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Loren the last

Military strength of minor houses of the Reach

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Every one seems to agree that House Hightower can raise some 10,000 to 20,000 men but we don't know the strength of Houses like Rowan, Tarly, Oakheart, and many more i want to know what you guys would give them based on information from the book like the power our how much land they have

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3 hours ago, Loren the last said:

Every one seems to agree that House Hightower can raise some 10,000 to 20,000 men but we don't know the strength of Houses like Rowan, Tarly, Oakheart, and many more i want to know what you guys would give them based on information from the book like the power our how much land they have

The one quote we have is that House Hightower can raise three times as many men as any other Reach House. So if the Hightowers can raise around 15,000 men, then the likes of Rowan cannot be much higher than the 5000 range or thereabouts.

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This is the "wealth"(from his demesne at least) of Petyr Baelish, the smallest of lords in the Vale, a landed knight in all but title

Quote
"And very well, I'm sure. No one has made off with any of my rocks or sheep pellets, I see that plainly." Petyr gestured toward the fat woman. "Kella minds my vast herds. How many sheep do I have at present, Kella?" 
She had to think a moment. "Three and twenty, m'lord. There was nine and twenty, but Bryen's dogs killed one and we butchered some others and salted down the meat."

 

This is Webbers' wealth, Webber's are "lordlings" 

Quote

"Impossible," declared the young maester by Lady Rohanne's side. "Coldmoat supports twenty times as many smallfolk as does Standfast. Her ladyship has fields of wheat and corn and barley, all dying from the drought. She has half a dozen orchards, apples and apricots and three kinds of pears. She has cows about to calf, five hundred head of black-nosed sheep, and she breeds the finest horses in the Reach. We have a dozen mares about to foal."

 

Ser Eustace Osgrey has three villages, more than one village we see for some other regular landed knights like Cleganes or Baelishs.

He keeps a household guard of 3( 2 if Egg doesn't count)

Rohanne Webber has a household guard of at least 20 knights along with their squires and has at least 20 mounted crossbowmen, likely more as she only takes 6 knights with her of the at least 20.

Eustace had only 8 men between 15 and 50 coming to his summons but there are a lot more than that seeing there are few "grandfathers too old to work" in just the single village we see. Eustace's peasants don't care much about him and he is unable to enforce his will upon them so in ideal circumstances, he would have a lot more men.

Rohanne would have twenty times the men from levy as ser Eustace has, she has her household guard and possibly more professional soldiers in the form of landed knights and their household guards and possibly guards on holdfasts belonging to her.

Again, she is just a small lordling, at the height of their power Osgreys had a score lesser lords and a hundred landed knights sworn to them. So go figure!

 

 

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Posted (edited)

The levy size is a function of both population and wealth. More wealth than population, most likely.

Eustace Osgrey is broke. At the point of extinction, truth be told. His villages are probably barely surviving. Not only would House Webber have 20 times more smallfolk than House Osgrey, but those smallfolk are likely in better shape, and she can likely afford to put a higher percentage of them into the field than House Osgrey can.

So her armed capability is likely closer to 40 times that of House Osgrey, if the quoted description of her holdings compared to that of House Osgrey holds true.

Edited by Free Northman Reborn

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2 hours ago, Free Northman Reborn said:

The levy size is a function of both population and wealth. More wealth than population, most likely.

 

I disagree; if you don't have any peasants, you can't levy them no matter how wealthy you are, on the other hand if you are poor but have the population you can have a sizable levy, it's just that they'll be equipped poorly.

 

However, wealth does affect the quality of your levy and the total number of your troops in the form of mercenaries(Tywin) and household guards(Tarbecks)

 

A poor lord, at times, may also afford to send off more of their peasants, both as a way to reduce the number of mouths come winter and as a way to gain some spoils of war. 

Poorly equipped, but numerous mountain clansmen would be one example and Roddy the Ruin's huge cavalry force of Dustins and maybe Ryswells would be another. In fact Roddy the Ruin is perhaps the best example, never do we see 2000 cavalry for a single lord only(if Ryswells aren't part of it) but they are very poorly equipped (swords of iron seem to be the best weapon they have)

Ironborn would be the ultimate example of the latter, with wildlings also a good example, having so many prominent raiders in such a small population.

