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1 hour ago, C.T. Phipps said:

I assume since, well, it's A Song of Ice and Fire that all of Mushroom's supposed libel is actually just objectively factual.

That is not how should read things as per the author. It is like taking all the nonsensical rumors at face value we get in the books. Like Sansa murdering Joff and turning into a flying direwolf. Or Robb turning into a monstrous wolf the Freys only could put down.

It is actually pretty clear that Mushroom is false most of the time.

20 minutes ago, The Bard of Banefort said:

Seeing as Rhaenyra didn’t execute Alicent despite having good reason to, I doubt she’d sell her into sexual slavery, which is arguably more sinister. There’s also no way it would have stayed a secret.

Well, if that had happened then it is rather odd that both queens returned safe and sound to the Red Keep for other things to happen to them.

20 minutes ago, The Bard of Banefort said:

I wonder if the show will provide a reason for why Mysaria betrayed Daemon. Rhaenyra didn’t want to execute Nettles at first, so she asked Mysaria for advice, who came in dressed like Bloodraven and said Nettles was pregnant with Daemon’s bastard. Then when Daemon learned what happened, he called it “a whore’s work.” There’s something more going on here.

Mysaria isn't dressed like Bloodraven ... she is dressed in Targaryen colors which is very odd - especially that Gyldayn would mention it. I've tossed around the idea she might have some bastard Targaryen background but that wouldn't really be the motive for her betrayal, presumably (although it could help explain why Daemon would choose and keep that particular mistress ... and also why Rhaenyra accepted her).

In the end the best explanation there is that Nettles is the daughter Mysaria had hoped she and Daemon would have ... and she couldn't bear the thought that the guy played the loving father with her when he didn't do that with their own unborn child. The show could strengthen that angle if they gave Daemon-Mysaria a couple of children who died stillborn or early, and Daemon wasn't exactly a nice father or lover to Mysaria at that time.

It cannot be simple jealousy on Mysaria's part. Especially since she must have been aware that driving a wedge between Rhaenyra and Daemon would most definitely undermine Rhaenyra's queenship and thus eventually endanger herself. But apparently she didn't care about any of that.

20 minutes ago, The Bard of Banefort said:

George sort of undermined himself by having Rhaenyra crowned and then sit the Iron Throne for half a year. If Maegor’s still considered a legitimate king by historians, then Rhaenyra absolutely should be too. 

Well, effectively she is a ruling monarch now, regardless what the appendix of AGoT says. Aegon II was deposed for a time and then restored to the throne ... and in the meantime Rhaenyra was the ruling monarch. Those are the facts of Westerosi history as presented by the history books. Saying Rhaenyra never ruled would be like saying 'Joffrey was never king' because he wasn't Robert's son.

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50 minutes ago, The Bard of Banefort said:

Seeing as Rhaenyra didn’t execute Alicent despite having good reason to, I doubt she’d sell her into sexual slavery, which is arguably more sinister. There’s also no way it would have stayed a secret.

I wonder if the show will provide a reason for why Mysaria betrayed Daemon. Rhaenyra didn’t want to execute Nettles at first, so she asked Mysaria for advice, who came in dressed like Bloodraven and said Nettles was pregnant with Daemon’s bastard. Then when Daemon learned what happened, he called it “a whore’s work.” There’s something more going on here.

George sort of undermined himself by having Rhaenyra crowned and then sit the Iron Throne for half a year. If Maegor’s still considered a legitimate king by historians, then Rhaenyra absolutely should be too. 

1. A Song of Ice and Fire is full of impractical cruel decisions that the people of Westeros do because, well, they're not acting in a manner of logic but a manner of revenge or spite. Littlefinger has Jean Poole raped to train her to be his brothel in hopes of breaking her will despite planning to make her Lady of the North. Also, I sincerely doubt Rhaenyra would bother to keep it a secret because at this point they are already people who have been involved in kinslaying and other atrocities. Neither she nor Aegon II are remembered as anything other than scum.

2. Mind you the speculation that Nettles and Daemon had a daughter/fatherly relation is fanon. They could have been in love.

3. I mean, speaking as a Master of History, this is just accurate. Not just to the English Anarchy but the politicization of history. Rhaenyra is considered an illegitimate queen but its her lineage that the continues the Targaryen dynasty. It's a compromise that pleases no one really but is designed to be the least controversial take you can write down. Her reign is "illegal" and his legitimate because Cragen Stark ordered all of his murderers executed, even though he was on the side of the Blacks.

It's a legal technicality that she was a Usurper of the "rightful" king because it serves the law of male primogeniture that the son of Viserys is the rightful king but utterly meaningless in terms of practicality.

