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Alyn Oakenfist

(Spoilers Fire&Blood) Can Velaryons ride dragons?

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So reading Fire&Blood it pretty clear that Addam and Alyn Velaryon are Corlys's sons. Now since Addam is a dragon rider and doesn't have any Targaryen ancestry that we know of, does that mean Velaryons can ride dragons?

Edited by Alyn Oakenfist

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41 minutes ago, Alyn Oakenfist said:

So reading Fire&Blood it pretty clear that Addam and Alyn Velaryon are Corlys's sons. Now since Addam is a dragon rider and doesn't have any Targaryen ancestry that we know of, does that mean Velaryons can ride dragons?

Whether fathered by Laenor or Corlys, it seems unlikely that Marilda would have claimed her sons to be dragonseed and enabled them to attempt to claim dragons if she didn't know they had somewhat recent Targaryen ancestry.

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26 minutes ago, Bael's Bastard said:

Whether fathered by Laenor or Corlys, it seems unlikely that Marilda would have claimed her sons to be dragonseed and enabled them to attempt to claim dragons if she didn't know they had somewhat recent Targaryen ancestry.

Well the only Targ ancestor of Corlys that we know of is before the conquest, and we know that Targ ancestry alone isn't enough as Quentyn proved. And it makes a lot of difference if they were Corlys's or Leanor's since Leanor's mother was Rhaenys Targaryen. However since Laenor was gay, I think it's doubtful that they were his. So if Addam was Corlys's, which he probably was, and his last Targ ancestor was since before the Conquest, (we know what every Targ did inbetween) doesn't this prove that Velaryons (or at least Velaryons after conquest) can ride dragons? (btw can you imagine how much cooler Corlys would have been if he had rode a dragon? Not even The Rogue Prince would be as cool)

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47 minutes ago, Alyn Oakenfist said:

Well the only Targ ancestor of Corlys that we know of is before the conquest, and we know that Targ ancestry alone isn't enough as Quentyn proved. And it makes a lot of difference if they were Corlys's or Leanor's since Leanor's mother was Rhaenys Targaryen. However since Laenor was gay, I think it's doubtful that they were his. So if Addam was Corlys's, which he probably was, and his last Targ ancestor was since before the Conquest, (we know what every Targ did inbetween) doesn't this prove that Velaryons (or at least Velaryons after conquest) can ride dragons? (btw can you imagine how much cooler Corlys would have been if he had rode a dragon? Not even The Rogue Prince would be as cool)

The only known Velaryon dragonriders are Laenor and Laena, who had a Targ mother, Laenor's "sons," who had a Targ mother, and the Hull boys.

Marilda would know better than anyone whether her sons were Laenor's or Corlys's, and it is highly unlikely she would have sent her sons to try to claim dragon without knowing they had some recent Targ ancestry, whether from their father, or from her own ancestors.

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There is a chance that Marilda of Hull had an or multiple alleged dragonseeds in her more recent ancestry, although that's actually not all that likely since no descendant of Aegon I up to Aegon II actually seems to have fathered acknowledged bastards - meaning the last of those Targaryens who allegedly liked to make free with their smallfolk on Dragonstone was actually Lord Aerion Targaryen.

One can, perhaps, speculate that Prince Aemon had some clandestine bastards on Dragonstone, but he did serve his father as Master of Laws from 80 AC onwards, meaning he wouldn't have had that much time for things like that. A young Daemon Targaryen could have also fathered bastards on Dragonstone during his father's tenure as Prince of Dragonstone from 92 AC onwards, but since Marilda is confirmed the daughter of a shipwright it seems very unlikely that she is his daughter, even more so since she is a Driftmarkian not a Dragonstonian by birth.

Prince Baelon's decision not to remarry after his beloved sister-wife's death - neither to another sister nor to another woman - doesn't make it very likely he had clandestine affairs while Prince of Dragonstone, although that's certainly not impossible, either.

One has to keep in mind that Marilda - whose father was a shipwright - likely had a pretty mixed ancestry due to her family's proximity to the harbor (which, to be sure, would have been the case for all people living in Hull and Spicetown). In fact, it is to be expected that there was much migration between Dragonstone and Driftmark even before the Conquest, and a migration to Driftmark from Dragonstone and elsewhere would have increased during the boom Corlys' wealth brought to the island.