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16 minutes ago, Corvo the Crow said:

 

I disagree; if you don't have any peasants, you can't levy them no matter how wealthy you are, on the other hand if you are poor but have the population you can have a sizable levy, it's just that they'll be equipped poorly.

 

However, wealth does affect the quality of your levy and the total number of your troops in the form of mercenaries(Tywin) and household guards(Tarbecks)

 

A poor lord, at times, may also afford to send off more of their peasants, both as a way to reduce the number of mouths come winter and as a way to gain some spoils of war. 

Poorly equipped, but numerous mountain clansmen would be one example and Roddy the Ruin's huge cavalry force of Dustins and maybe Ryswells would be another. In fact Roddy the Ruin is perhaps the best example, never do we see 2000 cavalry for a single lord only(if Ryswells aren't part of it) but they are very poorly equipped (swords of iron seem to be the best weapon they have)

Ironborn would be the ultimate example of the latter, with wildlings also a good example, having so many prominent raiders in such a small population.

This comes back to your misunderstanding (in my opinion) of the ratio of armed forces to total population. Lords don't draft every able bodied man into their armies. They can't afford to do that. Instead, they call up a tiny percentage of their population only. The size of this percentage depends on their wealth.

So not only would Lady Webber have a larger base population (by a factor of 20 we are told), but she could also afford to support a larger percentage of them in the field.

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Posted (edited)

39 minutes ago, Free Northman Reborn said:

This comes back to your misunderstanding (in my opinion) of the ratio of armed forces to total population. Lords don't draft every able bodied man into their armies. They can't afford to do that. Instead, they call up a tiny percentage of their population only. The size of this percentage depends on their wealth.

So not only would Lady Webber have a larger base population (by a factor of 20 we are

told), but she could also afford to support a larger percentage of them in the field.

I don't think it's a misunderstanding on my part but more of poor writing on the author.

 

Lords call all the able-bodied man

Quote

They seemed no more pleased by the sight of Dunk and Egg. Dunk was known in the villages, if only as Ser Eustace's new knight, but not so much as a cup of water was offered him. Most of the men were in the fields, so it was largely women and children who crept out of the hovels at their coming, along with a few grandfathers too infirm for work. Egg bore the Osgrey banner, the chequy lion green and gold, rampant upon its field of white. "We come from Standfast with Ser Eustace's summons," Dunk told the villagers. "Every able-bodied man between the ages of fifteen and fifty is commanded to assemble at the tower on the morrow."

 

Whether they draft them all is another issue.

At least in the north they seem to draft a good chunk of them that crops die in the fields due to lack of men to gather them. Same would apply for Westerlands under Tywin, being down to "sweepings" in his second raise and Westerlings being unable to raise anyone (equipment would be no problem with all those battles won)

Reach is a different case altogether with Garlan and Willas being able to raise another 20000 within a month.

As I said, written somewhat poorly on this part.

 

Edit: Though I must agree that Tywin would also be an example of your case too, very rich lord raising a much bigger portion of his peasants.

Edited by Corvo the Crow

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11 minutes ago, Corvo the Crow said:

I don't think it's a misunderstanding on my part but more of poor writing on the author.

 

Lords call all the able-bodied man

 

Whether they draft them all is another issue.

At least in the north they seem to draft a good chunk of them that crops die in the fields due to lack of men to gather them. Same would apply for Westerlands under Tywin, being down to "sweepings" in his second raise and Westerlings being unable to raise anyone (equipment would be no problem with all those battles won)

Reach is a different case altogether with Garlan and Willas being able to raise another 20000 within a month.

As I said, written somewhat poorly on this part.

 

Edit: Though I must agree that Tywin would also be an example of your case too, very rich lord raising a much bigger portion of his peasants.

Eustace Osgrey has three villages. Say 50 people each. 150 smallfok in total. He ends up mobilizing 8 men, including a lackwit.

That's 5% of his total population, roughly. And that's just assembling them at his keep, a couple of hours walk from their homes. That's not feeding them, equipping them, and marching them even one day into the field. Let alone on a campaign lasting weeks, as any major conflict would require.

