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Has GRRM stated what it means for a knight to be "worthy' to wield Dawn?

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Posted (edited)
On ‎8‎/‎16‎/‎2019 at 10:37 PM, Lord Varys said:

Sure, the fact that he is a Dayne is obviously one of my main reasons.

Yeah, I don't see it.  Respect for tradition obviously plays no part of the picture.  So why would he want it at all?

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I doubt he cares what it 'symbolically represents'.

Then I doubt he cares whether it be held by a Dayne either.  What could a pansy like him ever want with a sword that big?  What's he going to do with it?  Slay a dragon?  He'd obviously rather slay the maiden.

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In fact, Darkstar taking will like help to give the sword a darker reputation, one better fitting with a book as dark as TWoW.

What would be the point of giving Dawn a darker reputation?  Sounds nihilistic.

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Where did I say Darkstar was the only option? I just said that I think Darkstar is the most likeliest future wielder of Dawn assuming anyone is going to wield the sword in the next couple of books (which I don't think is particularly likely, anyway).

I agree with you that Darkstar is not very likely.  He is obviously unworthy, and the tradition says he must be worthy … worthy in the context of being a worthy KNIGHT, which would seem to incorporate the ideals of knighthood.

If you're going to discard the tradition, then there is no reason for him to be a Dayne.

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If you want to make a case that anybody and their grandmother can become a Sword of the Morning then you are the one who has to make a case for that.

I already did.  There are no Daynes-by-birth available, who are established as characters in the story, and who would be capable of wielding Dawn, and who are worthy of wielding Dawn. That gives us license to consider options that would otherwise seem less likely (if we had other options), such as a "Sword of the Morning" who is not a Dayne-by-Birth, or perhaps not even a Dayne at all.

You'd rather consider an unworthy Dayne, merely because his name is "Dayne" (as if the tradition matters at all if you discard the "worthy" part).  But that sounds to me like a far more serious mockery of the tradition.

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All I do here is point out that there is no reason to believe any 'Dayne by marriage' is likely to wield the sword on the basis of the textual evidence we have at this point.

That goes hand in hand with your opinion that there is no reason to believe ANYONE will wield Dawn, or become a "Sword of the Morning" (or at least, not a worthy one).

But I think there is such foreshadowing.  And if you accept that there is reason to suspect there will be a (worthy) Sword of the Morning, then, obviously, there is also reason to believe he might not be a "Dayne-by-Birth".

Edited by Platypus Rex

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15 hours ago, Lord Varys said:

The appendix of AFfC made it appear as if the group Edric was now with is simply another branch of the Brotherhood Without Banners. That's what I go with until such a time as Edric shows up (elsewhere).

The AFFC appendix lists about 8 people, who seemingly chose not to follow Stoneheart, in a context that implies they are still a group in one sense.  There is no indication about where they are.  There is nothing that indicates that they have not traveled to Starfall.  And I don't read it as necessarily implying that they are all still together, either.

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On ‎8‎/‎15‎/‎2019 at 10:02 PM, FictionIsntReal said:

Who's the tall warrior with blue eyes traveling with Edric and Dawn?

Well, it might seem to be, and might actually be, Brienne traveling with Podrick and Oathkeeper.   All I am saying is that that might not necessarily be the case.

And if anyone should suggest that the tall facially-scarred warrior might actually be Sandor, people will say "Sandor's eyes are grey, not blue."  But that might not actually be the case either.  All we actually know about Sandor's eyes is that they APPEAR grey, in dim light, when dilated by dim light, rage, and inebriation. 

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Posted (edited)
On 8/14/2019 at 8:45 PM, Lord Varys said:

Pretty sure Darkstar is just going to take Dawn, no matter what the absent Lord of Starfall thinks of it. Edric is just a boy, and somewhere in the Riverlands, but Dawn is there for the taking. And Darkstar is Darkstar.

I don’t know that we have any evidence that Dawn is there for the taking.  I assume that it’s under lock and key in Starfall.  I think it’s a safe guess that Edric is being groomed for the role, and it doesn’t appear that he’s done anything to disqualify himself yet, assuming that he can avoid being killed before he returns to Starfall.

As for Darkstar, I think we can read between the lines a bit and maybe assume that he’s already made his case for for the sword and title, but has been rebuffed.

