Jump to content

Random Thoughts About ASOIAF


Recommended Posts

57 minutes ago, SeanF said:

A friend who’s very good at geography worked it out, on the basis that the Wall is 300 miles long.

Does he know how long it should take to travel from, say, Winterfell to King’s Landing? Because everyone seems to move way too fast in ASOIAF.

Link to comment
Share on other sites

11 minutes ago, The Bard of Banefort said:

Does he know how long it should take to travel from, say, Winterfell to King’s Landing? Because everyone seems to move way too fast in ASOIAF.

I think the issue is that GRRM thought in American scale in numbers but in ~British scale in practicalities. (And Western Europe in flavour/culture).

Edited by James Arryn
Link to comment
Share on other sites

29 minutes ago, James Arryn said:

I think the issue is that GRRM thought in American scale in numbers but in ~British scale in practicalities. (And Western Europe in flavour/culture).

One really interesting thing about Westeros is that the geography is basically the same as North America, just molded to resemble Britain. There’s the North (Canada and Alaska), Vale (northeast), King’s Landing (Washington D.C.), Stormlands (the Carolinas), and Dorne (Texas and Mexico). All the way on the other side of the country are the Westerlands (California —> gold rush), and then there’s the Riverlands (Great Lakes) between the North and Reach (heartland —> bread basket). The only thing missing are the Iron Islands. Maybe they could be attributed to the Aleutian Islands, but they’re arguably colder than the Iron Islands. I’m curious if this was all unconscious on George’s part.

Link to comment
Share on other sites

2 hours ago, The Bard of Banefort said:

One really interesting thing about Westeros is that the geography is basically the same as North America, just molded to resemble Britain. There’s the North (Canada and Alaska), Vale (northeast), King’s Landing (Washington D.C.), Stormlands (the Carolinas), and Dorne (Texas and Mexico). All the way on the other side of the country are the Westerlands (California —> gold rush), and then there’s the Riverlands (Great Lakes) between the North and Reach (heartland —> bread basket). The only thing missing are the Iron Islands. Maybe they could be attributed to the Aleutian Islands, but they’re arguably colder than the Iron Islands. I’m curious if this was all unconscious on George’s part.

Word!

I thought of Canada and Alaska as more a beyond the wall type, being not America (except for Alaska, and North America being "America") and huge. The North, being the first settlers (except for the indigenous) is kinda like New England, being the first settlers (again aside from the indigenous, and the Spanish and Virginians but for some reason we don't talk about that) and being kinda rigid and stern (think "WASPS" or Starks), plus it's mad cold there. The Vale I'd put for Virginia and Maryland, historically they were a pompous bunch and dictated the countries polices for years but now they kinda fell back, plus mountains. Stormland is totally Carolina, like it's always raining there lol. Dorne as Texas isnt bad, though I was thinking Florida ( which uh also isn't known for being a bastion of independent thought) just mainly because of oranges, but both Texas and Florida are pretty diverse just like Dorne. Definitely agree with the rest, Riverlands is Ohio/Illinois/Wisconsin area, Reach is Kansas like and Westernlands gotta be Cali.

IronIslands are, Hawaii? Lol

But you left out a kingdom, and my favorite state ;)

Dragonstone, truly a bastion of independent thought, although not on the continent and with a different origin story with it's sister kingdoms it was still part of the Westerosi nation on day 1 (looking at you FL/TX). A little east, off shore from the continent, is an island whose architecture is synemonous with Westeros, it's marvel skyscrapers rival the greats of Castelry Rock (Goldengate) or the Red Keep in KL (white house). Truly, the Empire State. Uh, kingdom ;)

Edited by Hugorfonics
Link to comment
Share on other sites

6 hours ago, The Bard of Banefort said:

Does he know how long it should take to travel from, say, Winterfell to King’s Landing? Because everyone seems to move way too fast in ASOIAF.

It’s about 1,500 miles from Kings Landing to Winterfell, and Cersei said it took them a month.  Which is much too fast for a convoy of wagons.  15 miles a day would be more realistic.  A party of horsemen with remounts could do 50 miles a day.  

Link to comment
Share on other sites

7 minutes ago, SeanF said:

It’s about 1,500 miles from Kings Landing to Winterfell, and Cersei said it took them a month.  Which is much too fast for a convoy of wagons.  15 miles a day would be more realistic.  A party of horsemen with remounts could do 50 miles a day.  

Oh God.

Did I just walk into a ASOIAF geography discussion?!

AAAAAAAAAAAAAAAAAAAAAAAAAAAAAAAAAAAAAAAAAAAAAAAAA

Link to comment
Share on other sites

3 hours ago, Hugorfonics said:

Word!

