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Lady Barbrey

Winterfell - the Heart of Summer?

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54 minutes ago, Lady Barbrey said:

The Reed oath is amazingly suggestive, I agree.  And doesn't the Heart tree at Winterfell, with its freezing and fiery pools, seem the perfect place to make such an oath?  But it's also an odd oath. The swearing on ice and fire - both - seems old to me, an ancient part of the oath perhaps, whereas when they mention iron it seems new, because iron came with the Andals we're told.  What do you think of it?

This is me totally spitballing on this because the short answer is I never really given this much thought. I tend to think of Winterfell, the Wall, Summerhall, Dragonstone as being part of the same package and the oath is kinda weird, but the crannogmen remember things others have forgotten.

That said, I don't know that iron is new. I mean yes, the Andals came to Westeros with iron swords and knew how to work it because they learned from the Rhoynar (which incidentally, water magic), but iron was not a new thing in on itself.

The Iron Islands are filled with iron and the ironborn were there before the Andals and are supposedly descendants of the First Men. And they too have an ancient religion and like the northmen, the ironborn have kept to their own god and way of life for the most part.

So perhaps the oath has nothing to do with the Andals, but rather with the old gods (bronze) and the Drowned God (iron) because they are ancient.  

The way I see it, if the oath is as ancient as it sounds, then the iron part of it also has to be ancient. I'm not sure why the oath would be adapted to include the Andals. 

The flip side of that is that the oath was adapted and it represents the races of Westeros. Earth would be the children of the forest (those who sing the song of the earth). Water would be for the Rhoynar and their water magic (which seems rather similar to that of the children's). Bronze is for the First Men and iron for the Andals. 

Maybe the oaths is a coming together of all these elements as well as ice and fire.

Like I said, I'm really just spitballing on this. 

Edited by Alexis-something-Rose

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16 minutes ago, Alexis-something-Rose said:

This is me totally spitballing on this because the short answer is I never really given this much thought. I tend to think of Winterfell, the Wall, Summerhall, Dragonstone as being part of the same package and the oath is kinda weird, but the crannogmen remember things others have forgotten.

That said, I don't know that iron is new. I mean yes, the Andals came to Westeros with iron swords and knew how to work it because they learned from the Rhoynar (which incidentally, water magic), but iron was not a new thing in on itself.

The Iron Islands are filled with iron and the ironborn were there before the Andals and are supposedly descendants of the First Men. And they too have an ancient religion and like the northmen, the ironborn have kept to their own god and way of life for the most part.

So perhaps the oath has nothing to do with the Andals, but rather with the old gods (bronze) and the Drowned God (iron) because they are ancient.  

The way I see it, if the oath is as ancient as it sounds, then the iron part of it also has to be ancient. I'm not sure why the oath would be adapted to include the Andals. 

The flip side of that is that the oath was adapted and it represents the races of Westeros. Earth would be the children of the forest (those who sing the song of the earth). Water would be for the Rhoynar and their water magic (which seems rather similar to that of the children's). Bronze is for the First Men and iron for the Andals. 

Maybe the oaths is a coming together of all these elements as well as ice and fire.

Like I said, I'm really just spitballing on this. 

That last part is not spitballing, It's logical deduction and what I think too ;)

The main reason I'm keen on weapons is It's little hunter and fighter Meera who says that bit, while greendreamer Jojen says the earth magic bit.  They BOTH say, in unison, the ice and fire bit, as if those were gods that both Children and Men swore by, but I don't think that can be right. On the other hand, we're pretty sure that It's ice and fire that have imbalanced the seasons, suggesting that they may be responsible for the actual planet's rotation and inner constitution, rather than the natural flora, fauna and people on it. If my theory is vaguely true, then fire and ice are essential, but dangerous if not balanced and thus controlled, and the Starks do seem have worked in conjunction with the Children to control fire magic at least.

 

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20 hours ago, Lady Barbrey said:

Doesn't it make sense that if there were dragon riders, the Wall would be not only fused with dragonfire, but infused with it?

There are stories of pre-Targaryen dragons in Westeros, but are there stories/evidence of dragonriders?

 

9 hours ago, Lady Barbrey said:

I believe George is quite aware of science in key places so all is welcome!  I'm not sure how this would connect as I'm advocating for a much different landscape 10,000 years ago, but it may well crop up.  Your answer encouraged me to Google peat bogs!  

That would make the Neck a possible fire magic place? Not a volcanic one though.

And speaking of magic places, there was a series of videos by AnAmericanThinks on youtube about God's Eye, discussing how that's a very peculiar island geographically. The conclusion that the video came to was, I believe, that the island was caused by asteroid. But I also remember the video mentioning something about similar volcanic islands on our planed which was discounted as there's no mountains in the area.

Edited by wia

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You can tell me if this is too much of a tangent, but would it help to understand the nature of the wards on the various walls if we took a look at "smugglers" who are able to bring people through the walls? Or look at those characters who are able to climb over the walls?

Melisandre gets into Storm's End not because Davos tells someone how to find the cave for the rowboat, but because he actually takes her there. I think he has some kind of innate power of which he is unaware. This is why he was such a successful smuggler over the years.

We know that the Black Gate will open only for a sworn brother of the Night's Watch. Jon was also in the group of wildlings that climbed over the Wall. Could he have unwittingly enabled that invading group to make the crossing? They say they cross regularly, but did they always have a Night's Watch deserter in their previous crossings? Gared? Or do they have other individuals who are able to break through the Wall's magic and make the crossing?

Ser Dontos guides Sansa on her escape from the Red Keep. Maybe there was a specific reason that Littlefinger had to employ that particular fool/knight as a smuggler to get Sansa out of the castle.

