The Citadel: Concordance

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2.5. The Maesters and the Citadel
  • The sleeves of a maester's robes are sewn with myriad pockets (I: 51. II: 16)
  • The maesters wear simple collars of forged links, of many metals (I: 51)
  • The Grand Maester of the Seven Kingdoms has a place on the council (I: 162, 676)
  • The Grand Maester wears a dozen heavy chains wound together in a heavy necklace that covers from throat to breast, the links forged of every metal known to man such as platinum, copper, brass, bronze, lead, steel, tin, silver, black iron, red gold, electrum, and yellow gold. Gems adorn the work (I: 162. IV: 716)
  • The Grand Maester Aethelmure wrote that all men carry murder in their hearts (I: 213)
  • Maesters appear to customarily ride mules or donkeys (I: 333. TSS: 145. IV: 38)
  • Maesters never remove their chains (I: 375)
  • The many metals of the links of a maester's collar represent different sorts of learning. Gold is for the study of money and accounts, silver for healing, iron for warcraft. (I: 376. IV: 2, 8)
  • The order of maesters are sometimes called the knights of the mind (I: 484)
  • Maesters know many things, among them history, healing, herblore, the speech of ravens, the building of castles, navigating by the stars, the measurement of days and the marking of seasons. At the Citadel in Oldtown, a thousand other things might be taught, but not magic (I: 485)
  • House names are put aside when maesters take their vows and don their collars (I: 554)
  • Maesters of the Seven Kingdoms have performed autopsies for centuries to better understand the workings of the human body (I: 561. IV: 82, 110)
  • The maesters make star maps (I: 615)
  • As the maesters have noticed, most highborn girls flower earlier than girls of the smallfolk, at the age of twelve or thirteen (I: 625. SSM: 1)
  • The maesters breed white ravens, sending them to herald the changing of seasons (II: 2, 4)
  • A maester might be as young as twenty-five, if not younger (II: 3)
  • The maesters say that comets are stars with tails, lost in the heavens (II: 3)
  • The maesters at the Citadel meet in a gathering called a Conclave. There the reports and measurements of all the maesters are considered to decide whether a season has ended (II: 4, 85)
  • When a maester dons his collar he places himself under vows of celibacy (II: 14)
  • A student at the Citadel does not take final binding vows until he has completed his training (II: 76)
  • A student at the Citadel begins to forge his chain even before he has become a maester. However, "forge" is a metaphor; maesters do not actually make the links themselves (II: 77. SSM: 1)
  • Maesters are only found in castles, not towns, and the opinion of many is that they will not dirty their hands helping smallfolk as their service is only to the highborn. This does not hold for all maesters, however (II: 217)
  • Once the Alchemists' Guild was powerful, but in recent centuries the maesters of the Citadel had supplanted them through most of the Seven Kingdoms. Now only a very few alchemists remain (II: 226)
  • Maesters are supposed to be celibate (II: 300)
  • A link of black iron in a maester's collar is for ravenry, and a link of dark grey Valyrian steel represents the study of magic, which they call "the higher mysteries" in the Citadel (II: 324. IV: 3)
  • Only one maester in a hundred wears a link of Valyrian steel (II: 324)
  • All those who study the higher mysteries try their own hands at sorcery eventually, but they always fail (II: 324)
  • The maesters concede that magic may once have been a mighty force in the world, but if any still remains it's but a lingering wisp of smoke from dying embers (II: 324-325)
  • The maesters say that Valyria was the last ember of magic, and even that is now destroyed (II: 325)
  • The maesters believe that the dragons are no more, the giants are all dead, that the children are as forgotten as their lore, and that no living man has the greensight (II: 325)
  • Men (besides maesters and perhaps husbands) are not supposed to be present in birthing rooms (II: 555)
  • A maester can be thrown out of his order, apparently, for such crimes as practicing "necromancy" (II: 653)
  • The order of the maesters serves the realm and the appointed keep of each member, no matter whether who controls it is rightful lord or not (II: 670)
  • Maesters buy leeches at twelve for a penny (III: 5)
  • The archmaesters of Oldtown (III: 133)
  • Some archmaesters argue that only the Conclave may make or unmake a Grand Maester (III: 133)
  • Maegor the Cruel had three of his Grand Maesters executed (III: 133)
  • Aegon II had Grand Maester Gerardys fed to his dragon (III: 133)
  • The Conclave makes a pretense of putting ability before birth, but this is not usually the case in its final choice for Grand Maester (III: 133)
  • The Conclave met in Oldtown behind closed doors, its deliberations secret (III: 133)
  • There is an old rhyme known to the maesters in Westeros and perhaps elsewhere that goes, "Bricks and blood built Astapor, and bricks and blood her people" (III: 267)
  • Maesters teach the stars to their pupils, giving them the names of the twelve houses of heaven and the rulers of each, the seven wanderers sacred to the Faith, and many constellations (III: 295)
  • The Sow, the Ghost, the Ice Dragon, the Shadowcat, the Moonmaid, the Sword of the Morning, the King's Crown, the Stallion, the Swan, the Galley, and the Crone's Lamp (also known as the Crone's Lantern) are constellations (III: 295, 343, 710. TSS: 133)