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“There was an Arthur Dayne,” Myrcella said. “He was a knight of the Kingsguard in the days of Mad King Aerys.”
“He was the Sword of the Morning. He is dead.”
“Are you the Sword of the Morning now?”
“No. Men call me Darkstar, and I am of the night.”

“As she led the princess to the fire, Arianne found Ser Gerold behind her. “My House goes back ten thousand years, unto the dawn of days,” he complained. “Why is it that my cousin is the only Dayne that anyone remembers?”
“He was a great knight,” Ser Arys Oakheart put in.
“He had a great sword,” Darkstar said.”

So a couple of things here.  There is obvious a bit of bitterness in Gerold’s tone here, especially when he implies that it was the sword that made Arthur great, as opposed to Arthur’s character making him worthy to possess the sword and title.  So undoubtably Gerold believes that if given the sword, people will recognize his greatness.  

The other thing to take note of, is that Arthur appears to be the most famous Dayne, ever.  So Arthur’s deeds and reputation might be even greater than the average wielder of Dawn.

So undoubtably, someone weak of arms would probably be excluded (i.e. someone like Sam), as would someone of weak character and reputation (presumably like Gerold).  But it probably wouldn’t be necessary to match Ser Arthur’s prowess or reputation to possess it.

Edited by Frey family reunion

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Posted (edited)
On 8/17/2019 at 10:35 PM, Platypus Rex said:

I already did.  There are no Daynes-by-birth available, who are established as characters in the story, and who would be capable of wielding Dawn, and who are worthy of wielding Dawn. That gives us license to consider options that would otherwise seem less likely (if we had other options), such as a "Sword of the Morning" who is not a Dayne-by-Birth, or perhaps not even a Dayne at all.

 You'd rather consider an unworthy Dayne, merely because his name is "Dayne" (as if the tradition matters at all if you discard the "worthy" part).  But that sounds to me like a far more serious mockery of the tradition.

Don’t really understand this bit.  Edric is the heir to the House, and has proved his worth in battle and has proved his loyalty to the knight he was squiring for.  So Edric would certainly be worthy of wielding Dawn, assuming he lives long enough to return to Starfall.

And it seems pretty apparent that the Daynes have never let the sword leave their House:

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The wielder of Dawn is always given the title of Sword of the Morning, and only a knight of House Dayne who is deemed worthy can carry it.

For this reason, the Swords of the Morning are all famous throughout the Seven Kingdoms. There are boys who secretly dream of being a son of Starfall so they might claim that storied sword and its title.

First and foremost, you have to be of House Dayne, then you have to be a knight, and then you have to be considered a worthy enough knight to possess it.

If in the present, there is no one that meets all three of these criteria, than the sword sits in Starfall until someone comes along that meets all three factors.  

Which is why no one has been given the title since Ser Arthur’s death, it’s fairly obvious to me that they are giving Edric a chance to prove himself so he can take the sword and title when he comes of age.

Edited by Frey family reunion

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Posted (edited)

I'm not strictly sure "worthy enough knight" gives the right connotation -- it suggests one's ability and perhaps adherence to chivalric codes as a knight is the measure, whereas... well, we don't actually know what "worthy" means. I would suppose it is that, because surely if Dawn magically chooses its wielder somehow, well, the maesters would have to square that with some of their assumptions of the status of magic in this post-Doom era! But we don't absolutely know.

In any case, I suspect Edric was certainly written as being intended to be considered worthy after the five year jump George planned post-ASoS. Now? Well, I think he's going to be showing up at a crucial moment for events in Dorne, so... yeah, I suspect Edric will be carrying it at some point in TWoW. Just a guess.

Also, re: knighthood, Beric knighted all the members of the brotherhood. We're explicitly told this, that every man present in the hollow hill was a knight. This almost certainly includes Edric, even if he continues to act as Beric's squire, IMO. And even if Beric didn't, pretty sure any of the other knights made by Beric could have done it post the dissolution of Beric's brotherhood. 

Edited by Ran

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Sorry, Ned Dayne is just a scared child back in ASoS, which took place a mere couple of months before ADwD. There is little to no chance that he would ever be worthy of wearing Dayne in any meaningful sense of the word.

And what would be the point of giving a sword to a child, anyway?

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Posted (edited)

"Scared" is contextual -- he's a bit shy, but he's a good lad, as noted.