Bowen Marsh seems to be associated with closing doors or bridges that allow people to cross. He urges Jon Snow to seal the gate at Castle Black. He also leads the rangers that defeat the Weeper at the Bridge of Skulls (which is a very curious crossing point that deserves closer examination).

I suspect that Hodor is the "smuggler" who allows Bran and his traveling companions to make certain crossings during their hike to the Three Eyed Crow.

Osha may be the smuggler who allows Rickon to go to whatever magical place he is now in.

Identifying the special crossing points might also be a worthwhile exercise. We know that Stannis and his army went around the Wall when their ships set them ashore at Eastwatch-by-the-Sea, right? Then there's the gate at Castle Black, the Black Gate at the Nightfort, and the Bridge of Skulls. Are there other gates at some of the abandoned castles?

Another thought is to examine the giant heart in the House of the Undying that Drogon destroys as Dany escapes the creepy, grasping dead ancestors (or whatever they are). Is that giant heart related to the Heart of Winter that frightened Bran?

Edited by Seams

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4 hours ago, Seams said:

You can tell me if this is too much of a tangent, but would it help to understand the nature of the wards on the various walls if we took a look at "smugglers" who are able to bring people through the walls? Or look at those characters who are able to climb over the walls?

Long time seams. I might be a bit rusty, but I always enjoy your tangents so here goes.

4 hours ago, Seams said:

Melisandre gets into Storm's End not because Davos tells someone how to find the cave for the rowboat, but because he actually takes her there. I think he has some kind of innate power of which he is unaware. This is why he was such a successful smuggler over the years.

I am pretty much ready to run down any tinfoil row, but giving Davos super human powers in any way, shape or form really does his character a disservice. Without something really concrete I can't see tossing away Davos' entire, wonderful place in this story for this.

4 hours ago, Seams said:

We know that the Black Gate will open only for a sworn brother of the Night's Watch. Jon was also in the group of wildlings that climbed over the Wall. Could he have unwittingly enabled that invading group to make the crossing? They say they cross regularly, but did they always have a Night's Watch deserter in their previous crossings? Gared? Or do they have other individuals who are able to break through the Wall's magic and make the crossing?

I have thought about this one a little myself. I wonder if it is possible that there is enough black brother blood in the wildlings from relationships, consensual or otherwise, during 10,000 years of raiding that in some way all wildlings can trace themselves back to a black brother which throws off the protection of the wall. I like this because of the idea that the KW themselves are the ones who have, over 100's of generations, weakened the walls protective powers.

4 hours ago, Seams said:

Ser Dontos guides Sansa on her escape from the Red Keep. Maybe there was a specific reason that Littlefinger had to employ that particular fool/knight as a smuggler to get Sansa out of the castle.

Obvious reasons like gullible, stupid, drunk, in a bad financial state aside there are a few (stretchng) ideas: House Hollard's sigil with three crowns shows the three weddings to Darklyn kings. While it is fairly far removed, there is some argument for at lesat the possibility of kings blood in Dontos. Further, if Dontos is in the line of one of the three Darklyn-Hollard Royal marriages he also has some trace of First Men blood from the Darklyn side

4 hours ago, Seams said:

Bowen Marsh seems to be associated with closing doors or bridges that allow people to cross. He urges Jon Snow to seal the gate at Castle Black. He also leads the rangers that defeat the Weeper at the Bridge of Skulls (which is a very curious crossing point that deserves closer examination).

Again a reach, but I think you could look at the myth of persephone for something a little instructive here. Marsh is referred to, enough times to make sure it sticks, as a pomegranate. You can look it up, but I am sure it is used to descibe him at least 6 times.

In the myth of persephone she eats 6 pomegranate seeds given to her by hades. The punishment for eating food in the underworld was one being doomed to spend eternity there. Demeter, her mother, caused all things to stop growing over mourning and Zeus intervened on her behalf. A compromise was struck that for the 6 pomegranate seeds Persephone would have to spend 6 months per year in Hades. So the pomegranate, Bowen Marsh, is quite literally the reason she has the door closed on her in hades (at least part time)

 

 

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18 hours ago, wia said:

There are stories of pre-Targaryen dragons in Westeros, but are there stories/evidence of dragonriders?

 

That would make the Neck a possible fire magic place? Not a volcanic one though.

And speaking of magic places, there was a series of videos by AnAmericanThinks on youtube about God's Eye, discussing how that's a very peculiar island geographically. The conclusion that the video came to was, I believe, that the island was caused by asteroid. But I also remember the video mentioning something about similar volcanic islands on our planed which was discounted as there's no mountains in the area.

Yes.  The fused black stone at Hightower is pre-Valyrian (before the 5000 year dynasty even began) but is very evidently dragonfire forged.  The style is much plainer, according to the Maesters, which would be consistent with Valyrian pre-ancestry, because archeological records often do show artifacts such as pottery starting plain and becoming more embellished with time within one culture.

Yi Ti is a mirrored asianized Westeros.  I believe that section of the World Book is a puzzle piece of the 'to go west you must go east' variety.  George and Elio were self-admittedly just having fun with Yi Ti and the Dawn Empire. So the Five Forts is only very loosely an independent entity, it exists to make a point about the Wall and 'othering'. And it is built of the same unembellished fused stone of the Hightower, pre-Valyrian made of dragonfire.  

So just based on this, there is a very good chance  that the Wall is ,at base,fused stone, and is another structure made with dragonfire in Westeros.  That is reinforced by Mel's reaction to the Wall and the growth of her powers when she is near it. Fire magic.

