Jump to content
Sign in to follow this  
Aryya Stark

LF Chewing Mint

Recommended Posts

Hi everyone. I have been inactive for a long time so my apologies in advance if this subject has been discussed before. I did a search but didn't find anything that specifically discusses this topic. I am rereading the novels and something is bothering me. GRRM constantly mentions LF chewing mint. In the beginning I didn't think much of it, but it keeps getting mentioned over and over again. I was just wondering if anyone has a theory about this. The only thing I can think of is he is trying to cover a smell or something.

 

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

Are you saying that whenever he wants to lie he chews mint? That that is how we know he is lying in a specific passage? Sorry for all the questions...I just want to keep a look out to what he is saying when he is chewing :)

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites
1 minute ago, FitzChivalry Fartseer said:

Dunno I just add it to the reasons why I think he is one of the creepiest motherfuckers who ever creeped

lol he is certainly very creepy 

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

There is so much lying (or underhanded behavior) in the books that I doubt it is signaled by one type of food. I have seen theories that Arbor Gold signals a lie or sapphires signal a lie. It's just too hard to pinpoint. (Not to mention, until we know how the books end and understand more of the secret origins and relationships among characters, we don't fully know who is lying.)

Mint is unique to Littlefinger, I think. I assumed that, as Master of Coin, there was wordplay on mint the plant and mint where coins are made. We are told more than once that Littlefinger can rub two dragons together to get another. I think there is another layer of meaning in this skill of Littlefinger's, which is always specifically mentioned in connection with the coins called gold dragons, never with silver stags or lesser coins.

In other words, the chewing of mint is a symbol of Littlefinger's secret participation in a Targaryen restoration plot. He is helping to get revenge on the key players of Robert's Rebellion. The mint symbolizes his making of "dragons" - promoting Targaryen revenge and restoration.

But fragrances are also important (does the mint aroma make Baelish a perfumed Seneschal?) and it is specifically his breath that is affected. Breathing symbolism is a big motif as we see in the various deaths by hanging or throat slitting, Joffrey's death, Cressen's death, the region called The Neck that separates the North from the rest of Westeros.

For more insight into the mint wordplay, I suspect we need to examine Manderly's offer to start up a mint to make coins for King Robb Stark in the North. 

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

I thought similiar when I read about it, especially when Lysa explains the details. I was watching for further clues but if I'm not wrong, it hasn't been mentioned again since the murder of Lysa, so there is that.

 

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites
1 hour ago, Seams said:

There is so much lying (or underhanded behavior) in the books that I doubt it is signaled by one type of food. I have seen theories that Arbor Gold signals a lie or sapphires signal a lie. It's just too hard to pinpoint. (Not to mention, until we know how the books end and understand more of the secret origins and relationships among characters, we don't fully know who is lying.)

Mint is unique to Littlefinger, I think. I assumed that, as Master of Coin, there was wordplay on mint the plant and mint where coins are made. We are told more than once that Littlefinger can rub two dragons together to get another. I think there is another layer of meaning in this skill of Littlefinger's, which is always specifically mentioned in connection with the coins called gold dragons, never with silver stags or lesser coins.

In other words, the chewing of mint is a symbol of Littlefinger's secret participation in a Targaryen restoration plot. He is helping to get revenge on the key players of Robert's Rebellion. The mint symbolizes his making of "dragons" - promoting Targaryen revenge and restoration.

But fragrances are also important (does the mint aroma make Baelish a perfumed Seneschal?) and it is specifically his breath that is affected. Breathing symbolism is a big motif as we see in the various deaths by hanging or throat slitting, Joffrey's death, Cressen's death, the region called The Neck that separates the North from the rest of Westeros.

For more insight into the mint wordplay, I suspect we need to examine Manderly's offer to start up a mint to make coins for King Robb Stark in the North. 

This is really good stuff...thank you. I really like the rubbing of two dragons analogy. It just occurred to me after reading your post, do you think the wordplay might also be related to the bank of Braavos somehow?

