DominusNovus

Would the Blackfyres have been better?

41 posts in this topic

Looking over the family tree of the Blackfyres, I couldn't help but notice that, despite Daemon have a buttload of sons and daughters, we have no evidence of any sibling-marriages in the house.  The closest to incest the Blackfyres got, as far as I can tell (beyond, of course, Daemon's own conception) is the marriage of Calla to her half-uncle Aegor, but that's nothing in Targaryen terms.  

If the Blackfyres had, at some point, managed to claim the throne, is it not likely that they would have been far less prone to the Targaryen coin flip?  I doubt they would try to re-create the Targaryen tradition of incestual marriage, as their dynasty would be weak, and they'd need the support of the Faith, and, with so many possible eligible Blackfyres, they'd likely be marrying into as many houses as possible.

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Well, in their defense, the oldest Blackfyre sons, Aegon and Aemon, were twelve-years-old when the First Blackfyre Rebellion happened and they both died in battle and the second oldest son, Daemon II, was only around ten or nine-years-old during the Blackfyre Rebellion.

We don't know precisely how old Daemon I's other sons were, but they were all born after 189AC (the approximate year of Daemon II's birth) and since we don't know how many daughters Daemon I's had we have no idea of knowing if they did commit incest or not.

Personally, I think the Blackfyre's would've continued the incest; after the dragons died out, incest in order to keep their looks was the defining thing for the Targaryens and since Daemon was a Targaryen on both his father's side and his mother's side and was seemingly in love with his half-sister, Daenerys, I believe he would've made his children continue the incest. It is what sets them apart from everyone else.

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Well, Aegon and Aemon died at 11 or 12, Daemon Jr. was gay and never married, Aenys showed up for the Great Council unmarried… Haegon is the only one we know of who married at all, so, despite that buttload of children, you're actually talking a sample size of one. And one of the few other Blackfyre marriages we know about is Daemon's daughter Calla being betrothed to her bastard uncle Aegor.

Meanwhile, the best way to solidify a win based on a disputed claim is usually to marry the best female heir from the other side. Like, most famously, Henry Tudor marrying Elizabeth of York. And that would be even more true if they'd won by, say, the GC of 233 electing Aenys instead of executing him.

Finally, does Maelys the Monstrous seem like good evidence that the Blackfyres were a safer bet for avoiding mad or cruel kings?

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Frankly, we'll never know if the Blackfyres would have been better. They never got the chance to prove themselves as rulers. I honestly think Aenys might have been a good ruler, based on what little we know of him, but on the other hand we have Maelys and Daemon II.

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I don't think they would have been better or worse than the Targaryens or Baratheons. Some Blackfyre kings would be fools, some wicked and some good. The longer time period we speak about the more things would likely have evened themselves out. Hell, in a hundred years after Daemon I Blackfyre became king there would probably be no difference at all for 99,99% of the population compared to if they had been ruled by Targaryen kings.

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It's possible Daemon Targaryen had "blood of the dragon" through his mother Daena, which means his line could have been even more susceptible to both the powers and afflictions that came with it, during a time when the main line of House Targaryen seems to have mostly bred them out.

At this point I wonder if the people with "blood of the dragon" have some sort of enhanced attraction for each other - there are just so many instances where when you track down somebody who might have had it, there was some weird thing with other relatives who also might have had it.

Like Daemon Blackfyre and the first Princess Daenerys..

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On 9/11/2017 at 2:09 PM, DominusNovus said:

Looking over the family tree of the Blackfyres, I couldn't help but notice that, despite Daemon have a buttload of sons and daughters, we have no evidence of any sibling-marriages in the house.  The closest to incest the Blackfyres got, as far as I can tell (beyond, of course, Daemon's own conception) is the marriage of Calla to her half-uncle Aegor, but that's nothing in Targaryen terms.  

If the Blackfyres had, at some point, managed to claim the throne, is it not likely that they would have been far less prone to the Targaryen coin flip?  I doubt they would try to re-create the Targaryen tradition of incestual marriage, as their dynasty would be weak, and they'd need the support of the Faith, and, with so many possible eligible Blackfyres, they'd likely be marrying into as many houses as possible.

