The Sunland Lord

Jaime broke an oath when he killed Aerys

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Jaime took an oath and he broke it. 

He should have protected his king and do as he was commanded.

Aerys told Jaime to deal with the rebels who took arms against their liege.

Instead, Jaime Lannister betrays his king and kills him. 

I think that Jaime should've put aside all he was and knew before he had the great and rare honour of becoming a member of the Kingsguard.

But, he decided that this oath didn't matter when it suited him. 

What's your opinion? 

 

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You're right.   However, I know Jamie's thoughts on this.   I could not take my father's head at my king's command.  Perhaps Jamie was too young.  Read Jamie's chapters a few more times to see if you still feel this way.   So many oaths...

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47 minutes ago, The Sunland Lord said:

Jaime took an oath and he broke it. 

He should have protected his king and do as he was commanded.

Aerys told Jaime to deal with the rebels who took arms against their liege.

Instead, Jaime Lannister betrays his king and kills him. 

I think that Jaime should've put aside all he was and knew before he had the great and rare honour of becoming a member of the Kingsguard.

But, he decided that this oath didn't matter when it suited him. 

What's your opinion? 

 

An oath is worth hundreds of thousands of people's lives? Nope. Jamie being able to feel self-righteous  (until he's burned up by wildfire), doesn't equal out to that. 

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2 minutes ago, Varysblackfyre321 said:

An oath is worth hundreds of thousands of people's lives? Nope. Jamie being able to feel self-righteous  (until he's burned up by wildfire), doesn't equal out to that. 

And did he have to kill him?

Why not knock him out and escape KL with aerys and rhaegar kids? 

Even if he had reason to kill aerys why didn t he go protect the other targs in essos?

He did what was better for him. It just happened to save the lives of the people in KL

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I think there are certain obvious hints that Jaime really wanted to kill Aerys for a long time, and most definitely didn't do it to save anyone but to see the light die in the man's eyes.

The burnings, Aerys raping his own sister-wife, the wildfire plan, etc. - all that got to Jaime and made him sicker and sicker. But the deciding factor as to why he snapped seems to have been Aerys' command to go out and bring him Tywin's head. Jaime was supposed to kill his own father to placate this madman. That he didn't do. Instead he killed Rossart (likely to save his father's life and the lives of the Lannister men in the capital) and then he came back to kill Aerys.

Killing Rossart is also a sort of heroic act in the sense that it definitely helped to save the lives of the innocent people in the city - at least those who Tywin's men were not slaughtering while Jaime was butchering Rossart (among them Elia and her children) - but killing Aerys was, in the end, nothing but the cruel act of a young man who had been corrupted and twisted by starting to serve an insane and cruel king at too young an age.

If Jaime had cared about his vows, if he had wanted not to kill Aerys, he could have just not killed Aerys. It is not that this was necessary to save anyone. Rossart was taken care of. Jaime could have gone back into the throne room to distract Aerys, telling him the blood was indeed Tywin's (or the blood of some Lannister soldiers he had killed and that he had to take Aerys to safety now). That could have prevented him long enough from sending some other messenger to implement the wildfire plan. All he needed to do to ensure that Aerys remained harmless was giving him the impression Rossart was doing what he commanded him to do.

He could also have arrested, knocked out, or injured the king, handing him over to Tywin's men as soon as they arrived - and they apparently stormed in the throne room merely second or at best 1-2 minutes after Jaime had cut Aerys' throat. Else they wouldn't have found him there since Jaime himself admits that he actually intended to sneak out the room, essentially making Aerys' death as much a mystery as Maegor's. That didn't work out because he was caught red-handed.

And he could only be caught red-handed because he killed the king immediately before Tywin's men arrived there. Jaime would have known that they were coming, too, considering that he reentered the throne room only seconds before his father's men came bursting in. Aerys also knew that Tywin's men were already in the castle. It was a matter of minutes at best.

Granted, betraying Aerys to Tywin wouldn't have earned Jaime a place among the greatest Kingsguard. But he wouldn't have been known as the Kingslayer. Had he stood aside or yielded while Tywin's men arrested the king, or had he even knocked him out people would have shunned him later on, too, but they would have acknowledged that he was in an impossible situation there - choosing between his father and a (mad) king would have been tough choice. His honor wouldn't have survived intact but he wouldn't have been known as the Kingslayer.

