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Julia H.

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About Julia H.

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    Teaching the Common Tongue to Dothraki medicine men and women

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  1. @frenin To recapitulate: I stated that the argument Ned "doesn't think of Aerys unfavorably either" is not true and provided two quotes where Ned's negative feelings / thoughts about Aerys come through. (Since then it has turned out that there are other quotes.) In the first one, Ned recalls Aerys's cruelty by recalling a cruel action (committed against Ned's nearest and dearest). You disagree that this counts as negative feelings / thoughts, and if I understand you correctly (which is by no means sure) your argument boils down to either that expressing judgment on a person's character cannot happen through describing their actions or that Ned never does so. If it is the first, it goes beyond the interpretation of this novel, and I disagree with it in general. If it is the second, then I must wonder on what basis we could say that Ned never expresses character judgment by referring simply to someone's actions when apparently we can see that he does (and I provided another example, unrelated to Aerys, from the book). You provided quotes where Ned wishes someone dead etc., and those quotes express Ned's hatred for the person, but the idea that Ned can only express his negative judgement on someone's character in ways he does in those (two?) examples is rather strange. In the second quote that I provided Ned makes a reference to Aerys as someone responsible for child murder. I claim that calling someone in effect a child murderer counts as expressing a negative opinion, especially when we exactly know how strongly the speaker is against the murdering of children. You call this argument circular but fail to demonstrate how it is circular (which makes me doubt that you know what circular means). In any case, I stand by my opinion that the quotes in question express a negative opinion on Aerys. Just to make a few other things clear: What I do not claim is that every time Aerys's name is brought up in his thoughts Ned expresses a negative opinion on him. Of course not. Sometimes he thinks of him casually, his thoughts are focused on other things, Ned is not obsessed with Aerys. But that does not negate the negative opinion on Aerys that he expresses elsewhere. I also do not claim or think that Ned has a burning hatred for Aerys in AGoT. I find it rather probable that he had this burning hatred after he found out what had happened to his brother and father, at the time when Aerys was demanding his head, when his whole life was turned upside down. But Aerys paid for his actions with his life, then 15 years passed. I do think the original hatred has cooled off by the time we see Ned in AGoT. Having moved on, however, does not mean that he cannot have a negative opinion or negative feelings about Aerys - it does not have to be the kind of burning hatred that Robert still has for Rhaegar. We can see that he still associates Aerys with despicable actions and he refers to him sometimes when he needs a negative example. In other words, there are instances where Ned thinks of Aerys unfavourably on page (while he does not think of Rhaegar that way). I suppose you have already presented your best arguments regarding those two quotes, so I suggest let's agree to disagree.
  2. Sure, he can have different feelings about Aerys killing children and a defeated and killed Aerys. I don't see any problems with that. Perhaps he did once, but I don't think specifically the quote in question says this. Eddard's feelings are centred on Tywin. I thought you and I agreed that Jorah wasn't telling Dany blatant lies about her family. So his praise of Rhaegar must have been told essentially in good faith. Fine. No, it's not. I never claimed Ned used expressions of hatred regarding Aerys all the time. What I claim is that it is not true that he never has negative thoughts about Aerys. Not totally neutral. He does not dwell on how terrible Aerys was, because Aerys is dead, and Ned has other things to think about. But when he links Aerys with child murder, his disdain for Aerys couldn't be clearer. By contrast, he never has a comparable statement about Rhaegar. Except that there is nothing circular about it. All right, so Ned recalls a sadistic action and we can be sure that he finds it totally normal and has totally neutral feelings about the person responsible for it. The description of a person's character does not necessarily happen through the use of adjectives, it can also happen through describing the person's actions. "Tell me, my honorable Lord Eddard, how are you any different from Robert, or me, or Jaime?" "For a start," said Ned, "I do not kill children." Ned doesn't reply with a bunch of adjectives to describe the moral difference between him and the Lannisters and Robert, he uses an action (killing children) to highlight that difference. The author does not add any specific markers to emphasize that Ned is now thinking ill of child murderers. Nor does Ned need to add an explanation that child killing is bad etc., his judgment is still rather clear here, even though he only points out something that they did.
