Jump to content
Victar Pyke

Conjectures on Robert Arryn’s Paternity

Recommended Posts

This one just kinda came to me whilst reading (and reflecting on) one of the Alayne chapters.

Given that Lysa is known to have disliked Jon to some extent, and apparently maintained a close relationship to Petyr for a long time, possible even an intimate one, what if little Robert’s father is none other than lord Littlefinger?

Robert’s eyes are blue, his hair is black, and he is small.

Lysa’s eyes are blue. Petyr’s hair is “dark”, and his nickname comes from his small stature (at least as a child).

Admittedly a little thin on the ground, but it feels in line with the characters, and it would make sense to never be confirmed in-universe too (Lysa might not have been able to know for sure, and Petyr is to good at “the game” to admit it, even if he was certain).

It would also make his role as Protector of the Vale and Robert’s (legal) stepfather neat symbolism.

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites
9 minutes ago, Victar Pyke said:

This one just kinda came to me whilst reading (and reflecting on) one of the Alayne chapters.

Given that Lysa is known to have disliked Jon to some extent, and apparently maintained a close relationship to Petyr for a long time, possible even an intimate one, what if little Robert’s father is none other than lord Littlefinger?

Robert’s eyes are blue, his hair is black, and he is small.

Lysa’s eyes are blue. Petyr’s hair is “dark”, and his nickname comes from his small stature (at least as a child).

Admittedly a little thin on the ground, but it feels in line with the characters, and it would make sense to never be confirmed in-universe too (Lysa might not have been able to know for sure, and Petyr is to good at “the game” to admit it, even if he was certain).

It would also make his role as Protector of the Vale and Robert’s (legal) stepfather neat symbolism.

Sweetrobin's hair is not black.

""Come to Mother, my sweet one." She straightened his bedclothes and fussed with his fine brown hair."

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites
8 minutes ago, Ser Leftwich said:

Sweetrobin's hair is not black.

""Come to Mother, my sweet one." She straightened his bedclothes and fussed with his fine brown hair."

Um, okay? My point still stands, I guess. “Dark” is also commonly used to describe many shades of brown hair. And besides, Jon’s hair was blonde (according to TWoW Alayne I’s description of ser Harrold, which is subject to change, admittedly).

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

Lysa was being pretty candid with LF before she got pushed out of the Moon Door. If she mentioned her abortion, she probably would have mentioned having an actual, living son with Littlefinger during her breakdown. 

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites
Posted (edited)
10 minutes ago, Vaith said:

Lysa was being pretty candid with LF before she got pushed out of the Moon Door. If she mentioned her abortion, she probably would have mentioned having an actual, living son with Littlefinger during her breakdown. 

Well yes, but that was when she had only ever “done it” with him, during her stay in King’s Landing she probably slept with Jon, and possible also with Petyr, so I’m fairly certain she wouldn’t know for sure either.

Besides, I did title this “conjectures”, tell me if I’m using the word incorrectly, because I hate using words incorrectly.

Edited by Victar Pyke

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

And GRRM has been tight-lipped on his eye color, except that they are large. He’s got a decent chance that they’re blue, since Jon Arryn and Lysa Tully have blue eyes. Littlefinger has gray-green ones.

I wonder why GRRM has kept mum about his eye color...

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

Its one of the less outlandish theories out in the fandom, but one which i dont see can ever be confirmed or disproved at this point. It will remain a point fans can debate long after the series ends

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

It's possible that Robert inherited his brown hair from Lysa who had red-brown or auburn hair. Seen this in real life. GRRM certainly wants us to wonder about it as he knows that giving Robert those specific qualities along side their long-term affair would inevitably lead to that speculation. Agree that his parentage won't be confirmed either way (no Maury) and as far as the Vale is concerned, I'm not sure it even matters. 

I think its value is more at a character level. If Robert is LF's, LF likely is aware of at least the possibility and yet seems to have no hesitation in killing him to further his plans making LF possibly even worse than we already knew. And here we have Alayne, his own bastard "child" with whom he's quite infatuated. But LF told us how it works: "only Cat". So we should ask if LF has a line where he'd sacrifice his other child Alayne should he be forced to choose between her and his master plans, whatever those might be. 

 

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

Are we even sure that Littlefinger was in King's Landing when Sweetrobin was conceived? He may have still been in Gulltown at that time while Lysa and Jon Arryn were in King's Landing.

