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Wolfkin

Robin Arryn's fostering

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What is the significance of WHO fosters Robin Arryn? Or why does GRRM keep bringing this subject up in the story?
Cat/Ned believe he is to be fostered at Casterly Rock, and are surprised to learn he is to be fostered at Dragonstone instead.
This is brought up a few times, and I guess I just haven't figured out why it matters so much, other than the fosterlings seem to grow attached and more loyal to the foster family.
Stannis said that Jon asked him to foster the boy. The Lannisters are under the impression that they would foster him.
Lysa is just so crazed that she would not agree to anyone fostering her child. Probably not even Eddard if he had been asked.
I can see where the Lannisters would use him more as a hostage for controlling the Vale's actions in future events -which I am sure Jon Arryn would have thought of as well, when he asked Stannis to take Robin.  So does GRRM keep bringing this up to point out that Jon Arryn has absolutely no  trust in the Lannisters? Or because he has come to the same conclusion as Ned; the Baratheon children are NOT Baratheon blood.

And why haven't any of the Stark children been fostered out?

It's just something that has bugged me, and I as wondering what your thoughts may be. Thanks for your input!

Edited by Wolfkin

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It's significant mainly because Jon's decision to send his son to foster away with Stannis is one of the reasons that lead Lysa to murder him, in order to prevent him from taking Robert away from her.

But it also give us, early on, a good picture of the alliances and personalities of the characters involved:

  • it shows that Jon trusts Stannis, as he wanted to send him his only son and heir.
  • it shows that Jon held things from Robert, as he didn't told him of his decision to send the boy to Stannis.
  • it shows that Robert doesn't trust his brothers, as he thinks of sending the boy to Tywin instead of Stannis (who had a daughter of age) or to Renly (who has a ward of age).
  • it show that Robert is really dumb and carelessly dependent of the Lannisters, as he would deliver to an unreliable ally the child lord of the Vale.

 

2 hours ago, Wolfkin said:

And why haven't any of the Stark children been fostered out?

I guess Ned had an overall bad experience in his fostering at the Vale. He doesn't verbalize it, he sees Jon as a father figure and Robert as a friend, but I'm sure he felt out of place and missed his family. And when Rickard, Brandon and Lyanna had an early dead, surely he wished he could have spent more time with them.

Another additional explanation is that since he couldn't send Jon away (because of some promise to Lyanna), he didn't even dare to propose sending any of the trueborn kids away. It would be a real offense to Cat, and it could rise suspicions.

Edited by The hairy bear

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1 hour ago, The hairy bear said:

Another additional explanation is that since he couldn't send Jon away (because of some promise to Lyanna), he didn't even dare to propose sending any of the trueborn kids away. It would be a real offense to Cat, and it could rise suspicions.

Ah yes! I hadn't even considered this! This makes a lot of sense. 

But then, he doesn't hesitate to let Jon head to The Wall and join the Night's Watch. Maybe Ned just has to keep him out of the southern regions? I'm going to have to go back through the part of Robert entering Winterfell, and see if Robert/Jon were actually introduced.  Is Ned to keep Jon from Robert? Or keep Jon from heading south?  Or... it just raises more questions!! LOL

I'm thinking the whole question of Robin's fostering, is pretty much what I had concluded as well. The fact that GRRM kept repeating it throughout the first book, just kept bugging me. Reminds me of the many times he reminded us ' there must always be a Stark at Winterfell'. I think we are suppose to take notice of those phrases he continuously repeats. 

Thank you for your thoughts, the hairy bear. I appreciated your input!

Edited by Wolfkin

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5 hours ago, Wolfkin said:

What is the significance of WHO fosters Robin Arryn? Or why does GRRM keep bringing this subject up in the story?
Cat/Ned believe he is to be fostered at Casterly Rock, and are surprised to learn he is to be fostered at Dragonstone instead.
This is brought up a few times, and I guess I just haven't figured out why it matters so much, other than the fosterlings seem to grow attached and more loyal to the foster family.
Stannis said that Jon asked him to foster the boy. The Lannisters are under the impression that they would foster him.
Lysa is just so crazed that she would not agree to anyone fostering her child. Probably not even Eddard if he had been asked.
I can see where the Lannisters would use him more as a hostage for controlling the Vale's actions in future events -which I am sure Jon Arryn would have thought of as well, when he asked Stannis to take Robin.  So does GRRM keep bringing this up to point out that Jon Arryn has absolutely no  trust in the Lannisters? Or because he has come to the same conclusion as Ned; the Baratheon children are NOT Baratheon blood.

