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R+L=J v.144


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Reference guide

The R+L=J theory claims Jon Snow most probably is the son of crown prince Rhaegar Targaryen and Ned's sister Lyanna Stark.

The Tower of the Hand has an excellent analysis of this theory:

Jon Snow's Parents

And Westeros' Citadel also provides a summary:

Jon Snow's Parents

A Wiki of Ice and Fire:

Jon Snow Theories

Radio Westeros podcast:

A Dragon, a Wolf and a Rose

Frequently Asked Questions:

How can Jon be a Targaryen if ordinary fire burned his hand?

Targaryens are not immune to fire. It's a myth that has been refuted by a list of Targaryens being burned. Danaerys 'the unburnt' was indeed unscathed when she hatched the dragon eggs, but that has not stopped her being burned on other occasions. See this thread on Targaryen fire immunity.

Don't all Targaryens have hallmark Valryian silver-golden hair and purple eyes?

Not all of them: Valarr and Queen Alysanne had blue eyes. Bittersteel, who like Jon was half first men blood, had brown hair. Baelor Breakspear and his son(s) and Jon's own half-sister Rhaenys had the Dornish look (dark hair, black eyes, olive skin). Rhaenyra Targaryen's three sons all had brown hair and brown eyes even though both their parents had light silver-gold hair.

Had Jon Valyrian features, it would give his parentage away: "He had the Stark face if not the name: long, solemn, guarded, a face that gave nothing away. Whoever his mother had been, she had left little of herself in her son." Tyrion got the bit about the mother wrong, though: his mother was the Stark.

If Jon isn't Ned's son, then why does he look so much like him?

Jon looks very like Arya, and Arya looks very like Lyanna. Jon is Ned's nephew, and Lyanna and Ned looked similar.

Ned is too honourable to lie. If he says Jon is his son, doesn't that mean he must be?

Ned tells Arya that sometimes lies can be honourable. His final words, a confession of his guilt, are a lie to protect Sansa. While a lie can be honourable, cheating on his wife isn't, so Ned's famed honour points to Jon not being his son.

How can Jon be half-Targaryen and have a direwolf?

He's also half Stark, through Lyanna. Ned's trueborn children are half Tully and that doesn't stop them having direwolves.

Why doesn't Ned ever think about Lyanna being Jon's mother?

Ned doesn't think about anyone being Jon's mother. If he did, there would be no mystery. He names 'Wylla' to Robert, but we do not see him thinking of Wylla being Jon's mother.

There's a hidden hint at who Jon's mother might be: In chapter 4, Eddard's internal monologue goes "Lyanna ... Ned had loved her with all his heart." and in chapter 6, Catelyn thinks "Whoever Jon's mother had been, Ned must have loved her fiercely".

Why would Ned not at least tell Catelyn?

We don't have a list of what Ned promised to Lyanna, but know he takes his promises seriously. Maybe he promised not to tell anyone. In Chapter 45, Ned is uncertain what Cat would do if it came to Jon's life over that of her own children. If Catelyn knew that Jon was Rhaegar's son, she might feel that keeping him at Winterfell presented a serious risk to her own children. Ultimately, Catelyn did not need to know, so maybe Ned simply chose to be on the safe side.

Doesn't Ned refer to Robb and Jon as "my sons in the very first chapter?

In speech, not in thought. Ned is keeping Jon's parentage secret. He never thinks of Jon as his son: In Chapter 45, Ned thinks of his children "Robb and Sansa and Arya and Bran and Rickon and explicitly excludes Jon from the list. ADwD Chapter 34 has Bran's vision of younger Ned in the Winterfell godswood: "...let them grow up close as brothers, with only love between them," he prayed, "and let my lady wife find it in her heart to forgive..." which not make sense if they are brothers.

Since Rhaegar was already married, wouldn't Jon still be a bastard?

He might, or might not. There was a tradition of polygamy among Targaryens in the past, so the possibility that Rhaegar and Lyanna married is not easily ruled out. A pro-legitimacy argument is this: The presence of the three kingsguards at the Tower of Joy is best explained if they were defending the heir to the throne, which Jon would only be if he was legitimate.

Can we be certain polygamy is not illegal?