The problem people have is not so much that Jaime betrayed his king - two knights of Maegor's Kingsguard did that, too - but that he killed him with his own hands. That's something that's pretty much unforgivable. And it was not necessary to save anyone.

It is understandable that Jaime did it, but it is not a good or great deed.

Especially not if you consider the follow-up. Jaime hunts down Aerys' pet alchemists to kill them, too, without ever telling anyone about this, or why he is doing this. Anybody killing Aerys to save the city would have talked about that. And anybody with half a brain would have known that having thousands of jars of wildfire hidden across the city isn't exactly a good thing when you are living in that city and don't want that city to burn...

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I'm of the opinion that Aerys is Jaimes real father so when Aerys orders him to kill his father he does so with out knowing there by obeying his king to end. So he's not the kingslayer but a kinslayer and he never broke his oath. 

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1 hour ago, divica said:

And did he have to kill him?

Why not knock him out and escape KL with aerys and rhaegar kids? 

Even if he had reason to kill aerys why didn t he go protect the other targs in essos?

He did what was better for him. It just happened to save the lives of the people in KL

Yeah he'd still be in violation of his oaths to knock out his king and deliver him to be summarily executed by his opponents. Killing Aerys was a bonus. And why would he go to essos to protect other Targs? He killed their patriarch. He and his family would be better off if they had died off altogether.

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A bloody sword is a beautiful thing.-Brandon Stark

Brandon was different from his brother, wasn't he? He had blood in his veins instead of cold water. More like meJaime Lannister

He had an awesome, beautiful, golden sword that Rhaegar and Aerys wouldn't let him use at the Trident for the royalists. He wanted to see what his golden sword looked like with blood on it, blood that belonged to what he thought was an unworthy king.

Just like he bloodied his other golden sword with Cersei's maiden head. Maiden head blood that should have belonged to her husband and his king, Robert, who he saw as unworthy.

Edited by Ralphis Baratheon

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2 minutes ago, Varysblackfyre321 said:

Yeah he'd still be in violation of his oaths to knock out his king and deliver him to be summarily executed by his opponents. Killing Aerys was a bonus. And why would he go to essos to protect other Targs? He killed their patriarch. He and his family would be better off if they had died off altogether.

He should knock him out and run away with him and as many targs as he can. That is his duty!

By joining the KG jamie left his family. He shouldn t be worried about them.

He could have saved KL without killing aerys. Therefore keeping his vows and doing what he should have wanted.

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Yeah he did. He broke an oath he had sworn. That's a fact. No one can dispute it. 

Now, what would have been the right course of action that's an endless discussion and there's no conclusion to get to. We all see it differently depending on our own personal ethics, which is molded throughout life by the culture we are immersed in, the upbringing we get and the experiences we go through

2 hours ago, The Sunland Lord said:

I think that Jaime should've put aside all he was and knew before he had the great and rare honour of becoming a member of the Kingsguard.

I for one fundamentally disagree with this assessment. But I believe we are here to enrich each other with our views on the characters. It's amazing how we all read the same words and come up with very different interpretations of them. 

I don't think that it's very productive to discuss if a character was right or wrong in a given situation. It's interesting to discuss what the said character thought, how he viewed himself, if he believe he was justified or if he didn't care, what connections can be made, what the autor wanted to tell us between the lines, what the author is trying to tell us through the actions he has us witness... simply discussing "how wrong was he!?" is not really enriching. 

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27 minutes ago, divica said:

He should knock him out and run away with him and as many targs as he can. That is his duty!

By joining the KG jamie left his family. He shouldn t be worried about them.

He could have saved KL without killing aerys. Therefore keeping his vows and doing what he should have wanted.

Hmmm, I wonder what would have happened if he had done so. I'm sure Aerys, being the sane and reasonable monarch he was, would have forgiven Jaime for his defiance. Or maybe, just maybe, he would have met a similar end to Lord Chelsted. 

How is Jaime supposed to carry an unconscious Aerys out of the Red Keep when there are both Lannister men and Royalists still inside?

