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Elia Martell: Yes, another Septa Lemore speculation

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3 hours ago, Willam Stark said:
Already did, no evidence found.

Baseless assumptions are not evidence, sorry dude.

Remind me.  You don't have any position whatsoever on Lemore's identity.  Therefore you don't have to present any evidence.  You're just here to heckle people who try discuss the options.  Am I right?

But you DID say there was more evidence for Ashara than for Mellario.  But you never said what that "more evidence" was.  Never mind.  You don't have to answer.

Edited by Mister Smikes

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9 hours ago, Willam Stark said:

Irrelevant in our debate.

The "argument from silence" necessarily depends on the assumption that  children darkening with age would have been mentioned if it were true.  Countless novels set in the real world prove this not to be the case.  Hence, the argument from silence fails.

If you are not relying on the "argument from silence", what is your evidence?  You stated as fact that this cannot happen to Targs and therefore theories that rely on Baby Aegon darkening with age can be ruled out.  You got a quote from GRRM to give me?  Oh, I forgot.  The burden of proof is always on the other guy.  You're above all that.

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Yep you don't have any data, then why did you said that fair haired people (specifically Targaryen) darken with age without evidence ?

My position is that it is plausible that a fair-haired Targ/Martell toddler could darken with age, because nothing in the novels rules this out.

My "evidence" (if evidence is really required for so agnostic a statement) is that Targs are basically human beings, with only a handful of special qualities.  Hence, it follow that when they produce children that are (as adults) not blond, it might sometimes be the case that such non-blonds had lighter hair as children, as is true of many non-blonds (such as myself) in the real world.

Of the non-blond Targs we are almost never told their hair color as infants.  So there is simply no data on whether they started lighter and grew darker as they aged or not.  Unless you want to count Alyssa.

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Nope it is said that [Alyssa] had dirty blond hair, nothing more.

It says a bit more.  Everything after "as the princess grew older", including the dirty blond hair, is strongly implied to a late development, not matching her beautiful appearance as an infant; until we get to the phrase "and she had been born with" in reference to the mismatched eyes.  If she had had dirty blond hair from birth, the phrase "and she had been born with" would likely have been placed at the beginning of the sentence, so that it referred to both features, rather than merely being placed in the middle so that it only referred to the mismatched eyes.

I'm sorry if it does not rise to your standards of absolute proof.  To me, it is sufficient that it is merely suggestive.   If GRRM wants to surprise his readers, he's probably not going to nail things down to Willam Stark's satisfaction.

Edited by Mister Smikes

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4 hours ago, ATaleofSalt&Onions said:

This isn't that relevant to the prior argument, but I'm honestly curious as to how long Ashara was actually at court for and where things went from there,

Indeed. I have speculative ideas, but there's not enough evidence to know anything definitively. I'll elaborate on mine a bit, on the grounds that sharing, and hopefully also receiving, enables a wider picture and diversity of ideas to be incorporated into worldview (assuming that they, or parts of them, are 'better' than mine, IMO, for me. once heard of course.)

First thing to point out is that time Ashara spent at Dragonstone instead of the Red Keep would be time cementing affiliation to Rhaegar and Elia and their heirs. 
Second thing is that as (one of) Elia's Lady Companion(s) she'd almost certainly be where Elia was, nearly all the time, until dismissed/disgraced, though its possible she could have tasks apart at times I guess. Especially given her brother's position both on the Kingsguard and as Rhaegar's close companion.

4 hours ago, ATaleofSalt&Onions said:

because it seems like Elia and Rhaegar spent most of their time on Dragonstone

Yes, mostly.

OTOH "residence"  in this context doesn't just mean where they are currently living. It also means where their base is, even if they travel or temporarily reside in other locations. See 5 below.

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Meanwhile, King Aerys was becoming ever more estranged from his own son and heir1. Early in the year 279 AC, Rhaegar Targaryen, Prince of Dragonstone, was formally betrothed to Princess Elia Martell2, the delicate young sister of Doran Martell, Prince of Dorne. They were wed the following year, in a lavish ceremony at the Great Sept of Baelor in King's Landing3, but Aerys II did not attend.4 He told the small council that he feared an attempt upon his life if he left the confines of the Red Keep, even with his Kingsguard to protect him. Nor would he allow his younger son, Viserys4, to attend his brother's wedding.
When Prince Rhaegar and his new wife chose to take up residence on Dragonstone instead of the Red Keep5, rumors flew thick and fast across the Seven Kingdoms. Some claimed that the crown prince was planning to depose his father and seize the Iron Throne for himself6, whilst others said that King Aerys meant to disinherit Rhaegar and name Viserys heir in his place7. Nor did the birth of King Aerys's first grandchild, a girl named Rhaenys, born on Dragonstone8 in 280 AC, do aught to reconcile father and son. When Prince Rhaegar9 returned to the Red Keep to present his daughter to his own mother and father, Queen Rhaella embraced the babe warmly, but King Aerys refused to touch or hold the child and complained that she "smells Dornish.10"

1. Or at least thats what Robert's historians say. While this clearly has elements of truth to it, I can't help but feel that either or both of they deliberately overplay it, or are influenced by the rumours etc, rather than actual knowledge. See point 7 for example.

2. Reminder that Elia was Aerys' choice, not Rhaegar's.

3. Wed in KL. I imagine they were there some time before and some time after, though perhaps only a month or two after (and possibly less, but also [possibly a bit more).

4. (twice) Aerys and Viserys didn't attend the wedding. Thats a pretty significant insult to Rhaegar, Elia and Dorne, I think. Its the strongest sign I see of 1, but I actually think its more a product or Aerys' growing paranoia and irrationality than a deliberate insult. See note 7 again. 

