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56 minutes ago, JNR said:

What's obvious is that this policy would be a serious issue in dealing with other families than his own.

It would have been obvious to him as well, and likely would have been seen as so fundamentally unfair as to defeat his sense of personal honor.  The canonical emphasis on returning the remains of highborn deceased to the proper families comes up again and again.

This is not a "policy" but a decision made by Ned in the aftermath of the combat of the Tower of Joy. It is no different than what one would expect of how the bodies of dead would be handled. Ned does not leave the dead to be food for the vultures. He builds cairns to mark the burial place and treats the dead of both sides with respect. For what it's worth, let me say I think there is more to Lady Dustin's anger towards Ned than what we know. By which I mean I don't think the anger is all about the location of Lord Dustin's remains, although that could be a contributing factor.

I do find it strange that you're arguing both that Lyanna didn't die at the Tower of Joy AND that Ned's handling of the honored dead at the Tower is a source of anger from Lady Dustin. Which implies that Lady Dustin is angered around this issue because her husband and Lyanna died in the SAME location and their bodies were handled differently. It seems entirely contradictory to me. Her anger maybe understandable if they die in the same location, but if Lyanna dies in Starfall while Lord Dustin dies at the Tower of Joy one would not expect Lady Dustin's response. In short, you are using evidence that supports them dying in the same place to support an argument that they died far apart. It doesn't work.

That Ned doesn't return the bodies or the bones of the dead and we hear of no other families taking steps to return their bones to their homelands I think speaks to how acceptable Ned's treatment of the dead really is. 

2 hours ago, JNR said:

Furthermore, we know Ned, driven by his honor, went to the extreme trouble of returning Lady Dustin's horse:

That's remarkable -- more than a thousand miles of caretaking in order to get that done.  But he didn't bother with the bones of her husband?  Oh, dear.

The horse is still alive and useful on a long trip. However, the horse can't likely find his way home safely on its own. Ned did an honorable thing by bringing the horse back to the North and returning the stallion to Lady Dustin.

2 hours ago, JNR said:

Now since it can't be disputed that Ned did build the cairns, that coming from his waking memory and not the dream, I think the odds are strong Ned did not know of any local silent sisters and did not believe any other means of treating the remains for travel was available (or he'd have used it). 

He evidently believed in the circumstances the best thing he could do for the remains was build the cairns, so that's what he did.

I agree with this, but I don't think we can rule out local Silent Sisters. I think it much more likely that they simply take Lyanna's body with them to where they can find help rendering it to bones, or there is someone, like a maester, at the tower who would be skilled in doing this.

2 hours ago, JNR said:

But that also implies he simply did not have that problem to deal with in Lyanna's case. Which in turn implies that she did not die there.

No, that is a illogical jump that isn't justified by any evidence.

2 hours ago, JNR said:

Well, that's just it.  We don't know he treated Lyanna's body differently, because we don't know where she died.

 

Wrong on the both issues. We know the bodies are treated differently whether or not that difference is understandable, and we know, through all known evidence, where Lyanna died.

2 hours ago, JNR said:

If I were forced to guess, I'd say it was the TOJ... but that's only because of the dream, which is indicted by its own surrealism as trustworthy or accurate. 

I think your guess would be accurate, but I really don't think you are interested in my views on the dream

2 hours ago, JNR said:

As for the app, what we do know is that it contains information even its creator (Ran) doesn't believe.  The app's info is clearly similar to the appendices, which lack any POV, and therefore can't be assessed for accuracy, and almost certainly only reflect what is widely believed, not what is true. 

The app, just like the books themselves have information that is inaccurate. The trick is to shift through the questionable to judge what is true and what is not. Apply the same rules as you do for the app as you do with the books.

2 hours ago, JNR said:

I think it would be fair to say it is widely believed in Westeros, since the war, that Lyanna died at the TOJ.  Whether she did, we will have to wait to see.

I agree with the first, but I'm always ready for new information.

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/scratches her head/ Funny how after all those years, the debate is still running in the same circles.

Lyanna made a deathbed wish to be buried at Winterfell, so Ned had no choice but to come up with some solution. However, applying such a solution to a single body, and not a particularly big one, is definitely not the same as solving the issue of transporting eight more bodies of fully grown men.

To transport a body, you either have to find some means to preserve the soft tissues, or deflesh it, as you definitely don't want to travel around with a decaying body leaking fluid and attracting flies, not to mention that you have to assess the security risks, depending whether Ned was travelling along with newborn Jon or not - carrying around you deceased sister's body and a baby would be a dead giveaway (sorry for the pun). And even if you are lucky enough not to be noticed on the way, the Silent Sisters are another security risk. How sure can you be that they will remain silent when offered that they might get out of the order and live the rest of their lives in luxury, that they will not convey the information about a young woman who had given birth prior her death?

So, unless Ned is willing to take the risks of transporting Lyanna's body to the Silent Sisters, he has to deal with her body on his own. To obtain enough of some preserving medium (alcohol, vinegar, salt etc.) and a container, he would need to reach some civilisation, so again, security risk and the body decaying if he doesn't find what he needs soon enough. Plus, the problem of transport - the burden becomes too big and heavy to be carried by a horse, you would need a cart.

