The central hypothesis of the mythical astronomy theory is that many of the ancient legends of Westeros and the rest of the “Planetos” are actually telling us about the global cataclysm which is known as the Long Night through the use of symbolism and metaphor.  This would be consistent with mythology in real life, which is quite often based on observation of the heavens and the cycles and characteristics of nature and its forces.In the first essay, I’m going to dive into the Azor Ahai / Lightbringer myth and try to explain how I interpret it to be referring to the events of the Long Night.  I’ll be comparing the various legends and myths of the story to the main characters and their symbolism, and to scenes which I think contain metaphorical references to the Long Night events.  As you’ll quickly see, I do not think George chooses his descriptive language haphazardly, but rather with the utmost intention.  The reoccurring turns of phrase that we find throughout the books create a tapestry of symbolism which is remarkably consistent, and I would suggest, meaningful.  For me, it all started coming together when I noticed that the moon cracks in both the Azor Ahai story and the Qarthine “origin of dragons” story…For a more thorough discussion of George’s use of symbol, metaphor, and esoterism in ASOIAF, click the ‘methodology’ tab above.  If you’d like to hear about the evolution of this project, click the ‘about’ tab.  Otherwise, just dive on in to the first essay, or if you prefer, I will read you the essay aloud as you clean your house or drive to work.  That’s right, each essay has also been recorded as a matching podcast which can be found at the top of each essay page as well as on iTunes.To be notified when a new essay and podcast are released, please follow the blog here on WordPress or subscribe to Mythical Astronomy of Ice and Fire on iTunes. The podcast RSS feed can be found here.

Mythical Astronomy & History of Westeros present…

Part 2: The Great Empire of the Dawn

Part 1: Asshai by the Shadow

Our collaboration with History of Westeros has become a two part series on the dragonlords of the Dawn Age.  These are available as a video or a podcast only, no accompanying essay.  You can watch here or listen on iTunes.  I hope you all enjoy it, we had a great time making it! Check out all the rest of the great History of Westeros videos on their youtube channel.

Bloodstone Compendium

I: Astronomy Explains the Legends of Ice and Fire
II: The Bloodstone Emperor Azor Ahai
III: Waves of Night and Moon Blood
IV: The Mountain vs. the Viper and the Hammer of the Waters
V: Tyrion Targaryen
VI: Lucifer means Lightbringer

Moons of Ice and Fire

I: Shadow Heart Mother
II: Dawn of the Others
III: Visenya Draconis
IV: The Long Night Was His to Rule
V: R+L=J, A Recipe for Ice Dragons

Sacred Order of Green Zombies

I: The Last Hero and the King of Corn
II: King of Winter, Lord of Death
III: The Long Night’s Watch

Weirwood Compendium

I: The Grey King and the Sea Dragon
II: A Burning Brandon
III: Garth of the Gallows
IV: In a Grove of Ash

Weirwood Goddess

I: Venus of the Woods
II: It’s an Arya Thing
III: The Cat Woman Nissa Nissa

LmL on Facebook

Friends & Family

• The Last Hearth forum

History of Westeros

• Radio Westeros

• The Amber Compendium

Mythological Weave of Ice & Fire

• Echoes of Ice and Fire

• Blue Winter Roses

• Pawn to Player

• War & Politics of Ice & Fire

• Weirwood Leviathan

• Culture Wars of Ice & Fire

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Podcast music courtesy of Animals as Leaders

123 thoughts on “

  1. Have you looked at the Epic of Gilgamesh as an influence to ASOIAF? Specifically, there is the sha naqba imuru version, which has lots of interesting symbol parallels (ravens, burnt brick, lapis-lazuli, bulls, cataclysmic flood). Gilgamesh is described as a king “surpassing all kings” and a guy who “sought life without death.” The original title, based on the opening words of the epic poem, was “He Who Saw the Deep,” meaning deep wisdom and knowledge. You might have mentioned this in a previous episode, but there’s a lot to chew on in your podcast and I might be forgetting if so! Still, considering the analogy of greenseeing to drowning (‘if you stay too long you won’t come back’), and the Iron Islands both having a likely greenseeing ancient ruler (Grey King) and praying to the Drowned God…well you get it. The Deep Ones aren’t squishers or fish people, the legend seems to be a misinterpretation by generations of people thinking deep could only refer to the distance underneath the seas.