Aegon I and Maegor I practised polygamy. In Westeros, unlike a constitutional monarchy, royals are not subject to the law. So if there ever was a law against it, it did not apply to the Targaryens: In Chapter 33 it says "like their dragons the Targaryens answered to neither gods nor men". Examples demonstrate that it was considered an option for Targaryens: Aegon IV and Daemon Blackfyre may have considered it for Daemon, Jorah Mormont suggested it to Daenerys as a viable option, and she said the same about Quentyn Martell.

George R.R. Martin says in this SSM: "If you have a dragon, you can have as many wives as you want". There is also this SSM predating the worldbook.

On Polygamy essay by Ygrain with additions by Rhaenys_Targaryen

Weren't the Kingsguard at Tower of Joy on the basis of an order from Aerys, to guard Lyanna as a hostage?

If so, why would they have apparently made no effort to use this leverage against Robert and Ned? Some argue their Kingsguard vows would have taken precedence and still have required them to leave the Tower to protect Viserys when he became heir -- unless there was another that took precedence [Jon]. Others think they were guarding Lyanna as a hostage at the Tower of Joy. Some say that makes little sense: She would better be kept hostage at King's Landing, and wouldn't require kingsguards to guard her. The mere presence of three kingsguards implies something more important: guarding members of the royal family or maybe the heir.

Frequently suggested readings: At the tower of joy by MtnLion and support of the toj analysis by Ygrain

Isn't there an SSM that says the 3 Kingsguard were following Rhaegar's orders though?

The SSM you may be thinking of is probably this: The King's Guards don't get to make up their own orders. They serve the king, they protect the king and the royal family, but they're also bound to obey their orders, and if Prince Rhaegar gave them a certain order, they would do that. They can't say, "No we don't like that order, we'll do something else."

We know from Barristan, protecting the king is the first and most important of all kingsguard duties. Jamie suggests some other KG to stay with the king when he wants to leave for the Trident and we also learn of a ritual that is performed when all KG meet and the king is guarded by someone who is not from the order.

"Protect vs Obey" is an ongoing subject of debate that is unlikely to be settled until we know more. Either viewpoint is compatible with R+L=J.

Wouldn't Viserys take precedence anyway? Rhaegar died without becoming king, and doesn't the world book call Viserys, not Aegon, Aerys' new heir?

No, in the case of an eldest son dying before the king dies, a grandson comes before a younger son. Even in the case the grandson is yet unborn at the time of death, he would succeed (heir apparent vs. heir presumptive). The world book is written with a Lannister bias (it may be propaganda to undermine Dornish support for the Targaryens) and in hindsight by maesters who have never learned all of what we know from Ned's dreams and memories. If it still turns out to be true... see the next answer.

Are matters of succession just as clear as presented here?

Succession quarrels are a part of medieval power play and even a very clear inheritance could well be contested. So maybe in King's Landing things did happen as the world book says. Rhaegar and Aerys may have been at odds over the succession. Rhaegar told Jaime before leaving for the Trident that he intended to call a council, and The Great Councils of the past have dealt with matters of succession. Who would have accepted such a change is a question worth asking.

Ned is dead. Who's going to tell anyone about it?

Bloodraven and Bran may have learned of it through the weirwood network. Benjen might know. Checkov's Crannogman Howland Reed is the sole survivor of the encounter at the Tower of Joy, and George R.R. Martin has stated he has not yet appeared because he knows too much about the central mystery of the book. "They had found him [Ned] still holding her [Lyanna's] body" tells that there also was someone else besides Howland to find Ned.

Why is this important? What impact can it have on the story?

The careful way the mystery of Jon's parentage was created is reason to believe it's important. What impact it will have on the rest of the series is still unknown.

This theory is too obvious and too many people believe it to be fact. How can it be true?

It is not so obvious to the majority of readers. Some will get it on their first read, but most will not. Readers who go to online fan forums, such as this, still represent a very small minority of the readership. Also, A Game of Thrones has been out since 1996. That's more than 18 years of readers being able to piece together this mystery. Crowd-sourced internet-based mystery solving like this inevitably make solved mysteries seem more obvious in hindsight.

George R.R. Martin is a "breaker of tropes, there can be no hidden prince, it's simply too cliché.

