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Ivan Tsarevich

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Everything posted by Ivan Tsarevich

  1. Ah, but I have given some thought to the subject, and actually have sympathy towards the position you appear to argue for. I was being curious, not incredulous or anything of the sort. And my curiosity is satisfied enough. Thanks for replying.
  2. Erm, that kind of looks like whataboutism. And if you wonder why I care, well, I happen to be curious. Were you serious about Stannis, and if you were... why choose him? Is it his willingness to go so far for allegedly good cause? Or the fact that he turned up to help the NW? Because he finds himself raising a common-born to a Hand? Perhaps something else? As for my own reply, Baelor Breakspear looked mostly alright.
  3. If a second life is seen as a "final" condition with the skinchanger/warg in question losing their ability to move between bodies, perhaps it would be an idea worth mentioning to suggest that Borroq could force Jon out of Ghost (like Varamyr did to Haggon) but only do so after his body is resurrected with fire magic or otherwise healed. I think such a development would for its own part justify the resurrection and cadaver imagery associated with him, and if one assumes that the deed would be both risky, unusual and traumatic to both Ghost and Jon, it could also "justify" why Ghost reacts badly... if he reacts to the man or the pair rather than the boar alone. Also, if Borroq were to be instrumental in resurrecting a character as vital as Jon, it obviously would explain the focus he has received.
  4. I have not seen that reported yet. Would you be willing to share a source?
  5. Well, let's not. Guess I'll go out for a bit.
  6. If you have something you want to ask or say, you could do it now.
  7. Well, I remember some article about Finnish foreign fighter on the side of the Donbass separatists, so there's that.
  8. ...probably not in any way, I think. My brain brings up the lack of resources they may have and which I don't bother to try to find anything about. Out of curiosity, is s/he a Finnish citizen?
  9. Speaking of Finland's NATO membership: a citizens' initiative demanding a consultative referendum on joining has gathered enough support and so should be considered by parliament, though there may not be enough time to address it before 2023 elections.
  10. Well, in the last couple of hours I've read our PM, Marin, to say that Finland's relation to NATO has not changed and President Niinistö, speaking only for himself, saying he didn't bring it up in the NATO meeting today. If you know Finnish, see here. (That's Yle's website, owned by the Finnish state. I don't know how well it's available abroad.) Also, Niinistö commented on what Zaharova said, essentially saying it's nothing new.
  11. Our president, Niinistö, has just recently commented that joining NATO isn't that fast process. (I'm a Finn, if that needs to be clarified.)
  12. Makes me think this rather derisive comment which Xaro Xhoan Daxos makes of the Lhazareen. That only made him chuckle. "The Dothraki horselords call the Lhazarene the Lamb Men. When you shear them, all they do is bleat. They are not a martial people." Unless I'm mistaken, Leona opposes Davos when he comes to negotiate, preferring peace even after the Red Wedding, even if the peace includes marrying her own daughters to the Freys. The NW eating a lot of mutton (which you mention in the OP) reminds me of Eucharist, even if it may be that the Last Supper would actually not have included sheep meat. Jon (who with his corn king symbolism is killed for the Watch) looks like a Christ-like sacrificial fertility figure, and as mentioned, the Christ is known as the Lamb of God, being the ultimate sacrifice for the sins of men. So if Jon is a sacrificial lamb, then one might wonder whether the Watchmen are symbolically consuming his body. Of course, if we go by what Qhorin Halfhand says, then the Watchmen also are sacrificial figures themselves. So I don't know whether this is anything new, or how relevant it would be, but I'll mention it anyway. The peach/sheep thing reminds me of the tale of Cain and Abel. The obvious figure in ASoIaF associated with peaches is Renly, killed by his older brother. Besides the fratricide, Abel is a shepherd, bringing from the choice firstlings of his flock as an offering, while Cain the farmer brings from the fruit of the soil. If peaches are tied to sheep, well... either the connection is stronger or the coincidence more striking. The tale contains lot of similar symbolism than what is mentioned on this thread... crops, sheep, offering, murder of the innocent, blood crying out from the soil, and a curse. I find it very striking how similar the imagery superficially seems to be compared to what you wrote of The Sworn Sword.