  • The Sword of the Morning is still visible and hangs in the south even as the eastern sky lightens with the dawn. A bright white star is in its hilt, blazing like a diamond (III: 336)
  • The King's Crown moves through the zenith (III: 343)
  • The Moonmaid is shy and hangs low in the sky (III: 343)
  • The smallfolk believe dragonglass is truly made by dragons, but the maesters think not, saying instead that it comes from the fires of the earth (III: 373)
  • Sometimes the maesters' ravens do not win through because some bowman might have decided to shoot one down for a meal (III: 395)
  • Grand Maester Hareth died for his treason (III: 407)
  • There are maesters interested in more occult matters, but the archmaesters do not much care for their ideas (III: 508)
  • The Ice Dragon's tail points the way south (III: 530)
  • The Stallion gallops up the sky as sun sets (III: 616)
  • Grand Maester Kaeth wrote Lives of Four Kings, a history of the reigns of Daeron the Young Dragon, Baelor the Blessed, Aegon the Unworthy, and Daeron the Good. There are only four copies existing illuminated by his own hand, one of them in the Citadel. Kaeth scants Viserys II terribly, however, as his short reign as king came after Baelor's (III: 662, 664)
  • The Galley, a constellation, moves westwards in the night (III: 710)
  • The Crone's Lamp is a constellation of four bright stars enclosing a golden haze (III: 710)
  • The Galley, the Crone's Lamp, and the eye of the Ice Dragon are used in navigation at sea (III: 710)
  • Maesters give counsel, not commands (III: 724)
  • In 211, the Grand Maester was considered new to the office, and was alleged to be as steeped in sorcery as Lord Rivers, the Hand of the King (TSS: 122)
  • The Quill and Tankard, found on an island in the Honeywine river, is an Oldtown inn popular for all classes of patrons, including novices and acolytes (IV: 1, 4)
  • New students at the Citadel without any links are novices, while those with at least two are considered acolytes (IV: 1-2, 717)
  • Pewter is one of the links symbolizing a particular area of learning (IV: 2)
  • Most acolytes treat novices as if they were slow-witted (IV: 2)
  • Some students of the Citadel who learn something of a healing and little else may become barbers, serving smallfolk with leeches, setting broken bones, and shaving and cutting their hair (IV: 2)
  • The Citadel gives archmaesters renowned for their knowledge of a particular subject a mask, ring, and rod corresponding to that link of chain. The archmaester considered most knowledgable in ravenry, for example, retains the mask of black iron and is said to sit beneath it. (IV: 3, 9)
  • An archmaester who is grown too feeble of mind to continue his duties under a mask might be replaced by a succesor, who could be a maester rather than an archmaester (IV: 3)
  • Most acolytes take a year to earn each link, although exceptional students have been known to gain three links in that same span of time, and unexceptional students have been known to go five years or more without a single link (IV: 5)
  • When a student at the Citadel believes they are ready to earn a link, they will go before the preeminent maester in that area of knowledge and be questioned. If they meet the archmaester's approval, they gain a link. Those who do very badly may be so demoralized that it may take years before they make another attempt (IV: 5)
  • Green marbles sphinxes flank the main gate of the Citadel (IV: 6)
  • A student of the Citadel who violates the rules of behavior given to them can be ordered confined to their rooms by the maesters (IV: 7)
  • Some maesters of the Citadel claim the world is 40,000 years old, while others argue that it is 500,000 years old (IV: 7)
  • The Citadel allegedly has four glass candles from Valyria, brought to Oldtown a thousand years before the Doom. One is green, the other three are black. They are made of razor-sharp obsidian. When an acolyte is prepared to take his vows and become a maester, he is placed in a completely dark room with one of these candles. He must stay in that room for the entire night in darkness unless he is able to light the candle, as a lesson about truth and learning (IV: 9)
  • Archmaesters give open lectures on various subjects, which students can come to or not as they desire (IV: 10)
  • The Quill and Tankard is not far from the Citadel as the raven flies, but Oldtown is a veritable labyrinth (IV: 11)
  • The towers and domes of the Citadel lie on both sides of the Honeywine. Stone bridges, crowded with halls and houses, connect them (IV: 12)
  • Each archmaester is said to carry a heavy, black iron key that will open most of the doors in the Citadel. They keep them close on their person, or hide them well (IV: 13-14)
  • Maester Thomax's Dragonkin, Being a History of House Targaryen from Exile to Apotheosis, with a Consideration of the Life and Death of Dragons contains illustrations of dragons such as Balerion the Black Dread done in colored inks (IV: 76)
  • Archmaester Marwyn's Book of Lost Books, containing among other things information concerning three pages from Signs and Portents, a book of visions written down by the maiden daughter of Aenar Targaryen before the Doom (IV: 162)
  • There are archmaesters who question all the old histories that deal with the time before the Andals, because they were written down by septons thousands of years after the fact (IV: 80)
  • Haereg's History of the Ironborn discusses Urron of Orkmont's massacre at a kingsmoot to establish House Greyiron's rule in the Iron Islands until the Andals came a thousand years later (IV: 165)