In order to break a trope it needs to be installed in the first place. It is yet unknown what will happen to Jon in the future. Being the son of Lyanna and Rhaegar does not imply the fairy-tale style happy ending associated with the hidden prince trope.

Is there a list of all R+L=J clues that have been found?

There is a list of R+L=J hints, clues and foreshadowing compiled by sj4iy.

Since this theory has been refined so well, will Martin change the outcome of the story to surprise his fans?

He has stated that he won't change the outcome of the story just because some people have put together all the clues and solved the puzzle.

Previous editions:

Please click on the spoiler below to reveal links to all previous editions of this thread

Lyanna + Rhaegar = Jon Thread (thread one)

Lyanna + Rhaegar = Jon Thread (thread two)

The Lyanna + Rhaegar = Jon thread (Part III) (thread three)

The Lyanna + Rhaegar = Jon thread (Part IV) (thread four)

The Lyanna + Rhaegar = Jon Thread (Part V) (thread five)

The Lyanna + Rhaegar = Jon Thread (Part VI) (thread six)

The Rhaegar + Lyanna = Jon Thread Part VII (thread seven)

The Rhaegar + Lyanna = Jon thread, Part VIII (thread eight)

The Rhaegar + Lyanna = Jon thread, Part IX (thread nine)

The Rhaegar + Lyanna =Jon Thread, Part X(thread ten)

The R+L=J thread, part XI (thread eleven)

The R+L=J thread, part XII (thread twelve)

R+L=J Part XXIII (thread thirteen)

R+L=J Part XXIV (thread fourteen)

R+L=J XXV (thread fifteen)

R+L=J v.16 (thread sixteen)

R+L=J v.17 (thread seventeen)

R+L=J v.18 (thread eighteen)

R+L=J v.19 (thread nineteen)

R+L=J v.20 (thread twenty)

R+L=J v.21 (thread twenty-one)

R+L=J v.22 (thread twenty-two)

R+L=J v.22a (thread twenty-two (a))

R+L=J v.23 (thread twenty-three)

R+L=J v.24 (thread twenty-four)

R+L=J v.25 (thread twenty-five)

R+L=J v.26 (thread twenty-six)

R+L=J v.27 (thread twenty-seven)

R+L=J v.28 (thread twenty-eight)

R+L=J v.29 (thread twenty-nine)

R+L=J v.30 (thread thirty)

R+L=J v.31 (thread thirty-one)

R+L=J v.32 (thread thirty-two)

R+L=J v.33 (thread thirty-three)

R+L=J v.34 (thread thirty-four)

R+L=J v.35 (thread thirty-five)

R+L=J v.36 (thread thirty-six)

R+L=J v.37 (thread thirty-seven)

R+L=J v.38 (thread thirty-eight)

R+L=J v.39 (thread thirty-nine)

"R+L=J v.40" (thread forty)

"R+L=J v.41" (thread forty-one)

"R+L=J v.42" (thread forty-two)

"R+L=J v.43" (thread forty-three)

"R+L=J v.44" (thread forty-four)

"R+L=J v.45" (thread forty-five)

"R+L=J v.46" (thread forty-six)

"R+L=J v.47" (thread forty-seven)

"R+L=J v.48" (thread forty-eight)

"R+L=J v.49" (thread forty-nine)

"R+L=J v.50" (thread fifty)

"R+L=J v.51" (thread fifty-one)

"R+L=J v.52" (thread fifty-two)

"R+L=J v.53" (thread fifty-three)

"R+L=J v.54" (thread fifty-four)

"R+L=J v.55" (thread fifty-five)

"R+L=J v.56" (thread fifty-six)

"R+L=J v.57" (thread fifty-seven)

"R+L=J v.58" (thread fifty-eight)

"R+L=J v.59" (thread fifty-nine)

"R+L=J v.60" (thread sixty)

"R+L=J v.61" (thread sixty-one)

"R+L=J v.62" (thread sixty-two)

"R+L=J v.63" (thread sixty-three)

"R+L=J v.64" (thread sixty-four)

"R+L=J v.65" (thread sixty-five)

"R+L=J v.66" (thread sixty-six)

"R+L=J v.67" (thread sixty-seven)

"R+L=J v.68" (thread sixty-eight)

