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The Grey Wolf

Inconsistencies, plot holes, and missing details in TSOTD, TRP, and TPATQ

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24 minutes ago, AlaskanSandman said:

 

 
Is this an error or anything by chance? Seems odd thing to be left untold and implications possibly i wont blab on about here. Though i did want to try and check that this wasn't just a typo 
 

No error. Just a fanciful story that Viserys told to the children, however, per GRRM, rather than an account of events that actually happened.

Edited by Ran

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41 minutes ago, Ran said:

No error. Just a fanciful story that Viserys told to the children, however, per GRRM, rather than an account of events that actually happened.

Interesting. So Per GRRM its just a fanciful story by Viserys I about Jaehaerys I and Alysanne fighting at the wall with dragons?

Nothing to do with Bael, or Queen's Crown, or Gael the Winter Child? Hmmm

Edit- I have more thoughts but im not sure what you know and don't know and are allowed to discuss, though i am interested in your thoughts if able to. Ive always enjoyed your videos when you did them about the books

Edited by AlaskanSandman

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1 hour ago, Lord Varys said:

I know the quote, but this quote doesn't say that Tyrion himself read the account of the squire. Nor does it appear to be that way. After all, the squire would have known why and under what circumstances Ser Byron had tried to slay Syrax, enabling Tyrion to give the real explanation as to why and under what circumstances Ser Byron tried to slay Syrax rather than arguing that Ser Byron trying to slay Vhagar doesn't make any sense.

I mean, if you do know why X did Y you don't argue against X doing Z. You give the reason why X did Y.

And again - Tyrion's entire argument that Storm's End being for Aegon II making it impossible/unlikely that Byron Swann tried to slay Vhagar should have been much more obvious to Munkun than to Tyrion. The man lived during the Dance of the Dragons, Tyrion did not.

It is very unlikely that he would make such a mistake without good cause. That is, assuming the Swanns actually stood with Borros Baratheon against Rhaenyra. Which we don't know at this point.

I guess we are going to have to agree to disagree on this i do think it is more likely Munkun is in error here.

Also how does Tyrion know about this letter have you thought about that? The most likely scenario here is that the contents of the letter are preserved in some manner. And i disagree with it not appearing he read it, actually from the quote it appears that he did read it.

As to Munkun being more in the loop then Tyrion because he was alive during the dance, this is not really much of an argument. Unless Munkun was actually there when it happened, then his sources where second hand and no more reliable then those Tyrion has available to him.

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1 hour ago, AlaskanSandman said:

Interesting. So Per GRRM its just a fanciful story by Viserys I about Jaehaerys I and Alysanne fighting at the wall with dragons?

Yep. Asked him directly on this and he said they were just made-up stories for the kids.

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26 minutes ago, Ran said:

Yep. Asked him directly on this and he said they were just made-up stories for the kids.

Hahaha nooooooooo lol jk fer sure, good to know :) 

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20 hours ago, direpupy said:

Also how does Tyrion know about this letter have you thought about that? 

I mentioned that above somewhere. Tyrion would have read an account of what the letter contained in another history - or perhaps even in some of the treatises on dragonlore he likes to read -, he wouldn't have read the actual letter in full. A historian transcribing things can make mistakes, after all. Tyrion gives no impression that he had access to the private archives of the Swanns (or the family of the squire, if he was writing to his daughter rather than Ser Byron's).

20 hours ago, direpupy said:

The most likely scenario here is that the contents of the letter are preserved in some manner.

Yes, accounts of the letter would be around. The question is whether those accounts are accurate.

20 hours ago, direpupy said:

As to Munkun being more in the loop then Tyrion because he was alive during the dance, this is not really much of an argument. Unless Munkun was actually there when it happened, then his sources where second hand and no more reliable then those Tyrion has available to him.

Certainly not. Tyrion's sources on the Dance are worse than Munkun's by default, just as my sources on the Second World War are by default worse than my grandparents' who lived during the era.

