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Stubby

R+L=J v 59

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Carry on Speculating*.

* Not a silly British comedy from the late sixties...

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Reference guide

The Tower of the Hand has an excellent analysis of this theory:

Jon Snow's Parents

And Westeros' Citadel also provides a summary:

Jon Snow's Parents

A Wiki of Ice and Fire:

Jon Snow Theories

Frequently Asked Questions:

How can Jon be a Targaryen if he has a burned hand?

Targaryens are not immune to fire. Aerion Brightflame died drinking wildfire. Aegon V and his son Duncan are thought to have died in a fire-related event at Summerhall. Rhaenyra was eaten by Aegon II's dragon, presumably roasted by fire before the dragon took a bite. Viserys died when he was crowned with molten gold. Dany suffered burns from the fire pit incident at the end of A Dance with Dragons. Finally, the author has stated outright that Targaryens are not immune to fire. Jon's burned hand does not mean he is ineligible to be part Targaryen. For more information about the myth of Targaryen fire immunity, see this thread.

How can Jon be a Targ if he doesn't have silver hair and purple eyes?

Not all Targaryens had the typical Valyrian look. Alysanne had blue eyes. Baelor Breakspear and his son(s) had the Dornish look. Some of the Great Bastards did not have typical Valyrian features. Jon's own half-sister Rhaenys had her mother's Dornish look.

If Jon isn't Ned's son, then why does he look so much like him?

Much is made over the fact that Arya looks like Lyanna, and Jon looks like Arya. Ned and Lyanna shared similar looks.

How can Jon be half-Targ if he has a direwolf?

Ned's trueborn children are half Stark and half Tully. Being half Tully didn't prevent them from having a direwolf so there is no reason to think being half Targaryen would prevent Jon from having a direwolf. If Lyanna is his mother, then he's still half Stark. Furthermore, there is already a character who is half Targaryen and half blood of the First Men and was a skinchanger: Bloodraven.

Since Rhaegar was already married, wouldn't Jon still be a bastard?

The evidence that Jon is legitimate is that Targaryens have a history of polygamous marriages which makes it a possibility that Rhaegar had two wives. Three Kingsguards were present at the Tower of Joy when Ned arrived. Even after Ned said that Aerys, Rhaegar and Aegon were dead and Viserys had fled to Dragonstone, the Kingsguard opted to stay at the Tower of Joy stating they were obeying their Kingsguard vow. The heart of a Kingsguard's vow is to protect the king. With Aerys, Rhaegar and Aegon dead, the new king would have been Viserys, unless Lyanna's child was legitimate making him the new king of the Targaryen dynasty. For a comprehensive analysis of Jon's legitimacy, see the detailed explanations in the two linked articles.

But polygamy hadn't been practiced in centuries, is it still even legal?

The practice was never made illegal and there may have been some less prominent examples after Maegor, as stated in this SSM. Furthermore, Jorah suggests it to Dany as a viable option.

Weren't the Kingsguard at Tower of Joy on the basis of an order from Aerys, to guard Lyanna as a hostage?

Aerys was sane enough to realize how taking someone hostage works even at the end of the Rebellion, and he would hardly miss the opportunity to bring Ned and Robert in line any time after the situation started to look really serious. Furthermore, regardless of on whose order the Kingsguard might have stayed at Tower of Joy, they would still be in dereliction of their duty to guard the new king.

This theory is too obvious and too many people believe it to be fact. How can it be true?

The theory is not obvious to the majority of readers. Some will get it on first read, most will not. Keep in mind that readers who go to online fan forums, such as this one, represent a very small minority of the A Song of Ice and Fire readership. Also, A Game of Thrones has been out since 1996. That's more than 17 years of readers being able to piece together this mystery.

Why doesn't Ned ever think about Lyanna being Jon's mother?

Ned doesn't think about anyone as being his mother. He says the name 'Wylla' to Robert, but does not actively think that Wylla is the mother. He also doesn't think of Jon as his son. There are numerous mysteries in the series, and Jon's parentage is one of those. If Ned thought about Jon being Lyanna's son, it would not be a mystery.

Why should we care who Jon's parents are? Will Jon care? Who cares if he's legitimate?

Once one accepts that the evidence is conclusive and that Jon's parents are Rhaegar and Lyanna and that he is most probably legitimate, these become the important questions.