So, the other option, defleshing. We know from Barristan that it's done by boiling via the Silent Sisters, or bugs eating the flesh away, or cremation. Bugs take time, which Ned doesn't have, and I don't think he would be willing to leave Lyanna's body behind, anyway. So, we're finally getting to the fastest, cleanest, and most logical solution - cremation. Gather fuel, burn the body, collect the remains. Can be carried around in an urn or satchel. ToJ is not in a desert area, it already has some fuel supply for cooking and washing, there may even be some furniture, straw or hay. Gathering enough fuel for a single cremation shouldn't be that difficult even if you are short of manpower and time.

Now, take all those troubles that you have with arranging Lyanna's body for transport and multiply that by five (or eight, since the KG definitely deserve the honorable treatment, too). Even the simplest solution, the cremation, becomes a problem because of the amount of fuel you need. There is simply no way all the nine bodies could get the same treatment, so Ned has to prioritize. He has to do something about Lyanna because that's what he promised, and gives the others a decent burial. Everybody who is not Lady Dustin seems to understand that there are circumstances when you can only do so much. Ned brings back the horse because the bloody beast only needs the same treatment that Ned has to give his own horse, anyway, walks on its own and doesn't leak body fluids or lose pieces of flesh along the way.

Edited by Ygrain

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It makes sense for Ned to bring back Lord Dustin's horse, as it would have been very useful during the long journey, unlike the remains of the half a dozen or so companions that died at the tower of joy. Even if Lyanna hadn't requested to be buried in the crypts, I have a feeling Ned would have brought her remains back to the crypts anyways.

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42 minutes ago, Bael's Bastard said:

Even if Lyanna hadn't requested to be buried in the crypts, I have a feeling Ned would have brought her remains back to the crypts anyways.

Most likely. But due to the promise, he had to.

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2 hours ago, Ygrain said:

Lyanna made a deathbed wish to be buried at Winterfell, so Ned had no choice but to come up with some solution.

There is no textual evidence that she made such a wish. All we have is Ned telling Robert that this is what she wanted, but that's not the same as us knowing she actually asked for that, is it? Ned definitely lied to Robert about Lyanna and her child, so there is no reason to assume he told him the truth about where she wanted to be buried.

He could have just made that up to justify his own wish to bring his Lya back to Winterfell where she, in his opinion, belonged. He even broke tradition in granting her a statue in the crypts, indicating that she meant more to him than the average Stark sister meant to the average Lord of Winterfell - because none of those ever got such statues.

But even if she actually wasted her dying breath on specifying her final resting place - at this point we have no evidence that this happened. Only Ned's word to Robert. And that's not worth all that much.

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1 hour ago, Lord Varys said:

There is no textual evidence that she made such a wish. All we have is Ned telling Robert that this is what she wanted <snip/>

LV, please read this much of your response over and over to yourself or out loud and ask if there is a problem?

Yes, the textual evidence could be a lie, but it is both straight out of the text and unquestionably evidence to be considered. Now, I don't for a moment think that is the only promise Ned made to her on her deathbed. But could it be part of the "promises" (plural from the text) that Ned made to his sister as he lay dying? Yes.

Edited by SFDanny

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10 minutes ago, SFDanny said:

LV, please read this much of your response over and over to yourself or out loud and ask if there is a problem?

Yes, the textual evidence could be a lie, but it is both straight out of the text and unquestionably evidence to be considered. Now, I don't for a moment think that is the only promise Ned made to her on her deathbed. But could it be part of the "promises" (plural from the text) that Ned made to his sister as he lay dying? Yes.

I didn't say that Lya couldn't have asked Ned to promise her that, I pointed out that we have no evidence that what he told Robert is actually true.

We don't know from Lyanna Stark where she wanted to be buried. A character claiming X is the case isn't the same as X being the case - and us knowing that X is the case. And you do know that.

Ned Stark also said Jon Snow was his bastard. Does this mean he is his son? No. There is ample evidence to question anything Ned told or insinuated about Lyanna, especially in conversation with Robert.

Overall, the idea that there were no other people at the tower - at a place close to the Prince's Pass - is also not very believable. There must have been at least a wetnurse considering that neither Ned nor Howland could have breastfed the child (if the child was there). And if a wetnurse was there then a maester, other servants, etc. could have been there, too. It could help in that tearing down the tower thing as well as in the transporting department.

Prince Aegon also had Yandry and Ysilla on the Shy Maid, and nobody thought that the first thing they would once they parted ways is to rat him out. Just because some commoners know things doesn't mean they have to tell tales. Especially since some Dornish peasants may not ever have had the opportunity to connect whatever child was in that tower to Eddard Stark's bastard. They may have never even heard that Eddard Stark had a bastard, nor understood who the guy was who had arrived there.

There is also no reason not to believe Ned dropped off Lyanna's corpse at the next septry or castle where silent sisters were available while he was continuing on to Starfall for some reason. Lyanna was dead and he could pick up her bones on the way back.

