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Anthony Appleyard

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  1. In the book version, Victarion has led the whole Iron Fleet round to Slaver's Bay trying to catch Dany and her dragons. But he will find that she and her dragons are safely airborne and away, and the dysentery epidemic called the Pale Mare waiting for him. Likely he will have to go back home, pursued by an angry Essosi fleet, to the Iron Islands, just in time for both to be caught up in the final battle against the Night King. How severe a winter can the Night King's power make? Will Victarion come home to find the Iron Islands solidly frozen in and joined to the mainland by pack-ice?
  2. This Youtube video is about languages in what used to be Yugoslavia. It mentions a real city and called it "King's Landi' - uhh - Dubrovnik".
  3. This page https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/A_Game_of_Thrones_(disambiguation) lists various GoT / SoIaF -related videogames. Which of them are multi-player? Which of them are still running? What has happened to them? The videogame described at https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Game_of_Thrones:_Winter_Is_Coming was much advertized on Youtube a while ago. Has anyone here played it?
  4. Cersei's trial :: I thought that in the books the Faith had already tried her for much "sleeping about" and made her parade naked through King's Landing. The Battle of Winterfell :: Who between? To me, likely all living Men armies there including the wildlings/Freefolk, together in grand alliance, versus the Night King's army. (I hope that the dragons and the mammoths are not killed.) After the thaw, what proves to have happened to the smallfolk of the North? Likely many of them are sheltering in the big castles. Stories about "snow unicorns" prove from descriptions to be woolly rhinos (Coelodonta antiquitatis or Elasmotherium). (I suspect that the real-world unicorn stories started as the Indian One-horned Rhinoceros , until it got muddled by stories told by whalers trying to get a better price for narwhal tusks.) Another possibility is that the Night King causes such a severe winter that the Iron Islands are solidly joined to the mainland by strong thick landfast ice, and Victerion's Iron Fleet; after finding that Dany and her dragons are safely away airborne, returns pursued by vengeful Essosi fleets, cannot reach base, and it must surrender, or ally itself with the main human army against the Night King, and the Iron Islands become part of the Seven Kingdoms..
  5. 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".
  6. See:- https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Sabrewing_Rhaegal for a proposed new cargo plane. https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Pseudocalotes_drogon https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Pseudocalotes_rhaegal https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Pseudocalotes_viserion 3 species of lizard in the genus https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Pseudocalotes
  7. And how do the Dragonpit's staff handle dragons?, to get among them to feed them, and to sweep up their droppings, and to bring a dragon back to its stable if its rider lands it and dismounts away from its stable, and such jobs familiar to the staff at a large horse stable.
  8. It is unlikely that the shipping technology of the time would let a nation of The North import by sea a largish proportion of its food needs, particularly to areas a long way from a seaport.
  9. Here to tell about the Sunkland family. In and around the Neck of Westeros is dangerous swamp and tidal sand and mud that, legend said, had once been forested land, but in ancient time the Children of the Forest had sunk it by great magic to try to keep invading Men out of the north, and men in the area called this the Sunk Lands. Wilmi, a farmer, and his men, lived on the south shore of the west end of The Bite on the east shore of the Neck in the Kingdom of Mountain and Vale. He bred many horses grazing on safer parts of the marshes of the Neck. Riding their horses, he and his people routinely chased off or killed or caught wandering thieving bands instead of losing crop or money to them. Sailors brought tales from afar in Essos about the Dothraki; this gave him the idea to develop skill in horseback archery. This was an unusual skill in Westeros, and it was useful against wandering suspect bands. Some men who had been inland in Essos and seen Dothraki nicknamed him Khal Wilmi. After a while he found what "Khal" meant, but he was too busy to bother chasing after such exotica and foreign customs. Having the resources, he built, instead of a castle, a long seawall of earth faced with big stones, enclosing much tidal foreshore and dangerous seaside swamp. As well as oxcarts, he could afford to use a family connection to venture a new idea to buy three mammoths and their handlers from the far North and use them to haul matchingly big wagons, to carry more earth and stones. At last the wall was finished, and the water behind drained out through tidal sluices that automatically opened at low tide and