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Jaak

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  1. Ah, but Cersei is ALSO trying to kill Tyrion. As far as legally clearing Sansa to marry... a poison in wine in Meereen, or a crosbowman, would be useless for Petyr. A nameless corpse rotting in Slaver´s Bay would prevent Sansa from ever marrying. Whereas procuring a plausible fake head - Petyr knows it´s fake but Cersei does not - right in Westeros would be precisely what Sansa does need.
  2. Jaak

    Uses of dragons

    Valyrian Empire did not confront a dragonriding opponent except during civil wars. There are important differences. On ground, scout is a highly dangerous assignment. Outriders may confront superior enemy forces and obstacles, and not return. Unlike the fighters in their massed force. For dragonriders, scout is a safe job, certainly for the rider. As long as the rider and dragon can obey the basic instruction to stay above bowshot, no one can hurt them. If a scout is ill trained, like a seven year old girl who comes back to blab excitedly about her experience of flight, of hills, rivers and forests, but turns out to have missed militarily relevant details, like signs of which banners armies on ground are flying, how many men and horses, which roads show signs of being muddy... she´s still not in danger. And that´s an occasion to give her some explanations and training, that she would be even more useful when she is 18, or 8. You would not want a 7 year old girl on a small dragon with short fire range in direct fight either - she´d be in reach for even javelins.
  3. Jaak

    Uses of dragons

    And how well the dragon is trained to understand human affairs - and how well the human is trained to understand what the dragon may be wanting to communicate to him or her. After all, dragons definitely cannot talk. Ill trained dragonrider might well fly past an army and not notice it, or notice it and misidentify it (incorrectly assume it is an allied force when it is hostile, or vice versa).
  4. Jaak

    Uses of dragons

    We also see three dragonriders neglecting scouting at Tumbleton for multiple days. With the known speed of 400 miles per day (attested in the flight of Jaehaerys and Alysanne), any of the three could have carried out a scouting flight to King´s Landing and back in a day. Leaving the army behind, for if the army were to resolve to march, it would take a week. If the remaining black dragons (Syrax, Tyraxes, Seasmoke, Sheepstealer, Caraxes before the news of its fall) did carry on scouting, the Green scout might just return having seen that Blacks are on alert. But simple one way trip, Tumbleton to King´s Landing and back, might not spot a Black Riverlanders army approaching by a different route. If Daeron spots hills, rivers and castles at a longer distance to keep track of where he is, but an army would be spotted at a distance of 5 miles, then a 400 mile full day flight would cover 4000 square miles. Which is about the size of a circle 35 miles radius. More than a day´s march... but not much more than two days march. So... if Daeron (a young boy) or either of the dragonseeds (inexperienced, illiterate, any signs of particular smarts?) had been paying attention - could one dragonrider make it impossible for an army to make a surprise attack on his camp while he is out scouting, by detecting an approaching army first?
  5. Jaak

    Uses of dragons

    We do hear of simple races. Meleys vs. Caraxes vs. Vhagar (Meleys used to win), and Caraxes vs. Syrax, King´s Landing to Dragonstone and back.
  6. Jaak

    Uses of dragons

    And there is the generic worry of Dragonpit stunting dragons. But the dragonriders are liable to be unfit. Not just physically (Alysanne became such through arthritis), but mentally, in the sense of not knowing how to exploit the powers of dragon. How good is a dragon for playing hide and seek with dragons? When Aegon confronted Balerion on Quicksilver and died for that, Rhaena on Dreamfyre had no better idea than hide her children and camp on Fair Isle waiting for the inevitable. Whereas Alysanne and Jaehaerys, just 8 and 10, with Silverwing and Vermithor who were even younger (both expressly hatched in rider´s crib) successfully vanished for four years and were never heard from, not even after their reappearance. Some years later, Rhaena had no problems vanishing for months (though unlike Alysanne and Jaehaerys, she was sometimes seen). Had she known to do it before, she´d have saved herself and her children a lot of heartbreak. Dreamfyre vs. Balerion&Vhagar and Silverwing&Vermithor vs. Balerion had an edge that Dreamfyre vs. Silverwing&Vermithor did not share. They were smaller. Yes, say Balerion can fly 400 miles in a day. But so can Dreamfyre. It does Maegor little good to fly 400 miles in pursuit of Dreamfyre and pass within 50 miles of Dreamfyre without being aware where Dreamfyre is. If Maegor can see Dreamfyre from distance of 5 miles and Balerion is 5 times bigger than Dreamfyre then he might rip Dreamfyre apart... but Rhaena can see Balerion from distance of 25 miles. Balerion needs 40 minutes to cover the 20 mile distance from where Rhaena sees Balerion to where Maegor would see Dreamfyre, and meanwhile Dreamfyre would take off in a different direction, so Maegor would cruise on having seen nothing.
  7. Where is absence of such established?
  8. King Berengar I of Italy ruled from Pavia, which was a city. Not a big city, mind you - having been capital of Italy for 400 years had not made Pavia overshadow nearby Milan, and both were as yet far overshadowed by Rome. The Saxon society led by King Otto I in Palace of Werla, unaccompanied by a city, was the one who could march men over Alps and crown Emperors of Holy Empire. Even when, in 11th, 12th, 13th century, cities did grow up in Germany, like Cologne, Frankfurt am Main, Nuremberg... none of them became a permanent Capital of Kaisers. It was only in 17th century that Kaiser finally got a capital in Vienna.
  9. I dislike the theory of Targaryens having sold Valyrian swords at a large scale. Basically because themselves ended up with only two attested swords.
  10. Jaak