"R+L=J v.69" (thread sixty-nine)

"R+L=J v.70" (thread seventy)

"R+L=J v.71" (thread seventy-one)

"R+L=J v.72" (thread seventy-two)

"R+L=J v.73" (thread seventy-three)

"R+L=J v.74" (thread seventy-four)

"R+L=J v.75" (thread seventy-five)

"R+L=J v.76" (thread seventy-six)

"R+L=J v.77" (thread seventy-seven)

"R+L=J v.78" (thread seventy-eight)

"R+L=J v.79" (thread seventy-nine)

"R+L=J v.80" (thread eighty)

"R+L=J v.81" (thread eighty-one)

"R+L=J v.82" (thread eighty-two)

"R+L=J v.83" (thread eighty-three)

"R+L=J v.84" (thread eighty-four)

"R+L=J v.85" (thread eighty-five)

"R+L=J v.86" (thread eighty-six)

"R+L=J v.87" (thread eighty-seven)

"R+L=J v.88" (thread eighty-eight)

"R+L=J v.89" (thread eighty-nine)

"R+L=J v.90" (thread ninety)

"R+L=J v.91" (thread ninety-one)

"R+L=J v.92" (thread ninety-two)

"R+L=J v.93" (thread ninety-three)

"R+L=J v.94" (thread ninety-four)

"R+L=J v.95" (thread ninety-five)

"R+L=J v.96" (thread ninety-six)

"R+L=J v.97" (thread ninety-seven)

"R+L=J v.98" (thread ninety-eight)

"R+L=J v.99" (thread ninety-nine)

"R+L=J v.100" (thread one hundred)

"R+L=J v.101" (thread one hundred one)

"R+L=J v.102" (thread one hundred two)

"R+L=J v.103" (thread one hundred three)

"R+L=J v.104" (thread one hundred four)

"R+L=J v.105" (thread one hundred five)

"R+L=J v.106" (thread one hundred six)

"R+L=J v.107" (thread one hundred seven)

"R+L=J v.108" (thread one hundred eight)

"R+L=J v.109" (thread one hundred nine)

"R+L=J v.110" (thread one hundred ten)

"R+L=J v.111" (thread one hundred eleven)

"R+L=J v.112" (thread one hundred twelve)

"R+L=J v.113" (thread one hundred thirteen)

"R+L=J v.114" (thread one hundred fourteen)

The "[TWoIaF Spoilers] R+L=J" threads were used to openly discuss spoilers from TWoIaF at the time we needed to protect that information.

"[TWoIaF Spoilers] R+L=J v.1"

"[TWoIaF Spoilers] R+L=J v.2"

"[TWoIaF Spoilers] R+L=J v.3"

"R+L=J v.115" (thread one hundred fifteen)

"R+L=J v.116" (thread one hundred sixteen)

"R+L=J v.117" (thread one hundred seventeen)

"R+L=J v.118" (thread one hundred eighteen)

"R+L=J v.119" (thread one hundred nineteen)

"R+L=J v.120" (thread one hundred twenty)

"R+L=J v.121" (thread one hundred twenty one)

"R+L=J v.122" (thread one hundred twenty two)

"R+L=J v.123" (thread one hundred twenty three)

"R+L=J v.124" (thread one hundred twenty four)

"R+L=J v.125" (thread one hundred twenty five)

"R+L=J v.126" (thread one hundred twenty six)

"R+L=J v.127" (thread one hundred twenty seven)

"R+L=J v.128" (thread one hundred twenty eight)

"R+L=J v.129" (thread one hundred twenty nine)

"R+L=J v. 130" (thread one hundred thirty)

"R+L=J v.131" (thread one hundred thirty one)

"R+L=J v.132" (thread one hundred thirty two)

"R+L=J v.133" (thread one hundred thirty three)

"R+L=J v.134" (thread one hundred thirty four)

"R+L=J v.135" (thread one hundred thirty five)

"R+L=J v.136" (thread one hundred thirty six)

"R+L=J v.137" (thread one hundred thirty seven)

"R+L=J v.138"(thread one hundred thirty eight)

"R+L=J v.139" (thread one hundred thirty nine)

"R+L=J v.140" (thread one hundred forty)