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42 minutes ago, divica said:

He should knock him out and run away with him and as many targs as he can. That is his duty!

By joining the KG jamie left his family. He shouldn t be worried about them.

He could have saved KL without killing aerys. Therefore keeping his vows and doing what he should have wanted.

He can't harm the king's royal person. His duty is to obey the king. It is not his place to question him. And they(the lanisters) were literaly at the gate when he confronted Jamie. I'm sure is a pretty strong guy but he wouldn't be able to lug him to some place safe. He'd already break his oath in any case no use bringing down who he loves with him just because of some stupid concept of "honor".

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If the text hasn't been read for a while, the mind has an odd way of turning things into black and white causing the nuance to be lost. So here's Jaime's own words on the matter.

Much of the story is about conflicting vows and which gains priority and why. Jaime was faced with being a Kingslayer or a Kinslayer. He made a choice, and either way, it came with condemnation.

Jaime: No matter what you do, you’re forsaking one vow or another.

ASOS Jaime II

But when he closed his eyes, it was Aerys Targaryen he saw, pacing alone in his throne room, picking at his scabbed and bleeding hands. The fool was always cutting himself on the blades and barbs of the Iron Throne. Jaime had slipped in through the king's door, clad in his golden armor, sword in hand. The golden armor, not the white, but no one ever remembers that. Would that I had taken off that damned cloak as well.

When Aerys saw the blood on his blade, he demanded to know if it was Lord Tywin's. "I want him dead, the traitor. I want his head, you'll bring me his head, or you'll burn with all the rest. All the traitors. Rossart says they are inside the walls! He's gone to make them a warm welcome. Whose blood? Whose?"

"Rossart's," answered Jaime.

ASOS Jaime V

"Everything was done in the utmost secrecy by a handful of master pyromancers. They did not even trust their own acolytes to help. The queen's eyes had been closed for years, and Rhaegar was busy marshaling an army. But Aerys's new mace-and-dagger Hand was not utterly stupid, and with Rossart, Belis, and Garigus coming and going night and day, he became suspicious. Chelsted, that was his name, Lord Chelsted." It had come back to him suddenly, with the telling. "I'd thought the man craven, but the day he confronted Aerys he found some courage somewhere. He did all he could to dissuade him. He reasoned, he jested, he threatened, and finally he begged. When that failed he took off his chain of office and flung it down on the floor. Aerys burnt him alive for that, and hung his chain about the neck of Rossart, his favorite pyromancer. The man who had cooked Lord Rickard Stark in his own armor. And all the time, I stood by the foot of the Iron Throne in my white plate, still as a corpse, guarding my liege and all his sweet secrets.

The traitors want my city, I heard him tell Rossart, but I'll give them naught but ashes. Let Robert be king over charred bones and cooked meat. The Targaryens never bury their dead, they burn them. Aerys meant to have the greatest funeral pyre of them all. Though if truth be told, I do not believe he truly expected to die. Like Aerion Brightfire before him, Aerys thought the fire would transform him . . . that he would rise again, reborn as a dragon, and turn all his enemies to ash.

This is beyond sick, to murder and entire city believing you yourself will not die but be transformed while so many innocent men, women and children remain ash. Among them, Jaime’s father and other family members.

ACOK Catelyn VII

"How can you still count yourself a knight, when you have forsaken every vow you ever swore?"

Jaime reached for the flagon to refill his cup. "So many vows . . . they make you swear and swear. Defend the king. Obey the king. Keep his secrets. Do his bidding. Your life for his. But obey your father. Love your sister. Protect the innocent. Defend the weak. Respect the gods. Obey the laws. It's too much. No matter what you do, you're forsaking one vow or the other." He took a healthy swallow of wine and closed his eyes for an instant, leaning his head back against the patch of nitre on the wall. "I was the youngest man ever to wear the white cloak."

"And the youngest to betray all it stood for, Kingslayer."

"Kingslayer," he pronounced carefully. "And such a king he was!" He lifted his cup. "To Aerys Targaryen, the Second of His Name, Lord of the Seven Kingdoms and Protector of the Realm. And to the sword that opened his throat. A golden sword, don't you know. Until his blood ran red down the blade. Those are the Lannister colors, red and gold."