If the bastardfyres took the the throne at some point there would have to be enough incest to drive the king mad so the story would continue as written, rebellion and all 

 

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1 hour ago, Dorian Martell's son said:

If the bastardfyres took the the throne at some point there would have to be enough incest to drive the king mad so the story would continue as written, rebellion and all 

 

What do you base this on?

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I'm pretty confident that it is going to turn out that Haegon Blackfyre married one of his sisters (not Calla, though) and I'd be very surprised if it didn't turn out that Daemon III was married to a daughter by Bittersteel and Calla.

Aenys Blackfyre and the two younger sons all may have been married, too. It is essentially confirmed that there were two other male branches of House Blackfyre aside from Haegon's - Maelys is from the most junior branch, and his cousin Daemon from a more senior branch. But we know that Daemon (IV) wasn't a younger brother of Daemon III due to his name.

So Daemon (IV) might be a son of Aenys or the sixth son, and Maelys would be either the son of the sixth son or the son of the seventh son.

That is - if we assume Daemon (IV) and Maelys are also grandsons of Daemon Blackfyre. If they are great-grandsons all bets are off, really. Then they could both be descendants of Haegon Blackfyre.

As for potential brides for Aenys and the younger sons - they could have married Tyroshi women, they could have married sisters, or they could have married daughters of Calla and Aegor. They could even have married daughters of Haegon depending when exactly he married and had children. We just don't know. But chances are not that bad that the Blackfyres felt they had to marry their own to preserve their Valyrian looks and ensure that their blood remained pure enough to convince the Westerosi that their claim to the Iron Throne was not weakened.

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4 hours ago, DominusNovus said:

What do you base this on?

The fictional story that we all love. It was written very specifically, with a mad king triggering a civil war that kills him. Without that, there is no reason for whole swaths of the story. So unless you want to rewrite  the work of someone who loathes/hates/abhors fan fiction, making a change and making it work with the story as written is the only way to go. 

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1 hour ago, Dorian Martell's son said:

The fictional story that we all love. It was written very specifically, with a mad king triggering a civil war that kills him. Without that, there is no reason for whole swaths of the story. So unless you want to rewrite  the work of someone who loathes/hates/abhors fan fiction, making a change and making it work with the story as written is the only way to go. 

Okay, so you're not basing it on any textual evidence, just the story arc.  Your answer is completely useless, then, to be blunt.

Regardless of GRRM's opinion on fan fiction (for which I could not care less), the whole point of questioning the 'what if's is not just for the sake of researching fan fiction, but also to better analyze the text.  If we treat the characters as actual people and not just instruments of a plotline, we can hopefully gain a better appreciation for their motivations.

So, by analyzing the potential of the Blackfyres as a dynasty in a hypothetical situation (particularly when comparing the known members of the dynasty to their Targaryen contemporaries), we can better understand the motivations of their supporters and detractors.  Just as one example.

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58 minutes ago, DominusNovus said:

Okay, so you're not basing it on any textual evidence, just the story arc.  Your answer is completely useless, then, to be blunt.

The Story is all the textual evidence needed. For the story to even happen there has to be a mad king and his actions dramatically change the face of the continent the story is primarily set in. Look at it this way. All targs, even the great bastards were so inbred that madness in a given more than it is not. so even if the spawn of Daemon marry back into the family, they still have the problem of generations of sister/brother humping that pollutes the bloodline. so no, it isn't useless, you are just unable to get past your fan fic and and actually see the story as someone else's creative work, to be blunt. 

1 hour ago, DominusNovus said:

Regardless of GRRM's opinion on fan fiction (for which I could not care less), the whole point of questioning the 'what if's is not just for the sake of researching fan fiction, but also to better analyze the text.  If we treat the characters as actual people and not just instruments of a plotline, we can hopefully gain a better appreciation for their motivations.

These aren't real people. They are characters written by one person with specific ideas of what happens to them to forward a story. They have no free will or agency. So no, treating them as people does not help better analyze the text.  Treating them as people only serves fan fic 

16 hours ago, DominusNovus said:

So, by analyzing the potential of the Blackfyres as a dynasty in a hypothetical situation (particularly when comparing the known members of the dynasty to their Targaryen contemporaries), we can better understand the motivations of their supporters and detractors.  Just as one example.

