The Citadel: Concordance

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2.3. Customs
  • Every noble house has a motto (I: 19)
  • Eleven is seen as old enough for a girl to be betrothed, but marriage tends to wait a few years (I: 39)
  • Fools in motley entertain nobility. Many are misshapen, dwarfs or the mentally deficient (I: 47, etc.)
  • If a nobleman dies before he can go through with contracted marriage, custom decrees that a sibling or heir should take on the obligation (I: 50)
  • Boys might be as young as seven or eight when they are sent out to be fostered by some other noble house. It is a common practice (I: 54. SSM: 1)
  • Noble girls are taught womanly arts, such as knitting, singing, dancing, and playing instruments (I: 57, 59)
  • Noble boys begin weapons practice as early as the age of seven (I: 60)
  • It is customary for lords to cover the cost if the king and his entourage choose to stay for a time at his seat (I: 107)
  • Fifteen is considered almost a man grown (sixteen is age of majority) (I: 150. SSM: 1)
  • A lord with a bared sword across his knees is making a traditional sign that he is denying guest right (I: 204. SSM: 1)
  • Boys are apprenticed to various trades, including singing (I: 219, 226, etc.)
  • The baseborn have few rights under the law and custom, when it comes to claims (I: 267)
  • Commoners might be addressed as goodwoman or goodman (I: 389)
  • Clothes for mourning are always black (I: 455)
  • Burial or entombment are customary in the Seven Kingdoms, although some houses send their dead into the sea. The Targaryens always cremated their dead (THK: 529)
  • Fratricide is seen as an evil thing (II: 14)
  • Sitting at the right hand of a lord is seen as a high place of honor (II: 19)
  • When someone of the Faith is buried, a crystal is left on their grave (II: 61)
  • Feasts are held to celebrate the harvest (II: 179)
  • Nobles and knights can often be ransomed, so it's common to take them prisoner rather than to slay them in battle (II: 216)
  • At a large feast presided over by a lord, he would receive the first choice of all dishes. If the dish is especially choice, he might send some of it down to some of his guests as token of friendship and respect (II: 238, 239)
  • A champion (whether in war or in tournament) might salute his liege with an upraised weapon (II: 251)
  • A noble bridegroom wears a mantle of expensive fur and cloth, such as miniver and velvet, even for some days after the marriage to make it known (II: 295)
  • A girl is not considered a woman until her first menstruation, or flowering as the folk of the Seven Kingdom say. More precisely, she is a maiden who is both still a child and a woman at the same time (II: 360. SSM: 1)
  • Noble prisoner tend to be treated with honor, unless they make serious offense (such as breaking an oath to not attempt escape) (II: 338, 415, 577)
  • Marriage contracts can be broken (II: 388)
  • In accepting the oath of a liegeman, one way to respond is: "I vow to you that you shall always have a place by my hearth and meat and mead at my table, and pledge to ask no service of you that might bring you into dishonor. I swear it by the old gods and the new" (II: 411)
  • A challenge to a duel can be issued by throwing a glove or gauntlet down (II: 445)
  • A soldier's tent would be of heavy canvas (II: 449)
  • Men (besides maesters and perhaps husbands) are not supposed to be present in birthing rooms (II: 555)
  • Menstrual blood is referred to as moonblood (II: 620)
  • A peace banner can be shown to signal a wish to parley (II: 672)
  • Coz is used as a diminutive for cousin (III: 18)
  • Smallfolk often name their daughters after flowers and herbs (III: 29)
  • The guest right protects a guest who has eaten his host's food from harm, at least for the length of the stay. It is a sacred rule as old as the First Men (III: 83)
  • Houses can show unspecified marks of mourning after the deaths of family members (III: 116)
  • Tipping the cap in deference to women (III: 117)
  • For a great wedding, all manner of entertainments may be made available: a singers' tourney, a fools' joust, tumblers, dancing bears, and more (III: 139)
  • Being set at a table below the salt is a place for the lowborn and the little regarded (III: 139, 432)
  • A toast: "Seven save the king!" (III: 150)
  • Young ladies of high status often share their beds with one or two of their lady attendants (III: 182; IV: 173)
  • Noblewomen wear a maiden's cloak when they're to be wed, bearing their family's colors and sometimes their arms (III: 317)
  • A father, a man who stands there in his place, removes the noble maiden's cloak from about her shoulders so that her husband may place a cloak of his colors there in its place to signify her passing into his protection (III: 319)