In that sense it is certainly not impossible that some of Marilda's ancestors from, say, the mid-1st century or so are themselves the descendants of Dragonstonian dragonseeds.

More likely, of course, is that there might be multiple Velaryon bastards among her ancestry. The Velaryons seem to have been much more numerous than the Targaryens, considering the sons of the second Daemon Velaryon (at least three), his brother (he has to have at least one for him to have a niece), Corlys' two younger brothers, his six nephews, etc.

The idea that you have to have all that close a dragonlord ancestor to become a dragonrider has never been established. It could be enough that Addam of Hull had a Targaryen great-great-great-grandmother (which would be the case if we assume Valaena Velaryon - who had a Targaryen mother - and the first Daemon Velaryon were siblings). After all, it also seems the case that the other lowborn dragonriders didn't have any recent Targaryen ancestors, either. If any of them had been the son of an acknowledged dragonseed then this would have been recorded by historians. They would have bragged about their Targaryen blood not only about their dragons.

And what I wrote above about the scarcity of acknowledged Targaryen bastards from Aegon I to Aegon II also goes for Hugh and Ulf. But then, if there were some Targaryens on Dragonstone before the Conquest with the sexual appetites of Aegon IV - which is not that unlikely considering some of them (like Aegon II, Aegon IV, Aerys II) really liked to sleep around - then they could have produced a massive amount of illegtimate offspring over the years and those people could and would have intermarried over the years, meaning people like Ulf and Hugh might have had not just one or two but many dragonseeds among their ancestors - with some of them filling multiple roles in their family tree (with Nettles there is a pretty good chance that Daemon is her father).

And in Addam's case we have to keep in mind that he claimed Laenor's dragon - who, if Corlys was his father, was Laenor's half-brother - which might have given him an advantage in claiming Seasmoke if the dragon somehow felt their close kinship. An edge Alyn of Hull didn't have when he tried to claim Sheepstealer.

The Quentyn example seems to be similar - he may have been able to mount Viserion ... it was Rhaegal who killed him, the dragon he ignored until it was too late.

Brown Ben Plumm - who doesn't exactly have a Targaryen ancestry among his more recent ancestors (Elaena and Aegon IV seem to have been his great-grandparents or great-great-grandparents) - is very popular with Dany's dragon and clearly has the potential to become a dragonrider himself. Quentyn himself might also have Aegon IV and Naerys as his great-great-grandparents, which would make him not that different.

9 hours ago, Bael's Bastard said:

The only known Velaryon dragonriders are Laenor and Laena, who had a Targ mother, Laenor's "sons," who had a Targ mother, and the Hull boys.

Marilda would know better than anyone whether her sons were Laenor's or Corlys's, and it is highly unlikely she would have sent her sons to try to claim dragon without knowing they had some recent Targ ancestry, whether from their father, or from her own ancestors.

That idea presupposes Marilda of Hull had detailed knowledge in dragonlore or was convinced for some other reason that you need to have 'some recent Targ ancestry' to become a dragonrider. There is actually no indication that anyone at Dragonstone believed that at this point - else Jacaerys Velaryon would not have motivated essentially anyone to try and claim a dragon in exchange for a knighthood. Instead, one assumes he and Rhaenyra's other people spread the story that just a very small drop of Targaryen blood was enough to mount a dragon to get themselves more volunteers.

I mean, these people allowed crucial members of the court who either had no Targaryen blood at all or at best some very distant Targaryen ancestors (which is possible for the Darklyn and Massey guys who tried to mount a dragon) to get themselves killed. This was not done with the people in charge caring about the health or well-being of the volunteers - and Marilda of Hull doesn't seem to be the kind of woman who would wrap her children in cotton wool. She wanted to advance her children by making them dragonriders.

Edited by Lord Varys

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Marilda is of unsure ancestry but she can have a Valyrian ancestor herself from the Free Cities (where dragon blood is more pure) or even a Targaryen descendant from the female line (Gaemon the Glorious has a daughter whose descendants were still around at 101 and the best place for them to live is Dragostone or Driftmark). She can be a niece of the claimant of 101.