    Liked by 1 person

  2. Deeply enjoyed listening to Quinn and yourself lastsest collaboration, hope it continues. When you talk about the symbiotic relationship between the Coft and Weirwoods , reminds me of the ant and acacia tree. The ants live in and are fed by the tree , and they protect it.
    When you were discussing the “dead things in the water” I felt there was a massive oversight no Great wight shark pun.
    Looking forward to expanding on your lastest theory in the future.


  3. I noticed that the Vale and its landmarks are like both male and female reproductive systems.
    The Mountain Road leads to the Bloody gate.The gate is described as two watchtowers joined by a covered bridge over the road.
    To me this is describing the female reproductive system, the two towers connected over the road symbolizing the ovaries.
    Beyond that is the Vale itself, which is some of the most fertile land in Westeros. This symbolizes the womb.
    At the Gates of the Moon there is a moat. This is where it switches to the male part of the theory.
    Over the moat, the Gates of the Moon is described as a ‘stout castle that stood at the foot of the Giants Lance’. I think GRRM is having a bit of fun here and is describing a fat butt.
    Further on at the base of the mountain the first waycastle is called Stone (can you see where im going here?) The path to stone is covered by forest. Stone is surrounded by a stone wall topped with iron spikes and has two fat round towers. I think Stone should be called ‘Stones’.
    The mountain itself is called the Giants Lance which i dont think needs explaining. At the top of the Giants Lance is the start of a waterfall called Alyssa’s Tears. It’s named for Alyssa Arryn who saw her whole family murdered in front of her and never shed a tear. After her own death, the gods cursed her that she would not know rest until her tears reached the Vale of Arryn, where all those she had loved were buried.
    Alyssa’s Tears, comes down from such a height, that the water turns into mist before it ever reaches the Vale.
    I believe Alyssa’s curse is the reason that House Arryn is plagued by stillbirths miscarriages,infant deaths and mothers dying in the birthing bed. The waters of the Giants Lance(male) never fertilizes the Vale(female) below. There isnt a lot of info on house Arryn but the other Arryns that lived away from the Eyrie seemed to have no problems conceiving children and had quite big families.
    The fact that she never cried at the deaths of her family members leads me to believe she had something to do with the murders and may be a regarded as a kinslayer in the eyes of the gods.
    There is a line in Alayne I AFFC….”I won’t have him here. You send him back down. I never said that he could come. Not here.The Eyrie is imPREGnable, Mother said.”
    in the paperback i have,the ‘preg ‘part of the word is italicized for some reason. It’s the same in Alayne II….”No one can hurt me so long as I stay here. The Eyrie is imPREGnable.”
    I cant find it printed this way in any other chapter.

    Liked by 1 person

  4. Greetings from big D,
    I thoroughly enjoy your green seer series. I read somewhere that George RR Martin named the weirwood trees as a nod to Bob Weir of the Grateful Dead. Just a comment not altogether relevant and a thank you.




  5. Hey Lucifer its Unchained or as I accidentally revealed Ross. My essay series I have been working on for like 6 damn months is almost ready. I finally broke off a piece for a first essay. It is the story within the story, the beginning. Take a look if you are interested. I am playing with some of your mythical astronomy toys I would like to hear t.hat I am doing it right (and that it is kinda understandable, I have a reputation for not being understandable at times kinda PKJane-like but less kinky). I am not targeting as big an audience as you but everyone wants a few readers.

    I listened your live stream today while I was working, but I had sound issues. I missed most of the first hour. If you spoke about the blue blooded Others I missed it. My essay is mostly about the Morningstar vs the sun. It is the two stage fight I spoke of on the forums. Round one is similar to Loki or Lucifer challenging God or insulting the gods before being sent to the underworld. Round 2 which I mention but save for another day is when Loki and Lucifer come back at Armageddon or Ragnarok. Those are the two Hammer of the Waters events. One is the Morningstar being sent to the Underworld. The other is his return during the end of the world. I found that during the 2nd round that the sun is usually a Kingsguard/Other. That is how I thought the Others were kings. They are the sun king’s remains fighting the black bastards that beat them in round one/two. Anyway, please check out my writing and let me know on Twitter what you think. I think I am on to something, but I am in your area of expertise.

