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The Unnatural Origins of Dragons


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I think the oily black stone is related to the Deep Ones, and not the Ancient Dragonriders. I just read the section on Asshai again, and I didn't see any mention of the stone being oily. The stone is black, and it seems to drink the light, and it's greasy to the touch, but it doesn't mention it being oily.

This. Greasy black stone is linked Lovecraftian Deep Ones and strange mutations while the fused black stone is tied to dragonfire. Which begs the question- is there a lode of the greasy stuff at Mantarys causing the mutations the city is famous for?

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This isnt a bad thread at all, defintely looking at some of the right things. Having said that....

1. The origins of dragons is left as one of the more uncertain things, whether the Valyrians simply discovered them, bred them, or had them brought to them or some type of knowledge brought from an older race/civilization; i would lean towards the breeding but that opens up further questions and either way i dont think its clear at this point

2. TPTWP is generally accepted to be Jon around here, we know he's a warg, i defintely dont rule out the possibility of him and or Bran warging one at sme point. That does NOT = the 3 heads of the dragon being some reference to tptwp need to warg a dragon; the 3 heads = 3 people, and the only reason i even comment this is because there are some good things being looked at in the OP, but you still landed on what is a wrong and largely propagated concept on these boards that the 3 heads doesnt = 3 individuals and its just some metaphor for diffrent aspects of one person

(and im of the mind Barth is almost always right, not always always)

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It is interesting to think, but I have to disagree. Certainly GRRM is aware of Terry Brooks' Shannara series? It is also a magical place with elves, dwarves, trolls, and many other things. But at the same time, it is the world of our future, hundreds of years after the Great War that took place in our time.

I agree, it would be just bad writing to re-use the overspent "planet of the apes" trick.

GRRM is too good a writer not to realise it.

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I need to add this to the Asshai-Valyrians hypothesis, the only two Asshai'ese people I remember (Melisandre and Quaithe) do not look like Valyrian-traited at all.


Quaithe's features are nearly entirely hidden, and she's a shadowbinder.

Melisandre is very very likely under some sort of near-permanent glamour, and is a shadowbinder.

And there arent Asshaii' treats because people aren't born in Asshai for the most part, the implication is people come there 1.for trade 2. to practice magic, which they presumably learn from others who have come and settled there before them for the same purpose, not from some native Ashhai race of people

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  • 2 months later...





·   Septon Barth is always right.

·   Valyrians created dragons by crossbreeding firewyrms and wyverns.

·   The process required serious bloodmagic.

·   It is not known why exactly they practiced incest. Dragon creation, production and maintenance were complex business. Claiming that incest was practiced only to ride dragons is oversimplification. I think that producing dragons is a much more complex and important process than riding one.

·   It is possible that there were dragons before Valyrians rose to power but it is unknown whether they were like the Valyrian dragons or not. There is no way to prove that a dragon existed before Valyrian Age just by examining its remains without modern methods like carbon dating in Westeros.

·   Sphinxes are perfect examples of the unnatural origins of dragons.

·   Considering the origins of the Citadel and their early association with the CotF, it is highly possible that the legends about the sphinx have some nugget of truth in them. It is possible to force different species of animals to mate with each other. By using magic, hybrid creatures can be produced and skinchangers can wear their skins.

·   The head of the dragon as in “the dragon has three heads” is related to skinchanging and wearing the skin of that dragon.

·   TPTWP must be a skinchanger and wear the skin of the dragon.

·   It is possible that the magical boon the LH sought from the CotF is related to creating a supernatural beast and using it to defeat the Others. The Lightbringer looks like a dragon. Considering the origin of the tales like the Winged Knight, I think it is possible that the LH married a CotF and their son, who had the gift, skinchanged into a hybrid creature (dragon) by which he led the humanity to victory against the Others. That child was the Lightbringer.



Can't believe I missed this thread. Great stuff. Your conclusions reflect my thoughts and some of my findings on this subject. I would like to share a few ideas I've been playing around with.