As he laughed, she realized the wine had done its work; Jaime had drained most of the flagon, and he was drunk. "Only a man like you would be proud of such an act."

"I told you, there are no men like me. Answer me this, Lady Stark—did your Ned ever tell you the manner of his father's death? Or his brother's?"

"They strangled Brandon while his father watched, and then killed Lord Rickard as well." An ugly tale, and sixteen years old. Why was he asking about it now?

"Killed, yes, but how?"

"The cord or the axe, I suppose."

Jaime took a swallow, wiped his mouth. "No doubt Ned wished to spare you. His sweet young bride, if not quite a maiden. Well, you wanted truth. Ask me. We made a bargain, I can deny you nothing. Ask."

"Dead is dead." I do not want to know this.

"Brandon was different from his brother, wasn't he? He had blood in his veins instead of cold water. More like me."

"Brandon was nothing like you."

"If you say so. You and he were to wed."

"He was on his way to Riverrun when . . ." Strange, how telling it still made her throat grow tight, after all these years. ". . . when he heard about Lyanna, and went to King's Landing instead. It was a rash thing to do." She remembered how her own father had raged when the news had been brought to Riverrun. The gallant fool, was what he called Brandon.

Jaime poured the last half cup of wine. "He rode into the Red Keep with a few companions, shouting for Prince Rhaegar to come out and die. But Rhaegar wasn't there. Aerys sent his guards to arrest them all for plotting his son's murder. The others were lords' sons too, it seems to me."

"Ethan Glover was Brandon's squire," Catelyn said. "He was the only one to survive. The others were Jeffory Mallister, Kyle Royce, and Elbert Arryn, Jon Arryn's nephew and heir." It was queer how she still remembered the names, after so many years. "Aerys accused them of treason and summoned their fathers to court to answer the charge, with the sons as hostages. When they came, he had them murdered without trial. Fathers and sons both."

"There were trials. Of a sort. Lord Rickard demanded trial by combat, and the king granted the request. Stark armored himself as for battle, thinking to duel one of the Kingsguard. Me, perhaps. Instead they took him to the throne room and suspended him from the rafters while two of Aerys's pyromancers kindled a blaze beneath him. The king told him that fire was the champion of House Targaryen. So all Lord Rickard needed to do to prove himself innocent of treason was . . . well, not burn.

"When the fire was blazing, Brandon was brought in. His hands were chained behind his back, and around his neck was a wet leathern cord attached to a device the king had brought from Tyrosh. His legs were left free, though, and his longsword was set down just beyond his reach.

"The pyromancers roasted Lord Rickard slowly, banking and fanning that fire carefully to get a nice even heat. His cloak caught first, and then his surcoat, and soon he wore nothing but metal and ashes. Next he would start to cook, Aerys promised . . . unless his son could free him. Brandon tried, but the more he struggled, the tighter the cord constricted around his throat. In the end he strangled himself.

"As for Lord Rickard, the steel of his breastplate turned cherry-red before the end, and his gold melted off his spurs and dripped down into the fire. I stood at the foot of the Iron Throne in my white armor and white cloak, filling my head with thoughts of Cersei. After, Gerold Hightower himself took me aside and said to me, 'You swore a vow to guard the king, not to judge him.' That was the White Bull, loyal to the end and a better man than me, all agree."

"Aerys . . ." Catelyn could taste bile at the back of her throat. The story was so hideous she suspected it had to be true. "Aerys was mad, the whole realm knew it, but if you would have me believe you slew him to avenge Brandon Stark . . ."

"I made no such claim. The Starks were nothing to me. I will say, I think it passing odd that I am loved by one for a kindness I never did, and reviled by so many for my finest act. At Robert's coronation, I was made to kneel at the royal feet beside Grand Maester Pycelle and Varys the eunuch, so that he might forgive us our crimes before he took us into his service. As for your Ned, he should have kissed the hand that slew Aerys, but he preferred to scorn the arse he found sitting on Robert's throne. I think Ned Stark loved Robert better than he ever loved his brother or his father . . . or even you, my lady. He was never unfaithful to Robert, was he?" Jaime gave a drunken laugh. "Come, Lady Stark, don't you find this all terribly amusing?"