    I look forward to you looking at the ToJ. I think I can kick that scenes ass and I will try in a future essay. Basically Rhaegar dying at the Trident and Viserys dying at the party are Lucifer challenging God and losing being sent to the underworld. The ToJ and the tent fight are based on the bible story I sent you about the woman standing on the moon with the sun behind her that gives birth before Lucifer-as-a-dragon tries to steal said baby. Ned and Jorah are Rhaegar and Viserys after death trying to take the baby and winning. This makes since with what you said about the Daynes and Hightowers being dragon slayers. At the ToJ they play the part of the dragon slaying angels from the bible.

    Liked by 1 person

  6. Hey LmL, first of all thank you for recording all those podcasts in addition to your written essays, they are a real treat! I haven’t all of them yet, but so far I especially enjoyed the “Sacred Order of the Green Zombies” series. Keep up the good work!
    And I wanted to add a small remark (just in case it has not been mentioned by dozens of other people before): you once mentioned the theory that Ghost, having Jon’s soul inside him, might be sacrificed/burned, liberating the “Jon(+Ghost) soul” in the process. If I remember correctly, Ghost is described as being mute so far. Wouldn’t such a sacrifice be a great opportunity for a “cry of anguish and ecstasy”? (“The only sound poor Ghost ever made..” It makes me sad to even think of it.)

    Liked by 2 people

  7. Hey LmL, I was sorry to see you leave the forums, but I understand. It has been dying a slow death for a while.

    I live in the path of totality of today’s eclipse, and I wanted to say it was about 500% more enjoyable due to your blog. The moment right before and right after totality is known as the “diamond ring” due to it looking like a bright gem on the ring which is the sun’s corona. When someone told me that today as I was looking at it, the idea of an eclipse being a marriage of the sun and moon immediately popped into my head. When totality began, I took off my glasses and noticed that Venus had become visible. I would assume that would always happen in eclipses that occur in the middle of the day when the sun is high in the sky. There is your Morningstar creeping on the sun/moon sex like Bran spying on Jaime and Cersei as well as Tyrion coming up on Tywin and Shae. The full eclipse looked like so many familiar symbols. I could see it as white swords pointing outward from sun/moon like the Kingsguard sigil. I could see a lion’s head with a black face and white mane. They really are natural ways to rationalize what we all were looking at. Eclipses are all black and white, and I wondered later if the fair skinned white haired Valyrians wearing black armor are meant to look like one. I am thinking they are. The group I was with made a lot of jokes about the end of the world including one involving a comet. Unless that person follows this site, it just proves that the end of the world and comets are the sort of thing that people’s minds go to when they see something like that.

    I may take you up on that offer to send you something I write for you to read over, but not anytime too soon. I have something that is 20,000 words so far, so it will have to be a series. I am thinking I can rationalize how someone can be both the sun’s sword and a sneaky wife stealer. I believe Ramsay and Euron are showing us a type of magic user that we do not have a real version of in the books, unless Euron is becoming one. Euron is configured like a one-eyed see, but he is not much of a corpse in a tree. He takes advantage of Grey King figures. I think that the person that would correspond to the sun in your moon explosion series of events had a corpse in a tree for a brother he abused to gain his sight who could be thought of metaphorically as a sword. By the way, did you notice on the HBO show what Euron does to the sandsnakes he kills? He impales one on her own spear and hangs the other with her own whip on the prow of a ship just like where he puts Aeron to control the wind. That appears to be a direct reference to Odin unless it is a coincidence. This sun king person was attempting some sort of sexual, magic ritual involving his wife and was using his brother’s power in some way as well. During it his brother betrays him and steals the product/child/Lightbringer following a battle in the wiernet in which he overpowers his brother’s mind inside the host. I’m not trying to start a discussion or anything, I just wanted to throw my idea out there. It will still be a while before I can get it into a form that is understandable and well supported.