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5 hours ago, Endymion I Targaryen said:

Marilda is of unsure ancestry but she can have a Valyrian ancestor herself from the Free Cities (where dragon blood is more pure) or even a Targaryen descendant from the female line (Gaemon the Glorious has a daughter whose descendants were still around at 101 and the best place for them to live is Dragostone or Driftmark). She can be a niece of the claimant of 101.

I rather assume that the guy who claimed he was the descendant of Gaemon the Glorious through the female line may be the father of Hazel Harte (i.e. likely some Lord Harte), the mother of Queen Daenaera Velaryon. She has such stunning Valyrian features that it would make sense if she had Valyrian blood on both sides of her ancestry.

But that's just a guess.

Chances that a commoner produced those parchments are slim, as is the idea that some petty lord married his daughter to a shipwright, so I doubt that's the case.

But as I said above - Marilda could have a number of Velaryon bastards among her own ancestry considering how numerous the family was in the 1st century, and there certainly could also be some dragonseeds among her ancestry from before the Conquest.

Or even actual Valyrian dragonlords from the days before the Doom. We don't know how Valyrian the people on Dragonstone and Driftmark actually are, i.e. how many Valyrians migrated to those place before the Doom and how many came there when the Targaryens settled on Dragonstone. If, say, only 10-20% of the more recent ancestors of the average Dragonstonian have their ultimate roots in Westeros, whereas 80-90% go back to Valyria and the Lands of the Long Summer (because Aenar essentially (re-)populated Dragonstone with his own people and/or the both islands were essentially first populated by the Valyrians, anyway) then there might be more than just a few drops of dragonlord among these people, assuming there were legitimate and illegitimate descendants of various dragonlord families among those people.

In such a scenario it wouldn't be particularly surprising if some of them have the ability to become dragonriders.

I mean, Hugh and Ulf - who seem to be both Dragonstonians by birth - also don't seem to have acknowledged dragonseeds or known Targaryens among their most recent ancestors, yet they do become dragonriders. And in Ulf's case it is definitely clear that he has Valyrian features, so it seems a given he has some Targaryen, Velaryon, or other Valyrian blood somewhere in his family tree. It might be the same with Hugh, but we don't have a description for him.

And if we pause for a moment, then chances that the Targaryens spread their semen around their castle - with or without acknowledging such children as dragonseeds - is actually not that low. I mean, remember that Theon and - as Cat at least assumes -, Robb, too, do have fun with the commoners living around Winterfell. If you imagine how many Starks must have done that kind of thing for centuries and millennia then you can start to wonder how close cousins the commoners around Winterfell (and likely also many of the castle servants, etc.) and the family ruling the castle actually are.

The fact that we don't have any acknowledged Targaryen bastards in the 1st century doesn't cause that much of a problem there (baseborn children are not all that often acknowledged by their noble parents) although the disposition of the men in charge of Dragonstone in the 1st century makes it not that likely that many such children were fathered in those years (see above).

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On 10/31/2019 at 2:16 PM, Alyn Oakenfist said:

So reading Fire&Blood it pretty clear that Addam and Alyn Velaryon are Corlys's sons. Now since Addam is a dragon rider and doesn't have any Targaryen ancestry that we know of, does that mean Velaryons can ride dragons?

Interesting. We know that the Velaryons were of Valerian background but the family did not ride dragons pre conquest. We dont know why. Because the cou'dn't? Because the didnt have any dragons? Because there was some restriction in Valerian society as to which families were allowed to own dragons?

They seem to have married Targaryans before the conquest so any of them could have Targaryan ancestry if that was a necessary condition for dragon riding.

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On 10/31/2019 at 4:38 PM, Alyn Oakenfist said:

Well the only Targ ancestor of Corlys that we know of is before the conquest, and we know that Targ ancestry alone isn't enough as Quentyn proved. And it makes a lot of difference if they were Corlys's or Leanor's since Leanor's mother was Rhaenys Targaryen. However since Laenor was gay, I think it's doubtful that they were his. So if Addam was Corlys's, which he probably was, and his last Targ ancestor was since before the Conquest, (we know what every Targ did inbetween) doesn't this prove that Velaryons (or at least Velaryons after conquest) can ride dragons? (btw can you imagine how much cooler Corlys would have been if he had rode a dragon? Not even The Rogue Prince would be as cool)

But Quentyn's Targ ancestral blood comes from a Targ several generations back, and none before that. The Velyarions were not a dragonriding family in Valyria. But ever since the Targs settled on Dragonstone, the Velaryons were the sole ones they seemed to intermarry with regularly if there was no alternative. So, since the doom, the Velaryons have been adding Targ ancestry several times into their blood, which is far more than Quentyn's drop. If we go by Brown Ben Plumm two drops several generations ago can work though.

