly peace, but is a much better warrior than a King. Like Robert. Loves to drink and whore. Like Robert. Dies after fishing...not quite like Robert, who was hunting, but pretty close. When he dies, Sir William means to have his son crowned right away, but is betrayed by Lancaster and loses his head. Lancaster kills the York princes, and brings back the Lancaster heir and exile from across the sea, Henry Tudor, who fights Richard III and wins the crown and marries Princess Elizabeth of York, uniting the houses. Oh, and eventually all three remaining York (cough, Stark, cough) boys die. Since Bran seems transformative and can't have children, I count him among the actual dead of yore. In the show, he is "reborn" as the three eyed raven, so it seems likely to me that he will not win the throne or further the Stark line...but Sansa and Arya will, being the last of the white roses of York, with their brothers and father dead. Just as it was 600 years ago. 

That's pretty much how it went in the very straightforward, notes for dummies way, and I hope that you can see loosely the same themes in ASoIaF. It is very obviously very different but look into the framework and the themes carry. 

Now, what I want to do next is predict the ending of the books using just a few facts that are left out. Obviously, the plot differs on many points but there is the overall account of actions to be taken into account. Lancaster on top, York on top, York almost destroyed, Lancaster on bottom, York is left with only girl progeny, and Lancaster wins and marries the York princess. Work out for yourself who could have been who, no matter what their last names were and ignore the white walkers and the battle of the dawn for a bit.

Now for the interesting bits that may tell us what WILL happen:

Elizabeth of York was in love with her uncle,King Richard III and they were to wed after the battle against Henry Tudor, but obviously the opposite happened. However, this gives some credence to the theory that Daenarys and Jon Snow could wed, especially if you see her as the conquerer coming back home from across the sea, like Henry Tudor (who came from Wales originally, where the sigil is a red dragon). Yes, that mixes up people but not events. So we have two historical precedences that can be fulfilled at once: niece and uncle incest and the conquerer ending the struggle between the house. Margaret of Anjou was destroyed, along with her son and husband, long before this, btw, suggesting that Cersei/Margaret (who is already losing all her children anyway) effectively ends the Lancastrian/Lannister line. We do have one more heir though, Henry Tudor, who would only have inherited crawling over five or six graves and is exiled across the sea...and many have died so far for the Throne. So now even though Daenerys is a Targaryen and not a Lannister, the similarities are very compelling that she will conquer and bring peace by uniting with Jon Snow who turns out to also be a Targaryen so is in fact, royalty, but raised a Stark, so a white rose, like the white rose of York Princess Elizabeth. His last name is Snow, and he is called the white wolf, and as they keep saying--he's prettier than Tormund's daughters, etc. Gender has nothing to do with it if you can stick to the colors/sigils/events. 

Then we have Young Griiff, the Mummer's Dragon. Mummer=actor=Varys. He is an impostor. Why am I sure? Well, we only have like fifteen episodes left on the show and we have no connection to him. Not in Dorne, where they have scrapped Arianne and Quentyn and most everything, not with Tyrion, not with Illyrio, nothing. On the show, Varys is much more open and if he had this up his sleeve at the very least Tyrion would suspect it. We also in the books and in the show have Maester Aemon saying that Daenerys is alone in the world and that is  terrible thing of a Targaryen. Royal rules of birth (just as in the show they have the bedding ceremony, which was in fact used to make sure a royal match or high match was consummated) made the queen's labor a court event, so they can see the baby delivered and NOT switched. Also, how could they find another Targaryen look-a like-in King's Landing in the first place to switch him with? The mother would have stood out. Or I may be missing something. It's hard to care for a character that I don't believe in. 

Now, he could show up next season, and I know the dragon must have three heads but I don't know who they will be; but even then I believe he would be a pretender because after the conclusion of the wars, two very persuasive pretenders came forth to try to re-seize the crown from Henry Tudor. Neither of them have been acknowledged by historians as to having some real claim and neither won the crown. It just didn't happen in any way shape or form, whilst everything else pretty much an amalgamation of what did happen, just with a few name changes/plot twists and no white walkers. 