When Tyrion meets with Littlefinger after becoming Hand, he thinks about Littlefinger's history:

Quote

Ten years ago, Jon Arryn had given him a minor sinecure in customs, where Lord Petyr had soon distinguished himself by bringing in three times as much as any of the king’s other collectors. King Robert had been a prodigious spender. A man like Petyr Baelish, who had a gift for rubbing two golden dragons together to breed a third, was invaluable to his Hand. Littlefinger’s rise had been arrow-swift. Within three years of his coming to court, he was master of coin and a member of the small council, and today the crown’s revenues were ten times what they had been under his beleaguered predecessor . . . though the crown’s debts had grown vast as well. A master juggler was Petyr Baelish.

Little Robert Arryn is 6 years old when the books start - probably 7 when Tyrion is thinking these thoughts - meaning that he would have been conceived about 8 years before this while Littlefinger was first given a post in Gulltown about 10 years before. So he would have had just the 2 years to distinguish himself enough to be called to court by Jon Arryn.

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites
5 hours ago, Syl of Syl said:

Are we even sure that Littlefinger was in King's Landing when Sweetrobin was conceived? He may have still been in Gulltown at that time while Lysa and Jon Arryn were in King's Landing.

When Tyrion meets with Littlefinger after becoming Hand, he thinks about Littlefinger's history:

Little Robert Arryn is 6 years old when the books start - probably 7 when Tyrion is thinking these thoughts - meaning that he would have been conceived about 8 years before this while Littlefinger was first given a post in Gulltown about 10 years before. So he would have had just the 2 years to distinguish himself enough to be called to court by Jon Arryn.

He was *on the small council*, within 3 years of his *coming to court*, as in that he became master of coin less than 3 years after becoming a prominent member at court, and given that Jon Arryn seems to have spent most of his Handship in KL, pretty sure that it’s at least a possibility.

9 hours ago, Angel Eyes said:

And GRRM has been tight-lipped on his eye color, except that they are large. He’s got a decent chance that they’re blue, since Jon Arryn and Lysa Tully have blue eyes. Littlefinger has gray-green ones.

I wonder why GRRM has kept mum about his eye color...

Pretty sure I read somewhere that he’s got big, *blue*, runny eyes, but I’m unsure so take it with a heap of salt.

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

I doubt GRRM will just end the line of one of the great houses like that, he's Jon's son, Lysa is probably pregnant by the time LF wen't to King's Landing, I don't know about the timeline, and Littlefinger is not stupid to have a relationship with Lysa in the Red Keep since Varys will know.

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

We know that Lysa had a traumatic abortion in the past and it's quite feasible that complications from that coupled with either LF's small stature or Jon's reproductive history could have resulted in the small, sickly Robert Arryn. I get the feeling that GRRM has left this deliberately ambiguous and vague to keep readers guessing.

Personally, I lean more towards Jon Arryn being the father - mainly based on Lysa's moon door speech as already mentioned but also the fact that LF had absolutely no desire to sleep with Lysa, and if he could have kept her on the hook whilst refraining from intimacy I'm sure he would have (and I don't doubt that he had the ability to sweet talk her around!)

Having said that, I very much like what Petyr being the father would do for the story and character development and I'd like for it to be true.

I'm very much aligned with this :

On 4/17/2019 at 2:14 AM, Lollygag said:

I think its value is more at a character level. If Robert is LF's, LF likely is aware of at least the possibility and yet seems to have no hesitation in killing him to further his plans making LF possibly even worse than we already knew.

 

And also the idea that while Jon was uncovering the truth about Robert's supposed offspring, he had no idea about his own 'son'.

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites
Posted (edited)
2 hours ago, Shara said:

And also the idea that while Jon was uncovering the truth about Robert's supposed offspring, he had no idea about his own 'son'. 

Good line. Love your nickname, too.