5. They chose to take up residence at Dragonstone. That means their household would be based there. Almost its own court. Which is quite a lot different that having a set or sets of "apartments' in KL, which would be 'theirs'. Instead, they'd be 'guests' while they were in KL. 
I also think this is likely (at some stage I'm gonna forget to add these little qualifiers, probably already have, lets just say all of this is highly qualified speculation based mostly on historical and logistical practices and influences) quite a big logistical deal.  This isn't just a family getting on a boat and sailing off to Dragonstone, its got significance as to responsibility for guests, hosting choices, local power, employee-employer relationships, everything. Lots more than I can think of off the top on my head. IMO. I suspect, based on our Lady in Waiting discussion, you'll not agree, or rather, not be willing to estimate that far.

6. Is suspect that this was what Harrenhal was supposed to be about until Aerys spoiled it by deciding to attend - not to 'depose his father and seize the crown' violently, but to quietly test support for a Great Council or similar to name Rhaegar Regent over his increasingly insane father. I guess in a way that is exactly as described, but I seriously doubt Rhaegar had any intention of damaging the legitimacy of Targaryen family rule for personal power.

7. Which Aerys never did, not matter how 'estranged' they got. Rhaegar was always the crutch he relied on in the end, his strongest support. To the extent that when Rhaegar finally was found and put in charge (and remember, Connington was only chosen as a 'Rhaegar lite' when Rhaegar couldn't be found) he was even in charge of the assignment of Aery's personal Kingsguard.

8. Back to topic (sorry it s a passage with a lot of meaning packed in and that covers things that have very very limited other info), Clearly Elia was living (not just residing) on Dragonstone. As above, I suspect they both went there within a month or so of the marriage, if not earlier. I wonder though, if Rhaegar didn't still spend a lot of time away from Dragonstone, some in KL and some elsewhere. Seems like the situation at court, and the politicking and maneuvering would require some attention. And he'd need to be around at least some of the time for his 'younger bloods' faction (eg JonCon and co) to have any relevance against the 'other' factions, even if he wasn't leading it deliberately.
In good times and good weather its only a few days between KL and Dragonstone.
Or perhaps he really was almost permanently absent, and thats why the opposing factions were able to gain influence? Its hard to tell.
Its a fascinating situation with so little data.

9. Clearly he was away (at Dragonstone) for the birth, and went to KL for the presentation. Doesn't seem like Elia came for the presentation.

I suspect Elia spent very little time in KL after that first few months around the wedding time. Perhaps thats also part of the reason why Barristan seems to have not really known Ashara, but had more of a 'semi-distant worship' vibe going on (I know most of the reason is his position).
 

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56 minutes ago, Mister Smikes said:

To me, it is sufficient that it is merely suggestive. 

The biggest problem you have for your theory is that virtually no one else sees the 'suggestions' that you do. Even when you explain them. Does it not occur to you what that indicates?

Hence almost no one agrees that you present any actual 'evidence' supporting your theory.

I'll do just one example, but there are many throughout your arguments.

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As a babe she <Alyssa> was so like her late sister, Daenerys <the crown princess who was everyone's darling and had died suddenly (circa 36hrs from 'Mummy I'm cold' to death) of the Shivers aged 7, just 2 months before Alysanne found out she was pregnant with Alyssa> that the Queen oft wept to behold her, remembering the child she had lost. The likeness faded as the princess grew older, however; long-faced and skinny, Alyssa had little of her sister's beauty <which is nowhere described>. Her hair was a dirty blonde tangle, with no hint of silver to evoke the dragonlords of old...
...mismatched eyes... lopsided smile... nose broken playing with wooden sword at age 6... wore boys clothes... shunned other girls... more tomboy stuff... <this is typing from the book, not cut and paste, and the passage is longish, so sorry, no compete extended quote>

You claim that this 'suggests' that she had 'light' hair (you imply something like silver like her sisterm which we don't know) when born and it changed to darker hair. It appears to be the only instance you can find within ASoIaF (no, shaggydog doesn't count). 

What everyone else understands : 
 - as a baby she looked like her baby sister had. But babies especially change a lot very quickly, and many are born with no hair at all. 
 - we don't even know what colour hair her sister had - at all. Not all Targs have silver or gold hair. 
 - she looked like her sister despite the mismatched eyes. In other words, the phrase is talking about features than colouring, and 'baby features' at that, which are more diffuse, unformed, generic. The passage tells us more about the effect of the loss of Daenerys of the queen than about the look of Alyssa.
 - as she changed from a baby to a child, her features because more distinctly 'hers', instead of 'generic baby from the same parents who powerfully reminds mummy of the sweet daughter she lost less than a year ago'. 
 - as a tomboy child her hair was a dirty blonde tangle. This doesn't mean it had 'darkened'. it could still have been the lightest of light not-silver hair for all we know. It was literally dirty from dirt, and tangled. She didn't care for it. She wasn't a proper little princess all beautiful and sweet. Her hair was blonde, a mess, no silver, and thats all we have. Nothing more, no 'change in hair colour' is 'implied' or 'suggested' by the passage. 

If its only you reading a certain something into the passage, and your reading blatantly ignores all the context (eg, tomboy behaviour, hair all tangled etc) to find one, twisted-but-not-entirely-impossible interpretation to vaguely support one small sub-point ... perhaps you need to take a step back and re-examine your arguments?

I expect you probably won't accept this, just as you didn't accept the difference between growing up at the Palestone Tower vs the hilltop of Norvos for swimming implications. But it was there and clear to try with 'dirty blonde', so what the heck.

