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DreamSongs

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Which exert are you talking about? I haven't read that one yet.

on the westeros.or page about the dance of dragons it shows how died and how for some of the big names. Daeron was I

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No, no, Valyrian Steel is made by magic (GRRM's words in SSM) and ordinary fire can't harm it (we know this from books).

It doesn't say that Aegon was cremated in dragon's pyre, now does it? There's no reason for Blackfyre to be melted at the occasion.

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In the past we guessed at the total # of Targ dragons by counting the skulls (I'm mobile, iirc it was 17) but I don't know if Meraxes is one of them. That particular skull may still be in Dorne, though it could've been sent north at a number of different times (such as after Daeron's conquest, or the marriage that brought Dorne in).

(corrected to 19 skulls)

I have seen some comments on other threads that speculate that some dragons might have died in places or circumstances that made recovering their skulls impossible (over water, for instance). Using the number of skulls on hand may not lead to an accurate count of Targ dragons in Westeros.

Tyrion claims (in aGoT, when he is travelling north with Jon and Benjen) that one dragon skull at the Red Keep was 3000 years old. Is that a misprint? Was it supposed to be 300 years old? (I have the 2011 Bantam Books Mass Market Movie Tie-in edition.) Since four dragons died on Dragonstone between 300 and 400 years ago, a 300 year old skull should not have seemed remarkable to Tyrion. If not, it had to have come from Valyria. Perhaps it was the skull of the original Targ dragon, and they kept it for sentimental reasons. If so, it should not be included in the Westerosi count. (If it is not a misprint, I sure wish someone would ask GRRM about it.)

It does seem improbable that Rhaenys and Meraxes coould be slain in Dorne without being avenged. Could their deaths have been accidental, like flying into a mountain in foggy conditions? Could some dragon losses have been operational, rather than combat, losses?

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We cannot deduce how many dragons the Targaryens had from the skulls they kept in the Red Keep. First there are indeed some old skulls there, the one(s) that are 3,000 years old. Those are possibly heirlooms from ancient Valyrian times. Then there are the five dragons Aenar took with him to Dragonstone when he and his family moved there. Balerion was one of the them, but the other four were not alive during Aegon's time. We don't yet know if their skulls ended up in the Red Keep's throne room.

Finally we have to keep in mind that it's not that unlikely that many of the remains of the dragons who died during the Dance could not be recovered (or simply weren't recovered). We know that major battles were fought on water, so if a dragon died while trying to burn an assembled fleet at sea, or if two dragons fought and died above the sea, no one would have had the chance to recover them.

But my guess is that at least ten or so of the Red Keep skulls are post-Conquest dragon skulls.

The vibe I get from Aenys that he was trying to rule by allowing everyone a voice. This approach most certainly is not the best way to put a rebellion down. Gifting Maegor with Blackfyre could actually have been a way to win Maegor's loyalty/support. Despite the fact that Maegor was a great warrior, his personality traits most certainly did not make him the ideal king. And I don't mean his brutal tendencies, rather the fact that he seems to have been sort of a brooding/solitary figure.

Aenys certainly could have been murdered by Visenya/Maegor, and if he was indeed poisoned then things could have been kept secret (murdering Aenys openly most certainly would have put Maegor/Visenya in big trouble), but the question is whether Visenya really would have murdered her brother's son? She most certainly was the driving force behind Maegor's ascension to the Iron Throne, but this does not necessarily mean that she had a hand in Aenys' death. Especially if Jaehaerys and Alysanne were either not yet born or still small children the smarter move was to put the guy officially in charge who already did the great part of the dirty work during Aenys' reign. A boy king most certainly would not have helped the Targaryens to end the rebellions.

Maegor's strong position throughout his brother's reign put him in a very good position to succeed him.

As to the fact whether Aenys' portrait includes a hint that he was poisoned: I don't know. I always thought that indicated that he was more about joy of power and wealth, rather than the actual dirty work. The same is also indicated by his golden crown garments, and his elaborate mustache. No Targaryen king after him ever wore his crown. Could this be a hint be hint that it was lost when he died?

Other ancient Targaryen crowns were recycled later on: Aegon II wore Aegon's I crown (as did Maegor and Daeron I), Egg wore the crown of Aegon III, and Aerys II wore the crown of Aegon the Unworthy (which was also worn by Daeron II and Aerys I). The fact that Jaehaerys' crown - who most certainly was one of the most successful and admired Targaryen kings - was never worn after Rhaenyra wore it during the Dance, also indicates that it did not survive her death and/or the war.

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On the way Meraxes was killed:

Well, the Dornish do fight with spears. That could be a hint. Stabbing Meraxes through the eye could have killed him, it seems, at least if the theoretical background for the Serwyn of the Mirror Shield/Urrax story was rooted in reality. Apparently Ser Beyron Swann tried to pull off the same trick with Rhaenyra's Syrax. The fact that this ended badly for Ser Beyron does not necessarily mean that this was a bad idea. He could have been simply clumsly while trying pull it off.

