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Ok.  On a more serious note, we were discussing name meaning up-thread. 

 I swear I read once that the name John/Jon meant "God has promised," as in God promised his mother (Elizabeth?) a son.  Now I can't find any such translation anywhere. :(  I thought that would be a cool tie-in to tPtwP.

Another potential bible influenced name is Aurion.  Apparently, "aurion" is a (Hebrew?) phrase meaning "on the morrow."  Literally, it means "on the morning breeze."  If my understanding is correct, one could also interpret "aurion" as meaning "at dawn."  Dawn was the "new day" after the Long Night.  However, the only Aurion we have in ASoIaF died after the Doom (another major disaster) trying to reclaim Valyria.  So, not sure what the connection would be.

(See translation here: http://biblehub.com/greek/839.htm)

Aurane (which in our world also means "breeze" or "morning breeze") is perhaps derived from the name Aurion in story.  Jacaerys is the Velaryon form of Jaehaerys, and Lucerys is a name specific to Velaryons.  (Perhaps while the Velaryons were away from Valyria, they began to form their own dialect?)  Anywho, the point is that Velaryons have been known to take Valyrian names and give them their own twist, and Aurane might be their "twist" on Aurion.

I have more ideas than conclusions unfortunately.  "Aurion" being in the bible was a recent find, and I found it worth noting.  Hope y'all find that interesting. 

Edited by Isobel Harper

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1 hour ago, LmL said:

This will come as bad news to Lem :lol:

Well, GRRM did name him Lem Lemon Cloak.  Maybe he was trying to point out the anagram?  (Eeewww.)

 

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6 hours ago, Isobel Harper said:

The only anagram I can find for lemon cakes is semen cloak.   :o

http://wordsmith.org/anagram/anagram.cgi?anagram=lemoncakes&language=english&t=1000&d=&include=&exclude=&n=&m=&source=adv&a=n&l=n&q=n&k=1

As fun as anagrams can be, I've noted before that they can also be misleading and easily manipulated. If there is wordplay around lemons, I think it has to do with melons: Ser Dontos hits Sansa over the head with a melon and a melon rolls out of the helmet of Oppo/Groat during his fake beheading at the joust at Joffrey's wedding feast. Other than being part of the larger fruit motif that runs through the books, I'm not sure what the lemon / melon wordplay might mean.

Edited by Seams

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Eyrie / eerie

The seat of House Arryn is a desolate castle located at the top of a mountain surrounded only by air and the peak of the mountain from where Alyssa's Tears drop towards, but never reach, the ground below (i.e. there's sadness even in the sunniest and warmest day).

The first impression we get of the Eyrie is Catelyn's POV. She notices something anomalous about it:

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The Eyrie was a small castle by the standards of the great houses [...] Yet it seemed strangely deserted to Catelyn as she  passed through it, its pale stone halls echoing and empty.

While imprisoned, Tyrion gives us his impression of the sadistic nature of the builders of the Eyrie, regarding the lack of walls in the cells

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The Arryns kept the only dungeon in the realm where the prisoners were welcome to escape at will.

And of course, the culmination of this aversion to heights and the threat of a gruesome death by falling is the Moon Door. Remember Sweetrobin's favorite phrase: "Make him fly".

Later, Sansa as Aleyne gives us a more insightful view of the Eyrie. Still, it is depicted as desolate and the isolation that emerges from it

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The Eyrie was no home. It was no bigger than Maegor’s Holdfast, and outside its sheer white walls was only the mountain and the long treacherous descent past Sky and Snow and Stone to the Gates of the Moon on the valley floor. There was no place to go and little to do.

Even when well-lit with sunshine, the castle seems strangely eerie

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Shafts of pale daylight slanted down through narrow arched windows along the eastern wall. Between the windows were torches, mounted in high iron sconces, but none of them was lit. Her footsteps fell softly on the carpet. Outside the wind blew cold and lonely. Amidst so much white marble even the sunlight looked chilly, somehow...

 

Edited by Blackfyre Bastard

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17 hours ago, Seams said:

I'll have to think about this. Connecting "pay" to "pain" in the books would require that the phrase, "Lannisters always pay their debts" fit into the motif. I'm always on board with additional layers of meaning for important phrases and symbols and passages, so maybe this would work as a third layer for the Lannister motto.

Indeed; I had actually intended to mention the Lannister motto in this context, although I neglected to do so.  How do Lannisters mostly pay their debts?  In blood: by inflicting 'ill and pain' (Il 'n Payne?) on others!  It's no coincidence that one of their main allies in doing so is a 'Pay-ne.'  Regarding the 'le bon pain' vs. 'ill pain' pairing, the Lannisters prefer stingily withholding the former while generously doling out the latter.  Significantly, the King's Landing 'bread riots' took place under Lannister tenure. 

17 hours ago, Seams said:

This is excellent! I spent a little time searching the bread references, and bread always seems to be good - people want it; it's nourishing; it's fresh and warm. Even when it's stale, it can be used as a trencher. So it makes sense that there is good pain (bread) and bad pain (the kind that happens when Ser Ilyn chops off your head).

On attempting to flee the Red Keep, Arya encounters the two aspects of the 'pain' in the kitchen -- how fitting -- the baker and the butcher side by side:

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A Game of Thrones - Arya IV

Sobbing, Arya spun and ran.

She plunged through the kitchens and buttery, blind with panic, weaving between cooks and potboys. A baker's helper stepped in front of her, holding a wooden tray. Arya bowled her over, scattering fragrant loaves of fresh-baked bread on the floor. She heard shouting behind her as she spun around a portly butcher who stood gaping at her with a cleaver in his hands. His arms were red to the elbow.

What's more, one person's 'bad pain' can be another person's 'good pain'!  This is the point I was making above regarding the Lannister economy, whereby inflicting 'bad pain' on others actually serves to nurture them.  Cersei, Tywin, and Tyrion all seem to feed off the 'bad pain' of others, simultaneously seizing control of the 'bread basket' of the kingdom for themselves (the Tyrell alliance which brought the fertile Reach under Lannister control, together with the decimation of the Riverlands' farming and transport infrastructure) -- who controls 'le bon pain' controls the kingdoms.  Whenever they do see fit to 'feed' others, it usually takes the cynical form of 'Singer's Stew' or mushrooms in a shoe.

17 hours ago, Seams said:

In my initial post about pain / le pain, I had completely forgotten about the whole discussion of flour / flower / flow earlier on this thread. Ramsay is the son of a miller's wife; Ramsay gets Theon blamed for killing the miller's boys (represented as Bran and Rickon). Bran is even a type of ground seed or grain, so that is a perfect fit. And we had Arya's flashback scene with Jon Snow covered in flour, scaring baby Bran in the crypt (with Robb's help). So the sacrifice motif is established by connecting the sacrificial kings to flour, not directly to bread. Very good.

