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Maia

New information in FaB and it's implications for the novels/novellas

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I have to admit that my read/listen has been going a little slower than I had planned- life and all.

A few things that are really striking out to me are the many more roles for women in the series, and no, not just Alysanne and her two laws and women's council, but women in general taking on roles we never really had before. (Thank you, Parris?)

GRRM giving his fave Targ king many traditional "Starkish" qualities in a few key areas of development (certainly not all, just a few ket areas). 

Alysanne and Nightfort is just as foreboding as I assumed before F&B. I cannot wait to read more about this in TWOW. 

Jocelyn and Aemon... yes, for so many reasons in the current story.

Sun Chaser... yes, for so many reasons in the current story.

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1 hour ago, Free Northman Reborn said:

Later, or perhaps earlier, ( I get confused as the Targ history all seems to blur into one endless Aenys(hehe), Aegor, Aemon, Daemon, Rhaenys, Vaegon, Aemond, Maegon etc), another Targ runs off and marries his sister or some other inappropriate person in front of a lowly septon, and that too is deemed legitimate.

Alysanne and Jaehaerys? I thought there were echoes from their story in the present one. There are interesting implications in the way they went about marrying the first time. And the Rogar Baratheon certainly looms large over them.

I thought the book helped put a lot of things into perspective. Lyanna and Arya were described as wild and willful, it doesn't even seem like the strangest thing in the world at all when we find out more about Alyssa for instance, her preferring swords and pants to sewing and dresses and seems to idolize Baelon especially. And there doesn't even seem to be anything all that wrong when she upends the wine over her brother's head because he was being an ass. 

We also have a Stark girl sent south to the king's court to attend the queen. There could be something here.

And women used to don mail, lead troops, go into battle. Melony Piper, Alys Blackwood, What's her face Frey, Ellyn Caron the two Rhaenys and Visenya, Jonquil Darke who became Alysanne's sworn shield, Alaric shows pride in what his wife did when she was 12 years old. Cregan seems besotted by Alys because she is different.

I'd like to understand what changed between then and now. Brienne is at the receiving end of scorn and Arya gets scorned by her sister and mother for not being a proper lady or Lyanna being forbidden to carry a sword and having to hide to practice with Benjen or Cersei dressing in her brother's clothes to get sword lessons. 

The more female names that were dropped about what this one did and that one did, the more I've been wondering.

Edited by Alexis-something-Rose

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There's really no shortage of Targaryens running off and marrying without the knowledge or permission of the king, regent, or the Faith.

In 39 AC, Prince Maegor was wed to Alys Harroway in a Valyrian ceremony without the knowledge or permission of King Aenys I.

In 41 AC, Prince Aegon was wed to his sister Princess Rhaena by Septon Murmison, the Hand of King Aenys I, without the permission of the High Septon.

In 49 AC, King Jaehaerys I was wed to his sister Princess Alysanne by Septon Oswyck without the knowledge or permission of Queen Regent Alyssa and Lord Protector Rogar Baratheon.

In 115 AC, Prince Daemon was wed to Laena Velaryon without the knowledge or permission of King Viserys I.

In 120 AC, Prince Daemon was wed to his niece Princess Rhaenyra without the knowledge or permission of King Viserys I.

In 239 AC, Prince Duncan was wed to the commoner Jenny of Oldstones without the knowledge or permission of King Aegon V, and against the opposition of the King, High Septon, and Grand Maester.

In 240 AC, Prince Jaehaerys (II) was wed to his sister Shaera without the knowledge or permission of King Aegon V.

Who knows how many more examples there will be in the period covered by Fire and Blood II.

Whatever the case, with all these examples, and with the Targaryen Exceptionalism that gave birth to kings such as Viserys I, Daeron II, Aerys II, and Prince Rhaegar himself, along with the many other examples of unions forbidden to all except the Targaryens, we have plenty of reason to believe that Rhaegar could have wed and consummated with Lyanna.

After the fact there might have been consequences or opposition politically or religiously, but there is nothing that rules out the possibility of Rhaegar wedding Lyanna while he was already wed, or his child with her being anything short of a legitimate child of a union sealed before the gods.

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The polygamy issue is and always was never about 'permission' - regardless whether from the king or the Faith (nobody asks the Faith for permission, anyway). Nobody doubts that marriages made without permission of the king/father are seen as viable and binding.

The issue is whether bigamy or polygamy (or the offspring thereof, especially those from second or third, etc. wives) are seen as proper marriages and whether the children born from such unions are seen as legitimate or illegitimate.

