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Garth Greenhand and his children

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What was the true nature of Garth Greenhand and his children? We have three options, they were either a pantheon of gods (real or otherwise), extraordinary humans living in mythical times, or simply notable humans (without magic) who have been re-worked and mythicised through the ages.

In my opinion they were semi-magical humans who lived during the dawn age allowing them to be developed into a pantheon that was worshiped in the Reach. This is interesting because it's rather exceptional evidence of an 'old gods' esq religion with a named and developed mythos and divine figures. Garth himself and some of his children fit mythological tropes. Garth is clearly a Green-Man figure, an earth 'father' which is an interesting spin on the 'earth mother'. Florys the Fox reads as your typical trickster deity, Gilbert of the Vines could be a Dionysus esq figure or a god of agriculture. John the Oak reads as a war god, and Harlon the hunter as quite obviously a god of the hunt. It isn't as clean cut as each god residing over different aspects of life, rather a race of divine beings who fall in and out of patronages by region perhaps. 

I enjoy these stories a lot because they add regional identity to the Reach, something I find underdeveloped in the world building. 

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My guess would be that Garth was the Jaehaerys of the Reach, a very good king with a lot of children. He and his children were probably then mythologized and from the houses that resulted and their separate mythologies came the pantheon of Garth Greenhand.

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11 hours ago, Alyn Oakenfist said:

My guess would be that Garth was the Jaehaerys of the Reach, a very good king with a lot of children. He and his children were probably then mythologized and from the houses that resulted and their separate mythologies came the pantheon of Garth Greenhand.

I’d imagine that Garth ‘Goldenhand’ would be the Jaehaerys of the reach 

https://awoiaf.westeros.org/index.php/Garth_VII_Gardener

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They way that Martin writes the Age of Heroes defiitely seems like a very old age that people have turned into legend and the houses use to consolidate their power. Garth Greenhand was probably the King that united the Reach. His chlidren (maybe they weren't even all his true children but he fostered and influenced many of them) ruled parts of his Kingdom and as time passed they became legends because it's far easier to consolidate your power over the plebs when you decent from a legendary mythical figure. Ptolemy stole Alexander the Great's corpse and burried him in Alexandia next to the first Ptolemy and claimed that they were decendants (he just was one of his generals) so that they could increase their power and hold of Egypt (since Alexander the Great was considered a god-tier figure back then).

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He was an extraordinary human living during the times of gods.  Stories like his are comparable to the biblical stories of the patriarchs. He was like a Methuselah.  A man who lived long ago and said to have magic abilities.  

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3 hours ago, Dreadscythe95 said:

Ptolemy stole Alexander the Great's corpse and burried him in Alexandia next to the first Ptolemy and claimed that they were decendants (he just was one of his generals) so that they could increase their power and hold of Egypt (since Alexander the Great was considered a god-tier figure back then).

To be fair, from what we know of Alexander’s father, Philip, I think it’s quite plausible that Ptolemy could have been Philip’s illegitimate son and Alexander’s bastard half brother. It also means that we get a real life scenario of Jon Snow becoming one of Robb Stark’s most trusted generals and bodyguards, only to become king after Robb’s death.

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Posted (edited)
5 hours ago, James Steller said:

To be fair, from what we know of Alexander’s father, Philip, I think it’s quite plausible that Ptolemy could have been Philip’s illegitimate son and Alexander’s bastard half brother. It also means that we get a real life scenario of Jon Snow becoming one of Robb Stark’s most trusted generals and bodyguards, only to become king after Robb’s death.

the biggest theory is that he was not a son of Philip but yes there is that claim. Olympias, his mother, would probably have never let him live if he was a son of Philip though since he would be a danger for her son's reign but who knows. What makes this claim stronger is that he stole the body from Seleucus and took it to Alexandria. His son was the one that made the blood claims and burried them together. So it feels more like a clear political move. Anyway the point I made is the same, The House of Ptolemy used Alexander as mythical figure to secure their reign.

Edited by Dreadscythe95

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1 hour ago, Dreadscythe95 said:

the biggest theory is that he was not a son of Philip but yes there is that claim. Olympias, his mother, would probably have never let him leave if he was a son of Philip though since he would be a danger for her son's reign but who knows. What makes this claim stronger is that he stole the body from Seleucus and took it to Alexandria. His son was the one that made the blood claims and burried them together. So it feels more like a clear political move. Anyway the point I made is the same, The House of Ptolemy used Alexander as mythical figure to secure their reign.

Wait, what’s the biggest theory then? The only theory I’ve ever found claims Ptolemy is the son of Arsinoe and Philip II, though Philip married Arsinoe off to a minor nobleman names Lagus when she was still pregnant. Is there another one?

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1 hour ago, James Steller said:

Wait, what’s the biggest theory then? The only theory I’ve ever found claims Ptolemy is the son of Arsinoe and Philip II, though Philip married Arsinoe off to a minor nobleman names Lagus when she was still pregnant. Is there another one?

