What are the vows of a knight?

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Knights are an essential part of Southron culture in Westeros. Associated with Andal culture and the Faith, these warriors take vows not just of martial strength and skill, but of chivalry and honour.

But many of the knights that we meet in Westeros tend to place more weight on their skills with a lance or sword, than on their code of honour or chivalry. All too often, the honour that they’re concerned with is social status and prestige, rather than remembering to do all those things they vowed to do, like defend the innocent and vulnerable.

But what makes a knight a knight?

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Realpolitik in Westeros: The Sworn Sword

I love the Dunk and Egg novellas for many reasons, but I had always preferred the first and third novellas to the second, The Sworn Sword. But now I’m listening to the Harry Lloyd read audiobook via Audible.

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Dunk and Egg by arthatake

I read really fast, so sometimes I think I unintentionally skip over things. Listening to the story being told brings on a new way of experiencing the story, and for shorter stories like this that I devoured so quickly, makes me slow down and appreciate it.

It’s really struck me how important this novella is to understanding the game of thrones as it plays out in ASOIAF. We learn that power is in the eye of the beholder, not necessarily where bloodlines and law say it is. We also learn the impact of the first Blackfyre Rebellion, played out on a small stage in the conflict between Ser Eustace Osgrey of Standfast and Lady Rohane Webber, the “Red Widow” of Coldmoat in the Reach in the days of King Aerys I, when men said the king read books and scrolls of prophecy while bastard born Bloodraven, Hand of the King, ran the kingdom.

In amongst this we have the lessons learned by Ser Duncan the Tall and his squire, Egg, also known as Aegon Targaryen, son of Prince Maekar Targaryen of Summerhall, who would one day go on to be King Aegon, Fifth of His Name….

Continue reading “Realpolitik in Westeros: The Sworn Sword”