Edited by C.T. Phipps
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14 hours ago, Lord Varys said:

What I loathe about the dialogue we got so far is this framing of the Westerosi as sexist zealots who would actually take up arms and fight to get rid of a female monarch. And that's just too much.

Rhaenyra instead of her brother Aegon is a scandal because the son is treated kind of badly in that scenario ... but even that wasn't enough that the entire Realm rose up and unanimously crowned Aegon II. Meaning the Westerosi are not that bad as Rhaenys paints them in her lines there. If Viserys I had had only daughters, chances are very low that in 129 AC there would have been a rebellion to put Daemon or a son of Daemon's on the throne instead of Rhaenyra.

It's not pleasant to think that there is deep rooted sexism in a world that we enjoy and often accepted by characters that we love and it's tempting to try to explain individual instances away.

 

However, when you look at the picture as a whole, I think it is pretty clear that there is strong discrimination against women in Westeros (with the possible exception of Dorne)

 

Examples of institutional sexism in Westeros include:

  1. Governance and Wealth
    • Male preference primogeniture - throughout the kingdom (with the exception of Dorne), older sisters are consistently and legally passed over for younger brothers. As such it is significantly more unlikely that a woman can own property or gain a position of leige lord or monarch
    • Small council - of the around 160 named members of the Small Council throughout history, only 6 have been women
  1. Academia
    • Women are forbidden from becoming Maesters
  1. Faith
    • Although women can become septas, they are not allowed to become septons which means that they can never lead worship or become High Septon
  1. Military
    • Women are forbidden from joining the Night's Watch
    • There are no known instances of women becoming knights, suggesting that they are banned from the profession
    • Of the over 100 Kingsguard members named, only 1 (Brienne) is female
  1. Domestic violence
    • Rule of thumb and Rule of Six - Men are allowed to beat their adulterous wives six times with a rod no wider than their thumb, aka domestic violence is legal
    • Marital rape - it's unclear if marital rape is legal but if this world is anything like the middle ages then it probably is. It certainly appears that powerful men can beat and rape their wives (e.g. Aerys II, Robert, Ramsey) in the full knowledge of those around them and get away with it.
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Viserys was an inferior king by all stretches of the imagination and was chosen primarily for the fact he was a dude. The Targaryens had the belief they could make or break the rules (and probably could) due to their superior force. However, the Conciliator spent his entire reign attempting to undo the attempt to do so by Maegor the Cruel.

Edited by C.T. Phipps
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5 hours ago, Lord Varys said:

It is actually pretty clear that Mushroom is false most of the time. 

IRRC, George said that Mushroom does possess a lot of accurate information, because people in KL thought he was a simpleton and weren't afraid to talk about their secrets when he was nearby.

Edited by Takiedevushkikakzvezdy
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Most anything involving depraved sexual situations or where Mushroom claims not only to be a witness but a central participant is likely false.

Not necessarily everything in those two categories, but most.

He's the Procopius of the setting, or the Suetonius. 

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Just to highlight what a sexist jerk the Conciliator was:

1.   Continuing to have sex with Alysanne despite her extremely legitimate concerns at the possibility of her getting pregnant in her later years killing her. Dismissing those concerns when brought up.

 2.   His treatment of Daella and Viserra is not good. He pressures his most fragile child Daella to marry when she is only sixteen years old, which directly leads to her death in childbirth.

3. He was going to force Viserra to marry a man literally old enough to be her grandfather despite allowing his other children to have some form of choice  ignored her when she brings her concerns to him.

4. His dismissal of his youngest for having PREMARITAL SEX and general disgust at her.

5. His dismissal of the argument against First Night privileges until nagged about it.

6. The whole business with the heir club for men going to the affable but unexceptional Viserys.

7. Washing his hands of Aerea since day one.

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5 minutes ago, Ran said:

Most anything involving depraved sexual situations or where Mushroom claims not only to be a witness but a central participant is likely false.

Not necessarily everything in those two categories, but most.

He's the Procopius of the setting, or the Suetonius. 

I bring up the fact that George R.R. Martin, for the sake of drama, makes a lot of the lurid accusations and slander attributed to historical figures to be true in his books because it makes a better story. So I doubt the House of the Dragon will shy away from the more shocking and scandalous parts.

Certainly, "beloved queen driven to suicide due to carrying a child by her assault" is the kind of thing that can't be true in a setting with this much incest, atrocity, and horrifying treason.

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1 hour ago, C.T. Phipps said:

1.   Continuing to have sex with Alysanne despite her extremely legitimate concerns at the possibility of her getting pregnant in her later years killing her. Dismissing those concerns when brought up.

