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About Morte

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    Hedge Knight

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    Sigil, the Hive Ward
  • Interests
    (in no particular order:) books, comics, CRPGs, history, archaeology ... have I mentioned books?

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  1. Morte

    What will happen when the dragon horn is sound?

    I, too, don't believe the horn does work the way Euron or Victarion think it will, because of the exact reasons given by @blacken. But I am confident that something will happen, when it is blown, so here is my theory: We know that dragons can and do bound because they are raised by and with humans, or simply tamed by feeding and trust growing. But it seems to me, that you can't control the binding this way, just make it more likely - it still depends ONLY on the sympathy between dragon y and human x. This was okay with the few dragons the Targs did have in Westeros, as you only needed a few bounded adult dragons (and Cannibal ^^) to ensure population control. But in Valyria, there were not only a lot more dragons, but they also were played a much bigger part in their culture (we can presume). In this context you not only don't want a lot of uncontrolled dragons roaming free, but you also don't want to make the binding a game of chance. In fact, binding with a dragon may well have been part of an initiation ritual, at least a bit part of growing up, in which case you would like to somehow force the binding, even if you can't force to whom. So how about the horn indeed somehow forcing unbound dragons to look for a fitting rider? But not necessary the one blowing the horn? Or maybe the @Giant Ice Spider and @blacken got it right and it is indeed the one blowing the horn, but only, if this someone does know and had preformed the necessary blood&fire-magic-of-not-being-burned-by-it correctly? In the latter case - and without a Valyrian Bloodmage at least on novice level trying to bind to his or her scaled childhood friend- when the horn is blown the two free dragons will indeed start looking for "their" rider, but I highly doubt it will be one of the Ironbound.
  2. Morte

    Awful translations from aSoIaF

    Yes, the infamous "King's Mouth" is from the new translation. And no, nobody can even imagine why they chose to call King's Landing that way. The naming is inconsistent and as often as not quite disturbing, even for German reader who don't know the English original.
  3. Morte

    Awful translations from aSoIaF

    Yes, as a german-as-a-first-language speaker I can say you are right: It would be "Königslandung". As others have stated, the new German translation is incoherent and sometimes quite awful. It was even worse in it first installation by Random House. The very first translation from Bastei (last century ^^) was decent too, they left the names untranslated, and had not half as many errors.
  4. I'm with @LyrnaSnowBunnyAvenger here: Your first premise alone undoes the complete story, as Rhaegars first and foremost reason for the abduction of Lyanna is, that Elia is unable to bear another child, aka the third head of the dragon. As Rhaegar wouldn't have disappointed and hurt Cersei as Robert did, she would have been at least _more_ faithful (maybe even completely) and Rhaegar would at least have got his three children. He isn't Robert, so "love" alone would not be a reason for him to dangle with Lyanna. So, no: No tower of joy, no child born there, no rebellion, no dragons, etc. No Song of Ice and Fire. [Lyanna would get a very unhappy marriage with Robert; if Tywin can no longer control Aerys' madness, he, Rhaegar and the Kingsguard would get the king to retire (as was indeed planed by Rhaegar and his friends); Cat would marry Brandon (most likely not as happy as with Ned); well: and maybe Ned, as the second son _could_ indeed get his father to allow him to marry Ashara (if they were indeed in love), so this two would be happy - not really enough story for seven books, eh?]
  5. What I would like: 1) Maester Marwyn will become Dany's Maester and one of her advisors. 2) Gilly will end up in the Bay of Dragons and can indeed offer something: she will be the one who can verify Marwyn's claims about the Others, so Dany will be more convinced to go to Westeros and to the North. 3) Maester Aemon will be the first Targ in a long time to get a proper family burial - by Dragon fire (I think he would have liked this ) 4) Yes, this would be poetic indeed: Aemon Steelsong, the prince beyond the Wall, heir to the Iron Throne.
  6. While I do not think that a lot of characters are based on just one persons (else we would not be able to give them the freedom that blessed us with - mostly - logical and in-depth developements of characters and cursed us with massive knots GRRM has to untight), I like the topoi and pictures he uses, for example here one maybe not all have noticed: Dany (a woman) riding a white filly (and not a black stallion) while wearing the fur of a lion is a reminiscence of Alexander the Great, who was often depicted wearing the lions fur of Herakles on coins and whose stallion Bukephalos was black.
  7. Morte

    We need more V. Steel at The Wall.