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites
1 hour ago, LadyOfCastamere said:

I thought similiar when I read about it, especially when Lysa explains the details. I was watching for further clues but if I'm not wrong, it hasn't been mentioned again since the murder of Lysa, so there is that.

 

It was getting on my nerves whenever I saw it in the books, especially since I had no clue what the author was trying to hint at. lol

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites
8 minutes ago, Aryya Stark said:

It was getting on my nerves whenever I saw it in the books, especially since I had no clue what the author was trying to hint at. lol

I suspect that new coins in Westeros include less gold or silver than old coins. Or Littlefinger mints less pure coins and keeps all gold and silver that he saves for himself.

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites
2 hours ago, Seams said:

There is so much lying (or underhanded behavior) in the books that I doubt it is signaled by one type of food. I have seen theories that Arbor Gold signals a lie or sapphires signal a lie. It's just too hard to pinpoint. (Not to mention, until we know how the books end and understand more of the secret origins and relationships among characters, we don't fully know who is lying.)

Mint is unique to Littlefinger, I think. I assumed that, as Master of Coin, there was wordplay on mint the plant and mint where coins are made. We are told more than once that Littlefinger can rub two dragons together to get another. I think there is another layer of meaning in this skill of Littlefinger's, which is always specifically mentioned in connection with the coins called gold dragons, never with silver stags or lesser coins.

In other words, the chewing of mint is a symbol of Littlefinger's secret participation in a Targaryen restoration plot. He is helping to get revenge on the key players of Robert's Rebellion. The mint symbolizes his making of "dragons" - promoting Targaryen revenge and restoration.

But fragrances are also important (does the mint aroma make Baelish a perfumed Seneschal?) and it is specifically his breath that is affected. Breathing symbolism is a big motif as we see in the various deaths by hanging or throat slitting, Joffrey's death, Cressen's death, the region called The Neck that separates the North from the rest of Westeros.

For more insight into the mint wordplay, I suspect we need to examine Manderly's offer to start up a mint to make coins for King Robb Stark in the North. 

@Aryya Stark

I think we can also bring in the whole "words are wind" aspect here. LF's words are sweet, but meaningless.

So there is plenty of subtextual meaning in all of this, but on the surface it is just one of LF's personal affectations. He puts a lot of stock in proper grooming, so he likes to keep his breath fresh. Plus, as others mentioned above, he is manipulating Lysa Arryn who abhors foul breath.

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites
38 minutes ago, Loose Bolt said:

I suspect that new coins in Westeros include less gold or silver than old coins. Or Littlefinger mints less pure coins and keeps all gold and silver that he saves for himself.

Tyrion and Jaime noticed him filching the coins of the realm.

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites
8 minutes ago, John Suburbs said:

@Aryya Stark

I think we can also bring in the whole "words are wind" aspect here. LF's words are sweet, but meaningless.

So there is plenty of subtextual meaning in all of this, but on the surface it is just one of LF's personal affectations. He puts a lot of stock in proper grooming, so he likes to keep his breath fresh. Plus, as others mentioned above, he is manipulating Lysa Arryn who abhors foul breath.

This is so interesting...I just reread Ned's chapter in the dungeon where he has a vision:

The king heard him. “You stiff-necked fool,” he muttered, “too proud to listen. Can you eat pride, Stark? Will honor shield your children?” Cracks ran down his face, fissures opening in the flesh, and he reached up and ripped the mask away. It was not Robert at all; it was Littlefinger, grinning, mocking him. When he opened his mouth to speak, his lies turned to pale moths and took wing.

Speaking of subtextual meaning, the moth motif is death. Whenever he opens his mouth he brings death and destruction...perhaps that is why he needs the mint :)

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites
2 hours ago, Aryya Stark said:

This is really good stuff...thank you. I really like the rubbing of two dragons analogy. It just occurred to me after reading your post, do you think the wordplay might also be related to the bank of Braavos somehow?