    Liked by 1 person

    • Hey ‘Ross,’ better known as the great Unchained! It is super awesome to hear from you. You are on the very short list of reasons I was lingering on the forums as long as I did. I would have gotten around to messaging you had you not found me here, so I am glad you did.
      I’m also glad to hear you caught the totality! I unfortunately could not, but I saw a 80% over or so, and it was pretty awesome even still. I’m glad mythical astronomy has deepened your sense of awe for this kind of thing; I know it has mine. I look for Venus all the time now, and by thinking this way, we are able to get a little closer to the headspace of ancient man. Like you were saying, you can really feel it with something like an eclipse. Imagine if you did not have science to tell you what the f— was going on! No wonder this kind of thing would spawn crazy mythology.
      That sucker sure looks like a fiery eye or a fiery pair of horns, huh? And yes, Ravenous Reader would be glad to hear you mentioning the white lion.
      That’s a cool catch about the San Snakes, I didn’t notice it. Could be coincidence, it’s hard to say.
      Did you watch my cave painting videocast with Aziz from History of Westeros? I think you would really like that:
      As for your idea, there is often a brother brother thing, as you know. But sometimes one of those brothers seems to act like Nissa Nissa, so I have just been thinking that sometimes the sun-kill-moon thing is depicted as male-female, and sometimes as male-male. I will just have to keep your idea in mind and see if something occurs to me. Euron’s potential tree symbolism would come from his kraken symbolism, because if you recall, someone put together that the kraken tentacles are just inverted tree roots, or like grasping branches. Also, in the Forsaken chapter, there are burning trees in the background. But you could be right that he’s not the tree figure, absolutely. Send me whatever whenever, I’m always here for you my friend. Cheers, don’t be a stranger.


  8. I watched your excellent appearance on History of Westeros and I have since then completely devoured your essays and podcast. You are a treasure.

    After this season began, I decided to re-read a Dance with Dragons and also examine Jon Snow’s relationship with dragons and I found something that really surprised me and that I have not seen discussed much in the fandom. And I am VERY curious about your opinion because it relates to both symbols and astronomy — maybe you have an essay on it that I haven’t found.

    In the books, there are about 10 separate references to an “ice dragon.” Most of these are found in Bran and Jon’s POV chapters and they are references to the constellation which both Bran and Jon use to navigate beyond the wall (Davos references it as well). The ice dragon or its rider is said to have a bright blue eye, which aside from being creepy and reminiscent of white walkers, seems to be reference to a north star of sorts. But then in ADWD Jon (and ONLY Jon) recalls not the just constellation, but twice calls the wind “cold as the breathe of the ice dragon in the tales Old Nan” used to tell and also calls the road beneath the wall “dark and cold as the belly of an ice dragon.” Previously, Jon also described walked beneath the wall as “like walking down the gullet of an ice dragon.” With all this combined, I think Jon actually considers ice dragons more than standard fire type ones. Do you think this is simply a hint that Jon represents the “ice comet” aspect of Lightbringer? Is there more to it? I am really struck by how vivid and sensory Jon’s thoughts of ice dragon are — he imagines that it breathes on him and uh swallows him. I have to imagine that you are just the best possible person to ask : )

    Liked by 1 person

    • Glad you’re liking the podcast! There is just so much beneath the surface of ASOIAF, I try to do my best to dredge it up.

      Ice dragons, yes. I do look at Jon as the ice dragon in the sense of him being a frozen Targaryen, a cold dragon. I’ve also noticed that it’s Jon who seems tied to it (as well as the Wall itself). Now will a real ice dragon appear? I tend to think yes, simply because it’s this totally awesome fantasy thing George came up with and I don’t see how he doesn’t use it. So I for one am hoping to see one.

      I am starting a new series next month called Moons of Ice and Fire and we will be getting more into all things ice, and we’ll talk about ice dragons and Jon and the Wall in more detail.

      Glad to have you as a listener!

      Liked by 1 person

      • I’m really looking forward to this. I think you’ve been holding back on Aegon/Visenya/Rhaenys (and specifically Meraxes being shot down) content! 🙂 I suspect it will have to come up here (?).

        Liked by 1 person

        • Ooh you are too clever, you’ve seen right through me. I kid, but you are absolutely correct. The Aegon/ Visenya / Rhaenys triangle is one of the best evidences for the sun with 2 moons idea. Everything about their lives fits into this, so yeah, I’ve been avoiding them. But you will dig it when we get there I am sure. 🙂


  9. Hey LmL, I think all of this work you’ve compiled is amazing. GRRM hates dealing in character absolutes and I find he uses mythology to give us those clear “heroes and villains” and then we see aspects of those characters and stories in our more complex real characters to give them that flavor without making them black and white.

    Wanted to call out the most recent TV show episode and the cave drawings. Primarily the use of the spiral, and “theta” and how they represent sun and moon. Picture here:

    Curious about your thoughts on all of those cave drawings as primitive astrological symbols, as it seems to confirm the show is on track with astrology and the link to magic. Something I hope Sam’s time with the maesters will shed more light on.