  13. Yes, that quote I did see and it did not say what my memory told me.
  14. I can't say much to that... but if the Others have a basic understanding of geography and track and can anticipate the movements of their prey, the wildling host in this scenario, then they obviously must know that the wildlings moving down the Milkwater are on a collision course with Mormont on the Fist. Why not let them bleed each other? Unless they truly just hate the NW that much or it really is a sacred place for some reason. I guess one reason to attack asap would be if they truly knew that Mormont was about to move and wanted to minimize the amount of men that could get away. That could make sense (besides the reasons already mentioned) if they see the members of the NW as a greater threat than the wildlings for some reason... say, because they are bound to the service and unlikely to leave the Wall even if they made it back south, or because the magic of the Wall is actually somehow tied to the members of the Watch staying true. (I've from somewhere got in my head a thought that Wall only stands as long as the latter is the case, but didn't find it by quick look.)
  15. Mance disagrees with you, I'm afraid. The brothers on the wagons had seen this face as well, Jon did not doubt. No one spoke of it, but the message was plain to read for any man with eyes. Jon had once heard Mance Rayder say that most kneelers were sheep. "Now, a dog can herd a flock of sheep," the King-Beyond-the-Wall had said, "but free folk, well, some are shadowcats and some are stones. One kind prowls where they please and will tear your dogs to pieces. The other will not move at all unless you kick them." Neither shadowcats nor stones were like to give up the gods they had worshiped all their lives to bow down before one they hardly knew. Ygritte on the other hand claims that Craster, a self-proclaimed godly man who sacrifices sheep and sons, is different from her kind. She punched him again. "Craster's more your kind than ours. His father was a crow who stole a woman out of Whitetree village, but after he had her he flew back t' his Wall. She went t' Castle Black once t' show the crow his son, but the brothers blew their horns and run her off. Craster's blood is black, and he bears a heavy curse." She ran her fingers lightly across his stomach. "I feared you'd do the same once. Fly back to the Wall. You never knew what t' do after you stole me." I think Mance's scorn of the kneelers may show another way which makes the archmaesters sheep (besides Marwyn the dog being in position to herd them) when combined with what Sam says of maesters. "My lord, my f-f-f-father, Lord Randyll, he, he, he, he, he . . . the life of a maester is a life of servitude. No son of House Tarly will ever wear a chain. The men of Horn Hill do not bow and scrape to petty lords. Jon, I cannot disobey my father." That said, I don't know how much credence one should give to Mance and Ygritte when it comes to this. Jon gets that sheepskin cloak when he mingles with them, and they might be herded by the Others, something which Mance actually doesn't like of. I've seen that sort of thinking voiced before, and find it interesting myself. I think it would be consistent with how the Others seem to behave. The wildling rubbed his mouth. "Not here," he mumbled, "not this side o' your Wall." The old man glanced uneasily toward the trees in their white mantles. "They're never far, you know. They won't come out by day, not when that old sun's shining, but don't think that means they went away. Shadows never go away. Might be you don't see them, but they're always clinging to your heels." "Did they trouble you on your way south?" "They never came in force, if that's your meaning, but they were with us all the same, nibbling at our edges. We lost more outriders than I care to think about, and it was worth your life to fall behind or wander off. Every nightfall we'd ring our camps with fire. They don't like fire much, and no mistake. When the snows came, though . . . snow and sleet and freezing rain, it's bloody hard to find dry wood or get your kindling lit, and the cold . . . some nights our fires just seemed to shrivel up and die. Nights like that, you always find some dead come the morning. 'Less they find you first. The night that Torwynd . . . my boy, he . . ." Tormund turned his face away. The one time we do see the Others come in force is at the Fist... right after Mormont announces the plan to attack the wildlings, which I think actually could cause some real damage, like killing Mance. Which in turn could potentially unravel the entire host. And it seems to me there is one advantage the wildling host has over a massed attack by the Others: the living wildlings would not be affected by the magic of the Wall. There are flaws in what I just said, though... the wildlings may be less disciplined and not as well armed as the Watch, but there's a lot more of them, and they know better than the Watch how to fight the Others. So what may look like a directing the wildling host might actually be just a lack of strength.