Nice catch with Bran as a type of grain!  (That one, though obvious now that you mention it, seems to have flown over my head)  All types of grain are potential symbols of sacrifice and rebirth, including bran, barley, wheat, corn and rye (remember that the blackbirds or 'naughty boys' who were baked in and then flew out of the pie of the evil ditty 'sing a song of sixpence' which we discussed previously were associated with a 'pocketful of rye').

Ultimately, the sacrificial motif is linked to the seed -- it all comes back to 'the seed is strong' which I still find very mysterious (what do you think Jon Arryn meant by it?)  

Encompassing many of these ideas, there's the traditional folk song of John Barleycorn dating since the 16th century, from which I'm sure GRRM drew inspiration (he even includes a character 'Tom Barleycorn' in the Night's Watch).

Then there's this rather ominous reference:

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A Feast for Crows - Alayne II

"The Lord of the Eyrie cannot descend from his mountain tied up like a sack of barleycorn." Of that Alayne was certain. They dare not let the full extent of Robert's frailty and cowardice become too widely known, her father had warned her. I wish he were here. He would know what to do.

 

17 hours ago, Seams said:

Finally, while we're on the subject of trees consuming people with its relation to baked goods, I wonder if there's an additional wordplay at work relating to your previously identified anagrammatic pair of 'deserters'/'red trees', namely of 'desert' with 'dessert'

Now we'll have to examine lemon cakes as symbols of desertion!

Nice work, rr. I always feel as if I've been on every ride at the carnival after reading one of your posts. There's some great wordplay stuff in this one.

Thanks Seams!  Likewise, I always enjoy your posts.  You never fail to open up rich new seams of possibility in a sometimes otherwise barren landscape :).  By the way, although I don't always comment, I've read and been inspired by many of your posts.  Recently, for example, I came across an excellent one speculating on Patchface as Robert Baratheon, something to which I'm not partial but for which you nevertheless presented an imaginative case.  It's a pity no-one replied to your post; I'm still very intrigued by Patchface...ha ha, as if I hadn't written enough on that topic...  'Carnivals' above water are one thing; 'carnivals' below another set of 'wild rides' entirely!

Regarding 'lemon cakes,' I see Isobel Harper and LmL are having a bit of fun turning sweet into decidedly unsavory..!  In this respect, the unwitting, budding anagrammatists might actually be closer to the mark than they had intended, since lemon cakes are a kind of oxymoron being sweet and sour at once, the sugar possibly masking the acid undertones and therefore alluding to a certain underlying conflict and/or attendant hypocrisy at work in any scene in which the lemon cakes are inserted and consumed.

Indeed, 'lemon cakes' (which it occurs to me rhymes with 'snakes'!) might be a case of someone 'trying to have their cake and eat it too', in other words avoiding having to make a hard choice between two irreconcilable options or parties that inevitably results in a disappointment and having to choose one over the other anyway, even if this choice is made unconsciously or by default, e.g. by cowardice.  Incidentally, the color yellow -- the color of a lemon and certain 'cloaks'-- has traditionally been associated with cowardice, treachery and 'deserters', including by GRRM explicitly:

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A Dance with Dragons - The Spurned Suitor

The hour of ghosts was almost upon them when Ser Gerris Drinkwater returned to the pyramid to report that he had found Beans, Books, and Old Bill Bone in one of Meereen's less savory cellars, drinking yellow wine and watching naked slaves kill one another with bare hands and filed teeth.

"Beans pulled a blade and proposed a wager to determine if deserters had bellies full of yellow slime," Ser Gerris reported, "so I tossed him a dragon and asked if yellow gold would do. He bit the coin and asked what I meant to buy. When I told him he slipped the knife away and asked if I was drunk or mad."

"Let him think what he wants, so long as he delivers the message," said Quentyn.

For example, I can think of at least one clear case of 'lemon cakery' that is directly related to disloyalty and 'desertion', followed by the des(s)erter in question getting her just (and rather bitter) de(s)serts!  Allow me to present to you the queen of lemon cakes, Sansa Stark:

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A Game of Thrones - Sansa I

Arya ignored her. She gave a hard yank with the brush. Nymeria growled and spun away, affronted. "Come back here!"

"There's going to be lemon cakes and tea," Sansa went on, all adult and reasonable. Lady brushed against her leg. Sansa scratched her ears the way she liked, and Lady sat beside her on her haunches, watching Arya chase Nymeria.

 

The foreshadowing here is so sad.  At this point in her life, Sansa still believes that she can have Lady as well as the other 'lady' in question -- Cersei.  But, as Arya correctly informs her the queen is not a nice person, nor does she like wolves.  So -- if it comes down to a choice between lemon cakes and Nymeria -- Arya's choice is clear.  And it's not because Arya is not tempted nor has no taste for lemon cakes; her taste for integrity is just more developed than her sister's:

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A Dance with Dragons - The Ugly Little Girl

Still as stone, she thought. She sat unmoving. The cut was quick, the blade sharp. By rights the metal should have been cold against her flesh, but it felt warm instead. She could feel the blood washing down her face, a rippling red curtain falling across her brow and cheeks and chin, and she understood why the priest had made her close her eyes. When it reached her lips the taste was salt and copper. She licked at it and shivered.

"Bring me the face," said the kindly man. The waif made no answer, but she could hear her slippers whispering over the stone floor. To the girl he said, "Drink this," and pressed a cup into her hand. She drank it down at once. It was very tart, like biting into a lemon. A thousand years ago, she had known a girl who loved lemon cakes. No, that was not me, that was only Arya.

There is a difference between 'lemons' and 'lemon cakes.'  Whereas 'lemons' signify an unpleasant awakening -- represented here by Arya's experience of 'third-eye' opening which undergoes rapid progression in various forms throughout her apprenticeship at the HOBAW -- nevertheless this revelation of the lemon at the 'heart of true seeing,' as Syrio termed it, is somehow more honest than sugar-coating the truth.  'Lemon cakes' are therefore similar to lies, particularly self-deception, although the lies may be initiated by another -- lemon cake as garden-of-Eden-type-serpentine seduction!  Persuading someone to become a deserter or turncloak often involves offering them an enticing dessert, which as we can see is Littlefinger's modus operandi presenting Sansa with rare fruit platters and 'sweets' in the Eyrie -- a bit of 'pie in the sky' there I'd say..! 

'Lemon cakes' should never be taken lightly, as the Old Bear reminds us:

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A Storm of Swords - Samwell II

"The m-maesters think not," Sam stammered. "The maesters say it comes from the fires of the earth. They call it obsidian."

Mormont snorted. "They can call it lemon pie for all I care. If it kills as you claim, I want more of it."

