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Two Weeks Until The Rise of the Dragon


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7 minutes ago, The Bard of Banefort said:

@Ran What say you?

Yep, Varys is correct. That was all part of the compression going on for this book. Like I said, if something like like it might be major info, well, it probably is the result of the shortcuts used to make the text much tighter rather than actually something major.

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14 hours ago, The Bard of Banefort said:

The north is confirmed as the least populous kingdom, with fewer people than Dorne or the Iron Islands.

I have ordered mine but it has not arrived yet, so out of curiosity does it flat out say they have less people  then Dorne and the Iron Islands, or does it only say least populous? I ask because least populous does not nececeraly mean the least people, it can can also mean the least dense in population.

Edited by direpupy
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3 minutes ago, direpupy said:

I have ordered mine but it has not arrived yet, so out of curiosity does it flat out say they have less people  then Dorne and the Iron Islands, or does it only say least populous? I ask because least populous does not nececeraly mean the least people, it can can also mean the least dense in population.

If I remember correctly, it said the least populous. (I have the audiobook, so it’s hard to check). Wouldn’t it say least densely populated if that’s what they meant, though?

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34 minutes ago, The Bard of Banefort said:

If I remember correctly, it said the least populous. (I have the audiobook, so it’s hard to check). Wouldn’t it say least densely populated if that’s what they meant, though?

Thanks for they answer.

As to your question, no not necessarily, populous is a rather vague term that can both mean lowest number of people period, but also lowest number of people per square mile. Hence my question.

Thanks again for the quik answer

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7 minutes ago, The Bard of Banefort said:

Was it already canon that the kingsguard was founded in 10 AC? I didn’t realize it had taken that long.

Yep it was already in The World of Ice and Fire back in 2014.

Quote

On one occasion in 10 AC, Aegon and Visenya were both attacked in the streets of King's Landing, and if not for Visenya and Dark Sister, the king might not have survived. Despite this, the king still believed that his guards were sufficient to his defense; Visenya convinced him otherwise. (It is recorded that when Aegon pointed out his guardsmen, Visenya drew Dark Sister and cut his cheek before his guards could react. "Your guards are slow and lazy," Visenya is reported to have said, and the king was forced to agree.)

It was Visenya, not Aegon, who decided the nature of the Kingsguard. Seven champions for the Lord of the Seven Kingdoms, who would all be knights. She modeled their vows upon those of the Night's Watch, so that they would forfeit all things save their duty to the king. And when Aegon spoke of a grand tourney to choose the first Kingsguard, Visenya dissuaded him, saying he needed more than skill in arms to protect him; he also needed unwavering loyalty. The king entrusted Visenya with selecting the first members of the order, and history shows he was wise to do so: two died defending him, and all served to the end of their days with honor. The White Book recounts their names, as it has recorded the name and deeds of every knight who swore the vows: Ser Corlys Velaryon, the first Lord Commander; Ser Richard Roote; Ser Addison Hill, Bastard of Cornfield; Ser Gregor Goode and Ser Griffith Goode, brothers; Ser Humfrey the Mummer, a hedge knight; and Ser Robin Darklyn, called Darkrobin, the first of many Darklyns to wear the white cloak.

-TWOIAF, The Targaryen Kings: Aegon I

 

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It is the least populous, definitely, as per the book. What exactly that's supposed to mean only the authors can tell you.

The book context covers the Iron Islands and the Riverlands as one kingdom - the section we talk about is about the state of Westeros at the time of the Conquest - so nobody would count the Iron Islands as a single political entity there.

There is also a kind of weird sidebar trying to explain 'the Seven Kingdoms' name by way of Aegon creating 'another kingdom' by way of splitting the Riverlands and the Iron Islands into two domains again. Not something I particularly like since Aegon already had his own 'Dragonstone kingdom' prior to the Conquest and also styled himself 'King of the Rhoynar' from the start, so the official take of the Iron Throne always was that Dorne was one of the kingdoms they ruled even if that wasn't the case.

Regarding the military discussion I'd definitely say that pretty much every common man on the Iron Islands (and quite some women) are potential soldiers since they are not, for the most part, peasants but rather fisherfolk who own or work on boats and ships and thus are by default also all potential reavers.

