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Nathan Stark

Dany's dragons did NOT cause magic to return

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Many of us take it at face value that magic left the world the day the last dragons died. The logical conclusion would then be that the birth of Danaerys Targaryen's dragons caused magic to return. This is even stated or implied by characters in the text, most notably Quaithe. 

There is no doubt that the birth of Dany's dragons is easily the absolute height of magic so far in ASOIAF. Everything magical that happens afterward is nowhere close to being as awe-inspiring and strange and wonderful and horrifying as the birth of Dany's dragons. But they did not cause magic to return.

There are three magical events that take place before Dany lit her fateful pyre. 

- Will, Gared, and Waymar encountering the Others in the prologue.

- Bran being visited in his sleep by the three-eyed-crow.

- Mirri Maz Duur invoking blood magic to "save" Khal Drogo's life.

So when we think about the role of magic in the ASOIAF universe, I believe that dragons being in the world is an effect of magic, not a cause of it. I think that the truth is a little more complicated, in classic GRRM style. When the last dragons died, it was fire magic that went out of the world, or at least was severely weakened. I think it is notable that all of the examples used to show how the dragons brought magic back are all related to fire magic.

Thoughts?

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Posted (edited)

I think that there was still basic magic, but the dragons allowed more advanced magic to return. I cannot back this up, but that's what I think. 

Edited by Jaenara Belarys

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yeah there were still dreamers like Egg's brother. I'd agree with Jaenera that dragons are more like world magic or fire magic catalysts, not the source. otherwise maybe there are some hidden or hibernating dragon during the the period between Dragon'sbane and dany. Remember the sections at dragons stone were someone (i think Davos) pondered if the stone dragons were really sculptures or not...

Also if there are Ice Dragons still Skagos and The Wall itself make for interesting markers.

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37 minutes ago, Targaryeninkingslanding said:

yeah there were still dreamers like Egg's brother. I'd agree with Jaenera that dragons are more like world magic or fire magic catalysts, not the source. otherwise maybe there are some hidden or hibernating dragon during the the period between Dragon'sbane and dany. Remember the sections at dragons stone were someone (i think Davos) pondered if the stone dragons were really sculptures or not...

 

"Lord Freeholder" Jaenera please, :) . But yes, I agree. 

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I think the Hinges of the World as wellsprings of magic might have something to do with it.  The Wall is one of the hinges of the world according to Mel.  She tells Jon he can access it's power if he chooses.  The icey hinge.  The fiery hinge may be the Smoking Sea ringed by volcanos in Valyria.  Moqorro says men are small and there is a danger in delving too deeply into those fires.  The result being the Doom.  Dragons and White Walkers may be connected to these sources.

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24 minutes ago, LynnS said:

I think the Hinges of the World as wellsprings of magic might have something to do with it.  The Wall is one of the hinges of the world according to Mel.  She tells Jon he can access it's power if he chooses.  The icey hinge.  The fiery hinge may be the Smoking Sea ringed by volcanos in Valyria.  Moqorro says men are small and there is a danger in delving too deeply into those fires.  The result being the Doom.  Dragons and White Walkers may be connected to these sources.

That's something to think about....

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The return of the dragons only affected fire/Valyrian magic in a meaningful way, not magic in general. But in that case it is not just correlation, it seems to be causation.

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I see dragons as a indicator of level of "magic". Or I assume that they could not exist until there was enough available "magic". So Planetos is now changing from world where magical beings like dragons could not survive to much more chaotic place where magic and beings who use or even need it to survive will become much more common and powerful.

 

10 hours ago, Nathan Stark said:

I believe that dragons being in the world is an effect of magic, not a cause of it.

:agree:

I suspect that availability of magic follows some kind of cycle. Or there has been many times when dragons had existed in Westeros but those died out when level of magic became too low to support them.

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This idea has been discussed before: that there is a "tide" of magical energy that goes in and out, with the complete cycle taking centuries. The dragons are an effect, not a cause, just like the glass candles that are burning again, the increased production of wildfire, the return of the Others, etc. I've always thought that this was the case. It didn't make sense to me that three little animals could be the source of all the magical phenomena all over the known world. 