Just a summary of other things I think support this:

It is hard to believe when the Last Hero went to the Children for help he was only offered a sword to defeat the Others.  The only thing that could defeat hordes of wights in order to get close enough to the Others themselves would be dragon riders.  Swords are often interchangeably named after humans.  Arthur Dayne not only wields Dawn, he is the Sword of the Morning. Brienne is her ancestral sword, the Just Maid. What the Children seem to have offered was a person, Lightbringer, very possibly the same thing as a Morning bringer or Sword of the Morning) who could bond dragons.  The sword itself is significant and different, but it is named after the person who wielded it.  The fact that the Daynes have wielded that sword since time forgotten, and have the same colouring as Valyrians, suggests strongly that someone with that colouring, associated with light bringing, dawn bringing or morning bringing through the name of their sword and traditional title, was a pre-ancestor to Daynes and Valyrians - and rode dragons.

The Maesters give us evidence of dragon riders in dragon-fused structure, and make mention of artifacts like "dragon steel" that worked against the Others, and tell us that dragons existed in Westeros, and glance on a discounted theory that certain families claim Valyrians as lineal descendents.  George writes in an anomalous First Men family that has the Valyrian colouring and is associated with 'lightbringing' through title and sword name - morning and dawn. 

And the Others are defeated.  That's a pretty powerful sword unless the sword is a person, not a sword, that could bind dragons.

There should be more records and folktales that there were once dragon riders in Westeros; that there aren't suggest there were few of them that didn't hang around very long and were in an area very scarcely populated like the North.  And if the Children made the Valyrians they would not want to make the same mistake as they did with the Others, who bred and invaded.  I imagine they exacted a promise in exchange for helping the First Men.  This new breed of people had to leave once the realm was safe from the Others.

And so they did leave, forced out or in adherence to promise, after helping build the Wall and the base of the Hightower, and the First Keep at Winterfell with its gargoyles. The architecture with gargoyles at the First Keep at Winterfell is the same near that old inn on Dragonstone. Our only two known active geothermal hotspots in or near Westeros, where dragons would find a natural habitat. Connecting point A to point B through architecture - the dragon riders left Winterfell and found their first new home on Dragonstone before moving on to Essos proper, thus becoming the Valyrians.

They might have hung out in Westeros for as little as 20-50 years and there might never have been more than a handful of them, descendents of the Last Hero turned dragon-rider.

Sorry to go on about this, but I want you to be able to see this wider net of possibilities that independently don't prove a lot, but taken together start telling this story.

But this brings us back to Winterfell, where, if this theory is true, dragons lived in the hot spring caverns, a natural habitat (this goes back to Rufus Snows thread), so were readily available for the Last Hero to bond.

I am still trying to wrap my head around the Starks' relationship to the Others and the show keeps intruding on my thought about this.  But Bran's dream about those dead people impaled on ice spears while he was looking from high at the grounds of Winterfell, towards the underground crypts - the image that springs to mind for me is dead Starks impaled on ice sacrificed towards transformation into Others (not wights), in order to prevent the dragons or Valyrians from returning. 

The only thing missing is a resurrection?

I think this might be it, actually: The Others are using Craster's family, likely an old bastard branch of the Starks or Dustins, to breed back the Starkishness needed to make Others, and the process involves the right bloodline, transforming with ice magic, dying...And then resurrection.

We have heard the phrase " Fire consumes, ice preserves" often enough.  Those icy wafts of air in the crypts signify ice magic to me, to guard the Heart of Summer, but maybe also to serve as a cryotank - there might not be bones in the crypts at all, but fully preserved bodies.

Not all of them would rise, only the ones with concentrated bloodlines, and only the oldest would have been half transformed before the traditions and purpose of the Starks were forgotten?

I don't like that idea really, because it would be so cool if Jon finally met his mother.  Lol. The title of that could be "How I Met My Mother", Lyanna as Other Mother, decomposed from the long trip back from Dorne.  We even have a parallel to Jon's other mother:Catelyn! Stoneheart. 

Anyway, rambling on, but these are possible scenarios based on the scant evidence we possess.

 

 

 

Edited by Lady Barbrey

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7 hours ago, Seams said:

You can tell me if this is too much of a tangent, but would it help to understand the nature of the wards on the various walls if we took a look at "smugglers" who are able to bring people through the walls? Or look at those characters who are able to climb over the walls?

Melisandre gets into Storm's End not because Davos tells someone how to find the cave for the rowboat, but because he actually takes her there. I think he has some kind of innate power of which he is unaware. This is why he was such a successful smuggler over the years.

We know that the Black Gate will open only for a sworn brother of the Night's Watch. Jon was also in the group of wildlings that climbed over the Wall. Could he have unwittingly enabled that invading group to make the crossing? They say they cross regularly, but did they always have a Night's Watch deserter in their previous crossings? Gared? Or do they have other individuals who are able to break through the Wall's magic and make the crossing?

Ser Dontos guides Sansa on her escape from the Red Keep. Maybe there was a specific reason that Littlefinger had to employ that particular fool/knight as a smuggler to get Sansa out of the castle.

Bowen Marsh seems to be associated with closing doors or bridges that allow people to cross. He urges Jon Snow to seal the gate at Castle Black. He also leads the rangers that defeat the Weeper at the Bridge of Skulls (which is a very curious crossing point that deserves closer examination).

I suspect that Hodor is the "smuggler" who allows Bran and his traveling companions to make certain crossings during their hike to the Three Eyed Crow.

Osha may be the smuggler who allows Rickon to go to whatever magical place he is now in.

Identifying the special crossing points might also be a worthwhile exercise. We know that Stannis and his army went around the Wall when their ships set them ashore at Eastwatch-by-the-Sea, right? Then there's the gate at Castle Black, the Black Gate at the Nightfort, and the Bridge of Skulls. Are there other gates at some of the abandoned castles?