One king could force Westeros to accept his sons from two wives - the Conqueror. But even he lived monogamous for 27 years, and only had his second son while he had only one wife left.

There was no Targaryen prince - nor any lord - able to repeat that feat. And Maegor's unions were all barren, so he didn't help to settle this issue. It is, however, quite clear that nobody in Westeros but the Harroways saw Alys Harroway as Prince Maegor's wife.

Lucamore the Lusty gives us an interesting case study in polygamy outside the royal sphere - here all three marriages are considered to be invalid and the children branded as bastards because Lucamore was a Kingsguard when marrying, meaning his marriage vows were null and void from the start. But had he not been a KG we can reasonably assume that the first marriage would have been seen as valid, whereas the other two would have been seen as invalid, and the children from such unions would be seen as bastards.

The question in relation to the whole Jon Snow thing is whether the Westerosi at large are as much into polygamy as some of the boarders here, in the sense that they would, without pressure from any side (without an Aegon the Conqueror or Maegor the Cruel and dragonfire bending them to their point of view) just arbitrarily just say - after they hear the back story of Rhaegar and Lyanna and believe it for some reason - that this Jon Snow fellow has been born in wedlock and that Rhaegar's second marriage was as valid as anybody's marriage.

I mean, honestly, who in a strictly monogamous society would realistically think like that?

Maegor took a second wife as prince and then had the time and opportunity to force his people to accept Alys and his other wives as queens after he had usurped the throne.

And citing Maegor as a precedent seems to be very problematic, anyway, considering it is quite clear that he is seen as usurper, not as a true king. Jaehaerys did not overturn all his decrees and laws, but it quite clear that they do not count him as a rightful king, either. In that sense it is highly problematic to say that his wives were 'accepted' as his lawful queens when even his status as king is not really accepted.

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As we learn from Catelyn's POV:

Bastards were common enough, but incest was a monstrous sin to both old gods and new, and the children of such wickedness were named abominations in sept and godswood alike. The dragon kings had wed brother to sister, but they were the blood of old Valyria where such practices had been common, and like their dragons the Targaryens answered to neither gods nor men.

Incest is considered to be a monstrous sin to both old gods and new, yet even before the explicit agreement of Targaryen exceptionalism it produced legitimate children, and with Targaryen exceptionalism it continued well after the death of the last dragon.

Incestuous Unions:

- Aegon I + Visenya (1st century BC)
- Aegon I + Rhaenys (1st century BC)
- Aegon + Rhaena (1st century AC)
- Jaehaerys I + Alysanne (1st century AC)
- Baelon + Alyssa (1st century AC)
- Rhaenyra + Daemon (2nd century AC, though this may not be considered incest by the Faith)
- Aegon II + Helaena (2nd century AC)
- Aegon III + Jaehaera (2nd century AC)
- Aegon (IV) + Naerys (2nd century AC)
- Baelor (I) + Daena (2nd century AC)
- Aelor + Aelora (3rd century AC)
- Jaehaerys (II) + Shaera (3rd century AC)
- Aerys (II) + Rhaella (3rd century AC)

Born to Incestuous Unions:

Aegon I + Rhaenys
- Aenys (I)

Aegon I + Visenya
- Maegor (I)

Aegon + Rhaena
- Aerea
- Rhaella

Jaehaerys I + Alysanne
- Daenerys
- Aemon
- Baelon
- Alyssa
- Daella
- Viserra

Baelon + Alyssa
- Viserys (I)
- Daemon

Aegon (III) + Helaena
- Jaehaerys
- Jaehaera
- Maelor

Daemon + Rhaenyra
- Aegon (III) - can't recall if the Faith considered uncle/niece incest
- Viserys (II) - can't recall if the Faith considered uncle/niece incest

Aegon (IV) + Naerys
- Daeron (II)
- Daenerys

Jaehaerys (II) + Shaera
- Aerys (II)
- Rhaella

Aerys (II) + Rhaella
- Rhaegar
- Viserys
- Daenerys

Not to mention the incestuous betrothals that, for different reasons, did not materialize.

Polygamy is considered a sin by the Faith, but there is no indication it is considered a sin by the old gods. And even the worshipers of the new gods were happy to offer themselves or their daughters or relatives up to Aegon I as either a third wife (while Rhaenys still lived) or a second (after Rhaenys died).

When Targaryen exceptionalism gave Targaryens a pass on the sin of incest, there is no reason to believe that it fell short of giving them a pass for the sin-to-some of polygamy.