In fact, it is actually rather interesting that Ned actually went to Starfall afterwards. He could have handed Dawn to some local Dornishmen, charging them with returning it. He could also have kept it to hand it over to Robert as a trophy of war (or as a means for negotiation with the Daynes later on).

One assumes he must have felt a rather strong need to go there, or else he would have just then and there decided to deal with his family issues. He had just lost his sister and a bunch of very good friends, not to mention the infant he had to deal with.

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6 hours ago, SFDanny said:

Her anger maybe understandable if they die in the same location, but if Lyanna dies in Starfall while Lord Dustin dies at the Tower of Joy one would not expect Lady Dustin's response. In short, you are using evidence that supports them dying in the same place to support an argument that they died far apart. It doesn't work.

Oh, it certainly does.  Because Lady Dustin has evidently heard the tale of the TOJ from Ned, and she believes it, and her anger is based on that premise.

GRRM's pretty good about this sort of thing.  Character reactions do not stem from some sort of omniscient knowledge of truth, as you appear to think they should; instead they emerge from the information characters actually have at particular points in time.

Your case above is roughly like saying "But if Jon is really Rhaegar and Lyanna's son, why would Catelyn be unhappy that Ned raised him at Winterfell?" 

6 hours ago, SFDanny said:

Ned did an honorable thing by bringing the horse back to the North and returning the stallion to Lady Dustin.

Yes, he did, but you seem seriously to believe he did a dishonorable and lazy thing, in not bringing Arthur Dayne's remains to Starfall.

You seem to believe this, even though it was literally the next place he was going after finding Lyanna (in your scenario), and even though he had the option to bring Arthur's remains (because he had the option to bring Lyanna's remains to Winterfell).

Pray tell, if you can, what Ned's motive to do this could possibly have been. To illustrate with some imaginary dialogue:

Quote

 

ASHARA: Where's Arthur?

NED: He died, so we had no choice but to bury him. We built a cairn for him, though.

ASHARA: I see.  Well, where's Lyanna?

NED: She died at the same location, so of course I'm moving her remains to Winterfell.

ASHARA: (long pause) Can you really not see the problem here, Ned?

 

If Lyanna wasn't there, this entire problem disappears. That is, Ned buried all the corpses at the TOJ, no exceptions.

And the reason he had the option to move Lyanna back to Winterfell is that she died a different place -- somewhere her remains could be treated for travel.  So the above situation would never arise.  In fact, she could have died at Starfall.

7 hours ago, SFDanny said:

I really don't think you are interested in my views on the dream

Well, I'm more interested in GRRM's when asked about that dream:

Quote

Our dreams are not always literal.

Seems like he could have said nothing, but this was his choice instead.

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1 hour ago, JNR said:

Oh, it certainly does.  Because Lady Dustin has evidently heard the tale of the TOJ from Ned, and she believes it, and her anger is based on that premise.

Evidently? There's no indication she's heard that tale. Only that Lord Dustin died in the Red mountains of Dorne and was laid to rest there. No indication of any more detail than that.

Quote

"Ned Stark returned the horse to me on his way back home to Winterfell. He told me that my lord had died an honorable death, that his body had been laid to rest beneath the red mountains of Dorne. He brought his sister's bones back north, though, and there she rests … but I promise you, Lord Eddard's bones will never rest beside hers. I mean to feed them to my dogs."

 

1 hour ago, JNR said:

GRRM's pretty good about this sort of thing.  Character reactions do not stem from some sort of omniscient knowledge of truth, as you appear to think they should; instead they emerge from the information characters actually have at particular points in time.

I agree entirely. But you are assuming information she makes not indication of having. And ignoring other information that relates to her anger.
She knows Dustin died honourably somewhere in the red mountains of Dorne.
She knows that he is laid to rest there. 
She knows that Ned bought Lyanna's bones back (and the Red Stallion). 
She does not display any knowledge that Dustin died in the same place as Lyanna.
She also indicates that her father would have given her maidenhood to any Stark, but that Brandon wanted it and took it. Not that she offered it, but that Brandon took it - though it was a "sweet pain" afterward.
She's bitter that she lost Brandon, and then Ned, and ended up with a mere Dustin. The lost him too, to the war.

There's not even any clear indication that she's bitter in particular about Lyanna's bones being returned and not her husbands. Its merely mentioned (Lyanna's, not her husband's). It may be an additional point of bitterness or just an extra fact. She doesn't indicate any bitterness about Lord Dustin's bones not being returned, only anger at Ned and the Starks, who in effect took everything away from her.
Any even that may be feigned, for all we know. She's talking to Reek/Theon at the time, after all, who she may well expect to report her words back to Ramsey Bolton.

What we have in the text is suspect for a start, due to context, and a very long way from clearly indicating that she expects Lord Dustin's bones to have been returned.
It puzzles me how people can extrapolate out from anything in the text anywhere about returning the bones of the dead that Ned "should have" returned the bones of any who fell at the ToJ, never mind the circumstances and resources available to him at the time.