So, uncompromising truth-tellers and down-to-earth pragmatists like Mormont and to a certain extent Arya (were it not for that flighty wolfbloodedness) see lemon pies for what they are.  In the regrettable Trident episode, Sansa, however, doesn't want to admit the possibility of being separated from her wolf by falling in with the lemon-cake-plying Lannisters.  This oversight -- basically choosing symbolic 'lemon cakes' over her own family's interests -- leads to one Lady's death essentially at the hands of another less ladylike lady.  Cersei is the 'sourpuss' beneath the saccharine facade.  Not recognising it in time is a deadly proposition, as Sansa tragically discovers to her detriment.

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"Why would you want to ride a smelly old horse and get all sore and sweaty when you could recline on feather pillows and eat cakes with the queen?"

"I don't like the queen," Arya said casually. Sansa sucked in her breath, shocked that even Arya would say such a thing, but her sister prattled on, heedless. "She won't even let me bring Nymeria." She thrust the brush under her belt and stalked her wolf. Nymeria watched her approach warily.

A Game of Thrones - Sansa I

Sansa couldn't help but smile a little. The kennelmaster once told her that an animal takes after its master. She gave Lady a quick little hug. Lady licked her cheek. Sansa giggled. Arya heard and whirled around, glaring. "I don't care what you say, I'm going out riding." Her long horsey face got the stubborn look that meant she was going to do something willful.

"Gods be true, Arya, sometimes you act like such a child," Sansa said. "I'll go by myself then. It will be ever so much nicer that way. Lady and I will eat all the lemon cakes and just have the best time without you."

She turned to walk off, but Arya shouted after her, "They won't let you bring Lady either." She was gone before Sansa could think of a reply, chasing Nymeria along the river.

We all know how the story unfolded from this point on.  Sansa's aversion to face the truth lurking behind the lemon cake led to her lying by omission in front of the court, a betrayal of the Starks which in turn led to her losing her wolf.  Mormont was right -- lemon cakes can kill!  She got her 'just deserts or desserts' for being a 'deserter' to the clan and paid the price, leaving her with a very sour or bitter taste in her mouth.  

You would have thought Sansa would've learnt from this experience.  Perhaps her eyes were opened regarding the Lannisters.  This insight notwithstanding, she seems to be hellbent on recapitulating the 'lemon cake' pitfalls with Littlefinger, and having been groomed by him and Cersei, learnt how to ply the same trade herself on others, manipulating Robert Arryn here for example:

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A Feast for Crows - Alayne II

"Will they be lemon cakes?" Lord Robert loved lemon cakes, perhaps because Alayne did.

"Lemony lemony lemon cakes," she assured him, "and you can have as many as you like."

"A hundred?" he wanted to know. "Could I have a hundred?"

Is the repetition of 'lemony lemony' supposed to reinforce the idea of 'le money' in connection with lemon cakes?  Persuading someone to become a deserter of sorts -- here she's trying to persuade him to abandon the stronghold of the Eyrie in which he feels safe for an uncertain fate at the base of the mountain -- often involves an element of seduction as I've mentioned, or indeed bribery.  This feeds back (pun intended) into our discussion of pain and payment.

Edited by ravenous reader

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4 hours ago, ravenous reader said:

Regarding 'lemon cakes,' I see Isobel Harper and LmL are having a bit of fun turning sweet into decidedly unsavory..!  In this respect, the unwitting, budding anagrammatists might actually be closer to the mark than they had intended

Yeah...  I just recalled that fruit seems to represent sexuality at least twice in Sansa's arch.  The first example is in the Dontos scene that Seams mentions above, with the melon juice running down her face and onto the front of her dress.  The second example is on the Fingers when LF offers Sansa a bowl of fruit.  She chooses a pear, whose juice runs down her chin.  (Side note : while I think pears represent sexuality, it seems to also be potentially connected to conception and/or motherhood.  Specifically, I'm thinking of Daenerys finding Viserion wrapped  a coil around a pear tree.)

I meant "semen cloak" as a joke, obviously.  Maybe this is just a coincidence. 

ETA: I often say that Sansa's love for lemon cakes symbolizes her need to "sugar" the truth and see things through rise colored glasses, so to speak.  I enjoyed reading your analysis of lemon cakes. 

Edited by Isobel Harper

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On 10/18/2016 at 3:21 PM, ravenous reader said:

... How do Lannisters mostly pay their debts?  In blood: by inflicting 'ill and pain' (Il 'n Payne?) on others!  It's no coincidence that one of their main allies in doing so is a 'Pay-ne.'  Regarding the 'le bon pain' vs. 'ill pain' pairing, the Lannisters prefer stingily withholding the former while generously doling out the latter.  Significantly, the King's Landing 'bread riots' took place under Lannister tenure. 

Your points are persuasive - there does seem to be a pain / Payne /paying connection! Nice job.

On attempting to flee the Red Keep, Arya encounters the two aspects of the 'pain' in the kitchen -- how fitting -- the baker and the butcher side by side...

...  Cersei, Tywin, and Tyrion all seem to feed off the 'bad pain' of others, simultaneously seizing control of the 'bread basket' of the kingdom for themselves ...  Whenever they do see fit to 'feed' others, it usually takes the cynical form of 'Singer's Stew' or mushrooms in a shoe.

I really like this point, too. I had already noted somewhere long ago that many major high-born characters, such as Arya, Jon and Theon, put in time as servants once they are caught up in the events of the plot. But the Lannisters never have to learn that kind of humility, do they? Tyrion tells Penny that he is not a cook (although he jokes about singer stew). But he meets a cook on the boat who plays cyvasse with him, has books in the galley and who ends up dying exactly the kind of death that Ser Jorah says is the most awful way to die (a splinter in the eye). I suppose you could make the case that Tyrion becomes a slave, and that is at least as humbling as being a servant. Oh wait! I forgot that Joffrey makes Tyrion his cupbearer at the wedding feast. But look how that turns out for Joffrey. Food is such an important motif, so there must be something significant about the fact that the Lannisters don't serve food to others.

Nice catch with Bran as a type of grain! ...

Ultimately, the sacrificial motif is linked to the seed -- it all comes back to 'the seed is strong' which I still find very mysterious (what do you think Jon Arryn meant by it?)  

I am very intrigued by Jon Arryn's dying words. It's like "Rosebud" in Citizen Kane. What does it mean, and will we ever find out? I did notice a Bran line as he is leaving Winterfell with the Reeds and Hodor, where he observes that, "The stone is strong." I wonder whether we will find a series of statements about things that are strong, and we need to put them together in order to sort out the individual meaning of eatch?

 

Regarding 'lemon cakes,' ... At this point in her life, Sansa still believes that she can have Lady as well as the other 'lady' in question -- Cersei.  But, as Arya correctly informs her the queen is not a nice person, nor does she like wolves.  ...