Note: This is in no way comprehensive!! I am only speaking of the narrowest part of the narrative: who will win the Iron Throne and what the outcome would be if GRRM still sticks to his framework.

I also believe that this proves that Daenerys is the Prince Who Was Promised because historically, Henry Tudor fits that title much better than Jon Snow. Henry Tudor was a prince, sort of, and we know that the word was not gender-specific in the prophesy. 

I also want to restate that if Young Griff was important, we would have seen it in some way on screen by now. I guess we'll know in July. 

I want your thoughts, good people, Does this make sense to anyone but me? Can you winkle out any other predictions I could have missed? It's a huge topic, so I know I must of missed something. Point it out! 

 

 

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The only niggle I have is that there is no historical evidence that Elizabeth of York was in love with Richard III. I know it was rumoured that he intended to marry her after his wife died and that was the reason her mother, Elizabeth Woodville, reached out to Margaret Beaufort for an alliance with the Lancasters/Tudors. Saying that, I agree that a marriage between Daenerys and Jon is a possibility.

I think the only way for Westeros to move forward after everything that has happened is for the two 'warring' houses to unite and work for peace.

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On 4/22/2017 at 4:38 PM, Rain on Wednesday said:

Hello. This is my first post and I'm sure it isn't new, but I couldn't find anything using various synonymous search criteria, so here goes: 

We have had GRRM confirm that the books are very loosely based on multiple historical events, in particular, the English War of the Roses, also known as The Cousins' War.

It may be picking nits, but AFAIK only Philippa Gregory, the author of The White Queen (and the Red Queen, and the White Princess, etc.,) calls it the Cousin's War

On 4/22/2017 at 4:38 PM, Rain on Wednesday said:

<snip>

Does this seem familiar? Don't get stuck on the names, rather look at the characters (or this would be exactly like the War of the Roses). Edward rules for about two decades with a rebellion or two or three, but mainly peace, but is a much better warrior than a King.

While I definitely agree that the brother Baratheon are inspired by the York brothers, and I admire Edward IV, I would not characterize his reign as so tranquil - he was deposed by the Kingmaker in favor of Henry VI in 1470-71, and one assumes the attendant fighting before and after means his reign had a least one significant disturbance. I don't really see the situation as a direct parallel, though: real Edward married Elizabeth Woodville, a beautfiul woman (like Cersei) but one of scandalously low breeding - while the Lannisters are as noble as it gets and even the name is Lancaster-inspired. Yet, if the Baratheons are Yorks, surely the Targaryens are Lancasters - the dynasty they overthrew. I think GRRM is taking themes and characters and remixing them, not copying outright. I do agree, though, that glimpses of destiny can be seen in this.

On 4/22/2017 at 4:38 PM, Rain on Wednesday said:

Now for the interesting bits that may tell us what WILL happen:

Elizabeth of York was in love with her uncle,King Richard III and they were to wed after the battle against Henry Tudor, but obviously the opposite happened.

No, I don't believe that, and since the preponderance of evidence strongly implicates Richard in the murder of the Princes in the Tower, I would be horrified if she did. I don't think the comparison holds.

On 4/22/2017 at 4:38 PM, Rain on Wednesday said:

 

Now, he could show up next season, and I know the dragon must have three heads but I don't know who they will be; but even then I believe he would be a pretender because after the conclusion of the wars, two very persuasive pretenders came forth to try to re-seize the crown from Henry Tudor. Neither of them have been acknowledged by historians as to having some real claim and neither won the crown. It just didn't happen in any way shape or form, whilst everything else pretty much an amalgamation of what did happen, just with a few name changes/plot twists and no white walkers. 

Note: This is in no way comprehensive!! I am only speaking of the narrowest part of the narrative: who will win the Iron Throne and what the outcome would be if GRRM still sticks to his framework.