1 hour ago, JNR said:

Yes, he did, but you seem seriously to believe he did a dishonorable and lazy thing, in not bringing Arthur Dayne's remains to Starfall.

I'm a little curious about how you figure this. I don't see how anything he said could be construed this way?

1 hour ago, JNR said:

Pray tell, if you can, what Ned's motive to do this could possibly have been. To illustrate with some imaginary dialogue:

Lame imaginary dialogue that doesn't fit the paradigm is irrelevant.

1 hour ago, JNR said:

If Lyanna wasn't there, this entire problem disappears. That is, Ned buried all the corpses at the TOJ, no exceptions.

There is no problem!
No one single character ever complains about the bones of the dead at the ToJ not being returned. Or other bones of fallen warriors during wartime.
Not even Lady Dustin, who makes clear her complaint is about her earlier history with the Starks then references Lyanna's bones being returned without indicating Dustin's should have been,
A few times it is noted that returning the bones of the dead to their families, in certain circumstances is a courtesy. It is not required, and not expected. Only one of those circumstances match to honourable battle - Jon Arryn returning Lewyn Martell's bones to Dorne, because he wanted to seal the new King's peace and do the diplomacy thing with Doran (much like the Freys wanted to do the diplomacy thing with Lord Manderly, despite having murdered his son).
Lyanna though, like Wendel Manderley, or Lady, or even Eddard Stark, was a noncombatant, hostage or prisoner. 

 

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3 hours ago, Lord Varys said:

I didn't say that Lya couldn't have asked Ned to promise her that, I pointed out that we have no evidence that what he told Robert is actually true.

Really? once again this is what you said:

6 hours ago, Lord Varys said:

There is no textual evidence that she made such a wish. All we have is Ned telling Robert that this is what she wanted ...

Here is the textual evidence that you actually acknowledge in the rest of the sentence above:

Quote

"She was a stark of Winterfell." Ned said quietly. "This is her place."

"She should be on a hill somewhere, under a fruit tree, with the sun and clouds above her and the rain to wash her clean."

"I was with her when she died," Ned reminded the king. "She wanted to come home, to rest beside Brandon and Father." He could hear her still at time. Promise me, she had cried. in a room that smelled of blood and roses. Promise me, Ned. (AGoT 49) bold emphasis added

Now, I'm not arguing the truth of what Ned tells Robert here, although I think it is true. Just not all of the truth. What I'm saying is that Ned's words to Robert are textual evidence to be weighed by the reader for its truth or falsehood. It is just a tad silly, LV, to say there is no textual evidence on subject when you reference the textual evidence in the same sentence.

Edited by SFDanny

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16 minutes ago, SFDanny said:

Really? once again this is what you said:

Here is the textual evidence that you actually acknowledge in the rest of the sentence above:

Now, I'm not arguing the truth of what Ned tells Robert here, although I think it is true. Just not all of the truth. What I'm saying is that Ned's words to Robert are textual evidence to be weighed by the reader for its truth or falsehood. It is just a tad silly, LV, to say there is no textual evidence on subject when you reference the textual evidence in the same sentence.

Oh, come on, I specify what I meant by that sentence immediately thereafter:

6 hours ago, Lord Varys said:

There is no textual evidence that she made such a wish. All we have is Ned telling Robert that this is what she wanted, but that's not the same as us knowing she actually asked for that, is it? Ned definitely lied to Robert about Lyanna and her child, so there is no reason to assume he told him the truth about where she wanted to be buried.

Proper textual evidence is not hearsay. There is also textual evidence that Sansa Stark slew Joffrey Baratheon and transformed into a winged wolf, just as there is textual evidence that Stannis Baratheon controlled the boar that killed Robert Baratheon via skinchanging.

We usually don't cite this 'textual evidence' as textual evidence when discussing those topics, do we?

Ned talks about Lyanna's death to Robert and then he remembers her death, but he never actually confirms that he promised her to bring her back home. The author sets the stage that a first-time reader interprets the passage in such a way - Lyanna was dying, Ned talked to her, and he promised her to bring her body home - but with what we learn later it is exceedingly unlikely that the question of Lyanna's final resting place ever came up in that conversation.

Especially if Lyanna actually fell in love with Rhaegar and married him and knew he was dead when she died, too, it would be rather odd that she would have wanted to be dumped (anonymously) into the Stark crypts like a maiden who died before her marriage. Instead, one assumes, she would have wished to rest beside her husband - which would have been on Dragonstone, where all the Targaryens (and presumably also their non-sibling spouses) are interred. That is confirmed basically for all the Targaryen kings and queens up to the Dance (aside from Alyssa Velaryon who was buried at Storm's End, with her second husband's family).

But as I said above already - my point is not to claim Lyanna did not ask for that or that Ned did not promise it. My point is that it is just FACTUALLY WRONG to claim we know she asked and he made such a promise. Because we don't. Structurally this is exactly the same mistake as claiming that we 'know' that Jon Snow is Ned's son - because we have textual evidence for that, too, and people also believe that this is true.