  • Marriage feasts have many toasts and dancing. The bedding is seen to afterwards, where the men will carry the bride up to the wedding bed, undressing her along the way and making rude jokes about her fate, while the women do the same for the groom. Though they'll leave them alone in the bedchamber after bundling them both naked into bed, they'll stand outside the door shouting ribald suggestions (III: 320)
  • Kin by marriage are referred to as "good [relation]", such as good uncle (III: 408, 423)
  • Dowries are paid by a bride's family to the groom (III: 422)
  • Dornish custom gives a special status to mistresses, or paramours as they name them, that places them above mistresses in the rest of the Seven Kingdoms but beneath wives (III: 431. SFC2)
  • Boys who share a wetnurse, even at a few years remove,could be considered to be milk brothers. More usually, it is used for boys who were nursed by the same woman at the same time (III: 494. SSM: 1)
  • The peace banner of the Seven is a rainbow-striped flag with seven long tails, a seven-pointed star topping the stave is hangs from (III: 503)
  • The most proper way of receiving the guest right is to eat bread and salt (III: 556, 562)
  • Entertainment at weddings among the nobility can feature singers, musicians, jugglers, tumblers, or troupes of comic dwarfs (III: 574, 678. TMK: 664)
  • It seems only maids and mothers take part in the bedding ceremony, stripping the groom as they lead him to his wedding chamber (III: 579)
  • A bridgegroom being bedded can throw back jests and attempt to unclothe the women trying to strip him (III: 772)
  • A passing reference to chastity belts, suggesting that they exist (TSS: 121)
  • In Dorne, brothels are called pillow houses (IV: 31)
  • A grand funeral for a Hand of the King might include morning services for the deceased with nobles in attendance, afternoon prayers for the commons, and evening prayers open to all (IV: 100)
  • A dead Hand might be shown in full armor on the stepped marble bier of the Great Sept, with knights standing vigil (IV: 101-102)
  • It's bad luck for a man to sleep apart from his bride on their wedding night (IV: 174)
  • In Dorne, it's claimed that women would duel, bare-breasted and knife to knife, over a man (IV: 190)
  • It is not uncommon for a noble maiden, betrothed early, to wed within the year following her first flowering (IV: 203)
  • Sailors believe that having a woman aboard a ship can bring bad luck (IV: 223)
  • The funeral procession of a great lord might include an escort of fifty knights, a number of vassal lords, a hundred crossbowmen, three hundred men-at-arms, and drummers to beat the funeral march. Six silent sisters would ride attendance on the wagon containing his bones (IV: 226-227)
  • In embalming a body, the bowels, internal organs, and blood are removed and replaced with salt and fragrant herbs. The silent sisters often carry out such tasks (IV: 241)
  • Some nobility employee whipping boys, common children who are beaten whenever their offspring deserve punishment (IV: 344)
  • Some believe black cats bring bad luck (IV: 360)
  • After some weddings, the bedsheets of the newlywed couple are displayed to show the blood from the breaking of the bride's maidenhead (IV: 411)
  • It's said common girls are likelier to bleed heavily from the loss of the maidenhead, but that noble girls are less so because riding horses tends to gradually tear the maidenhead (IV: 411)
  • Torn clothing as a mark of mourning (IV: 663)
  • Refusing to drink and emptying the cup one holds during a toast is a show of disrespect towards the person toasted (TMK: 674)
  • While marriages to women who have not reached their majority or even their first flowering have happened, they are rare. Moreover, bedding these girls before they are at the least flowered is seen as perverse. Generally, weddings are postponed until the girl has passed into maidenhood with he flowering, although betrothals may happen earlier (SSM: 1)
  • Most women outside of Dorne take the names of their husbands, although not in all cases. If a woman is of higher birth or station than her husband, for example, she may use his name little if at all (SSM: 1)
  • There is a stigma attached to homosexuality everywhere in the Seven Kingdoms, save in Dorne (SFC)
2.3.1. Laws
  • The punishment for poaching is losing a hand (I: 3)
  • Taking the black is an alternative to criminal punishment (I: 3)
  • The punishment for oathbreaking is death (I: 12)
  • Wildlings are executed if caught south of the Wall (I: 12)
  • Slavery is illegal in the Seven Kingdoms. The punishment for enslaving a person is execution (I: 30)
  • Younger sons of the Great Houses would be bannermen to their elder brother, and hold small keeps in his name (I: 45)