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On 11/18/2019 at 8:21 PM, sweetsunray said:

But Quentyn's Targ ancestral blood comes from a Targ several generations back, and none before that. The Velyarions were not a dragonriding family in Valyria. But ever since the Targs settled on Dragonstone, the Velaryons were the sole ones they seemed to intermarry with regularly if there was no alternative. So, since the doom, the Velaryons have been adding Targ ancestry several times into their blood, which is far more than Quentyn's drop. If we go by Brown Ben Plumm two drops several generations ago can work though.

And Quentyn's failure is not proof in and off itself. Its very possible he did in fact have enough Targ blood to mount a dragon, as his taming of Viserion seemed to be going fine. It was ignoring the second dragon that caused his death.

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12 minutes ago, Adam Yozza said:

And Quentyn's failure is not proof in and off itself. Its very possible he did in fact have enough Targ blood to mount a dragon, as his taming of Viserion seemed to be going fine. It was ignoring the second dragon that caused his death.

I used to think that the taming of Viserion seemed to be going fine, but narrow re-read made me decide aginst it. While Viserion is not as aggressive as Rhaegal, he's not very much interested in listening to Quentyn either and twice we are told wisps of smoke come out of his nostrils (a sign he's thinking of flaming Quentyn for trying to command him). And when Quentyn whips him he hisses. Before we learn Viserion's ultimate response to this, Rhaegal intervenes and burns Quentyn.

Edited by sweetsunray

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Perhaps a drop of dragonblood is necessary but not sufficient. Perhaps the "purity" of the dragonblood is not the critical factor. Perhaps it's just an "X-factor." The Oakenfist couldn't ride a dragon,  but his twin could. Perhaps the Oakenfist just didn't have that "X-factor."

Edited by Lost Melnibonean

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Quentyn and Dany are essentially not far apart. Rhaegal roasted Quentyn, Viserion did not but may have roasted Quentyn if Rhaegal hadn't beaten him to it ... and Drogon tried to roast Dany but failed.

If Dany was so in danger while trying to mount a dragon she knew from both (and who she actually magically woke from stone) then I don't see much difference between her attempt and Quentyn's - especially since basically both Dany and Quentyn try to claim their dragons under equally dangerous circumstances. Drogon is disturbed while feeding and attacked by humans, Viserion and Rhaegal are imprisoned and disturbed by Quentyn and his gang. They not in the mood to accept new riders - which is why it was a very dangerous game for both Dany and Quentyn.

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I am of the mind that any one with the proper knowledge and/or bravado anyone can ride a dragon under the right circumstance, but to the question it doesn't matter that they would have to have Targaryen blood as the Valeryon's are from Old Valyria. There is much about there history we do not know. They could have once been Dragon Riders in Old Valyria. I have always wondered this about them. Like when and why did they go to Westeros. There histories say they came to the west before the Targ's. I like to think they fled so other Families wrath to the west a long while before the Targ's and that maybe just maybe they did it on a dragon or that maybe they were part of the Valyrian force that scouted the west for any trade routes. They even could have helped build battle island. I am just saying this story is so open ended that there are way more possibilities for Dragon Riding than just being a Targ.

 

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1 hour ago, The Mountain that Cries said:

I am of the mind that any one with the proper knowledge and/or bravado anyone can ride a dragon under the right circumstance, but to the question it doesn't matter that they would have to have Targaryen blood as the Valeryon's are from Old Valyria. There is much about there history we do not know. They could have once been Dragon Riders in Old Valyria. I have always wondered this about them. Like when and why did they go to Westeros. There histories say they came to the west before the Targ's. I like to think they fled so other Families wrath to the west a long while before the Targ's and that maybe just maybe they did it on a dragon or that maybe they were part of the Valyrian force that scouted the west for any trade routes. They even could have helped build battle island. I am just saying this story is so open ended that there are way more possibilities for Dragon Riding than just being a Targ.