    Uses of dragons

    Still effective. What can the armies do against a dragon? Like Joffrey coming on Tyraxes... certain not to swoop down to use fire, and Mommy has forbidden him to take risks even if he wanted to. Jaehaerys and Alysanne took 3 days for 1800 km King's Landing to Oldtown. 600 km per day. Assume 12 hours days (the rest sleep, meals and counsel at Bitterbridge and Highgarden) - that makes 50 km/h groundspeed. It makes 10 minutes to cover 8 km (5 miles) after spotting Tyraxes coming low on the horizon, assuming you can spot him 8 km off (can you? Tyraxes is pretty slender!) What do you need to accomplish in these 10 minutes to assure Joffrey flying overhead sees nothing? Everyone under trees, or inside village houses. All open campfires out. Etc. Etc. Too little time to do all this when you actually see Tyraxes. He'll fly to call for Mommy and Syrax (or Sheepstealer, Caraxes, Seasmoke...). So you have to stay under cover all the time because of generic possibility that Tyraxes might show up. And any Green flags must be small enough that you can lower them when you see a Black dragon - before the Black dragon can see a Green flag. This hampers your command and control. And therefore IS effective, in handicapping you by the precautions against scouting.
  11. Jaak

    Uses of dragons

    No. They can be safe, but a dragon is big, visible and identifiable. A dragon can stay unseen - Rhaena demonstrated it after disappearance of Aerea, Aemond when hunted by Caraxes and Sheepstealer - but this could be done by flying low, sticking to sparsely settled areas and shelter of hills and forests. A dragon who is not seen by people does not see people. You need a skinchanger to scout out an enemy stealthily. Even if the enemy is alert to the possibility of being scouted by skinchangers, small birds are harder to see in first place than dragons - and even when seen by suspicious observers, unless the skinchanger is careless and gives away the scouting by excessive unnatural conduct, hard to spot from unskinchanged birds of the same species going about their natural business.
  12. Somewhat based on 15th century England. Few cities - and in those few, no mayors or corporations. Very little in the way of nonhereditary, appointed officials - in capitals or in places. No frequent parliaments. Westeros has called Great Councils after passing a century, we don´t hear of kingdoms having provincial estates either. All of those are much unlike 15th century England. Whereas Carolingian Frankish Empire or Ottonian Germany is more comparable. How does Winterfell compare to Goslar or Werla? Because Ottonian Germany was a military power.
  13. Aachen was not a major city. And that´s the capital of Charlemagne. By far the biggest city in Carolingian Empire was Rome. Which Charlemagne did visit but only briefly. Quentovic was never capital of France. Or how about Pavia? It was a city, as they existed in North Italy... but the presence of Lombard and then Italian court till 11th century did NOT make ot overshadow nearby Milan.
  14. Jaak

    What happened to the Targaryen slaves?

    There is obvious alternative. He was a rich man, and was still going to rich on Dragonstone. He was still going to be served by servants. His existing servants who were slaves were used to him and he to them. Sell them? He would have had to recruit and train new servants on Dragonstone, slave or free. Simply taking his existing house slaves along was the easy default option. Eddard Stark did not go to Red Keep with empty hands, Hand´s chain and a purse of money either to hire new servants from Flea Bottom - 50 guards, Vayon Poole and unspecified number of other unarmed servants did travel from Winterfell to Red Keep.
  15. Jaak

    What happened to the Targaryen slaves?

    It´s not absurd. A lot of slaveowners care about their slaves, or some of them, to some degree. It is entirely possible, and quite common, for a slaveowner to think of himself as a good master compared to some other slaveowners, and think that them is not with slavery as such but with some slaveowners being worse masters than him.
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