  • The punishment for rape is castration, but taking the black is an alternative (I: 100)
  • The baseborn have few rights under the law, when it comes to claims (I: 267)
  • A king can put aside his queen and marry another (I: 289)
  • The highborn cannot be denied trials under the law (I: 351)
  • Trial by combat is allowed, and those who stand accused and make the accusations can have champions (I: 352)
  • The king or his Hand might hear disputes between rival holdfasts, petitions, and the adjudicating of the placement of boundary stones (I: 390)
  • Dornish law, in part based on the laws and customs of the Rhoynar, allow lands and titles to be passed to the eldest child, regardless of gender (I: 690. SSM: 1)
  • By law, only a trueborn son may inherit a knight's arms (THK: 487)
  • If a crime takes place far from King's Landing, and it is sufficiently important (such as the striking of one of royal blood), the judges shall be the heirs to the throne if available, the lord of the great house holding dominion in that area if available, and the lord on whose actual domains the crime happened (THK: 507)
  • For striking a Targaryen, no matter the circumstances, a man of lesser nobility will be tried and punished. The last time it happened, the man who did it lost his offending hand (THK: 507, 508)
  • An offended party can demand a trial of seven, another form of trial by combat (THK: 508, 509)
  • The trial of seven is seldom used, coming across with the Andals and their seven gods. The Andals believed that if seven champions fought on each side, the gods thus honored would be more likely to see justice done. If a man cannot find six others to stand with him, then he is obviously guilty (THK: 509)
  • There had not been a trial by seven in more than a hundred years in (HK) (THK: 516)
  • If the accused is killed in a trial of seven, it is believed that the gods have judged him guilty and the contest then ends. If his accusers are slain or withdraw their accusations, the contest ends and he is decreed innocent. Otherwise, all seven of one side must die or yield for the trial to end (THK: 521)
  • The Great Council is a rare event which has not been called in a hundred years, and is the gathering of the assembled lords of the kingdom to decide some matter. The last time it was convened, it choose the next king of the Seven Kingdoms, over-riding proper lines of inheritance to give the crown to the youngest son of Maekar I, Aegon V (II: 78, 366. SSM: 1)
  • Marriages can very well be completed between children, even babies or a baby to a young boy, especially if inheritances are the chief concern (II: 210)
  • A bastard may inherit if the father has no other trueborn children nor any other likely kin to follow him (II: 185)
  • If a house's succession is uncertain, a related kinsman might well be seen as the best choice to be heir. He would then take the House's name as his own, despite his father being of another house (II: 190)
  • Septons witness marriages for those who follow the Faith, and in those who follow the old gods the heart trees also serve the same use (II: 384)
  • Witnesses may be called upon to witness the bedding of a newly wedded couple. How far this witness duty goes is uncertain (II: 384)
  • Vows said at swordpoint are not valid (II: 384)
  • Marriage contracts can be broken (II: 388)
  • The punishment for theft is the loss of a hand (III: 5)
  • Being caught abed with another man's wife can lead to being sent to the Wall (III: 5)
  • Being caught smuggling by the sea watch about Dragonstone was death in the days of Aerys (III: 110)
  • The father of a child whose descent makes him heir to a noble's lands and titles can garner the title of Lord Protector (III: 222)
  • Lords have bailiffs to help them in keeping the peace, taking on such tasks as overseeing hangings (III: 247)
  • There have been no slaves in Westeros for thousands of years, for the old gods and the new alike hold slavery as an abomination (III: 264)
  • The king can dispose of a lady's hand, standing in her father's place, if her direct male kin are declared traitors (III: 317)
  • Iron cages in which criminals are placed to die from exposure and hunger are known as crow cages, due to the crows the dead bodies attract. Being left to die in a crow cage is a particularly harsh death, though lords can vary widely as to what crime merits such punishment (III: 328, 329. TSS: 79)
  • A marriage that has not been consumated can be set aside by the High Septon or a Council of Faith (III: 362)
  • Death has always been the penalty for treason (III: 407)
  • A bastard can inherit if he is legitimized by a royal decree (III: 521, 819)
  • Justice is said to belong to the throne (III: 735)
  • Trials, at least among the nobility, often begin with a prayer from a septon beseeching the Father Above to guide them towards justice (III: 740)
