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A Stark must always be in Winterfell to guard the Crypts

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While looking at information regarding the crypts of Winterfell I realized something was very odd about the way they are described. Putting all the other aspects about their hidden location in Winterfell and the fact that they are a place for the Starks a side for moment, we are told that the oldest parts of the Crypts are the passage ways towards the bottom and the newest levels, in which Brandon and lyanna are buried, are at the top. From an mining point of view this makes no sense. Normally when digging the first and oldest passage ways built will be the ones closest to the surface and when expending the mine you would dig downwards making the newest passage ways the deepest area.  

This would indicate that the Crypts were not built from the surface at all, rather the entrance to the Crypts is actually an exit. This means that the Starks/ or any human in the matter did not build the Crypts. It is my belief that the Crypts of Winterfell where built by the Children of the Forrest and they allowed the first men to hide their during the long night. The hot springs that heat Winterfell would allow the the first men to survive the harsh weather. Their is most likely also a weirwood tree down there/ or the roots of the Weirwood try stretch down there. I believe this is where the last hero actually made contact with the Children of the Forrest and learnt how to push back the Others. 

This is why Winterfell was built, to protect the pact between the Men and the Children, but also to remember of the Others where defeated. Brandon the Builder, AA and the Last hero are all most likely Starks, maybe even the same Stark. The Starks duty is to protect the tree and in turn the memories of the past. The entrance to the Crypts is hidden to all but a select few in order to protect it, Brandon the Builder built a fortress to protect it and eventually it became a town in of itself. This is also why the Starks are said to trap their souls in the Crypts. We are told that the soul of each Stark is trapped within the sword of their statue. This is because even in death it is the duty of each Stark to protect its place. I believe the first statue in the deepest level is Brandon the Builders. 

This leads me to Jon. In Jones dreams he finds himself in Winterfell alone among bones. There is nothing alive there, I believe this is commonly accepted as foreshadowing to the coming of the Others. Everyone is dead but eventually he makes his way down to the Crypts where he finds is brother and all the other Starks. He is told he doenst belong down their. This is because he is not a Stark. I always assumed these dreams where hinting at Jons parentage alone but now I think they also give us key information about the true nature of the Crypts. While there is nothing left alive outside the Crypts in Winterfell the Starks still protect it, all of them. It is the price they have to pay for pushing back the Others, they must protect the Children of the Forrest and the Weirwood tree. 

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1 hour ago, np1234 said:

We are told that the soul of each Stark is trapped within the sword of their statue.

Could you provide a citation, please? I don't recall having seen this. If this were the case, whose "souls" have Osha, Meera, Hodor, and Jojen carried off?

1 hour ago, np1234 said:

He is told he doenst belong down their. This is because he is not a Stark

So the whole idea that Jon was Lyanna's son is total bunk? That, maybe, Jon really is the offspring of commoner Wylla and Lord Eddard? Really nice of Ned to provide the support and protection that he did. Funny that Ned always thought of Jon when he remembered his sister.

1 hour ago, np1234 said:

Brandon the Builder, AA and the Last hero are all most likely Starks, maybe even the same Stark.

On the other hand, we know Brandon the Builder was a Stark; it is written. And "Azor Ahai" was some dude from Ashai'i who killed his wife and then fled north. Or was it south? Ashai'i looks like it could be at, or south of, the equator.

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We know from The World Of Ice and Fire that the Crypts are the oldest part, and that the first keep was built over them.  We also know that they are larger than Winterfell itself.  The crypts were what Winterfell are built on, which is why they never flattened /leveled the land.  The fact that they are deeper and more unknown than we know is a mystery thus far, but we do know that if Bran the Builder built Winterfell on top of the crypts, and only started from a small keep, then it was built for a much more formidable reason than just a home.  It was built to withhold some force....there must always be a Stark in Winterfell.

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4 hours ago, np1234 said:

While looking at information regarding the crypts of Winterfell I realized something was very odd about the way they are described. Putting all the other aspects about their hidden location in Winterfell and the fact that they are a place for the Starks a side for moment, we are told that the oldest parts of the Crypts are the passage ways towards the bottom and the newest levels, in which Brandon and lyanna are buried, are at the top. From an mining point of view this makes no sense. Normally when digging the first and oldest passage ways built will be the ones closest to the surface and when expending the mine you would dig downwards making the newest passage ways the deepest area.  