"R+L=J v.141" (thread one hundred forty one)

R+L=J v.142 (thread one hundred forty two)

R+L=J v.143 (thread one hundred forty three)

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Continuing stuff [time line issue regarding Rhaegar's return to KL + the cover story for Jon Snow's identity]:


well, that was supposedly Jonothor Darry, and this whole thing causes actually the Darry contradiction/paradox as it may actually be (one of many) glitches in the time line. Chelsted was supposedly burned only a fortnight before the Sack, and there is no way that Darry was there when that happened and right in time at the Trident to be killed. Attempts to resolve this by assuming Rossart wasn't named immediately Hand after the burning (the dating of Chelsted being burned a fortnight before the Sack is a guess based on the fact that Rossart supposedly was Hand only for a fortnight) have all failed in my opinion as it makes little sense to assume that Aerys would not immediately name the very man Chelsted's successor who was in charge of enacting the very plan Chelsted tried to argue against.

Another problem with this is that Rhaegar would have present and either been able to claim the Handship for himself afterwards, or able to find out about the wildfire plot. More importantly, if Rhaegar had been there, Chelsted could have gone to him first to confront Aerys with the support of Rhaegar - or Rhaegar would thereafter have investigate why the hell his father had just burned his Hand - a man who had been his trusted and loyal supporter for years. That nothing of this sort happened strongly suggests that Chelsted only found out about this around the time of the Trident (that is, roughly a fortnight before the Sack) and that Aerys had the pyromancers fully committed to that plan after Rhaegar had been away. When Jaime recalls the story he mentions that both Rhaella and Rhaegar could have known about the plan but where occupied with the war (Rhaegar) and closing their eyes for years (Rhaella) prior to the burning of Chelsted.

We can resolve this by assuming that Jaime misremembered the burning - the night Chelsted burned he stood guard alone of with some other guy standing in for the absent KG, while the Darry-Jaime conversation took place earlier during another burning and subsequent raping of the queen.

But that's the Darry thing - Rhaegar seems to have returned much sooner from the south as he is mentioned of being in charge of the training of the new Crownlands levies and assembling the army that he eventually led against Robert. The idea that Aerys had assembled an army only for Rhaegar to take command after the army had already left/was on the verge of leaving makes little sense as Aerys would then already have appointed a commander as he could not have known that Rhaegar would arrive in time (or at all).


if Varys didn't give thing another thought he wouldn't make plans that take decades to unfold. He himself faked Jon Connington's death - he would want to make sure what actually happened to the Kingsguard, Lyanna Stark Targaryen (if they were married), and any offspring of Lyanna's by Rhaegar. After all, he had a Rhaegar's eldest son up his sleeve - if Ned Stark intended 'to pull an Aegon' with Rhaegar's son by Lyanna he has to know that. And Ned Stark could easily have arranged such a plot by faking the death of the three Kingsguard and giving them the child to raise it 'until the time is right'. If Varys and Illyrio can do that, others can do it, too. And somebody planning such a thing necessarily would suspect others might have similar ideas, too.

The idea that pretty much nobody knows or suspects who Jon Snow is in reality is very unlikely. At least not among the people who were close to Ned/the rebels and had power and influence at court around that era. That others failed to realize the truth may have simply to do with the fact that lacked important pieces of information (like Catelyn apparently did).

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isn't there an SSM staying that when Rhaegar returned to KL, a new army still needed to be assembled?

Also, we don't know whether Rossart was made Hand the night Chelsted died. It is never stated, and Yandel's account makes it sound like Rossart received the job only after the Trident. There could have been plenty of reasons why Rhaegar did not claim Handship - not upsetting his paranoid father any more than he has to, knowing changes will soon be made anyway, for example. So I don't think we can say with certainty that Jaime misremembered.

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Did I miss anything earth shattering during the last two pages of the last thread? No?

isn't there an SSM staying that when Rhaegar returned to KL, a new army still needed to be assembled?

Also, we don't know whether Rossart was made Hand the night Chelsted died. It is never stated, and Yandel's account makes it sound like Rossart received the job only after the Trident. There could have been plenty of reasons why Rhaegar did not claim Handship - not upsetting his paranoid father any more than he has to, knowing changes will soon be made anyway, for example. So I don't think we can say with certainty that Jaime misremembered.