I have very strong suspicions that Littlefinger has close ties to the Bank of Braavos which, in turn, has strong ties to the Faceless Men. It would not surprise me at all if Littlefinger was working with the bank to put the Baratheon regime deep into debt.

There is an illustration in the World book with pictures of coins from around the world, I believe.

Also, Vargo Hoat wears a long chain made with coins from around the world.

These might be further clues about the meaning of mint chewing / minting coins.

 

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites
2 minutes ago, Seams said:

I have very strong suspicions that Littlefinger has close ties to the Bank of Braavos which, in turn, has strong ties to the Faceless Men. It would not surprise me at all if Littlefinger was working with the bank to put the Baratheon regime deep into debt.

There is an illustration in the World book with pictures of coins from around the world, I believe.

Also, Vargo Hoat wears a long chain made with coins from around the world.

These might be further clues about the meaning of mint chewing / minting coins.

 

I really really like this. I aways thought Vargo Hoat was connected with Dorne, because of the Marwin/Oberyn Marwin/Qyburn connection. And honestly, I never noticed Vargo's chain lol.

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites
3 minutes ago, Aryya Stark said:

I really really like this. I aways thought Vargo Hoat was connected with Dorne, because of the Marwin/Oberyn Marwin/Qyburn connection. And honestly, I never noticed Vargo's chain lol.

Here is an old post speculating that everyone is a coin - some are dragons, some are half groats - that eventually gets spent. Focus on Hoat and Groat, here.

Here's some thoughts about Manderly's mint proposal and a symbolic "trading up" by Davos, who gives a half penny and gains an apple (associated with kings):

Random gobbledygook:

Links within links re: Penny as a coin:

 

 

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites
3 hours ago, Seams said:

I have very strong suspicions that Littlefinger has close ties to the Bank of Braavos which, in turn, has strong ties to the Faceless Men. It would not surprise me at all if Littlefinger was working with the bank to put the Baratheon regime deep into debt.

There is an illustration in the World book with pictures of coins from around the world, I believe.

Also, Vargo Hoat wears a long chain made with coins from around the world.

These might be further clues about the meaning of mint chewing / minting coins.

 

That reminds me of the theory that LF could be a FM. I generally wonder what the FM try to achieve. I do know that they're the descendants of the slaves of Valyria, so it would not be surprising if they had bad blood with the Targaryens. They don't seem to however hate them or seek to rid the world of Targaryens. or do they hate magic, the way the Citadel does? There is no actual slavery in Westeros, either, so what do they seek?
It makes me wonder what Littlefinger would say/do if Arya had shown him the coin she received from Jaqen.

@Gingin I had that thought as well, when I read about it..make him a nice mint tea and drop one of Sansa's amethysts in there B)

 

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites
4 hours ago, Aryya Stark said:

Speaking of subtextual meaning, the moth motif is death. Whenever he opens his mouth he brings death and destruction...perhaps that is why he needs the mint :)

In occidental imaginery, mint is indeed associated with underworld and death, the opposit of the thyme (I think that in the saga, lemon and orange are playing the part of the thyme) which was the aroma used on the phoenix pyre. Thyme is linked to the sun, the hot and dryness. The mint is linked to the cold, darkness and damp. I think GRRM also used in his own way these symbols (mint//orange-lemon) to tell us some stories about winter and summer, sun and moon, cold and hot, ice and fire, and the origins of their deadly separation and antagonism.

As a parallelism Sansa/Arya, you have the kindly man in the HOBAW, who is ordinary chewing orange's rinds.

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

The first thing I thought of was LF is a flatterer. Check out the eight circle of hell. Second bolgia. Flatterers were steeped in excrement as a representative of the falseties they spoke in life. 

He needs the mint to cover up the sh*t coming out of his mouth. 

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
Sign in to follow this  

×