Edited by Lady Winter Rose

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

Wouldn't Archmaester Edgerran's treatise on the swaddling of infants help with this? Robert was at his mother's teats until he was 8 or 9 I think? Odd a child should be breastfeeding to such an age?  I do wonder if he sucked them both at the same time or separately? I picture him somehow nesting between the two, gathering wood from thatched rooftops, hopefully he doesn't fall and crack like an egg because he missed the water by the tree. Almost makes me want to take a copper arrow, cross my fingers and shoot. I am not a sellsword looking for pennies on the dollar but I should in look into it. As I wish not be a thief, only to serve. Did I spell that right? Something about the (ie or ei) that always give trouble when writing. Translation is lost when talking to crows, it reminds me of Pate and the Alchemist when he stole the key. This substance they speak of, will in the end only burn themselves. These shifty alchemists, transmuting one from another, if they're not careful it will consume them and all the wisdom they have. Funny thing about transmuting, you could almost say bees transmute pollen from flower to flower, do wasps also? Its all so vey daunting being a lone wolf searching for a pack, trying to find the needle in a haystack. It's like a dagger to my heart and as sharp as a dragons tooth. Funny thing happens when you accept hearing the voices in head, you awaken. Wiping away all the baggage of information you were breastfed. I have my cornerstone to build my castle on. Every castle though needs builders for I am just a humble servant aware of my deficiencies. I do have statues I could build perhaps, in honor fertility. I picture a wolf with six nipples, perhaps in the center of my castle, lactating its mothersmilk down six whitewalled aquaducts that feed my vast empire. Some even might say, giant empire. But these are the dreams of a child, a blind boy searching for stars in his eyes. I wish only to read of far away places and see beyond the stars. It is the darkness I feel much like Jon dreaming of the Winterfell crypts. Three dreams was it? I really should look into these memories, the mind has a sense of remembering what is important and filtering out the trash....Ah I forget what I was trying to convey, sorry I have no clue who his father is and sorry for the rant. Forget everything I said, it's quicker than me deleting it. It was the image of breasts maybe that got me distracted.

 

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites
8 hours ago, Maester Crypt said:

Wouldn't Archmaester Edgerran's treatise on the swaddling of infants help with this? Robert was at his mother's teats until he was 8 or 9 I think? Odd a child should be breastfeeding to such an age?  I do wonder if he sucked them both at the same time or separately? I picture him somehow nesting between the two, gathering wood from thatched rooftops, hopefully he doesn't fall and crack like an egg because he missed the water by the tree. Almost makes me want to take a copper arrow, cross my fingers and shoot. I am not a sellsword looking for pennies on the dollar but I should in look into it. As I wish not be a thief, only to serve. Did I spell that right? Something about the (ie or ei) that always give trouble when writing. Translation is lost when talking to crows, it reminds me of Pate and the Alchemist when he stole the key. This substance they speak of, will in the end only burn themselves. These shifty alchemists, transmuting one from another, if they're not careful it will consume them and all the wisdom they have. Funny thing about transmuting, you could almost say bees transmute pollen from flower to flower, do wasps also? Its all so vey daunting being a lone wolf searching for a pack, trying to find the needle in a haystack. It's like a dagger to my heart and as sharp as a dragons tooth. Funny thing happens when you accept hearing the voices in head, you awaken. Wiping away all the baggage of information you were breastfed. I have my cornerstone to build my castle on. Every castle though needs builders for I am just a humble servant aware of my deficiencies. I do have statues I could build perhaps, in honor fertility. I picture a wolf with six nipples, perhaps in the center of my castle, lactating its mothersmilk down six whitewalled aquaducts that feed my vast empire. Some even might say, giant empire. But these are the dreams of a child, a blind boy searching for stars in his eyes. I wish only to read of far away places and see beyond the stars. It is the darkness I feel much like Jon dreaming of the Winterfell crypts. Three dreams was it? I really should look into these memories, the mind has a sense of remembering what is important and filtering out the trash....Ah I forget what I was trying to convey, sorry I have no clue who his father is and sorry for the rant. Forget everything I said, it's quicker than me deleting it. It was the image of breasts maybe that got me distracted.

 

Hmmm... Is Petyr a breast man? 

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites
Posted (edited)
22 hours ago, Lady Winter Rose said:

Good line. Love your nickname, too.

Thank You :)

 

The nickname is a bit of a family joke. My name is Sarah, but the traditional Welsh spelling is Sara without the 'h'.  The older generation of my family (native Welsh speakers) are confused as heck about that additional 'h'. Over the years I've consistently had birthday / Christmas cards addressed to either Shara or Sarha. They know there's an 'h' but have absolutely no idea where to put it, so they just seem to randomly guess :D

Edited by Shara

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites
Posted (edited)

In my opinion, Robert Arryn was born in second half of 291.