I thought of Canada and Alaska as more a beyond the wall type, being not America (except for Alaska, and North America being "America") and huge. The North, being the first settlers (except for the indigenous) is kinda like New England, being the first settlers (again aside from the indigenous, and the Spanish and Virginians but for some reason we don't talk about that) and being kinda rigid and stern (think "WASPS" or Starks), plus it's mad cold there. The Vale I'd put for Virginia and Maryland, historically they were a pompous bunch and dictated the countries polices for years but now they kinda fell back, plus mountains. Stormland is totally Carolina, like it's always raining there lol. Dorne as Texas isnt bad, though I was thinking Florida ( which uh also isn't known for being a bastion of independent thought) just mainly because of oranges, but both Texas and Florida are pretty diverse just like Dorne. Definitely agree with the rest, Riverlands is Ohio/Illinois/Wisconsin area, Reach is Kansas like and Westernlands gotta be Cali.

IronIslands are, Hawaii? Lol

But you left out a kingdom, and my favorite state ;)

Dragonstone, truly a bastion of independent thought, although not on the continent and with a different origin story with it's sister kingdoms it was still part of the Westerosi nation on day 1 (looking at you FL/TX). A little east, off shore from the continent, is an island whose architecture is synemonous with Westeros, it's marvel skyscrapers rival the greats of Castelry Rock (Goldengate) or the Red Keep in KL (white house). Truly, the Empire State. Uh, kingdom ;)

Under Rhaena Targaryen, Dragonstone was more like Hebden Bridge.

Link to comment
Share on other sites

I remember reading somewhere that George suffers from the same thing other North American authors do. They make their fantasy worlds too big.

This is because the US and Canada have a culture in which you use your car for going almost anywhere. And leads to authors like George to misinterpret how long it would actually take to walk somewhere.

Compare this to Tolkien who lived in Britain for most of his life, and would go on long walks. This gave him a picture of actually how big our world is and how much space their is. Hence middle earth being allot more realistic in size and travel time.


And if we’re being honest, just by looking at grrm I can tell he isnt the type that goes for long walks.

Link to comment
Share on other sites

13 minutes ago, The Young Maester said:

I remember reading somewhere that George suffers from the same thing other North American authors do. They make their fantasy worlds too big.

This is because the US and Canada have a culture in which you use your car for going almost anywhere. And leads to authors like George to misinterpret how long it would actually take to walk somewhere.

Compare this to Tolkien who lived in Britain for most of his life, and would go on long walks. This gave him a picture of actually how big our world is and how much space their is. Hence middle earth being allot more realistic in size and travel time.


And if we’re being honest, just by looking at grrm I can tell he isnt the type that goes for long walks.

^ This poster means that Germ is fat.

Link to comment
Share on other sites

17 minutes ago, The Young Maester said:

I remember reading somewhere that George suffers from the same thing other North American authors do. They make their fantasy worlds too big.

This is because the US and Canada have a culture in which you use your car for going almost anywhere. And leads to authors like George to misinterpret how long it would actually take to walk somewhere.

Compare this to Tolkien who lived in Britain for most of his life, and would go on long walks. This gave him a picture of actually how big our world is and how much space their is. Hence middle earth being allot more realistic in size and travel time.


And if we’re being honest, just by looking at grrm I can tell he isnt the type that goes for long walks.

 

4 minutes ago, Crazy Old Guy said:

^ This poster means that Germ is fat.

Hey, Stephen King goes for long walks and he ended up getting hit by a van. Better safe than sorry.

Link to comment
Share on other sites

38 minutes ago, The Young Maester said:

I remember reading somewhere that George suffers from the same thing other North American authors do. They make their fantasy worlds too big.

This is because the US and Canada have a culture in which you use your car for going almost anywhere. And leads to authors like George to misinterpret how long it would actually take to walk somewhere.

Compare this to Tolkien who lived in Britain for most of his life, and would go on long walks. This gave him a picture of actually how big our world is and how much space their is. Hence middle earth being allot more realistic in size and travel time.


And if we’re being honest, just by looking at grrm I can tell he isnt the type that goes for long walks.

Also, Tolkien’s background as a soldier shows up in how long his armies take to move around, and their logistics.  

Link to comment
Share on other sites

9 minutes ago, SeanF said:

Also, Tolkien’s background as a soldier shows up in how long his armies take to move around, and their logistics.  

Yeah, it definitely shows in his chauvinism. I kinda forget that he was quite racist and that that reflected in his background.

Edited by Crazy Old Guy
Link to comment
Share on other sites

Waymar’s and the Other’s swords

 

According to Craster, in ACOK a Jon chapter 23, Waymar’s Sword was black steel.