So no, he does not raise every able bodied male. Nor does any other lord.

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Ser Eustace did in fact raise every able-bodied men he had — that was the content of his summons. He just had so few peasants in total that there were only 8 able-bodied males among them, including a lackwit. He was desperate for mancount and had no reason to leave anybody behind, plus he was fighting on his own doorstep. This is different from taking men on a long campaign far away and leaving your home turf undefended.

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13 hours ago, newbieone said:

Ser Eustace did in fact raise every able-bodied men he had — that was the content of his summons. He just had so few peasants in total that there were only 8 able-bodied males among them, including a lackwit. He was desperate for mancount and had no reason to leave anybody behind, plus he was fighting on his own doorstep. This is different from taking men on a long campaign far away and leaving your home turf undefended.

No, those were just the men who responded to the summons. Eight men. That equates to less than 3 able bodied men per village.  A single family would have more able bodied men that that, if you count everyone between 15 and 50.

Most likely these were the layabouts who weren't crucial to working the fields, where 90% of peasant males spend the bulk of their time.

 

 

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It is not clear whether the Hightowers can rise the men they can from their own men or by throwing the men of their vassals into the mix. Oldtown alone should enable the Hightowers to marshal thousands (possibly even tens of thousands) of men - and the same goes for Lannisport and KL, by the way. The fact that nobody arms the men living in the large cities to a large extent doesn't mean this isn't doable.

The City Watch of each large city is also a standing force thousands of men strong.

As to the general question, we have no idea how strong the various houses in the Reach are, because we don't know how exactly they are organized. We don't know whether the bulk of the power of, say, the Tarlys or Rowans is controlled directly by them (say, because those men all live on land immediately adjacent to Horn Hill and Goldengrove) or whether they have to go through their vassals to marshal their entire strength.

Overall, there is a difference between your very own men and the men you control only through other men. A difference that is very important in war. The Frey men are technically also Tully men, are they not? Yet they weren't during the War of the Five Kings.

As to the way wealth is measured in Westeros:

It is food and access to food. If you own or control fertile lands you are rich. If you don't own or control fertile land you are poor. A lord controlling fertile land is richer in coin and kind than a lord controlling not-so-fertile land, and unless he is a complete tyrant his peasants and other smallfolk will, on average, be better nourished and equipped than the men of poorer lords. They will also be, on average, better and more powerful fighters.

The West and the Reach are the richest and regions of Westeros both because of the fertility as well as the natural resources found in those regions. The Lannisters are at the very top in this regard because they control the second most fertile land in Westeros which also happens to be full of gold. Gold being as a costly as it is in Martinworld allows the Westermen to buy whatever resources their land doesn't produce - which usually isn't necessary because the West is nearly as fertile as the Reach, anyway.

If there was a drought or bad harvest, etc. in Westeros, most of the surviving food would inevitably find its way in the rich rather than the poor regions because merchants buy and sell food for a profit, not to feed the general population. If I am hungry and you have food I'll get your food unless you are a madman who doesn't understand how basic economy works.

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16 hours ago, Lord Varys said:

It is not clear whether the Hightowers can rise the men they can from their own men or by throwing the men of their vassals into the mix. Oldtown alone should enable the Hightowers to marshal thousands (possibly even tens of thousands) of men - and the same goes for Lannisport and KL, by the way. The fact that nobody arms the men living in the large cities to a large extent doesn't mean this isn't doable.

The City Watch of each large city is also a standing force thousands of men strong.

As to the general question, we have no idea how strong the various houses in the Reach are, because we don't know how exactly they are organized. We don't know whether the bulk of the power of, say, the Tarlys or Rowans is controlled directly by them (say, because those men all live on land immediately adjacent to Horn Hill and Goldengrove) or whether they have to go through their vassals to marshal their entire strength.

Overall, there is a difference between your very own men and the men you control only through other men. A difference that is very important in war. The Frey men are technically also Tully men, are they not? Yet they weren't during the War of the Five Kings.

As to the way wealth is measured in Westeros:

It is food and access to food. If you own or control fertile lands you are rich. If you don't own or control fertile land you are poor. A lord controlling fertile land is richer in coin and kind than a lord controlling not-so-fertile land, and unless he is a complete tyrant his peasants and other smallfolk will, on average, be better nourished and equipped than the men of poorer lords. They will also be, on average, better and more powerful fighters.