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On 9/23/2021 at 4:33 PM, corbon said:

The biggest problem you have for your theory is that virtually no one else sees the 'suggestions' that you do. Even when you explain them. Does it not occur to you what that indicates?

Hence almost no one agrees that you present any actual 'evidence' supporting your theory.

Really?  The lemming argument?  You are a lemming and you think I should be one too?  For shame!

First off, there are not many people participating in this thread, so it's not exactly a large sample size.  But even if what you said were true, it would still be the lemming argument.

I don't see why you can't respect different opinions.  You are under no obligation to be convinced by my arguments, and I am under no obligation to be convinced by your argument.  No, not even if you bring a posse to bully me into submission.

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You claim that this 'suggests' that she had 'light' hair (you imply something like silver like her sisterm which we don't know) when born and it changed to darker hair.

There is an implied suggestion that her hair changed in some way.  Maybe it got started brown and grew lighter.   That seems rather less likely though, for a variety of reasons (which should be fairly obvious).  The passage does explicitly contrast her dirty blond hair, unfavorably, with silver blond hair.   Also the passage does not say she resembled Danaerys "when born" but rather "as a babe".  "Babe" is a much broader category than "newborn".  Rhaenys, for instance, is still a "babe" when she dies at around age 3.  Rickon is twice described as a "babe" at the time of his supposed death.

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It appears to be the only instance you can find within ASoIaF

How many do I need to find?  In my opinion, I don't need any at all, including this one.  GRRM is under no obligation to give us such clues.  Blond children can indeed darken with age among ordinary humans, Sometimes they darken to "dirty blond", or go all the way to brown or (more rarely) even to black.  Targaryens are for the most part ordinary humans, though like Swedes, most of them (but not all) are blond even as adults, and if in a future book it turns out Aegon's hair darkened, no sane person will be able to complain that GRRM did not play fair with us.

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(no, shaggydog doesn't count). 

And as far as I'm concerned, GRRM did not even have to give us that.   But it does show that GRRM is familiar with the concept of hair darkening with age.  I see no reason why the notion would have some impassible species barrier in GRRM's brain.

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What everyone else understands :

So I guess a committee prepared what I'm about to read?  Was the vote really unanimous?  How about just speaking for yourself from now on?  Just an idea.

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  - as a baby she looked like her baby sister had. But babies especially change a lot very quickly, and many are born with no hair at all.

Most babies have hair at some point, and it don't take long neither.  "babe" is broader than "newborn".  And I find it hard to imagine a newborn bearing a particularly strong resemblance to a 6 year old girl so famed for her beauty that she had already been named queen of love and beauty at a tournament.  I also find it implausible that some stuffy maester would focus, decades later, on some inside information as to what a baby looked like immediately after birth.  And don't all newborns look like Winston Churchill?  But sure, fine.  I concede that I cannot absolutely prove that Alyssa had any hair whatsoever at the time her puffy newborn face resembled that of the beautiful Danaerys.  That's why I said this example was merely suggestive.

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  - we don't even know what colour hair her sister had - at all. Not all Targs have silver or gold hair. 

I already conceded we don't know what her hair color was.  But it is not as though all possibilities are equally likely.  Jet black hair is distinctly less probable in a child of Alyssanne and Jahaerys.  And if we consider those hair colors that are normally likely to change, over time, to "dirty blond" (or even "blond but not silver"), that would seem to narrow things still further.

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- she looked like her sister despite the mismatched eyes.

That's what it says.  I don't see the contradiction.  People mistake me for my brother, despite my eyes being blue and his brown.  Eyes are not really that noticeable most of the time.

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In other words, the phrase is talking about features than colouring, and 'baby features' at that, which are more diffuse, unformed, generic.

No.  It merely means that the resemblance, whatever it was, did not extend to both eyes being the same color

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The passage tells us more about the effect of the loss of Daenerys of the queen than about the look of Alyssa.
 - as she changed from a baby to a child, her features because more distinctly 'hers', instead of 'generic baby from the same parents who powerfully reminds mummy of the sweet daughter she lost less than a year ago'. 

Now you're just arguing against the text.  The text says she resembled Danaerys as a babe, but changed as she grew.

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- as a tomboy child her hair was a dirty blonde tangle. This doesn't mean it had 'darkened'. it could still have been the lightest of light not-silver hair for all we know. It was literally dirty from dirt, and tangled.  She didn't care for it. She wasn't a proper little princess all beautiful and sweet. Her hair was blonde, a mess, no silver, and thats all we have. Nothing more, no 'change in hair colour' is 'implied' or 'suggested' by the passage. 

Okay, that's one way around it.  I can't absolutely disprove that interpretation.  One of the reasons I called it merely "suggestive".

But it's not how I read it.  "Dirty blond" is, or at least can be, a phrase describing a particular hue of hair - specifically blond strands mixed with dark strands.  In my opinion, "dirty blond" in this context is meant in this way, and "tangle" means naturally curly and unruly and hard to manage rather than naturally straight and regular and easy to manage.  Joffrey's hair is (for instance) a curly blond tangle in (I suppose) this sense.  Nothing about the context suggests to me that the intended meaning is that she looked beautiful after half an hour with her maids, and less pretty after falling out of a tree into some bushes and then rolling in the mud.   It is a change that occurred as she grew - that occurred over the years, and not by the hour.  Nor do I read it as implying that she never bathed nor allowed her hair to be combed.

Just my opinion, and I could be wrong.  But if you can't convince me I'm wrong, I'll stand by it.  With all due respect to you and your Committee of Truth.

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If its only you reading a certain something into the passage, and your reading blatantly ignores all the context (eg, tomboy behaviour, hair all tangled etc) to find one, twisted-but-not-entirely-impossible interpretation to vaguely support one small sub-point ... perhaps you need to take a step back and re-examine your arguments?