"I find nothing about you amusing, Kingslayer."

"That name again. I don't think I'll fuck you after all, Littlefinger had you first, didn't he? I never eat off another man's trencher. Besides, you're not half so lovely as my sister." His smile cut. "I've never lain with any woman but Cersei. In my own way, I have been truer than your Ned ever was. Poor old dead Ned. So who has shit for honor now, I ask you? What was the name of that bastard he fathered?"

Catelyn took a step backward. "Brienne."

"No, that wasn't it." Jaime Lannister upended the flagon. A trickle ran down onto his face, bright as blood. "Snow, that was the one. Such a white name . . . like the pretty cloaks they give us in the Kingsguard when we swear our pretty oaths."

Brienne pushed open the door and stepped inside the cell. "You called, my lady?"

"Give me your sword." Catelyn held out her hand.

When you read Jaime's words here and elsewhere, it becomes apparent that Jaime was traumatized by seeing what Aerys did to the Starks at such a young age. I think his reasons for swearing to Catelyn were many: his own want to restore himself to his own idea of honor of which he dreamed when he was young. He obviously wanted to be free. But I think he also saw swearing to save the Stark girls was a way to heal himself and right a wrong after what he saw Aerys do to the Stark men when he was a boy. Notice that these were extremely slow deaths. Imagine young Jaime standing and watching for all of that time, unable to do anything. I mean really try to imagine how long that must have felt, taking in every grotesque detail, every scream...Is Jaime the monster, or was Gerold Hightower the monster here?

(Off topic, but I only became convinced by RLJ because entirely too many times when Rhaegar and Lyanna are both mentioned, Jon (Snow or Arryn) also makes an appearance on page in proximity relative to the reader. Notice Jon Snow comes up here.)

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Referencing the conflicting oaths...

House Tully’s words are Family, Duty, Honor. Honor is #3 after Family and Duty. The Arryn’s disagree with the Tully’s priorities however: As High as Honor. For the Starks, nothing comes before the threat of Winter. Some house words speak of family, some of honor. Some of duty, some of independence and rebellion. Jaime’s choice was in accordance with the Tully family words: Family came first before Honor, and perhaps this partially informed Catelyn's decision to release him. Ned tried to live by the Arryn words but when Varys explained what would happen to his family if he did not make the fake confession, he took the Tully words instead: Family first. He also chose Family before Honor when he protected Jon. But Ned forgot his own family words, Winter is Coming: He should have never left the North when Winter’s coming was inevitable and inevitably fierce after the extremely long Summer.

You can see that different houses have different priorities.

From the wiki.

A-E

House Allyrion - No Foe May Pass
House Ambrose - Never Resting
House Arryn - As High as Honor
House Ashford - Our Sun Shines Bright
House Baratheon - Ours is the Fury (adopted by Orys Baratheon from Argilac the Arrogant, the last Storm King[1])
House Beesbury - Beware Our Sting
House Bolton - Our Blades are Sharp
House Buckwell - Pride and Purpose
House Bulwer - Death Before Disgrace
House Caron - No Song So Sweet
House Cerwyn - Honed and Ready
House Codd - Though All Men Do Despise Us
House Crakehall - None so Fierce
House Egen - By Day or Night

F-J

House Flint of Widow's Watch - Ever Vigilant
House Follard - None so Wise
House Footly - Tread Lightly Here
House Forrester - Iron From Ice (Telltale Game)
House Fossoway of Cider Hall - A Taste of Glory
House Fowler - Let Me Soar
House Graceford - Work Her Will
House Grandison - Rouse Me Not
House Greyjoy - We Do Not Sow
House Hastwyck - None So Dutiful
House Hightower - We Light the Way
House Hornwood - Righteous in Wrath
House Jordayne - Let It be Written

K-P

House Karstark - The Sun of Winter
House Lannister - Hear Me Roar!
House Lannister - A Lannister always pays his debts (unofficial)
House Lonmouth - The Choice is Yours
House Marbrand - Burning Bright
House Martell - Unbowed, Unbent, Unbroken
House Mormont - Here We Stand
House Mallister - Above the Rest
House Merryweather - Behold Our Bounty
House Mooton - Wisdom and Strength
House Oakheart - Our Roots Go Deep
House Peckledon - Unflinching
House Penrose - Set Down Our Deeds
House Piper - Brave and Beautiful
House Plumm - Come Try Me