There is a difference between 'lemons' and 'lemon cakes.'  Whereas 'lemons' signify an unpleasant awakening ... 'Lemon cakes' are therefore similar to lies, particularly self-deception, although the lies may be initiated by another ...

... she seems to be hellbent on recapitulating the 'lemon cake' pitfalls with Littlefinger, and having been groomed by him and Cersei, learnt how to ply the same trade herself on others, manipulating Robert Arryn ...

This rings true. Sansa may have never had a real lemon in her hands - she thinks of lemon as something that arrives in a cake with lots of sugar to take away the sourness. Early on, my sense was that lemons were something only highborn people craved, so they were a symbol of the upper classes. Sansa's early desire to marry the heir to the throne would fit well with her passion for lemon cakes. But I don't know what Sweetrobin's craving for lemoncakes might represent, except that he has a crush on Sansa.

I might try to compare the lemon and lemoncake cravings of the upper class characters (I agree with the theories the Lem Lemoncloak is Ser Richard Lonmouth) to Septon Meribald's ministry distributing oranges to the small folk.

 

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53 minutes ago, YOVMO said:

@Seams I was surprised you didn't pick up on my "Where do Hoares go" topic. Figured it was right up your alley

I did look at it, but I couldn't think of an answer to your question. But it was a very clever title. And that surname may reflect a deliberate clue by GRRM . . . You never know!

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On 10/17/2016 at 4:48 PM, ravenous reader said:

@Pain killer Jane has pointed out that 'lamprey' is a pun on 'lamb prey'...

It is also a play on another theme; Lamp ray. Specifically the Crone's Lantern shining in the darkness and the constellation of four stars that enclose a golden haze. That is a Davos quote from aSoS. I especially love that scene because he looks out of the northern window and sees a half moon, the Galley sailing West, the Crone's lantern enclosing a yellow haze and the Ice Dragon's eye pointing North. And hell if I know what all of that means especially when Dunk calls the same group of constellations old friends like Davos.

Edit: and while Lamp ray is not indicative in and of itself, lamprey are called eels and you can equate them as water snakes and thus leviathans which @LmL explained in his newest essay and finally as drowned dragons. Which is the forging of Lightbringer. So a lamp ray in the darkness is lightbringer. Which has slightly conflicted symbolism, that AA/PTWP is supposed to be the avatar of Rh'llor the God of Light and Shadow but the light from the nightfires helped to obscure Mel and Davos when she went to birth the shadow baby but Davos in the same scene above uses the hearth fire to chase the shadows back to their corners.

 

On 10/17/2016 at 4:48 PM, ravenous reader said:

Of course, the lapin (the rabbit), like the pain (the bread) is sacrificed in the interests of regeneration and resurrection.

In Asian mythology, the rabbit in the moon pounds the elixir of immortality for the moon goddess. In other versions, it pounds rice cakes. And rabbits while being symbols of fertility and thus them being equated with immortality fits as procreation is nature's form of immortality. And it fits in the story as well. 

Tyrion III, aCoK

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"I like my tale better," said Littlefinger, "and so will the smallfolk. Most of them believe that if a woman eats rabbit while pregnant, her child will be born with long floppy ears."

Bran II, aCoK

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Leobald Tallhart had his turn the following day. He spoke of weather portents and the slack wits of smallfolk, and told how his nephew itched for battle. "Benfred has raised his own company of lances. Boys, none older than nineteen years, but every one thinks he's another young wolf. When I told them they were only young rabbits, they laughed at me. Now they call themselves the Wild Hares and gallop about the country with rabbitskins tied to the ends of their lances, singing songs of chivalry."

In both of these, rabbits are equated with procreation. The first one more than the second. Lances are just as swords often equated to the penis. So the Wild Hares tying the dead rabbits to their lances, is a little on the nose for death and life.  And can we stop and say something about their names; the Wild Hares. First off the group thinks of themselves as young wolves thus probably mimicking the Winter Wolves. Secondly they are named Hares not Rabbits. Hare = hair. Them tying skins on their lances also mimics the Unsullied of Qohor (a city with a horned animal as its patron god) tying hair on their spears. Plus they sing 'songs of chivalry', those lovely summer knights that Catlyn spoke about. Edit: can I also point out that Benfred is drowned by Aeron.

Also there is a scene in Jon III, aCoK where Ghost eats a rabbit and he meets Gilly, who right off the bat is identified as being pregnant. 

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The body under the sewn skins was showing in the early turns of pregnancy. "Are you one of Craster's daughters?" he asked.

She put a hand over her belly. "Wife now." Edging away from the wolf, she knelt mournfully beside the broken hutch. "I was going to breed them rabbits. There's no sheep left."

Gilly tells him that she is going to breed the rabbits because the sheep are gone. And we know where the sheep went. After this scene, Jon identifies Gilly as the Rabbit Keeper. 

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Crouched atop the rock that had sheltered him during the night was the rabbit keeper, wrapped in a black cloak so large it drowned her. Sam's cloak, Jon realized at once. Why is she wearing Sam's cloak? "The fat one told me I'd find you here, m'lord," she said.

A pregnant woman being a keeper of rabbits....

But all of this is corrupted in a sense. Pregnant women eating rabbits; dead rabbits hanging from lances, a crossbow worth a thousand rabbits (it is the sentence right after the above that Gilly says this); Arya listening to Chiswyck telling the story of Ser Gregor raping the daughter of the Inn keeper saying that she was 'wiggling like a rabbit'; Arya's rabbits on a spit being turned by boys and then basted with honey by pot girls and then witnessing Biter eating one of those rabbits (I think its interesting that Biter is seen as an aquatic-hybrid-fishy- and is so graphically eating a rabbit glazed with honey, Arya IX, aCoK); Pyp's yelling 'the turtle was stuffed with rabbits' (turtles also being symbols of immortality); Victarion describing Maron Volmark as the King of Rabbits because Euron gave him Greenshield (and after all is has a mantra that Euron's gifts are poison; Dany calling her tokar her 'floppy ears' because of a comment of Brown Ben and she even calls herself queen of rabbits. And then Gilly who is probably a product of incest and was pregnant in those scenes with a child born of incest.   

