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Why was Lyanna Stark willingly married to Rhaegar when he had not divorced Elia Martell?

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14 hours ago, Arthur Peres said:

if Lyanna went willing with Rhaegar she is a hypocrite. She chastise Robert for sleeping around and judge him on this alone, even though he wasn't cheatting or anything she calls out his potentional unfaithfulness, but at the same time went along with a married men father of 2. this is hypocrise.

Not if they marry. In that case, they are having perfectly legitimate marital sex and are not cheating on anyone.

14 hours ago, Arthur Peres said:

 

Plain and simple, being "willinfull" lady, rebel teenager, does not change it.

Rhaegar is a awful husband, or do you disagree?

Elia Martell always so frail gives him two kings risking her life in the process, was abandoned by him togheter with her kids to become a hostage of his crazy father, while he started this mess by eloping with a young girl and staying with her during most part of the rebellion, after public humiliating his Elia in the biggest tournament so far... Awful husband sounds a very kind of way do describe him, crazy delusional idiot with no concern for consequences of his actions also sounds accurate, but I do like to keep things simple. English is not my first language and some people get offended over nothing...

Oh, hindsight, hindsight. Did Rhaegar possess a crystal ball to know what his entanglement with Lyanna would lead to (not to mention that we don't even know what or how transpired), or that Aerys would summon Elia with children from Dragonstone? And when the shit hit the fan, did Rhaegar possess any means to convince Aerys to make peace with Ned and Robert?

14 hours ago, Arthur Peres said:

Well, when you judge their words and they actions sound's accurate too. Eddard never bad mouth Aerys either, and I doubt anyone would have anything kind to say about the mad king.

His assessment is that "the mad king did his last mad act". That's his opinion on Aerys - a madman. Why badmouth a madman? He is mad, and that's it. Compare it with Ned's thoughts on Tywin, who has no excuse of insanity.

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2 hours ago, Ygrain said:

Oh, hindsight, hindsight. Did Rhaegar possess a crystal ball to know what his entanglement with Lyanna would lead to (not to mention that we don't even know what or how transpired), or that Aerys would summon Elia with children from Dragonstone? And when the shit hit the fan, did Rhaegar possess any means to convince Aerys to make peace with Ned and Robert?

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It's not about hindsight. Eloping with Lyanna is one of the worst decisions in the series - the only one worst that I can think is Robb and Jeyne- Lyanna was daughter of a lord paramount promissed to another lord paramount, while Rhaegar himself is married to another paramount family.  He is pissing off in one strike 3 of the 8 most powerfull families in the realm. It's even worst when you go away for a long time and let your crazy father in charge.

Running away with lyanna is the equivalent of trying to cuckold a hellangel in his moto club. Does not take a genious to know that it will end very badly.

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3 hours ago, Ygrain said:

His assessment is that "the mad king did his last mad act". That's his opinion on Aerys - a madman. Why badmouth a madman? He is mad, and that's it. Compare it with Ned's thoughts on Tywin, who has no excuse of insanity.

Tywin is alive. Aerys is not. Mad or not this is the guy that burned his father and brother alive and then asked for his head... If he won't bad mounth him, I don't see him doing it with anyone.

Ned just moved on with his life, unlike Robert, he does not think about Rhaegar or Aerys much.

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4 hours ago, Ygrain said:

Not if they marry. In that case, they are having perfectly legitimate marital sex and are not cheating on anyone.

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Meh, I think it depends. I see most of the south(especially Dorne-I imagine they'd be outraged at the shame that has been inflicted on Elllia by house Targyen)not recognizing the marriage as anymore than Maegor's second was. I think the north generally would agree.  I definitely see Ellia feeling cheated on regardless of Rheagar saying he married Lyanna before he plowed Lyanna. Really a lack of empathy on Lyanna’s part. Truth be told I think Ellia would see Rheagar’s action to be a worse form of cheating than simply going to a whorehouse or taking on a mistress. 

 

4 hours ago, Ygrain said:

Oh, hindsight, hindsight. Did Rhaegar possess a crystal ball to know what his entanglement with Lyanna would lead to (not to mention that we don't even know what or how transpired), or that Aerys would summon Elia with children from Dragonstone? And when the shit hit the fan, did Rhaegar possess any means to convince Aerys to make peace with Ned and Robert?