    Some of my thoughts on the subject of weapons against the Others: So what do we have? - Obsidian works; this will most likely be the material used for weapons for the masses, especially bowmen. And Obsidian does also work quite well for spearheads (+ range is good against the Others). - Dragonsteel, which could or could not mean Valyrian Steel should work against them; I do think we have a synonym here, even if its not confirmed yet - Some of the Valyrian weapons are missing. I always wondered, if the .... with blood inside the Targ family does have something to do with secret passages inside of Dragonstone only available for people with enough Targ-blood, so maybe Dany will find a hidden cache (containing the missing Valyrian weapons and armor of House Targeryen) on Dragonstone? - And there is a smith who can reforge Valyrian Steel, who knows the spells, but did not manage to make new Valyrian Steel... What if the problem with making them lies in the "old" name - "Dragon Steel" - and you would indeed need Dragon fire to forge a Valyrian weapon? Maybe we will see Tobho Mott forging new Valyrian weapons with the help of Dragon fire?
  8. Morte

    Powdered hands

    Powdered hands feel smoother to the touch of others and look brighter and more harmonious, so yes: it's make up for hands and something very feminine to do. That's why nobody finds it strange, as they expect such a behaviour from an eunuch, even more as they know that Varys was born as a commoner and sold as a slave, so maybe they even expect his hands to be more harsh then a eunuch would like. For Varys himself this makes it even more simple to avoid being recognized when in one of his less noble disguises. That's all: He plays the feminine eunuch, and plays his role well. No big mystery here.
  9. Morte

    Critical Reviews of ASOIAF

    Excuse me, but: Did you actually read more then a part of the first book? Because, as the article on fascist aesthetics you linked does recognize, this (from your article about fascistic aesthetics - which is, btw, very good, and in fact positive about ASoIaF, just concerned) is indeed what got Martin to start the books, that's why his "heroes" have flaws and make bitter mistakes. And while the author of this article does fear for Martin to loose his goal and fall back into the standard fantasy tropes (and with them fascist aesthetics), it did not happen yet. Beside I don't think that we have to worry about Dany becoming that typical fantasy hero, not after ADwD. But, very important here: This article you linked dates before the release of ADwD, so the author did and could not include and rate the characters' struggle and failures in that book. (For this, see the comment section of this particular article, by the responses of the author we can be quite sure that he may has been pleased with the deconstruction of the young rulers in ADwD)
  10. Morte

    A few questions

    Thanks for clarifying which of the wild dragons died and which disappeared, had confused Cannibal and Grey Ghost here. This may be true indeed, albeit I also tend to think that the poison-theory on the last hatchlings is not far fetched at all, maybe even will be revealed in the last books. And in this the maesters would most likely play a major part, too.
  11. Morte

    A few questions

    1. We know a little about vanishing dragons (Grey Ghost for example); Marwyn however does imply that the maesters did something to make the dragons go extinct - at this moment we do not know what this could have been. 2. Many theories here. The Targs did think that it needed dragons blood to tame a dragon (and that Nettles "drop" was enough); however: we don't know if this is true (I don't think so), it may well be that it is "only" necessary to form a bound with the dragon, as Nettle did by feeding Sheepstealer. (I also don't think that Vic's horn does bind one or more dragons to the horns owner, but that the horn will somehow drive the dragons to actively search a bounding partner-human. Just my theory here, as the Targs did not need a horn at all - but we will see how the horn does play out) 3. We don't know for sure, but it does sound as if the sacrifice needed for hatching dragons is a really big one, so most of the tries would still fail, albeit maybe doing something completely different. 4. It is stated in the books that the winters are getting longer and tougher since the last dragon died, so they indeed seem to have been a result/symptom/indication for the counterpart to (or truce with) the Others. Fire magic for sure diminished since the dragons extinction and is coming back/getting stronger since Dany hatched her dragons. I don't remember if this is also true for other human magic, or even the magic of the CotF, but other people might recall if this was stated somewhere? However I think (can't look it up at this moment) Quaithe did speak about magic in general awakening.
  12. Morte