 

Quote

“Aye, those three I recall. The lordling no older than one of these pups. Too proud to sleep under my roof, him in his sable cloak and black steel. My wives give him big cow eyes all the same.” He turned his squint on the nearest of the women. “Gared says they were chasing raiders. I told him, with a commander that green, best not catch ’em. Gared wasn’t half-bad, for a crow. Had less ears than me, that one. The ’bite took ’em, same as mine.” Craster laughed. “Now I hear he got no head neither. The ’bite do that too?”

 

And it was became “white with frost” during Waymar’s dance with the Other’s sword, AGOT Prologue.

 

Quote

Again and again the swords met, until Will wanted to cover his ears against the strange anguished keening of their clash. Ser Waymar was panting from the effort now, his breath steaming in the moonlight. His blade was white with frost; the Other’s danced with pale blue light.

 

The Other’s sword was a pale translucent shard of crystal that was alive with moonlight and it shimmered and danced with a faint blue ghost-light.  AGOT, Prologue

 

Quote

The Other slid forward on silent feet. In its hand was a longsword like none that Will had ever seen. No human metal had gone into the forging of that blade. It was alive with moonlight, translucent, a shard of crystal so thin that it seemed almost to vanish when seen edge-on. There was a faint blue shimmer to the thing, a ghost-light that played around its edges, and somehow Will knew it was sharper than any razor.

 

And the Other’s sword would have been covered in Waymar’s blood.

 

Quote

Then Royce’s parry came a beat too late. The pale sword bit through the ringmail beneath his arm. The young lord cried out in pain. Blood welled between the rings. It steamed in the cold, and the droplets seemed red as fire where they touched the snow. Ser Waymar’s fingers brushed his side. His moleskin glove came away soaked with red.

 

 

Note that the droplets only “seemed red as fire”. That’s because of the Purkinje effect. The effect describes why reds will appear darker relative to other colors as light levels decrease, i.e. moonlight. For this reason Waymar’s blood would appear black on the blade of the Other’s sword.

 

So we have two swords,

One black sword (Waymar’s sword) with the blade half white.

One white sword (Other’s sword) with the blade half black.

 

Picture those two swords meeting. Perfect contract! Interesting??

Link to comment
Share on other sites

11 hours ago, The Bard of Banefort said:

Does he know how long it should take to travel from, say, Winterfell to King’s Landing? Because everyone seems to move way too fast in ASOIAF.

This is something ive noticed between GRRM and Tolkien. There is an interview with Tolkien in which he say's he made his maps first, stating that it would be a mess to write the book and create a map after. Something George did. I can see Tolkiens logic as with a map and language set first, writing mustve become much easier. 

For instance. Tolkien pulled from a lot of real world stuff with the Myrkwood being a real mythic place located near Ukraine. The Shire being in England and Mordor being where the Black Sea is and Gondor being roughly the Greeks .As the Gondorians are connected to the Atlantis myth/ Numenor. Numenor likely being pulled from Numitor, one of Romulus and Remus ancestors. With Rome having ties to the Greeks, but Italy and Spain being cut from Tolkiens map likely cause he hated the Latin influence that ruined Old English, which he loved. Plus it simplifies the story, especially not having the Mediterranean sea trade routes.

Now, that all being said. Frodo's journey to Mordor is roughly equivalent to a holy pilgrimage to Jerusalem or a crusade. So his journey is roughly 10-12 miles a day at a years travel. 

Another example is how the Rohirrim come from the North near Dale and is reflected in their linguistics. With people from Dale and The Lonely Mountain having Norse names, while the Rohirrim have names similar to Old English. Like Eowynn, Eomer, Theoden, Hama, and Halfdan. The Distance between these two lands is changed from history though, with the Rohirrim being roughly in the lands that the Goths would've been. Though you do have Theodoric among the Goths, and his name is similar to Theoden. 

 

Martin, working as a gardener, has gardened himself into a few rabbit holes. Though he some how manages to hold a large part of it together, likely through the aid of Elio and Linda. Or else we would have horses changing sex ocnstantly and peoples eye colors constantly changing. Something they pointed out to him before.

With all these other narratives (Yiti, Dunk and Egg, Fire and Blood 2, and i can't remember what all else), I worry about not just ASOIAF, but of those stories as well. I could see the Dunk and Egg show passing his books just like ASOIAF did. 

As an aspiring writer, its something I try to avoid by taking the time to build my world, maps, languages, and history before completing the main story. Or else id be in the same pickle as George or worse, as im no gardener and couldn't wing it like him.

Link to comment
Share on other sites

Join the conversation

You can post now and register later. If you have an account, sign in now to post with your account.

Guest
Reply to this topic...

×   Pasted as rich text.   Paste as plain text instead

  Only 75 emoji are allowed.

×   Your link has been automatically embedded.   Display as a link instead

×   Your previous content has been restored.   Clear editor

×   You cannot paste images directly. Upload or insert images from URL.

 Share

×
×
  • Create New...