It was always odd to interpret the above scene in such a way. Because Lyanna is very afraid in Ned's memory there, so what is this about? Is this Lyanna woman supposed to be so superstitious that she could only think about her proper burial place when she was dying? Most likely not, as later chapters indicate. But I recall that I noted this oddity during my first read and thought that this was strange.

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2 hours ago, JNR said:

Oh, it certainly does.  Because Lady Dustin has evidently heard the tale of the TOJ from Ned, and she believes it, and her anger is based on that premise.

GRRM's pretty good about this sort of thing.  Character reactions do not stem from some sort of omniscient knowledge of truth, as you appear to think they should; instead they emerge from the information characters actually have at particular points in time.

I'm fairly certain Lady Dustin believes the tale Ned tells her, including the not spelled out idea that Lyanna and Lord Dustin died in same place. Which is part of my point. You are quoting her belief pointing to this understanding of Lord Dustin's and Lyanna's death as having happened in the same locale in support of a theory that supposes Lyanna dies in Starfall. There is an obvious disconnect between the two. Lady Dustin's anger, while misplaced and seemingly well beyond what most people would feel in the situation, is only really understood if she really believes that Lyanna and Lord Dustin died in the same place but Ned did not treat their bodies in the same way. Throw in the idea that Lyanna died some weeks later in a totally different place and under entirely different circumstances places Lady D's response as totally not understandable. As such, it doesn't support the idea of Lyanna dying in Starfall.

2 hours ago, JNR said:

Yes, he did, but you seem seriously to believe he did a dishonorable and lazy thing, in not bringing Arthur Dayne's remains to Starfall.

You seem to believe this, even though it was literally the next place he was going after finding Lyanna (in your scenario), and even though he had the option to bring Arthur's remains (because he had the option to bring Lyanna's remains to Winterfell).

Pray tell, if you can, what Ned's motive to do this could possibly have been. To illustrate with some imaginary dialogue:

 That you so distort what I've said leads me to want to just dismiss it. However, I have said that the way Ned treats the bodies of all the dead, both his friends and opponents - and Lyanna's body as well - all show Ned's need to be respectful of the dead. One does not take on the task of build eight cairns if one does not feel the need for respect towards those who have died.

Ned's motive is simply to treat the dead with as much honor and respect as he can, and to get on with the next tasks ahead - taking Dawn to the Daynes and returning Lyanna's bones to Winterfell. I also suspect the heavily woven into all of his plans is how best to protect his newborn nephew's Identity from being exposed. His choice of when to return Dawn factor heavily into all of this, it seems to me.

2 hours ago, JNR said:

If Lyanna wasn't there, this entire problem disappears. That is, Ned buried all the corpses at the TOJ, no exceptions.

And the reason he had the option to move Lyanna back to Winterfell is that she died a different place -- somewhere her remains could be treated for travel.  So the above situation would never arise.  In fact, she could have died at Starfall.

That her remains could be treated at the tower or nearby or elsewhere has already been dealt with, so the idea of Starfall as the place to deal with the problem of her decaying body is never a factor. What Lady Dustin might think about Ned not bringing his bones home, I really doubt in figured into Ned's thinking at the time.

2 hours ago, JNR said:

Well, I'm more interested in GRRM's when asked about that dream:

Seems like he could have said nothing, but this was his choice instead.

My interpretation of the dream is that what Martin want us to focus on is what questions Ned has for the Kingsguard, and what he thinks their answers to his question would be or were. Ned is asking question fourteen years after the events that he still doesn't know the answers to. Martin wants us ask those questions ourselves.

 

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11 hours ago, Lord Varys said:

Oh, come on, I specify what I meant by that sentence immediately thereafter:

Proper textual evidence is not hearsay. There is also textual evidence that Sansa Stark slew Joffrey Baratheon and transformed into a winged wolf, just as there is textual evidence that Stannis Baratheon controlled the boar that killed Robert Baratheon via skinchanging.

We usually don't cite this 'textual evidence' as textual evidence when discussing those topics, do we?

Ned talks about Lyanna's death to Robert and then he remembers her death, but he never actually confirms that he promised her to bring her back home. The author sets the stage that a first-time reader interprets the passage in such a way - Lyanna was dying, Ned talked to her, and he promised her to bring her body home - but with what we learn later it is exceedingly unlikely that the question of Lyanna's final resting place ever came up in that conversation.

Especially if Lyanna actually fell in love with Rhaegar and married him and knew he was dead when she died, too, it would be rather odd that she would have wanted to be dumped (anonymously) into the Stark crypts like a maiden who died before her marriage. Instead, one assumes, she would have wished to rest beside her husband - which would have been on Dragonstone, where all the Targaryens (and presumably also their non-sibling spouses) are interred. That is confirmed basically for all the Targaryen kings and queens up to the Dance (aside from Alyssa Velaryon who was buried at Storm's End, with her second husband's family).

But as I said above already - my point is not to claim Lyanna did not ask for that or that Ned did not promise it. My point is that it is just FACTUALLY WRONG to claim we know she asked and he made such a promise. Because we don't. Structurally this is exactly the same mistake as claiming that we 'know' that Jon Snow is Ned's son - because we have textual evidence for that, too, and people also believe that this is true.