And why haven't any of the Stark children been fostered out?

It's just something that has bugged me, and I as wondering what your thoughts may be. Thanks for your input!

It is significant because it ties into the true paternity of Cersei's children, and the true murderer of Jon Arryn. In each case we are led to believe on things, and the truth is only gradually revealed to be otherwise.

We are first introduced to the idea that Robert Arryn was originally supposed to foster with Tywin Lannister from King Robert Baratheon in AGOT: Eddard I, the fourth chapter of the first book, and it is only gradually revealed that Jon Arryn himself had actually intended to foster Robert with Stannis Baratheon on Dragonstone.

Bran then overhears Cersei tell Jaime that Lysa Arryn fled after they had already agreed to foster Robert at Casterlyn Rock in AGOT: Bran II, the eighth chapter in AGOT.

Eddard then hears the rumor that Jon Arryn had planned to send the boy to Dragonstone is first mentioned in AGOT: Eddard VI, the twenty-seventh chapter of AGOT.

Catelyn then hears from Jon Arryn's own maester Colemon that Jon had planned to send Robert to foster on Dragonstone in AGOT: Catelyn VII, the fortieth chapter of AGOT.

Catelyn then hears from Walder Frey that Jon Arryn had told him that he planned to send Robert to foster on Dragonstone with Stannis, which caused Lysa Arryn to storm off, in AGOT: Catelyn IX, the fifty-ninth chapter of AGOT.

Stannis then confirms that Jon Arryn had asked him to foster Robert on Dragonstone in the Prologue of ACOK.

Pycelle then confirms that he knew before Jon Arryn's death that he had planned to send Robert to foster on Dragonstone in ACOK: Tyrion VI, the twenty-fifth chapter of ACOK.

Lysa then confirms that Jon Arryn had planned to send Robert to Dragonstone before his death, and confirms that King Robert planned to "give him to Cersei Lannister," indicating that Robert and Cersei conceived the idea to foster Robert with Tywin after Jon Arryn's death. Lysa confirms that she murdered Jon Arryn to prevent Robert being taken away from her.

The true paternity of Cersei's children similarly unfolds over the course of AGOT as Ned is investigating the murder of Jon Arryn.

It also also eventually revealed that Stannis had brought his own suspicions about the true paternity of Cersei's children to Jon Arryn, which is what set Jon on his investigation of the paternity of Cersei's children, and which explains how Jon and Stannis came to be connected to the extent that Jon would plan to foster Robert with Stannis.

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Thank you, Bael. This pretty much confirms that my conclusion was not far off. It's good to feel as though I am getting the gist of things. I do try and keep track of the events, but I am no where near as good as many are. How in the heck to do you recall which chapters hold all the answers? I take notes along the way, but I sure can't tell you which chapter holds this answer or that answer. Apparently, I better take better notes! Thanks again for your input!

Edited by Wolfkin

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As to your OP I'd say the replys above

pretty much nailed it.

I find this is be as if not more interesting...

7 hours ago, Wolfkin said:

Ah yes! I hadn't even considered this! This makes a lot of sense. 

But then, he doesn't hesitate to let Jon head to The Wall and join the Night's Watch. Maybe Ned just has to keep him out of the southern regions? I'm going to have to go back through the part of Robert entering Winterfell, and see if Robert/Jon were actually introduced.  Is Ned to keep Jon from Robert? Or keep Jon from heading south?  Or... it just raises more questions!! LOL

I'm thinking the whole question of Robin's fostering, is pretty much what I had concluded as well. The fact that GRRM kept repeating it throughout the first book, just kept bugging me. Reminds me of the many times he reminded us ' there must always be a Stark at Winterfell'. I think we are suppose to take notice of those phrases he continuously repeats. 

Thank you for your thoughts, the hairy bear. I appreciated your input!

Why didn't Ned foster out any of his children(and six kids, that all survive infancy is kinda a lot compared to other house we know excluding Freys)? Why were none of them betrothed(or even married)? Rob and sansa are old enough at least.

Cat?

Jon?

Not wanting to repeat his father and brothers mistakes?

And Jon is kept purposefully out of the way during the royal visit, he never directly speaks to Robert that we see. In his POV Jon thinks this is because of Cat not wanting to offend Cersi with his presence.