The West and the Reach are the richest and regions of Westeros both because of the fertility as well as the natural resources found in those regions. The Lannisters are at the very top in this regard because they control the second most fertile land in Westeros which also happens to be full of gold. Gold being as a costly as it is in Martinworld allows the Westermen to buy whatever resources their land doesn't produce - which usually isn't necessary because the West is nearly as fertile as the Reach, anyway.

If there was a drought or bad harvest, etc. in Westeros, most of the surviving food would inevitably find its way in the rich rather than the poor regions because merchants buy and sell food for a profit, not to feed the general population. If I am hungry and you have food I'll get your food unless you are a madman who doesn't understand how basic economy works.

Nope. The Lannisters do not control the second most fertile land in Westeros. That would be the Riverlands. The Vale of Arryn rivals the Reach in fertility, but it constitutes only a small part of the total kingdom of the Vale, so on average the Arryns would fall below the Riverlands, and probably more or less equal to the Westerlands from a fertility perspective.

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1 hour ago, Free Northman Reborn said:

Nope. The Lannisters do not control the second most fertile land in Westeros. That would be the Riverlands. The Vale of Arryn rivals the Reach in fertility, but it constitutes only a small part of the total kingdom of the Vale, so on average the Arryns would fall below the Riverlands, and probably more or less equal to the Westerlands from a fertility perspective.

Can you back up that claim by quotes?

My (fallible) memory tells me that TWoIaF made it pretty clear that the West is at least fertile - perhaps even more fertile - than the Riverlands. And considering that the West and the Reach are both richer than the Riverlands (the latter due to profits they make by producing and selling food, horses, etc.) I see no indication to believe that the Riverlands are more fertile than the West.

Not to mention that more people live in the West, despite the fact that the Riverlands seem to be about the same size as the Westerlands.

The Vale of Arryn as such might be more fertile than any other region in Westeros (outside, perhaps, the Valley of the Thenns) but it is a very small area. If you take the entire territory the Arryns control the lands controlled by the Lannisters, Tyrells, and Tullys should be, on average, be much more fertile than the Vale. After all, the Fingers and the Mountains of the Moon are very crappy land, as seem to be the rocky coastal regions.

In any case, the fertility of the fertile regions of the Vale apparently do not transfer into wealth. Else the Waynwoods and Corbrays wouldn't be as poor as they are.

The lords of the Reach are rich as hell, as are the majority of the Westermen. There is also wealth to be found in the Riverlands, to be sure, and I certainly would say the Riverlands are the third richest region in the Seven Kingdoms after the West and the Reach, but there is no Lannister- or Tyrell-like splendor in the Riverlands. Not even Hightower-like splendor.

The Freys are wealthy, and Lord Ambrose Butterwell certainly was rich, but there doesn't seem to be any insane wealth to be found there.

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Posted (edited)

30 minutes ago, Lord Varys said:

Can you back up that claim by quotes?

My (fallible) memory tells me that TWoIaF made it pretty clear that the West is at least fertile - perhaps even more fertile - than the Riverlands. And considering that the West and the Reach are both richer than the Riverlands (the latter due to profits they make by producing and selling food, horses, etc.) I see no indication to believe that the Riverlands are more fertile than the West.

Not to mention that more people live in the West, despite the fact that the Riverlands seem to be about the same size as the Westerlands.

The Vale of Arryn as such might be more fertile than any other region in Westeros (outside, perhaps, the Valley of the Thenns) but it is a very small area. If you take the entire territory the Arryns control the lands controlled by the Lannisters, Tyrells, and Tullys should be, on average, be much more fertile than the Vale. After all, the Fingers and the Mountains of the Moon are very crappy land, as seem to be the rocky coastal regions.

In any case, the fertility of the fertile regions of the Vale apparently do not transfer into wealth. Else the Waynwoods and Corbrays wouldn't be as poor as they are.