I don't know why Rhaegar would feel inclined to take the Handship. If he really did think he was coming back from the Trident (and Jaime's rememberance points to that...) and if the plan post-Trident victory was dethroning Aerys, then is taking the Handship really necessary?

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well, the fact that Aerys actually named the very guy Hand whose plan Chelsted was arguing against strongly suggests that Aerys named Rossart at once after the burning of Chelsted (or rather before that - in the very moment he dismissed Chelsted - Hand Rossart may actually have been the one who personally burned the former Hand Chelsted). The whole wildfire plan wasn't fully prepared yet, and Rossart could easily do it and have complete authority over everybody in the city while he was serving as Hand.

Yandel's description makes it very likely that Chelsted was the one who was burned right in time to cause Dany's conception. The time line fits as well with that as Rossart supposedly only was Hand for a fortnight.

Rhaegar would be totally stupid to not claim the Handship. He could use it to install a Regency due to the king's madness. Nothing suggests that Rhaegar actually wanted to depose or kill his father. If he had wanted to do that he could have done so before Robert was defeated as he was actually in command of the army. Trying to do it later would give Aerys time to prepare for Rhaegar's return - wildfire plan, orders to murder Elia and her children should Rhaegar act against his father, and so on. If Rhaegar wanted to go the legal way to take power away from Aerys being Hand would be a perfect way to do that.

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If one doesn't like what is in the books, one can make up whatever story they wish.

No wonder it has devolved into "argument" versus "discussion". :P

And all of this was to point out that Hightower was dispatched after Connington had been exiled (we don't know how long) and Rhaegar returned at least a week before the Trident statement I had made must be in error. If you read carefully you will note that nothing refutes my statement, it is all gaseous discharge. It stinks but has no substance.

I hope that the snarky comments arguments continue.

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isn't there an SSM staying that when Rhaegar returned to KL, a new army still needed to be assembled?

Also, we don't know whether Rossart was made Hand the night Chelsted died. It is never stated, and Yandel's account makes it sound like Rossart received the job only after the Trident. There could have been plenty of reasons why Rhaegar did not claim Handship - not upsetting his paranoid father any more than he has to, knowing changes will soon be made anyway, for example. So I don't think we can say with certainty that Jaime misremembered.

We do know that Barristan and Lewyn were out gathering up the dispersed remnants of Connington's army. I would imagine that there many skirmishes between the forces to make things miserable for both sides, since we don't have any other noteworthy battles until the Trident.

Now, Jaime may be misremembering, but we have no evidence of that, so we must treat his memory as being accurate. Darry is present the night of Chelsted's roasting, but dies at the Trident. There is the fact that the bruises, scratches, and bite marks are still visible when Rhaella leaves that limits the time between Chelsted's roasting and the Trident, not just Darry and Rossart's appointment. Sure Aerys may have delayed in appointing Rossart, but it is wartime, and delaying is costly. Aerys is eager to see all of his wildfire caches in place. Chelsted had discovered the wilfire plot and reasoned, pleaded, begged with Aerys to not go through with it, in the end throwing his badge of office on the floor, leading to his roasting. So, the wildfire plot had been going on for considerable time, not spur of the moment, after the Trident.

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Unmasked Lurker - last thread

The key is that they might investigate -- or they might not. Unless they have a reason to think about it and explore alternative theories -- why would they even both to give it another thought. We cannot assume that Varys thinks to investigate everything that we know to be a mystery. Ned comes back and says they died in battle with honor -- case closed. Why even give it another thought?

I've no doubt Ned's story was investigated. Stannis's remarks about Jon being the son of a Fisherman's daughter, and Cersei's remarks about Jon being born of some dornish peasant Ned rapes or Ashara Dayne all falls too close to some kind of organized search for the truth. The question becomes why Varys couldn't find out enough to risk putting before Robert the question of Ned's faithfulness. The only answer, I think, is Ned has help in covering his tracks and that help almost certainly comes from Starfall. It comes in at least two ways. First, in Wylla claiming to be Jon's mother, and in harboring of Wylla in Starfall for almost two decades. It may also come in the form of Ashara leaving Westeros, and in the story of the Fisherman's daughter that Ser Davos hears in the Fingers.