More significantly, he's actually quite brave, and is blooded. He stuck by Beric when Gregor felled him and helped drag him to safety, prepared to fight to defend him despite being all of 12, and later Arya notes he was fighting at Beric's side when they captured Septon Utt. I'm guessing the remnant of the brotherhood who are not with Stoneheart and still alive are with Edric, perhaps feeling honor-bound to see him safely to his home.

As to the purpose? Because there's a reason why the office exists, I'd suppose, and having a Sword of the Morning is probably going to be relevant at this particular juncture. Use your imagination.

Edited by Ran

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7 minutes ago, Ran said:

Use your imagination.

Never had much imagination for the Dawn thing. I honestly everything that the Sword of the Morning business is just background stuff - and the clue there is that we are in a day and age where there is simply no worthy Dayne around.

There might be information about the origin of Dawn and the ancient Daynes and such, but the story really doesn't need another Sword of the Morning.

But, honestly, the whole Darkstar-Obara-Areo plot really is a complete mystery to me. I think they will eventually end up at Starfall for some reason, but what kind of relevant plot there can be there I really cannot imagine. There might be Jon hints there, of course, and other background information. But what kind of story is there? They could eventually hook up with Arianne and Aegon, but what would be the point of the entire plot?

No idea, really.

If Gerold gets the sword we can at least expect to see it in action.

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On 8/29/2019 at 3:40 PM, Frey family reunion said:

Don’t really understand this bit.  Edric is the heir to the House, and has proved his worth in battle and has proved his loyalty to the knight he was squiring for.  So Edric would certainly be worthy of wielding Dawn, assuming he lives long enough to return to Starfall.

I don't doubt Edric's character.  But he is only a squire, not a knight.  And I would assume there is more to weilding Dawn than character.  It's a big sword, and presumably requires a big strong man to use it.

I suppose you could argue that GRRM originally planned for a 5-year gap, and that the original plan was for Edric to be 17 or 18, and a big strong man, by the time he wields Dawn.  So now maybe GRRM just have to follow his original plan and have Edric grow up double-quick.

Except I don't think this was ever the plan - 5 year gap or no.  Part of the setup for Dawn is that it is NOT (necessarily) wielded by the current Lord.  I'm not sure why GRRM would make such a setup, only to have Dawn wielded by the current Lord after all.  I guess he judged himself worthy?

No, I think Edric's role in the story is to choose the next Sword of the Morning.  And I expect him to make a worthy choice, precisely because of his good character. 

On 8/29/2019 at 3:40 PM, Frey family reunion said:

And it seems pretty apparent that the Daynes have never let the sword leave their House:

That's not apparent at all.  Sure, GRRM did say that Dawn would remain at Starfall until a new Sword of the Morning arises.  But the Sword of the Morning may be arising, off page, as we speak.  I don't expect we will be privy to these developments as they occur.

On 8/29/2019 at 3:40 PM, Frey family reunion said:

First and foremost, you have to be of House Dayne, then you have to be a knight, and then you have to be considered a worthy enough knight to possess it.

The part of this that most fuzzy for me, is the precise meaning of the phrase "of House Dayne".  A knight sworn to the servie of House Dayne is in some sense "of House Dayne".  Whoever Allyria Dayne marries may in some sense be "of House Dayne."

On 8/29/2019 at 3:40 PM, Frey family reunion said:

If in the present, there is no one that meets all three of these criteria, than the sword sits in Starfall until someone comes along that meets all three factors.  

I don't think the Knight will necessarily have to go to Dawn and Starfall.  Dawn might leave Starfall, and be brought to meet the Knight.

On 8/29/2019 at 3:40 PM, Frey family reunion said:

Which is why no one has been given the title since Ser Arthur’s death, it’s fairly obvious to me that they are giving Edric a chance to prove himself so he can take the sword and title when he comes of age.

Why would that be obvious?  That seems to spoil the point of the Tradition - withholding the sword from potentially worthy knights just to give the reigning Lord a chance to "prove himself".  As if you cannot let go of the "usual" way of doing things, even though we have specifically been told that that is not how things get done with Dawn.  And is not the "Sword of the Morning" going to arrive too late to play any role in the current story?

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On 8/29/2019 at 5:11 PM, Ran said:

Also, re: knighthood, Beric knighted all the members of the brotherhood. We're explicitly told this, that every man present in the hollow hill was a knight. This almost certainly includes Edric, even if he continues to act as Beric's squire, IMO. And even if Beric didn't, pretty sure any of the other knights made by Beric could have done it post the dissolution of Beric's brotherhood. 