The lords of the Reach are rich as hell, as are the majority of the Westermen. There is also wealth to be found in the Riverlands, to be sure, and I certainly would say the Riverlands are the third richest region in the Seven Kingdoms after the West and the Reach, but there is no Lannister- or Tyrell-like splendor in the Riverlands. Not even Hightower-like splendor.

The Freys are wealthy, and Lord Ambrose Butterwell certainly was rich, but there doesn't seem to be any insane wealth to be found there.

I would ask you the same question about backing your claim up with quotes.

It is never stated that the Westerlands are more populous than the Riverlands. In fact, Martin himself has stated categorically that the Riverlands are fertile and populous, but divided. and lacks natural borders.

Martin's own words were that the Reach is the most populous and the West is the richest. And this wealth is due to their mines. Just going by geography the Riverlands are both larger and consists of fertile river plains compared to much of the Westerlands being covered by hills and low mountains.

There is of course no direct comparison provided between the populations of the West and the Riverlands, but there is equally no basis to proclaim the West as more populous. Based on the comparative geography, the Riverlands should be the more populated.

 

Edited by Free Northman Reborn

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Westerlands has 1 city, Riverlands has several towns that have failed to become cities due to that charter thing. Saltpans, Maidenpool, Fair Market Harroway's Town and Stoney Sept are all towns of notice. Which region would be more populous; smaller one with hills all around and a single city or bigger one with rivers all around and several towns?

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1 hour ago, Free Northman Reborn said:

I would ask you the same question about backing your claim up with quotes.

It is never stated that the Westerlands are more populous than the Riverlands. In fact, Martin himself has stated categorically that the Riverlands are fertile and populous, but divided. and lacks natural borders.

I've listed the quotes detailing the fertility of the regions back in one of the military threads. You should go back and read up the quotes detailing the fertility of the Westerlands.

1 hour ago, Free Northman Reborn said:

Martin's own words were that the Reach is the most populous and the West is the richest. And this wealth is due to their mines. Just going by geography the Riverlands are both larger and consists of fertile river plains compared to much of the Westerlands being covered by hills and low mountains.

He also tells us that the Westerlands are the second most powerful region military-wise - which means that the armies of the West are stronger than the armies of the Riverlands, and that very much indicates that the overall population of the West is more numerous than the population of the Riverlands.

1 hour ago, Free Northman Reborn said:

There is of course no direct comparison provided between the populations of the West and the Riverlands, but there is equally no basis to proclaim the West as more populous. Based on the comparative geography, the Riverlands should be the more populated.

They are not.

Tywin invades the Riverlands with multiple armies and there is no indication that the Riverlords technically outnumber the invading forces of their enemies but only fail to throw them back because their leaders are morons (Edmure and Robb make mistakes, too, of course, but there is no indication that Tullys could raise another 10,000-20,000 men the same way Tywin can when he sends word back to Stafford.

In addition, if the Riverlands were as powerful as you seem to imply here then Robb's entire army would have had best been a welcome additional asset, not something they desperately needed to throw the Lannisters back. In fact, if there were such hidden assets (right now there are still reaches of the Riverlands untouched by war) then Robb would also not have been as dependent on help from the Vale as he was.

26 minutes ago, Corvo the Crow said:

Westerlands has 1 city, Riverlands has several towns that have failed to become cities due to that charter thing. Saltpans, Maidenpool, Fair Market Harroway's Town and Stoney Sept are all towns of notice. Which region would be more populous; smaller one with hills all around and a single city or bigger one with rivers all around and several towns?

Lannisport is a huge city, nearly as large as Oldtown. And market towns are not limited to the Reach and the Riverlands. They exist in the West, too.

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Posted (edited)

Tywin never raises another 10000-20000.

Edmure has 8000 infantry and 3000 horse without the Freys AFTER two of his greater vassals lose their entire force and he suffers a big defeat. He'll have no new horseman raised in that short time, these would be the survivors of earlier battles.

As for the infantry, well, captured knights and lords get to live because of their ransoms, captured infantry, common folk, have no ransoms.

 Also, after reports of Jaime's defeat, Kevan suspects Robb's and Edmure's combined Strength may exceed their own.

I'd like to learn more of these westerlands towns 

As for the size of Westerlands, Oxcross near the mountain pass of Pendrick hills is only 3 days ride from Lannisport. That is how "big" westerlands is.