The sphinx / riddle of the sphinx

I see the Oldtown sphinx as representing the final result of a series of human/dragon merging experiments  via breeding and 'genetic engineering'. I've been trying to figure out how this could have been achieved and my scenario would be something along these lines:


  • The creation of a fire-breathing dragon capable of flying by breeding firewyrms with wyrms
  • Skinchanging into the three animals mentioned - serpent, lion and eagle. This is where it gets tricky because the actual goal is a merger of the spirits of the three animals. We know that a skinchanger takes on the nature of the creature he inhabits:


Other beasts were best left alone, the hunter had declared. Cats were vain and cruel, always ready to turn on you. Elk and deer were prey; wear their skins too long, and even the bravest man became a coward. Bears, boars, badgers, weasels … Haggon did not hold with such. “Some skins you never want to wear, boy. You won’t like what you’d become.” Birds were the worst, to hear him tell it. “Men were not meant to leave the earth. Spend too much time in the clouds and you never want to come back down again. I know skinchangers who’ve tried hawks, owls, ravens. Even in their own skins, they sit moony, staring up at the bloody blue.


  • We also know that the spirit of a skinchanger merges with that of the familiar animal after his death. So we have a human spirit merged within the animal. This is also reflected in the parts of soul (CotF and Orell) residing within ravens / Orell's eagle. 
  • We need three such spirits - a merged serpent-human spirit, human-lion spirit, human-eagle spirit. 
  • So. .. the basis is a skinchanger or three (I suspect three different skinchangers) who inhabit their familiar animal long enough to acquire its traits or aspects.
  • The individual spirits need to be released and captured. This is done by burning the skinchangers alive - burning drives spirits out of the body.
  • The spirits are then captured and bound by a shadowbinder. Perhaps shadowbinders also merge the spirits into one - not sure about this, or how it's done.
  • The merged spirit is then transfered to a human body - but this body must also have the trait (blood of the dragon) to be able to take the spirit on board. 
  • Perhaps the merged spirit was originally housed in some other animal prior to transfer, e.g. a horse. MMD's ceremony is an example of how
  • the the horse's spirit is transferred to man - by means of a blood ritual - "strength of the horse, go into the man".
  • The child receiving the merged spirit of course has a soul of his/her own. In the case of the blood of the dragon, this soul / blood may or may not be tainted by madness.
  • In any case, if conditions are right, the souls merge. 


The above steps are a model for how putting together the sphinx can be achieved but in the real world, we of course do not see blood rituals etc. everytime a a dragon egg is placed in the cradle of a Targaryen baby.

The process is obviously refined so that all these steps occur automatically. I can only speculate on how this could work.


First, I suspect it is the man who passes on the merged spirits to the woman during sexual intercourse - (the idea of a man giving his soul when he gives a woman his seed and Mel's example of birthing shadow babies). 

Perhaps there is a repository of merged souls that inhabit men with the 'blood of the dragon' trait. Sometimes the man's blood is tainted or unclean / or the spirits are tainted because of prior blood magic in their creation (skingchangers acquiring a taint through a blood ritual - also part of my essay on warging and skinchanging). When this happens, the woman bearing the child gives birth to a malformed, reptilian-like baby, which already has the merged spirit but cannot survive because of the taint. 


So how would the merged animal spirits enter the human body? 

  • First this involves 'singing' which is a form of summons - the creature sings to the human to determine if the human has the blood of the dragon (we see this with Dany and her dragon dream - the dragon sings to her).
  • Singing establishes a bond between the two.
  • The next step involves opening the spiritual third eye, through which a spirit may pass (this is probably where the unicorn comes in - the third eye is also known as the 'Eye of the Unicorn'. 
  • The dragon spirit can now merge with the human spirit but it remains dormant until the dragon spirit is woken. A complete merger with a fully woken, mountable dragon is now achieved.
  • But there's one step remaining, also represented by the human head on the body of the sphinx - control. The human spirit must control and dominate the animal spirit. This is done by physically subduing the dragon, as demonstrated by Dany in the pit. She dominates Drogon with her voice and whip, ordering him to leave off attacking her and to get down. There's no riding or controlling the dragon without establishing control over it, woken or no. After that, the process is complete. The dragon rider no longer needs a whip to control and guide the dragon.

Most of these steps can be extracted from Varamyr's prologue chapter (ADWD). I've done a breakdown of them in my essay on warging and skinchanging.


I also suspect this is where the thing in the night comes in - four souls enslaved by a monstrous shadow spirit. Three dead and the fourth gone mad (madness being an occasional taint). Note also that the fourth 'prentice boy is not killed. He just goes mad. 