It was always odd to interpret the above scene in such a way. Because Lyanna is very afraid in Ned's memory there, so what is this about? Is this Lyanna woman supposed to be so superstitious that she could only think about her proper burial place when she was dying? Most likely not, as later chapters indicate. But I recall that I noted this oddity during my first read and thought that this was strange.

We know nothing, Lord Varys. But George does!

Of course we don't know anything for a certainty in a book of fiction. Our dear author may change it all by the ending. My point is only that in our attempt to come to some knowledge on the points at hand we cannot dismiss textual evidence that points one way just because we decide to downplay it for whatever momentary reason. In short, It is FACTUALLY WRONG to say there is no textual evidence when there is.

If you actually want to argue that Lyanna did not want to be buried in Winterfell, we can have a discussion about the evidence. I don't think you really do.

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Ned is one of the only witnesses, probably the lone witness, to Lyanna's final moments and words. Ned is speaking as a witness, not as someone who heard a rumor or speculation and is passing it on. He experienced the moment. He is the authority on the moment. To compare that scenario to people making up or passing on rumors of things they didn't witness or experience is an absurd non-starter. If you want to argue that Ned might have reason to lie about or hide some information from Robert, by all means say that. And if you think there is actual evidence that Ned did, or had reason to, lie about Lyanna's request, by all means provide it. Because Ned is stating this rather than remembering this, we can perhaps leave a little crack open for the possibility that Ned made this story up for some reason, and Lyanna didn't actually make this request. Without evidence or a hint, the possibility has nowhere near the weight of Ned's explicit statement, and it's ridiculous to expect people to entertain walls of text arguing otherwise.

Edited by Bael's Bastard

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"She WANTED to come home, to rest beside Brandon and Father"

Funny. One would almost say that Ned did exactly what Lyanna had wanted. And unless he didn't respond to her request at all, which a normal person would never do their dying loved one, his response was affirmative. And if you say "yes" to a request to do something, then you are promising to do as asked, even if you never say "I promise".

 

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I haven't read any good explanation why Arthur Dayne's body ended up in a cairn at the ToJ and was not brought to his family at Starfall where Ned is riding to next to return Arthur's sword.

It just doesn't make sense to me.

Also, if I were the Dayne family and Arthur was the best fighter in Westeros at that time, plus he was wielding Dawn, and neither Ned nor any of his friends was known as an exceptional fighter, it might have questioned whether Arthur died in a fight or wasn't shot with an arrow. Showing a body might clarify that.

Ned is held in Honor by the Daynes despite killing Arthur, it cannot be only because he returned Dawn, can it?

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On 3/14/2019 at 9:30 AM, Bael's Bastard said:

But even if we assume that they were connected, and that Lord Whent staged the tourney because of something Ser Oswell conveyed or relayed to him from Rhaegar, neither that nor the friendship between Rhaegar and Ser Arthur proves or even really supports the idea that Lord Dayne would risk the wrath of his liege lord of House Martell and/or his king Aerys by publicly or secretly welcoming the then-disappeared Rhaegar and his kidnapped hostage/mistress into Starfall. Nor does it prove or support the idea that Rhaegar would have considered it a safe place to go or bring Lyanna under the circumstances.

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Starfall is the castle of one of the principal houses sworn to House Martell, which by that point was highly pissed off at Rhaegar's treatment of Elia. That's a risky place to take the kidnapped hostage you had infamously crowned queen of love and beauty at the Harrenhal Tourney months earlier.

There’s an assumption here, that I would like to address.

You claim that fostering Lyanna, who you claim to be Rhaegar’s “mistress”, would risk the wrath of House Martell.  And that House Martell was pissed off at Rhaegar’s treatment of Lyanna.  I’m not sure that this is corroborated anywhere in the books.

But assuming that House Martell is angry that Rhaegar ran off with Lyanna further dishonoring Elia, like Rhaegar did at the Harrenhal tourney, wouldn’t it be the utter height of folly for Rhaegar to put Lyanna in the Prince’s Pass, directly in the path of House Martell’s army? Especially for the length of time it would take a pregnancy to occur?

But of course we’re assuming that House Martell would be angry over Rhaegar taking Lyanna.  And we haven’t really been given any indication that either Lyanna’s “crowning” or even her abduction/seduction angered the Martells.  Naturally, they would be , if Rhaegar’s actions to Lyanna were thought to be the actions of someone spurning Elia and turning to another woman.  What I’m suggesting, however, is that the Martells may have been privy to and supportive of Rhaegar’s ulterior motive, bringing about the Prince that was Promised prophecy, and the belief that Lyanna’s child was a necessary component of this prophecy.

The Worldbook gives us an indication as to who may have been in Rhaegar’s inner circle:

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Prince Rhaegar’s support came from the younger men at court, including Lord Jon Connington, Ser Myles Mooton of Maidenpool, and Ser Richard Lonmouth.  The Dornishmen who had come to court with the Princess Elia were in the prince’s confidence as well, particularly Prince Lewyn Martell, Elia’s uncle and a Sworn Brother of the Kingsguard.  But the most formidable of all Rhaegar’s friends and allies in King’s Landing was surely Ser Arthur Dayne, the Sword of the Morning.

