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Anthony Appleyard

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  1. Is it allowed to discuss SoIaF / GoT fan fiction here? Or merely to list web links to SoIaF / GoT fan fiction here? For example, the much-criticized ending to the TV series season 8 has caused a big bulk of fan fiction alternate continuations .
  2. As regards Balerion's fire being described as black and red, I assumed that it was smoky.
  3. A passage in the books described the dragon Balerion's fire as being black with red streaks. But hot flames are not black!? (Unless magic is involved.) But there are plenty of Youtube videos about real-world army flamethrowers, and some of them show a flamethrower making a petrol/gasoline flame of the usual bright color, and soon after, much black smoke. Could it be that GRRM looked at flamethrower videos to get an idea about what dragon fire might look like? (I read that when the movies were being made, flamethrower blasts were used as special effects in dragon fire-breathing.)
  4. And how severe will the winter become? Will we see Lannisport ice-locked? Men having to mount masts and sails on big sledges to cross the Narrow Sea from Gulltown to Braavos? Frost killing the wine grape vines on the Arbor?
  5. Some of these changes between the books and the TV series may be due to the change from a written medium to a spoken medium. As https://awoiaf.westeros.org/index.php/Others in "A Wiki of Ice and Fire" points out, the difference between "the others" in its ordinary sense as "not us", and "the Others", is clear in printed text, but not so easy in oral speech, and the TV series refers to the Others as the White Walkers. Regrettably, I have not watched much of the TV series. (I have read the books plenty.) What word does the TV series use to mean wights, to distinguish them from "whites" in speech? For meanings of the English word "wight" as it changed over time, see https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Wight . How is the difference between the Others, and others, handled in the books as translated into languages do not have distinct lowercase and uppercase letters? (Hebrew, Arabic, Persian, Urdu, Hindi and other Indian languages)
  6. For many small brains to link together and become a hive mind, needs reasonably fast communication between them. Compare the length of time that a swarm of bees needs to decide where to fly to, after scout bees have found possible hollows to build honeycomb in and have come back. Unless there is a hidden advanced technology like the Star Trek Borg have. With 2 more books to come, there may yet be a top leader of the enemy, which GRRM has not yet seen a need to write about in what has been published.
  7. I was recently admonished for bringing the movie (GoT) storyline's Night King into a discussion about events in the timeline of the books (SoIaF). But in the book continuity someone will have to lead the Enemy's army of wights etc and organize its equipping and supplying and provisioning. Is there any clue as to who or what that will be?, when the book WoW (Winds of Winter) comes out - I have seen various theorizations on Youtube about when that will be. Will there be a Night King, like in the movie? Or will the leader be the chief of the Others? Or what? The Enemy's armies need a leader, else there will be chaos among their ranks.
  8. Is there anything in GRRM canon to say whether wights need to breathe air (or oxygen) to stay active and move about and fight?
  9. What GRRM canon is there about the layout of a sept? Some GOT / SoIaF -derived videogames include ability for the player to build a sept, but such septs as shown in the game seem to me to be much influenced by European cathedrals without reference to GRRM and are not reliable as canon. (Search for the word "sept" is much swamped by "Sept" meaning "September".) Canon bit of information that I have found are: (1) A sept built on the Iron Islands had been demolished by the Ironmen, leaving only a seven-sided foundation. (2) Weddings take place between the images of the Father and the Mother, which therefore must be on adjacent corners of the heptagon. (3) There is singing in septs, presumably of hymns. (4) At intervals there is a Festival of the Maiden, where only virgin women and girls are allowed admission. If each of the Seven gods is an equal representation of a One God, as seems to be stated, that may mean that each of the 7 images and altars in a sept must be equally related to the others and so must be in a perfect circle (or heptagon). That causes a problem providing an adequately wide door to the sept, and (1) seems to prevent making the sept 8-sided with the 8th side being for the door. I have not yet found canon info even about which of these is true: (i) The Seven images are at the corners, or at the middles of the sides, of a heptagon, and face inwards. That constrains the amount of space that there is for a congregation, and for weddings (which attract a big congregation) would put the images of the Father and the Mother a long way apart. Compare most real churches and Hindu temples, which are rectangular with the sacred images at one end. (ii) The Seven images are all together in a small circle and face outwards, at the centre of the heptagonal building.