The biggest issues with Targaryen polygamy, then, would not be religious, but political. The Faith could hardly assert that the child of a man who had wed a second wife while he was already wed to a first was illegitimate on religious grounds, when the man who wed both wives was himself the result of two generations of brother-sister incest.

So it would be a matter of political fallout, not religious.

Edited by Bael's Bastard

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23 minutes ago, Alexis-something-Rose said:

"The hellhorns of Valyrian legend, bringing death and destruction down on all those who heard their sound."

I have so much more expectations toward Euron's horn now. 

I guess you don't see Victarion becoming a dragonrider, either ;-).

The old gods' view on polygamy and incest both is pretty much irrelevant. They don't have a priest caste, nor is this actually a proper 'organized religion'. Culturally, incest is also shunned by the First Men, but there are no sacred texts or mortal mouthpieces telling us the will of the 'old gods'.

For what it's worth, though, the sources tell us that the Faith only condemns parent-child and sibling incest. Avuncular marriages seem to be fine - and they definitely are fine for the Starks. That the High Septon objected to the Maegor-Rhaena match seems to more dissuade the Targaryens from their normal incestuous matches than because such matches are actually explicitly forbidden by the Faith.

The problem with Rhaegar's second marriage is that he actually married Elia Martell in a sept. So whatever the view of the old gods were on polygamy - it is irrelevant for the followers of the Seven because he already entered into a marriage in a sept, conducted by the High Septon himself, which is supposed to be monogamous.

The status of an alleged hidden prince born in a (possibly) secret marriage is not as, well, clear as the status of a prince born to a king who had the power to force his people to turn a blind eye to the fact that he had married both his sisters.

Just as Rhaenyra Targaryen legitimizing Addam and Alyn of Hull didn't exactly cause House Velaryon to accept 'Alyn Velaryon' as rightful heir of Driftmark, nor as a suitable spouse for Lady Baela Targaryen.

The people hearing about the Jon Snow story can have multiple reasons for not liking it - and one of those might be the fact that he would be Rhaegar's son from a wife who wasn't Elia Martell.

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21 hours ago, Lord Varys said:

We do not discuss here what we'll think will happen. We discuss whether what we learned about winter in FaB makes Jon's decisions in ADwD appear to be wise or imply that he actually knows what winter means at the Wall and did his best to prepare his men for that. And the answer to that simply is 'no'.

Even if we ignore that the entire thing got him killed - chances are not that likely that everything is suddenly going to turn out for the better in a book that's supposed to go to very dark places - and that at a place where the 'winter' from the title is going to be fest the worst.

The men at the Watch will not be able to eat parchment nor gold.

Really weird how people want to ignore the question asked in the OP and apparent reason the thread was brought about. 

Does Fab reflect on Jon’s decisions? Were Jon’s decisions right. Meh. A little yes and a little no.  I’m surprised that people seem to disgruntled/surprised at people discussing Lord Commander Jon’s actions 

In another thread you’ve stated you thought shivers was a tool by the others to kill the Targs. 

Interesting theory.

I wonder if the rats Jon thinks will likely need to be used as food(apparently he doesn’t think the line of credit would fix the food shortage completely-still helped out a lot),  will be the tools the others use to spread some magical diseases. 

Edited by Varysblackfyre321

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14 minutes ago, Varysblackfyre321 said:

I wonder if the rats Jon thinks will likely need to be used as food(apparently he doesn’t think the line of credit would fix the food shortage completely-still helped out a lot),  will be the tools the others use to spread some magical diseases. 

I actually don't think the rat hypothesis the people in Westeros have for the spreading of the diseases account to much. I think that was a nod to this classical horror movie: https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Nosferatu where rats from ships also spread the plague (which is a common theme, anyway, and also connected to the real transfer of the plague via the fleas on the rats).

I'm not sure how the Others would spread a sickness south of the Wall, nor whether they would actually need a carrier, but I think they should be able to make something like that happen.

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11 hours ago, The Fattest Leech said:

I have to admit that my read/listen has been going a little slower than I had planned- life and all.

A few things that are really striking out to me are the many more roles for women in the series, and no, not just Alysanne and her two laws and women's council, but women in general taking on roles we never really had before. (Thank you, Parris?)

GRRM giving his fave Targ king many traditional "Starkish" qualities in a few key areas of development (certainly not all, just a few ket areas). 

Alysanne and Nightfort is just as foreboding as I assumed before F&B. I cannot wait to read more about this in TWOW. 

Jocelyn and Aemon... yes, for so many reasons in the current story.