As far as we know there were no Velaryon dragonriders before Laenor and Laena and they were not a dragonlord family back in Old Valyria.

To become a dragonrider you seem to be needing dragonlord blood, but that's actually quite cheap. In Westeros not that many people have dragonlord ancestors (although there are many such on Dragonstone) although the Unworthy did his best to change that, but in the Free Cities Valyrian blood is still prominent. Many nobles there (and even more slaves in Lys) should have dragonlord blood, and not in small quantities. We learn in FaB that Jaehaerys I feared that triarchs of Volantis could become dragonlords if they could lay their hands on living dragons.

It is exceptional for a Westerosi to become a dragonrider - but for an Essosi in territory once conquered and ruled by the Valyrian it should actually be a trivial thing. Although very few such people are very likely to ever try to mount a dragon considering that they are no longer around.

In fact, when thinking about a rider for any of Dany's dragons then some Volantene or Lyseni has about as a much a chance as Brown Ben Plumm, Tyrion, Victarion, Aegon, or Jon Snow.

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On 10/31/2019 at 4:38 PM, Alyn Oakenfist said:

Well the only Targ ancestor of Corlys that we know of is before the conquest, and we know that Targ ancestry alone isn't enough as Quentyn proved. And it makes a lot of difference if they were Corlys's or Leanor's since Leanor's mother was Rhaenys Targaryen. However since Laenor was gay, I think it's doubtful that they were his. So if Addam was Corlys's, which he probably was, and his last Targ ancestor was since before the Conquest, (we know what every Targ did inbetween) doesn't this prove that Velaryons (or at least Velaryons after conquest) can ride dragons? (btw can you imagine how much cooler Corlys would have been if he had rode a dragon? Not even The Rogue Prince would be as cool)

Quentyn was taming his dragon,  Viserion was reacting positively to him but any dragonrider can go against one dragon at a time, taking on Viserion while Rhaegal was there was suicidal.

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Fire and Blood did more to convince me that familiarity is the key to dragonriding, than possession of magical Dragonlord blood - not to say that the Targs don't have magic, but their gift is prophetic dreaming as seen with Daenaerys the Dreamer, Daeron the Drunk and latently in Aemon, Dany and Jon.

 

The maesters and others in-world take for granted that only Targs can  be dragonriders, and therefore take dragonriding as proof that a person is a dragonseed. Nettles and Sheepsteeler challenge that assumption, that is the only feral dragon that has been ridden and she succeeded by feeding it enough to gain familiarity, with no hint she is actually of Targ blood.

I think the chances of successful dragonriding are in order, familiarity through having the hatchling impress upon the future rider and spending early years being handfed, familiarity by being blood related to an earlier rider, familiarity by acclimatisation through feeding the dragon. After the doom the Targs were the only owners of dragons and gifted viable eggs only within their own family, perpetuating the cycle.

Addam of Hull rode Seasmoke, who was previously Laenor Velaryon's dragon. So if Addam were actually the Sea Snake's and possessed no Targ blood, he would still have been the half-brother of the dragon's previous rider, explaining his success.

Danny's dragons are all impressed on her, and although Quentyn was related to her it is some generations back, perhaps enough to explain the dragons hesitating though it was not enough to save him.

 

 

 

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If they are all descendants of the same ancestor / family, probably can ride a dragon like any targaryen, the targaryens saw no problem mixing their blood with theirs, that should indicate that they can. 

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On 12/23/2019 at 10:23 AM, Buried Treasure said:

Fire and Blood did more to convince me that familiarity is the key to dragonriding, than possession of magical Dragonlord blood - not to say that the Targs don't have magic, but their gift is prophetic dreaming as seen with Daenaerys the Dreamer, Daeron the Drunk and latently in Aemon, Dany and Jon.

Nah, familiarity is definitely revealed to not help you ride a dragon. Joffrey Velaryon did know his mother's dragon Syrax very well, yet he was rejected by her with lethal consequences. None of the dragonseed dragonriders were servants or Dragonkeepers familiar with the dragons kept on Dragonstone, none of Rhaena's favorites and friends who often rode with her on Dreamfyre ever claimed any of the riderless dragons on Dragonstone, etc.