  16. I actually think there's something to be said of the sheep and smallfolk. But while I don't know whether that interests you, I'd like to point out the connection between Mirri Maz Duur and Marwyn. They both live among sheep - the maesters and the Lamb Men. Marwyn is the mastiff, while Mirri is a godswife... a dog and a priestess. Makes me think shepherds. Marwyn also mentions a poison in the porridge. That captures my attention for two reasons: porridge is made of crops, the yield of the land, which ties to the motifs of agriculture, harvest, fertility... and the misfortunes brought upon the fertile land by the war. The second reason is that poison, and the color grey, remind me of death. The sheep go well with this agricultural motif, in my opinion. Also, as you mentioned wearing wool, well, what are the maester's robes made of? But when talking of sheep, I'm reminded of significance of the sheep in the religion, especially Christianity. It's a sacrificial animal, tied to the suffering and innocence, and the flock of faithful is also likened to sheep, as is the Christ himself. Who suffers more in the series than smallfolk does? Naturally, with all this talk of sheep, smallfolk, shepherds and religion, one probably should be mindful of the existence of the Sparrow movement. Well, that came to mind.
  17. Is there a better alternative? Jon actually weighs his options for a reader to see. "As you will." Jon nodded to Iron Emmett. "Please take Lord Janos to the Wall—" —and confine him to an ice cell, he might have said. A day or ten cramped up inside the ice would leave him shivering and feverish and begging for release, Jon did not doubt. And the moment he is out, he and Thorne will begin to plot again. —and tie him to his horse, he might have said. If Slynt did not wish to go to Greyguard as its commander, he could go as its cook. It will only be a matter of time until he deserts, then. And how many others will he take with him? "—and hang him," Jon finished. I don't think this line of reasoning really conforms to the ideal of justice... it should be blind, and people should not be punished for what they might do in the future. The primary function of the NW, however, is not to act as a court of law, or as a penal colony... it is a military organisation, and its raison d'être is not to mete out justice, but to protect the realms of men. If it were otherwise, then how could anyone be forgiven for their crimes even if they wished to take the black? Jon thinks Slynt would undermine this mission, at the time in which the Watch is already understrength and recently suffered heavy casualties at the hands of a supernatural enemy not seen in several millenia. If Slynt's behavior truly warrants a death penalty, then I think there's a reason to choose execution over some other form of punishment.
  18. Hmm-m. That semi-canon sample mentions a score of private wars, as well as broken men (along with outlaws and robber knights) plaguing the land... and those guys don't come from nowhere. So yes, in absence of contrary evidence, there seems to have been serious fighting. The thing is, Tywin was sent to court after Genna's betrothal, and was only knighted in the eve of the Ninepenny Kings' war (Kevan on the other hand squired for the Red Lion). Still, I'm not aware of anything which would prevent Tywin from being a part of Egg's expeditions... he might've squired for Dunk for all I know. This is the quote I was referring to. (AGoT Catelyn VIII.) Robb drew a map across the table, a ragged piece of old leather covered with lines of faded paint. One end curled up from being rolled; he weighed it down with his dagger. "Both plans have virtues, but . . . look, if we try to swing around Lord Tywin's host, we take the risk of being caught between him and the Kingslayer, and if we attack him . . . by all reports, he has more men than I do, and a lot more armored horse. The Greatjon says that won't matter if we catch him with his breeches down, but it seems to me that a man who has fought as many battles as Tywin Lannister won't be so easily surprised." I don't know about you, but my original inclination was to think larger-scale actions. Either way, reading the world book, it seems like the experience from the Ninepenny Kings' war might have legs. Tygett is mentioned to have killed a man in "his first battle", and Tywin is described as "hardened by battle" afterwards.
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