Dorne's 50,000 can be kind of made sense if we allow the Young Dragon some leeway for exaggeration as well as take into account that during Daeron's Conquest men, women, and children who would not fight under normal circumstances took up arms to defend their homes against a hated foreign invader.

The North has the unique practice of sending away their older men to die in war and battle to spare their families useless mouths in winter, so if pushed the North also has a greater reservoir of men for battle than the regions of Westeros where old men are not exactly encouraged or forced to do that kind of thing.

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6 hours ago, Lord Varys said:

It is the least populous, definitely, as per the book. What exactly that's supposed to mean only the authors can tell you.

The book context covers the Iron Islands and the Riverlands as one kingdom - the section we talk about is about the state of Westeros at the time of the Conquest - so nobody would count the Iron Islands as a single political entity there.

There is also a kind of weird sidebar trying to explain 'the Seven Kingdoms' name by way of Aegon creating 'another kingdom' by way of splitting the Riverlands and the Iron Islands into two domains again. Not something I particularly like since Aegon already had his own 'Dragonstone kingdom' prior to the Conquest and also styled himself 'King of the Rhoynar' from the start, so the official take of the Iron Throne always was that Dorne was one of the kingdoms they ruled even if that wasn't the case.

Regarding the military discussion I'd definitely say that pretty much every common man on the Iron Islands (and quite some women) are potential soldiers since they are not, for the most part, peasants but rather fisherfolk who own or work on boats and ships and thus are by default also all potential reavers.

Dorne's 50,000 can be kind of made sense if we allow the Young Dragon some leeway for exaggeration as well as take into account that during Daeron's Conquest men, women, and children who would not fight under normal circumstances took up arms to defend their homes against a hated foreign invader.

The North has the unique practice of sending away their older men to die in war and battle to spare their families useless mouths in winter, so if pushed the North also has a greater reservoir of men for battle than the regions of Westeros where old men are not exactly encouraged or forced to do that kind of thing.

That to me suggests that the North is less populous than the Riverlands and Iron Islands combined - which tracks with what we already knew - and because this is pre-AFFC (in setting), everyone still believes that Dorne can muster 50,000 troops and is more populous than the North, although we readers know that is not true. So I don't think there's any contradiction with what the main series establishes.

It may confuse readers less interested in that side of things though.

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3 hours ago, Werthead said:

That to me suggests that the North is less populous than the Riverlands and Iron Islands combined - which tracks with what we already knew - and because this is pre-AFFC (in setting), everyone still believes that Dorne can muster 50,000 troops and is more populous than the North, although we readers know that is not true. So I don't think there's any contradiction with what the main series establishes.

It may confuse readers less interested in that side of things though.

I doubt that everybody ever believed that Dorne could muster so many troops. That's a claim that goes back, specifically, to Daeron's book about his conquest, not some general knowledge. And as I said, you can make that kind of work in setting. Doran might believe he cannot raise 50,000 spears to fight outside Dorne ... but this doesn't mean that Daeron's forces didn't encounter 50,000 or more armed Dornishmen and Dornishwomen during their attempt to conquer and occupy the land.

We would also assume that Dorne's population increased throughout the Targaryen reign - the First Dornish War would have hit them hard, of course, but afterwards they didn't have many problems with the Targaryens and, especially, the long peace during the reigns of Jaehaerys I and Viserys I should have increased the population there. If that peace continues throughout the bulk of the reign of the Dragonbane then Dorne might be comparatively strong in 157 AC.

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12 hours ago, The Bard of Banefort said:

So is the consensus that the North has the least amount of people then?

Not at all, and I don't think that tracks with the army sizes the North musters through the series. The traditional ranking has been that the Reach has had the most, the Westerlands the second-largest amount and then the North, the Vale and the Riverlands are around the same level, the Stormlands somewhat less, then Dorne and then the Iron Islands, which are tiny. The wild card is Dorne and its enemies both claiming that Dorne has a much larger population and number of troops than is really the case.