Q-U

House Redfort - As Strong as Stone
House Royce - We Remember
House Sarsfield - True to the Mark
House Sarwyck - Family is Hope, Protect it Always (Game of Thrones RPG by Cyanide)
House Serrett - I Have No Rival
House Smallwood - From These Beginnings
House Stark - Winter is Coming
House Stokeworth - Proud to Be Faithful
House Swygert - Truth Conquers
House Swyft - Awake! Awake!
House Tallhart - Proud and Free
House Targaryen - Fire and Blood
House Tarly - First in Battle
House Tollett - When All is Darkest
House Toyne - Fly High, Fly Far
House Trant - So End Our Foes
House Tully - Family, Duty, Honor
House Tyrell - Growing Strong

V-Z

House Velaryon - The Old, the True, the Brave
House Waxley - Light in Darkness
House Wendwater - For All Seasons
House Wensington - Sound the Charge
House Westerling - Honor, not Honors
House Westford - Death Over Dishonor (Game of Thrones RPG by Cyanide)
House Whitehill - Ever Higher (Telltale Game)
House Wode - Touch Me Not
House Wydman - Right Conquers Might
House Yronwood - We Guard the Way

 

I think it should also be noted that Jaime's oath was tainted from the beginning. Oaths are two-way things and the honor of both parties is equally important. Aerys never chose Jaime to be a KG, the youngest ever. His oath was just a political ploy to weaken Tywin.

ASOS Jaime VI

King Aerys made a great show of Jaime's investiture. He said his vows before the king's pavilion, kneeling on the green grass in white armor while half the realm looked on. When Ser Gerold Hightower raised him up and put the white cloak about his shoulders, a roar went up that Jaime still remembered, all these years later. But that very night Aerys had turned sour, declaring that he had no need of seven Kingsguard here at Harrenhal. Jaime was commanded to return to King's Landing to guard the queen and little Prince Viserys, who'd remained behind. Even when the White Bull offered to take that duty himself, so Jaime might compete in Lord Whent's tourney, Aerys had refused. "He'll win no glory here," the king had said. "He's mine now, not Tywin's. He'll serve as I see fit. I am the king. I rule, and he'll obey."

That was the first time that Jaime understood. It was not his skill with sword and lance that had won him his white cloak, nor any feats of valor he'd performed against the Kingswood Brotherhood. Aerys had chosen him to spite his father, to rob Lord Tywin of his heir.

 

 

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You know what I can't help think killing Aerys in the way he did was an unintended kindness. I mean if his father had taken Aerys in his custody yeah Tywin would for sure torture the guy.  If Robert got his hands on him Tywin would likely still be given to Tywin to be tortured a bit or tortured by Robert himself before facing having to be publicly behead and face thousands of jeers by the people on Westeroes.

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29 minutes ago, Lollygag said:

ACOK Catelyn VII

 

"How can you still count yourself a knight, when you have forsaken every vow you ever swore?"

 

Jaime reached for the flagon to refill his cup. "So many vows . . . they make you swear and swear. Defend the king. Obey the king. Keep his secrets. Do his bidding. Your life for his. But obey your father. Love your sister. Protect the innocent. Defend the weak. Respect the gods. Obey the laws. It's too much. No matter what you do, you're forsaking one vow or the other."

Thanks for providing the quote @Lollygag!  This is one of my favorite scenes in the entire series.  Jaime has a fantastic sense of perspective here.  I don't think he was necessary a hero for killing Aerys, but he at least recognizes the hypocrisy in the oaths and expresses how genuinely morally conflicted he was at the time.  What a terrible thing for a young man to experience.  I pity him.  Jaime is boss, I love his character.

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1 hour ago, Lucius Lovejoy said:

Thanks for providing the quote @Lollygag!  This is one of my favorite scenes in the entire series.  Jaime has a fantastic sense of perspective here.  I don't think he was necessary a hero for killing Aerys, but he at least recognizes the hypocrisy in the oaths and expresses how genuinely morally conflicted he was at the time.  What a terrible thing for a young man to experience.  I pity him.  Jaime is boss, I love his character.