I also believe that this proves that Daenerys is the Prince Who Was Promised because historically, Henry Tudor fits that title much better than Jon Snow. Henry Tudor was a prince, sort of, and we know that the word was not gender-specific in the prophesy. 

I do like the idea of a gender-swapped Henry & Elizabeth, but I think the big argument against Dany as Tudor is that the Tudor claim was from a bastard lineage. Tudor's mother was a Beaufort, a name given to the bastard children of John of Gaunt (Henry VI's great-grandfather and the Duke of Lancaster) after John married his mistress. The Beauforts were legitimized but variously barred from the succession and demoted in it; Tudor's claim was raised because all the legitimate Lancasters were dead. Interestingly, Henry's paternal grandfather, Owen Tudor, had become the second husband to Queen Catherine of France, wife of Henry V and mother of Henry VI (yes, the same woman from the play), so Edmund and Jasper Tudor were half-brothers to Henry VI on that side as well. This didn't carry any particular rights to the English throne, but the marriage of Tudor and Beaufort is always a fascinating example of the way that nobles would try to consolidate their extended family claims.

Anyways, we have one character in the story who is extremely associated with bastardy and a connection to a dead/dying dynasty - Jon Snow. Dany is legitimate (in fact, she's the most widely acknowledged Targaryen in the series). Plus, Jon is from the North, a region that is similar to Scotland, but in being under-developed and different in culture relative to the rest of the kingdom might have something in common with Wales - famously the origin of the Tudor name and lineage. I suspect the story will likely combine elements of the Wars of the Roses, but not copy them verbatim, any more than Robert, Stannis and Renly are copies of Edward, Richard and George.

 

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I could see someone with a weak and questionable claim getting the throne in the end, like the Tudors ultimately did.

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*pro-Ricardian shrieking here*

The uncle/niece thing was a slur, an accusation of incest to tarnish reputation (oh, hey...). Similarly, I'm far more convinced that Henry Tudor ganked the Princes. Richard didn't need to, he was Lord Protector anyway. And then Titulus Regius made the boys illegitimate, and thus no threat.  The fact Henry Tudor repealed the Act, and refused to allow it to be read or mentioned, whilst enforcing his claim to the Throne by marrying Elizabeth, smells fishy to me. As is the fact that he accused the dead Richard of many awful things (including the incest) but never ever mentioned the Princes. They just vanished.  But Henry had to have known they were dead to make his claim stick. 

If the Lannisters are any family, they are the Woodvilles. The abrupt rise to prominence of this social climbing dynasty pissed off a lot of nobility.  

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I've been thinking about this a lot as well, and I believe that if the War of the Five Kings (or whatever it's called) were looked at six hundred years later, as we look at the Wars of the Roses, Tyrion would probably be portrayed similarly to Richard III. From what I have heard, the king wasn't necessarily a bad man, but was definitely considered ugly, whether or not he had a hunchback, and was judged to be evil by his appearance (sound familiar?). But the most blatant correlation to Tyrion is the story of the princes in the tower. Richard is accused of arranging the deaths of his nephews to seize the throne, just like how Tyrion was accused of poisoning Joffrey for power. Though there are some differences, I believe Tyrion is based on Richard III, and is supposed to show how he might have been wrongly portrayed by history. I mean, history is written by the victors, and imagine if Cersei's faction is victorious, and history books are written about it, would Tyrion's portrayal really be that different to Richard III's?

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I think the author mixed and matched too many elements in the War of the Roses to draw any conclusions.  Edward IV definitely parallels Robert Baratheon, but only so far....Elizabeth Woodville most certainly didn't orchestrate her husbands death because his death basically ruined her life.  Dany doesn't work that well as Henry Tudor because her claim to the throne is very strong, much stronger than his was. 