No.  I considered that context and was aware of the ambiguity, which is one of the reasons I called the passage merely "suggestive".  But with all due respect, it seems to me that you are looking at only the context that suits you and ignoring the rest.   The context of the passage is that she changed as she grew, with the immediate context focused on physical changes.  But yes, I concede that personality is mentioned as well, which is what you want to focus on.  

And part of the context is the phrase "with no hint of silver to evoke the dragonlords of old".  Does not that context suggest he is describing the hue, and not the state of cleanliness?  It is, after all, hard to get your hair so filthy that one cannot see ANY of its normal color.

But even if the maester merely means that her hair was boring blond but not the dragonlord silver the maester seems to admire, the context still suggests that this might be a change, and might be different from the beauteous Danaerys, and/or from Alyssa as a beauteous babe.

Edited by Mister Smikes

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10 hours ago, Mister Smikes said:

Remind me.  You don't have any position whatsoever on Lemore's identity.  Therefore you don't have to present any evidence.  You're just here to heckle people who try discuss the options.  Am I right?

You are wrong, I do have a position on Lemore's identity, but you are not ready to hear me out, too busy playing the offended victim, letting your feelings drive the discussion, overreacting... You were the one arrogant enough to say "I have presented evidence" while you don't have any, I'm just showing you that you don't have what it takes to allow yourself to be that cocky. Maybe if you calm down a bit, admit that you don't have evidence, but only suggestions then I will talk about it. Nobody has evidence about her identity except GRRM himself.

11 hours ago, Mister Smikes said:

But you DID say there was more evidence for Ashara than for Mellario.

Nope I said that:

On 9/22/2021 at 12:17 PM, Willam Stark said:

I don't think that Lemore is Ashara, but this theory is far more likely to be true than your own, which has too many contradictions.

 

9 hours ago, Mister Smikes said:

If you are not relying on the "argument from silence", what is your evidence?

I'm just using the Hitchens's razor here, you said that you "have presented evidence" while you don't have any, a claim without evidence can be dismissed without evidence. If it was just a suggestion, I would simply say that I'm not convinced because I don't have serious reasons to doubt Quentyn's identity, his look match who he is supposed to be. Stop playing the offended victim, you shouldn't have used this fallacious argument in the first place, don't try to shift the burden of proof. You'll keep it until you realize that you don't have evidence, only suggestions, pretty bad ones actually, but we will talk more about it later.

9 hours ago, Mister Smikes said:

My position is that it is plausible that a fair-haired Targ/Martell toddler could darken with age, because nothing in the novels rules this out.

Plausible yes, but it's not an evidence.

9 hours ago, Mister Smikes said:

Everything after "as the princess grew older", including the dirty blond hair, is strongly implied to a late development, not matching her beautiful appearance as an infant

The late development is about the body shape as stated at the end of the same sentence. Her hair color is presented in the next sentence, it's a totally different matter.

9 hours ago, Mister Smikes said:

I'm sorry if it does not rise to your standards of absolute proof.

Again, suggestions are not proof.

9 hours ago, Mister Smikes said:

To me, it is sufficient that it is merely suggestive.

 Of course it is sufficient since it fits your narrative, but it's not a proof.

9 hours ago, Mister Smikes said:

If GRRM wants to surprise his readers, he's probably not going to nail things down to Willam Stark's satisfaction.

I agree, he wouldn't contradict himself on record and confirm information found on the books about Mellario's status to begin with.

But Mister Smikes stick on contradictions for whatever reason it seems.

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I'm just using the Hitchens's razor here, you said that you "have presented evidence" while you don't have any, a claim without evidence can be dismissed without evidence.

I presented a number of points in favor of Mellario.  I cannot force you to call any of it "evidence" if you don't want to.  But your are not really engaging me on any of those points.

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Plausible yes, but it's not an evidence.

I never presented the possibility of Aegon darkening with age as point of evidence in favor of Mellario.  I presented it in response to those who claimed this could be absolutely ruled out and (by extension) Mellario could be ruled out as well.   And you just agreed with me on that issue.  Thanks.

Edited by Mister Smikes

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1 hour ago, Mister Smikes said:

But your are not really engaging me on any of those points.

I did here, for your whole theory

On 9/23/2021 at 2:35 PM, Willam Stark said:

No problem, let's get back to Quentyn. We don't have reasons to doubt his identity, he looks like Doran who is a Martell, we don't have any hints about Mellario's physical appearence and even if she has Valyrian's features it doesn't matter because Quentyn took his father's features. In ASOIAF, when someone is said to look like another person, it always includes the hair and eye color as far as we know. If not the differences are explicitly mentioned in the texts.

Since Quentyn's appearence match his identity, we don't have more reasons to think he is in reality Rhaegar's son who had fair hair and looked more like a Targaryen, and again it includes hair and eye color (silver gold hair and purple eyes) if we don't have more details. We don't have any hints about Elia's specific appearence, so we don't have reasons to think she looked like Doran and transmitted her features to her son, Oberyn and Arianne don't look that much like Doran even though they are bloodrelated and have the typical salty dornishmen look (dark hair, dark eyes, olive skin...). We don't have reasons to think Rhaegar's son would have darker hair and eyes in adulthood when this case never happened in the books.

In a SSM about Doran and Mellario, GRRM explicitly said that Mellario left her children, we don't have any reasons to think she brought the real Quentyn with her at Norvos, because it contradicts the previous statement and we are talking about a key point, not a minor one. Finally we don't have any reasons to assume that Doran would send Rhaegar's son (in your headcanon) to marry him to Dany if he is involved in the plot aiming to put his own son on the Iron Throne. His co-conspirators wanted Young Griff to marry Dany, they had no reasons to hide it from him and he had no reasons to refuse to get along and they had enough time to inform him about the marriage.