Edited by Corvo the Crow

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11 hours ago, Lord Varys said:

I've listed the quotes detailing the fertility of the regions back in one of the military threads. You should go back and read up the quotes detailing the fertility of the Westerlands.

He also tells us that the Westerlands are the second most powerful region military-wise - which means that the armies of the West are stronger than the armies of the Riverlands, and that very much indicates that the overall population of the West is more numerous than the population of the Riverlands.

They are not.

Tywin invades the Riverlands with multiple armies and there is no indication that the Riverlords technically outnumber the invading forces of their enemies but only fail to throw them back because their leaders are morons (Edmure and Robb make mistakes, too, of course, but there is no indication that Tullys could raise another 10,000-20,000 men the same way Tywin can when he sends word back to Stafford.

In addition, if the Riverlands were as powerful as you seem to imply here then Robb's entire army would have had best been a welcome additional asset, not something they desperately needed to throw the Lannisters back. In fact, if there were such hidden assets (right now there are still reaches of the Riverlands untouched by war) then Robb would also not have been as dependent on help from the Vale as he was.

Lannisport is a huge city, nearly as large as Oldtown. And market towns are not limited to the Reach and the Riverlands. They exist in the West, too.

Yes the Westerlands have a strong military (35k men including mercenaries, plus an additional unknown number of rabble at Oxcross, to be exact). So what? Martin has been directly asked about the Riverlands military strength, and his response was that the Riverlands are fertile and populous, but suffer from divided leadership and weak natural borders.

Clearly he is saying that their population size does not correlate to their military strength. By contrast, the Westerlands have everything going for them to raise a BIGGER army than their population would normally make possible. Primarily their vast wealth, generated from mining activities.

Yes Lannisport is a large city (about halfway between Gulltown and Oldtown in size, according to Martin, so probably around 150k people. So no, not nearly as large as Oldtown, as you suggest. But still, it is a big city). Again. So what? The Vale also has a much larger city than anything the Riverlands has. Does that mean the Vale has a larger population than the Riverlands? How about the Crownlands? Do they also have a higher population than the Riverlands?

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17 hours ago, Free Northman Reborn said:

Nope. The Lannisters do not control the second most fertile land in Westeros.

True.

17 hours ago, Free Northman Reborn said:

 

That would be the Riverlands. The Vale of Arryn rivals the Reach in fertility, but it constitutes only a small part of the total kingdom of the Vale, so on average the Arryns would fall below the Riverlands, and probably more or less equal to the Westerlands from a fertility perspective.

Seems false given what we are told

Though the Vale itself is famously fertile, it is small compared to the domains of other kings (and even some great lords), and the Mountains of the Moon are bleak, stony, and inhospitable. Trade is therefore of paramount importance to the rulers of the Vale

while the Westerlands is described as

The Westerlands are a place of rugged hills and rolling plains, of misty dales and craggy shorelines, a place of blue lakes and sparkling rivers and fertile fields, of broadleaf forests that teem with game of every sort, where half-hidden doors in the sides of wooded hills open onto labyrinthine caves that wend their way through darkness to reveal unimaginable wonders and vast treasures deep beneath the earth.
These are rich lands, temperate and fruitful, shielded by high hills to the east and south and the endless blue waters of the Sunset Sea to the west.
 
The Westerlands, due their borders, are going to have regions just as fertile as the Reach and Riverlands. The Mander, the Blue Fork, the Blackwater Rush, the Tumblestone all run into the Westerlands. There is no reason why they'd be any less effective in the West than they are in their neighbouring realms. 
 
There is a reason why the Westerlands is one of the three most populace regions, it is because it can support one. 
 
13 hours ago, Corvo the Crow said:

Westerlands has 1 city, Riverlands has several towns 

The Westerlands also has towns such as Kayce. Obviously we know more of the towns of the Riverlands, North and Crownlands as we have spent a significant amount of time in those regions and zero time in the West, but the idea that there is only one city and no towns is ridiculous. 