I mean it's not really hard to see  his actions leading to a chain of events where a lot of people die. I mean Robert could've easily been the one to go to KL to demand restitution for Lyanna being stolen from him. Someone important bothering Aerys about this incident was a real possibilty. And Aerys could be reasonably guessed to kill the person who raised the issue by anyone who knew him.

Edited by Varysblackfyre321

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22 hours ago, Arthur Peres said:

if Lyanna went willing with Rhaegar she is a hypocrite. She chastise Robert for sleeping around and judge him on this alone, even though he wasn't cheatting or anything she calls out his potentional unfaithfulness, but at the same time went along with a married men father of 2. this is hypocrise. Plain and simple, being "willinfull" lady, rebel teenager, does not change it.

Neither plain, nor simple. Nor accurate.

She criticised Robert for his character, that he would never be faithful. She was right.

Rhaegar however is shown in his actions and the words of all who knew him (other than Robert) to have a very different character. Dutiful above all, I think it was Barristan said.  He married the woman his father ordered him to, treated her well, with fondness, even though there was no love there. He is shown in Dany's vision with Elia at (or soon after ) Aegon's birth, being a good husband and father. His daughter was found hiding under his bed when she was murdered, indicating a good father. Obviously he had flaws, but I think the signs are there that he took his husbandly and fatherly duties as seriously as his others, making him a far better father than most we see in the series.  
I believe the QoLaB thing was almost entirely about the KotLT, and think it likely that Elia was in on it. It doesn't fit with Rhaegar's character as shown elsewhere to have sprung it on her as a surprise. But we don't know that. Either way, we see no hint of any unhappiness on her part or split between them at that stage.
Its only after Aegon's birth, when the maesters declare that she cannot risk another pregnancy, that things change. It is clear from his words then, and from other indications, that he is wrestling with yet another, perhaps even greater responsibility. The Prince that was Promised, prophesy, the War for the Dawn, the dragon has three heads, "there must be one more". And those on top of his Crown Prince duties, and Mad King father...
Consequently, he needed another woman to create the third head of the dragon to support Aegon. Duty, above all. Aegon's song is the Song of Ice and Fire. He'd also likely know (being very well read and a student of history and legend) of the unconsummated Pact of Ice and Fire between the Targaryens and the Starks.
He is not 'abandoning' Elia or their kids. Aegon is the Prince that was Promised, and Rhaenys likey the second head, with a third child being the third head. Elia and the kids are left in safety in Dragonstone. She is still his wife, still will be Queen when he is King, still the mother of the future King. But, like Visenya, she will have to accept a second wife. Assuming they ever slept together for more than duty in the first place, she's likely unable to sleep with him again for fear of pregnancy, and there's a decent chance she's good with that given it was always a political marriage rather than a love match, and she has two kids already.

So, Rhaegar has given every indication of faithfuless to Elia so far. But that part of their relationship has ended due to her health. He is now free to continue being faithful, but to Lyanna instead.

There is no hypocrisy here on her part once you dig into it.
Or perhaps it was as simple as you suggest and there was hypocrisy. People lie to themselves and break their own standards frequently. She's human, just like the rest of us. 

22 hours ago, Arthur Peres said:

Rhaegar is a awful husband, or do you disagree?

I think the evidence diagrees.

22 hours ago, Arthur Peres said:

Elia Martell always so frail gives him two kings risking her life in the process, was abandoned by him togheter with her kids to become a hostage of his crazy father,

He didn't abandon her, or their kids. The were safe in Dragonstone. The King ordered them to KL, and even if Rhaegar was there, he could have done nothing about it.

22 hours ago, Arthur Peres said:

while he started this mess by eloping with a young girl

It seems that simple of the surface, yes.

Although note that while that 'elopement' was the first link in a chain of events, the actual important links were the actions of Brandon (characterised as foolish by Hoster Tully, and not likely to be forseeable due to their irrational stupidity) and Aerys in reaction to Brandon, that really enflamed the mess. It was a relatively minor event until Brandon threw a barrel of dynamite into the mix..

22 hours ago, Arthur Peres said:

and staying with her during most part of the rebellion,

Well, first, you have to remember how information travels in Westeros. Not really at all unless you are on the raven network and far slower than the pace of events in any case.

