February, 2014

More about Sigils

George RR Martin recommends some  history books on his website, so I decided to order a few. The Dictionary of Heraldry arrived the other day. I opened it up, and low and behold, the first few pages are filled with the seals of England’s oldest noble families: the Percys, de Veres, Stranges, and others.  These seals date back to the first centuries after the Norman conquest. What’s most interesting about these early seals is that they include the word “SIGILLUM” on…

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A Valentine for Tywin: That Bastard (Feudal) Poster Boy

Call this a late Valentine, but I love Game of Thrones‘ villain Tywin Lannister – even when he is at his most heinous. As the Machiavellian mastermind behind the Red Wedding, Tywin dwells down there with villains like Cersei, Joffrey, and the Boltons. Still, from a literary and historical perspective, Tywin gives us a lot to love. Tywin exemplifies the old guard in early phases of the Wars of the Roses: the brutal veterans of the Hundred Years’ War. You can’t…

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A Valentine for Tywin: That Bastard (Feudalism) Poster Boy

Call this a late Valentine, but I love Game of Thrones‘ villain Tywin Lannister – even when he is at his most heinous. As the Machiavellian mastermind behind the Red Wedding, Tywin dwells down there with villains like Cersei, Joffrey, and the Boltons. Still, from a literary and historical perspective, Tywin gives us a lot to love. Tywin exemplifies the old guard in early phases of the Wars of the Roses: the brutal veterans of the Hundred Years’ War. You can’t…

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Gilly & The Gillyflower

Poor sweet Gilly is one of Craster’s wives, the disgusting polygamous quarrelsome man north of the wall who marries his daughters. Samwell Tarly befriends Gilly and rescues her after she delivers a would-have-been-sacrificed baby boy. Gilly mentions the origin of her name in passing: “Gilly” stems (no pun intended) from the gillyflower, which is the old-fashioned name Chaucer, Shakespeare, and others use for carnations.

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Requests

Some of the best articles on this website came from readers’ ideas. We love receiving requests. This page shows the latest. Jump to requests. The Fine Print Please note that requests may take a surprisingly long time (think: months) to be written and not all requests are possible. How long it takes for us to write an article varies according to what we are currently researching and other articles planned. Currently Jamie is researching the Hundred Years’ War, so it…

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History Behind Game of Thrones Featured in Mashable

Okay, featured might be a little strong, but we were thrilled to see this witty reference to “History Behind Game of Thrones” in this fantastic article by Sarah Ang at Mashable. Sarah Ang did a great job writing this article – it has lots of fascinating and clever tidbits. Definitely check it out.  

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Season 4 Trailer Hints that the Lannister’s Debts Will Be Repaid

Game of Thrones promise for Season 4? Lots of excitement, intrigue, more powerful characters, and perhaps, finally, the hope of somebody repaying the Lannisters for all the harm they’ve caused. But underlying all of that, Season 4 promises a deeper dive into war’s moral quandary. The trailer suggests the themes in the first four  A Song of Fire and Ice novels—all named after various aspects of succession wars—will be more fully realized: war, revenge, justice. It’s tempting to see your…

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The Excitement is Building: Game of Thrones – Season 4 Premiere Date, Previews

It’s very exciting that HBO finally announced the Season 4 Game of Thrones premiere data is on April 6, 2014. I realize that some of you reading are probably fans of the books and might not even like the TV show, but I love it. (In fact, I just added a countdown timer to the sidebar.) The set design, costumes, attention detail, and panoramic scope and extras (think: the horde) all bring the books to life in a concrete visceral…

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