 

 

 

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5 minutes ago, Willam Stark said:

I did here, for your whole theory

That is not addressed to any of what I would consider the points for Mellario.  It concerns subsidiary issues related to counter-arguments and/or the possible implications of Lemore being Mellario.  All of which can be evaded if you hypothesize that Lemore is Mellario but not the mother of Young Griff.

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14 minutes ago, Mister Smikes said:

That is not addressed to any of what I would consider the points for Mellario.

Give me those points then.

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16 hours ago, corbon said:

. Which Aerys never did, not matter how 'estranged' they got. Rhaegar was always the crutch he relied on in the end, his strongest support. To the extent that when Rhaegar finally was found and put in charge (and remember, Connington was only chosen as a 'Rhaegar lite' when Rhaegar couldn't be found) he was even in charge of the assignment of Aery's personal Kingsguard.

Aerys and Rhaegar's relationship seemed pretty bad at the time of the Harrenhal tourney.  However, after the Harrenhal tourney there seemed to be some type of reconciliation.  Assuming that some of Aerys' Kingsguards were with Rhaegar when he rode our of King's Landing at the start of winter's return, it seems evident that they rode off with Rhaegar with Aerys' permission.

After all, we're told that the Kingsguards were the last people Aerys still trusted as the war waged on, with the sole exception of Jaime, whom Aerys kept close at hand.  And the Kingsguards that Eddard encountered seemed very self-satisfied that they had been good, loyal Kingsguards throughout.

I don't know that it's true that Connington was chosen because Rhaegar couldn't be found.  I do think it's true that Connington was chosen because Rhaegar was away.  It appears that Aerys had no issue with Rhaegar being away from King's Landing at the start of the rebellion.  Presumably whatever Rhaegar was doing was authorized by the king.

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11 hours ago, Willam Stark said:

Give me those points then.

CORE POINTS FAVORING THE MELLARIO=LEMORE HYPOTHESIS

(1)  GRRM sets up a mystery regarding Lemore's identity.  @corbon has done a pretty good job upthread of laying out the textual evidence for this.  In particular, her remark "you are not the only one that must needs hide" suggests her identity may be important.

(2)  There is a certain literary logic to the suggestion that, if GRRM introduces a mystery character this late in the series, said person is probably connected to one or other of the 1000+ named characters already presented.  I don't claim I can prove this in any absolute sense.  It could well be that the hypothesis is wrong and Lemore will turn out to be no-one we have ever heard of before.   I merely suggest that it is a hypothesis that may be worth exploring.  However, your mileage may vary, and nobody is required to be interested in exploring this hypothesis.  Those not interested in exploring the hypothesis should feel free to stop reading here.

(3)  Some of the things we know, or think we know, about Lemore are (1) she is over 40; (2) she is a noblewomen of some kind, since she is addressed as "Lady"; (3) she has given birth in the past, judging from stretch marks; (4) she is attractive; (5) she speaks Westerosi; and (6) she has arguable connections to Dorne as evidenced by her association with Ysilla and Yandry.

(4)  Three characters have been identified as reasonably fitting this profile:  (1) Elia Martell; (2) Ashara Dayne; and (3) Mellario.  Feel free to make other suggestions. 

(5) In my view, Elia can be ruled out on the grounds of being almost certainly dead (feel free to disagree, but for now I won't belabor the point).  That leaves only Ashara and Mellario as our main candidates (and again, feel free to mention other candidates to consider).

(6) On the age issue, Mellario is a slightly better fit with the profile.  "over 40" fits "over 40" better than "under 40" fits "over 40".   And again, I'm  not ruling out Ashara or saying that Lemore's stated age has no wiggle room.  I'm just saying that actually fitting the profile is slightly better than sort-of fitting the profile.  Mellario has an edge on this one point, even if it is only a slight one.

(7) "Lemore" has a loose resemblance to "Mellario" with the letters/sounds rearranged.  For example, "Mellario" can be re-arranged as "Lemorial" or (if we ignore the double-l as lacking phonetic significance) "Lemoria", and then shortened to "Lemore".  No, I agree this is not nearly as good as the "Sarella = Alleras" clue.  But on the other hand, it is more of a connection than you see between "Lemore" and "Ashara".  Again, Mellario has a slight edge.

(8)  We meet Lemore in Essos, and Mellario is known to be in Essos.  Indeed, GRRM seems to have gone out of his way to place Mellario in Essos, even though this is hardly the most natural place for the wife of a Westerosi Lord.  Ashara is not known to be in Essos, and is not even known to be alive.  It is a weak retort to say that Ashara could be anywhere.  I agree that Ashara could be anywhere, but Mellario still better fits the clues we have.  The edge again goes to Mellario.  

The remaining points have to do with connecting Lemore to Norvos, where Mellario lives:

(9)  We meet Griff & Co. where the Little Rhoyne meets the Valyrian Road out of Pentos.  The next inhabited city, of any note, along the Valyrian Road, is Norvos.  Norvos remains the closest city even by the less direct route of travel up and down the Rhoyne tributaries.  Lemore obviously did not come from Pentos, so that only leaves Norvos, unless you think she came even further, from Selhorys or Qohor.  Camping permanently in the hills or rivers does not seem an option due to the semi-regular dangers from Dothraki or river pirates.