 

 

 

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1 hour ago, Free Northman Reborn said:

Yes the Westerlands have a strong military (35k men including mercenaries, plus an additional unknown number of rabble at Oxcross, to be exact). So what? Martin has been directly asked about the Riverlands military strength, and his response was that the Riverlands are fertile and populous, but suffer from divided leadership and weak natural borders.

Sure, nobody ever doubted that Riverlands were fertile and populous. I'd say they are have the third largest population in the Seven Kingdoms - after Reach and the West.

1 hour ago, Free Northman Reborn said:

Clearly he is saying that their population size does not correlate to their military strength. By contrast, the Westerlands have everything going for them to raise a BIGGER army than their population would normally make possible. Primarily their vast wealth, generated from mining activities.

The wealth isn't generated only by their richness in gold and other metals, but also by the fact that they control fertile lands. Tywin's army includes one insignificant sellsword company. The overwhelming bulk of his strength are Westermen. And they are not his entire strength. They talk about raising additional armies in the West even in AFfC.

1 hour ago, Free Northman Reborn said:

Yes Lannisport is a large city (about halfway between Gulltown and Oldtown in size, according to Martin, so probably around 150k people. So no, not nearly as large as Oldtown, as you suggest. But still, it is a big city). Again. So what? The Vale also has a much larger city than anything the Riverlands has. Does that mean the Vale has a larger population than the Riverlands? How about the Crownlands? Do they also have a higher population than the Riverlands?

I actually don't know how large the population in the Crownlands is. Due to the fact that the Riverlands are significantly larger and about as fertile and densely populated (in the rural areas) as the Crownlands, I'd say more people live in the Riverlands than in the Crownlands. But I'd not say that few people live in the Crownlands. KL and Duskendale alone make sure of that.

12 minutes ago, Bernie Mac said:

True.

I'd say that your description of the West in addition with what we know about the population size of the Westerlands implies that they are, on average, a more fertile region than the Riverlands. Or perhaps only a more effectively cultivated regions. The Riverlands may be just as fertile but may have wetlands and swamps due to the many rivers in the region. The domains near the Twins (Hog's Mire, for instance, the place Chett is from) seem to be not exactly that great region to live in.

And as I've said - I'm reasonably confident that the most fertile regions in the Vale may be the most fertile regions in all the Seven Kingdoms, but that would be a comparatively small region compared to the lands the Arryns control.

It seems the Vale is capable of producing a considerable surplus of food - enough to feed its own population as well trade significant quantities of the grain they have (the fact that they don't share anything with the clansmen is a political decision, not something that necessity forces them to do). They are a large player in the (international) food market, but they are not likely to produce more food in total than the Riverlands, the Westerlands, or the Reach.

That the West seems to be staying out of the food trade as far as we know (although they might very well have had a rather prosperous business relationship with the Iron Islands back in the days the Ironborn exchanged iron for food) would be due to the fact that they would have to get their goods around Westeros to Dorne or the Stormlands to find people who really need to buy food from them.

And the lack of major ports at the western shores of the North doesn't make it all that likely the Westermen are very much invested in selling food to the North (although it certainly might happen in hard and dire winters).

1 hour ago, Corvo the Crow said:

Tywin never raises another 10000-20000.

He could. Stafford's men were about another 10,000, were they not? And while some of them might have been survivors, there is no indication that Tywin Lannister took all his mounted knights with him to the Riverlands. The West should have the largest density of mounted warriors (knights and freeriders) per square mile, anyway, considering that the people there are likely to afford more horses than anybody else in Westeros.

1 hour ago, Corvo the Crow said:

Also, after reports of Jaime's defeat, Kevan suspects Robb's and Edmure's combined Strength may exceed their own.

That is why Tywin has Stafford raise a new army. But you have to see that in context. Tywin and Kevan didn't see Robb's army at Riverrun. They only heard reports of what transpired there.

1 hour ago, Corvo the Crow said:

I'd like to learn more of these westerlands towns.

We, too. I'd also learn stuff about the market towns in the Riverlands and the Reach. Aside from a couple of names we don't know any. But they have to be there, especially in the Reach. The people have to live somewhere. I'm pretty sure we'll get some names once POVs finally travel through the Reach to Oldtown or Highgarden, just as George suddenly put a town at the shore of Cape Wrath were previously hadn't been a town.

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