  3. There is emotion in Ned's thought there beyond just narrating a historical event. What Aerys did is very different from Ned's approach to execution: Aerys added unnecessary cruelty to it both by the method of the execution and by forcing a father to watch it. Ned does not need to think "oh, how immoral this was!" for the perceptive reader to know how he judges Aerys. (That is not the way how people recall traumatic or otherwise negative events in their thoughts.) There are more ways than one to give expression to your opinion. Here Ned makes Aerys responsible for a cruel action, that's clear enough. As I said, there are more ways than one to express dislike. Jorah and Tywin are alive, while Aerys is dead, so why would Ned have thoughts of what should happen to Aerys or what Ned would or wouldn't do in connection with him? Well, we know what Ned thinks of people who kill children. Once we know that, on the one hand, killing children is one of the greatest crimes in Ned's eyes and, on the other hand, that he makes a connection between Aerys and killing children, it does not require much effort to see that Ned must have a very bad opinion of Aerys. The parallel would not be kidnapping and raping, of course, but causing the premature death of a young girl in a violent way. No, here he does not express his opinion of Aerys, he expresses his thoughts on the Lannisters and the immediate danger they represent. I didn't say that he expressed a bad opinion of Aerys every time he casually thought of Aerys, of course, not. Someone upthread said Ned not having negative thoughts on Rhaegar does not mean anything since he does not have negative thoughts on Aerys either. This is not true. Just the one sentence about associating Aerys with killing children tells volumes about Ned's opinion on Aerys. Wanted Rhaegar to die as Tywin? Erm... Rhaegar died long before Tywin did. Ned here wants Tywin to die. Balon didn't die. He wants Robert to kill Tywin, not to pardon him, hence the parallel with Rhaegar. Sure, telling blatant lies would not be a good idea for Jorah. That's why I think that his praise of Rhaegar is based on facts, i.e., that's what he genuinely thinks or that's the opinion he has heard from other people.
  4. I agree with those readers who say we don't know enough about Rhaegar's actions to judge his character on the basis of those. There is the argument that he started a war and didn't care. We simply didn't know that it happened like that because crucial details are missing. Did he start the war deliberately, did he just do as he liked not caring about the consequences, did he have the necessary foresight to realize what could happen, did he take measures to avoid a war, did he have a plan that should have prevented a major conflict if everything had gone as planned? What knowledge / information did he act on, what were the circumstances he had to deal with, what were the alternatives, and what was his true purpose? Was he really just a love-sick troubadour or was he entirely concerned with the future of mankind or was there something between those two extremes? I don't know how anyone can say he was clearly stupid or obviously irresponsible or that he was single-handedly responsible for a war when we know so little about his plans, about his actions, about the specific circumstances that prompted him to act this way or another, about his knowledge / perception of the situation, about the degree and nature of the involvement of other key characters in those events. Without those details it is rather unfair and premature to pass judgment on Rhaegar's actions and, through them, on his character - I am ready to give him the benefit of the doubt at least. Then we have the opinions of other characters about him to give us some indication on Rhaegar's character. As other readers have noted, Robert alone describes him as a monster but many other characters describe him as a decent enough person. Robert has a clear reason to hate him. In addition, he is the one who killed Rhaegar and who (in his best moments) may feel a degree of guilt about the death of his enemy's children. He describes Rhaegar as a rapist, but his feelings about him wouldn't very likely be changed if he had proof that Lyanna was all willing and happy to go with him. (Besides, we know that a bit of rape is not necessarily beyond Robert himself, and he may not realize how his own attitudes could influence his interpretation of others' actions.) His lingering disappointment (Rhaegar had taken the ideal girl and Robert ended up with Cersei in a loveless marriage), his continuing thirst for revenge even after the man has been dead for years and the need to justify not only the killing of Rhaegar but also the killing of his children all factor into the picture he paints of Rhaegar. Rhaegar's other enemy, Ned, who was similarly hurt by the Targaryens, who also loved Lyanna, participated in the rebellion but has no guilt over the killing of Rhaegar's children, does not express a negative opinion of Rhaegar. It has been brought up above that Ned does not have negative thoughts about Aerys either. This, however, is simply not true. A quick search brought me these two quotes: Brandon had been twenty when he died, strangled by order of the Mad King Aerys Targaryen only a few short days before he was to wed Catelyn Tully of Riverrun. His father had been forced to watch him die. He was the true heir, the eldest, born to rule. (AGoT, Eddard I.) Those are clearly negative thoughts - he thinks of Aerys as the mad king, and he recalls a very cruel action: having a young man strangled and forcing an old father to watch his son's (his heir's) horrible death. And later, this is what he says to Robert: "Robert, I ask you, what did we rise against Aerys Targaryen for, if not to put an end to the murder of children?"