On 12/23/2019 at 10:23 AM, Buried Treasure said:

The maesters and others in-world take for granted that only Targs can  be dragonriders, and therefore take dragonriding as proof that a person is a dragonseed. Nettles and Sheepsteeler challenge that assumption, that is the only feral dragon that has been ridden and she succeeded by feeding it enough to gain familiarity, with no hint she is actually of Targ blood.

Nettles is the bastard of of a dockside whore whose father is unknown (meaning she could have a Targaryen father, say, Daemon Targaryen) and she is a Driftmarkian by birth which means she could have nearly as much dragonlord blood as the average Targaryen considering the fact that the Targaryens of the past spread their seed rather freely on the islands they controlled, not to mention that a siginficant portion of the smallfolk living both on Dragonstone and Driftmark may have come to those islands from Valyria with the Velaryons of old, the dragonlords raising the citadel of Dragonstone, and eventually Aenar the Exile.

If Nettles had been some Ironborn, Northern, Western, etc. girl with no ties whatsoever to Dragonstone or Driftmark you might have a point - as it stands Nettles is no different from Ulf, Hugh and Addam of Hull. The sole difference with her is that she knew how to calm a wild dragon who was not accustomed to the presence of humans - but this does not help you claim a dragon. That's something that comes after you convince the dragon not to roast you on sight. And that's something not everybody can do ... else a lot of commoners would be dragonriders since, well, forever.

On 12/23/2019 at 10:23 AM, Buried Treasure said:

I think the chances of successful dragonriding are in order, familiarity through having the hatchling impress upon the future rider and spending early years being handfed, familiarity by being blood related to an earlier rider, familiarity by acclimatisation through feeding the dragon. After the doom the Targs were the only owners of dragons and gifted viable eggs only within their own family, perpetuating the cycle.

But not that many Targaryens actually claimed hatchlings they were familiar with. The egg thing only started rather late. Some were given hatchlings - Aenys, Rhaena, possibly Jaehaerys and Alysanne - but Jaehaerys I's dragonriding children just went to the Dragonpit one day and claimed one of the dragons there, without forging some kind of bond before. And there is no indication the Targaryens ever cared about handfeeding and other such things - they had their servants for that kind of thing.

On 12/23/2019 at 10:23 AM, Buried Treasure said:

Addam of Hull rode Seasmoke, who was previously Laenor Velaryon's dragon. So if Addam were actually the Sea Snake's and possessed no Targ blood, he would still have been the half-brother of the dragon's previous rider, explaining his success.

As the Sea Snake's son Addam would also have had some Targaryen blood. It would have been very diluted, of course, but it would have still been there. And Hugh and Ulf likely also didn't have Targaryen grandparents or great-grandparents but had Targaryen ancestors somewhat further down their family tree.

On 12/23/2019 at 10:23 AM, Buried Treasure said:

Danny's dragons are all impressed on her, and although Quentyn was related to her it is some generations back, perhaps enough to explain the dragons hesitating though it was not enough to save him.

Quentyn never got to know the dragons under pleasant circumstances. They were imprisoned, not the ideal environment. Ben Plumm, who seems to have as much Targaryen blood or even a tidbit more than Quentyn, got to know them under more ideal circumstances and they very much liked him.

I mean, you do have to keep in mind that Drogon nearly kills Daenerys in ADwD. Being the Mother of Dragons doesn't help you with them if you mistreat the dragons or try to imprison them. Not to mention if they see you as a threat to their health and well-being.

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I agree that the blood of a dragon is probably needed as most examples of dragon riders are clearly from dragon-lord stock but we are also shown that serf's or common people can ride dragon's. With knowing that i believe that The Targ's created the Myth of Dragonblood being needed to ride. This may sound crazy but it help them maintain control of the kingdom through threat and gives more strength to political offers of marriage as most lords would give anything for a dragon and to these same lords linage is everything. They already believe in blood right's and adding dragon's to that is a huge bonus. It also might give more weight to the measters conspiracy.  Happy New Year 

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