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ADDB98

Does anyone else agree that Robb was a bad King?

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Still. The Freys might have been within their rights to refuse cooperation with Robb after the Westerling marriage: but they still owed allegiance to the Tullys, and their duty was to march to the relief of Riverrun, *unconditionally*. When Riverrun was first besieged, there wasn't even the pretence of legality for it: King Robert Baratheon was still alive when Tywin marched, putting Tywin firmly on the wrong side of the law, and it was the duty of every lord in the Riverlands to come to the aid of Riverrun at once. Walder Frey himself overreached any rights he might have, dishonourably so, by refusing to march until he had extracted concessions.

That's the theory of fealty that the noble class puts forward, but in practice the realities of power politics override any such automatic presumption. We see this when Robb calls his bannermen in AGOT - every one is testing him out, challenging his authority, trying to bully and cajole personal advantage out of him. In intent that is no different to Walder Frey sitting back and seeing which way the wind was blowing. Feudal lords are not employees, they're political entrepreneurs in their own rights; in practice it's the success or failure of Frey's gambit that determines whether he is punished for it, not whether oathbreaking is illegal per se.

Shit, you only have to look at thousands of years of Stark vs Bolton, or the humiliations of Lannister at the hands of the Reynes to see the lack of any effective normative prohibitions on vassals sassing, slaying and flaying their liege lords.

Sure, Robb was a fool, and had given Walder Frey something of an insult, that the man frankly deserved: but insults are insults, and murder and treachery are murder and treachery, and nobody has any right to repay an insult with treachery on the scale of the Red Wedding. An acceptable response would, say, have been to refuse to fight under Robb's direct command any further, and insist on being under the direct command of a Tully who was their rightful liege lord, or could represent him - e.g. Edmure or Brynden Blackfish.

This isn't how power works in Westeros, however. Frey's honour has been slighted by Robb's own oathbreaking and since Robb's losing the war Frey has nothing to lose and personal satisfaction to gain by shafting him (this is why Robb's dalliance and subsequent nuptials with Jeyne was bad kingship, not the act of oathbreaking itself).

EDIT: here are some conventions that are genuinely sanctified, so breaking guest right was unnecessary and not the smartest thing to do, self-interest wise.

Though the Theon and Jeyne decisions were huge blunders, I'd argue not getting his plans for the Battle of the Fords completely clear to Edmure is actually the worst mistake. He could have survived the other two if King's Landing had fallen and the Lannister kids were put to the sword, but without that the lure of the Lannister-Tyrell alliance is simply too tempting for Walder and Roose.

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What use is a king who breaks his vows. Oh and he married a Lannister bannerman how stupid can you be.

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Breaking your vows is kind of unavoidable in Westeros. What makes Robb's decision a bad one was breaking his oath to secure the might of House Westerling. If it had been for Margaery Tyrell...


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And this is why an uncontrollable, lustful teenager shouldn't be the leader of an army! Just imagine what Joffrey would've done if Tywin wasn't there to control him!


I don't blame Robb for being horny (we've all been 16 :P) but to marry some lesser lord's daughter while he has thousands of men just because he slept with her for one night?! An utterly foolish mistake, he should've just said forget about the girl and moved on, I mean it's not unheard of for even highborn girls to lose their virginity and not marry the person they lost it to and who cares about some powerless Lannister bannermen?!


I also don't think he should've sent Theon home or kill Rickard Karstark.


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Rob was a good commander.. but a bad King. I think he should have let the greatjon rule until he came of age. He was trying to hard to emulate his father's honour but made rash decisions without seeing beyond his next move.


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Robb never really got to BE king. He was more a benign warlord than a king. He did not participate in administration, formulate laws, dispense justice (beyond the Karstarks and perhaps a few other incidences) or do any of the mundane day to day tasks required of ruling a kingdom.



We only really get to know Robb as leader in the capacity of war. There is a Chinese saying, "You can conquer on horseback, but to rule you must dismount."



Robb was mounted and spurred the whole time metaphorically. He was leader, but he was really only a military commander.



Did he make mistakes? Big time. Did they affect his kingdom? You betcha. He had almost no time to consider ANY of his decisions, to deliberate, to contemplate. Again, he acted as a military commander would act.