shut at high tide; the enclosed land gradually dried out. He called the result a seafortfield. Rain gradually washed the salt out, and he found how to reinforce shallow water-bed with "sink-mesh" of interlaced willow branches weighted down with large stones. His men harvested tall reeds and threshed them for their seeds, which they sowed all over the new land. Their roots gradually sucked the water out of the airless stinking sea-mud and turned it into fertile land soil. After five years in a great fire he burnt off the reeds when they were tall and dry. Next year he and his men ploughed the land (often with a mammoth on the plough to break up the close network of tough reed rhizomes), and sowed, and at last harvested a first salt-stunted crop of wheat from land which had long been sunken. In later years he reaped better crops, and made more seafortfields, and more men came to settle on them under his authority. And none of this land was taken from other men. His motto words were "The sunken is reclaimed" or "We again have that which the sea took". They followed the Faith of the Seven. 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. Soon after, the current King of Mountain and Vale accepted his family as a Great House, since they now owned much reclaimed land. He made a start at enlarging his holdfast into a castle, which men called Castle Wilmi, in case enemies attacked. Aegon the Conqueror came soon after, and Walitar Sunkland, the current lord in Castle Wilmi, saw Aegon confront Torrhen, last king and first lord of the North. Walitar and his folk accepted the change in rule, and bent the knee accordingly. His descendants remained skilled in land-reclamation, and their services were sometimes called for, on Westeros and occasionally elsewhere. In the reign of King Jaehaerys I, on a somewhat chilly morning with the grass still wet after a day's heavy rain, the people at Castle Wilmi were startled and alarmed to see one of the king's dragons flying in and landing nearby. It was Caraxes, also called the Blood Wyrm, large and red. But its rider, the king's son Aemon, merely called out instruction that one of the Sunkland family who was skilled at land reclamation was needed urgently at King's Landing. Stefin Sunkland, the current lord there, put on a warm winter coat and a big backpack that he kept packed for journeys, and with some dread approached the dragon's ominous bulk, and touched it. Aemon told Stefin which protrusions to use for handhold or footrest to climb up the dragon's left shoulder, and he sat behind its rider Aemon. As it took off, he had the usual shock at first seeing land from high above. Over much of a day, it carried them over the mountainous wilderness around the Vale of Arryn, high above the heads and weapons of the dangerous mountain clans, over the Trident river, and had landing and night rest and food at Harrenhal. Next day they flew over the big lake called the God's Eye, and then along the kingsroad through the Crownlands. The king had organized routine horseback patrols to protect road travellers against gangs, which were escalating to bigger gangs gathering to try to stop bigger better-armed road convoys. In one place Stefin and Aemon both recognised from above something not easily seen from the ground, a large bandit gang spread out waylaying a section of the road. Aemon told Stefin to hold on tight, and swooped Caraxes along the road and flamed out the lurking gang; and travelling in the area for lords and merchants and smallfolk was much safer for a long time after. As they came in to land, he saw so much damage to King's Landing that he asked "Who attacked?", but Aemon told him that the cause was severe weather; it was later found that a heavy thunderstorm had developed over the Westerlands, while a line of heavy squally rain of the sort that brings cold winds in after it swept in from the endlessly wide Sunset Sea, and over the mountains of the Westerlands the rain strip shovelled up the thunderstorm in a huge cloudburst which caused violent flash floods in the headwaters of every river that flowed out including the Blackwater Rush, which carried it east to King's Landing. Over the harbour as Caraxes came down to land by the Red Keep, Stefin saw men struggling to clear the harbour channel of huge piles of boulders and trees and pieces of bridges and watermills that the flood had brought down. They landed, and he followed them into the Red Keep as Caraxes was led back to his stall in the high-domed Dragonpit. An attendant said "Excuse." and grabbed Stefin's left arm, seeing that Stefin was struggling against the urge, common in the Sunkland line, to strip off his lordly robes, revealing underlying work clothes, and rush off to help a nearby group of workmen and carthorses and yoked oxen who were trying to disentangle a jumble of uprooted trees. He was led to the King. As they consulted, a raven, delayed by bad weather, flew in with news about severe flood and storm damage to Lannisport. They discussed. Stefin advised about anti-flood defences. He was called on to help to reclaim and drain a nearby patch of marsh that outlaws had been lurking in; that was done. He advised about a possible