(10) We first encounter Griff & Co. through Haldon and Duck, who have been sent ahead to meet Illyrio.  They are riding horses, and on top of that, leading a team of pack horses.  Horses which presumably did not come by houseboat.   It is evident from this that not everyone in the company arrived at the rendezvous by river; and if they came by Valyrian Road, they would have been coming from Norvos.  And of course, when they start down-river, they do not take the horses with them.

(11)  Griff refuses to wait for Illyrio, because he is concerned about Dothraki movements and in a hurry to "start" downriver.  It is hard to imagine that Griff would come all the way up-river just to meet Illyrio, only not to bother meeting Illyrio, and then go back down again, if he was really that concerned.  Griff could not know that Illyrio would be delivering a dwarf, and the contents of the chests (fine clothes, supposedly) don't seem that important.   Why then, did Ysilla and Yandry bring their houseboat all the way up to Ghoyan Drohe?  The only answer I can think of is that they had to pick up other key members of the company, who in turn must have come along the Valyrian Road.  From Norvos.

(12) Illyrio's familiarity with Duck, Haldon and "our lad", suggest their base of operations is not that far away from him.  And again, the nearest city along the inland route of travel is Norvos.   Illyrio's ambition was to give them a "farewell feast before you start downriver".  A "farewell feast" obviously implies they have been in the area, and are now leaving.  

(13)  That Griff & Co's base of operations is somewhere up-river is evident from Duck's story about being sent up-river by the Golden Company to join Griff & Co.

I've considered Lemore's ability to swim and her supposed connection to the Faith of the Seven, and I don't agree these issues favor either Ashara or Mellario one way or the other.

Those are the most direct points of evidence I can think of for now, deliberately avoiding speculations about motives and implications and about what it all means.

And I am not offering "proof" of anything.  I'm just weighing the different hypotheses, and expressing the humble position that the Mellario hypothesis has somewhat more to support it than the Ashara hypothesis.  Nor do I mean to rule out the possibility that Lemore will  turn out to be no-one we have ever heard of, or someone who we have overlooked.

Edited by Mister Smikes

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On 9/23/2021 at 5:35 AM, Willam Stark said:

In a SSM about Doran and Mellario, GRRM explicitly said that Mellario left her children, we don't have any reasons to think she brought the real Quentyn with her at Norvos, because it contradicts the previous statement and we are talking about a key point, not a minor one.

GRRM says that Mellario has some resentment about having to be separated from her children, but he does not actually say how many of her children she is separated from.  2 children is still children.    It is actually hard to explain why she would need to be separated from all 3, and GRRM never actually says she is separated from all 3.  Doran and Melario may be estranged, but they not seem to be so estranged that he would bar her from all her children out of sheer malevolence.

As for my reasons for believing anything, you almost always get them backwards. or wrong.  In such cases, it is always other people's opposing reasons, and my responses, that are actually being discussed.  My actual reasons for believing or suspecting a theory are generally completely ignored. 

Edited by Mister Smikes

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1 hour ago, Mister Smikes said:

My actual reasons for believing or suspecting a theory are generally completely ignored. 

Now you have the chance: what are your reasons to believe that Quentyn is not who he is supposed to be, but Aegon son of Rhaegar and Elia ? What are your reasons to believe that Young Griff is the real Quentyn ? 

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10 hours ago, Willam Stark said:

Now you have the chance: what are your reasons to believe that Quentyn is not who he is supposed to be, but Aegon son of Rhaegar and Elia ? What are your reasons to believe that Young Griff is the real Quentyn ? 

See the list of points I wrote on page 9 of this thread, directly addressing this very same question.

Also, if Mellario is Lemore, that might have certain implications.  As for why I think Mellario is Lemore (which is the more on-topic part of this debate), see the giant essay I just wrote at your request, and in which you seem to have no interest.  See also the "Aegon is fake" theory; the "Aegon is a Blackfyre" theory, and the "Quentyn is Alive" theory.  The first two of these are fairly popular, and the last is unpopular.  But popularity is irrelevant to independent minded people.  A detailed list of supporting points could be made (and has been made) for all of them, just as I did with "Mellario is Lemore".   Each theory has its own reasons, and it is up to you if you want to be convinced by them, or even spend time examining them.   As for me, I became convinced of each of these theories independently, long before I started connecting the dots between them and considering the combined implications.

I could say more, but I don't really owe you my time.  If you want further discussion, I think at this point that a show of good faith on your part  might help.  I can show what might be evidence in the form of subtle clues, but I never claimed to have "proof"".  And you don't have to be interested.  We can agree to disagree.  

Much of the debate here focuses, not on my evidence, but the evidence offered by my opponents.    They say "Quentyn cannot possibly be Aegon because X, Y and Z".  "X, Y and Z" generally consist of assumptions and exaggerations not actually justified and proven by the text.  And as you say, what is offered without evidence can be dismissed without evidence.  But when I point out that such assumptions are unproven, you come barging in hurling the Hitchens Razor at me.  But in such cases, it is not my "evidence" that is being discussed, but rather the supposed counter-evidence of my adversaries.

Edited by Mister Smikes

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On 9/24/2021 at 12:49 AM, Willam Stark said:

You are wrong, I do have a position on Lemore's identity, but you are not ready to hear me out, ...

I asked, didn't I?  Anyhow, I think I've been a pretty good sport, writing essays at your request.  I think it's your turn now.

Edited by Mister Smikes

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On 9/24/2021 at 4:07 PM, Mister Smikes said:

CORE POINTS FAVORING THE MELLARIO=LEMORE HYPOTHESIS

I like this theory better than the Ashara Dayne one, but I still have a number of issues.

Doran still seems to be in communication with Mellario.  After all he sends one of Arianne's conspirators to Mellario.  So presumably she hasn't just gone awol.  So, it begs the question as to why wouldn't Doran have better intel on Young Griff  then he appears to have?