Another thought is to examine the giant heart in the House of the Undying that Drogon destroys as Dany escapes the creepy, grasping dead ancestors (or whatever they are). Is that giant heart related to the Heart of Winter that frightened Bran?

I really like how your mind works, Seams, though I think I'd rather you had a theory for something and then played with symbols - the deductive rather than inductive approach because I get lost among the bits.  What do all these gatekeeper and Charon figures add up to in your mind?  Are they just George playing with possible symbols or is there a purpose to them in a longer narrative to which each belongs?

I think understanding the wards gives us some idea of the purpose for why they were made and against whom, so if you could elaborate on one or more of your examples in that respect, this would not seem tangential at all.

Edited by Lady Barbrey

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2 hours ago, YOVMO said:

 

Again a reach, but I think you could look at the myth of persephone for something a little instructive here. Marsh is referred to, enough times to make sure it sticks, as a pomegranate. You can look it up, but I am sure it is used to descibe him at least 6 times.

In the myth of persephone she eats 6 pomegranate seeds given to her by hades. The punishment for eating food in the underworld was one being doomed to spend eternity there. Demeter, her mother, caused all things to stop growing over mourning and Zeus intervened on her behalf. A compromise was struck that for the 6 pomegranate seeds Persephone would have to spend 6 months per year in Hades. So the pomegranate, Bowen Marsh, is quite literally the reason she has the door closed on her in hades (at least part time)

 

 

Yes, I never caught this about the pomegranate.  And Jon is already figuratively Persephone, being half solar and half chthonic. So Bowen is the pomegranate that almost ensures he stays in Hades, at the Wall and ultimately dead? I feel there should be an element of temptation here, but I'd have to re-read.

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On 10/31/2018 at 7:56 AM, Lady Barbrey said:

If there is a Heart of Summer, a source for fire magic, it should be in Asshai or Valyria, right?  Fourteen Flames in one, and the shadow and blight of what seems nuclear fall out or something in the other.  Fiery or formerly fiery places.  Geothermal places.  In the south where they belong.

Once maybe, before the Arm of Dorne. But I would submit that whatever happened in Asshai was so horrendous an explosion in the Shadow that it either melted ice caps to swamp the Arm of Dorne, or the Children broke the Arm of Dorne not specifically to keep out immigrants, but to break the source of fire magic with ocean and the destruction and drought sweeping Essos. 

Valyria much later became the Heart of Summer for Essos, but never for Westeros.  It was no longer on the same continent. And when the Targs moved to mainland Westeros, it was only a matter of time before their dragons dwindled.  I know I've thought the Maesters might be responsible before, but I am just re-reading now and those dragons got progressively smaller. They weakened.  I think it no accident Dany had to birth dragons in Essos.

It's possible the only active source of fire magic for anyone not already imbued with it from Essos is at Winterfell.  And the seals that kept it contained possibly broke asunder when Theon burned it, which Summer saw - fire magic escaping - symbolically as a winged snake in the sky.

Winterfell has a twin of sorts in Hellholt, which is built on or around geothermal site. We don't know much about the Ullers beyond Elaria Sand but I feel like the fact that Meraxes was brought down there and Silverwing is rumored to have left a clutch of eggs in Winterfell might be meaningful as well.

Aside from that, kudos on an interesting read. For the record, I had previously pegged the Isle of Faces as the probable next Summer Pole but I like your going with this. You always have something new to think about.

Also I'm not sure if we discussed the Wall in Theories but...

I've recently wondered if the combination of fire and ice magic in the Wall might not create a magical simulacrum of flowing water, a barrier to many supernatural creatures and forces.

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14 hours ago, wia said:

There are stories of pre-Targaryen dragons in Westeros, but are there stories/evidence of dragonriders?

 

That would make the Neck a possible fire magic place? Not a volcanic one though.

And speaking of magic places, there was a series of videos by AnAmericanThinks on youtube about God's Eye, discussing how that's a very peculiar island geographically. The conclusion that the video came to was, I believe, that the island was caused by asteroid. But I also remember the video mentioning something about similar volcanic islands on our planed which was discounted as there's no mountains in the area.

I'm going to check out that video.

It is definitely a peculiar island because only from space can you tell it looks like an eye staring up from the middle of Westeros

But I try to stay away from space stuff in speculation because it leads to aliens and recently dragon space cars and whatnot.

Re the Neck - what might have been possible to warm this area (before it became a bog with water inundation) so that it became a microcosm with its own species like alligators (lizard lyons).  Is this just fantastical or do such places exist in the real world?  Back to Google for me for a quick search!

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14 minutes ago, hiemal said:

Winterfell has a twin of sorts in Hellholt, which is built on or around geothermal site. We don't know much about the Ullers beyond Elaria Sand but I feel like the fact that Meraxes was brought down there and Silverwing is rumored to have left a clutch of eggs in Winterfell might be meaningful as well.

Aside from that, kudos on an interesting read. For the record, I had previously pegged the Isle of Faces as the probable next Summer Pole but I like your going with this. You always have something new to think about.

Also I'm not sure if we discussed the Wall in Theories but...

I've recently wondered if the combination of fire and ice magic in the Wall might not create a magical simulacrum of flowing water, a barrier to many supernatural creatures and forces.