To me this points to consuming something that is indicative of procreation for obtaining immortality i.e. pointing out the cognitive dissonance of the symbolism of receiving holy communion/Eucharist which is the body and blood of Christ and committing what essentially boils down to  as cannibalism. (That in no way is meant to be offensive to Catholics) 

 

On 10/17/2016 at 4:48 PM, ravenous reader said:

Bran is my main candidate for someone who is first sacrificed to a god, rising in the godhead, to return 'reborn' and finally, I believe, sacrifice himself for the good of the realm.  Bran pinioned by -- or nailed to -- the weirwood tree, as we anticipate him to become in the manner of 'half corpse-half tree' enthralled and enthralling Bloodraven, could not be a more graphic representation of Christian or Odinesque crucifixion.  When Bran was young, Jon gave up his fish for Bran in a selfless 'Christlike' gesture of generosity and love (echoing the parable of the miracle of the bread loaves and the fish) that Bran's never forgotten -- soon it will be Bran's turn to reciprocate, and symbolically he is the fish!  (Besides being a Tully, for more on Bran's increasingly aquatic symbolic existence 'underwater', see my 'nennymoan' musings, as referenced upthread).  Such a sacrifice would also evoke the poisson/poison relation you've uncovered.

There is also another person with similar symbols as well; Bronn. Bronn was also a name of the Fisher King, guardian of the Holy Grail. And currently he is Lord Stokeworth, whose sigil is a lamb holding a golden cup on a green field. But he is of the Blackwater. And black water is the name for wastewater that contains organic waste from toilets. (A shitty version of Bran?) Plus I think it is interesting that he named his wife's son after Tyrion and gave him the surname Tanner. Which tanning hides requires both milk of lime and soaking in dung-water to remove that lime and to bate the hides (make them supple). I especially like the bate part because it can be spelled bait. Which if you think about it, bait for fishing but also Bronn baited Cersei into acting against him and thus led to him becoming Lord Stokeworth. But this might be a stretch. 

Then we have Bran being a Tully, is from the Red Fork of the Trident but he is closely identified with the Green Fork. And remember we spoke about the symbolism of the forks and their headwaters. 

Anyway this got away from me. I am reading the rest slowly but I just wanted to share a few thoughts on some of the things that stood out to me in your comment @ravenous reader

Edited by Pain killer Jane

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So I don't want to bog down people with religious stuff but I was doing some research and I came across Stormsend. 

The tradition name for the Red Sea (that thing that Moses parted) is Yam Suph. The word Suph itself is Reed and therefore is translated as Sea of Reeds (I will leave that there). There is an interpretation that cites that Suph is related to Suphah (Storm) and Soph (end) and its usage to identify the body of water that Moses parted denotes the end of persecution by Egyptians and thus a storm's end. 

Btw the Sea of Reeds could be akin to the Egyptian Sekhet-Aaru or the heavenly reed fields where Osiris rules. And I just wanna point out that House Reed is located in the North, the Underworld.   

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5 hours ago, Pain killer Jane said:

I just wanted to share a few thoughts on some of the things that stood out to me in your comment @ravenous reader

Much food for thought!  Thank you very much also for your fascinating underwater connections on the 'Hollow Hills' thread.

5 hours ago, Pain killer Jane said:
On 10/17/2016 at 7:48 PM, ravenous reader said:

'lamprey' is a pun on 'lamb prey'...

It is also a play on another theme; Lamp ray. Specifically the Crone's Lantern shining in the darkness and the constellation of four stars that enclose a golden haze. That is a Davos quote from aSoS. I especially love that scene because he looks out of the northern window and sees a half moon, the Galley sailing West, the Crone's lantern enclosing a yellow haze and the Ice Dragon's eye pointing North.

That reminds me of the 'Lonely Light' of the 'Farwynds' (itself a pun on 'far winds'...by which the islands are connected to the power of the old gods and greenseeing).  The westernmost Iron islanders are known for being skinchangers of seals and whales, for which they're referred to as 'sea wolves' (to which we can apply my 'sea/see' pun, together with the Stark allusion, yielding yet another greenseeing connection).  Perhaps lamprey, lamb prey and lamp ray are all connected by the idea of sacrifice in exchange -- payment -- for the boon that may come of it, such as the power of skinchanging or greenseeing.

5 hours ago, Pain killer Jane said:
On 10/17/2016 at 7:48 PM, ravenous reader said:

Of course, the lapin (the rabbit), like the pain (the bread) is sacrificed in the interests of regeneration and resurrection.

In Asian mythology, the rabbit in the moon pounds the elixir of immortality for the moon goddess. In other versions, it pounds rice cakes. And rabbits while being symbols of fertility and thus them being equated with immortality fits as procreation is nature's form of immortality.

Good point!  The rabbit 'rice cakes' are the Asian version of the chocolate Easter bunny or indeed Easter eggs which are consumed to celebrate the gift of eternal life!

By the way, there's also the Chinese product 'White Rabbit candy' which was found to contain dangerous levels of melamine and formaldehyde...the taint of eternal life.

Regarding procreation as nature's immortality, perhaps that's why Patchface says that under the sea 'the old fish eat the young fish' -- perhaps referring to the abomination of child sacrifice --and Varys adds 'the big fish eat the little fish and I keep on paddling'...Notably, Varys has sacrificed his procreative ability -- his 'little fish' as sperm and his 'eggs' as testicles --in a black magic ritual conferring some kind of power in exchange.

5 hours ago, Pain killer Jane said:
Quote

Now they call themselves the Wild Hares and gallop about the country with rabbitskins tied to the ends of their lances, singing songs of chivalry."

In both of these, rabbits are equated with procreation. The first one more than the second. Lances are just as swords often equated to the penis. So the Wild Hares tying the dead rabbits to their lances, is a little on the nose for death and life.  And can we stop and say something about their names; the Wild Hares. First off the group thinks of themselves as young wolves thus probably mimicking the Winter Wolves. Secondly they are named Hares not Rabbits. Hare = hair.

To add to that, heirs!

Also, the image of tying the hares/hairs/heirs to the end of their lances in a dual symbol of life and death is reminiscent of Rhaegar presenting the wreath of blue roses (like a death wreath as well as a symbol of Spring) to Lyanna at the end of his Lance, thereby marking Lyanna for death -- as well as a birth.

5 hours ago, Pain killer Jane said:

'the turtle was stuffed with rabbits' (turtles also being symbols of immortality)

Nice one.  What do you make of this:

Quote

A Clash of Kings - Daenerys V

Dany had laughed when he told her. "Was it not you who told me warlocks were no more than old soldiers, vainly boasting of forgotten deeds and lost prowess?"

Xaro looked troubled. "And so it was, then. But now? I am less certain. It is said that the glass candles are burning in the house of Urrathon Night-Walker, that have not burned in a hundred years. Ghost grass grows in the Garden of Gehane, phantom tortoises have been seen carrying messages between the windowless houses on Warlock's Way, and all the rats in the city are chewing off their tails. The wife of Mathos Mallarawan, who once mocked a warlock's drab moth-eaten robe, has gone mad and will wear no clothes at all. Even fresh-washed silks make her feel as though a thousand insects were crawling on her skin. And Blind Sybassion the Eater of Eyes can see again, or so his slaves do swear. A man must wonder." He sighed. "These are strange times in Qarth. And strange times are bad for trade. It grieves me to say so, yet it might be best if you left Qarth entirely, and sooner rather than later." Xaro stroked her fingers reassuringly. "You need not go alone, though. You have seen dark visions in the Palace of Dust, but Xaro has dreamed brighter dreams. I see you happily abed, with our child at your breast. Sail with me around the Jade Sea, and we can yet make it so! It is not too late. Give me a son, my sweet song of joy!"