system for much better drainage of the city's runoff and foulwater, but this advice was filed and gradually forgotten, as laying it would have disturbed too many rich people's property. Later, after his business there was finished, he went home on a horse, along with a large official party which was going in the same direction. ~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~ The endless-looking job of clearing King's Landing harbour of wreckage from Stannis's attack was going on as it could, between delays caused by storms and tide. Everybody and everything that could get to site and pull was there. Cheering and trumpeting announced arrival of five mammoths and their riders brought by Lord Annun Sunkland from his land by The Bite, to help to haul heavy wreckage out of the water, and Annun rode on the first mammoth's hairy neck; he hoped that nobody would feel disrespected by him riding higher above the ground than a royal dragonrider would on the base of his steed's neck walking on the ground on the wrists of its wings and its back feet. Work went on faster after that. Once at extreme low spring tide, everybody was cleared well back away while Nikuli on Bluewings flew over and burnt up a big tangle of wreckage: the only safe way to get to site in time across much foul sinking mud and destroy several unexploded big pots of wildfire that were trapped in it. An explosion of green wildfire flames followed Bluewings all too close as he flew his fastest to get away, but the flames in the end went out, and work carried on. The mammoths made a few noises but proved steady when Nikuli on Bluewings flew near them to drop a rope to men working away from shore on tidal mud, so they could tie it to wreckage to haul it out. Someone said that safer would have been a trebuchet throwing a weight trailing the rope, but none could be found near enough. Nesting birds ventured onto the work site and made good use of shed mammoth hair to line nests.
  10. What mention is there in the books of a dragon being ridden specifically with a saddle or specifically bareback? I read in A Knight of the Seven Kingdoms (= Ktot7K ? Not7K ?) that in the Dance of the Dragons, one rider fell to her death because she had fastened herself to her saddle but had not fastened her saddle to her dragon. (The matter of dragon saddles is raised in Eragon.) Saddling a dragon will prove more expensive because adult horses stay the same size but dragons (unless their food intake is closely controlled) keep on growing.
  11. Dunk and Egg seems to contain one of the various bits of text where word-play causes problems for translaters. Here, the word-play is between "Egg", referring to his bald head, and his real name "Aegon". How do translaters manage here? French "oeuf", German "Ei", Spanish "huevo", Russian "яйцо" ("yaytso") :: the word-play is lost. Same in one of the books where someone remarks that a dragonfly looks nothing like a dragon: "dragonfly" becomes French "libellule", German "Libelle", Norwegian "øyenstikkere", Russian "стрекоза " ("strekoza"), etc: again, the word-play is lost.
  12. It would be useful if someone (who has access to WoIaF's foreign-language versions) could make such lists.
  13. In England is or was a tree-surgeon calling himself "Kraken Tree Care", who may have read WoIaF. I have a business card from him; it shows, on a black background, a purple or sepia kraken, holding an axe and a chainsaw in its two frontmost arms.
  14. "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.
  15. As WoIaF has been translated into many languages, it may be of interest to compile a table or list of how WoIaF names (of people and places etc) are rendered in various real languages. One example is that "sept" is translated into French as "septuaire".
  16. 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.
  17. 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.
  18. 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."
  19. 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.
  20. 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.
  21. See https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Sirenia . But GRRM may have meant the Steller' s Sea Cow ( https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Steller%27s_sea_cow , Hydrodamalis gigas), which, like mammoths and aurochsen, are extinct in the real world but still survive in GRRM's stories.
  22. In WoIaF and GoT, what mention is there of an animal called a sea-cow?
  23. When I was a boy, my mother read the weekly magazine "Woman" ( https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Woman_(UK_magazine) ). One issue's readers' letters included a letter from a woman who wrote to the editor that she once told her children that they were "worse than a wagon-load of monkeys", and that later she found one of her children telling her dolls that they were "worse than a dragon-load of mumfies", accompanied by an editorial drawing of several monks riding on a dragon (drawn with 4 legs and 2 wings).
  24. She was praying to a god of one religion and also to a god of another religion, what some would call "being eclectic".
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