Personally, I think it likely that their disappearance was a deliberate effort to mitigate the potential results of the 'abduction'. If no one knows where they are, no one can start any rash 'rescue' or challenge. The most anyone can really do is start talking to each other. Its likely both Rickard and Aerys would be in agreement against this action, at least initially, so would should have happened was an exchange of missives and maybe a meeting where the parties agree with each other.
But Brandon jumped in with a treasonous challenge that was stupid and inflammatory, with no positive potential, given Rhaegar wasn't even around. 

Its likely by the time news of that got to Rhaegar, things were far too advanced for them to have done anything - likely by the time they got the news Brandon and Rickard were dead already.

22 hours ago, Arthur Peres said:

after public humiliating his Elia in the biggest tournament so far...

Notice how there is no indication that Elia felt humiliated?

There is shock and surprise, yes, and Brandon reacts badly (but then, Rhaegar had just beaten him in the jousting, but even Robert laughed it off.

22 hours ago, Arthur Peres said:

Awful husband sounds a very kind of way do describe him, crazy delusional idiot with no concern for consequences of his actions also sounds accurate, but I do like to keep things simple. English is not my first language and some people get offended over nothing...

Well, I'm, of the opinion that you should start looking a bit deeper, and thinking a bit past the surface. Try matching the limited information we have for how people actually act over longer terms, and the way they think of people (when we can see inside their heads, or as revealed in offhand comments). And consider who actually knows what, and what their biases may be.

4 hours ago, Arthur Peres said:

It's not about hindsight. Eloping with Lyanna is one of the worst decisions in the series - the only one worst that I can think is Robb and Jeyne- Lyanna was daughter of a lord paramount promissed to another lord paramount, while Rhaegar himself is married to another paramount family.  He is pissing off in one strike 3 of the 8 most powerfull families in the realm.

Is he? Well, yes, superficially. 4 in fact, since he's pissing of his father as well, 'challenging' his father's choice of wife.

But how serious are those 'insults' in the long term? Actually much less than you think.
Rickard and House Stark lose a bit of face, sure, with the broken promise (but not broken by their actions), but they gain a marriage into the royal family and Rickard's grandson will be one heartbeat from being King. Thats actually a pretty good deal for the Starks and can be further sweetened by lands, coin or titles. 
House Martell feel some insult, sure. But Elia is still Rhaegar's wife, and Aegon still his heir. They haven't really lost anything in the long term. Again, they can be sweetened with lands, coin or titles.
Robert has lost the most, but what has he really lost? A wife he never had? Who can be replaced with another, plus land, coin or titles. Its not like Robert has shown any of the personal devotion to Lyanna he later develops. Frankly, I think Robert could be bought off the easiest of them all.
And the King, in the end, has little real choice. Rhaegar is his family, and clearly the best hope for House Targaryen. Things might be stiff and awkward between them for some time (heck, they clearly already are), but in the end they are still always allies, by the strongest of blood ties.

4 hours ago, Arthur Peres said:

 It's even worst when you go away for a long time and let your crazy father in charge.

Let?
That would be the crazy father who was already in charge.

 

3 hours ago, Varysblackfyre321 said:

Meh, I think it depends. I see most of the south(especially Dorne-I imagine they'd be outraged at the shame that has been inflicted on Elllia by house Targyen)not recognizing the marriage as anymore than Maegor's second was. I think the north generally would agree.  I definitely see Ellia feeling cheated on regardless of Rheagar saying he married Lyanna before he plowed Lyanna.

Really? How do you see this. What is the evidence supporting it? How do you know Elia wasn't in on his plans? We know she has already lost his bed, due to her health and the risk if she should become pregnant again, and we know that it was always a marriage of politics, not of love.

 

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48 minutes ago, corbon said:

Really? How do you see this. What is the evidence supporting it? How do you know Elia wasn't in on his plans? We know she has already lost his bed, due to her health and the risk if she should become pregnant again, and we know that it was always a marriage of politics, not of love.

Yeah, I don’t really see Ellia being all in with the plans that will cause her to be a laughingstock.The marriage would be statement to the world Ellia has failed as wife so much that Rheagar had to take on a second wife.  The two healthy children the woman nearly died giving him wasn’t enough. Like the whole flower thing was basically a massive insult to her, and it seems to be part of Rheagar’s plan to woo Lyanna.  Rheagar's rational for why he needs a second wife, would probably seem, just flat-out insane and tinge narcissistic,(that being he needs to do it to save humanity) to Ellia. And a second wife could mean more competition for Ellia’s children. Rheagar showed far more favor to Lyanna than he ever did her, it’s not irrational to fear he’d grow to favor the children of Lyanna more than his Aegon and Rhaenys. And the faith doesn’t allow polygamy. I mean assuming Ellia is religious(which odds are she is), she would probably not see the marriage as valid from that view point. Polygamy is against the seven and hasn’t really been accepted the way Targyen inchest was.