According to the Wikia, he was born in 292. It was based on this calculations:

Quote

Robert Arryn

Birth

In 298 AC, Robert Arryn is 6 years old.[36][37][38] Catelyn Tully remarks how she had last seen her sister Lysa, Robert's mother, 5 years ago. Robert had been less than a year old.[37] With Robert Arryn being less than a year old in 293 AC,[37] and with him being 6 years old halfway through 298 AC,[36][37] and 8 in early 300 AC,[39][40] gives the following option:

  • 8 in 300 AC gives:
    • 8 turning 9, placing his birth in 291 AC
    • 7 turning 8, placing his birth in 292 AC
  • 6 in 298 AC gives:
    • 6 turning 7, placing his birth in 291 AC
    • 5 turning 6, placing his birth in 292 AC
  • Less than 1 in 293 AC gives:
    • Born in 293 AC
    • Turning 1 in 293 AC, placing his birth in 292 AC

With 292 AC as the only overlapping year, Robert Arryn was thus born in 292 AC.

It seems to me, that those calculations could be incorrect.

Information from the books, about Robert's age:

  • ""Six, and sickly, and Lord of the Eyrie, gods have mercy," the king swore."" - AGOT, Eddard I;
  • "Her uncle's voice was troubled. "Lord Robert," he sighed. "Six years old, sickly, and prone to weep if you take his dolls away. Jon Arryn's trueborn heir, by all the gods, yet there are some who say he is too weak to sit his father's seat."" - AGOT, Catelyn VI;
  • "It had been five years, in truth; five cruel years, for Lysa."
  • " "This is your aunt Catelyn, baby. My sister, Lady Stark. Do you remember?" The boy glanced at her blankly. "I think so," he said, blinking, though he had been less than a year old the last time Catelyn had seen him."
  • "She remembered her own baby, three-year-old Rickon, half the age of this boy and five times as fierce."
  • Robert's age in Appendixes: 6 in AGOT, 8 in ACOK, 8 in ASOS, 8 in AFFC, 8 in ADWD.
  • Rickon's age in Appendixes: 3 in AGOT, 4 in ACOK, 4 in ASOS, 4 in AFFC, 4 in ADWD.

Events in AGOT are happening in 298 and a very early 299; ACOK in 299; ASOS and AFFC in second half of 299 and a very early 300 (Joffrey's wedding, first day of year 300 AC, is depicted in chapters 59-61 of ASOS, and in that book there are 80 chapters, so 3/4 of that book was taking place in 299, and a last 1/4 in 300); ADWD in 300, and the timeframe of this book goes further into 300 than AFFC, but not further than first half of 300 (because by the time of Dany's last chapter in ADWD, her 16th birthday hasn't happened yet, and her birthday is not earlier than May).

Combination of all this information gives us this:

  • By the time of King's arrival to Winterfell, Rickon's birthday of that year has already happened (he was born in early 295). Rickon is half of Robert's age. In Appendixes when Rickon is 3, Robert is 6, and when Rickon is 4, Robert is 8. In 298, at the time of Catelyn's visit at the Eyrie, Robert is still 6, and Rickon is several months past 3, but not yet 3 and a half, because when Rickon will be 3 years and 6 months old, at that time Robert will turn 7, because he is twice older than Rickon. Thus Rickon is 3.5 years younger than Robert, and Robert's birthday is 6 months after Rickon's birthday.
  • If Rickon was born in January, then Robert was born in July; Ri-February - Ro-August; Ri-March - Ro-September; Ri-April - Ro-October; Ri-May - Ro-November; Ri-June - Ro-December.
  • Last time, when Catelyn saw Robert, he was less than 1 year old.

For example, if he was born in July 291, then last time she saw him was in June of 292 (or some other month before July), and her current visit at the Eyrie is happening before June (or before that some other month), in May or April or March of 298.

If he was born in August 291, last visit was in July 292 or earlier (prior his birthday of that year), current visit in June or earlier (the month of her current visit in 298, is earlier in a year, than the month of her last visit in 292).

Born in September 291, last visit in August 292 or earlier, current visit in July 298 or earlier.

Born in October 291, last visit in September 292 or earlier, current visit in August 298 or earlier.

Born in November 291, last visit in October 292 or earlier, current visit in September 298 or earlier.

Born in December 291, last visit in November 292 or earlier, current visit in October 298 or earlier.

So since Catelyn saw Robert previous time, passed less than 6 full years, passed 5 years (and months, anywhere between 1 and 11 months).

  • "five cruel years, for Lysa" in which Catelyn didn't saw her sister is 293, 294, 295, 296, 297 (or 292-293, 293-294, 294-295, 295-296, 296-297). Catelyn saw Lysa in 292 and 298, so this two years are not one of those five years, in which they haven't seen each other (297-298 is already a 6th year, but in 298 they met earlier than the month of their separation in 292).

Robert was born in second half of 291. So he was conceived either in late 290, or in early 291.