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14 hours ago, Jaenara Belarys said:

That's something to think about....

I question whether white walkers and dragons are conduits or amplifiers of magic. 

Quote

A Feast for Crows - Samwell I

"Long ago," Jon broke in. "What about the Others?"

"I found mention of dragonglass. The children of the forest used to give the Night's Watch a hundred obsidian daggers every year, during the Age of Heroes. The Others come when it is cold, most of the tales agree. Or else it gets cold when they come. Sometimes they appear during snowstorms and melt away when the skies clear. They hide from the light of the sun and emerge by night . . . or else night falls when they emerge. Some stories speak of them riding the corpses of dead animals. Bears, direwolves, mammoths, horses, it makes no matter, so long as the beast is dead. The one that killed Small Paul was riding a dead horse, so that part's plainly true. Some accounts speak of giant ice spiders too. I don't know what those are. Men who fall in battle against the Others must be burned, or else the dead will rise again as their thralls."

So do WW generate the cold or come with the cold?  You could probably ask a similar question about dragons.

We do know from Quaithe, that she attributes the return of dragons with an increase in the ability to use fire magic:
 

Quote

 

A Clash of Kings - Daenerys III

When the fiery ladder stood forty feet high, the mage leapt forward and began to climb it, scrambling up hand over hand as quick as a monkey. Each rung he touched dissolved behind him, leaving no more than a wisp of silver smoke. When he reached the top, the ladder was gone and so was he.

"A fine trick," announced Jhogo with admiration.

"No trick," a woman said in the Common Tongue.

Dany had not noticed Quaithe in the crowd, yet there she stood, eyes wet and shiny behind the implacable red lacquer mask. "What mean you, my lady?"

"Half a year gone, that man could scarcely wake fire from dragonglass. He had some small skill with powders and wildfire, sufficient to entrance a crowd while his cutpurses did their work. He could walk across hot coals and make burning roses bloom in the air, but he could no more aspire to climb the fiery ladder than a common fisherman could hope to catch a kraken in his nets."

Dany looked uneasily at where the ladder had stood. Even the smoke was gone now, and the crowd was breaking up, each man going about his business. In a moment more than a few would find their purses flat and empty. "And now?"

"And now his powers grow, Khaleesi. And you are the cause of it."

"Me?" She laughed. "How could that be?"

The woman stepped closer and lay two fingers on Dany's wrist. "You are the Mother of Dragons, are you not?"

 

Add to that, Mirri Maz Duur waking the old powers.  So now magical powers are growing among those who use them.  

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21 hours ago, Lord Varys said:

The return of the dragons only affected fire/Valyrian magic in a meaningful way, not magic in general. But in that case it is not just correlation, it seems to be causation.

I do think the birth of the dragons re-ignited fire magic. Other branches of magic seem to have been at least somewhat active, but it seems fire magic was exeedingly weak until Dany's dragons were born.

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I've toyed with the idea of the return of magic(enabling the return of the dragons) being tied in with the Others resurgence. Haven't been able to quite line up how the dragons of old line up with that unless they were always fading throughout history until they were gone. 

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I believe that dragons strengthen magic, and that the more magical beings there are in the world the more powerful the magic becomes.

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There are two types of magic.  Ice magic,which is the magic of the Others and Starks, were always present.  Death is always present.  Cold is the absence of warmth.  The Red Comet is fire magic.  The Red Comet brought the fire magic back at about the same time when Daenerys was reborn into Azor Ahai.  Fire magic has to return in order to protect life from the cold.  Cold brings death.  Fire vs. Ice. 

 

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On 5/7/2021 at 9:18 PM, Nathan Stark said:

Many of us take it at face value that magic left the world the day the last dragons died. The logical conclusion would then be that the birth of Danaerys Targaryen's dragons caused magic to return. This is even stated or implied by characters in the text, most notably Quaithe. 

What the death of dragons affected was fire magic.

For example, the death of dragons did not affect the number of greenseers and skinchangers. The amount from them narrowed a long ago, or so it would seem.