More importantly, if Dornish guerilla tactics ever included suicide attacks, then even a dragon the size of Meraxes should go down rather easily. It's also possible he was lured in some kind of trap. You should be able to kill a dragon with trebuchet (if you hit it).

Perhaps the solution is to venture in established dragonslayer territory. Luring the beast into a trap - perhaps a narrow chasm or something like that, or tricking him to cross a disguised pit, attacking it from above or below in an environment were neither the wings nor the fire could help it all that much.

No idea though how Rhaenys could be tricked into the same trap. It seems as both of them died together. But that does not have to be the case. Perhaps they got seperated from each other and their army.

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Given that we are talking about the Dornish here, there is a distinct possibility that poison could have been involved in the deaths of Meraxes and Rhaenyra.

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Given that we are talking about the Dornish here, there is a distinct possibility that poison could have been involved in the deaths of Meraxes and Rhaenyra.

Do the Dornish have a reputation for employing poisons? I thought that was just the Red Viper and some of his daughters.

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Do the Dornish have a reputation for employing poisons? I thought that was just the Red Viper and some of his daughters.

Barristan thinks about pinning the attempted poisoning of Daenerys on Quentyn. Then there is the story told (to Tyrion by Oberyn?) about the Hand of the King who gets a faceful of scorpions in his bed one night. Snakes and scorpions seem to be linked with Dorne more than any other of the seven Kingdoms.

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Barristan thinks about pinning the attempted poisoning of Daenerys on Quentyn. Then there is the story told (to Tyrion by Oberyn?) about the Hand of the King who gets a faceful of scorpions in his bed one night. Snakes and scorpions seem to be linked with Dorne more than any other of the seven Kingdoms.

Ah, gotcha.

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Well, the Dornish do fight with spears. That could be a hint. Stabbing Meraxes through the eye could have killed him, it seems, at least if the theoretical background for the Serwyn of the Mirror Shield/Urrax story was rooted in reality. Apparently Ser Beyron Swann tried to pull off the same trick with Rhaenyra's Syrax. The fact that this ended badly for Ser Beyron does not necessarily mean that this was a bad idea. He could have been simply clumsly while trying pull it off..

Or perhaps the Targaryens started training their dragons to see through that trick after it was first used successfully.

No idea though how Rhaenys could be tricked into the same trap. It seems as both of them died together. But that does not have to be the case. Perhaps they got seperated from each other and their army.

Do we know how a dragon reacts to the death of its rider? Perhaps a Dornish sniper was able to take Rhaenys out and her dragon stayed put to protect her body.

Something else can we nominate possible candidates for killing the dragon? I guess that it’s either a Dayne (with Dawn) or an Uller from Hellholt (they seem to have a reputation of being crazy and unpredictable).

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Lord Varys gives us a lot of believable scenarios I think. In the mountains, the possibility of a pit or engineered avalanche or having a temporary high ground advantage

I have to agree poison is not unlikely, not because Dorne has a reputation for such necessarily, but because it just makes a lot of sense.

Dorne seems to hold independence and freedom as higher ideals than any of the other Seven Kingdoms. They don't care as much about honor when freedom is at stake, while other in other regions honor dictates stricter taboos about war.

In the Reach, poison may be unthinkable, but in Dorne it's more of a "dishonor is worse than servitude" or "you gotta do what you gotta do" type of situation. A Reachman may kneel in earnest surrender to a victorious foe while a Dornisman has often surrendered primarily as a means to buy time, waiting for an opportunity for revenge. Or to stab you in the foot.

I am stereotyping of course, there are feeble men in Dorne who would surrender at the drop of a hat and backstabbers in the Reach, but on a macro level I think this is accurate enough.

Meraxes could've been poisoned a number of ways, it might be easy enough to poison his/her meals by stuffing a cow/lamb/pig carcass full of something deadly. It becomes even more believable if you consider that there are already rumors that the Maesters or others poisoned some of the last dragons. Brandon Snow told King Torrhen that he could assassinate Aegon's three beasts, though there's no evidence he had poison in mind, the boldness of his plan at least suggests the possibility.

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Maegor seems to have been the first Targaryen knight, as Aegon probably didn't take Knightly vows (though it is possible, to be fair) and Aenys was a weak kid who maybe never became knighted at all. Safe enough to assume Maegor the warrior prodigy overcame Aenys' age head in any case.