The North's weakness has been in having, by far, the lowest population density, because it's huge, so having the same number of technically musterable troops as the Vale isn't very helpful if it takes them six months to fully mobilise rather than six weeks, and the logistical problems of feeding the army as it comes together are almost insurmountable. That's why Robb didn't take his full potential troop numbers with him to the War of the Five Kings, conveniently leaving a sizable number of unengaged forces to swear to Stannis and Roose Bolton later on. That's also one of the reasons it takes Cregan Stark a long time to intervene in the Dance of Dragons.

IIRC, Torrhen Stark brings 30,000 troops to the Neck to face Aegon the Conqueror, so 300 years later, even given some harsh winters and the odd plague, you'd assume that the North would be able to muster, at the absolute least, a similar number of troops, if not a moderately greater number.

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2 hours ago, The Grey Wolf Strikes Back said:

I don't know if its the PDF or just my eyesight but a lot of the artwork is disappointing. Maybe it looks better in print?

@Lord Varys

Did GRRM address the canonicity of Ser Raymont Baratheon?

No, the issue isn't addressed.

FaB already settled this issue in my opinion, though. He is gone there, so he is gone everywhere. FaB as published is the final manuscript version.

Insofar as the clarifications are concerned, I'd say that later editions of FaB should include the name 'Corwyn' here:

Quote

On the isle of Driftmark, Daemon Velaryon’s eldest son Corwyn became a father for the first time when his lady wife presented him with a handsome, healthy boy. The babe was named Corlys, after the great-great-uncle who had served so nobly as the Lord Commander of the first Kingsguard, but in the years to come the people of Westeros would come to know this new Corlys better as the Sea Snake.

(The bold insert is not in the actual book, of course.)

It might also make sense to add the name of Corlys' mother there. This is Corlys Velaryon we are talking about here, the most famous man of his generation, so mentioning his parents is something a reader would expect.

A similar thing could be done for Martyn Tyrell's status as a younger son of House Tyrell.

By the way, the Dornish War section includes the sentence Ran talked about mentioning a Lysene dragon slayer engine as an explanation why the Targaryens never burned Sunspear.

@Ran By the way - have you guys ever inquired as to how exactly the Faith lost its judicial privileges, how it came to be that Jaehaerys I abolished the courts of the Faith and issued the laws King Tommen later overturns? It seemed as if George wanted to write about that when he specifically mentions those privileges in 'The Sons of the Dragon' along with the Faith being exempt from taxation.

You had a brief take on that in TWoIaF, but that was pretty generic and FaB completely glossed that over. Considering how complicated and intricate the continuation of the Targaryen incest turned out to be (with the trouble during the Regency and the subsequent invention of the Doctrine of Exceptionalism), one imagines that the true story behind the final humiliation of the Faith was (or would/should be) equally complex.

It is a pity that George didn't write about this since it could actually involve the Targaryens in Oldtown at that time, namely Septa Rhaella, Septa Maegelle, and Archmaester Vaegon to some degree. Not to mention a young(er) Otto Hightower and his elder brother. The gut feeling one has about this incident would be that the stumbling block causing the chain of events that led to Jaehaerys finally acting on this matter would have been something connected to Oldtown, the Hightowers, their bannermen or at least Reach stuff.

One imagines that many lords and commoners from all across the Realm continuously complained, but there must have been some final crisis that caused the king to finally bestir himself and open this can of worms after he had earlier established a status quo with the Faith that worked pretty well.

It could have also been something in which Prince Aemon was involved in as Master of Laws ... if it happened after 80 AC.

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18 minutes ago, The Grey Wolf Strikes Back said:

@Lord Varys

There's also the fact the chapterhouse of the Warrior's Sons at Gulltown apparently slept through the whole damn Uprising.

While this is also an issue, it is a rather minor issue, one we can easily imagine Hubert Arryn, Allard Royce, and the Graftons took care of this problem for Maegor. After all, Hubert Arryn pretty much owed it to Maegor's handling of the Jonos incident that he became the new Lord of the Vale, so we can expect him to be very keen to pay back his debt.

There certainly could have been potential for a story there, of course, just as there was during the Dance. But George never wrote it.