Either way, the story is already written, so any speculation means nothing unless it is how to make said speculation work within the established story 

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1 hour ago, Dorian Martell's son said:

The Story is all the textual evidence needed. For the story to even happen there has to be a mad king and his actions dramatically change the face of the continent the story is primarily set in. Look at it this way. All targs, even the great bastards were so inbred that madness in a given more than it is not. so even if the spawn of Daemon marry back into the family, they still have the problem of generations of sister/brother humping that pollutes the bloodline. so no, it isn't useless, you are just unable to get past your fan fic and and actually see the story as someone else's creative work, to be blunt. 

Thats not how inbreeding works, either in reality or in ASOIAF.  Continued inbreeding is necessary to maintain the whole "coin flip" genius/madness and magic and all that goes with it.  If it wasn't, then Houses Baratheon, Plumm, Penrose, Martell, Longwaters, Valeryon would be just as prone to genius and madness as the Targaryens.  They all have direct Targaryen ancesters, who themselves have plenty of inbreeding in their family tree, but none of them practiced inbreeding,

1 hour ago, Dorian Martell's son said:

These aren't real people. They are characters written by one person with specific ideas of what happens to them to forward a story. They have no free will or agency. So no, treating them as people does not help better analyze the text.  Treating them as people only serves fan fic 

That is an absurd point to make, and doesn't even address what I said in the section you quote.  I did not say that the characters were real people, but that we learn more by treating them as such.  I think a good example will be my discussion Mance Rayder's plans, if he hadn't lucked out in having the full military might of the North devastated by a southern war (something that was totally out of his control).  By your standard, thats pure fanfic 'what if Mance fought Ned?'  But, we can learn more about Mance, as a character, by exploring the idea.  Feel free to peruse that thread, and you'll see its not just a matter of 'fanfic-ing' a hypothetical battle royale, but exploring Mance's moral character, his stubborness, his pride, his ability to keep the Wildlings together, etc.

Honestly, I respect George as a writer of characters enough to think that, if we treat them as real people in discussions of them, we learn more about the story.  If we analyze Dany's characters, and the reasons for the decisions she made, and didn't make, and how she would have responded to alternative scenarios, we learn more about her, and can make more informed predictions of her ultimate character arc and fate.

But if none of that is good enough for you, lets bring it 'down to earth' so to speak: If, as may believe, fAegon is actualy a Blackfyre, and he's several generations removed from the inbreeding of the Targaryens (to the best of our knowledge), then what sort of baseline can we expect from him, based on his ancestry, in a story where one's lineage tells us far more about a given character than in reality.

Last point: even if this was about fanfic (which it isn't), so what?

Edited by DominusNovus

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22 hours ago, DominusNovus said:

Thats not how inbreeding works, either in reality or in ASOIAF.  Continued inbreeding is necessary to maintain the whole "coin flip" genius/madness and magic and all that goes with it.  If it wasn't, then Houses Baratheon, Plumm, Penrose, Martell, Longwaters, Valeryon would be just as prone to genius and madness as the Targaryens.  They all have direct Targaryen ancesters, who themselves have plenty of inbreeding in their family tree, but none of them practiced inbreeding,

Not true at all. If enough inbreeding has happened in the past, recessive traits are already prominent. Google hemophilia in european royalty.
As for book inbreeding, it seems to have zero negative effects save for a high risk of mental illness. 

22 hours ago, DominusNovus said:

That is an absurd point to make, and doesn't even address what I said in the section you quote.  I did not say that the characters were real people, but that we learn more by treating them as such.  I think a good example will be my discussion Mance Rayder's plans, if he hadn't lucked out in having the full military might of the North devastated by a southern war (something that was totally out of his control).  By your standard, thats pure fanfic 'what if Mance fought Ned?'  But, we can learn more about Mance, as a character, by exploring the idea.  Feel free to peruse that thread, and you'll see its not just a matter of 'fanfic-ing' a hypothetical battle royale, but exploring Mance's moral character, his stubborness, his pride, his ability to keep the Wildlings together, etc.

fictional characters do not have free will. That is the point

22 hours ago, DominusNovus said:

Honestly, I respect George as a writer of characters enough to think that, if we treat them as real people in discussions of them, we learn more about the story.  If we analyze Dany's characters, and the reasons for the decisions she made, and didn't make, and how she would have responded to alternative scenarios, we learn more about her, and can make more informed predictions of her ultimate character arc and fate.

again, fictional characters have no free will. she behaves tha way the man who wrote her wants her to behave. 