The amount of sources you have when you are contemporary of an era are vastly larger than anything you get when you live decades or centuries later. Especially - but not only - in a medieval setting.

This doesn't by default mean that Munkun is an expert or always right on everything he claims to know, but Tyrion's 'Storm's End stood with Aegon II' argument is completely invalid in this context because Grand Maester Munkun would have been even more aware of that fact than Tyrion Lannister. He lived during that era, and he would have known Borros Baratheon and the Stormlords fighting for Aegon II. He may even have been Grand Maester already when Aegon II died (Gerardys was fed to the dragon, and Orwyle imprisoned). He certainly was Grand Maester throughout the entirety of Aegon III's regency.

I mean, how stupid do you have to be to confuse Syrax with Vhagar, anyway? As far as we know they were never at the same place during the entire war, nor were they ever on the same side. 

The only way to make sense of this is to give Ser Byron Swann a colorful biography, explaining why he may have had a motive to slay both Vhagar and Syrax as well as giving him the opportunity to do both. Then a man like Munkun might get confused. Especially if this happened at a point in time when Syrax and Vhagar were actually physically close.

But if it was as easy as 'the Swanns fought with Storm's End on Aegon's side' then it simply makes no sense that anyone would believe a guy fighting for Aegon II would want to slay Aemond's dragon.

But then, considering that Ran has said that there will be paragraphs dealing with this issue I'm actually inclined to believe that Gyldayn might discuss both Munkun's and Tyrion's theory on the matter, either siding with one of them - or, more likely and even funnier, present his own theory which might then very well be 'the truth' (or not).

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3 hours ago, Lord Varys said:

 

Certainly not. Tyrion's sources on the Dance are worse than Munkun's by default, just as my sources on the Second World War are by default worse than my grandparents' who lived during the era.

 

As someone who studied history at university i can tell you with absolute confindence that this is not true. People who live during a historical event more often then not do not realize they are living to see history made, thus by the time people realize it was a historicaly significant event sources have become unreliable distant memories or secondhand sources.

Tyrions sources are not going to be any worse then those of Munkun.

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7 minutes ago, direpupy said:

As someone who studied history at university i can tell you with absolute confindence that this is not true. People who live during a historical event more often then not do not realize they are living to see history made, thus by the time people realize it was a historicaly significant event sources have become unreliable distant memories or secondhand sources.

Tyrions sources are not going to be any worse then those of Munkun.

That is not true if you are in the thick of things. Living through Stalingrad means you know more about it than any historian ever could. Attending the Yalta conference as a member of, say, Churchill's staff, overhearing things behind closed doors, means you do know more about that historians reading files which are incomplete.

And so on.

But aside from that, Munkun is both a contemporary of the Dance and a historian. He knew how to treat his sources, and he knew that the Stormlords stood with Aegon II. If it was as easy as Tyrion - who is neither a maester nor a trained historian - made it sound, Munkun would have never made that kind of mistake.

Unless, of course, George gives us a good explanation as to why Munkun's account on the Dance is a very bad book. Could be that Munkun had some scribes write it in his name while he was ruling the Realm during the regency.

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9 hours ago, Lord Varys said:

Unless, of course, George gives us a good explanation as to why Munkun's account on the Dance is a very bad book. Could be that Munkun had some scribes write it in his name while he was ruling the Realm during the regency.

That would be interesting.

Come to think of it, why was the succession if Aegon III died prematurely discussed by the regents when that exact same scenario had already occurred once before (Jaehaerys I being the last male Targaryen at the time of his ascension)?

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7 hours ago, The Grey Wolf said:

That would be interesting.

Ah, just an idea. If I had to guess then Munkun's book was likely written after the Regency, when Aegon III had fired them all and brought new men in. Munkun would have had much spare time then.

7 hours ago, The Grey Wolf said:

Come to think of it, why was the succession if Aegon III died prematurely discussed by the regents when that exact same scenario had already occurred once before (Jaehaerys I being the last male Targaryen at the time of his ascension)?