No, the biggest theory os that he is the son of Arsinoe and a nobleman, not Philip. The Ptolemies later claimed that the father was Philip to create a bond between them and Alexander the Great, making them the rightful rulers of Egypt. At least thats what I know (fun fact I am Greek but I don't use it as an excuse because it's not an evidence that I know history better than you).

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Posted (edited)
6 minutes ago, Dreadscythe95 said:

No, the biggest theory os that he is the son of Arsinoe and a nobleman, not Philip. The Ptolemies later claimed that the father was Philip to create a bond between them and Alexander the Great, making them the rightful rulers of Egypt. At least thats what I know (fun fact I am Greek but I don't use it as an excuse because it's not an evidence that I know history better than you).

Oh I see. I was confused by what you were saying. I thought you were implying that there was a theory which claimed that Ptolemy was related to Alexander in a way that was not connected to his father.

And yes, it’s probably true that Ptolemy wasn’t related to Alexander but was just the son of Lagus and Arsinoe. But a part of me really would like to believe that it’s true that he was Philip’s bastard son. If nothing else, it adds a new layer to the close bond he had with Alexander when Alex was alive.

Edited by James Steller

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2 hours ago, James Steller said:

Oh I see. I was confused by what you were saying. I thought you were implying that there was a theory which claimed that Ptolemy was related to Alexander in a way that was not connected to his father.

And yes, it’s probably true that Ptolemy wasn’t related to Alexander but was just the son of Lagus and Arsinoe. But a part of me really would like to believe that it’s true that he was Philip’s bastard son. If nothing else, it adds a new layer to the close bond he had with Alexander when Alex was alive.

Yeah it feels so Aegon Targaryen and Orys Baratheon. Are you a historian though? You seem to know so much in detail.

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3 hours ago, Dreadscythe95 said:

Yeah it feels so Aegon Targaryen and Orys Baratheon. Are you a historian though? You seem to know so much in detail.

I’m not a historian by profession, but I spent four years studying history. I also wrote about historical topics on Factinate for two years. It’s always been a subject I’ve been interested in.

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On 5/22/2020 at 3:44 AM, James Steller said:

I’m not a historian by profession, but I spent four years studying history. I also wrote about historical topics on Factinate for two years. It’s always been a subject I’ve been interested in.

Keep up the good work man, it's obvious you know a lot.

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Posted (edited)
On 5/21/2020 at 11:43 AM, Dreadscythe95 said:

What makes this claim stronger is that he stole the body from Seleucus and took it to Alexandria. His son was the one that made the blood claims and burried them together. So it feels more like a clear political move. Anyway the point I made is the same, The House of Ptolemy used Alexander as mythical figure to secure their reign.

Ptolemy actually stole the body from Perdicas, the regent for Alexander’s infant son on its way back to Macedonia. Seleucus was below Ptolemy, Perdicas or Antigonus in rank. Seleucus and also Lysamachus (eventual king of Macedon and Thrace) actually gained power and influence by rebelling and killing there commander Perdicas after he failed to recover the body and invade Egypt. Subsequently loosing high casualties to Ptolemy and nile crocodiles.

Its interesting because Seluecus became the head of Ptolemies army in his war for Egyptian independence against Antigonus I Monophthalmus attempt to reconquer or reunite Alexander’s empire. Ptolemy then supported Seluecus in retaking his satrapy of Babylon before he went on reconquering almost the entirety of Alexander’s Empire excluding Egypt. These two respective dynasties would be at almost constant war for the next two hundred and fifty years. 

The war of the Diadochi was really the Hellenistic version of game of thrones. I find the Ptolemaic dynasty fascinating and I am a big fan of the first three Ptolemies and believe they could stand toe to toe with any Roman emperor in terms of accomplishment except for maybe Augustus.

Edited by The Merling King

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On 5/24/2020 at 5:19 AM, The Merling King said:

The war of the Diadochi was really the Hellenistic version of game of thrones. I find the Ptolemaic dynasty fascinating and I am a big fan of the first three Ptolemies and believe they could stand toe to toe with any Roman emperor in terms of accomplishment except for maybe Augustus.

Yeah thats true. Cleopatra is very underrated as well.

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Garth and his children are extremelyi important to the progress of Westeros. His children were founders of many famous houses of the reach. But the 2 main ones people need to pay attention to is:

Brandon of the Bloody Blade and Rose of Red Lake.

These 2 are the most important children

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The story about Garth and his children is what whe think about mythology now: it contains historic events but not 100% acvurate. Probably Garth was a First Man great king and his children were leaders of First Men factions who followed him and not literal children. Or even they were a series of leaders with the same name (like all the Brandons, Durrans, Garths that ruled later) and their actions are mixed to one person.

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I think it's interesting that House Stark is the only House outside the Reach that can claim direct descent from Garth Greenhand. I'm not counting Lann the Clever because the "information" around him is a bit confusing. 

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