On 5/7/2021 at 9:18 PM, Nathan Stark said:

There is no doubt that the birth of Dany's dragons is easily the absolute height of magic so far in ASOIAF. Everything magical that happens afterward is nowhere close to being as awe-inspiring and strange and wonderful and horrifying as the birth of Dany's dragons. But they did not cause magic to return.

We might say the return of dragons expanded the presence of fire magic, and magic in general too, but that one only at a very low extent. However: either the dragons or Daenerys herself are responsible for this part, even if she isn't TPTWP.

On 5/7/2021 at 9:18 PM, Nathan Stark said:

Will, Gared, and Waymar encountering the Others in the prologue.

Rangers were dissapearing even before them, and the free folk know about them even before. If you mean the Others beginning to return in general, then yes, this might be what triggered the return of the dragons. But then there's also no explanation on why they returned now, unless there's a third party one can call gods or whatever else.

On 5/7/2021 at 9:18 PM, Nathan Stark said:

Bran being visited in his sleep by the three-eyed-crow.

Also seems to be one piece in this cataclystic chain of events. Bloodraven always had the power to do so, and he's not that superior of an entity, altough pretty (and I mean pretty) powerful he is.

On 5/7/2021 at 9:18 PM, Nathan Stark said:

Mirri Maz Duur invoking blood magic to "save" Khal Drogo's life.

Doesn't explain the reappearance of the WW and the rebirth of dragons.

On 5/7/2021 at 9:18 PM, Nathan Stark said:

So when we think about the role of magic in the ASOIAF universe, I believe that dragons being in the world is an effect of magic, not a cause of it. I think that the truth is a little more complicated, in classic GRRM style. When the last dragons died, it was fire magic that went out of the world, or at least was severely weakened. I think it is notable that all of the examples used to show how the dragons brought magic back are all related to fire magic.

Thoughts?

I intend to make a very-very ling post sbout magic (including literally everything), but it's not done yet.  Otherwise, I find it too complicated amd long to just write it down here.

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39 minutes ago, Daeron the Daring said:

I intend to make a very-very ling post sbout magic (including literally everything), but it's not done yet.  Otherwise, I find it too complicated amd long to just write it down here.

Oh Great!  That will be interesting.

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2 hours ago, Daeron the Daring said:

Yea, but I better learn how to write on my phone first.:rolleyes:

Enjoy, ser. For thou thumbs shalt be sore. 

23 hours ago, Nathan Stark said:

I do think the birth of the dragons re-ignited fire magic. Other branches of magic seem to have been at least somewhat active, but it seems fire magic was exeedingly weak until Dany's dragons were born.

Don't the dragons have something to do with how long winter and summer is? 

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Posted (edited)
On 5/7/2021 at 12:18 PM, Nathan Stark said:

Many of us take it at face value that magic left the world the day the last dragons died. The logical conclusion would then be that the birth of Danaerys Targaryen's dragons caused magic to return. This is even stated or implied by characters in the text, most notably Quaithe. 

There is no doubt that the birth of Dany's dragons is easily the absolute height of magic so far in ASOIAF. Everything magical that happens afterward is nowhere close to being as awe-inspiring and strange and wonderful and horrifying as the birth of Dany's dragons. But they did not cause magic to return.

There are three magical events that take place before Dany lit her fateful pyre. 

- Will, Gared, and Waymar encountering the Others in the prologue.

- Bran being visited in his sleep by the three-eyed-crow.

- Mirri Maz Duur invoking blood magic to "save" Khal Drogo's life.

So when we think about the role of magic in the ASOIAF universe, I believe that dragons being in the world is an effect of magic, not a cause of it. I think that the truth is a little more complicated, in classic GRRM style. When the last dragons died, it was fire magic that went out of the world, or at least was severely weakened. I think it is notable that all of the examples used to show how the dragons brought magic back are all related to fire magic.

Thoughts?

well the others showed up first chronoligically

I don't know what that means thematically or on like a larger scale but I think its relevant 

Edited by Orion2
butt

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