I guess because it was not clear who should succeed him, not to mention that the various regents may have favored different claimants.

There would have been Queen Jaehaera (a very bad choice if she was really as mentally challenged as she appears to be), followed by Aegon III's half-sisters. Baela and Alyn Velaryon would have been the obvious choices, but we can be pretty sure that Unwin Peake wouldn't have liked that at all. Jeyne Arryn and the Corbrays may have favored Rhaena, while she was married to a Corbray, and the Hightowers and their allies would have favored her, too, once she had married Garmund.

Whether there were any other branches we don't really know.

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11 hours ago, Lord Varys said:

Whether there were any other branches we don't really know.

If there were they'd all have to be illegitimate or of the female line.

Anyway, what I want the most from F & B V1 is for the plot holes in TSOTD, TPATQ, etc. to be fixed.

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On 1-3-2018 at 2:24 PM, Lord Varys said:

That is not true if you are in the thick of things. Living through Stalingrad means you know more about it than any historian ever could. Attending the Yalta conference as a member of, say, Churchill's staff, overhearing things behind closed doors, means you do know more about that historians reading files which are incomplete.

And so on.

But aside from that, Munkun is both a contemporary of the Dance and a historian. He knew how to treat his sources, and he knew that the Stormlords stood with Aegon II. If it was as easy as Tyrion - who is neither a maester nor a trained historian - made it sound, Munkun would have never made that kind of mistake.

Unless, of course, George gives us a good explanation as to why Munkun's account on the Dance is a very bad book. Could be that Munkun had some scribes write it in his name while he was ruling the Realm during the regency.

For one, just because he wrote a historical treaty of the dance does not mean he was a historicus, he probably had his history link but that in and of itself does not make him an historian.

Secondly he did not live true it, he lived in the same time there is no reason to asume he saw any of the things he was writing about, and with Tyrion pointing out that the squire actually saw they event as an eyewitnes we can resonably assume Munkun was not an eyewitnes. So to use your example of Stalingrad, he is historian who is writing about stalingrad without having been there himself during the fighting, thus working from secondhand sources that are no beter ore worse then Tyrion's.

As to your Churchill's staff example, since we do not know when Munkun became Grand Maester and he may well have been named only in 131 AC after they end of the dance he may not have been present at all in Kings Landing during the war.

Im sorry but based on the facts we have from the books right now , it is still far more likely Munkun is in error. This may change in future books but for now im sticking with Munkun being wrong. 

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4 hours ago, direpupy said:

For one, just because he wrote a historical treaty of the dance does not mean he was a historicus, he probably had his history link but that in and of itself does not make him an historian.

Now you are trying to split hairs. Scholars at the Citadel are the only historians this world has. It is the only university-like institution in Westeros. By our standards men like Thucydides and medieval historians also don't meet our modern standards of proper historians, yet we still refer to them as such within the confines and limits of their (defective) culture and historical period.

In that sense it makes no sense to claim Munkun - who wrote a historical treatise - doesn't qualify as a historian.

Quote

Secondly he did not live true it, he lived in the same time there is no reason to asume he saw any of the things he was writing about, and with Tyrion pointing out that the squire actually saw they event as an eyewitnes we can resonably assume Munkun was not an eyewitnes. 

I never said Munkun was an eyewitness. I gave examples to illustrate how living through in an age allows you to potentially amass and acquire knowledge only such people can.

Munkun was a member of the ruling class of his time. He was a maester, which means he was learned. He may have even been an archmaester. He was well-connected/learned enough to rise to the august position of Grand Maester. And he lived to become the de facto ruler of the Seven Kingdoms as the sole surviving regent and Hand of the King of Aegon III in 135-36 AC. This man was never far from power. And being close to power brings you also close to knowledge and information.

But even if Munkun had lived and died as an insignificant maester like Yandel he would still have not made such a glaring mistake as confusing Vhagar with Syrax. It is in the same category as claiming King Renly and not King Robb was killed in the Red Wedding.