And his two main acts of diplomacy: marrying the Frey daughter and sending Theon as an ambassador, both ended badly.



Robb really should have named his mother regent to run Winterfell and the North, or perhaps a trusted vassal as another poster suggested.

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His mother got him the alliance he needed to achieve his military objectives. He then went and quite literally fucked it up.

His mother also told him not to send Theon as an envoy to Balon, he ignored her advice and look how that turned out.

Even if he listened to his mother and not sending Theon to Balon, house Greyjoy will still strike, and he wil still be cut off from home, though Winterfell may not fall.

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Bottom line, and this should pretty much clean this thread up:



-Robb told Catelyn to do anything it took to get across the Twins.



-Catelyn did exactly as she was told, and came back with the terms of the agreement in order to cross.



-Robb accepted those terms by crossing, he never had to cross, but he did, thus accepting the terms of the agreement.



-Robb broke the terms of the agreement, completely ignoring his word and blatantly telling Walder Frey, "fuck off, i crossed your little bridge, and there isn't a damn thing you could do about it."



I don't blame Catelyn for any of this, as she did as she was told, and didn't force Robb to do anything, he did all he did of his own accord and knew everything that was set in front of him.



I do blame Robb, for Catelyn's death.



I don't even blame Walder Frey, nor do I blame Tywin for what happened at the Red Wedding. Walder saw Robb was going to lose the war, and when he received the parchment to allign with Tywin, not only did he pick the winning side, he was justifying a slight that was done to him. In Tywin's eyes, it was a brilliant move, knowing Walder Frey's personality, and the slight Robb had done to cross.



Dont get me wrong, the Freys are scumbags and bastards, but not in this.



Robb would have made a terrible King. He was a green, summer boy with the weaknesses of his age clouding his judgment. He got exactly what someone of his personality and style would have gotten.


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Robb made two grave mistakes. One, letting Theon go back to Pyke. Two, marrying Jeyne Westerling. Both committed against his mother's advice (well not technically in Jeyne's case but still, Catelyn did not like it a bit). Letting Theon go resulted in him taking Winterfell and then of course... made others think Bran and Rickon got "murdered". Marrying Jeyne resulted in some lords leaving and of course the Red Wedding which got him killed.
Honour was another thing. He chose to be honourable to marry Jeyne and not to break off the marriage with the Freys. He also chose to be honourable to execute Lord Karstark when he killed the two Lannister boys, making him lose the strong and large part of his force, the Karstarks. If he chose to be honourable to the Freys and not to the other two cases then he may still be alive and may even win the war.

I also didn't like how he left Grey Wind out there with the dogs and not in the hall like before. He is a Stark and Starks are direwolves themselves. How could he treat his own kind like that? He started to change and forget his origins and blood.

It's all too late now anyway.

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Clearly he made mistakes, but Robb was betrayed so many times. His mother let the Kingslayer go, which allowed for the Red Wedding to even by possible - Tywin never would've risked Jaime in a plot like that. Theon backstabbed his best friend. Walder Frey and Roose Bolton commit a huge taboo/breach of society by breaking the guest right to ambush and slaughter Robb at a wedding. Karstark disobeys his king and forces his hand.



Surely breaking a marriage alliance was wrong, but I tend to look at Robb as really getting screwed by everyone around him, more than I think of his failure with Jeyne.



It took complete and utter treachery to bring down Robb.


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That's an interesting POV and has merit for sure but GRRM himself has stated that Robb brought the Red Wedding on himself by breaking his vow to Walder Frey to marry one of his daughters. He said that one of the main themes in ASOIAF is that choices have consequences and the Red Wedding was the very consequence he used as an example of that.


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Robb Stark was a terrible "king," a usurper, and spoke nothing but treason, and blasphemy in the name of R'hllor.



He was a terrible King. Close this thread. :)


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Catelyn releasing Jaime does zero to make the Red Wedding happen but people have been saying it on this board every year since I joined and long before.


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I chalk it up to him being young and naive. Yes he made some bad decisions, but I also think he made a couple of good ones. He did capture Jamie Lannister after all and never lost a battle. I mean I think that says a lot. And compared to who, because Joffrey was no where close to Robb as far as being a bad King.


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He should never have been declared king

You ser, speak nothing but truths. A beer for you.

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