    Critical Reviews of ASOIAF

    Thanks a lot, great analysis, just want to add some details I found interesting while browsing the blogger's other reviews. On this, this and this: From the lecture of other reviews I seems to me that the blogger does have a problem with books in which the protagonists are not typical heroes with a deep impact on the world (see his problems with "The Culture", here he finds _the_ two books with something like a hero the best; his problems with the more complex and philosophical books of Mieville - or the problems the blogger has with what little of Continental European SciFi he had read: Jeschke, one book x) ), or books that don't have heroes at all. So yes, he does blame GRRM for exactly the things most people like the books for - that is: not being "like all the others". And some thoughts on this: Of course you are right, a lot of people describe ASOIAF as "gritty realism" because they are irritated about what GRRM is doing in his books, opposed to a "proper" fantasy book (which I would not even try to read at all): Martin is basically throwing history at fantasy tropes, deconstructing and reconstructing them in this process (and heavily using mythological pictures - just to de- and reconstruct them too). That's why main characters can die if they manoeuvre themselves into stupid situations. Because being Caesar/Brutus/Napoleon/Maria Stuart/... (insert random rl-"hero" aka important historical figurine of your liking here) does not make you win every battle, achieve everything you want and live happily ever after automatically*. Because the good guys not only don't exist, but also don't win by being nice. Because the abyss does look back into you and the way to hell is paved with good intentions... etc. pp. Just like: "How was Aragon's tax policy?" Why would someone how has never learned to rule become a good king automatically? Shouldn't he be more like Jon or Dany - learning to rule first? *Because, you know: Daß der Mensch glücklich werde, ist im Bauplan der Schöpfung nicht vorgesehen. - It is not intended within the blueprint of creation for human to be happy. (Sigmund Freud)
  13. Well, the sudden appearance of Leto II would surely solve all current problems of Planetos, making it possible to end the series even in one book!
  14. Morte

    Bowen Marsh was right to remove Jon from office.

    I agree with you here. I don't want to argue that Jaime was right to break his oath, as sure it would have been other and better ways to stop the king's plan and care for the rest of the royal family, preventing the massacre. True. He is arrogant and self-righteous, the last thing gets better since the beginning of his redemption arc and his contact with Brienne. While he still had his sword hand Jaime was the master of self delusion and will-full non-thinking, he had to loose his hand to even his Überich to reach him. True. But I do think that it would have been much easier to make the NW accept building defences, then to march on WF with Wildlings. Ok, no. I may be critical of Jon, but IMHO he has makings of a good ruler - _if_ he learns the right lessons from his mistakes. His intentions are good and he has some good, unorthdox ideas, but he needs to learn to think things through, to look at situations from several angles, to truly listen to his critics (even a stopped clock is right occasionally!) and to cut his losses when necessary. I very much think that Jon and Dany's storylines were intended as mirroring failure-states of leadership by promising, but immature rulers - too little compromise with local establishement versus too much. And while it is true that GRRM portrayed Jon's thought processes and internal justifications in more analytical detail and more compellingly (he tends to do it better with male characters than female ones, I have noticed), and that the setting that he is placed in and many people that he interacts with are more vividly depicted, not to mention very thoroughly established as characters from the earliest volumes of the saga, still his opponents have been quite strawmanish, so I can see how he looks more competent and sympathetic to some. But, IMHO, it was not the author's intention to depict Jon as infallible and as having reached the pinnacle of his potential as a leader, but to show his growing pains, flaws and the difficulty of command / rule in general. Agree. Criticising a character for the things we should see as mistakes/failures is not hate. Both Dany and Jon will learn from their mistakes in ADwD, hopefully already in TWoW (if it will ever be published ). [And yes, Dany's plot is heavily suffering from never-been-intended-to-be-written; Jon's not so much, as characters and setting are a lot more fleshed out, being introduced earlier and also plot-relevant until the very end of the series.]