Give you a dragon, you mean. "I will not wed you, Xaro."

In exchange for Dany's living sacrifices, including that of her unborn son, after which she apparently forsook further fertility (much like Varys), Dany received her 'children' the dragons who seem to have inspired some kind of magical upswing in Essos.  Interestingly, there is a profusion of fertility as well as eating, including cannibalistic, imagery in this passage associated with the explosion of magic, particularly greenseeing abilities ('eater of eyes can see again'). 

Tying into the theme of sacrifice for spiritual power and immortality, I wonder if the 'Garden of Gehane' alludes to the biblical 'Garden of Gethsemane' where Christ famously prayed, and was tempted, the night before the crucifixion (he's also described as the sacrificial Lamb of God...'lamb prey' becomes 'lamp ray' the risen Light of God).  The Garden of Gethsemane is also associated with the 'Last Supper' in which Jesus demonstrated the meaning of Communion for the first time, and with Jesus's betrayal at the hands of his own 'brothers.'  

5 hours ago, Pain killer Jane said:

To me this points to consuming something that is indicative of procreation for obtaining immortality i.e. pointing out the cognitive dissonance of the symbolism of receiving holy communion/Eucharist which is the body and blood of Christ and committing what essentially boils down to  as cannibalism. (That in no way is meant to be offensive to Catholics) 

Agreed.

Incidentally, the word 'Gethsemane' is derived from the Aramaic for 'oil press,' presumably referring to the olive oil that is obtained from the olive trees growing there.  Thus, olive trees (the lamb prey equivalent) are sacrificed to produce olive oil, which can be used as lamp fuel to produce light (lamp ray).  Interestingly, the olive trees growing there, like the weirwoods, are considered sacred and among the oldest in the world:

Quote

 From Wikipedia:

the site of Gethsemane located "at the foot of the Mount of Olives", and he adds that "the faithful were accustomed to go there to pray". Eight ancient olive trees growing in the Latin site of the garden may be 900 years old.[9]

Olive trees[edit]

A study conducted by the National Research Council of Italy in 2012 found that several olive trees in the garden are amongst the oldest known to scieprence.[10] Dates of 1092, 1166 and 1198 AD were obtained by carbon dating from older parts of the trunks of three trees.[10]DNA tests show that the trees were originally planted from the same parent plant.[10] This could indicate attempt to keep the linage of an older species intact.[11][12] Then again the three trees tested could have been sprouts reviving from the older roots. “The results of tests on trees in the Garden of Gethsemane have not settled the question of whether the gnarled trees are the very same which sheltered Jesus because olive trees can grow back from roots after being cut down”, researchers said.[12]

However Bernabei writes, “All the tree trunks are hollow inside so that the central, older wood is missing . . . In the end, only three from a total of eight olive trees could be successfully dated. The dated ancient olive trees do, however, not allow any hypothesis to be made with regard to the age of the remaining five giant olive trees.”[13] Babcox said that the roots of the oldest trees are possibly much older and then points out the traditional claim that the trees are two thousand years old.[14]

 

3 hours ago, Pain killer Jane said:

The tradition name for the Red Sea (that thing that Moses parted) is Yam Suph. The word Suph itself is Reed and therefore is translated as Sea of Reeds (I will leave that there). There is an interpretation that cites that Suph is related to Suphah (Storm) and Soph (end) and its usage to identify the body of water that Moses parted denotes the end of persecution by Egyptians and thus a storm's end. 

Btw the Sea of Reeds could be akin to the Egyptian Sekhet-Aaru or the heavenly reed fields where Osiris rules. And I just wanna point out that House Reed is located in the North, the Underworld.   

Interesting.

'The Neck is the key to the kingdom.' (ACOK-Theon II)

 

Edited by ravenous reader

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19 hours ago, ravenous reader said:

Much food for thought!  Thank you very much also for your fascinating underwater connections on the 'Hollow Hills' thread.

Your welcome. You give me a lot to think about as well. 

19 hours ago, ravenous reader said:

Perhaps lamprey, lamb prey and lamp ray are all connected by the idea of sacrifice in exchange -- payment -- for the boon that may come of it, such as the power of skinchanging or greenseeing.

Snake handling tradition in Pentecostal churches in the Appalachias.  

19 hours ago, ravenous reader said:

Notably, Varys has sacrificed his procreative ability -- his 'little fish' as sperm and his 'eggs' as testicles --in a black magic ritual conferring some kind of power in exchange.

That makes sense as the Unsullied are castrated and their organs are sacrificed to the Lady of Spears. Then to receive a spike helm (penis hat) they take a silver mark and buy a newborn slave child, kill it in front of its mother and then pay the master for the loss. The act of killing a newborn (symbol of life) and then receiving a symbol of power is in line with Caster, Sistermen and other places that sacrifice for power.  

19 hours ago, ravenous reader said:

To add to that, heirs!

Yes I forgot about that. 

19 hours ago, ravenous reader said:

Also, the image of tying the hares/hairs/heirs to the end of their lances in a dual symbol of life and death is reminiscent of Rhaegar presenting the wreath of blue roses (like a death wreath as well as a symbol of Spring) to Lyanna at the end of his Lance, thereby marking Lyanna for death -- as well as a birth.

Absolutely. This also supports the theory that Garlen (a ring of flowers) was the one that put the poison in Joffery's cup. And you know this wreath symbolizing death and spring always leads me back to "Ring Around the Rosie" whose actual name is "Ring a Ring O' Roses" and the persistent legend that the song is about The Plague. 

19 hours ago, ravenous reader said:
Quote

A Clash of Kings - Daenerys V

Dany had laughed when he told her. "Was it not you who told me warlocks were no more than old soldiers, vainly boasting of forgotten deeds and lost prowess?"

