Winter is Coming: Symbols and Hidden Meanings in A Game of Thrones

Winter is Coming: Symbols and Hidden Meanings in A Game of Thrones

Valerie Estelle Frankel

Language: English

Pages: 154

ISBN: 0692591591

Format: PDF / Kindle (mobi) / ePub


Game of Thrones fans watch in delight as the epic battle of Lannister and Stark entangles the Seven Kingdoms. But only the sharpest notice how these houses echo Lancaster and York in the War of the Roses. Druids, Catholics, and even Zoroastrians wander through Westeros, reframing their religions for a new world of fantasy. But how medieval is Westeros? Did lady knights and pirates really battle across Europe? The book Winter is Coming: Symbols and Hidden Meanings in A Game of Thrones explores all this and more, from the echoes of history to the symbols and omens our beloved characters. Who is Jon Snow’s mother and why is she a secret? What is Daenerys’s real power, unknown even to her? Will these two characters share a destiny? Where is the red priestess’s real Lightbringer and when will it arrive? Through dreams and prophecies, imagery and allegory, the deepest secrets of the series unfold, in an exploration friendly to watchers and readers alike.

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by fire, he discovers how to kill a wight and is rewarded with the hero sword Longclaw, though the salt is less clear in that scene. The stone dragons (on Dragonstone? With the Horn of Winter?) are more intriguing. His Night’s Watch oath holds him to be the sword in the darkness, which could literally come true as Azor Ahai. Jon has also killed Quoron Halfhand for duty, and is no stranger to sacrificing those he loves. However, a larger sacrifice in the future is probably waiting. Jon was

way, unlike so many other kings: Aegon has been shaped for rule since before he could walk. He has been trained in arms, as befits a knight to be, but that was not the end of his education. He reads and writes, he speaks several tongues, he has studied history and law and poetry. A septa has instructed him in the mysteries of the Faith since he was old enough to understand them. He has lived with fisherfolk, worked with his hands, swum in rivers and mended nets and learned to wash his own

it—an excellent example of the way in which the more official paganism fell before Christianity, while the older religion of the soil, from which it sprang, could not be entirely eradicated.27 Tacitus tells us that the druids’ sacred groves were destroyed at the time of the conquest. In just this way, the advent of the new gods sees the abandonment of the heart trees, while Melisandre and her red god set fire to sacred groves, tearing them from the earth. The Old Gods are losing power as the

to awaken? Could it wake dragons? Or the ice dragons of Nan’s tales? At the other end of the world, in Old Valyria, Theon’s uncle discovers a mysterious horn of fire called Dragonbinder that’s fabled to control dragons. Black with red gold and Valyrian steel, it feels warm to the touch. (Maester Aemon is suspicious of Stannis’s Lightbringer specifically because it doesn’t feel warm.) Its inscription of “Blood for Fire, Fire for Blood” matches the Targaryen motto, “Fire and Blood” and also the

greatest warrior of his age. Catelyn asks Ned once. “Never ask me about Jon,” he said, cold as ice. “He is my blood, and that is all you need to know. And now I will learn where you heard that name, my lady.” She had pledged to obey; she told him; and from that day on, the whispering had stopped, and Ashara Dayne’s name was never heard in Winterfell again. (I:65) Ned and his friends killed Ser Arthur Dayne at the Tower of Joy under mysterious circumstances, and then took his fabled sword

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