Previous editions:

Lyanna + Rhaegar = Jon Thread” (thread one)

Lyanna + Rhaegar = Jon Thread” (thread two)

The Lyanna + Rhaegar = Jon thread (Part III)” (thread three)

The Lyanna + Rhaegar = Jon thread (Part IV)” (thread four)

The Lyanna + Rhaegar = Jon Thread (Part V)” (thread five)

The Lyanna + Rhaegar = Jon Thread (Part VI)” (thread six)

The Rhaegar + Lyanna = Jon Thread Part VII” (thread seven)

The Rhaegar + Lyanna = Jon thread, Part VIII” (thread eight)

The Rhaegar + Lyanna = Jon thread, Part IX” (thread nine)

The Rhaegar + Lyanna =Jon Thread, Part X”(thread ten)

The R+L=J thread, part XI” (thread eleven)

The R+L=J thread, part XII” (thread twelve)

R+L=J Part XXIII” (thread thirteen)

R+L=J Part XXIV” (thread fourteen)

R+L=J XXV” (thread fifteen)

R+L=J v.16” (thread sixteen)

R+L=J v.17” (thread seventeen)

R+L=J v.18” (thread eighteen)

R+L=J v.19” (thread nineteen)

R+L=J v.20” (thread twenty)

R+L=J v.21” (thread twenty-one)

R+L=J v.22” (thread twenty-two)

R+L=J v.22a” (thread twenty-two (a))

R+L=J v.23” (thread twenty-three)

R+L=J v.24” (thread twenty-four)

R+L=J v.25” (thread twenty-five)

R+L=J v.26” (thread twenty-six)

R+L=J v.27” (thread twenty-seven)

R+L=J v.28” (thread twenty-eight)

R+L=J v.29” (thread twenty-nine)

R+L=J v.30” (thread thirty)

R+L=J v.31” (thread thirty-one)

R+L=J v.32” (thread thirty-two)

R+L=J #33” (thread thirty-three)

R+L=J v.34” (thread thirty-four)

R+L=J v.35” (thread thirty-five)

R+L=J v.36” (thread thirty-six)

R+L=J v.37” (thread thirty-seven)

R+L=J v.38” (thread thirty-eight)

R+L=J v.39” (thread thirty-nine)

"R+L=J v.40" (thread forty)

"R+L=J v. 41" (thread forty-one)

"R+L=J v.42" (thread forty-two)

"R+L=J v.43" (thread forty-three)

"R+L=J v.44" (thread forty-four)

"R+L=J v.45" (thread forty-five)

"R+L=J v.46" (thread forty-six)

"R+L=J v.47" (thread forty-seven)

"R+L=J v.48" (thread forty-eight)

"R+L=J v.49" (thread forty-nine)

"R+L=J v.50" (thread fifty)

"R+L=J v.51" (thread fifty-one)

"R+L=J v.52" (thread fifty-two)

"R+L=J v.53" (thread fifty-three)

"R+L=J v.54" (thread fifty=four)

"R+L=J v.55" (thread fifty-five)

"R+L=J v.56" (thread fifty-six)

"R+L=J v.57" (thread fifty-seven)

"R+L=J v 58" (thread fifty-eight)

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Here is a question from somebody new to Jon Snow being the child of Rhaegar & Lyanna. Somebody direct me to which of the 58 (!) threads if this is already addressed.

If Jon R & L son, how is he going to find out? Which character is going to inform him, as well as which characters will not only inform but also persuade Westeros?

Ned Stark kept the secret from his wife. Who would he tell? His brother? Is this the role that Benjen Stark will play, whenever and however he makes his reappearance? I can't think of another that Ned would have entrusted this secret other than to Benjen if he did not tell Catelyn, other than cryptically by saying that Jon was his blood and that was all that should concern her.

Will it be revealed to Melisrandre in a way she understands, not just the swirling "snow" she sees in her fire?

Who is there left from the old Targaryen court that might know this secret?

Varys?

Is the secret known to powers at the Citadel? A Maester would have attended the birth and a raven could have been dispatched....

Or will this be "seen" by Brandon as we have glimpsed that he can see things in the past through the eyes of the weirwood trees. WIll he see and hear this from a confession from Ned or Lyanna as they pray to the old gods?

Any other suggestions or speculations?

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Here is a question from somebody new to Jon Snow being the child of Rhaegar & Lyanna. Somebody direct me to which of the 58 (!) threads if this is already addressed.