I completely agree with all of this. Jaime really snuck up on me to become one of my favorites. I see something new in this scene every time I read it (Catelyn saying "Dead is dead" and what that seems to imply about the subject matter given that she herself will prove the exception).

A tremendous number of horrors were committed in rl history because people turned their hearts and brains off and just followed orders. I think Jaime especially is a commentary on that. I find it a very sensitive treatment as it acknowledges how hard standing up really is, the implications of it, the costs, and the long-term effect of witnessing such horrors feeling as though one couldn't stop them.

 

Edited by Lollygag

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Jamie did the right thing knowing his pov later and the about the wildfire plot, if I had read only AGOT I would agree with you.

I also would like to add that Robert definitely should not have kept him in the kg, he should have gone to the wall, but thats not Jamie's fault.

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5 hours ago, Sensenmenn said:

I'm of the opinion that Aerys is Jaimes real father so when Aerys orders him to kill his father he does so with out knowing thereby obeying his king to end. So he's not the kingslayer but a kinslayer and he never broke his oath. 

:thumbsup:

Real Oedipal stuff -- full of ironic karmic (and comic) twists, just the way GRRM likes it.

Quote

A Feast for Crows - Jaime I

 had led a dozen guards below, with torches and ropes and lanterns. For hours they had groped through twisting passages, narrow crawl spaces, hidden doors, secret steps, and shafts that plunged down into utter blackness. Seldom had he felt so utterly a cripple. A man takes much for granted when he has two hands. Ladders, for an instance. Even crawling did not come easy; not for nought do they speak of hands and knees. Nor could he hold a torch and climb, as others could.

And all for naught. They found only darkness, dust, and rats. And dragons, lurking down below. He remembered the sullen orange glow of the coals in the iron dragon's mouth. The brazier warmed a chamber at the bottom of a shaft where half a dozen tunnels met. On the floor he'd found a scuffed mosaic of the three-headed dragon of House Targaryen done in tiles of black and red. I know you, Kingslayer, the beast seemed to be saying. I have been here all the time, waiting for you to come to me. 

The beast only 'seemed to be saying...' because that's not what it actually said.  Jaime misheard the dragon, who said 'I know you, Kinslayer'!

7 hours ago, Curled Finger said:

 I could not take my father's head at my king's command

This.

And this:

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A Game of Thrones - Bran II

The man looked over at the woman. "The things I do for love"...

Jaime chucked a child he'd promised to bring to safety ('Take my hand...') from the window 'for love' of his sister-lover Cersei; he freed a prisoner he was duty-bound to guard 'for love' of his little brother Tyrion; and he killed a king he had sworn to protect 'for love' of his father Tywin.  Although it's difficult for most readers to believe, there were a few people who loved Tywin -- and Jaime was one of them.

4 hours ago, Lollygag said:

House Tully’s words are Family, Duty, Honor. Honor is #3 after Family and Duty. The Arryn’s disagree with the Tully’s priorities however: As High as Honor. For the Starks, nothing comes before the threat of Winter. Some house words speak of family, some of honor. Some of duty, some of independence and rebellion. Jaime’s choice was in accordance with the Tully family words: Family came first before Honor, and perhaps this partially informed Catelyn's decision to release him.

Good point.

4 hours ago, Lollygag said:

I think it should also be noted that Jaime's oath was tainted from the beginning. Oaths are two-way things and the honor of both parties is equally important. Aerys never chose Jaime to be a KG, the youngest ever. His oath was just a political ploy to weaken Tywin.

More good points!

2 hours ago, Lollygag said:

A tremendous number of horrors were committed in rl history because people turned their hearts and brains off and just followed orders. I think Jaime especially is a commentary on that. I find it a very sensitive treatment as it acknowledges how hard standing up really is, the implications of it, the costs, and the long-term effect of witnessing such horrors feeling as though one couldn't stop them.