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I've no doubt Ned's story was investigated. Stannis's remarks about Jon being the son of a Fisherman's daughter, and Cersei's remarks about Jon being born of some dornish peasant Ned rapes or Ashara Dayne all falls too close to some kind of organized search for the truth. The question becomes why Varys couldn't find out enough to risk putting before Robert the question of Ned's faithfulness. The only answer, I think, is Ned has help in covering his tracks and that help almost certainly comes from Starfall. It comes in at least two ways. First, in Wylla claiming to be Jon's mother, and in harboring of Wylla in Starfall for almost two decades. It may also come in the form of Ashara leaving Westeros, and in the story of the Fisherman's daughter that Ser Davos hears in the Fingers.

Sorry but the Stannis remark comes off as rather accidental - IIRC, it goes something like "you haggle like a fishwife, did your father beget you on one?"

Plus, what should there be any investigation? People like to gossip, especially about someone who takes his pride in his honour (in fact, this is explicitely stated in ASOIAF, when they are planning to throw some mud on Stannis). Ned supposedly has a bastard, and a young noblewoman known to have been dishonoured and given birth to a child commits suicide after Ned's visit - such a wonderful juicy bit to spread.

The suggested raped of a Dornish peasant is more interesting because it sounds like Cersei has heard that Ned brought Jon from Dorne. and this might point to the Wylla coverup.

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I guess I have a rougher time in believing in accidents than you do, Ygrain. I think it is a not too subtle hint to the reader that Stannis has heard the fisherman's daugther's tale. Not that he gives a damn, but he has heard it. The interesting thing is why would he have heard it? Why would Stannis Baratheon have heard a tale from the Fingers concerning Ned Stark's bastard? I don't think he was hanging out on the Fingers in the local drinking establishments where one is like to run into such things, do you? No, I think Stannis's resource for gossip is his connection to Robert's small council for about fifteen years.

Cersei's resource for such gossip is like to be through court circles as well. With Grand Maester Pycelle being her own personal source for as much dirt as she wants to hear. Clearly she has heard the soldier's tales of Ashara that Cat hears when she gets back to Winterfell, but she hears more. She hears of a dornish commoner that could be Jon's mother. She hears of Wylla, even if she doesn't know that name. The fact both Stannis's and Cersei's rumors hint to small council sources points, I think, to an investigation by Varys in the early days of Robert's rule, sometime after Ned brings back the tale of Lyanna's death, and, of course, when Westeros is first learning Ned Stark has a bastard son. The fact nothing happens beyond that strongly suggests Varys doesn't get any information he can tell Robert to show anything other than what Ned has already told him. In other words, both Ned and the people of Starfall are whistling the same tune, with Wylla the star whistler.

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the story about the fisherman's daughter comes from the Three Sisters, not the Fingers, but Stannis could still have it there as Lord Borrell confirms that Stannis was in Sisterton during his time as Master of Ships. But the fisherman's daughter story doesn't sound like something that was made up to hide the truth. I rather imagine the fisherman's daughter liked Ned, wished they had had an affair, and the tale grew in the telling after Ned Stark had had a bastard whose mother was effectively unknown.

And if Lord Borrell can bore Stannis with this tale about Jon Snow's origin so could some other Sisterman have told the same story about Jon to Stannis.

I'm also not sure Varys would have had a motive to tell Robert anything about Jon's heritage had he had evidence or hints. After all, this would only have endangered the life of the boy, and we know that Varys is strangely kind to royal bastards (Gendry and Edric Storm). More importantly, he could use this story to his advantage to eventually recruit Ned Stark to Aegon's cause. Varys is trying to sneak up to Ned in AGoT, and I imagine he was quite impressed by Ned's resistance to Robert's plans to murder Viserys and Daenerys. In that regard it is also strange/noteworthy that we never get a chapter of Varys' second visit in the black cells. Ned's last chapter in the series has him undecided what to do - that he is confessing we see later only in Arya's chapter. Perhaps the threat to Sansa's life wasn't enough, perhaps Varys and Ned had another conversation about other things. We don't know that yet.

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so V.143 is gone and all those opinions with it? is this how this forums works???