If Jon R & L son, how is he going to find out? Which character is going to inform him, as well as which characters will not only inform but also persuade Westeros?

Ned Stark kept the secret from his wife. Who would he tell? His brother? Is this the role that Benjen Stark will play, whenever and however he makes his reappearance? I can't think of another that Ned would have entrusted this secret other than to Benjen if he did not tell Catelyn, other than cryptically by saying that Jon was his blood and that was all that should concern her.

Will it be revealed to Melisrandre in a way she understands, not just the swirling "snow" she sees in her fire?

Who is there left from the old Targaryen court that might know this secret?

Varys?

Is the secret known to powers at the Citadel? A Maester would have attended the birth and a raven could have been dispatched....

Or will this be "seen" by Brandon as we have glimpsed that he can see things in the past through the eyes of the weirwood trees. WIll he see and hear this from a confession from Ned or Lyanna as they pray to the old gods?

Any other suggestions or speculations?

Hi and welcome to the boards. If your looking for info on who might tell Jon, we can't actually say who for certain. But here is a short list of who might. And yes this has been a regular topic on the R+l=J threads so I can't really point you to one thread. Though if you want and you are interested in this topic you can always take your time skim through 1-58 which will take some time but it's not like you have to do it all at one or ever for that matter.

The list

1. Howland Reed is probably the most common name. Howland was Ned Starks most trusted Banner men and very close friend they kept in contact via crow over the years. Howland is the only other person known to have witnessed the events at the Tower of Joy which is believed by many to be Jon's place of birth.

2. Some believe Ben Stark may have insight into Jon parents, though how or what he may know is uncertain. Some think it is why he went to the wall.

3. Bran Stark, Bran is prophetic and can also view the past, he may learn of what happened at the tower.

4. Brynden Rivers aka Bloodraven, same as Bran, though widely believed he already knows. I personally support this theory at least the part about him knowing.

5. Wylla and the Daynes, Wylla was Jons wet nurse while he was at Starfall, we know Starfall has lied to protect the turth about Jon. At least it's like 99% possible they did. There is no 100 percent at this point.

Hope this helps.

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@Summer Islands

Willkommen to the forums! :)

It's usually accepted that Howland Reed will play some part in the revelation. Other candidates are Wylla, Bran (and Septon Meribald), or people like Barristan, Jaime who were familiar with Targaryens - some believe that Jon does in fact look at least a tiny little bit like Rhaegar.

We could count the dragons, I think however - Brown Ben Plumm is well liked by Dany's dragons, and he has some Targaryen blood. Tyrion later reveals that dragons may be able to recognize 'dragon blood'. So I suppose when the dragons come to westeros, and one of them takes a liking to Jon Snow, someone is bound to ask questions - and no, I'm not saying Jon will be a dragon rider, just that the dragons should, based on the info. we have, like his dragon blood.

It's been speculated that Benjen knew. Not necessarily because Ned told him, but simply because knowing what he knew about both Lyanna and Ned, he might have been able to piece things together.

GRRM has the only true answers to these questions....

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@Summer Islands

Willkommen to the forums! :)

It's usually accepted that Howland Reed will play some part in the revelation. Other candidates are Wylla, Bran (and Septon Meribald), or people like Barristan, Jaime who were familiar with Targaryens - some believe that Jon does in fact look at least a tiny little bit like Rhaegar.

We could count the dragons, I think however - Brown Ben Plumm is well liked by Dany's dragons, and he has some Targaryen blood. Tyrion later reveals that dragons may be able to recognize 'dragon blood'. So I suppose when the dragons come to westeros, and one of them takes a liking to Jon Snow, someone is bound to ask questions - and no, I'm not saying Jon will be a dragon rider, just that the dragons should, based on the info. we have, like his dragon blood.

It's been speculated that Benjen knew. Not necessarily because Ned told him, but simply because knowing what he knew about both Lyanna and Ned, he might have been able to piece things together.

GRRM has the only true answers to these questions....

Jaime and Selmy??? Well yeah I guess, Neds story is a bit like Clark Kent's glasses. "Sorry ignore this baby I just came back from Starfall with, totally got Wylla pregnant and had a bastard in that month I was away. Which then again makes the Ashara cover up that much better for him."

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Here is a question from somebody new to Jon Snow being the child of Rhaegar & Lyanna. Somebody direct me to which of the 58 (!) threads if this is already addressed.