Well said.  This is one of GRRM's most heartfelt themes, that of the measure of responsibility we bear for not only the things we do ('the man who swings the sword'), but also the things we say ('the head that says the words'), and even for the things we see ('the ones who ['only'] watch').  In GRRM's world, the 'watchers' do not get a free pass:

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A Storm of Swords - Catelyn III

One of the captives dropped to his knees. "Mercy, sire. I killed no one, I only stood at the door to watch for guards."

Robb considered that a moment. "Did you know what Lord Rickard intended? Did you see the knives drawn? Did you hear the shouts, the screams, the cries for mercy?"

"Aye, I did, but I took no part. I was only the watcher, I swear it . . ."

"Lord Umber," said Robb, "this one was only the watcher. Hang him last, so he may watch the others die. Mother, Uncle, with me, if you please." He turned away as the Greatjon's men closed upon the prisoners and drove them from the hall at spearpoint. Outside the thunder crashed and boomed, so loud it sounded as if the castle were coming down about their ears. Is this the sound of a kingdom falling? Catelyn wondered.

 

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A Dance with Dragons - The Queensguard

Barristan Selmy had known many kings. He had been born during the troubled reign of Aegon the Unlikely, beloved by the common folk, had received his knighthood at his hands. Aegon's son Jaehaerys had bestowed the white cloak on him when he was three-and-twenty, after he slew Maelys the Monstrous during the War of the Ninepenny Kings. In that same cloak he had stood beside the Iron Throne as madness consumed Jaehaerys's son Aerys. Stood, and saw, and heard, and yet did nothing.

But no. That was not fair. He did his duty. Some nights, Ser Barristan wondered if he had not done that duty too well. He had sworn his vows before the eyes of gods and men, he could not in honor go against them … but the keeping of those vows had grown hard in the last years of King Aerys's reign. He had seen things that it pained him to recall, and more than once he wondered how much of the blood was on his own hands. If he had not gone into Duskendale to rescue Aerys from Lord Darklyn's dungeons, the king might well have died there as Tywin Lannister sacked the town. Then Prince Rhaegar would have ascended the Iron Throne, mayhaps to heal the realm. Duskendale had been his finest hour, yet the memory tasted bitter on his tongue.

 

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A Storm of Swords - Tyrion IX

"Your father," said Prince Oberyn, "may not live forever."

Something about the way he said it made the hairs on the back of Tyrion's neck bristle. Suddenly he was mindful of Elia again, and all that Oberyn had said as they crossed the field of ashes. He wants the head that spoke the words, not just the hand that swung the sword. "It is not wise to speak such treasons in the Red Keep, my prince. The little birds are listening."

"Let them. Is it treason to say a man is mortal? Valar morghulis was how they said it in Valyria of old. All men must die. And the Doom came and proved it true." The Dornishman went to the window to gaze out into the night. "It is being said that you have no witnesses for us."

I know you and I will agree to disagree about the final example :), but I include it here, because it fits the pattern of someone abdicating responsibility to stand up and give faithful testimony in respect of an atrocity they have witnessed, allowing tyrants to get away with murder:

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A Game of Thrones - Eddard III

"They were not the only ones present," Ned said. "Sansa, come here." Ned had heard her version of the story the night Arya had vanished. He knew the truth. "Tell us what happened."

His eldest daughter stepped forward hesitantly. She was dressed in blue velvets trimmed with white, a silver chain around her neck. Her thick auburn hair had been brushed until it shone. She blinked at her sister, then at the young prince. "I don't know," she said tearfully, looking as though she wanted to bolt. "I don't remember. Everything happened so fast, I didn't see …"

"You rotten!" Arya shrieked. She flew at her sister like an arrow, knocking Sansa down to the ground, pummeling her. "Liar, liar, liar, liar."

What it boils down to is that 'doing the right thing' involves a measure of self-sacrifice most people are not willing to offer.  Hence, most arguments defending Sansa's 'safe' choice here of feigning ignorance highlight her shrewd instinct for self-preservation.  Of course, GRRM has the last word on the matter at the devastating close of the chapter, by killing her, not Arya's, wolf.  The message:  not standing up to tyrants, or even tacitly enabling them, in the hopes of remaining untouchable, can backfire and end up having very real consequences for oneself.

Edited by ravenous reader

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