Is the Hellholt built on a geothermal site?  It sounds like it should be, and the Brimstone too!  But the sulpherous water is most commonly a result of buildup of decayed organic matter releasing hydrogen sulfide, though it can be formed in volcanoes too.  There is nothing to me that says it is actively geothermic but I just read the wiki, so can't remember the reference in the books.  Was there mention it was on a hot springs, volcanic or other actively geothermal spot? Because I might have to revise my theory if so : (

I purposely stayed away from rumours of egg-laying!  I believe the Winterfell hot springs and their likely caverns a natural habitat for dragons of course.  If there were dragons on continental Westeros, this would be the likeliest place to find them in a continent suspiciously free of geothermal areas.  And I can see why a dragon might lay an egg there, but I didn't want to go that far with this theory based on that rumour. AlaskanSandman thinks Alysanne's daughter Gael might be Alaric Starks child, and that could be just as likely.  Nothing in my theory is built on any rumours, just observation and deduction from little disparate bits of more factual evidence.  Could be adding up wrong, of course.

Yes, part of wrestling with a summer pole of sorts went into this theory, because of the seasons and rebalancing them.  I kept insisting that dragons could have found their natural habitat at the hot springs, the only actively geothermal area we knew of, and then was like, wait a minute.  That means they are connected to the molten core of the planet.  So I took another look.  That Godswood is incredibly suggestive of a place where  ritualized rebalancing could take place, connected to both frozen, molten cores, the root system of a great weirwood, and the water.  Everything is there in one spot.

I actually believe this is where Others and Valyrians were 'forged' to begin with.  Think of a person as a sword, the raw metal, which partially determines the Sword you produce.  Forge it in fire hot enough to shape it, then temper or quench it with cold water to cool and hold its shape.  Metaphorically, that Winterfell grove is perfect.

And then suddenly, all these other metaphor sets found throughout the series start making sense too.

Flowing water through the Wall, like hot springs in the walls of Winterfell?  I like it very much.  The water definitely plays a part, not only as you say traditionally a place the supernatural can't cross, but for circulation, movement.  Heart's blood moves. The Rhoynar saying their minor river gods played a part in the song last time to end the Long Night is true.

Thank you for this, because aren't we getting a sense of the Reed's oath now?  It's like a recipe.

Start with a greenseer/skinchanger attuned to earth or water.  Raw material.

Forge like a metal like warm bronze or cold iron - the forging process, heat, cold and water, magical transformation

The result is ice and fire.  People.

@Alexis-something-Rose might have been right, it's the metals not the weapons, the forging not the finished product, that is implied by that middle line.

 

 

 

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1 hour ago, Lady Barbrey said:

Is the Hellholt built on a geothermal site?  It sounds like it should be, and the Brimstone too!  But the sulpherous water is most commonly a result of buildup of decayed organic matter releasing hydrogen sulfide, though it can be formed in volcanoes too.  There is nothing to me that says it is actively geothermic but I just read the wiki, so can't remember the reference in the books.  Was there mention it was on a hot springs, volcanic or other actively geothermal spot? Because I might have to revise my theory if so :(

 

Hmmmmm, you may be right but the impression I had was that Hellholt was in a fairly barren area so I assumed this had to be the result of something bubbling up.

Quote

I purposely stayed away from rumours of egg-laying!  I believe the Winterfell hot springs and their likely caverns a natural habitat for dragons of course.  If there were dragons on continental Westeros, this would be the likeliest place to find them in a continent suspiciously free of geothermal areas.  And I can see why a dragon might lay an egg there, but I didn't want to go that far with this theory based on that rumour. AlaskanSandman thinks Alysanne's daughter Gael might be Alaric Starks child, and that could be just as likely.  Nothing in my theory is built on any rumours, just observation and deduction from little disparate bits of more factual evidence.  Could be adding up wrong, of course.

I'm mostly indifferent to eggs myself. We have plenty, I just feel that there is some kind of symmetry between the North and Dorne?

Quote

Yes, part of wrestling with a summer pole of sorts went into this theory, because of the seasons and rebalancing them.  I kept insisting that dragons could have found their natural habitat at the hot springs, the only actively geothermal area we knew of, and then was like, wait a minute.  That means they are connected to the molten core of the planet.  So I took another look.  That Godswood is incredibly suggestive of a place where  ritualized rebalancing could take place, connected to both frozen, molten cores, the root system of a great weirwood, and the water.  Everything is there in one spot.

I actually believe this is where Others and Valyrians were 'forged' to begin with.  Think of a person as a sword, the raw metal, which partially determines the Sword you produce.  Forge it in fire hot enough to shape it, then temper or quench it with cold water to cool and hold its shape.  Metaphorically, that Winterfell grove is perfect.

That's an interesting idea. As you say, all in one spot. My own thought is that dragons are, in a sense, volcanoes- the fires of the earth made flesh, or rather infused into flesh. wyverns+fire=dragons

1 hour ago, Lady Barbrey said:

Flowing water through the Wall, like hot springs in the walls of Winterfell?  I like it very much.  The water definitely plays a part, not only as you say traditionally a place the supernatural can't cross, but for circulation, movement.  Heart's blood moves. The Rhoynar saying their minor river gods played a part in the song last time to end the Long Night is true.

Thank you for this, because aren't we getting a sense of the Reed's oath now?  It's like a recipe.

Start with a greenseer/skinchanger attuned to earth or water.  Raw material.

Forge like a metal like warm bronze or cold iron - the forging process, heat, cold and water, magical transformation

The result is ice and fire.  People.

Indeed:

Quote
It's made of ice," Jon pointed out.
"You know nothing, Jon Snow. This wall is made o' blood."
...ASoS
Quote

There was a saying Jon had heard from the older men at Castle Black: the Wall has more moods than Mad King Aerys, they'd say, or sometimes, the Wall has more moods than a woman. On cloudy days it looked to be white rock. On moonless nights it was as black as coal. In snowstorms it seemed carved of snow. "

...ADwD

And of course the Wall is often described as weeping.

Fire+Ice people- are they a return to a kind of balance or symmetry or a thing in themselves?