As far as we know, Vhagar and Syrax were never even at the same place during the war. How on earth could a man like Munkun make such a mistake under those circumstances? And he clearly knew about the context, citing the manner in which Ser Byron tried to slay the she-dragon. That means Byron must also have known where and when this event took place. How could he make such a glaring mistake?

The explanation that could make sense is a very good explanation as to why such a mistake is possible. But that would only work if it turned out that it was, for some reason, rather easy to confuse Vhagar with Syrax (or vice versa) at a certain point during the Dance. Perhaps because Rhaenyra actually flew into the Stormlands while Aemond was still there, or because Swann had motivation and opportunity to kill both Syrax and Vhagar at a certain point in time.

Without details like that the whole thing simply doesn't make any sense.

Edited by Lord Varys

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14 hours ago, Lord Varys said:

Now you are trying to split hairs. Scholars at the Citadel are the only historians this world has. It is the only university-like institution in Westeros. By our standards men like Thucydides and medieval historians also don't meet our modern standards of proper historians, yet we still refer to them as such within the confines and limits of their (defective) culture and historical period.

Not really even in antiquity and Medieval times there was a clear differens between those dedicated to history and people who where more gossipers then historians. You learn the tell which is which when you study history like i did. The fact that Munkun made Grand Maester means that he was not a dedicated historian but a man with broad knowledge who could advise the king on many different matters, so to assume he is a historian based on one treatise is just plain wishful thinking, since it is far more likely he was not.

 

14 hours ago, Lord Varys said:

I never said Munkun was an eyewitness. I gave examples to illustrate how living through in an age allows you to potentially amass and acquire knowledge only such people can.

This would require him talking to eyewitnesses like the squire we where talking about, something he does not seem to have done since his account and that of they only known eyewitness are different. Not to mention that he would not have had time for this during the regency and by the time things slowed down enough for him with Aegon III taking the reigns of the realm for himself not all the witnesses would be avalible any more.

14 hours ago, Lord Varys said:

Munkun was a member of the ruling class of his time. He was a maester, which means he was learned. He may have even been an archmaester. He was well-connected/learned enough to rise to the august position of Grand Maester. And he lived to become the de facto ruler of the Seven Kingdoms as the sole surviving regent and Hand of the King of Aegon III in 135-36 AC. This man was never far from power. And being close to power brings you also close to knowledge and information.

For the very reasons you give above he would not have been able to write his treatise right after the Dance and like i said him being near to power means he was a general scientist not specialized in any one subject since he would have to be able to advice the king in every matter that came before the throne.

Also being close to power does not mean that you have access to knowledge and information that is correct.

14 hours ago, Lord Varys said:

But even if Munkun had lived and died as an insignificant maester like Yandel he would still have not made such a glaring mistake as confusing Vhagar with Syrax. It is in the same category as claiming King Renly and not King Robb was killed in the Red Wedding.

Why would he not make a mistake like that? You are assuming this man is a competent historian working with solely correct information, based on nothing more then the man having been Grand Maester. I'm sorry but that just does not fly, he may have been a excellent adviser in many matters seeing as he made it to Grand Maester, but that does not automatically make him a good historian.

14 hours ago, Lord Varys said:

 

As far as we know, Vhagar and Syrax were never even at the same place during the war. How on earth could a man like Munkun make such a mistake under those circumstances? And he clearly knew about the context, citing the manner in which Ser Byron tried to slay the she-dragon. That means Byron must also have known where and when this event took place. How could he make such a glaring mistake?

 

Quite easily actually, you would be surprised how often that kind of mistakes happen in historical treaty's even today.

14 hours ago, Lord Varys said:

The explanation that could make sense is a very good explanation as to why such a mistake is possible. But that would only work if it turned out that it was, for some reason, rather easy to confuse Vhagar with Syrax (or vice versa) at a certain point during the Dance. Perhaps because Rhaenyra actually flew into the Stormlands while Aemond was still there, or because Swann had motivation and opportunity to kill both Syrax and Vhagar at a certain point in time.