(AGoT, Eddard VIII.) This sentence alone disproves the suggestion that Ned does not think of Aerys in a bad light on page. Associating Aerys with the murder of children reflects as bad an opinion of him as Ned can possibly have. The longer quote is this: "Whereas Daenerys is a fourteen-year-old girl." Ned knew he was pushing this well past the point of wisdom, yet he could not keep silent. "Robert, I ask you, what did we rise against Aerys Targaryen for, if not to put an end to the murder of children?" (AGoT, Eddard VIII.) Ned is trying to convince Robert that sending assassins after Daenerys is wrong. Dany is about the same age here as Lyanna was when Robert lost her. Ned could easily say: What did we rise against the Targaryens for if not to put an end to atrocities against children and women? How convenient it would be to draw a parallel between Rhegar's cruelty towards Lyanna and Robert's intended cruelty towards another 14-year-old woman! Yet, Ned does not bring up Rhaegar, but he does bring up Aerys. Ned very clearly expresses a bad opinion about Aerys, but not about Rhaegar. Now, the characters who express favourable opinions of Rhaegar: Dany: She clearly idealizes Rhaegar, yet she never met him, so her knowledge is secondary, most likely coming from two sources: Viserys and probably Willem Darry (possibly also filtered through Viserys). Sure, they are all biased towards Targaryens family members. However, since examining a comparable opinion on Aerys by the same character has been introduced earlier as a possible test of how much that opinion is worth, why not continue with it here. Dany has no idea of how bad a king Aerys was, but nor is her head filled with legends of the merits of her father. She seems to think of him as a very unfortunate king who was badly mistreated and betrayed by his disloyal subjects. While this view shows clear (and perhaps understandable) bias, we can also note that whoever instilled these ideas in her made a clear distinction between Rhaegar and Aerys in terms of role model value. Jorah: It is clearly in his interest to say things that Dany would like to hear, but there could be lots of topics to choose from. His decision to praise Rhaegar in front of her seems like taking a convenient opportunity rather than inventing blatant lies. After all, he could easily tell her lies about the greatness of her father, and Dany would not know better, he could also tell her how much the Targaryens are still loved in Westeros, but he does neither of those. Therefore, it is likely that he is being largely sincere here, at least expressing a valid opinion of Rhaegar. Cersei: I don't think she every noticed anything more than Rhaegar's appearance and his status as a Crown Prince, so she is not a judge of Rhaegar's character. Jon Connington: Comparing his feelings to Cersei's regarding Rhaegar is very unjust. How many men are willing to bring up and give their utmost support to the child of a person they just wanted to have sex with years ago (but never did)? Jon Connington is devoted to Rhaegar , and it is a devotion lasting for long years and prompting him to still live his life for Rhaegar. Such loyalty and undying devotion cannot originate in mere sexual desire, which is long gone after its object has been dead for nearly two decades. It is based on true love (and no, not only in the romantic sense) and sincere, deep admiration for the person in question. It is notable that Rhaegar was able to inspire such lasting devotion. Barristan: I think his opinion is definitely worth paying attention to. He generally seems to be a good judge of character, he is perceptive, he tends to contemplate moral issues, he even questions and analyzes his own choices and actions. He is not Rhaegar's family member, but still knew him quite well, and he probably has information on him the reader does not have. He has a positive opinion of Rhaegar without romanticizing him. Another point that is worth mentioning (and perhaps hasn't yet been) is that Rhaegar's closest friend was apparently Arthur Dayne, who has earned the respect of such different people as Ned and Jaime. This could be another factor that indirectly tells us something about Rhaegar's character.
  5. Looking forward to the continuation... Such as: The New Host? (Up for grabs.)
  6. Let's see: DREAMY CRANE (or some other bird)
  7. It is almost Brynden Rivers, but an n is missing.
  8. You said it was baseless that Mance was the NW's prisoner. It is not baseless, it is based on Qhorin's words. Mance was captured. Qhorin makes it clear how it started. We don't know how exactly Mance was brought up. We know he arrived at the Wall as a prisoner and we know at some point ha became a sworn brother. When he was a sworn brother, he definitely wasn't a prisoner any longer, which is exactly one of my points. However, we don't know about any transitional state between Mance being a prisoner and Mance being a brother of the NW. He may have been regarded as a trainee brother for a time with the obvious expectation that he would take the vow soon. Assuming any other transitional state (where Mance is no longer a prisoner and not yet a - prospective or actual - brother of the NW) is baseless. Very good parallel. When Osha is no longer the Starks' prisoner, she is their servant. She is expected to serve them loyally, in exchange for not being killed or locked up. Actually, she starts serving in the kitchen still wearing irons, a clear indication of captive status. For the irons to be removed, she had to earn trust while serving. Yet, even when she wore the irons no more, I don't think it means she was free to go anywhere she wanted - she had to continue serving, and the irons could have easily been replaced again if she had just given a reason. Mance also started as a prisoner. The only reason why he was trained to be a warrior can be that he was expected to become a man of the NW. The NW wasn't going to train him as a warrior just to let him go back to his people beyond the Wall and use his skills and knowledge of the NW against the rangers. They trained him to become one of their own because they expected him to become one of their own. There were no career options to choose from. If you were brought up in a bakery, you became a baker. If you were brought up in a brothel... and so on. If you were brought up in the NW, you became a black brother. And if you had started out as a wildling prisoner with no connections or protectors whatsoever, then it was a good idea to be especially mindful of the expectations.
  9. If you don't mind me chiming in... I can't see Jon Snow as Siegfried, but I can definitely see him as ... Parsifal.
  10. Well, then it would be the ideal game for you to host.
  11. Or that the answer you give is, in fact, an anagram based on the real answer.
  12. Probably the most useful question.
  13. Could it be like: 1) Which character is Clue #1? 2) Which character is Clue #5?
  14. Based on Qhorin's words (ACoK, Jon VII): "He loved the wild better than the Wall. It was in his blood. He was wildling born, taken as a child when some raiders were put to the sword. When he left the Shadow Tower he was only going home again." Mance was taken, not taken in when he was apparently with a raider party. Merriam Webster: Definition of take (Entry 1 of 2) transitive verb 1: to get into one's hands or into one's possession, power, or control: such as a: to seize or capture physically
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