  • A septon will swear a man to honesty before he gives testimony at a trial (III: 741)
  • Bills of attainder can be signed by the king to strip lords of their lands and incomes (III: 818)
  • Not even the High Septon himself can declare a person married if they refuse to say the vows (III: 907)
  • Robbers, rapers, and murderers are among those criminals who might be executed (TSS: 79)
  • Lords in Westeros once had the right to the first night (the custom of bedding newlywed common women before their husbands), but Queen Alysanne convinced King Jaehaerys I to abolish it (TSS: 94)
  • Some lords ban smallfolk from keeping bows as an attempt to keep them from poaching (TSS: 95)
  • In ancient days, wrongful deaths could be addressed by the paying of a blood price, and in the Age of Heroes a man's life might be reckoned at being worth no more than a sack of silver (TSS: 104, 126)
  • A lord might use his will to lay out specific terms for the inheritance of his title and lands. For example, if his heir is a daughter without a husband, he might specify that she must wed by a certain time or the inheritance will pass to a cousin (TSS: 123)
  • Lords have the right of pit and gallow over their own lands, according to the king's law, while landed knights cannot exercise the same right without the leave of their liege lord (TSS: 127. SSM: 1)
  • Slitting a man's nostrils may be deemed a suitable punishment for injuring an innocent maliciously (TSS: 127)
  • A lord may choose to leave substantial wealth and incomes on younger children (IV: 114)
  • It is customary to punish thieves to the loss of a finger for their crime (IV: 206)
  • A man who steals from a sept might be judged to have stolen from the gods, and so receive a harsher punishment (IV: 206)
  • A prostitute accused of carrying a pox might be punished by having her private parts washed out with lye before being thrown into a dungeon (IV: 207)
  • If one person stabs another in the hand as part of a dispute, they may be punished by having a nail driven through their palm (IV: 207)
  • In some cases, poachers and thieves might be forced to row ships as a punishment for their crimes (IV: 249)
  • If the queen of the Seven Kingdoms were to commit adultery, it would be considered high treason (IV: 577)
  • Of old, the High Septons might appoint seven judges to try a case, and if a woman was accussed, three of them might be women, representing maidens, mothers, and crones (IV: 645, 651)
  • Only a knight of the Kingsguard can champion a queen in a trial by battle if she has been accused of treason (IV: 647)
  • The age of legal majority for men and women is 16 (SSM: 1)
  • The laws of inheritance in Westeros are vague. Outside of Dorne, a man's eldest son is his heir, followed by the next youngest son, and so on. After the sons, most would say that the eldest daughter would inherit but there might be argument from the dead man's brother or a nephew. There are many other questions with murky answers, in particular having to do with the rights of legitimized bastards (SSM: 1)
  • Noble holdings are seldom divided, nor are they generally combined, although one person could concievably hold more than one title. If a lord intended to pass his lands in some unusual fashion, however, that would carry some weight (and likely lead to disputes) (SSM: 1)
  • Lords are not bound by custom or law to support relatives. Some do, however, by giving them posts and positions, or by granting them vassal holdfasts (SSM: 1)
  • The difference between a landed knight and a small lord is the title. A lord has greater powers over his domain than a landed knight, and the title is seen as more prestigious than knighthood. On the other hand, a knight is a fighting man and the title has its own martial and religious meanings with its own special prestige. It is concievable that a landed knight would have more lands and wealth than a small lord (SSM: 1)
  • A lord is expected to arrange matches for his children and his younger, unwed siblings, but he cannot force the marriages if they refuse to say the vows. However, there would be serious consequences to this. Moreover, he does not necessarily arrange marriages for his vassals and household knights, but they would be wise to consult him and respect his feelings when arranging their own matches (SSM: 1)
  • No one needs to be present for the High Septon to annul the marriage, but at least one of the wedded pair must request the annulment (SSM: 1)
2.3.2. Bastards
  • Snow is the surname for bastards north of the Neck (I: 12)
  • Bastards are said to grow up more swiftly than other children (I: 45)
  • It is not unexpected for noblemen to have bastard children (I: 54)