Lemore also seems completely unconcerned about the fate of Quentyn, and being part of the conspiracy to pair Young Griff with Dany seems a to conflict a bit too much with Quentyn's quest.  Even if Mellario isn't actually Quentyn's mother, she still raised the boy so there should be some sentiment there.

Perhaps more significantly is that we can probably piece together what Mellario looks like based on Arianne's appearance and the fact that she probably favors her mother over her father.  

We're told that Quentyn looks like Doran.  There is no description of Quentyn as having an olive complexion.  Arianne is short, buxomy, dark hair and eyes, and has an olive complexion (as does Trystayne).  We're specifically told that she takes after her mother in terms of being short.

Lemore doesn't seem to hold any of these traits to the best of my knowledge.  Granted Tyrion might not be the best POV to note someone's height, but we're not told of Lemore having an olive complexion.  As for her buxom, well Tyrion does stare at it, but knowing Tyrion he'd probably stare at most.

The other thing that we know about Mellario is that she's from Norvos.  If Lemore is from there we haven't been given any hint such as her accent or any specific beliefs that would give us a clue.

If we have actually met Mellario in the story, one dark horse candidate I would suggest that would check off some of the boxes above is Septa Scollera, one of Cersei's tormentors.

Quote

Septa Scolera was thick-waisted and short, with heavy breasts, olive skin, and a sour smell to her, like milk on the verge of going bad.

So short, olive skin, and "heavy breasts".  So fast forward Arianne another 20 something years and a number of extra pounds later, and this might be how she appears.

And interestingly enough, Cersei's other two tormentors, Moelle and Unella had been mentioned in the appendices earlier as serving under the previous High Septon.  But Scolera wasn't mentioned.

Finally, Scolera shaves Cersei completely hairless from top to bottom before her walk of shame.  Where might Scolera have gotten this idea from?  We learn from the Worldbook that this is how women are treated by the religious order in Norvos:

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Only Norvoshi priests are permitted beards; freeborn Norvoshi of both high and low birth favor long, unswept mustachios, whilst slaves and women are shaved bare. Norvoshi women, indeed, shave off all their body hair, though the ladies of the nobility will don wigs, especially when thrust into the company of men from other lands and cities.

 

Edited by Frey family reunion

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12 hours ago, Frey family reunion said:

I like this theory better than the Ashara Dayne one, but I still have a number of issues.

Doran still seems to be in communication with Mellario.  After all he sends one of Arianne's conspirators to Mellario.  So presumably she hasn't just gone awol.  So, it begs the question as to why wouldn't Doran have better intel on Young Griff  then he appears to have?

Two possible answers:  (1) No internet; (2) Doran does not reveal everything he knows.

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Lemore also seems completely unconcerned about the fate of Quentyn, and being part of the conspiracy to pair Young Griff with Dany seems a to conflict a bit too much with Quentyn's quest.  Even if Mellario isn't actually Quentyn's mother, she still raised the boy so there should be some sentiment there.

Well, we are now getting into the implications of Lemore being Mellario.  The Baby Swap is sort of a side issue.  I am myself of the opinion that Lemore being Mellario implies a baby swap, but of course I could be wrong.  So here's some possible answers.

(1) She's hiding her identity, so it is not in her interest to openly reveal to Tyrion that she is concerned about Quentyn.

(2) Assuming a baby swap, I see no indication that Mellario had any deep involvement with the real Aegon before the swap or the fake Quentyn after the swap; I would guess Mellario and Frog have met, but I can't guess more than that.

(3) Doran, who gives out information on a need-to-know basis, might not have told Mellario about Frog's mission. 

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Perhaps more significantly is that we can probably piece together what Mellario looks like based on Arianne's appearance and the fact that she probably favors her mother over her father.  

I don't believe that we can.  Genetics is too unpredictable and complicated for that.  Traits can skip a generation.  We are deluding ourselves if we think we can compare a handful of traits and conclude thereby that a relative is a son and not a nephew.

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We're told that Quentyn looks like Doran.  

Arianne thinks he takes too much after Doran.  She has in mind certain negative qualities.  It is never suggested they look identical.  

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There is no description of Quentyn as having an olive complexion.  

You just cannot do anything with the "olive complexion".  "Olive complexion", in most cases, just means "mediterranean heritage with an easy tan".  Doran is never described as having an olive complexion.  That, by itself, is not sufficient to prove he does not have one.  But he would probably not have one, for the simple reason that he is an invalid, who is probably kept sheltered from the sun, which would cause him (like many olive complexioned people under such circumstances) to turn pale.  If a one year old royal infant were to potentially have an olive complexion, it would not manifest by age one for the simple reason that one year old royal children are sheltered from the sun.   If a blond man were to display an "olive complexion" it would undoubtedly be called a "tan".

Arianne and Trystane most likely get their olive complexion from a combination of their father's genes + southern sunlight.

I cannot rule out a Norvosi Noblewoman having "olive skin" but the odds are against it.  Most likely, a "Norvosi noblewoman" would be of Valyrian stock, Northern stock, or a mix of the two.  

Recall Hotah contrasting his current southern climate with the pale, wan sun of Norvos. 

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Arianne is short, buxomy, dark hair and eyes, and has an olive complexion (as does Trystayne).  

She gets her shapely beauty from her mother, it seems, including the "buxomy" quality.  Dark hair and eyes plausibly from her father, or at least from her father's side (traits can skip a generation), since Doran's hair is white and we don't know its original color.   "Short" comes from both sides, I guess.

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We're specifically told that she takes after her mother in terms of being short.