Without details like that the whole thing simply doesn't make any sense.

What does not make sense is to trust a man who was not there for the event over the account of an eyewitness.

Sorry but for now it is just makes the most sense for Munkun to be wrong. That might change if we get more information, but for now this is the most likely conclusion.

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On 28.2.2018 at 4:11 PM, Ran said:

Yep. Asked him directly on this and he said they were just made-up stories for the kids.

Wonder why it wasn't the case that it was truth.

Battling wildings would have made sense. And Viserys could easily have done it personally...

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10 minutes ago, Jaak said:

Wonder why it wasn't the case that it was truth.

Because it wasn't. :) 

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2 hours ago, Jaak said:

Text

2 hours ago, Ran said:

Because it wasn't. :) 

Plus it would mess up the lore.

 

Edited by The Grey Wolf

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8 hours ago, direpupy said:

Not really even in antiquity and Medieval times there was a clear differens between those dedicated to history and people who where more gossipers then historians. You learn the tell which is which when you study history like i did. The fact that Munkun made Grand Maester means that he was not a dedicated historian but a man with broad knowledge who could advise the king on many different matters, so to assume he is a historian based on one treatise is just plain wishful thinking, since it is far more likely he was not.

I did study history, too, you know. I did not major in it, but I know my stuff.

Nothing indicates that Munkun would have been one of those gossipers you refer to. In addition, ancient historians considered to be 'professionals' but used invented speeches and dialogues simply wrote historical fiction.

You have no evidence that Munkun becoming Grand Maester means he wasn't a dedicated historians. There is evidence to the contrary in Maester Gormon, a present candidate for Grand Maester who steps in for an archmaester, indicating that he must be an expert in the particular field of Archmaester Walgrave.

In addition, the very notion that the Citadel's degree of specialization is even remotely in the same degree as modern academics is ridiculous. You have to study a lot of disciplines to become a maester, and there is no indication that you are limited to one discipline even if you become an archmaester.

In that sense, every maester is a generalist, and there are most definitely no 'dedicated historians' of you narrow definition. 

8 hours ago, direpupy said:

This would require him talking to eyewitnesses like the squire we where talking about, something he does not seem to have done since his account and that of they only known eyewitness are different. Not to mention that he would not have had time for this during the regency and by the time things slowed down enough for him with Aegon III taking the reigns of the realm for himself not all the witnesses would be avalible any more.

Eyewitnesses would have been the sources for all the accounts, not just the one Tyrion referred to. After all, if nobody had seen Ser Byron's deed, nobody would know it happened, right?

And context matters. If Munkun heard Ser Byron supposedly attacked a she-dragon, then he would have gotten some context. And that context would have determined whether it made sense whether it was Vhagar or Syrax. An important part of the context would be the place where this  happened. This is not a 'Once upon a time...' anecdote.

8 hours ago, direpupy said:

For the very reasons you give above he would not have been able to write his treatise right after the Dance and like i said him being near to power means he was a general scientist not specialized in any one subject since he would have to be able to advice the king in every matter that came before the throne.

See above. The king also has no say in the matter of the appointment of the Grand Maester. If the Conclave wanted to make some geek Grand Maester who is only competent in a single field they could do that. It isn't very likely, though, that such people exist in the Citadel. They wouldn't get enough links to even become maesters.

8 hours ago, direpupy said:

Also being close to power does not mean that you have access to knowledge and information that is correct.

I never said that it did. But Munkun was in the ideal position to write a history on the Dance considering the access to real sources the man had. Primary sources in the form of royal documents and officials are to be found in KL, not in Oldtown.

8 hours ago, direpupy said:

Why would he not make a mistake like that? You are assuming this man is a competent historian working with solely correct information, based on nothing more then the man having been Grand Maester. I'm sorry but that just does not fly, he may have been a excellent adviser in many matters seeing as he made it to Grand Maester, but that does not automatically make him a good historian.