  • It is not typical for a noble to bring his bastards home and raise them with his own children. It's more usually expected that he will see to the child's well-being to some degree (I: 55)
  • The baseborn have few rights under the law and custom, when it comes to claims (I: 267)
  • Stone is the bastard name in the Vale (I: 309)
  • Flowers is the bastard name in the Reach (I: 309)
  • Each of the Seven Kingdoms have bastard surnames decreed by custom, although only noble bastards receive them (I: 309. SSM: 1)
  • Rivers is the bastard name in the riverlands (I: 541)
  • Pyke is the bastard name on the Iron Islands (I: 654. III: 364, 550)
  • Storm is the bastard name in the stormlands (II: 119)
  • A bastard may inherit if the father has no other trueborn children nor any other likely kin to follow him (II: 185)
  • Hill is the bastard name for the westerlands (III: 10)
  • Blackfyre was a name carried by a bastard of Aegon IV and his sons, but does not seem to have been a bastard name commonly used for Targaryen for Targaryen bastards, as his half-brother, whose mother was a Blackwood, used Rivers (III: 407, 521. TSS: 121-122)
  • Sand is the bastard name of Dorne (III: 431)
  • A bastard can inherit if he is legitimized by a royal decree (III: 521, 819. SSM: 1)
  • Aegon IV legitimized all his bastards, both the Great Bastards gotten on noble mothers and the baseborn, on his deathbed, and the pain, grief, war, and murder that wrought lasted five generations because of the Blackfyre pretenders (III: 521. TSS: 132)
  • It is rude to pry into the origins of a man's natural children (III: 766)
  • Men say that bastards are born from lust and lies, and so their nature is wanton and treacherous (III: 830)
  • Waters is the bastard name of Dragonstone and the King's Landing region (III: 929. IV: 120. SSM: 1)
  • Many noble bastards take the arms of their fathers with the colors reversed (TSS: 109. IV: 569)
  • Bastards whose parents are both of the nobility are not considered baseborn (TSS: 132)
  • The trueborn children of a bastard might change their surnames to show their legitimate nature. For example, a legitimate son of a Waters might change their surname to Longwaters (IV: 120-121. SSM: 1)
  • If two bastards from different regions married (such as a Snow and a Rivers), their offspring would probably take the name of their father (SSM: 1)
  • Any man can be knighted, even a bastard (SSM: 1)
  • Targaryen bastards have had various last names (SSM: 1)
2.3.3. Pastimes
  • Noble girls are taught womanly arts, such as knitting, singing, dancing, and playing instruments (I: 57, 59)
  • Dicing is one way to pass the time (I: 155)
  • Children play games like monsters-and-maidens, hide-the-treasure, come-into-my-castle, hopfrog, and spin-the-sword (I: 183. III: 776)
  • Children play with toys such as wooden knights, joints pegged together and strings set through so that they can be made to move (I: 254)
  • A game involving tiles and bets is played (I: 317. II: 98)
  • Children chase after hoops (I: 602)
  • Children often play rough-and-tumble games. One example is lord of the crossing, where a child plays at being the lord. Holding a stick he guards the crossing over a pool of water (necessary to the game) and others challenge him. The only way to win is to slip "mayhaps" amidst the play oaths that the lord makes them swear and then to push him into the water. Only the lord carries a stick (II: 56-57)
  • Lord of the crossing usually comes down to shoving, hitting, and falling into the water, with many arguments over whether "mayhaps" has been said or not (II: 57)
  • Nobles enjoy hawking (II: 120)
  • Women can go hawking (II: 216)
  • Drinking games (II: 239)
  • Peak-and-sneak is probably a game played by children (II: 330)
  • Travelling follies of mummers from the Free Cities travel among them on ships, and some visit the shores of Westeros plying their trade. These follies take on apprentices (II: 473)
  • Bear baiting (II: 534)
  • A mummer's dragon is a cloth dragon on poles, used to give heroes something to fight (II: 641)
  • Setting dogs to fighting (III: 137)
  • Young pages and squires can practice their skills by riding at rings (III: 493)
  • Children play games in pools and fountains, such as climbing on one another's shoulders and trying to push their opponents into the water (IV: 33)
  • The game of cyvasse, recently introduced to Westeros by a Volantene ship trading at the Planky Town in Dorne. The game involves two players, and features ten pieces with different powers and attributes. The board changes from game to game, depending on how the players array their home squares. (IV: 186-187)
  • Cockfights and boar baiting (IV: 495)
  • Children play with wooden blocks (IV: 660)
  • Jugglers and tumblers at a wedding feast (TMK: 678)
  • A troupe of painted dwarfs with inflated pig bladders that make rude noises (TMK: 679)