Xaro looked troubled. "And so it was, then. But now? I am less certain. It is said that the glass candles are burning in the house of Urrathon Night-Walker, that have not burned in a hundred years. Ghost grass grows in the Garden of Gehane, phantom tortoises have been seen carrying messages between the windowless houses on Warlock's Way, and all the rats in the city are chewing off their tails. The wife of Mathos Mallarawan, who once mocked a warlock's drab moth-eaten robe, has gone mad and will wear no clothes at all. Even fresh-washed silks make her feel as though a thousand insects were crawling on her skin. And Blind Sybassion the Eater of Eyes can see again, or so his slaves do swear. A man must wonder." He sighed. "These are strange times in Qarth. And strange times are bad for trade. It grieves me to say so, yet it might be best if you left Qarth entirely, and sooner rather than later." Xaro stroked her fingers reassuringly. "You need not go alone, though. You have seen dark visions in the Palace of Dust, but Xaro has dreamed brighter dreams. I see you happily abed, with our child at your breast. Sail with me around the Jade Sea, and we can yet make it so! It is not too late. Give me a son, my sweet song of joy!"

Give you a dragon, you mean. "I will not wed you, Xaro."

In exchange for Dany's living sacrifices, including that of her unborn son, after which she apparently forsook further fertility (much like Varys), Dany received her 'children' the dragons who seem to have inspired some kind of magical upswing in Essos.  Interestingly, there is a profusion of fertility as well as eating, including cannibalistic, imagery in this passage associated with the explosion of magic, particularly greenseeing abilities ('eater of eyes can see again'). 

Tying into the theme of sacrifice for spiritual power and immortality, I wonder if the 'Garden of Gehane' alludes to the biblical 'Garden of Gethsemane' where Christ famously prayed, and was tempted, the night before the crucifixion (he's also described as the sacrificial Lamb of God...'lamb prey' becomes 'lamp ray' the risen Light of God).  The Garden of Gethsemane is also associated with the 'Last Supper' in which Jesus demonstrated the meaning of Communion for the first time, and with Jesus's betrayal at the hands of his own 'brothers.'  

There was a thread where the OP grouped together all the legends and stories about the Nightfort. And I posted that paragraph as parallels to the stories and their association with dark magic.

Blind Sybassion the Eater of Eyes seeing again reminds me of Symeon Star-eyes putting sapphires in his eyes and then visiting the Nightfort and watching hell hounds fight. And I agree with the eater of eyes seeing again and it being analogous to greenseeing because we have Bloodraven who is half-blind but has a thousand and one eyes to see with. 

And Dany's dragons being identified here as the source for the proliferation of these dark magics speaks to her naming herself the Mother of Monster. (Echidna; which is interesting that Dany is possibly destined to marry Euron "The First Storm and the Last" - very Alpha/Omega wording there- and Echidna was married to Typhon, whose name has been confused as the origin for typhoon.)

I love that the tortoises are phantoms (shadows) carrying messages. Control of messages especially in an age where communication was limited is having extraordinary power. Which is why I can understand Lady Dustin's hatred for the measters. They have vital control of the information system and a massive amount of power stored in those books at the citadel. Which is why it doesn't surprise me that the maesters are shady. However, to have symbols of immorality being shadows of themselves carrying knowledge is disturbing. And here again power (message as knowledge) being carried by inverted symbols of immortality. 

While not a direct parallel this reminds me of the The Thing in the Night as does Urrathon Night-Walker.

Urrathon Night-Walker and the glass candles are also akin to Blind Sybassion and Symeon Star-eyes because glass candles when burning allow people to see without physically seeing. And the only other person with the name Urrathon is Urrathon IV Goodbrother nicknamed Bad Brother (this leads me to the passage talking about the sacrifice of Gilly's son to the Others and the others being described as his brothers and Urrathon was nicknamed Bad Brother because he put to death all of the sons-heirs- of the previous king. And is quite interesting when you pair it with Psalm 69:8 "I am become a stranger unto my brethren, And an alien unto my mother's children". Perhaps Gilly's son will be considered a bad brother by his brothers? Which also reminds me of Jon's constant fear of being viewed as a bad brother both as a brother of Nights Watch and Rob. That was one of the first things Tyrion challenges Jon about and it was the fear of Catlyn). Edit: The psalm quote specifically identifies the mother's children as brothers but Gilly's son is brother to the Others through their father and as is Jon.

And Urrathon Night-Walker and his burning glass candles vaguely touches on Eldric Shadowchaser and LB because remember Davos (probably named for Davos the Dragonslayer) used the hearth fire in the Hall of the Painted Table to chase away the shadows. Aside from Night-walker being a euphemism for whores, I can speculate that the activity of night-walking would require some form of light. Which when you think that Davos calls the Crone's lantern constellation an old friend and Urrathon Night Walker's glass candles are burning seems to relate to each other. (this is speculation)

The Rats chewing off their own tails is reminiscent of the Rat cook and the cannibalism so prevalent in that story and then it is also reminiscent of House Toland and their ouroboros sigil, not to mention that a scion of that house is having dreams of warring dragons specifically interpreted as Dany and Aegon VI warring against each other. 

The ghost grass is extremely terrifying if we believe the Dothraki, that ghost grass will choke the life out of the world. Which is interesting that ghost grass is appearing in a garden that is a symbol of life. 

I love the identification of Gethsemane as the possible source of the Garden of Gehane but I always took it as Gehenna where the kings of Judah would sacrifice children and it being the equivalent to hell. This is purely on name basis but the sacrificing of children/fertility is often paired with cannibalism. So a garden having the name of a place where the sacrifice children took place is very telling. 

19 hours ago, ravenous reader said:

 Thus, olive trees (the lamb prey equivalent) are sacrificed to produce olive oil, which can be used as lamp fuel to produce light (lamp ray).  

Olive Oil is thought to be the oil that lit the menorah for eight days. And since we have an abundance of Judeo-Christian allusion in the novels this could be relevant. And Hanukkah is a winter holiday. 

19 hours ago, ravenous reader said:

Interestingly, the olive trees growing there, like the weirwoods, are considered sacred and among the oldest in the world:

Athena was given the patronage of Athens because she gave an Olive tree to them and it was decided on by a contest between her and Poseidon (the lord of seas and earthquakes). And remember that greenseeing is closely allied with the weirwoods and the BSE was said to have taken a Tiger woman (the fandom has speculated that this is a child of the forest) as a wife. So we could interpret this as a woman giving a tree to him and thus the GEoTD. Which could lend credence to the theory that the shade of the evening trees are corrupted weirwoods. And goes back to the Tree of knowledge of good and evil symbolism we keep seeing. 

19 hours ago, ravenous reader said:

nteresting.

'The Neck is the key to the kingdom.' (ACOK-Theon II)

I know Balon was talking about the Northern Kingdom but I can't help but see the other meanings to this. Everyone has long speculated that Howland knows about Jon's parentage. Lady Stoneheart is rumored to be there. Meage Mormont is also rumored to be there with Rob's will. And a southern invasion is crippled at the neck (pun intended there) but a Northern invasion as well (specifically the Others march but Rob's war was crippled at the neck because the Twins are close to the Neck and the castle sits at a crucial choke point as well).