22 hours ago, DominusNovus said:

But if none of that is good enough for you, lets bring it 'down to earth' so to speak: If, as may believe, fAegon is actualy a Blackfyre, and he's several generations removed from the inbreeding of the Targaryens (to the best of our knowledge), then what sort of baseline can we expect from him, based on his ancestry, in a story where one's lineage tells us far more about a given character than in reality.

(f)Aegon may or may not be an usurper bastard's kin, but there was so much inter-family sex that (in book) even an addition of dornish blood did not save the dynasty from inbreed madness. There is no reason to believe that any of Daemon's spawn are somehow immune to that 

23 hours ago, DominusNovus said:

Last point: even if this was about fanfic (which it isn't), so what?

The author of the story we love hates it, so, out of respect for an artist and their work, people shouldn't do it. Simple as that 

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1 hour ago, Dorian Martell's son said:

Not true at all. If enough inbreeding has happened in the past, recessive traits are already prominent. Google hemophilia in european royalty.
As for book inbreeding, it seems to have zero negative effects save for a high risk of mental illness. 

Then, again, why do we have no mention of Targaryen madness/greatness in the houses with confirmed Targaryen blood?

1 hour ago, Dorian Martell's son said:

fictional characters do not have free will. That is the point

again, fictional characters have no free will. she behaves tha way the man who wrote her wants her to behave. 

That point is utterly asinine and, as before, misses the point while totally invalidating about 90% of the discussions on here.  If you don't treat the characters as people, then how the hell can you discuss them?  If you don't discuss them as if they have free will, then you can't have the innumerable 'Is character Y morally gray?' conversations.  Nor 'what character Y wrong to do this, or character Z right to do that?'  If we discussed these books as though every character were just a name on a page and not a person, then there would be no point in this forum.

1 hour ago, Dorian Martell's son said:

The author of the story we love hates it, so, out of respect for an artist and their work, people shouldn't do it. Simple as that 

I disagree, but given that this is not the point of the discussion, I'll avoid elaborating on it.

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12 hours ago, Nihlus said:

The best option would be no Valyrians.

Bah. Best option is no Ghiscari.

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20 hours ago, DominusNovus said:

Then, again, why do we have no mention of Targaryen madness/greatness in the houses with confirmed Targaryen blood?

I never said we would. book inbreeding seems to only lead to madness. Not anything else bad. 

21 hours ago, DominusNovus said:

That point is utterly asinine and, as before, misses the point while totally invalidating about 90% of the discussions on here.  If you don't treat the characters as people, then how the hell can you discuss them?  If you don't discuss them as if they have free will, then you can't have the innumerable 'Is character Y morally gray?' conversations.  Nor 'what character Y wrong to do this, or character Z right to do that?'  If we discussed these books as though every character were just a name on a page and not a person, then there would be no point in this forum.

No sir, your inability to discuss literary  characters without out their literal personal agency is asinine. Also, you can have all the conversations you speak of, without speaking of a character's agency and choice, by discussing them as characters in a book and the characters actions in relation to the story. 

21 hours ago, DominusNovus said:

I disagree, but given that this is not the point of the discussion, I'll avoid elaborating on it.

So this is literally the problem here. The author literally said he hates fan fic. There is absolutely no room for disagreement or arguing.

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40 minutes ago, DominusNovus said:

Bah. Best option is no Ghiscari.

No Ghiscari OR Valyrians.

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5 hours ago, Nihlus said:

No Ghiscari OR Valyrians.

Let's just ditch civilization. No Fisher Queens, no Dawn Empire, when the Deep Ones come up to the coastal cities and say "Hey, humans, want some civilization?" just say "No, my mom told me that you always give the first dose for free to get me hooked and then I have to start paying for it. I think I'll stick to hunting and gathering and occasionally getting eaten by tigers, thank you."

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