I base that on the fact that even a child would realize that Syrax is not Vhagar, and Vhagar wasn't an enemy of Aegon II and the Stormlords.

There were only little more than twenty dragons alive during the Dance, not that many to memorize. And those creatures were dreaded by all, considering the fear and awe they inspired. They would have been more famous than movie stars.

People would rather confuse the princes of the blood than the dragons they rode, especially in light of the fact that those creatures really grew old.

8 hours ago, direpupy said:

Quite easily actually, you would be surprised how often that kind of mistakes happen in historical treaty's even today.

I doubt there are many professionally published works of history in which Kennedy is confused with Khrushchew. And I'd put confusing a dragon with another dragon in that category.

8 hours ago, direpupy said:

What does not make sense is to trust a man who was not there for the event over the account of an eyewitness.

We don't have an eyewitness. We have a pretty well-read guy referencing an account which claims to be based on the account of an eyewitness. But we don't have access to that account.

8 hours ago, direpupy said:

Sorry but for now it is just makes the most sense for Munkun to be wrong. That might change if we get more information, but for now this is the most likely conclusion.

It doesn't make more sense in any meaningful sense because we cannot really assess the probability one way or another. You can prefer Tyrion's version because you like it better - or you want to believe him - but we don't really have the knowledge to make an informed decision on the matter.

4 hours ago, Jaak said:

Wonder why it wasn't the case that it was truth.

Battling wildings would have made sense. And Viserys could easily have done it personally...

With the dragons up there it was never really believable that the wildlings would have tried anything. Not even if they had had a king-beyond-the-Wall at that time - which they did not.

Jaehaerys I and Alysanne may have met wildlings, interacted with them - they could have even visited some villages beyond the Wall - but chances were never very high they had to fight any battles up there.

But it makes for a fine stories for children. And in the end - when the Targaryens go somewhere they should do something important. It wouldn't do to tell stories about a visit to the Wall and then make it as, well, impressive as Tyrion's. 

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1 hour ago, Lord Varys said:

With the dragons up there it was never really believable that the wildlings would have tried anything. Not even if they had had a king-beyond-the-Wall at that time - which they did not.

Jaehaerys I and Alysanne may have met wildlings, interacted with them - they could have even visited some villages beyond the Wall - but chances were never very high they had to fight any battles up there.

But it makes for a fine stories for children. And in the end - when the Targaryens go somewhere they should do something important. It wouldn't do to tell stories about a visit to the Wall and then make it as, well, impressive as Tyrion's. 

And Jaehaerys and Alysanne were up to no good. After all, they were taking a big chunk of Stark lands by force.

Of course the wildings were not going do try anything on their own initiative. Does not mean Jaehaerys and Alysanne did not "have to" fight wildings.

If Jaehaerys and Alysanne wanted to impress the North that they were Defenders of the Realm and knew better than Stark of Winterfell, fighting wildings might make sense. Like, take Vermithor, Silverwing and the lad Viserys with his Balerion, fly north of Wall and launch an unprovoked attack on a bunch of giants, mammoths and wildings peaceably going about their lawful business. Or, alternately, fly north of the Wall, be gone for some time, see nothing but empty forests, and on return lie about having fought giants, mammoths and wildings - lie not just to children but to adult brethren of Night Watch. But in the latter case, the Rangers would not eventually confirm the tale.

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We know that Viserys I's story was just a story. There is no room for ifs and whens. Nor is there any reason to assume that the people up there viewed their intervention and patronage of the NW as negatively. The Starks did, but they were just trying to keep their lands.

By the way: Where is your idea coming from that Viserys I ever sat so much as a foot in the North? The implication of the story about Alysanne and Jaehaerys I is that they were pretty young back then. There is no indication that they had any grandchildren by that time.

Edited by Lord Varys

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