  10. Is there a list anywhere of how WoIaF / GoT personal and place names are represented in translations into other (real world) languages?
  11. I just now tried to access Dothraki.org and I got this error message: " Error 526 Ray ID: 660c364e4f2b4071 • 2021-06-17 12:16:58 UTC Invalid SSL certificate".
  12. "the unicorns are all but gone" :: That need not mean the animal like a horse with a narwhal tusk as a horn. Some old real-world drawings and descriptions of unicorns show a much bigger bulkier animal with one horn :: to me in the real world, the original real unicorn written about by Roman and Greek authors was the Indian Rhinoceros. (The change likely came from whalers or their merchants inventing stories trying to get a better price for narwhal tusks.) In the quote above, in a winter / Ice Age scenario, the speaker likely meant the Woolly Rhinoceros https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Woolly_rhinoceros (Coelodonta antiquitatis), or perhaps Elasmotherium https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Elasmotherium . "there will be no big alliance while the Bolton's are in charge of Winterfell" :: the desperate snow-siege-and-Others emergency may be enough to force even the Boltons to seek alliance; or the Boltons' army may mutiny and choose their own leader, who will then seek alliance. "the mammoths [are] down to a few hundred" :: with elephants, and thus likely with mammoths, a few hundred are plenty enough to breed and increase surprisingly quickly, if the herds are left undisturbed and hunting (including poaching) is prevented. And, does "a few hundred" mean only those south of the Wall? The Freefolk seem to have plenty of mammoths. "The dragons, however, are intruders. I believe they are the creation of dark magic and blood sacrifices, Blood Mages or necromancers mixing Firewyrms and Wyverns. They are the Fire, what destroyed the Childrens. And part, I believe, of why the Others have returned." :: Those Blood Mages or necromancers need not have been Valyrians; there are accounts of the first Valyrians being only shepherds, until some of them found a wild dragon's nest in the Fourteen Flames mountains. The long list in https://awoiaf.westeros.org/index.php/Dragon names wild dragons. Note the name Dragonstone (the island); on it is an active volcano hill named Dragonmont, where wild dragons could have bred.
  13. The previous book ends with Stannis's army stranded in the snow near Winterfell running out of food and having to eat their horses. As in the far north the Night King's army and the Others are pressing south and had driven the Freefolk to look for refuge south of the Wall, I suspect that we may see Winterfell and Stannis and the Wall garrison and the Freefolk all in one big alliance against the Night King's army. I can imagine Freefolk bringing mammoths (with Freefolk mahouts) to trample and tusk-sweep roads through the deep snow so that Stannis and his army can reach shelter and food and alliance in Winterfell.
  14. The Wikipedia page https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/The_Winds_of_Winter#Plot says (with a reference) that "The Winds of Winter will take readers farther north than any of the previous books, and the Others will appear in the book.". To avoid making spoilers, how far it is allowed to guess or logically calculate how the story will proceed here? I have seen the coming ending described as "bittersweet", which seems to say that there will be deaths of loved characters. I (and likely many) hope that: (1) Central hero characters such as Jon Snow and Daenerys Targaryen will survive. (2) Mammoths and dragons will survive, at least as enough breeding stock of each to carry their species on.