This would indicate that the Crypts were not built from the surface at all, rather the entrance to the Crypts is actually an exit. This means that the Starks/ or any human in the matter did not build the Crypts. It is my belief that the Crypts of Winterfell where built by the Children of the Forrest and they allowed the first men to hide their during the long night. The hot springs that heat Winterfell would allow the the first men to survive the harsh weather. Their is most likely also a weirwood tree down there/ or the roots of the Weirwood try stretch down there. I believe this is where the last hero actually made contact with the Children of the Forrest and learnt how to push back the Others. 

This is why Winterfell was built, to protect the pact between the Men and the Children, but also to remember of the Others where defeated. Brandon the Builder, AA and the Last hero are all most likely Starks, maybe even the same Stark. The Starks duty is to protect the tree and in turn the memories of the past. The entrance to the Crypts is hidden to all but a select few in order to protect it, Brandon the Builder built a fortress to protect it and eventually it became a town in of itself. This is also why the Starks are said to trap their souls in the Crypts. We are told that the soul of each Stark is trapped within the sword of their statue. This is because even in death it is the duty of each Stark to protect its place. I believe the first statue in the deepest level is Brandon the Builders. 

This leads me to Jon. In Jones dreams he finds himself in Winterfell alone among bones. There is nothing alive there, I believe this is commonly accepted as foreshadowing to the coming of the Others. Everyone is dead but eventually he makes his way down to the Crypts where he finds is brother and all the other Starks. He is told he doenst belong down their. This is because he is not a Stark. I always assumed these dreams where hinting at Jons parentage alone but now I think they also give us key information about the true nature of the Crypts. While there is nothing left alive outside the Crypts in Winterfell the Starks still protect it, all of them. It is the price they have to pay for pushing back the Others, they must protect the Children of the Forrest and the Weirwood tree. 

Wow, that's a whole lot of stuff that isn't in the books 

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The opening post got me to thinking about some stuff. For some reason I started thinking about the way Martin describes his caves and caverns.

I’m thinking I got a glimpse of what may be going on under WF in the Arianne chapter on Martin’s blog. I’m not sure if this is considered spoiler material so in the reveal tag it goes.

Spoiler

 

 The passageway Arianne had chosen for herself turned steep and wet within a hundred feet. The footing grew uncertain. Once she slipped, and had to catch herself to keep from sliding. More than once she considered turning back, but she could see Ser Daemon’s torch ahead and hear him calling for Elia, so she pressed on. And all at once she found herself in another cavern, five times as big as the last one, surrounded by a forest of stone columns. Daemon Sand moved to her side and raised his torch. “Look how the stone’s been shaped,” he said. “Those columns, and the wall there. See them?”

“Faces,” said Arianne. So many sad eyes, staring.

“This place belonged to the children of the forest.”

“A thousand years ago.” Arianne turned her head. “Listen. Is that Joss?”

It was. The other searchers had found Elia, as she and Daemon learned after they made their way back up the slippery slope to the last hall. Their passageway led down to a still black pool, where they discovered the girl up to her waist in water, catching blind white fish with her bare hands, her torch burning red and smoky in the sand where she had planted it.

 

 

The cave Bran and company are going to is described by Coldhands ---

A Dance with Dragons - Bran II       "The cave is warded. They cannot pass." The ranger used his sword to point. "You can see the entrance there. Halfway up, between the weirwoods, that cleft in the rock."

"I see it," said Bran. Ravens were flying in and out. <snip>  "A fold in the rock, that's all I see," said Meera.    "There's a passage there. Steep and twisty at first, a runnel through the rock. If you can reach it, you'll be safe."

Once inside one of Martin’s many caves there are passageways, caverns and water. Martin is a wordy writer who probably has to purchase a new thesaurus on a regular basis ---- sepulcher, vault, tomb, crypt --- cleft, runnel, cave, cavern.

Adjusting my antenna and comparing the above quote ---- the CotF once lived in the caverns under WF. It’s a stretch, but if men carved out a cleft expanding it to make a doorway and carved stairs on a sloping passage the crypt (underground burial place) would have easy access.  