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On 5/19/2017 at 8:16 AM, PrincessSapphire said:

I've been thinking about this a lot as well, and I believe that if the War of the Five Kings (or whatever it's called) were looked at six hundred years later, as we look at the Wars of the Roses, Tyrion would probably be portrayed similarly to Richard III. From what I have heard, the king wasn't necessarily a bad man, but was definitely considered ugly, whether or not he had a hunchback, and was judged to be evil by his appearance (sound familiar?). But the most blatant correlation to Tyrion is the story of the princes in the tower. Richard is accused of arranging the deaths of his nephews to seize the throne, just like how Tyrion was accused of poisoning Joffrey for power. Though there are some differences, I believe Tyrion is based on Richard III, and is supposed to show how he might have been wrongly portrayed by history. I mean, history is written by the victors, and imagine if Cersei's faction is victorious, and history books are written about it, would Tyrion's portrayal really be that different to Richard III's?

I'm in agreement with this.   My first thought when I read (years ago) that GRRM was using the War of the Roses as inspiration was Tryion=Richard lll.          - iirc things didn't end well for Richard. "A dragon, a dragon,  my kingdom for a dragon! " 

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I also feel that Robb Stark (and also Brandon) has a lot of similarity to the Lancaster boy Henry V and Jon (and Ned) a lot of similarity to John Duke of Bedford (Henry V's brother). Bran and Rickon could also sit in for the other two brothers - Humphrey and Thomas.  

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Posted (edited)

Hi, @Rain on Wednesday and welcome aboard!

edited to add:

Hmm.

As far as I know only one person refers to TWOTR as 

Quote

 The Cousins' War.

That would be Philippa Gregory.

I enjoy some of her books very much, but please be careful of using novels as historical sources.

(end of edit)

I really enjoy reading about the influences of TWOTR on GRRM's saga. 

Here are some links I think you might enjoy:

https://www.theguardian.com/books/2015/may/29/game-of-thrones-war-of-roses-hbo

http://www.allday.com/the-real-war-that-inspired-game-of-thrones-2180778886.html

https://www.quora.com/What-historical-parallels-or-allusions-are-there-in-Game-of-Thrones-Are-there-any-societies-or-countries-or-political-sagas-that-Game-of-Thrones-ASOIAF-is-based-on-or-similar-to#!n=42

This last is from here, in 2007

 

And videos:

http://www.makeuseof.com/tag/youtube-explains-real-history-game-of-thrones/

 

 

Those those moments when you'd prefer the Cracked point of view:

http://www.cracked.com/pictofacts-485-24-insane-ways-game-thrones-based-true-story/

 

I hope you have fun exploring these sources!

Edited by Prof. Cecily
added text at the beginning

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On 6/4/2017 at 2:42 AM, Prof. Cecily said:

Hi, @Rain on Wednesday and welcome aboard!

I know only one person refers to TWOTR as 

That would be Philippa Gregory.

I enjoy some of her books very much, but please be careful of using novels as historical sources.

 

 

 

This ALWAYS pisses me off. You Americans need to go back to World History and seriously rethink things. I haven't responded at all to any of these posts because of this mass delusion--while they were happening, they were called "The Cousins' War". That's what the common people of England called it, and it was retooled into "The War of the Roses" well after everything was settled.

Elizabeth of York wrote a letter, of which we have a copy, begging support to marry King Richard who---guess what, Americans!--was not an ugly hunchback. That was Tudor propaganda courtesy of William Shakespeare. They found his bones and recreated his features. Not a hunchback. There is no evidence to support anyone actually killing the princes--that's why it's still a mystery, but if you actually know your history, I would bet that the Duke of Buckingham was in on it whilst Richard was on progress in the North of England, where people remember him fondly to this day, and would spit in the faces of anyone who said otherwise. 

I really though that people who could get through these books and who would reply to this post would be much more well informed and less prejudiced through the media. It has just stunned me into silence. What a bunch of sophomores. 

If anyone has any actual idea of English history and chooses to speak up, I would gladly hear them....and maybe become less disgusted with these bovine stereotypes. 