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4 minutes ago, hiemal said:

Hmmmmm, you may be right but the impression I had was that Hellholt was in a fairly barren area so I assumed this had to be the result of something bubbling up.

I'm mostly indifferent to eggs myself. We have plenty, I just feel that there is some kind of symmetry between the North and Dorne?

That's an interesting idea. As you say, all in one spot. My own thought is that dragons are, in a sense, volcanoes- the fires of the earth made flesh, or rather infused into flesh. wyverns+fire=dragons

Indeed:

And of course the Wall is often described as weeping.

Fire+Ice people- are they a return to a kind of balance or symmetry or a thing in themselves?

Yes, they are molten fire - Dany says it over and over again describing them. I've had that thought about Wyverns and fire too, implied in the World Book, and it could be true.  Seems like something a Qyburn might do.  I am half-anticipating and half-dreading what Ser Frankenstein might produce next.

What do you think of fire and ice people?  

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2 hours ago, Lady Barbrey said:

Yes, they are molten fire - Dany says it over and over again describing them. I've had that thought about Wyverns and fire too, implied in the World Book, and it could be true.  Seems like something a Qyburn might do.  I am half-anticipating and half-dreading what Ser Frankenstein might produce next.

What do you think of fire and ice people?  

I'm still thinking about a few things, fish grails and wolves with fish in their mouths, etc but in broad general terms I think you are right. I've always thought that the Starks had some very sinister skeletons in their closet/crypt and I likewise think that "Winter is coming" was originally a threat and that the Stark family has taken in a great many bloodlines, made a great many vows before a great many heart-trees and that they may have forgotten who they used to be and the the price they paid for it. 

Quote

"So many vows . . . they make you swear and swear. Defend the king. Obey the king. Keep his secrets. Do his bidding. Your life for his. But your father. Love your sister. Protect the innocent. Defend the weak. Respect the gods. Obey the laws. It's too much. No matter what you do, you're forsaking one vow or the other."

...ACoK

 

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1 hour ago, hiemal said:

I'm still thinking about a few things, fish grails and wolves with fish in their mouths, etc but in broad general terms I think you are right. I've always thought that the Starks had some very sinister skeletons in their closet/crypt and I likewise think that "Winter is coming" was originally a threat and that the Stark family has taken in a great many bloodlines, made a great many vows before a great many heart-trees and that they may have forgotten who they used to be and the the price they paid for it. 

 

Fish grails?  The Grail is heavily connected to the ichthus, the fish, that's why the myth is called the Fisher King. Is that what you mean?  A wolf with a fish in its mouth sounds like a Stark caught a Tully!  Tell me more.

Love the implication the Starks are paying for something - Faustian?

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14 hours ago, Lady Barbrey said:

Yes, I never caught this about the pomegranate.  And Jon is already figuratively Persephone, being half solar and half chthonic. So Bowen is the pomegranate that almost ensures he stays in Hades, at the Wall and ultimately dead? I feel there should be an element of temptation here, but I'd have to re-read.

There is a lot of temptations going on here. The same way Robb was raised for lordship, Jon was raised with the deeply ingrained knowledge that lordship...even legitimacy....was not for him. Robb would be the lord, have the castle and the sword. But now, despite a life of assurance that that would never happen, Jon has the title, has the castle and the VS Sword. Somewhere in his mind I would think he feels guilty about this. This is why tries to ride to join Robb.....this is why he decides to Ride to winterfell after the pink letter.

 

In the same way that Persephone is tempted by Hades with something she desperately needs but knows full well she ought not take, Jon has reached out and taken a lordship, a VS sword and a castle that he has learned all his life are not his. I suppose for the analogy to work perfectly Marsh would need to play the role of Hades being the tempter. Off the top of my head I can only shoe horn this by saying that Bowen Marsh is a natural father figure to Jon. Jon is a steward and Marsh is the Lord Steward. During the great ranging Marsh is left castellan of Castle Black by Mormont and is acting Lord Commander when Mormont is killed. After he takes his Night's Watch vows it is Marsh who brings Jon food (blueberries and cream) from "the lord commanders own table"

So you have a father figure offering fruit to Jon and Jon taking it alone with the other temptations he is eventually given which keep him locked in Castle Black

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On 10/31/2018 at 4:56 AM, Lady Barbrey said:

I have always been curious about a few logical inconsistencies in the tales we have regarding the First Men, particularly one the Maesters seem perplexed by as well: why did the Children swamp the Arm of Dorne when the First Men had already arrived and were well-established? 

Another thing that seems to be missing in these histories is mention of humans with fire abilities.  In fact, aside from mention there were once dragons in Westeros, and a few structures of fused black stone, and mention of dragon steel, the continent seems suspiciously free of fire magic. It is also free of, to our knowledge, active geothermal activity aside from a few specific places.   We hear of no volcanoes other than at Dragonstone, but Dragonstone is an island, surrounded by ocean.  Similarly, we hear of obsidian on Skagos, but it too is an island.  Casterly Rock could well have been volcanic once, with those gold mines, but it could be millions of years since it was once active, and that goes for other mining on the continent too.  

The only place on this vast continent, at least below the Wall, that we know has active geothermal activity is at the hot springs under and surrounding Winterfell.  We are also specifically told Winterfell was never leveled, following the lay of the land, giving the impression of the kind of hot spring caverns underneath you might find in Iceland and would not want to disturb. (An actual example is from the show, where Jon and Ygritte meet in an underground hotspring cavern actually in Iceland.  But no hot springs in the books.)