So it seems that Rhaegar confided in the Dornishmen who came with Elia to court.  Specifically mentioned is Lewyn Martell, but my guess is that Oberyn may have also have been in Rhaegar’s confidence.  And Oberyn was notably present at the Harrenhal tourney as well.

And Rhaegar seems fairly open to telling Elia about his belief in prophecy and the role that their son is supposed to play:

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“Aegon,” he said to a woman nursing a newborn babe in a great wooden bed. “What better name for a king?”

“Will you make a song for him?” the woman asked.

“He has a song,” the man replied. “He is the prince that was promised, and his is the song of ice and fire.” He looked up when he said it and his eyes met Dany’s, and it seemed as if he saw her standing there beyond the door. “There must be one more,” he said, though whether he was speaking to her or the woman in the bed she could not say. “The dragon has three heads.” He went to the window seat, picked up a harp, and ran his fingers lightly over its silvery strings.

Within the conversation appears to be the acknowledgment that their son is only one piece of the puzzle.  That there needs to be one more piece.  Presumably Elia has already been told that she can’t have another child.  So if Rhaegar is this open with his wife Elia, it stands to reason, that if he believes a third child is necessary, he doesn’t seem to be concerned about the wraith of the Martells if that third child is to be born by Lyanna.  So if Elia is in one the plan, it stands to reason that her uncle Lewyn, and possibly her brother Oberyn, may have been privy to it as well.

So I would suggest, that fostering Lyanna might not have risked House Martell’s wraith, in fact House Martell, or members within, may have taken an active part in Lyanna’s “abduction”.  After all Rhaegar rode out with six companions from King’s Landing.  Can we assume that out of these six companions, at least one of them wasn’t a Martell?

As to risking Aerys’ wraith, that’s a more difficulty nut to crack.  I don’t know if we can assume that to be the case, however.  If kidnapping and fostering Lyanna would have incurred Aerys wraith, the person who would have received the brunt of this wraith, would be Rhaegar.  Yet we don’t really get any indication of this, quite the opposite actually.  Of course Aerys was also fully aware of the Prince that was Promised prophecy as well, especially since he was married to his wife specifically in the purpose of bringing this prophecy about.

So returning to your original point, I don’t see that fostering Lyanna in Starfall would have incurred the wraith of either the King or House Martell.  In fact quite, the opposite, I would argue that Lord Dayne probably believed that this actions would have been approved by both parties.  

Interestingly enough, if the Martells were a part of this, Doran is probably too cautious to have fostered Lyanna in Sunspear or the Water Gardens.  But Lyanna being fostered in Starfall, a remote location in Dorne, fairly separated from the rest of Dorne by the Red Mountains, would have given him plausible deniability that he was aware of it.   

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On 3/14/2019 at 1:59 PM, Ygrain said:

/scratches her head/ Funny how after all those years, the debate is still running in the same circles.

Lyanna made a deathbed wish to be buried at Winterfell, so Ned had no choice but to come up with some solution. However, applying such a solution to a single body, and not a particularly big one, is definitely not the same as solving the issue of transporting eight more bodies of fully grown men.

To transport a body, you either have to find some means to preserve the soft tissues, or deflesh it, as you definitely don't want to travel around with a decaying body leaking fluid and attracting flies, not to mention that you have to assess the security risks, depending whether Ned was travelling along with newborn Jon or not - carrying around you deceased sister's body and a baby would be a dead giveaway (sorry for the pun). And even if you are lucky enough not to be noticed on the way, the Silent Sisters are another security risk. How sure can you be that they will remain silent when offered that they might get out of the order and live the rest of their lives in luxury, that they will not convey the information about a young woman who had given birth prior her death?

So, unless Ned is willing to take the risks of transporting Lyanna's body to the Silent Sisters, he has to deal with her body on his own. To obtain enough of some preserving medium (alcohol, vinegar, salt etc.) and a container, he would need to reach some civilisation, so again, security risk and the body decaying if he doesn't find what he needs soon enough. Plus, the problem of transport - the burden becomes too big and heavy to be carried by a horse, you would need a cart.

So, the other option, defleshing. We know from Barristan that it's done by boiling via the Silent Sisters, or bugs eating the flesh away, or cremation. Bugs take time, which Ned doesn't have, and I don't think he would be willing to leave Lyanna's body behind, anyway. So, we're finally getting to the fastest, cleanest, and most logical solution - cremation. Gather fuel, burn the body, collect the remains. Can be carried around in an urn or satchel. ToJ is not in a desert area, it already has some fuel supply for cooking and washing, there may even be some furniture, straw or hay. Gathering enough fuel for a single cremation shouldn't be that difficult even if you are short of manpower and time.