 

48 minutes ago, corbon said:

Let?
That would be the crazy father who was already in charge.

True. Aerys is already in charge. But Rheagar let  Aerys be the only one any of the families he would’ve insulted  could send a word of protest to for months. It shows a lack of care on his part not to see the possible ramifications for his actions. By stepping out of the picture, the situation could easily escalate as soon as a formal protest is sent to the redkeep. Aerys’ first instinct any perceived threat to House Targyen(as he did with Brandon, and Rickard and tried to do with Ned and Robert) because he’s Aerys.

Edited by Varysblackfyre321

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2 hours ago, corbon said:

Is he? Well, yes, superficially. 4 in fact, since he's pissing of his father as well, 'challenging' his father's choice of wife.

 

More than you think. 

2 hours ago, corbon said:

Rickard and House Stark lose a bit of face, sure, with the broken promise (but not broken by their actions), but they gain a marriage into the royal family and Rickard's grandson will be one heartbeat from being King. Thats actually a pretty good deal for the Starks and can be further sweetened by lands, coin or titles. 

Rhaegar ruined a match that Rickard planned, suiled his daughter in the process and in the best case scenario he gets a grandson third in line for the throne with very few chances to become king. At worst a bastard kid that will be send to the wall to not become a future pretender. This insult cost Rickard his heir and later his life too. So no, it wasn't something that could be brushed off.

2 hours ago, corbon said:

House Martell feel some insult, sure. But Elia is still Rhaegar's wife, and Aegon still his heir. They haven't really lost anything in the long term. Again, they can be sweetened with lands, coin or titles.

Polligamy isn't common or accepted in westeros, even in Dorne it has a diference between a paramour and wife. Look at Oberyn and lord Yronwood.

Also, Lyanna isn't from Dorne, she isn't from this culture that will let her be Rhaegar mistress. She could replace Elia like Renly tried to do with Cersei/Margaery and this is how she would be seen.

2 hours ago, corbon said:

Robert has lost the most, but what has he really lost? A wife he never had? Who can be replaced with another, plus land, coin or titles. Its not like Robert has shown any of the personal devotion to Lyanna he later develops. Frankly, I think Robert could be bought off the easiest of them all.

Robert was insulted in front of the whole realm, Rhaegar runs away with his bride, and he becomes a joke, someone that will be mocked like the toothless lion was... You don't need to be creative to start jokes about Stags and their horns...

And once again, look at Oberyn and lord Yronwood, Brandon "the unlucky" only happened to came before Robert.

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7 hours ago, corbon said:

How do you know Elia wasn't in on his plans?

Because she's never been described as an idiot, or crazy. I also guess she knew about the Dance of the Dragons (and I'm sure Rhaegar did as well, but that's beside the point).

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Because, as foreshadowed by Arriane’s infatuation with Gerold Dayne, Elia the Dornish princess, was in love with Arthur Dayne, who fathered both her children. This is probably the sole reason Martin gave the Daynes Valyrian features, to pass off Arthur Dayne’s kids as Targs.

Aerys did say that Elia’s kids smelt Dornish, and Martin also said there is more to learn about the “honorable” Arthur Dayne.

This would make Arthur dying to defend Rhaegar’s true son while his own children were being murdered in King’s Landing incredibly poignant - the ultimate act of redemption for the “greatest knight (not just swordsman) that Ned ever knew.

And would go quite some way to justify Rhaegar and Lyanna’s actions.

That’s my theory, at least.

Edited by Free Northman Reborn

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34 minutes ago, Free Northman Reborn said:

Because, as foreshadowed by Arriane’s infatuation with Gerold Dayne, Elia the Dornish princess, was in love with Arthur Dayne, who fathered both her children. This is probably the sole reason Martin gave the Daynes Valyrian features, to pass off Arthur Dayne’s kids as Targs.

Aerys did say that Elia’s kids smelt Dornish, and Martin also said there is more to learn about the “honorable” Arthur Dayne.