Sun Chaser... yes, for so many reasons in the current story.

One small Easter egg that someone else caught was that Jaehaerys and GRRM have the same birthday as well, September 20th. 

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35 minutes ago, The Bard of Banefort said:

One small Easter egg that someone else caught was that Jaehaerys and GRRM have the same birthday as well, September 20th. 

Nice! This is very cool. What a tricksy bird Martin is ^_^

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"When the hammer shall fall upon the dragon, a new king shall arise, and none shall stand before him.”

This particular prophesy was told about Hugh th Hammer, yet we do have such an instance in the main series where this occurred both figuratively and literally, Robert's hammer fell on the ruby dragon on Rhaegar's breastplate. Robert ascended more of less uncontested after that.

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3 hours ago, The Sleeper said:

"When the hammer shall fall upon the dragon, a new king shall arise, and none shall stand before him.”

This particular prophesy was told about Hugh th Hammer, yet we do have such an instance in the main series where this occurred both figuratively and literally, Robert's hammer fell on the ruby dragon on Rhaegar's breastplate. Robert ascended more of less uncontested after that.

Yeah, that's evocative of Robert ... although I'm not sure if nobody could stand before him. Quite a few people actually fooled him, and the fat guy wasn't exactly a great warrior anymore. And then there was this boar ... granted, he killed it, but...

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3 hours ago, The Sleeper said:

"When the hammer shall fall upon the dragon, a new king shall arise, and none shall stand before him.”

This particular prophesy was told about Hugh th Hammer, yet we do have such an instance in the main series where this occurred both figuratively and literally, Robert's hammer fell on the ruby dragon on Rhaegar's breastplate. Robert ascended more of less uncontested after that.

This was "oh" moment for me when I read this and realized the ramifications of it. It's pretty intense.

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4 hours ago, The Sleeper said:

"When the hammer shall fall upon the dragon, a new king shall arise, and none shall stand before him.”

I really hope that this was something that Hugh came up with to justify his power grab and which then ironically came true with Robert, rather than a true prophecy. If all important events a foreordained so far in advance, then the characters have no agency and don't deserve their successes and failures. Maggi the Frog foretelling is already far too specific for my comfort and I very much hope that some parts of it won't come true. But a very nice Easter Egg indeed.

Anyway, moving on:

I was most interested with the will and succession of Maid of the Vale. It seems that with cousins as heirs, proximity is not particularly binding. It is particularly intriguing given sudden appearance of sons of Artos the Implacable on the Strark genealogical tree in WoIaF, with helpful note of both having had issue. Their descendants would be almost - or depending on how generations went for them, as closely related to Robb as the Vale cousins, but through the male line originated by an illustrous ancestor and, if the line was unbroken, having the "magical" Stark surname from the get-go. They would also be northmen - so that Robb's objections to the Vale cousins wouldn't apply. There is a bit of a mystery as to why they weren't mentioned or appeared previously, but then, there are by now plenty of examples of  obscure cousins inheriting - so could this be another option for Robb's will? Maybe Cat's suggestion of Vale cousins and consultation with other lords got him thinking in this direction.

Particularly since there were no examples in FaB of anybody even thinking that the Night's Watch oath is revocable - on the contrary, in the case of Grandmaester Orwyle, the promise of joining was already considered binding, even by his former Green colleagues and his attempts to avoid fulfilling it are seen as dishonorable and eventually meriting an execution.

As I said before, with the Pact of Ice and Fire being changed from Rhaena being promised to Cregan as a wife to Jace promising his own future daughter as a wife to Cregan's heir Rickon, I am convinced that there is going to be another failed "pact of Ice and Fire" in the persons of the Young Dragon and either Cregan's daughter by Black Aly or one of Rickon's daughters. Though, likely not Sansa (I) - this would be too on the nose, but Serena, who ended up marrying her uncle Edric. We know that Cregan met and sparred with the Dragonknight and that his heir Rickon fought and died for the Young Dragon in Dorne - this would explain the otherwise odd Stark involvement in this enterprise. And, of course, it would make Jon the result of a _third_ attempt on that score, just as Dany is now the third Targaryen daughter of that name.

Also, if Dany ever gets to Volantys, she very well may encounter descendants of Saera there - in fact they may be specifically sent to treat with her, Hopefully, we will learn more about her colorful life then - is it too much to hope that it was mostly happy?