  10. Hey! Love your essays, they are amazing and have definitely help with the long wait for TWOW. I wanted to ask you what your thoughts were about the premiere ep of GoT for season 7. Specifically, about the scenes with Sam when he was in the library. Not sure if you noticed, but one of those scenes had Sam looking into the gated off area, where a book lay open atop of a desk/podium, and what i thought was in those open pages of the book were space related stuff; what could have been moon/comet related pics.

    Basically, i wanted to say that once i started reading your essays about the cause of the long night, i was totally pocking up what you were putting down. This scene, if i saw the book right, definitely felt like immediate validation to what you were theorizing and i got super pumped (cant even imagine what you must feel, if you agree). Do you thnk the maesters are hip to what is really going on with the comet? is it possible they know how the long night occurred or have been at least looking into it?

    with how dope the premiere was, along with all the speculation George might be done soon, seeing this scene after reading all your stuff got me all aboard the HYPE train.

    Liked by 1 person

    • I need yo go back and look closet, I didn’t catch what you are talking about. It’s a good question about what the maesters know; remember that in the books, the original maesters are said to have hung out with the children of the forest, who definitely know what happened.

      Although I think chances are.good that the comet will return in the books and give us more meteors, I don’t expect the show to do that. Would be too expensive I think. But who knows, maybe they will. I’ll go tale a look at the scene you are talking about.


      • Oh thats a good point about the children of the forest and maesters hanging out. Perhaps they shed some light on that comet.

        As for the show, yeah that does seem like an expensive scene. But when the long night comes again, maybe theyll at least use dialogue to bring up the destined return of the comet. Either way, check it out. to me its at least the start of validation of your theory, which is awesome.


      • They could do something along the lines of one giant meteor hitting The Wall. You know, simplified version what we’ll get from GRRM.

        Well, since Season 5 I really hope that Arm of Dorne incident happens again, with Sunspear getting obliterated.

        Liked by 1 person

    • Same here.. Actually thought the episode was kind of meh and ‘off’ but that one shot that lingered on the open book sent me on a two hour rant to my aunt about your theories:) I imagined you seeing it and having a grin a mile wide. Illuminati comet confirmed!

      Liked by 2 people

        • Yes, and it struck me how the maesters and the weirwoodnet serve similar functions.

          The people who really seem to remember the cataclysm are the R’hllorists, with that scene where bonero points at the moon and makes a fist and then makes his hand explode in fire while promising doom and darkness… that sounds like a history lesson right there.

          Liked by 1 person

  11. So, when I first started listening to your podcast a couple months ago I was dubious about all the connections and threads you had teased out of the text to frame your ideas. Now though, after having read the books again more closely and re-listened to the episodes, I find myself more and more in awe of GRRM’s work. I agree, he does seem to be flat out mythmaking.

    I love your podcast, if you can’t tell and look forward to every new episode. Thanks for all your hard work.

    Liked by 2 people

    • Thanks for saying so Laura, it means a lot! As I always say, it’s okay if I don’t get everything right, the more important thing is just to get people looking at and talking about the symbolism and folklore in A Song of Ice and Fire. But yeah, I think those Moon meteors are a thing!

      Liked by 1 person

  12. Hello,I read your new stuff named “lucifermeanslightbringer | The Mythical Astronomy of Ice and Fire” on a regular basis.Your writing style is witty, keep up the good work! And you can look our website about proxy list.


  13. Lastly, I figured I should actually ask questions regarding Asoiaf:

    What happened to the Bloodstone Emperor? I can find no mention of what lead to his end, which makes me question if his life ever ended, given his possible status as AA & his diverse background into the darker magics.

    Have you found any mention of hints at immortality anywhere? Even a reference within the texts regarding the practices in Asshai?

    Yeen has been accepted by some to just be an easter egg from Martin, where not everything can be explained. I disagree with this and feel a structure of that magnitude, of that level of emanating evil & with that much black oily stone is not worth passing by. How do you feel Yeen has a part to play in all of this?


  14. Also wanted to add for quick reference a good summary of the truth behind the Full Metal Alchemist Fable. Episode 35 – The Shape of our Country. (Probably my favorite episode.) There the Hero ‘connects the dots’ of historical events to draw out the horrific truth of the matter; their country was initially created for the sole purpose of human sacrifice.

    Liked by 1 person

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