 

Edited by Pain killer Jane

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Oh to add on to my rabbit hole of Asshai up thread, it could be a spelling of Assiah, "the World of Action", one of the four spiritual worlds of the Kabalah and it is "the seat of the dark and impure powers". Sounds like Asshai. 

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19 hours ago, ravenous reader said:
22 hours ago, Pain killer Jane said:

The tradition name for the Red Sea (that thing that Moses parted) is Yam Suph. The word Suph itself is Reed and therefore is translated as Sea of Reeds (I will leave that there). There is an interpretation that cites that Suph is related to Suphah (Storm) and Soph (end) and its usage to identify the body of water that Moses parted denotes the end of persecution by Egyptians and thus a storm's end. 

Btw the Sea of Reeds could be akin to the Egyptian Sekhet-Aaru or the heavenly reed fields where Osiris rules. And I just wanna point out that House Reed is located in the North, the Underworld.   

Interesting.

'The Neck is the key to the kingdom.' (ACOK-Theon II)

You know in the light of the the Sea of Reeds being a stormsend, coral reefs function in a similar fashion and coral is tied to the nennymoans/anemones and also lime used in hair was made of burnt coral.  

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1 hour ago, Pain killer Jane said:

Oh to add on to my rabbit hole of Asshai up thread, it could be a spelling of Assiah, "the World of Action", one of the four spiritual worlds of the Kabalah and it is "the seat of the dark and impure powers". Sounds like Asshai. 

I was listening to one of LML's YouTube podcasts earlier today, and his co-host pronouncs Asshai on the first syllable. It sounds almost like Ash Eye.  Ash Eye reminds me of the Gods Eye for some reason.  LML theorizes that a meteor once feel to Planetos causing the Long Night.   Perhaps Asshai once was a holy area like the Gods Eye before being destroyed by the meteor?  (And the current city rebuilt after that?)  

The only people we know from Asshai are Melisandre and Quaithe, red priestesses.  Red priests see visions in the flames, like a greenseer but in a fire not a dream.   So, one could call their "sight" an "ash eye" not a third eye. 

Hope this isn't too off topic.  I know we talked about "eyes" up-thread, in addition to Asshai.  Just wanted to add to that.     

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2 hours ago, Isobel Harper said:

I was listening to one of LML's YouTube podcasts earlier today, and his co-host pronouncs Asshai on the first syllable. It sounds almost like Ash Eye.  Ash Eye reminds me of the Gods Eye for some reason.  LML theorizes that a meteor once feel to Planetos causing the Long Night.   Perhaps Asshai once was a holy area like the Gods Eye before being destroyed by the meteor?  (And the current city rebuilt after that?)  

The only people we know from Asshai are Melisandre and Quaithe, red priestesses.  Red priests see visions in the flames, like a greenseer but in a fire not a dream.   So, one could call their "sight" an "ash eye" not a third eye. 

Hope this isn't too off topic.  I know we talked about "eyes" up-thread, in addition to Asshai.  Just wanted to add to that.     

There is the existence of the Ash River in Asshai that has blind fish which only shadowbinders eat as I speculate could be a ritual in order to increase their power. And nice speculation that a red priests sight is an ash eye. Mel keeps saying that Rh'llor will be the one that will deliver them from the evil Great Other but damn are they not monstrous in everything about them. 

An ash eye makes me think of Timmett son of Timmett, who plucked out his eye and throw it into the fire. 

And ash itself is the burned remnants of something and shadows can be remnants of living people and shadow binding is achieved through the sexual ritual combination of blood and fire magic and the shadow baby Mel birthed was a shadow of a living person. 

@LmL does speculate that while the sunset kingdoms contain the heart of winter, Asshai by the shadow could have contained the Heart of Summer and then transformed by the meteor and the BSE using dark magic. He explains it way better than I ever could. I think it is in the Asshai video he did with History of Westeros or in the Great Empire of the Dawn vid.  I think in one of the same two videos someone in the fandom pointed out that the current city of Asshai couldn't have been built after a long night scenario happening because of their complete dependence on foreign trade for basic living. 

Edited by Pain killer Jane

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4 hours ago, Pain killer Jane said:

to have symbols of immorality being shadows of themselves carrying knowledge is disturbing.

I just realized I made another one of those gaffs. Immortality vs. immorality but it makes sense because achieving immortality is being proven to originate from a great amount of immorality........

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dog / god

sun / son / solar

Several metaphors in Jon POVs in ADwD compare fire and/or the religion of R'hllor to a dog. This led me to wonder whether there might be deliberate wordplay around dogs and gods.

The sword glowed red and yellow and orange, alive with light. Jon had seen the show before … but not like this, never before like this. Lightbringer was the sun made steel. When Stannis raised the blade above his head, men had to turn their heads or cover their eyes. Horses shied, and one threw his rider. The blaze in the fire pit seemed to shrink before this storm of light, like a small dog cowering before a larger one. The Wall itself turned red and pink and orange, as waves of color danced across the ice. Is this the power of king's blood?

(ADwD, Jon III)

"I had forgotten that you northmen worship trees."
"What sort of god lets himself be pissed upon by dogs?" asked Farring's crony Clayton Suggs.

(ADwD, Jon IV)

"Now, a dog can herd a flock of sheep," the King-Beyond-the-Wall had said, "but free folk, well, some are shadowcats and some are stones. One kind prowls where they please and will tear your dogs to pieces. The other will not move at all unless you kick them." Neither shadowcats nor stones were like to give up the gods they had worshiped all their lives to bow down before one they hardly knew.

(ADwD, Jon V)

Melisandre raised her hands, and the ditchfire leapt upward toward her fingers, like a great red dog springing for a treat.

(ADwD, Jon X)

Of course, there are zillions of references to dogs in the books, and many of them seem unrelated to fire or the red god. So there may be some unique aspect about demonstrations of piety by Stannis and Melisandre at the Wall. For some reason, the author sees their religion as being like a dog. If it's not a pun on god, what do you think GRRM is getting at here?

To be fair, in ADwD, Jon also uses the dog metaphor to describe the Wall, banks and the Karstarks who come looking for Alys. But there's a definite pattern with the comparison of fire and/or R'hllorism to a dog.

I am throwing in a link here to some analysis of solars on another thread. @ravenous reader had pointed out that there was a pun on sun and son just as I was starting to pay attention to solars. I thought I would find some kind of wordplay clue about Ser Loras relating to solars, but that didn't pan out at all. What I did find is a pattern of sons taking over their father's solars, and daughters as well as sons spending time in their father's solars. So the way that solars is used would very much support the idea of a pun on son and sun. (I realize there is a rich and complex set of metaphors around the sun and moon and stars, but those have been discussed on other threads already. I just though the pun angle needed to be noted in this thread.)

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