It's reading a lot into the text to say he "dismissed her", or that Alysanne did not want another child. Indeed, the initial conversation we see about this is that Alysanne is disappointed by the fact that she thinks she's past bearing children. It seems to have become a matter of faith that the text of F&B says Alysanne did not want to get pregnant, but as I have noted in the past it feels like a misreading. She believes she can't bear a healthy child any more, but she's not happy about it, but rather "resigned" to it.

ETA:

For that matter, on point #4, why should Jaehaerys embrace premarital sex? He and Alysanne almost certainly did in fact stay chaste, despite Rogar's efforts and printed slanders. I think the religious orthodoxy of Jaehaerys and Alysanne needs to be considered. They are devout believers in the Faith and its tenets. They practiced what they preached. 

And Saera did just a bit more than have premarital sex, one must admit.

Edited by Ran
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10 minutes ago, Ran said:

It's reading a lot into the text to say he "dismissed her", or that Alysanne did not want another child. Indeed, the initial conversation we see about this is that Alysanne is disappointed by the fact that she thinks she's past bearing children. It seems to have become a matter of faith that the text of F&B says Alysanne did not want to get pregnant, but as I have noted in the past it feels like a misreading. She believes she can't bear a healthy child any more, but she's not happy about it, but rather "resigned" to it.

ETA:

For that matter, on point #4, why should Jaehaerys embrace premarital sex? He and Jaehaerys almost certainly did in fact stay chaste, despite Rogar's efforts and Mushroom's slanders. I think the religious orthodoxy of Jaehaerys and Alysanne needs to be considered. They are devout believers in the Faith and its tenets. They practiced what they preached.

1. I don't necessarily dispute that but it is putting his wife's health in serious jeopardy.

2. This I flat out disagree with as Jaehaerys and his wife are in no way, shape, or form orthodox Seveners. They are the people who created the nonsensical doctrine of exceptionalism to justify their incestuous relationship after all. A doctrine which basically says the Targaryens are not beholden to the laws of other men. It seems to require a rather significant looking the other way to say that Jaehaerys chastity makes him more honorable than the significantly less sinful (by the Seven doctrine) engagement in carnal relations.

3. Mind you, I don't think Jaehaerys is EXCEPTIONAL in his sexism. I think he was a man of his time and significantly less misogynist than, say, Maegor. But a man of his time in Westeros, when so many other Targaryens were not (and have not far ancestors who were dragon riding badasses who led armies) is notable. It's part of his character arc that shows the King succumbed to normalizing the Targaryens to Andal values.

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8 minutes ago, SeanF said:

IMHO, Procopius is the model for Mushroom, and most of his lurid claims can be dismissed.

I'm also fairly certain that there was no Brother-Sister incest in the House of Lancaster nor Anne Boleyn's accusations that provide so much inspiration for the Lannisters. Richard III was also not deformed and so on and so on. Westeros is the HBO version of Medieval history.

*ba dum ching*

Edited by C.T. Phipps
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Re Salic Law, my own view is that it was an invented tradition, raised to bar (a) Joan of Navarre and (b) Isabella of France and her son, from inheriting the throne of France.

It certainly didn't stop Joan from inheriting the crown of Navarre, or Mahaut from inheriting the County of Artois.

I view the arguments against Rhaenyra's inheriting the Iron Throne similarly.  It's a pretext put forward by the Greens, to get their faction into power, rather than an argument which they truly believe.

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17 minutes ago, Ran said:

It's reading a lot into the text to say he "dismissed her", or that Alysanne did not want another child. Indeed, the initial conversation we see about this is that Alysanne is disappointed by the fact that she thinks she's past bearing children. It seems to have become a matter of faith that the text of F&B says Alysanne did not want to get pregnant, but as I have noted in the past it feels like a misreading. She believes she can't bear a healthy child any more, but she's not happy about it, but rather "resigned" to it.

I think it doesn't make much sense to assume that the woman who told her husband to go f*ck himself on two different matters wouldn't tell him in case she didn't want to get children anymore.

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6 minutes ago, SeanF said:

Re Salic Law, my own view is that it was an invented tradition, raised to bar (a) Joan of Navarre and (b) Isabella of France and her son, from inheriting the throne of France.

It certainly didn't stop Joan from inheriting the crown of Navarre, or Mahaut from inheriting the County of Artois.

I view the arguments against Rhaenyra's inheriting the Iron Throne similarly.  It's a pretext put forward by the Greens, to get their faction into power, rather than an argument which they truly believe.

It was certainly the will of the King that Rhaenyra inherit the throne but his father had just gone through extended political and social negotiations to get precedent handled as well as dismiss all of the other heirs that the Targaryens would never struggle with, including the bastard children of his disinherited daughter as well as Maegor claimants. Overturning that is a bigger deal than people give it credit for but really amounts in large part to where you think the power of a king flows from.