This would make Arthur dying to defend Rhaegar’s true son while his own children were being murdered in King’s Landing incredibly poignant - the ultimate act of redemption for the “greatest knight (not just swordsman) that Ned ever knew.

And would go quite some way to justify Rhaegar and Lyanna’s actions.

That’s my theory, at least.

Not that this can be definitively ruled out, but there is as of yet no evidence Arthur had fair hair. The only Dayne of that generation whose coloring has been described, Ashara, had dark hair. Edric's and Gerold's colorings could easily be something that is not typically Dayne.

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8 minutes ago, Bael's Bastard said:

Not that this can be definitively ruled out, but there is as of yet no evidence Arthur had fair hair. The only Dayne of that generation whose coloring has been described, Ashara, had dark hair. Edric's and Gerold's colorings could easily be something that is not typically Dayne.

Arthur needn’t have fair hair. The kids just needed Dayne genes to have a chance of passing as Targs.

But that’s the least part of the theory in any case.

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1 hour ago, Free Northman Reborn said:

Arthur needn’t have fair hair. The kids just needed Dayne genes to have a chance of passing as Targs.

But that’s the least part of the theory in any case.

I disagree.

Just to be clear, assuming for the sake of argument that Arthur and Elia had an affair, I am not objecting on the grounds that they would have had to worry about how the coloring of any children they had would come out. Every Dayne thus far has had the purple eyes, and we know that matches like Rhaegar and Elia (fair haired Targaryen + dark haired parent) have produced children with dark hair and purple eyes, like Daeron II + Mariah Martell = Prince Baelor. For Elia to pop out children with dark hair and purple eyes, like Rhaenys, wouldn't have been the end of the world.

The issue is that we know in hindsight that baby Aegon had fair hair, which must have come from one of his parents. If Arthur turns out to have fair hair like his nephew Edric or cousin Gerold, then I think that will make this theory more plausible, and more acceptable. If Arthur turns out to have dark hair like his sister Ashara, it will be pretty absurd if it is then revealed that a dark haired Arthur and dark haired Elia fathered fair haired Aegon. It may yet turn out that Arthur or his other siblings did indeed have fair hair. But as of now, that is not a typical Dayne trait. As of now, we just have it in a son of Arthur's brother, and a cadet branch cousin, which could come from sources other than their Dayne parents.

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I don't understand why people are theorizing that Elia had an affair??? It's so unfair and victim blaming. Elia was a total victim in all of this and trying to sully her name by saying she had an affair is just horrible. 

On the topic of whether Rhaegar loved Lyanna or was just using her. I think he did (love her), or at least some sort of strong infatuation. I think the reason he chose her in the first place is because he loved her. There are subtle clues that make me think this: the naming of the tower of joy, and, the fact that he said her name when he died. You would have to be Ramsay Snow level of psycho for him to do these things for a woman he brutally tortured for a year.  He couldn't of known that Stark+Targaryen would be such a potent combination. I've seen people theorize this but I see no evidence. Everyone in-verse thinks the song is ice VS fire, not ice AND fire mix. Do you know what I mean?

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3 minutes ago, Geddus said:

To absolve precious Rhaegar, of course.

I think it would be more productive to actually ask the person proposing it than make assumptions. I don't believe that Elia had an affair, but if I recall correctly, @Free Northman Reborn doesn't much care for Rhaegar in particular, or Targaryens in general, so I am not sure absolving Rhaegar would be a motivation.

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21 hours ago, Arthur Peres said:

It's not about hindsight. Eloping with Lyanna is one of the worst decisions in the series - the only one worst that I can think is Robb and Jeyne- Lyanna was daughter of a lord paramount promissed to another lord paramount, while Rhaegar himself is married to another paramount family.  He is pissing off in one strike 3 of the 8 most powerfull families in the realm. It's even worst when you go away for a long time and let your crazy father in charge.

Running away with lyanna is the equivalent of trying to cuckold a hellangel in his moto club. Does not take a genious to know that it will end very badly.

Yes, it IS about hindsight. Because expecting consequences =/= expecting Brandon Stark to ride to KL and yell "come out and die". If the matter had been left in Rickard's hands, he could have sent a message via the raven, and Aerys could have burnt the scroll all he wanted.

And since you mention Robb and Jeyne yourself, it is exactly the same scenario: it causes a problematic situation and Freys can be reasonably expected to stop supporting him and even turning their cloaks to fight on the Lannister side. No-one in their right sense, though, could or should have expected the response that actually took place, that was far out of proportion.