A Dance with Dragons - The Turncloak     The way was narrow and steep, the steps worn in the center by centuries of feet. They went single file—the serjeant with the lantern, then Theon and Lady Dustin, her other man behind them. He had always thought of the crypts as cold, and so they seemed in summer, but now as they descended the air grew warmer. Not warm, never warm, but warmer than above. Down there below the earth, it would seem, the chill was constant, unchanging.   <snip>  "There are lower levels. Older. The lowest level is partly collapsed, I hear. I have never been down there." He pushed the door open and led them out into a long vaulted tunnel, where mighty granite pillars marched two by two into blackness.

The old kings of winter are at the beginning of this level because a stone mason would need to cut/chisel the rock on that level for the support columns, statues and vaults. Basically the stonecutter is enlarging the crypt as he goes.

TL;DR    How many levels are down there I do not know. I’m thinking the CotF once inhabited the cavern below WF and there is a back door somewhere.

I do have a question though. Starks are descendents of the First Men and the First Men & the CotF had a treaty?

 

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I also think that there is something mysterious about the crypts and I've always wondered about the way they were filled, starting from the lower levels. The idea that originally the crypts were in fact a cavern / a series of caverns (born naturally, or created by the Children) does make sense to me.

That Arianne quote is very interesting. 

I don't have much to add to the discussion at this point, mainly just here to follow this thread.

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7 hours ago, zandru said:

Could you provide a citation, please? I don't recall having seen this. If this were the case, whose "souls" have Osha, Meera, Hodor, and Jojen carried off?

So the whole idea that Jon was Lyanna's son is total bunk? That, maybe, Jon really is the offspring of commoner Wylla and Lord Eddard? Really nice of Ned to provide the support and protection that he did. Funny that Ned always thought of Jon when he remembered his sister.

"That king is missing his sword," Lady Dustin observed.
It was true. Theon did not recall which king it was, but the longsword he should have held was gone. Streaks of rust remained to show where it had been. The sight disquieted him. He had always heard that the iron in the sword kept the spirits of the dead locked within their tombs. If a sword was missing …
There are ghosts in Winterfell. And I am one of them.

(ADwD, The Turncloak - Theon POV)

The stableboy had forgotten about his sword, but now he remembered. "Hodor!" he burped. He went for his blade. They had three tomb swords taken from the crypts of Winterfell where Bran and his brother Rickon had hidden from Theon Greyjoy's ironmen. Bran claimed his uncle Brandon's sword, Meera the one she found upon the knees of his grandfather Lord Rickard. Hodor's blade was much older, a huge heavy piece of iron, dull from centuries of neglect and well spotted with rust. He could swing it for hours at a time.  (ASoS, Bran I)

I think the OP is saying that Jon's paternity is not Stark in origin, which is why the Stark kings in the dream tell him that the crypt is not his place.

There was an interesting discussion with a number of the points made in the OP a few months ago. It may have been this one or this one.

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On 7/28/2017 at 2:17 PM, Clegane'sPup said:

The opening post got me to thinking about some stuff. For some reason I started thinking about the way Martin describes his caves and caverns. . . .

Adjusting my antenna and comparing the above quote ---- the CotF once lived in the caverns under WF. It’s a stretch, but if men carved out a cleft expanding it to make a doorway and carved stairs on a sloping passage the crypt (underground burial place) would have easy access.

I noticed several significant visits to caves during a recent re-read of ACoK. I think GRRM may include ruins among his various types of caves, so Jon's visit to the ring fort at the Fist of the First Men, and his later trip with Qhorin Halfhand through the mountain passage (a real cave, not a ruin) before being taken prisoner by the wildlings; Arya's escape from Harrenhal and Bran's departure from the burned Winterfell - when he literally emerges from the crypt - may fall within the larger cave pattern. There's a narrow cleft between stones at the Fist, and difficult gates at Harrenhal and Winterfell.

Also in ACoK, Tyrion visits the underground storage room where the alchemists keep their stockpile of wild fire. This is very much part of the underground cave pattern, I think.