If Jon R & L son, how is he going to find out? Which character is going to inform him, as well as which characters will not only inform but also persuade Westeros?

Ned Stark kept the secret from his wife. Who would he tell? His brother? Is this the role that Benjen Stark will play, whenever and however he makes his reappearance? I can't think of another that Ned would have entrusted this secret other than to Benjen if he did not tell Catelyn, other than cryptically by saying that Jon was his blood and that was all that should concern her.

Will it be revealed to Melisrandre in a way she understands, not just the swirling "snow" she sees in her fire?

Who is there left from the old Targaryen court that might know this secret?

Varys?

Is the secret known to powers at the Citadel? A Maester would have attended the birth and a raven could have been dispatched....

Or will this be "seen" by Brandon as we have glimpsed that he can see things in the past through the eyes of the weirwood trees. WIll he see and hear this from a confession from Ned or Lyanna as they pray to the old gods?

Any other suggestions or speculations?

Welcome to the Forums :cheers:

I think Jon will find out not by Howland, like everyone thinks, but maybe Bran who will communicate to Jon some how and tell him maybe he saw R+L's wedding through a Weirwood, and then Jojen, who's been told by Howland, or maybe he's seen it himself through green dreams; the truth about Jon. I think Howland will be one the people who will come forth and tell the people of the North first.

I think Benjen knew before Ned. Ben and Lyanna were close, Bran seeing them play fighting shows us that. So I think maybe Ben knew and maybe helped Lya and Rhaegar rife away in the night, with the help of Oswell and Dayne, and he was going to tell Brandon and Rickard but he couldn't because Brandon had gone to KL in a fury. And then he felt gulity for the deaths of his father and brother and joined the NW early.

I think Mels will find either from Jon, who tells her, or when everyone else does and from someone else. Or she may see something in her flames, maybe something to do with a dragon at the Wall, and not realise it until Jon tells them.

Bloodraven, who is one of Aegon IV's Great Bastards, in the Three Eyed Crow; so I think he knows and is Skinchanging Mormonts raven and that's why it says "king" in front of Jon. Bloodraven knows Jon is the heir to the Targ Throne. Varys is thought to be a Blackfyre, and helping Illyrio get Aegon, whose a Blackfyre on the Throne posing as a Targ. Serra, who was Illyrio's second wife, is sister to Varys and mother to Aegon.

I think that Wylla, who was a wetnurse at Starfall knows, as she was brought to the Tower of Joy to help Lyanna in her pregnancy, and I think some Daynes knows, or did know about it. Unless there's a Dayne we don't know whose of the age of Ashara or Ser Arthur, there might not be a Dayne who knows. But I don't think the Citadel knows, or Varys through his little birds.

I think Bloodraven might show Bran clues of R+L. Brief memories through the Weirwood until they get to the wedding and Jojen or Bloodraven, maybe together, about Jon's true parentage.

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Jaime and Selmy??? Well yeah I guess, Neds story is a bit like Clark Kent's glasses. "Sorry ignore this baby I just came back from Starfall with, totally got Wylla pregnant and had a bastard in that month I was away. Which then again makes the Ashara cover up that much better for him."

You know...I'm thinking that it would be kind of nice if Olenna Tyrell puzzled that out....She's smart, perceptive and has lived long enough to know lies from truth IMO. So, if there is a chance/possibility that the Tyrells must change camp again, I doubt Olenna would buy the whole Varys/JonCon/(f)Aegon plot. After that, it would be up to them if they chose to ally with (f)Aegon and turn a blind eye to his true identity, or if...they sought allies further up north...It's reasonable to think that the Tyrells will try to distance themselves from Lannisters. We can’t predict if/how they would meet or hear about Jon Snow...but there are possibilities. There is a sweet girl hiding in the Vale, who could give them the crown in the North, and it's possible too, that the GNC comes to happen, in which case, Jon would be the next available throne pretender on Margaery's list.

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I do not think that Olenna Tyrell would be interested in the parentage of the bastard son of a traitor to the throne who is at the Wall and appearantly murdered being the offspring of that traitors sister and the heir of a dead dynasty, when there are already two legitimate heirs of the mentioned dynasty. When they abandon the Lannisters, Tyrells will most likely flock to Aegon first, but since Arianne is the likely queen for her, they will go to Dany and try to marry Willas or Garlan to her as Prince consort.