Okay.

Quote

Lemore doesn't seem to hold any of these traits to the best of my knowledge.  Granted Tyrion might not be the best POV to note someone's height, but we're not told of Lemore having an olive complexion.  As for her buxom, well Tyrion does stare at it, but knowing Tyrion he'd probably stare at most.

No information here.  Lemore might be short.  She might not be.  She might be buxom.  She might not be.  I've already addressed the olive skin issue.  All women are tall to Tyrion and he seems to prefer the shorter ones.

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The other thing that we know about Mellario is that she's from Norvos.  If Lemore is from there we haven't been given any hint such as her accent or any specific beliefs that would give us a clue.

I don't recall Illyrio being described as having an accent either.  Nor Varys.  And Illyrio and Young Griff are implied to be almost a family in some sense, with Illyrio describing YG as "our lad".  I don't recall YG having an accent either.  Though he has clearly been saying somewhere in the middle of Essos.  In fact, judging from the clues I gave, it is hard to avoid the conclusion he has been staying in Norvos.

Anyhow, one can always demand more clues.  But if the author gives too many clues, he gives the game away.

Quote

If we have actually met Mellario in the story, one dark horse candidate I would suggest that would check off some of the boxes above is Septa Scollera, one of Cersei's tormentors.

So short, olive skin, and "heavy breasts".  So fast forward Arianne another 20 something years and a number of extra pounds later, and this might be how she appears.

And interestingly enough, Cersei's other two tormentors, Moelle and Unella had been mentioned in the appendices earlier as serving under the previous High Septon.  But Scolera wasn't mentioned.

Finally, Scolera shaves Cersei completely hairless from top to bottom before her walk of shame.  Where might Scolera have gotten this idea from?  We learn from the Worldbook that this is how women are treated by the religious order in Norvos:

Ah, but the topic is "Who is Septa Lemore?", and not "Who is Septa Scolera?"  Anyhow, for reasons already explained, I do not think "olive skin" can reasonably be deemed a clue that one is a Norvosi noblewoman.

Edited by Mister Smikes

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18 hours ago, Mister Smikes said:

Ah, but the topic is "Who is Septa Lemore?", and not "Who is Septa Scolera?"  Anyhow, for reasons already explained, I do not think "olive skin" can reasonably be deemed a clue that one is a Norvosi noblewoman.

That’s a valid point.  So as not to derail the topic, I’ll throw out a few other possibilities for Lemore that have occurred to me.  I’m not sure that I like them any better or less than Melario, but I think there are at least a few other possibilities.

1.  The original queen of love and beauty from the Harrenhal tourney, the fair maid Whent.  The Whent family seems to mostly disappear between the time of the rebellion and the time that the books start, leaving only Lady Shella Whent the mother of the Whent maid who seems to completely disappear from the story.

Rhaegar apparently drew the Whents into his super secret conspiracy which gave birth to the Harrenhal tourney.  It’s a good bet that Connington may have been involved in the plotting and planning of the Harrenhal tourney as well.  

So at the very least this would give a link between her, Rhaegar, and Connington. 

Furthermore, it’s a decent bet that the Whent women may have been a fairly devout lot, if Cat inherited her beliefs from her own Whent mother.  Thus a Whent girl might have enough knowledge of the Seven to pass as a Septa.

If so, then I suspect that Ashara might not be the only maid in Rhaegar’s orbit that got pregnant at or around the time of the Harrenhal tourney.

2.  Lady Jeyne Swann.  This is probably the biggest long shot, but it’s also probably my favorite theory.  

The theory being that there has been a line of revolutionary women coming from House Swann, who have been linked to the various outlaw bands that have been championing the rights of the disenfranchised in Westeros.

In AFFC and ADWD chapters, GRRM starts to give us information about the Kingswood Brotherhood.  And one of the Brotherhood members he starts to highlight is Wenda the White Fawn.  We’re never told about Wenda’s ultimate fate, but I have a theory.

I think when Barristan “liberated” Lady Jeyne and her septa from the Brotherhood, in reality Lady Jeyne (like Ravella Swann Smallwood who came after) may have been a willing captive of the Brotherhood.  And in reality, Lady Jeyne’s “septa”’s alias may have been Wenda the White Fawn.  

If so, then I think Wenda the White Fawn may also be the same head of the Septa House in Oldtown, that Ravella Swann Smallwood indicates is her great aunt.

And Ravella may be the clue.  Another Swann who is found amidst a band of outlaws.  Only this time, it’s made clear that Ravella is a willing host to the band of outlaws and apparently has been a paramour of one of the outlaws, Tom O’ Sevenstreams.  And Ravella also mentions having sent her own daughter to her great-aunt’s septa in Oldtown.  I think this great-aunt is the same Septa that along with Lady Jeyne was a “captive” of the Kingswood Brotherhood.  My guess is this is also the true identity of Wenda the White Fawn.

So if all of this is true, then my guess is Lady Jeyne may have found herself pregnant after her stay with the Kingswood brotherhood and as a result the pregnancy was hushed up and she was sent off to become a septa, probably under the care of her aunt.

And perhaps she would be the type of noble that Varys would want to recruit to help train his pet project Young Griff.  Someone who displayed a strong connection to the disenfranchised.  Now add to the fact that the Golden Company was being led by a descendant of the former head of the Kingswood brotherhood, and we have a link as to how Wenda’s pupil, Lady Jeyne, may have been brought into the fold.

ETA: Oh, I forgot to add my favorite part of the theory.  In a boat containing an ugly duck, it’s not a big leap of faith, that George may also have a beautiful (or at least handsome) Swan.

 

 

Edited by Frey family reunion

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