The taint or the mark


You mentioned the tattooed lizards in the jungles of Sothoryos. All the stuff I've been looking at suggests that the slave tattoos represent marks or taints associated with the rituals involved in creating Others and Dragons. We have tears, wheels, flies, flames etc. The flames are obvious - the burning sacrifice (to release spirits). 


Throughout the books we have four examples of (Valyrian) sphinxes, each of which probably represent a major stage or breakthrough in the process. I really like your observations on the Cotf hunting as man and woman because I suspect that originally, this merging of spirits was only possible with the female sex. A lot of the blood magic (spiritual genetic engineering) involved was necessary because men also wanted this ability. 



The Harpy


This brings me to the Harpy, also a form of sphinx. The harpy represents the sphinx relating to Other creation. The Sons of the Harpy symbolize the Others themselves. My guess is the Others were created to near perfection during the Long Night and you may be right when you speculate that the CotF provided a recipe for the creation of dragons to counter them. Dragons really are the only effective weapon against Others, that's plain. That said, I also think that the CotF provided the know how to create a counter-Other - one that could controlled by the 'resistance' and be used to herd wights away from man. The keepers of the means to these counter-Others are the Starks. They are the insurance in the north, that's why there must be a Stark in Winterfell and the whole idea lends credence to speculation of a dragon beneath Winterfell. They are the keepers of both 'weapons' - yes, I like this :)

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  • 2 months later...


The Great Empire of the Dawn i think were Giants/CotF, the Valyrians having descended from them. This would fit with the speculation in TWOIAF that the Asshai had first tamed them and then taught this lost art to Valyria before parting this world. I think the warging part is just essential to riding dragons, something Dany hasn't fully realized yet. This is what i believe is the importance of the Blackwood blood being in the Targaryen line. Also why the first Dayne marriage into the Targaryens didn't produce a dragon hatcher, which the family is lacking at this point. It goes like this, Aegon V realized that there was something important about Bracken/Blackwood blood and hence the marriages. It didnt work though as the combination was wrong, and the only one who got the blood, couldn't be legitimized, Bloodraven. Bloodraven caught on to this though and thus began Bloodravens long mission, to complete the blood puzzle to bring back dragon hatchers.

  • Aegon the V marries Bethany Blackwood, inserting her genes into the ruling Targaryen line. 
  • Aegons children Jaehaerys and Sheira go back to incest, reaffirming the X gene into the family and passing it down to their kids,. 
  • Aerys and Rhaella are forced to marry and produce Rhaegar, Who has both Targaryen and Blackwood blood TyBx. This is important.
  • Rhaegar hooks up Lyanna and they have Jon. Jon getting Targaryen Y and Stark X. Lyanna coming from 2 starks having SxSx.
  • Aerys hooks up with Joanna and they have Tryion. Joanna comes from 2 Lannisters, so Tyrion gets TyLx.
  • Now, Dany. Dany i think is the child of Rhaegar and Ashara Dayne. Thus giving her the Blackwood X from Rhaegar and the Dayne X from Ashara. Blackwoods who used to rule in the north as kings till the Age of Heroes and the Starks is the original Warging blood, the ones the Starks likely got it from. The Daynes are the origins of the Valyrians, but alone lack warging powers. These two ancient lines are needed to create the Dragon Hatchers as i believe. Starks and Lannisters are off shoot families that appear later in the Age of Heroes while the other two families are older.

Howland Reed goes to the Gods Eye and speaks with Bloodraven before the events of the Tourney of Harrenhal and all the mysterious events that led up to Dany and Jons births. Bloodraven i believe has been slowly orchestrating these events, Varys is one of his i believe as they both do what is good for the realm and both seem to help. (I know every one thinks Vary's plan is F/Aegon, but i dont, i think thats Illyrio's plan.) Bloodraven i dont think is fighting for one side or the other as some believe, i think he's fighting for the middle ground. The peace between fire and ice, and Dany, Jon, and Tyrion are just pawns in this dance of his. Further more, Dany, Jon, and Tryion all only meet certain aspects of the Azor Ahai prophecy, while each lacking at least one feature. Dany lacks the sword for instance. Its the 3 together that kinda makes it, but really, the three are guided by bloodraven and even their conceptions influenced by him likely. That being said, is Blood Raven Azor Ahai? The one that will bring the peace. He lingers for all of man kind Leaf say's. Just some thoughts.

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