But reading your post, the Arianne excerpt from TWoW (that you wisely hid as a spoiler) really struck me in a fresh way. I have been wondering about a connection between Jon Snow and the Sand Snakes - the northern bastard and the Dornish bastards - and the passage you cited seems like a possible match for elements of ACoK, Jon IV (when Jon finds the dragon glass cache). I guess I'll have to go to the TWoW area of the forum to say more, but thanks for singling that out. I think I'll re-read that Arianne chapter.

I think these underground places are all part of a sort of "Celtic Underworld," where there are different entrances - possibly even different Underworlds - and only certain, chosen "heroes" from the mainstream world are allowed to enter. The heroes are charged with a specific task that the Fair Folk - in ASOIAF, the Children of the Forest - cannot accomplish on their own, for whatever reason. The pattern is starting to become clearer as we start to link the details of what the heroes find underground and what they do after they emerge from their caves.

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On 28/07/2017 at 2:11 PM, np1234 said:

we are told that the oldest parts of the Crypts are the passage ways towards the bottom and the newest levels, in which Brandon and lyanna are buried, are at the top. From an mining point of view this makes no sense. Normally when digging the first and oldest passage ways built will be the ones closest to the surface and when expending the mine you would dig downwards making the newest passage ways the deepest area.  

Are we? We know the oldest Starks are further down, but are those parts of the crypts older themselves? I don't remember reading that anywhere.

There's definitely something important about them, though.

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On 7/30/2017 at 7:19 PM, Seams said:

and the passage you cited seems like a possible match for elements of ACoK, Jon IV (when Jon finds the dragon glass cache). I guess I'll have to go to the TWoW area of the forum to say more, but thanks for singling that out. I think I'll re-read that Arianne chapter.

You're welcome. Where in the WoW forum are you going to say more?

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8 hours ago, Clegane'sPup said:

You're welcome. Where in the WoW forum are you going to say more?

I just jotted down a few thoughts here. Note: it is in the Winds of Winter forum and includes spoilers from a released chapter of that book. (I think the post has to be approved by a moderator before the link will work.)

Edited by Seams

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21 hours ago, Lady Winter Rose said:

A Stark must always be in Winterfell to guard the Crypts - I believe it to be true. But they guard old fortress, not caves or passages. I mean, duh?

Okay, but what is the Stark in WF guarding in the burial chamber? And, what is the old fortress? The Liddie sorta told me why there must be a Stark in WF.

A Storm of Swords - Bran II      The Liddle took out a knife and whittled at a stick. "When there was a Stark in Winterfell, a maiden girl could walk the kingsroad in her name-day gown and still go unmolested, and travelers could find fire, bread, and salt at many an inn and holdfast. But the nights are colder now, and doors are closed.

I took some time to find the Jon dreams. Amazingly they are in the first book, GoT. I assumed they were later in the book series.

A Game of Thrones - Jon IV     "Do you ever find anyone in your dream?" Sam asked.    Jon shook his head. "No one. The castle is always empty." He had never told anyone of the dream, and he did not understand why he was telling Sam now, yet somehow it felt good to talk of it. "Even the ravens are gone from the rookery, and the stables are full of bones. That always scares me. I start to run then, throwing open doors, climbing the tower three steps at a time, screaming for someone, for anyone. And then I find myself in front of the door to the crypts. It's black inside, and I can see the steps spiraling down. Somehow I know I have to go down there, but I don't want to. I'm afraid of what might be waiting for me. The old Kings of Winter are down there, sitting on their thrones with stone wolves at their feet and iron swords across their laps, but it's not them I'm afraid of. I scream that I'm not a Stark, that this isn't my place, but it's no good, I have to go anyway, so I start down, feeling the walls as I descend, with no torch to light the way. It gets darker and darker, until I want to scream."

A Game of Thrones - Jon VII    Last night he had dreamt the Winterfell dream again. He was wandering the empty castle, searching for his father, descending into the crypts. Only this time the dream had gone further than before. In the dark he'd heard the scrape of stone on stone. When he turned he saw that the vaults were opening, one after the other. As the dead kings came stumbling from their cold black graves, Jon had woken in pitch-dark, his heart hammering. Even when Ghost leapt up on the bed to nuzzle at his face, he could not shake his deep sense of terror. He dared not go back to sleep.

That is why I am curious about the crypt (underground burial chamber) which may be part of a larger cavern.

All of that actually changes nuttin’ in the long term story of ASOIAF. Duh.

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