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Volantene Republican Army

No children in Asshai

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So what's up with this? Anyone have any ideas?



I don't think you could say that this is because anyone 'chose' not to have children, or 'chose' to send them somewhere else. Because, as many rueful new parents will tell you, children have a way of happening whether anyone chooses them or not. In any human population over some time some people will start having children, particularly in the absence of modern birth control.



My own theory is that there's something (magical?) in the environment which is making people infertile. This definitely makes Asshai seem like an evil place.


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Well if their people live forever and use their sexual organs to create smoke babies then that would pretty much explain it.


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Animals are mentioned to die when brought to Asshai. What is the minimum age for people to survive being brought to Asshai? If Mercy were sent to Asshai to carry out an assassination, can she do it or would she qualify as child and therefore die in Asshai without accomplishing her task?


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I think that there are no children in Asshai because it's not a normal city but kind of studying and practicing magic place. Like Citadel is place only for maesters to learn. Asshai probably was a normal city at some point but it was destroyed/poluted by disaster or some magical event so no one except "magic conected People"want to live there

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The city being home to the most depraved kinds of magic rituals - which would obviously include the sacrifice of infants - would explain why the visitors, chroniclers or sailors that have visited the city would report there being no children: all urchins, orphans or runaways are clearly sacrificed. In the meantime children who are not slaves could be kept quite hidden.



Related to this. If the city's very air is toxic it is possible the Asshai'i are sterile and babies die just like animals, forcing the city to import slave children. Thus, slave children that show potential for magic (like Melisandre/Melony) are raised to become whatever their masters are. This cycle would've lasted so long that all Asshai'i are descendants of this imported apprentices. It would also explain why Melisandre has "western" features.



Perhaps what is in the air also causes the eyes some Asshai'i to become red.


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There are different probabilities:

1-Mommy and Daddy Asshai'i keeps their children at home because that place is fricking terryfing and dangerous due all kinds of sorcerery.

2-Pregnancies magically fails in Asshai. Must be due the air.

3-It's a city of learning with no real natives. Children are too young to study magic.

4-They send their children to somewhere else to grow up because magical energy is bad for them.

5-It is not true and just a claim made by a drunk sailor.

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It's very clear Asshai is no place to raise a child for a number of reasons. The water glows green, the fish appear to be deformed by what we would call toxicity, food is scarce. Most importantly, nothing is forbidden. Considering the city is basically populated by practitioners of magic, if a parent cared at all for the survival of their child they'd get him/her the hell out of there.


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Makes me think of whatever the Others' capital city is.


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Because apparently Asshai is a nightmare place and we should never ever go there.


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So, we're saying Shiera really is Melisandre, that she took the slave child Melony's body in a magic ritual to maintain her youth? That, like any skinchanger/warg, some of Melony was retained in the mind?


Sweet.


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We know that slaves exist in Asshai: some go around in sedan chairs carried by slaves.


And slaves must be expensive in Asshai: they need to eat and drink as much as free folk, and food and water must be imported.


If parents are reluctant to bring their own children to Asshai, how about child slaves like Missandei?


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I presume the magic renders people sterile.

Does not address the question of children brought to Asshai.

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Someone on another thread asked about real world equivalencies to Asshai. The only city I could think of with no or few children was the Vatican City! Make of that what you will. :)

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I see alot of people talking about native asshai here and elsewhere. My impression from the world book was of a transient population attracted by gaining magical knowledge or wealth. No indigenous population at all.

As for the rest. Combination of a magicaly unhealthy place, and not somewhere you settle down to make babies.

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Compare Sothoryos:

study of centuries of travelers’ accounts suggests that nine of every ten men visiting Sothoryos from Westeros will suffer one or more of these afflictions, and that almost half will die

1/2 chance of survival, and 1/10 of remaining healthy.

And yet:

A score of small trade towns cling to the northern coast—towns of mud and blood, as some say: wet and humid and full of misery, where adventurers, rogues, exiles, and whores from the Free Cities and the Seven Kingdoms come to make their fortunes.

Adventurers and rogues go there in face of the odds, and stay there for whiles - and whores follow.

Masked shadowbinders of Asshai might go up river Ash and fornicate with demons... but merchants, miners and artisans of Asshai might be reluctant to go up Ash, and to mate with demons even if they meet them. Sothoryos has local women, too - they produce no viable offspring, but the men would get laid. Yet whores go to Sothoryos. If whores are willing to go to Sothoryos then there should be whores seeking their fortunes in Asshai, too. So what is the outcome? No conception? Miscarriages? Live births, but babies die in cradle?

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