21 hours ago, Arthur Peres said:

Tywin is alive. Aerys is not. Mad or not this is the guy that burned his father and brother alive and then asked for his head... If he won't bad mounth him, I don't see him doing it with anyone.

Ned just moved on with his life, unlike Robert, he does not think about Rhaegar or Aerys much.

Nice that you base it on your own standard but some textual support would be nice. 

20 hours ago, Varysblackfyre321 said:

Meh, I think it depends. I see most of the south(especially Dorne-I imagine they'd be outraged at the shame that has been inflicted on Elllia by house Targyen)not recognizing the marriage as anymore than Maegor's second was. I think the north generally would agree.  I definitely see Ellia feeling cheated on regardless of Rheagar saying he married Lyanna before he plowed Lyanna. Really a lack of empathy on Lyanna’s part. Truth be told I think Ellia would see Rheagar’s action to be a worse form of cheating than simply going to a whorehouse or taking on a mistress. 

Possibly - but we are talking Lyanna's angle here, and there is a lot that she could soothe her conscience with.

20 hours ago, Varysblackfyre321 said:

I mean it's not really hard to see  his actions leading to a chain of events where a lot of people die. I mean Robert could've easily been the one to go to KL to demand restitution for Lyanna being stolen from him. Someone important bothering Aerys about this incident was a real possibilty. And Aerys could be reasonably guessed to kill the person who raised the issue by anyone who knew him.

I don't possess TWOIAF but I don't recall anyone mentioning Aerys lashing against the most powerful houses in the realm when they had done nothing wrong; feel free to correct me if that ever happened.

Also, since we don't know the why/how/etc., it is really hard to argue what Rhaegar could have expected or not.

4 hours ago, zoenerys said:

I don't understand why people are theorizing that Elia had an affair??? It's so unfair and victim blaming. Elia was a total victim in all of this and trying to sully her name by saying she had an affair is just horrible. 

And why shouldn't she have an affair? She was married to a man who didn't love her, and we don't know if she loved him or not. Perhaps she found a soulmate in Arthur? 

Personally, I find the whole "poor Elia cheated on wife" way more victimizing than Elia taking her love life into her own hands and e.g. offering Rhaegar a deal that would allow them both to follow the calling of their hearts.

4 hours ago, zoenerys said:

On the topic of whether Rhaegar loved Lyanna or was just using her. I think he did (love her), or at least some sort of strong infatuation. I think the reason he chose her in the first place is because he loved her. There are subtle clues that make me think this: the naming of the tower of joy, and, the fact that he said her name when he died. You would have to be Ramsay Snow level of psycho for him to do these things for a woman he brutally tortured for a year.  He couldn't of known that Stark+Targaryen would be such a potent combination. I've seen people theorize this but I see no evidence. Everyone in-verse thinks the song is ice VS fire, not ice AND fire mix. Do you know what I mean?

Do they?

An earlier plan to marry a Targ and Stark (didn't happen in the end) was called "a pact of ice and fire". If Rhaegar read about it in the family chronicles, he may have figured it out.

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17 hours ago, Varysblackfyre321 said:

Yeah, I don’t really see Ellia being all in with the plans that will cause her to be a laughingstock.The marriage would be statement to the world Ellia has failed as wife so much that Rheagar had to take on a second wife.  The two healthy children the woman nearly died giving him wasn’t enough. Like the whole flower thing was basically a massive insult to her, and it seems to be part of Rheagar’s plan to woo Lyanna.  Rheagar's rational for why he needs a second wife, would probably seem, just flat-out insane and tinge narcissistic,(that being he needs to do it to save humanity) to Ellia. And a second wife could mean more competition for Ellia’s children. Rheagar showed far more favor to Lyanna than he ever did her, it’s not irrational to fear he’d grow to favor the children of Lyanna more than his Aegon and Rhaenys. And the faith doesn’t allow polygamy. I mean assuming Ellia is religious(which odds are she is), she would probably not see the marriage as valid from that view point. Polygamy is against the seven and hasn’t really been accepted the way Targyen inchest was.

So, no evidence, just opinion, opinion, opinion.
And not well founded opinion either. The Faith does accept Targaryen polygamy, through the doctrine of Exceptionalism. All of the Targaryen line is descended through not only a second polygamous wife but an incestuous second Targaryen wife. But they are all considered legitimate.
Yes, it was unusual, and may have caused some frictions, but it was definitely an option and Rhaegar may well have thought (possibly even correctly) that he could get past those frictions to get what he needed (third head), even though it hadn't been done for a long time.