Frankly, I think Aegon II has a lot better claim than King Stephen in the Anarchy.

The irony is that if Alicent's father HADNT tried to push out Daemon, he probably wouldn't have had difficulty pushing his grandson as the heir to the king.

Edited by C.T. Phipps
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On 7/23/2022 at 12:16 PM, C.T. Phipps said:

I'm also fairly certain that there was no Brother-Sister incest in the House of Lancaster nor Anne Boleyn's accusations that provide so much inspiration for the Lannisters. Richard III was also not deformed and so on and so on. Westeros is the HBO version of Medieval history.

*ba dum ching*

Well, just because the truth is hidden sometimes doesn't mean Mushroom is right all the time. He is introduced as the guy who makes outlandish and ridiculous claims but gets it right in some cases. Do you really believe he had a threesome with Daemon and Rhaenyra, or that he was burnt when he tried to claim a dragon? Just too many stories which don't ring true to me.

Edited by The Wondering Wolf
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10 minutes ago, The Wondering Wolf said:

I think it doesn't make much sense to assume that the woman who told her husband to go f*ck himself on two different matters wouldn't tell him in case she didn't want to get children anymore.

Agreed. It really doesn't.

Who has ever felt resignation without it involving disappointment to some degree?

It's just a very odd take on the text.

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8 minutes ago, C.T. Phipps said:

It was certainly the will of the King that Rhaenyra inherit the throne but his father had just gone through extended political and social negotiations to get precedent handled as well as dismiss all of the other heirs that the Targaryens would never struggle with, including the bastard children of his disinherited daughter as well as Maegor claimants. Overturning that is a bigger deal than people give it credit for but really amounts in large part to where you think the power of a king flows from.

Frankly, I think Aegon II has a lot better claim than King Stephen in the Anarchy.

The irony is that if Alicent's father HADNT tried to push out Daemon, he probably wouldn't have had difficulty pushing his grandson as the heir to the king.

Well, the will of the outgoing King ought to be of very great significance, in the absence of a constitution or Act of Succession, which sets out who is to inherit.  In England, Alfred inherited the throne of Wessex, by agreement with his brother, notwithstanding his brother left male heirs.  John was the heir of Richard I, and inherited in place of Arthur.  Henry VIII designated both Mary and Elizabeth to succeed him, in the absence of Edward producing an heir, and Elizabeth herself designated James of Scotland as her heir.

The fact that the Greens immediately resorted to murder, and covered up the death of Viserys I for a time, shows what shaky ground they were on, legally.

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5 minutes ago, SeanF said:

Well, the will of the outgoing King ought to be of very great significance, in the absence of a constitution or Act of Succession, which sets out who is to inherit.  In England, Alfred inherited the throne of Wessex, by agreement with his brother, notwithstanding his brother left male heirs.  John was the heir of Richard I, and inherited in place of Arthur.  Henry VIII designated both Mary and Elizabeth to succeed him, in the absence of Edward producing an heir, and Elizabeth herself designated James of Scotland as her heir.

The fact that the Greens immediately resorted to murder, and covered up the death of Viserys I for a time, shows what shaky ground they were on, legally.

I dunno, I think the Great Council of 101 is largely considered to be the most important legal precedent of the time.

And yes, it was indeed scandalous and questionable what they did versus openly proclaiming their support for the first born heir.

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18 minutes ago, Ran said:

Agreed. It really doesn't.

Who has ever felt resignation without it involving disappointment to some degree?

It's just a very odd take on the text.

While true, I just can't forget J's attempt to persuade his wife:

Bearing and delivering a child may be a joy for a young woman of ten-and-seven, like the Princess Alyssa, but it is quite another matter for one of forty, like her mother, Queen Alysanne. The joy was therefore not entirely unalloyed when Her Grace was found to be pregnant once again. Prince Valerion was born in 77 AC, after another troubled labor that saw Alysanne confined to her bed for half a year. Like his brother Gaemon four years earlier, he was a small and sickly babe, and never thrived. Half a dozen wet nurses came and went to no avail. In 78 AC, Valerion died, a fortnight short of his first nameday. The queen took his passing with resignation. “I am forty-two years old,” she told the king. “You must be content with the children I have given you. I am more suited to be a grandmother than a mother now, I fear.”

King Jaehaerys did not share her certainty. “Our mother, Queen Alyssa, was forty-six when she gave birth to Jocelyn,” he pointed out to Grand Maester Elysar. “The gods may not be done with us.”

You know, their mother...who died in childbirth.

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