There were probably a few Valyrian knights already, as many would've followed Aegon's example by converting to the Seven, and many others had probably married into Andal families. I am doubting the families that fled the Doom were strongly clinging to the old Valyrian gods after... y'know the whole population was destroyed by an apocalypse. Sure, they named their dragons after Valyrian gods, I'm not saying they lightly tossed away their old beliefs, just that the notion of adopting the local customs was probably not such a bitter pill.

idk about you guys but "Valyrian Knight" sounds really cool. There would've been Valyrian knights sworn to Lord Qoherys at Harrenhal, (who would've had exposure to the Isle of Faces). Plenty of Westerosi respect both the Old gods and the new, so you could have a Valyrian knight kneeling before the Harrenhal heart tree, then going to the sept to pray to the warrior, then uhhh doing some sort of Valyrian ritual... slashing a finger and letting some blood drop into a candle or hearth fire? Endless possibilities there. Harren the Red and his followers may have killed off much (or all) of the Valyrian blood in that area. They did apparently put the entire castle of Harrenhal to the sword, so I doubt they were nice to the surrounding towns and holdfasts.

The big question is did Maegor yell "first!!" after he was dubbed and go rush off to celebrate by torturing a puppy? What did the heart tree that saw a valyrian knight kneel in front of it for the first time, did it raise one eyebrow? did the knight turn to his squire and say, "did that tree just blink at me?"

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Wouldn't it be cool if the coat of arms showing dragon eating it's own tail referred to a poison so terrible that Meraxes really wanted to eat himself? Something similar to what killed Gregor Clegane on far larger scale? However unlikely that is.

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I'm not so sure if that whole poisoning thing is really a Dornish thing. Oberyn was infamous for using poison, but as of yet the rest of Dorne is not exactly famed for using poison. Especially since to poison a dragon would be a rather difficult thing to do, considering that they are magical creatures. Most likely one would need a magical poison to get rid of them, and those things would be costly and rare. But it would certainly be possible. In fact, it would be quite funny if the Citadel ended up using magical poison to get rid of the dragons who survive the Dance. It would show how hypocritical they can become. The end may indeed justify the means, even if the means are somewhat the antithesis of the end you try to bring about...

Veltigar,

the Serwyn story is a legend. So if a Targaryen dragon was killed this way, it must have happened between the Conquest and the Dance. It's indeed possible that the singer who came up with the Serwyn-Urrax-story was in turn inspired by real events. Although the whole thing could also just be a poor ploy to explore on the fact that Serwyn apparently wielded a Mirrorshield...

If I have to guess who successfully killed a few Targaryen dragons - although apparently not Meraxes - then my money would be of the Warrior's Sons during the Faith Militant Uprising, and perhaps also during Aenys' reign. He himself may have been killed by them. That is, if he was not poisoned or killed by his half-brother or aunt.

As to that: Considering that Visenya was a real warrior-queen, and the rider of Vhagar, I'm not really sure that she did need to murder her nephew. She would have wielded as much power during Aenys' rule as she had under Aegon. It has already been said that Aegon pretty much let his sisters rule. If Rhaenys died early, Visenya would have been the one calling the shots during most of Aegon's reign.

If we look at Aenys' personality, the guy seems to have been all about compromise, trying to win everybody's favor. I don't see why you have to kill such a guy if you are already calling most, if not all, of the shots. Visenya most certainly was still a very influential and power figure, and Maegor became Hand.

But upon Aenys' death Visenya and Maegor most certainly did all in their power to ensure that Maegor would become king. The really interesting thing is whether Visenya outlived Maegor as well as Aegon and Aenys.

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I'm not so sure if that whole poisoning thing is really a Dornish thing. Oberyn was infamous for using poison, but as of yet the rest of Dorne is not exactly famed for using poison.

Isn’t there a line in the book that says something like “poison, a weapon for cowards, women and Dornishmen”?

Especially since to poison a dragon would be a rather difficult thing to do, considering that they are magical creatures. Most likely one would need a magical poison to get rid of them, and those things would be costly and rare. But it would certainly be possible. In fact, it would be quite funny if the Citadel ended up using magical poison to get rid of the dragons who survive the Dance. It would show how hypocritical they can become. The end may indeed justify the means, even if the means are somewhat the antithesis of the end you try to bring about...

I’m still more inclined that the Dornish got rid of Meraxes by using something other than poison. IIRC Tyrion in ADWD says that for a dragon, death goes through the eye (and not through the mouth like some claim). He doesn’t say anything about poison so I think that at least Meraxes was killed by luring it into a trap and shooting/stabbing the dragon in its eye. Tyrion must have gotten this knowledge from somewhere.

Veltigar,

the Serwyn story is a legend. So if a Targaryen dragon was killed this way, it must have happened between the Conquest and the Dance. It's indeed possible that the singer who came up with the Serwyn-Urrax-story was in turn inspired by real events. Although the whole thing could also just be a poor ploy to explore on the fact that Serwyn apparently wielded a Mirrorshield...

An alternative scenario would be that the story is much older (IIRC dragons lived in Westeros in the age of heroes) and that the guy who killed Meraxes (just like Beyron Swann) was inspired by that story.