@Lord Varys:

I very much doubt that there is going to be another dragon battle - because the Dance _of the Dragons_ wouldn't be at an end, if so.  Given Marwin's allegiations I expect the rest of the dragons to die in such a way that poisoning could be suspected. Also, so far it doesn't seem like Dragonsbane's reign is going to be particularly notable for grand events like that. There are going to be rebellions, sure, but the era of dragon warfare is past, IMHO.  As to the Dark Sister, isn't it mentioned in FaB that it would be recovered many years later? It wouldn't surprise me if the Dragonknight is going to be the one to do it.

 

19 hours ago, Bael's Bastard said:


Polygamy is considered a sin by the Faith, but there is no indication it is considered a sin by the old gods.

And yet, polygamy is illegal in the North among the old gods followers, sin or not, and has been for a long time.

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13 minutes ago, Maia said:

I very much doubt that there is going to be another dragon battle - because the Dance _of the Dragons_ wouldn't be at an end, if so. 

 

The fake Daerons also don't call as part of the Dance, never mind that this whole thing is still a continuation of the Dance since Daeron the Daring has a better claim than Aegon III and that all goes back to the previous war. And another dragon battle involving dragonriders could make Aegon III even more fearful of dragons. Imagine the effects if Rhaena and Morning or Baela on another dragon or both get devoured by whatever dragon Aemond's son rides?

13 minutes ago, Maia said:

Given Marwin's allegiations I expect the rest of the dragons to die in such a way that poisoning could be suspected. Also, so far it doesn't seem like Dragonsbane's reign is going to be particularly notable for grand events like that. There are going to be rebellions, sure, but the era of dragon warfare is past, IMHO.  As to the Dark Sister, isn't it mentioned in FaB that it would be recovered many years later? It wouldn't surprise me if the Dragonknight is going to be the one to do it.

We have just Marwyn's word for it. And we still don't know how many twisted and crippled and monstrous (like Laena's) dragons are going to hatch during the reign of the Dragonbane. The chances that the Cannibal and Silverwing and even Morning are going to get poisoned doesn't look very likely to me. At this point Morning is healthy and well.

And overall, wild/riderless dragons don't have to be poisoned, anyway. They could be killed by dragonslayers. The whole rumors about Aegon III poisoning dragons - which, I think, got a huge boost in credibility by the way Aegon reacted to Morning's presence in FaB - always indicated Targaryen dragons at court or on Dragonstone suffered mysterious, strange deaths.

I'm reasonably confident that Aegon III actually preferred a dragonless world to a world where he had to deal with those beasts, never mind that it reduced Targaryen power. Perhaps he repented afterwards, and allowed Viserys to experiment, perhaps he just feigned acceptance to throw his brother a bone.

It something is made with Alys' son and he ends up properly challenging Aegon III this has to happen when the boy is old enough - meaning the later 140s or around 150 AC. By that time many years would have passed. Dark Sister cannot actually have been recovered from the lake bottom of the Gods Eye (they cannot really dive in this world), so it stands to reason that the rotting corpse of Vhagar (or parts thereof) eventually rose from the bottom and/or washed up at the shore, along with Aemond's corpse.

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17 minutes ago, Maia said:

I really hope that this was something that Hugh came up with to justify his power grab and which then ironically came true with Robert, rather than a true prophecy. If all important events a foreordained so far in advance, then the characters have no agency and don't deserve their successes and failures. Maggi the Frog foretelling is already far too specific for my comfort and I very much hope that some parts of it won't come true. But a very nice Easter Egg indeed.

I think Martin uses prophecy more as a literary device than plot device, but either way I agree this is an Easter egg and meant to be no more than that. 

 

21 minutes ago, Maia said:

Also, if Dany ever gets to Volantys, she very well may encounter descendants of Saera there - in fact they may be specifically sent to treat with her, Hopefully, we will learn more about her colorful life then - is it too much to hope that it was mostly happy?

@Lord Varys

Either that or Lys. Maybe some suitor would present himself to Dany claiming descent from Saera. It is implied that she came to thrive. I am not sure if that necessarily meant happiness. I got two impressions from Saera. That she was capable enough not to simply fade away under any circumstances and that much of what she did up to and including becoming a prostitute in Lys and particularly her gimmick was meant as a middle finger to her father. 

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26 minutes ago, Maia said:

And yet, polygamy is illegal in the North among the old gods followers, sin or not, and has been for a long time.

Is it? I don't recall any indication that it is illegal in the North. But regardless, even before Targaryen exceptionalism, strong followers of the Faith like the Hightowers and Arryns, as well as King Durrandon, freely offered up their own as an additional wife to Aegon. What is a prohibited sin to the realm is not a prohibited sin to the Targaryens.

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