Perhaps he just looks too much like his mother haha

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On 1/17/2019 at 5:35 AM, Back door hodor said:

 

Perhaps he just looks too much like his mother haha

Good catch i never thought of that!

Jon was an old man, so he needed to take care that somebody of importance and power took his son in and Stannis he trusted since they were close in KL and even visited Roberts bastard together. Robin is the protector of the Vale and warden of the East and very important. Giving him over to a Lannister would been stupid and the Tyrells and the Martells were not long ago a big enemy of king Robert and the Arryns. So i see no other option, while the vale was allready connected with the Starks en the Tullys. Only a minor house in the vale was possible, but still, than that house got his hands on the only heir of the Vale and good have rison in power and corruption.

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I think Jon Arryn wanted to foster Robin out so he could get him away from his mother.  Obviously, he needed to grow up and with John Arryn too busy running Westeros, he didn't have time to raise his son. 

It is entirely possible that Robert did not know of Jon's plans before he died, so Cersie's suggestion that Robin be sent to the Rock seemed OK with Rob.

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On 1/16/2019 at 11:35 PM, Back door hodor said:

Why didn't Ned foster out any of his children(and six kids, that all survive infancy is kinda a lot compared to other house we know excluding Freys)? Why were none of them betrothed(or even married)? Rob and sansa are old enough at least.

I always wondered the opposite, why was Ned fostered with Jon Arryn?  The Starks had the means to support and train their own.  The best answer is that the fostering was a political move meant to unite houses, similar to arranged marriages.

Therefore, the answer to both these questions  may be the same, Ned did not want to play politics with his kids.  He wants them to have the freedom to go where they want, love who they want and marry when and who they want.  This may have been a direct result of Ned knowing the truth of the theory that Lyanna ran away with Rhaeger instead of marrying Robert.

And with the exception of Robb, the kids were young.

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On 1/16/2019 at 2:15 PM, The hairy bear said:

It's significant mainly because Jon's decision to send his son to foster away with Stannis is one of the reasons that lead Lysa to murder him, in order to prevent him from taking Robert away from her.

But it also give us, early on, a good picture of the alliances and personalities of the characters involved:

  • it shows that Jon trusts Stannis, as he wanted to send him his only son and heir.
  • it shows that Jon held things from Robert, as he didn't told him of his decision to send the boy to Stannis.
  • it shows that Robert doesn't trust his brothers, as he thinks of sending the boy to Tywin instead of Stannis (who had a daughter of age) or to Renly (who has a ward of age).
  • it show that Robert is really dumb and carelessly dependent of the Lannisters, as he would deliver to an unreliable ally the child lord of the Vale.

 

I guess Ned had an overall bad experience in his fostering at the Vale. He doesn't verbalize it, he sees Jon as a father figure and Robert as a friend, but I'm sure he felt out of place and missed his family. And when Rickard, Brandon and Lyanna had an early dead, surely he wished he could have spent more time with them.

Another additional explanation is that since he couldn't send Jon away (because of some promise to Lyanna), he didn't even dare to propose sending any of the trueborn kids away. It would be a real offense to Cat, and it could rise suspicions.

He could have had Jon foster with Howland Reed, who is the only other person who knows who Jon is. Who would look for a Targaryen in the neck. Besides, Catelyn was eager to kick Jon out of the house at the earliest opportunity. 

Is Ned any different than Lysa Arryn for wanting his kids close by? 

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On 1/22/2019 at 1:53 PM, Chris Mormont said:

I always wondered the opposite, why was Ned fostered with Jon Arryn?  The Starks had the means to support and train their own.  The best answer is that the fostering was a political move meant to unite houses, similar to arranged marriages.

Therefore, the answer to both these questions  may be the same, Ned did not want to play politics with his kids.  He wants them to have the freedom to go where they want, love who they want and marry when and who they want.  This may have been a direct result of Ned knowing the truth of the theory that Lyanna ran away with Rhaeger instead of marrying Robert.

And with the exception of Robb, the kids were young.

Betrothing Lyanna to Robert was a mistake. Married life with Robert seems to be psychologically unhealthy, if Cersei is any indication. 

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I thought it was part of the Baelish's whole scheme with Lysa that involved blaming the Lannisters for Jon Arryn's death. She made such a big deal about the Lannisters wanting to take her child when it turns out than he instead was going to be fostered with Stannis on Dragonstone. Have I remembered this wrong?