Recently, on the Fire and Blood Excerpt thread, Ran joined us and suggested something that had never actually occurred to me before about the Wall.  I knew the Wall was a barrier to the Others and wights, but I did not know it actually was a kind of a magical restraining wall - all ice magic emanating from the Heart of Winter, the source of ice magic, is likely contained/restrained by it. So even if the Others managed to go around the Wall, I deduced, they would not be able to practice necromancy to the south of it, because they would be cut off from their source of magic. (The wights brought across during the day, it was explained, were already changed (and presumedly pre-programmed) so needed no new influx of ice magic from the other side of the Wall to carry out their attack on LC Mormont).

Also, from the same discussion, I started to wonder about the Wall itself.  Melisandre loves the Wall.  It enhances her fire magic. ( Unlike the walls of Storms End, where the spells disrupt fire magic.) Almost as if it were made from dragonfire, because dragons cause fire magic to work better. I also thought about the Wall-equivalent in Essos, the Five Forts, which is made of the same unembellished fused black stone as Oldtown, suggesting to the Maesters pre-Valyrian dragonfire built both the Five Forts and the Hightower base.  Was this a hint in the World Book that the Wall at base was not made from ice and earth magic, but from fire magic?   

Doesn't it make sense that if there were dragon riders, the Wall would be not only fused with dragonfire, but infused with it?  What do we know stops the Others?  Volcanic obsidian - dragonglass (which also seems to channel fire magic, e.g. the glass candles). Dragon bone possibly, the dragon steel of pre-Valyria Westeros? Valyrian steel blades, made with blood and dragonfire.  And dragonfire itself.

So there we have this iced-over wall, certainly some of its top layer as well made from ice, but at base - is it fused black stone made from dragonfire coated in feet of ice and snow?

This had potential.  

Where else, I wondered, might be constructed of fire magic?  We're told Bran the Builder built Winterfell too.  Was something up there?  Had Winterfell walls been constructed of fused black stone to keep ice magic out?

They aren't.  And it became fairly clear to me that something altogether different was happening at Winterfell. The Winterfell crypts were cold for no reason, situated so close to the hot springs, and in fact the iciness of the wafts of cold from the crypts seemed far more reminiscent of the chilled air that came with the arrival of the Others.   All those cold icy statues and corpses lined up like sentinels for miles, one level deeper than the next, the oldest and deepest level caved in. They were like Watchers on the Wall made of stone.  And It's weird because up in the Godswood, the trees are described the same way, as watchers and sentinels and soldiers in this grove that contains the Heart tree, a bottomless freezing pool, and hot spring pools. Earth, ice, and fire in one place, the hot springs caused by the molten core of the earth, the freezing pool caused by a frozen core, and roots and water (the song of the Rhoyne?)  to circulate and connect them. With trees standing guard over it all.

We know there's something icy about the Starks.  We know there must always be a Stark in Winterfell.  I always thought this had to do with protecting the North from the Others even if they might be related to them!.  But thinking about the Wall possibly made of fire magic to restrain the magic from the Heart of Winter from spilling into Westeros proper, I wondered if perhaps the crypts served a similar but opposite purpose.  

Was the Heart of Summer, a source if not the source of fire magic in Westeros, being contained by ice magic in the crypts?

I can't pull quotes but I want to draw your attention to a few dream images you're already familiar with, by paraphrase:

* Jon sheathed in black ice with fiery sword

* Arya in a tunnel, kissing the cold earth, and shafts of fire spouting up from beneath

*Bran in that prophetic dream, he's climbing then falling from the tower towards the grounds of Winterfell, Bloodraven urging him to fly not fall, and beneath him a thousand men impaled on ice spears, and then swinging back that curtain of light - of truth I think now - to see the Heart of Winter, "and hot tears fell and burned his cheeks".

When he awakes, he names his direwolf Summer.

How to interpret Bran's vision?  I thought those were Greenseers on ice spikes that fell to Other magic, or maybe they were Greenseers but icy ones, the ice spears replacing roots.  But maybe, because he was falling towards the grounds of Winterfell, facing the ground, what he saw were his ancestors under the ground, the Starks of Winterfell, transformed by ice magic and death into guardians against fire magic.  What he saw at the actual Heart of Winter I don't know, but how curious his tears were so hot they burned his cheeks as if made of that hot spring water, and he woke to call his wolf Summer (a reaction I thought to the terrible sight, and I'm sure it was, but in context...).

So how might the Heart of Summer be in the midst of the icy North, guarded by ice magic and  icy Starks from diffusing as a source to the rest of Westeros?

If there is a Heart of Summer, a source for fire magic, it should be in Asshai or Valyria, right?  Fourteen Flames in one, and the shadow and blight of what seems nuclear fall out or something in the other.  Fiery or formerly fiery places.  Geothermal places.  In the south where they belong.

Once maybe, before the Arm of Dorne. But I would submit that whatever happened in Asshai was so horrendous an explosion in the Shadow that it either melted ice caps to swamp the Arm of Dorne, or the Children broke the Arm of Dorne not specifically to keep out immigrants, but to break the source of fire magic with ocean and the destruction and drought sweeping Essos. 

Valyria much later became the Heart of Summer for Essos, but never for Westeros.  It was no longer on the same continent. And when the Targs moved to mainland Westeros, it was only a matter of time before their dragons dwindled.  I know I've thought the Maesters might be responsible before, but I am just re-reading now and those dragons got progressively smaller. They weakened.  I think it no accident Dany had to birth dragons in Essos.

It's possible the only active source of fire magic for anyone not already imbued with it from Essos is at Winterfell.  And the seals that kept it contained possibly broke asunder when Theon burned it, which Summer saw - fire magic escaping - symbolically as a winged snake in the sky. 

I apologize for the lack of quotes.  I can't pull them with this tablet.  I don't even know what I've written I'm so tired, but will edit this in the next few days.