  15. The GRRM books desribe a case of north-of-the-Wall wildlings attacking the Wall bringing a mammoth with them. The last of the 5 or 7 (it varies) GRRM main-story-line books that we have so far, says that in the big evacuation of the wildlings to south of the Wall, the wildlings brought a big herd of mammoths with them. Several archers could usefully ride on a mammoth and there could see above ground obstacles. Best if they rode in a spear-and-arrow-proof howdah. In the spring, if the mammoth was trained to stand still on command, its shed winter hair could be pulled off and collected and used. Ivory :: a steady harvest of ivory could be had by waiting for death by natural causes. I am one of the (likely) many who have been working on a WoIaF/GoT fan-fiction story, and in it I include this bit: "Time passed. Each time a winter ended, as spring warm came, his mammoths shed their long winter hair; they had learned to stand still on order while men combed the sheddings out. It was spun and woven into strong cloth. Some local sea-fishermen tarred such cloth and used it as sea-clothes, as much as could be made. Birds collected loose shed hairs of it and lined nests with it. One of his mammoths calved. At ten months old its calf shed its milk tusks as the tips of its permanent tusks came through. When dark prevented outside work, he carved the milk tusks into seal-stamps, one with his wife's seal sigil on; and the other with his seal sigil on, a rearing horse (presumedly, and later in painted images actually, chestnut-coloured after his first horse), half-emerged from wavy water, as he still had struggles against the fury of the sea; some said that the Ironmen's Drowned God was trying to get back land that he had stolen from the sea. He built a holdfast to keep crops and valuables safe in on a rock that stood up in his reclaimed land by his harbour."
  16. Domesticated mammoths. Canon text in WoIaF shows that The North has mammoths. A domesticated mammoth ridden by a mahout (or whatever is the Westerosi word) would be useful for travel in deep snow, and by swinging its head with its long curved tusks to brush deep snow aside, plus its sense of smell as good as a hound's, it could find people lost in deep snow.
  17. The Andals sailed from Andalos in northwest Essos, to Westeros, to get away from the Valyrians, and brought their religion with them, and their religion had arisen in Essos. But later I read that all the septs are in Westeros, except one sept in Braavos, and it was only used by visiting Westerosi sailors. But I read that a mixed Andal-Valyrian population remained ;n Andalos, so it seems that some Andals remained in Essos and inter-bred with invading Valyrians. If so, what happened to the Faith of the Seven in Andalos? I also read that early invading Andals in Westeros drew 7-pointed stars on rocks. But that habit stopped. It could be that the High Septon ruled that the 7-pointed star symbol was too sacred to be casually drawn on outdoor public surfaces and used as a graffiti.
  18. I read that in the real world and in reality, Pope Sixtus V had a chronic bandit problem in the Papal States, and that he had convoys of food carried about, and the bandits robbed it and ate it. But this food was all poisoned, That ended that bandit problem.
  19. That sounds different in these times of routine heart operations.
  20. Infertility trouble happens in the real world also. In Britain, King George VI and his wife Elizabeth the Queen Mother had only 2 children, both daughters. The history of British royalty is plagued with childlessness, and long successions of stillbirths and neonatal deaths. It happened with George IV and his successor and brother William IV. Henry VIII for all his 6 wives only had three surviving children, and all 3 died childless. And British royalty never married kin closer than cousins. After Queen Anne died with no surviving offspring, the country had to look in Hanover in Germany to find an heir (George I). And we in the real world had no "blood of the dragon" to have to preserve. Historians in former times sometimes blamed venereal disease; but, thinking more cleanly, it may have been incompatibility between the husband's genes and the wife's mitochondrial DNA's genes.
  21. I once found in one of the books, a boy wondering why a dragonfly (the big insect) was so-called when it does not look much like a dragon. That text likely has caused nuisance to translaters, e.g. the French for "dragonfly" and "dragon" are "libellule" and "dragon".
  22. So much untranslatable play on words will NOT be appreciated by people who have to translate the books into foreign languages.
  23. I found an ambiguity in the online Dothraki to English dictionary: dishah: [d iSah]DPni.bark Here, does "bark" mean "bark of a tree", or the dog noise?
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