Edit: Robert was 8 both in 299 (in appendixes of ACOK, ASOS, AFFC, ADWD) and 8 in 300 (in ASOS Sansa VI, when Lysa arrived to the Fingers, she said, that Robert is 8. Robert is 8 after Lysa's death, in AFFC Sansa I). Eight years old in both 299 and 300, means, that his 8th birthday happened in 299, which means, that he was born in 291. Also, if he was 8 in 299 and in 300, then he wasn't 8 in 298, and because it is known, that in 298 he was 6, it also means, that later in 298 he turned 7, which again means, that he was born in 291.

At certain point in time, in 298, during Catelyn's visit to the Eyrie, Robert is twice older than Rickon, but he's not going to be twice older in next month, same as he wasn't twice older in previous month. So Catelyn's visit in 298 takes place in time-slot, when Robert, who is 6 years and several months old, is twice older than Rickon, who at that time is 3 years and several months old. Thus, it's possible to calculate, when exactly Catelyn visited the Eyrie.

It seems, that I made a small mistake in my previous calculation - age difference between Robert and Rickon is not 3 years and 6 months, it's 3 years and 5.5 months. At the time of Cat's visit, Robert, who is twice older, is 6 years and 11 months or 83 months old, and Rickon is 3 years and 5 and a half months old (or 41.5 months old). Though I could be wrong about this part. But it's definite, that Robert was born in 291, not in 292.

 

 

Back to OP:

"Ten years ago, Jon Arryn had given him a minor sinecure in customs, where Lord Petyr had soon distinguished himself by bringing in three times as much as any of the king's other collectors." - ACOK, Tyrion IV. This scene is happening in first half of 299, so ten years ago was in first half of 289, that's when Petyr joined court (because that "minor sinecure in customs" is something like a post in a "Ministry of Economics" of 7K, his post was something like a tax-collector).

"Littlefinger's rise had been arrow-swift. Within three years of his coming to court, he was master of coin and a member of the small council" - "within three years" means, that since his appointment to court has passed less than 3 full years. So, first half of 289 - first half of 290 - 1rst year, first half of 290 - first half of 291 - 2nd year, first half of 291 - first half of 292 - 3rd year. Thus, Petyr became Master of Coin in time-slot between first half of 291 and first half of 292. And Robert was conceived either in late 290, or in early 291.

To me it looks like after "Two babes stillborn, twice as many miscarriages" (AGOT, Calelyn VI) of Jon Arryn's children, Lysa got pregnant from Petyr, and finally gave birth to a living child. And, to reward Petyr for that, convinced her husband to appoint Petyr as a Master of Coin. And since then she continued their affair.

This - "The Grand Maester nodded. "I recall now, the widow is sister to your own noble wife. If an old man may be forgiven his blunt speech, let me say that grief can derange even the strongest and most disciplined of minds, and the Lady Lysa was never that. Since her last stillbirth, she has seen enemies in every shadow, and the death of her lord husband left her shattered and lost." (AGOT, Eddard V) - looks to me, that after her last stillbirth, she began an affair with Petyr, and that's the real reason, why since then she was behaving like a paranoid - because she was afraid, that someone will find out about her ongoing infidelity.

And this looks like she's admitting, that Robert is Petyr's son, because Jon Arryn couldn't give her pleasure, and couldn't give her children, his seed was old and weak and his breath was stinking, while Petyr's breath was always fresh and, if we will continue analogy, his seed was strong, and he gave Lysa her long awaited baby -

"Petyr's breath is always fresh . . . he was the first man I ever kissed, you know. My father said he was too lowborn, but I knew how high he'd rise. Jon gave him the customs for Gulltown to please me, but when he increased the incomes tenfold my lord husband saw how clever he was and gave him other appointments, even brought him to King's Landing to be master of coin. That was hard, to see him every day and still be wed to that old cold man. Jon did his duty in the bedchamber, but he could no more give me pleasure than he could give me children. His seed was old and weak. All my babies died but Robert, three girls and two boys. All my sweet little babies dead, and that old man just went on and on with his stinking breath." ASOS, Sansa VI.

Jon kept having sex with her, kept going with his stinking breath/weak seed, even though all of his babies were non-viable, unlike Robert.

So, I think that it's highly likely, that the real father of Robert Arryn is actually Petyr Baelish.

Edited by Megorova

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

Create an account or sign in to comment

You need to be a member in order to leave a comment

Create an account

Sign up for a new account in our community. It's easy!

Register a new account

Sign in

Already have an account? Sign in here.

Sign In Now

×