Now, take all those troubles that you have with arranging Lyanna's body for transport and multiply that by five (or eight, since the KG definitely deserve the honorable treatment, too). Even the simplest solution, the cremation, becomes a problem because of the amount of fuel you need. There is simply no way all the nine bodies could get the same treatment, so Ned has to prioritize. He has to do something about Lyanna because that's what he promised, and gives the others a decent burial. Everybody who is not Lady Dustin seems to understand that there are circumstances when you can only do so much. Ned brings back the horse because the bloody beast only needs the same treatment that Ned has to give his own horse, anyway, walks on its own and doesn't leak body fluids or lose pieces of flesh along the way.

The mental gymnastics you’re going through to try and make sense of this is really amusing.  Let me suggest that the reason that this topic keeps cropping up is that the traditional narrative is fundamentally flawed.  And the traditional narrative consists of Lyanna dying in the tower of joy.  A narrative’s who’s only basis is Ned’s dream.

GRRM has certainly invited you to come to this conclusion.  But if you really start examining the facts everything starts to fall apart.

So Ned can cremate his sister, but only has “fuel” just for her?  There’s a damn bed in this watchtower, so burn that thing.  You could probably get at least a couple more bodies on it.  

And then rather then get baby Jon and Lyanna’s blackened, charred bones, back to safety, you instead make a journey through the mountain, in enemy territory, just so you can get a sword back to House Dayne?

There is a much simpler, more elegant solution.  Ned had to get back to Starfall because Lyanna was at Starfall.  Ned treated Lyanna’s remains diffently than the remains of the Kingsguards and his companions, because Lyanna was never at the tower of joy. Lyanna was at a place where her remains could be properly cared for and transported to Winterfell. 

Edited by Frey family reunion

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4 hours ago, Frey family reunion said:

There’s an assumption here, that I would like to address.

You claim that fostering Lyanna, who you claim to be Rhaegar’s “mistress”, would risk the wrath of House Martell.  And that House Martell was pissed off at Rhaegar’s treatment of Lyanna.  I’m not sure that this is corroborated anywhere in the books.

But assuming that House Martell is angry that Rhaegar ran off with Lyanna further dishonoring Elia, like Rhaegar did at the Harrenhal tourney, wouldn’t it be the utter height of folly for Rhaegar to put Lyanna in the Prince’s Pass, directly in the path of House Martell’s army? Especially for the length of time it would take a pregnancy to occur?

But of course we’re assuming that House Martell would be angry over Rhaegar taking Lyanna.  And we haven’t really been given any indication that either Lyanna’s “crowning” or even her abduction/seduction angered the Martells.  Naturally, they would be , if Rhaegar’s actions to Lyanna were thought to be the actions of someone spurning Elia and turning to another woman.  What I’m suggesting, however, is that the Martells may have been privy to and supportive of Rhaegar’s ulterior motive, bringing about the Prince that was Promised prophecy, and the belief that Lyanna’s child was a necessary component of this prophecy.

The author has made this clear. I'll have to think on if there are any explicit reference to the Rhaegar/Martell brother split after he takes Lyanna, but it is very clear it exists in Martin's remarks.

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The Baratheon Brothers

First. When Cersei and Ned talked in the godswood in aGoT, she mentioned Jon, and wondered who his mother was, (paraphrasing) "...Some peasant wife you raped, while her holdfast burned?" This indicates that there were fightings in Dorne when Ned went there to get Lyanna back. But I thought the Martells stayed out of the war, and that Ned went there when the war was all over. So: did Ned take an army with him into Dorne, or not?

Ned's army did not accompany him to Dorne, no. There were no battles in Dorne during Robert's Rebellion, though doubtless there were minor skirmishes along the borders. But it's not entirely correct that the Martells stayed out of the war. Rhaegar had Dornish troops with him on the Trident, under the command of Prince Lewyn of the Kingsguard. However, the Dornishmen did not support him as strongly as they might have, in part because of anger at his treatment of Elia, in part because of Prince Doran's innate caution. Cersei's line reflects no more than a desire to wound, to say something nasty to get a rise out of Ned. (SSM1046) bold emphasis added

As important as this is about how the Martell's reacted to Rhaegar's "treatment of Elia" we cannot forget the fundamental dangers the Lyanna affair plays with Dornish ambitions. It raises the question of if Rhaegar will put Elia aside when he reaches the throne. It raises the question if Rhaegar will follow custom and have Aegon as his heir or have a child of Lyanna succeed him to the throne. The Martells have every reason to be concerned about these questions, even if Elia herself is not. Of course, all of those concerns regarding a future under Rhaegar's rule come to naught with Robert's hammer blow on the Trident and Tywin's murders in King's Landing.

Edited by SFDanny

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5 hours ago, alienarea said:

I haven't read any good explanation why Arthur Dayne's body ended up in a cairn at the ToJ and was not brought to his family at Starfall where Ned is riding to next to return Arthur's sword.

It just doesn't make sense to me.

Also, if I were the Dayne family and Arthur was the best fighter in Westeros at that time, plus he was wielding Dawn, and neither Ned nor any of his friends was known as an exceptional fighter, it might have questioned whether Arthur died in a fight or wasn't shot with an arrow. Showing a body might clarify that.

Ned is held in Honor by the Daynes despite killing Arthur, it cannot be only because he returned Dawn, can it?

Care to explain?

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