Anyone who denies the possibility of Rhaegar having two wives is not following the clear and unambiguous indications of the text. There may have been repercussions, yes. But it is absolutely clear that it would have been legal. The only question is how big those repercussions may have been, and some will argue too big, I argue for much less than they think.

17 hours ago, Varysblackfyre321 said:

True. Aerys is already in charge. But Rheagar let  Aerys be the only one any of the families he would’ve insulted  could send a word of protest to for months. It shows a lack of care on his part not to see the possible ramifications for his actions. By stepping out of the picture, the situation could easily escalate as soon as a formal protest is sent to the redkeep. Aerys’ first instinct any perceived threat to House Targyen(as he did with Brandon, and Rickard and tried to do with Ned and Robert) because he’s Aerys.

I disagree. 
I look at the situation and I see that the risk is greatest if Rhaegar and Lyanna are visible. Then you risk the hotheads doing rash things and people dying.
Take Rhaegar and Lyanna out of the picture and you have a much safer process, with the two parties involved actually agreeing in principle.

Problem was, Brandon did something that was rash and stupid and without positive consequences for his cause. So it wasn't foreseeable.

14 hours ago, Arthur Peres said:

Rhaegar ruined a match that Rickard planned, suiled his daughter

The daughter is not soiled if she is married.

14 hours ago, Arthur Peres said:

in the process and in the best case scenario he gets a grandson third in line for the throne with very few chances to become king.

Third in line now, yes. But second in his own generation. Should something happen to Aegon, Rickard's grandson is likely to sit the Iron throne.

14 hours ago, Arthur Peres said:

At worst a bastard kid that will be send to the wall to not become a future pretender. This insult cost Rickard his heir and later his life too. So no, it wasn't something that could be brushed off.

You are arguing from the actual real position, not the potential position under discussion.
There is no actual insult once its settled - in fact its a complement. And how it should have gone, without Brandon's idiocy, would leave Rickard and Brandon unharmed, and probably with further rewards.

14 hours ago, Arthur Peres said:

Polligamy isn't common or accepted in westeros, even in Dorne it has a diference between a paramour and wife. Look at Oberyn and lord Yronwood.

Also, Lyanna isn't from Dorne, she isn't from this culture that will let her be Rhaegar mistress. She could replace Elia like Renly tried to do with Cersei/Margaery and this is how she would be seen.

This has nothing to do with Dorne. Look up the Doctrine of Exceptionalism. And note that all the Targaryens are descended from a polygamous, incestuous second wife and are considered legitimate.

14 hours ago, Arthur Peres said:

Robert was insulted in front of the whole realm, Rhaegar runs away with his bride, and he becomes a joke, someone that will be mocked like the toothless lion was... You don't need to be creative to start jokes about Stags and their horns...

A little bit, yes. But Robert wasn't horned, because she never was his bride, only his betrothed.
Robert didn't have any indication of caring much about Lyanna then, and he laughed off the Harrenhal incident. It is likely he could have been bought off with other options and some rewards.

14 hours ago, Arthur Peres said:

And once again, look at Oberyn and lord Yronwood, Brandon "the unlucky" only happened to came before Robert.

Thats significantly different. Oberyn insulted Yronwood vastly more be stealing his chosen bed partner, and being caught doing it. Not to mention his youth, which adds massive personal insult to an older man. Lyanna was never intimate with Robert, and was chosen as politics. And if Rhaegar married her, then its a further whole different story.

10 hours ago, Geddus said:

Because she's never been described as an idiot, or crazy. I also guess she knew about the Dance of the Dragons (and I'm sure Rhaegar did as well, but that's beside the point).

Good evidence. Oh just opinion again.

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5 hours ago, Geddus said:

To absolve precious Rhaegar, of course.

I think if you pay attention, you'll find that people promoting Elia having had an affair are mostly doing it because they can;t stand R+L=J. 
Ygraine, I think, is not 'promoting it', just point it out as a possibility. Not for the sake of Rhaegar, but for the sake of Elia, giving her more character and more agency in her own life.

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13 minutes ago, corbon said:

Third in line now, yes. But second in his own generation. Should something happen to Aegon, Rickard's grandson is likely to sit the Iron throne.