Re;  the bolded part: That's not a safe guess at all.  Knighting 12 year olds seems to be at odds with the older traditions of knighthood.  We have one example of a Targaryen being knighted at age 12, but that seems only to show that the Targs don't care much for the rules.

It seems the Targs set enough of a precedent that being knighted at 15 is evidently more common than it used to be.  But that does not make Edric's knighting at age 12 a certainty.

Anyhow, the suggestion that Edric must have been knighted because the BwW knights EVERYBODY seems to deprive the distinction of all meaning.  Certainly, if I had been knighted by Lem Lemoncloak or by some Rh'llor zombie shell of a former knight, I would not go around boasting about it.  I'd find someone else to knight me, if I could.

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1 hour ago, Platypus Rex said:

Re;  the bolded part: That's not a safe guess at all.  Knighting 12 year olds seems to be at odds with the older traditions of knighthood.  We have one example of a Targaryen being knighted at age 12, but that seems only to show that the Targs don't care much for the rules.

It seems the Targs set enough of a precedent that being knighted at 15 is evidently more common than it used to be.  But that does not make Edric's knighting at age 12 a certainty.

Anyhow, the suggestion that Edric must have been knighted because the BwW knights EVERYBODY seems to deprive the distinction of all meaning. 

Given that all of the brotherhood fought, bled, and risked death to defend the poor and weak, one can understand why Beric -- with his obsession over this -- felt them all worthy. It was clearly also a very effective tool to create esprit de corps.

Again, the statement is pretty unequivocal -- every one there was a knight. The only wiggle room is that Edric is young, but he had fought like all the rest do I'm doubtful Beric would not have knighted him as well.

1 hour ago, Platypus Rex said:

Certainly, if I had been knighted by Lem Lemoncloak or by some Rh'llor zombie shell of a former knight, I would not go around boasting about it.  I'd find someone else to knight me, if I could.

 

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11 hours ago, Platypus Rex said:

Except I don't think this was ever the plan - 5 year gap or no.  Part of the setup for Dawn is that it is NOT (necessarily) wielded by the current Lord.  I'm not sure why GRRM would make such a setup, only to have Dawn wielded by the current Lord after all.  I guess he judged himself worthy?

No, I think Edric's role in the story is to choose the next Sword of the Morning.  And I expect him to make a worthy choice, precisely because of his good character. 

That's not apparent at all.  Sure, GRRM did say that Dawn would remain at Starfall until a new Sword of the Morning arises.  But the Sword of the Morning may be arising, off page, as we speak.  I don't expect we will be privy to these developments as they occur.

I don't think the Knight will necessarily have to go to Dawn and Starfall.  Dawn might leave Starfall, and be brought to meet the Knight.

Why would that be obvious?  That seems to spoil the point of the Tradition - withholding the sword from potentially worthy knights just to give the reigning Lord a chance to "prove himself".  As if you cannot let go of the "usual" way of doing things, even though we have specifically been told that that is not how things get done with Dawn.  And is not the "Sword of the Morning" going to arrive too late to play any role in the current story?

I think you might be onto something. Valyrian swords are typically passed down within families, but we've got Jon receiving Longclaw despite not being a Mormont and Brienne receiving Oathkeeper simply because Jaime deemed her worthy. The Long Night is an unusual event and could lead to violations of normal traditions. Brienne could be knighted and Dawn could be granted to someone other than a Dayne.

10 hours ago, Platypus Rex said:

Anyhow, the suggestion that Edric must have been knighted because the BwW knights EVERYBODY seems to deprive the distinction of all meaning.  Certainly, if I had been knighted by Lem Lemoncloak or by some Rh'llor zombie shell of a former knight, I would not go around boasting about it.  I'd find someone else to knight me, if I could.

Has anybody ever been knighted multiple times?

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11 hours ago, Ran said:

Given that all of the brotherhood fought, bled, and risked death to defend the poor and weak, one can understand why Beric -- with his obsession over this -- felt them all worthy. It was clearly also a very effective tool to create esprit de corps.

Well, I don't share this idealized view of the BwB, but never mind that. 

Sure, if the text established that Beric had knighted Edric, one might accept and understand that, in his own mind, perhaps he did it for such reasons.  However, the text nowhere establishes that he did such a thing.