I think we will learn R+L=J through Bloodraven if we consider the evidence that he is looking out for Jon.

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All those 'great' Houses of the south are going to show just how desperate they are to marry the Throne. Nice to know they show exactly whom to stay away from, they're nothing but power hungry plotters. They've a great chance for their children to die. :D

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I do not think that Olenna Tyrell would be interested in the parentage of the bastard son of a traitor to the throne who is at the Wall and appearantly murdered being the offspring of that traitors sister and the heir of a dead dynasty, when there are already two legitimate heirs of the mentioned dynasty. When they abandon the Lannisters, Tyrells will most likely flock to Aegon first, but since Arianne is the likely queen for her, they will go to Dany and try to marry Willas or Garlan to her as Prince consort.

I think we will learn R+L=J through Bloodraven if we consider the evidence that he is looking out for Jon.

Garlan is married to Leonette Fossoway.

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I don't think anyone would be silly enough to marry Margaery Tyrell after she married all available male Lannister bastards.

Aye, I didn't say marry, but look to the north :) . I think they will try to sell Margaery to one or the other new King, I'm not so sure anyone would want to marry Margaery though....If Tommen dies, people will start to suspect foul play, or think Margaery is cursed....

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I do not think that Olenna Tyrell would be interested in the parentage of the bastard son of a traitor to the throne who is at the Wall and appearantly murdered being the offspring of that traitors sister and the heir of a dead dynasty, when there are already two legitimate heirs of the mentioned dynasty. When they abandon the Lannisters, Tyrells will most likely flock to Aegon first, but since Arianne is the likely queen for her, they will go to Dany and try to marry Willas or Garlan to her as Prince consort.

I think we will learn R+L=J through Bloodraven if we consider the evidence that he is looking out for Jon.

Until a fourteen, or fifteen year old Arya has to come back home, and then trouble all over again for the men of Westeros........

She's twelve at the end of aDwD, and the Faceless Men had already offered to send her to one of the greatest Courtesans in Braavos if she so desired.

So, I think the Tyrells will have a lot more to worry about than just the Martells, or the Lannisters as they keep passing Marg around to the next King.

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Wouldn't it be awesome if we have a Howland Reed POV to start WOW?!?! Or maybe in the prologue??? I know... I know here come the crusty old trowlers to blast at me that GRRM said no new characters - but Reed isnt a new character....

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The Stark colors are gray and white. A gray direwolf on a white field. We know that bastards reverse their House colors so if Jon left the NW and chose to do that his sigil would be a white direwolf on agray field. He's been set up as the bastard son of Eddard Stark and possibly the future King in the North. He is tormented by nightmares about his family and Winterfell's crypts where he has no place as a bastard, he wants to have a place at Winterfell in the North, House Targaryen and their dragons mean nothing to him, his mission is to stop the Others and his desire is to have Winterfell. Why would GRRM put in all this detail only to make him Rhaegar's son and possibly sit the Iron Throne, which he would never want?

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The Stark colors are gray and white. A gray direwolf on a white field. We know that bastards reverse their House colors so if Jon left the NW and chose to do that his sigil would be a white direwolf on agray field. He's been set up as the bastard son of Eddard Stark and possibly the future King in the North. He is tormented by nightmares about his family and Winterfell's crypts where he has no place as a bastard, he wants to have a place at Winterfell in the North, House Targaryen and their dragons mean nothing to him, his mission is to stop the Others and his desire is to have Winterfell. Why would GRRM put in all this detail only to make him Rhaegar's son and possibly sit the Iron Throne, which he would never want?

The Others come south, and those in the north must retreat. Those in the south begin to see the horrors that they face from the others. Jon is fighting against the Others, but needs the support of the entire realm to claw out victory. The lords paramount make him king, against his wishes, but knowing that it is for the defense of the realm that he must serve his duty. Then he learns that it was his birthright all along.

Thought provoking.

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The Others come south, and those in the north must retreat. Those in the south begin to see the horrors that they face from the others. Jon is fighting against the Others, but needs the support of the entire realm to claw out victory. The lords paramount make him king, against his wishes, but knowing that it is for the defense of the realm that he must serve his duty. Then he learns that it was his birthright all along.

Thought provoking.

Why make Jon king over Dany when she has dragons? Also, what are the chances that Howland talks to Jon before Arya? Arya will tell him his mom is Wylla.

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