The judicial powers of the Faith are another matter, I think, since the abolishment of Jaehaerys' specific laws is a very crucial plot point in AFfC - without it the High Septon would have neither a pretext nor wield the legal authority to arrest and try Queen Margaery and Queen Cersei - and should thus also have been a crucial plot point in FaB.

Not as big a plot point, perhaps, as the Faith Militant Uprising, but a crucial plot point nonetheless.

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In Magali Villeneuve’s picture of Rhaenyra and Alicent, who are the men supposed to be? I’m guessing the one is Viserys (even though he looks more like Daemon) but is the other guy Criston or Harwin?

I must admit, I’m a little salty that the “exclusive images” from the 2023 calendar are all featured in this book. It’s still a beautiful calendar, but it feels like a tiny bit of a rip-off now.

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12 hours ago, The Bard of Banefort said:

In Magali Villeneuve’s picture of Rhaenyra and Alicent, who are the men supposed to be? I’m guessing the one is Viserys (even though he looks more like Daemon) but is the other guy Criston or Harwin?

I must admit, I’m a little salty that the “exclusive images” from the 2023 calendar are all featured in this book. It’s still a beautiful calendar, but it feels like a tiny bit of a rip-off now.

the blond guy wears a crown, so has to be Viserys.
For the dark haired guy, id go with Criston, as he does not look like a "Breakbones" to me. Harwin was described as massive. that guy is not.

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I’ve made some notes during my reading of The Rise of the Dragon. Before creating an errata page on the Wiki, I’d like to read you guys input. @Ran @Lord Varys @The Bard of Banefort @The Wondering Wolf

 

The Conquest: The Arrival of the Targaryens

Dragonstone is described as the largest of the island of Blackwater Bay. Isn't Driftmark larger than Dragonstone ?

 

The Conquest: Aegon’s Landing and Conquest

The battle in the waters off Gulltown is now known as the “Battle of the Gullet” just like in the Dance. Shouldn’t the battle be named the “Battle of Gulltown” rather than the Gullet ? Is it a mistake or does the battle between the Velaryon fleet and the Arryn + Braavosi fleets changed place all the sudden ?

 

The Reign of Maegor I: War with the Faith Militant

* Jon Hogg is once misspelled as “John Hogg”.

* The second Lord Manfred Hightower died in 41 AC in Fire & Blood but in 43 AC in The Rise of the Dragon. Which date is correct ?

 

The Reign of Jaehaerys I: The King’s Works

Quote

[…] Walton had been slain by one of Maegor’s former Kingsguard, whom Jaehaerys had exiled to the Wall”.

That’s a bit of a short cut here, Walton pursued Ser Raymund Mallery and his mutineers beyond the Wall and he was killed by a giant.

 

This chapter mentions that both Ronnal Baratheon and Borys Baratheon came back from exile. But in the previous chapter, it is said that King Jaehaerys forgave Lord Rogar Baratheon and all his brother except for the youngest, Orryn Baratheon, who was sent in a 10-year-exile for the attempted abduction of Princess Rhaella. So, where does the mentions of exiles for Ronnal and Borys came from ? Was it a self-imposed exile because they were angry at Jaehaerys/Rogar ? I can understand the case for Borys since he became angry after he lost his status as the heir of Storm’s End when Boremund Baratheon was born and later on joined the Second Vulture King against his brother. The fact that Borys really wanted to become the Lord of Storm’s End is even more flagrant when we take into account the fact that he advised Rogar to join the Night’s Watch after the Rhaella incident which would have made him the new Lord of Storm’s End since Rogar was childless at that time. But Ronnal is never given a reason to leave the Stormlands/Westeros and then coming back on his own just to die of the Shivers.

 

Quote

The first and most dangerous [Vulture King] threatened Aegon I’s reign until he was killed in 37 AC.”

Shouldn’t the text say “Aenys I’s reign” rather than “Aegon I’s reign” here ? We only hear about the First Vulture King in the context of the beginning of Aenys I’s reign.

 

The Reign of Jaehaerys I: The Later Reign

Elysar is once called “Septon Elysar” instead of “Grand Maester Elysar”.

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