Aerys is what by that time ? 40 ? Even if he died right away falling from the latter Rhaegar is still very young and healthy. how much time until he dies? 40? 50? by this time how many kids does Aegon VI has? Lyanna's child has very few chances to take the crow.

18 minutes ago, corbon said:

You are arguing from the actual real position, not the potential position under discussion.

yep, because this show how insulted the Starks were... "Rhaegar come out and die" is not a reaction you take over something that was light.

21 minutes ago, corbon said:

 There is no actual insult once its settled - in fact its a complement. And how it should have gone, without Brandon's idiocy, would leave Rickard and Brandon unharmed, and probably with further rewards.

Complement? It was a huge insult as Brandon reaction shows it. And settled? Rhaegar run away for months and let his crazy father to deal with the situation. 

Had he stayed to deal with his own mess I could agree with your point but this is not something Rhaegar did.

22 minutes ago, corbon said:

This has nothing to do with Dorne. Look up the Doctrine of Exceptionalism. And note that all the Targaryens are descended from a polygamous, incestuous second wife and are considered legitimate.

Polligamy wasn't common even for targs, and ancient targs could get away with a lot more bs because they had dragons. Times have changed and Rhaegar "the hammered" learned the hard way.

29 minutes ago, corbon said:

But Robert wasn't horned, because she never was his bride, only his betrothed.
Robert didn't have any indication of caring much about Lyanna then, and he laughed off the Harrenhal incident. It is likely he could have been bought off with other options and some rewards.

I remember some pov saying that Robert joked about it, but I pretty sure it was someone that wasn't at the tourney, Eddard remembers it very diferently.

"Ned remembered the moment when all the smiles died, when Prince Rhaegar Targaryen urged his horse past his own wife, the Dornish princess Elia Martell, to lay the queen of beauty’s laurel in Lyanna’s lap. He could see it still: a crown of winter roses, blue as frost"

 

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1 hour ago, Ygrain said:

I don't possess TWOIAF but I don't recall anyone mentioning Aerys lashing against the most powerful houses in the realm when they had done nothing wrong; feel free to correct me if that ever happened.

In fact, the only notable previous example we have of Aerys lashing out against a noble house was after the Defiance of Duskendale, in which:

- Lord Denys Darklyn ceased paying taxes
- Lord Darklyn "invited" Aerys to come to Duskendale to hear his petition
- Lord Darklyn seized Aerys and took him hostage, killing those in his small escort that tried to protect him
- Lord Darklyn's master-at-arms Ser Symon Hollard killed Aery's sworn Kingsguard knight Ser Gwayne Gaunt
- Lord Darklyn's men shoved, stripped, struck, and pulled Aerys's beard while in captivity
- Lord Darklyn held Aerys for half a year, and threatened to kill him if anyone tried rescue him

Houses Darklyn and Hollard were not only subjects to Aerys as their king, but his own Crownlands bannermen, and Aerys did not just randomly pick a fight with and destroy these bannermen.

I doubt a single of the great lords, or even many of the lesser liege lords, would have sided with the Darklyns and the actions they took against their king and liege lord, lest their own bannermen get any ideas.

Even if any of them considered Aerys's response extreme, the actions of House Darklyn and Hollard were extreme, and it would be a terrible precedent for such treason by bannermen to go unpunished.

In other words, the great houses had no reason to believe that Aerys would murder the lord and heir of the North, murder the heir of the Vale, then demand that the lord of the Vale murder the lords of the Stormlands and the new lord of the North, no doubt threatening the lord of the Vale if he didn't comply.

Even if they thought Aerys was crazy and violent, that was so far beyond any line he had crossed or hinted at crossing.

1 hour ago, Ygrain said:

An earlier plan to marry a Targ and Stark (didn't happen in the end) was called "a pact of ice and fire". If Rhaegar read about it in the family chronicles, he may have figured it out.

Rhaegar wouldn't have needed to dig too deep to find out about the Pact of Ice and Fire.

Munkun, who served Regent and Hand of the King in the early years of Aegon III, and who appears to have served as Grand Maester from 131 AC to as late as the death of King Baelor I in 171 AC, wrote about the pact. He called it the Pact of Ice and Fire in his work "The Dance of the Dragons, A True Telling," a work sympathetic to Rhaenyra, the Princess of Dragonstone and heir of King Viserys I.

Edited by Bael's Bastard

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