No, it is still there: R+L=J v.143 . All previous issues of the R+L=J thread are usually listed and linked in the spoilered part of the first post - aka OP.

a dude wonders if his older posts are gone for goodie ?!

A dude is spamming the thread :)

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I don't know why Ned's story would have been investigated. Men father bastards all the time during war (and peace). Yes, some might think it odd that Eddard Stark did such a thing, but they'd believe that his honor dictates that he bring the babe home.

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It is not that Ned Stark's bastard would have been investigated, it is that people like Varys would have wanted to know what actually to the three knights and Lyanna, and whether there were any offspring of Rhaegar and Lyanna. And the fact that Jon Snow's mother was not exactly a well-known woman (and that there existed conflicting stories - Wylla, Ashara Dayne, the fisherman's daughter) would have been a very big hint for a master player of the game that something might be amiss there.

Varys does not have to have proof to know the truth. If we can figure out what was going - mostly by citing a dream as evidence - then those in-universe characters who would have had a lot more information on Rhaegar and Lyanna than we have right now should have reached the same conclusion in a heartbeat. The very fact that Lyanna and Rhaegar had sex suggests the possibility of offspring. The Wylla story doesn't hold any water if you look closely unless we assume that this woman actually spent time with Ned around the time Jon Snow was conceived. After all, when Ned told the Wylla story to Ned he would also have been able to mention the place and time he fell for this woman. If Wylla's legend was the fisherman's daughter story then this could actually somewhat fit as Jon would have to be conceived around the time of the beginning of the Rebellion to be born at its end.

But if this Wylla woman was actually at the tower or in Dorne the whole time then she would actually be no good fake mother for Jon Snow. Ned has also to place the story about Jon's conception into a time period in which he wasn't hanging out with Robert or else the latter would have later asked why he hadn't seen her back then (i.e. it could not have happened in the Vale or later in the Riverlands when Robert and Ned were reunited). That would leave only the North or the way up there (fisherman's daughter story). But the North in itself is very unlikely as such a legend could be easily questioned by Ned's own bannermen and subjects, not to mention that it would be very complicated to uphold. A woman in the North would have been a Northern woman, and there would be a huge question mark as to why nobody knew that woman.

That only leaves Ned's southern campaigns, but for him to father Jon after the Sack makes pretty much no sense unless he spent roughly a year down in Dorne following the Sack. This does not appear to be the case.

Ashara's involvement in all that seems to be about zero as her pregnancy could easily have been used as a smokescreen for Lyanna's child - keep her stillbirth a secret, and pass Lyanna's child as Ashara's bastard by Ned Stark. Problem solved. Yet since Barristan Selmy actually knows Ashara gave birth to a stillborn daughter - and he was never actually close to the Daynes despite his secret love, so he can't have special or secret knowledge there - she is effectively out of the race as Jon Snow's real or fake mother (unless, of course, we assume Ashara and Ned had the chance to meet each other again after Harrenhal and her stillbirth to conceive a new child - but considering that Ned was in the Vale this very unlikely).

More importantly, every observer would have to realize that Ned Stark's alleged bastard came from a place in the south - i.e. perhaps even directly from Starfall, as Edric Dayne was nursed by Wylla which means she eventually returned from Winterfell to Starfall and may still be living there. It is quite unlikely that Wylla - if she was a Dornishwoman, which should be the case if she was in service to the Daynes - could keep that fact a secret making it quite obvious that Jon Snow's mother must have Dornish connections. Not to mention that the journey from Winterfell to Starfall is not exactly short or easy which means Ned Stark could not have hidden Wylla's return from interested parties. Not to mention that it should be very odd to send a common wetnurse back to the castle in which she previously served. Journeys are expensive, after all, and Old Nan apparently never left Winterfell after she arrived there to fulfil the same duty as Wylla. Why the exception for Wylla?

Unless we invent some elaborate background story for Wylla I find it increasingly unlikely that she hung out at the tower. How or why would a woman in service of the Daynes be there? If the knights/Lyanna were in need of a wetnurse why not look for one in the mountain folk/castles nearby. Contacting Starfall about that would mean they were making huge plans in advance instead of, well, moving Lyanna to a location where both maesters and wetnurses were already present to assist in the birth and subsequent nourishment of mother and newborn.

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