11 hours ago, Ran said:

Again, the statement is pretty unequivocal -- every one there was a knight.

"... every man you see before you …"    There is no evidence that the Hound can see Edric.  Also, Edric is not a man.  He is a child.

11 hours ago, Ran said:

The only wiggle room is that Edric is young, ….

Also that he is not visibly present, nor perhaps even present at all.  He is not one of the men that the Hound can see before him.

11 hours ago, Ran said:

… but he had fought like all the rest do I'm doubtful Beric would not have knighted him as well.

I'm merely objecting to the certain claim that he was knighted.  I agree, however, that the reverse is not certain either.

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5 hours ago, FictionIsntReal said:

Has anybody ever been knighted multiple times?

I can't think of any examples from the story.  But, from the logic of the situation, it does seem like something that could happen.

There is a long tradition of people sometimes getting married more than once …. and to the same spouse … and without even having gotten a divorce or annulment in the interim.  According to the logic of the traditional marriage doctrine, if the first marriage was valid, then the second marriage is a nullity; and if the second was valid, then the first must have been a nullity.  Nobody cares.  What matters is that everyone is reassured that, one way or another, the couple are indeed married.

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1 hour ago, Platypus Rex said:

I can't think of any examples from the story.  But, from the logic of the situation, it does seem like something that could happen.

There is a long tradition of people sometimes getting married more than once …. and to the same spouse … and without even having gotten a divorce or annulment in the interim.  According to the logic of the traditional marriage doctrine, if the first marriage was valid, then the second marriage is a nullity; and if the second was valid, then the first must have been a nullity.  Nobody cares.  What matters is that everyone is reassured that, one way or another, the couple are indeed married.

Knighthood is more of a status than a relationship between two people.

54 minutes ago, The Wondering Wolf said:

Pate the Woodcock was knighted (a second time?) in 49 AC after he had won a spot in the kingsguard, because people doubted his knightship.

Good catch.

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8 minutes ago, FictionIsntReal said:

Knighthood is more of a status than a relationship between two people.

Good catch.

Different things are different, but that does not rule out a valid analogy.  Being married, and to a specific person, is also a "status".  More specifically analogy, if the "status" is doubted, and/or if the actuality or validity of the first ceremony is doubted, a second ceremony, before more witnesses, or under less dubious circumstances, will reassure the doubts.  And that is exactly what @The Wondering Wolf 's good catch found.  

So apparently, the analogy works.

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Posted (edited)
4 hours ago, Platypus Rex said:

Well, I don't share this idealized view of the BwB, but never mind that. 

I'm not sure it's idealized. Beric Dondarrion, returned from death,  became single-mindedly obsessed with an impossible, hopeless cause. It happened to be noble, but hopeless. Men died following him, believing in him and that cause. 

 

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"... every man you see before you …"    There is no evidence that the Hound can see Edric. 

It's absurd to think Jack is just referring to people directly in front of the Hound. The scene is described with people entering from all about them. Presumably the Hound can turn his head.

 

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Also, Edric is not a man.  He is a child.

Gendry was a child and was knighted without so ever as much as lifting a sword alongside the brotherhood. "Man" is very flexible.

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Also that he is not visibly present, nor perhaps even present at all. 

He is explicitly named as being present just a few lines later.

I've already accounted for the possibility of his youth as contradicting. But considering that Beric took no hesitation in knighting Gendry, I'm incredulous that Edric never received the accolade after his manifest efforts on behalf of Beric and the brotherhood, given Beric's obsessive focus on their cause. Only Edric's youth could possibly speak against his doing it, but when we have characters saying things like this:

 

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 "We are brothers here," Thoros of Myr declared. "Holy brothers, sworn to the realm, to our god, and to each other."

 "The brotherhood without banners." Tom Sevenstrings plucked a string. "The knights of the hollow hill."

And you see Edric is listed as a member of the brotherhood, well, one leads to the other.

I'll grant that Edric himself may, for all his love and respect of Beric, recognize that being knighted at 12 is so unorthodox that he won't actually claim it when he returns to polite society. But then again...

Edited by Ran

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The Daynes may have their own criteria that have nothing to do with what is commonly believed chivalrous.   Andal values dominate the qualities that make a good knight.  The Daynes may have their own checklists.  You know they have always remained loyal to the Targaryens.  The exception being Ashara who has to be the black sheep of the family for not hating the enemies of the Targaryens.  

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