Edited by flaydagawd

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Another reason that Robert had agreed to foster his Hand's son out to the Lannisters would be that Cersei had p*-whipped him into it. We saw in a number of instances how she could bend King Robert to her will, just by being ... er, insistent. I'm not sure how long "Sweet"robin might have lasted at Casterly Rock; being a frail kid prone to seizures, it would be easy to explain a premature death. Nobody would really have been surprised. At best, little Robert would have been made into a Lannister sympathizer and maybe eventually married off to a Lannister, giving them control of the Vale, too.

I'm not sure how much Robert Baratheon "mistrusted" his younger sibs; I think more likely that he held them in contempt. Renly for his handsomeness, popularity, and sexual orientation; Stannis for his failure to be a drunken, dissipated womanizer like Robert himself. Neither would have met King Bob's definition of "manliness." Plus, Robert seemed to have a strong desire to humiliate and marginalize Stannis, once again recognizing that Stannis really was the better man. (Or I may be projecting...)

This, by the way, is a really enlightening discussion of the fostering, and how it relates to Jon Arryn's death, Lannister scheming, Ned Stark, etc. Thanks to all the participants!

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On ‎1‎/‎16‎/‎2019 at 8:32 AM, Wolfkin said:

And why haven't any of the Stark children been fostered out?

 

Who would run the castle? Maester Luwin, Rodrik Cassell and Old Nan can't do everything.

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18 hours ago, Three-Fingered Pete said:

 

Who would run the castle? Maester Luwin, Rodrik Cassell and Old Nan can't do everything.

Actually running castle is steward's job. So house Poole.

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The Stark children being fostered out has no bearing on the running of Winterfell. Ned would still be there unless/until he went off to be Hand, and then he would delegate his duties. Either to Luwin and Rodrik or, assuming she remains in WF, Catelyn (who would doubtless consult Luwin and Rodrik too). I mean The Eyrie didn't shut down and collapse because Jon Arryn went away to be Hand. Luwin and Rodrik (and Catelyn) would be perfectly capable of running WF without the Stark kids. I mean even in the main series, the kids don't run Winterfell. Bran gains some valuable experience sitting on their meetings etc. And Robb is given the final say so on important matters like approving a new navy, but really it's Luwin and Rodrik who run things, in addition to the various other persons who keep their respective areas running smooth. It's largely a delegation job anyway, and keeping check on those you delegate to, making sure they are doing a good job

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6 hours ago, Loose Bolt said:

Actually running castle is steward's job. So house Poole.

 

3 hours ago, HelenaExMachina said:

The Stark children being fostered out has no bearing on the running of Winterfell.

 

I'm pretty sure that you guys missed the joke. No matter, carry on.

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On 1/16/2019 at 2:15 PM, The hairy bear said:

It's significant mainly because Jon's decision to send his son to foster away with Stannis is one of the reasons that lead Lysa to murder him, in order to prevent him from taking Robert away from her.

But it also give us, early on, a good picture of the alliances and personalities of the characters involved:

  • it shows that Jon trusts Stannis, as he wanted to send him his only son and heir.
  • it shows that Jon held things from Robert, as he didn't told him of his decision to send the boy to Stannis.
  • it shows that Robert doesn't trust his brothers, as he thinks of sending the boy to Tywin instead of Stannis (who had a daughter of age) or to Renly (who has a ward of age).
  • it show that Robert is really dumb and carelessly dependent of the Lannisters, as he would deliver to an unreliable ally the child lord of the Vale.

 

I guess Ned had an overall bad experience in his fostering at the Vale. He doesn't verbalize it, he sees Jon as a father figure and Robert as a friend, but I'm sure he felt out of place and missed his family. And when Rickard, Brandon and Lyanna had an early dead, surely he wished he could have spent more time with them.

Another additional explanation is that since he couldn't send Jon away (because of some promise to Lyanna), he didn't even dare to propose sending any of the trueborn kids away. It would be a real offense to Cat, and it could rise suspicions.

So is Ned any better than Lysa for not wanting his kids fostered out?

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5 hours ago, Angel Eyes said:

So is Ned any better than Lysa for not wanting his kids fostered out?

The reason why is the rellevant factor here. Lysa doesn't want Robert fostered out because a sentiment of property and an insane overprotection. None of those is present in Ned.

Ned is a great parent (relatively, by his society's standards). Lysa is a terrible one.

 

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