Origins of the Iron Throne?

Recently, George RR Martin wrote that few artists render the iron throne the way he imagined it. In fact, on his blog, he provides a picture of Marc Simonetti’s depiction of the iron throne – an enormous monstrosity so large you have to mount it by climbing steps. Today, while reading J.R. Lander’s Wars of the Roses, I stumbled across a picture that made me wonder if it planted a seed for the iron throne in GRRM’s mind a long time…

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The Unsullied and the Battle of Thermopylae

Recently, somebody posted a compelling comment that maybe the Unsullied weren’t based on the Spartans but were based on the Mamluks.  He wrote: I enjoy reading your posts. I’m not sure that I agree with you that the Unsullied are based on the Spartans. Would a better comparison perhaps be the Mamluks, the great medieval slave army that defeated the Mongols and the Crusaders? It would seem to make more sense, especially as the Spartans took great pride in themselves…

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dany-unsullied

Sparta: The Inspiration Behind the Unsullied?

Recently, in the comments of this post, “K. Wolf” asked if I take requests (I do) and if I could write an article about the Unsullied. He wrote, “I read book 3 <Storm of Swords> and I was wondering about the Unsullied. Their training seemed unbelievably cruel and I was wondering if that was based on real history.” There are many parallels between the Unsullied, the disciplined eunuch-warrior slaves,  and Spartan history. In fact, there are so many similarities it…

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New Fledgling Book List

I’ve added a new book list about the Wars of the Roses. (Sorry it has taken me so long to fix the broken menu link from the homepage.) The list is still very basic and rough.  I’ve only jotted down a few books that came to mind – some for people who know nothing about the Wars of the Roses and some for buffs. If you know of any great books on the period, please add them to the comments…

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Cersei and Margaret of Anjou (part 2)

This post continues from Margaret of Anjou’s Influence on Cersei Lannister. Like Cersei after Robert’s death, Margaret had to unofficially function as the head of government. When Henry VI went “mad” and lapsed into an unresponsive state for nine months, Margaret tried to hold the various factions together to prevent other claimants from usurping Henry. In Cersei’s case, the Baratheon brothers and Robb Stark both threatened to oust the Lannisters from the throne.  In Margaret’s case, the disaffected Richard of York…

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Margaret of Anjou’s Influence on Cersei Lannister

Cersei Lannister shares many personality traits (and some story lines or events) with Queen Margaret of Anjou, wife of Henry VI—the “Mad King” defeated in the first phase of the Wars of the Roses. Both women were good-looking, commanding, indomitable, and fiercely devoted to their children, regardless of their flaws. Rumors of infidelity plagued the two queens. Their subjects despised them and they had few loyal followers. In addition, both women had a permissive attitude towards their reputedly monstrous sons….

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