After the loss of Meraxes the Targaryens might have started to train their dragon to respond aggressively to a their own reflected image (e.g. just like you train a dog not to eat something given to him by strangers). Therefore Beyron, when trying the same trick, was roasted alive.

If I have to guess who successfully killed a few Targaryen dragons - although apparently not Meraxes - then my money would be of the Warrior's Sons during the Faith Militant Uprising, and perhaps also during Aenys' reign. He himself may have been killed by them. That is, if he was not poisoned or killed by his half-brother or aunt.

I think that the amount of dragons not killed by the Maesters and the first Dance of Dragons is quite low. And I think that most of those dragons, unlike Meraxes, would be young hatchlings. I mean we know that the Faith Militant was successfully able to infiltrate the Red Keep several times (the assassination attempts on Maegor). I can see them sneaking in to the dragon nursery and killing hatchlings and smashing/stealing eggs but I have a harder time seeing them kill full grown dragons in the dragon pitts.

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Isn’t there a line in the book that says something like “poison, a weapon for cowards, women and Dornishmen”?

Isn't it "Cravens, women and eunuchs?"

I can see them sneaking in to the dragon nursery and killing hatchlings and smashing/stealing eggs but I have a harder time seeing them kill full grown dragons in the dragon pitts.

The Dragonpit isn't in the Red Keep. (Edit: just realized you probably didn't mean to suggest that the dragon hatchings would be in the Red Keep.) Also I seem to remember there's evidence that at least some of the dragons were born on Dragonstone (other than the two that we know were.)

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Isn't it "Cravens, women and eunuchs?"

Oh, than I was wrong.

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'Women, cravens, and eunuchs' is the line Pycelle used in AGoT. Surely, the Dornishmen may use poison on a more regular basis than other peoples of Westeros, but it should be mostly connected to the ingenious animal population of Dorne (i.e. the vipers). I'm not sure that the Dornish are known for using obscure and magical poisons on a regular basis in warfare.

Veltigar,

I was not trying to say that Meraxes was most likely killed by poison, I was trying to point out that poisoning a dragon was most likely a very dangerous and long-term enterprise. Stabbing it with a poisoned weapon would be rather dangerous in itself, and if you do it as maester in Targaryen service, you most certainly will be detected. So if the maesters poisoned any dragons after the Dance, they would have done so by poisoning their food and/or the medicine they used to tend the wounds of the surviving dragons.

A spear through the eye could have killed Meraxes, I guess, but it would have to be a really lucky throw, considering the size of its head. Whoever used that spear would have to use extreme force to get through the eye into the brain. It would be much more likely if such a thing only half-blinded it or left a serious wound instead of outright killing it. And whoever did that would have a very small chance to get away alive.

So some sort of elaborate trap including perhaps many spear attacks in an environment where Meraxes could neither fly quickly away and/or use his fire is my best guess.

On the background of the Serwyn story: There is also an invented Princess Daeryssa Targaryen who was saved by Serwyn from giants in another song. This strongly suggests that the present order of society after the Conquest was projected back into the Age of Heroes to give the audience familiar settings. But it's still possible that the Serwyn/Beyron trick is rooted in reality. But to try in on Vhagar during the Dance- as Haldon originally believed - would have been utterly mad. That beast had 129 years to grow since the Conquest...

I'm also saying that there were all that much dragons killed pre-Dance. But there have to be some. There is the line about the Targaryen dragons being bred for war, 'and in war they died'. The number of dragons who were actually killed by maesters must have been rather small (or rather, the death of the dragons who survived the Dance and died during the reign of Aegon III must have been officially attributed to wounds they got in the war).

I'm still inclined to believe that Balerion died during another attempt to conquer Dorne, perhaps due to the overconfident exploits of one of Jaehaerys' children or grandchildren. During the rebellions and the Faith Militant Uprising the Warrior's Sons most likely were the most fanatical anti-Targaryen terrorists/warriors. Considering that Aenys bonded with his dragon Quicksilver as a youth, we have reason to assume that Quicksilver was of considerable size when Aenys ascended the Iron Throne. To kill it would not have been an easy task. And it's not impossible that a suicide attack by Warrior's Sons killed both Aenys and Quicksilver. We don't know yet how Aenys died. Assuming that Maegor refused to bond with a dragon as a youth, we have also to assume that other Targaryen dragons hatched after the Conquest. I'm quite sure all of Aenys' siblings got their dragons, perhaps there were even more. Maegor apparently had more than one dragon to choose.

All those dragons would have been small at, say, 10 AC, but certainly not in 37 AC, when Aenys ascended the Iron Throne and the rebellions broke out.

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No, you're right it is Dornishmen in that line, said by Victarion. Not the most learned guy, though.

Though maybe it is said the other way too.

oops.

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