 

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OK new member and first time commenting! Anyway, if we really use the War of the Roses as a guide then Daenerys would most likely be Edward of Westminister, the last, exiled member of the Lancastrian dynasty. That would also fit with an attempted Targaryen invasion that ultimately fails. That would leave Jon as the eventual distant, semi-legitmate claimate, who would then marry a Baratheon Princess (likely Shireen) and consolidate the competing claims. But I agree that while GRRM's inspiration for ASOIAF was the Wars of the Roses, it's highly unlikely that we can use the later to predict how the former will end.

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I too am a first poster. TWOTR is very instructive for backgound by GRRM, as he has said. Meaning, I suppose, that there is a lot of mixing and matching of historical reference in his books (eg Late Middle Ages in a blender).

I'll propose my solution (and relevance) to an aftermath of TWOTR, namely of the "Princes in the Tower" with the subsequent pretenders (Lambert Simnel and Perkin Warbeck), which from my (brief) reading of this forum is a very contentious subject - recast as the identity and legitmacy of Aegon VI, who at the end of ADWD has invaded Westeroes. My apologies for what may well be old news..

Aegon VI according to various theories has been single, double, or triple switched during his infantcy. All this, btw, to provide a legitimacy to a (non-Dany, and superior) Targaryeon claim to the Iron Throne. All the while with theorists also positing that the correct identity and legitimacy of "Aegon VI" is not relevant - I agree with this, but for different reasons...

Lambert Simnel was a shallow tool for a Yorkist rebellion. Shortly after Henry VII ("Henry Tudor") beat Richard III at Bosworth Field, Yorkists presented Simnell, as Richard Duke of York (the younger of the two Princes in the Tower), but then, subsequently,  presented him as the young Earl of Warwick (also imprisoned in the Tower?). Whatever... The rebellion was put down, easily.

Perkin Warbeck came into focus a couple of years later. Unlike Simnel, he seemed to have all the looks of a Royal Yorkist (that Simnel (Gendry?) apparently had), but also a fluidity with languages, Royal protocal, a general Royal demeanor and manor and such. In short, he really seemed to be the real deal, and was accepted by significant European Royals as the real deal. And, eventually, accepted by significant Yorkists as being the real deal, the youngist Prince in the Tower, Richard Duke of York, who escaped somehow...

Forgetting the details, but Warbeck/Richard had a disastrous invasion of England, and many of his supporters where tried or were otherwise at great risk as conspirators. Warbeck did two more invasions of England, and ended up surrendering to Henry VII, and was held in honourable captivity for a year or so (odd considering he was asserted as a peasant nothing by the Tudors, and in any event should have been executed for his actions) - he ended up hanged for repeated escape attempts... And, btw, these pretenders were not just a problem for Henry VII to secure his legitimacy in the home front, but the uber-stragic marriage deal for Catheryn of Aragon to Arther, then Henry (later Henry VIII), was held in the balance for several years because of questions about Henry VII's legitmacy.

That said...

From the perspective of the normal book reader, Quentyn and Aegon are introduced in the fifth book! To be fair to the book reading public, these two characters cannot be important (in the end result of the series...) Quentyn did not live through the book. And, Aegon is... a Pretender who will die in some sutable manner per GRRM at some point.

I think Aegon VI is a pretender:
1) as I just mentioned above, you don't introduce a major character so late in the series.
2) if you have a political agenda, and you have a pretender, go for it, legitimacy is generally moot if you win.
3) a great history is by Anne Wroe, with the book, "The Perfect Prince", which does not come to a conlusion about the legitimacy of Perkin Warbeck but does offer the rational (in ASOIAF terms) that a pretender does not have to be legitimate.
4) There is a qoute, somewhere in the canon, that Aegon VI is the "perfect prince", and it is reasonable that GRRM might have read the book.
5) and as an aside, Perkin Warbeck's last invasion of England was in the general vicinity of Lands End, while... Aegon's invasion of Westeros is in the vicinity of Storms End.

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