Am I off my head?  It wouldn't be the first time with speculation. But I think it makes logical sense of key points and anomalies, and most of all symbolism.  

Jon is a mix of earth magic, and potential ice and fire magic.  If there is a place where those magics funnel or catalyst or crucible to rebalance the seasons, won't it be at Winterfell, at the Heart Tree, with the Heart of Summer and possibly even Heart of Winter (at least connected when the Wall comes down) in the same place?  I think so.  Maybe ;)

 

 

I would venture the Starks are both. Im working on a thread to tear apart the books one by one so we can see what was really in place when. In there though one point im making that is relevant here is the example of two Tourneys, the Hands, and Harrenhal

In one, we have Rhaegar of Valyria, wearing black armor with red rubies giving a blue rose to Lyanna Stark. Who is later kidnapped, allegedly by Rhaegar from unknown sources. 

In the other, we have Loras Tyrell of Westeros, wearing silver armor with blue sapphires giving a red rose to Sansa Stark who we know through first hand accounts was taken by Dontos as a proxy for Little Finger, and Loras was never interested in her.

In both cases, what appear to be Fire and Ice are giving a rose (red and blue) to a Stark. To me implying that Starks are purple and either the source or the mix. Considering both fire and ice are stealing brides from Starks (Rhaegar and Corpse Queen), it stands to reason the Starks are the source of both sides. Both Valyrians and Others must turn to the Starks to replenish their houses more or less. With both on the cusp of extinction so far as we know. Only a few others have popped up and only a couple Targaryens are left. 

Edited by AlaskanSandman

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No, I don't think WF is the heart of summer because it is mentioned more than once in the saga and the extra material that the Starks of Winterfell are the kings of winter not summer.

The World of Ice and Fire - The North     The vast and frigid realm of the Kings of Winter, the Starks of Winterfell, is generally considered the first and oldest of the Seven Kingdoms, in that it has endured, unconquered, for the longest. The vagaries of geography and history set the North apart from their southron neighbors./

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On 10/31/2018 at 3:32 PM, Lady Barbrey said:

Her magical creature could not pass of its own volition so she had to get past the walls and then birth it.  Storms End did not make her weak.  But it did disrupt her magic. Once on the other side - could she use magic again or was that a programmed shadow ( like the wights at Winterfell), so she just had to deliver it? Would have to look at it again in more detail. 

If Mel crosses I expect her magic to work similar to earth magic.  She can cross, her shadows can't.  But she can access her magic again on the other side, which is what the Others can't do.

The way I view it is Mel isn't all she thinks she is.  It is revealed in book five that her chest of ingredients for making potion and powder goodies is dwindling. Cap that off with both Mel & Stannis know that Stannis' Lightbringer is false, a mummers trick.

A Dance with Dragons - Melisandre I      Her sleeves were full of hidden pockets, and she checked them carefully as she did every morning to make certain all her powders were in place. Powders to turn fire green or blue or silver, powders to make a flame roar and hiss and leap up higher than a man is tall, powders to make smoke. A smoke for truth, a smoke for lust, a smoke for fear, and the thick black smoke that could kill a man outright. The red priestess armed herself with a pinch of each of them.    The carved chest that she had brought across the narrow sea was more than three-quarters empty now. And while Melisandre had the knowledge to make more powders, she lacked many rare ingredients. My spells should suffice. She was stronger at the Wall, stronger even than in Asshai. Her every word and gesture was more potent, and she could do things that she had never done before. Such shadows as I bring forth here will be terrible, and no creature of the dark will stand before them. With such sorceries at her command, she should soon have no more need of the feeble tricks of alchemists and pyromancers./

I don't know how Mel's shadows that she produces work other than Mel was sucking the life outta Stannis. Cat thinks that the shadow she saw kill Renly looked like Stannis. Stannis tells Davos he had a dream about Renly's death but he [Stannis] didn't do it. And Davos thought the shadow Mel produced under SE had the look of Stannis.

A Clash of Kings - Davos II     "And for Renly?" The words were out before Davos could stop to consider them.    For a long time the king did not speak. Then, very softly, he said, "I dream of it sometimes. Of Renly's dying. A green tent, candles, a woman screaming. And blood." Stannis looked down at his hands. "I was still abed when he died. Your Devan will tell you. He tried to wake me. Dawn was nigh and my lords were waiting, fretting. I should have been ahorse, armored. I knew Renly would attack at break of day. Devan says I thrashed and cried out, but what does it matter? It was a dream. I was in my tent when Renly died, and when I woke my hands were clean."/

Lets look at an obscure quote between Jaime and Brienne --- and notice that --- the air grew cold when the shadow invaded Renly's tent.

A Storm of Swords - Jaime II     Lady Catelyn was there when His Grace was murdered, she saw. There was a shadow. The candles guttered and the air grew cold, and there was blood—"     "Oh, very good." Jaime laughed. "Your wits are quicker than mine, I confess it. When they found me standing over my dead king, I never thought to say, 'No, no, it wasn't me, it was a shadow, a terrible cold shadow.'"/

 

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2 hours ago, Clegane'sPup said:

No, I don't think WF is the heart of summer because it is mentioned more than once in the saga and the extra material that the Starks of Winterfell are the kings of winter not summer.

The World of Ice and Fire - The North     The vast and frigid realm of the Kings of Winter, the Starks of Winterfell, is generally considered the first and oldest of the Seven Kingdoms, in that it has endured, unconquered, for the longest. The vagaries of geography and history set the North apart from their southron neighbors./

Did you read my post?  Kings of Winter guarding against summer is the gist.   If you're going to rebut with simplistic quotes that everyone knows, at least read the post first.

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