  • Archmaester Rigney once wrote that history is a wheel, because the unchanging nature of men means that what happened before will happen again (IV: 165)
  • Though it's traditionally said the last kingsmoot took place four thousand years ago, Denestan's Questions suggests the true date is less than half that (IV: 165)
  • A maester might use beetles to clean flesh from bones (IV: 240)
  • It's said that the moon can "crown" the constellation known as the Moonmaid (IV: 306)
  • A young girl of a highborn family is likely to have been taught some High Valyrian (IV: 314)
  • The Braavosi count their days differently from Westeros (IV: 323)
  • Some archmaesters teach that mother's milk has many healthful properties (IV: 333)
  • A comet was seen above King's Landing on the day that Rhaegar's son Aegon was conceived (IV: 520)
  • The maesters pay good silver, and sometimes even gold, for books (IV: 521)
  • It is a great shame for any maester to surrender his chain (IV: 521)
  • Kaeth was chosen as Grand Maester at the age of 80, and Ellendor was almost 90 when he was chosen after him. Both died within the year of being raised. After them was Grand Maester Merion, 66 years of age, who died of a chill while on his way to King's Landing. After them, King Aegon suggested to the Conclave that a younger man would be better, and Pycelle was raised to Grand Master at the age of 42. (IV: 542)
  • Some maesters believed prophecy is possible, and cite certain spells in old books. However, though it may be possible, they council against it (IV: 543)
  • Maesters say that the size of a woman's breasts does not indicate how much milk she will produce when nursing (IV: 619)
  • The gates of the Citadel are flanked by a pair of towering green Valyrian sphinxes. They have the bodies of lions, the wings of eagles, and the tails of serpents. One has a man's face, the other a woman's (IV: 677)
  • Just beyond the gates of the Citadel is Scribe's Hearth, where Oldtowners look for acolytes to write wills or read letters for them. Half a dozen scribes might be found, sitting in open stalls, while at other stalls books are bought and sold (IV: 677)
  • From Scribe's Hearth, a path divides around a state of King Daeron the First astride a horse with his sword pointed towards Dorne. The left fork follows the river, passing the Weeping Dock which is a short boat trip away from the Bloody Isle. There is a septry near it. Going on, one reaches the Seneschal's Court (IV: 677)
  • A cook's boys might catch frogs under the Weeping Docks (IV: 677)
  • At the Seneschal's Court, rectors deal out punishment to novices and acolytes, such as placing them in stocks from stealing from the kitchens; acolytes may throw rotten vegetables at them (IV: 677)
  • Beyond the doors of the Seneschal's Court is a high hall with a stone floor and high, arched windows with benches beneath them. At one end is a gatekeeper, who keeps appointments for the Seneschal of the Citadel. It seems expected to bribe him with a penny to hurry up the process if one is not yet enrolled (IV: 677-678)
  • A new Seneschal is appointed each new year. The archmaesters tend to see it as a thankless task, and so the archmaester is selected by lot each year, with the one who draws the black stone taking on the office (IV: 679)
  • The Isle of Ravens is not far from the Seneschal's Court, linked by a weathered drawbridge on the east bank of the Honeywine. On it is the castle called the Ravenry, the oldest building at the Citadel. It's said that in the Age of Heroes, a pirate lord robbed ships as they came down the slow-moving river. An ancient weirwood fills it, half its branches dead but a few still have leaves. Ravens fill it, perching upon the branches (IV: 680)
  • The west tower of the Ravenry contains the white rookery, where the white ravens are kept, as they quarrel with the black ravens. There is also a northern tower (IV: 680)
  • It's claimed that the Citadel is behind the deaths of the last Targaryen dragons, because of a conspiracy against magic and prophecy (IV: 683)
  • The west tower of the Ravenry has a good view of the Honeywine (IV: 684)
  • The Hightowers were instrumental in the founding of the Citadel (IV: 715)
  • The election of the Seneschal for the coming year appears to take place shortly after the Seneschal of the waning year assumes his place (IV: 715)
  • Copper is the metal of the link for history (IV: 716)
  • Bronze is the metal of the link for stargazing or astronomy (IV: 716)
  • The Citadel has no requirements for entry, not even age requirements. The Citadel is very loosely structured and open to all, although not everyone becomes a maester. It is full of ageing novices and acolytes who never completed their maesters chain (or, in some cases, never even began) (SSM: 1)
  • The maesters have noted that very young mothers (12-14) have a significantly higher mortality rate in childbed, so lords tend not to bed their maiden wives until they have reached 15 or even 16 years out of concern for their safety (SSM: 1)
  • Dragonlore has been accumulated in the Citadel (SSM: 1)
  • The maesters and the more educated classes realize the world is round, but many common folk may believe it is flat (SSM: 1)
  • Maesters monitor temperature variations and the march of the seasons closely, so as to better advise what to plant and when to expect a harvest (SSM: 1)
  • Maesters serving on the Wall take the oaths of the Night's Watch (SSM: 1)
  • The Citadel is financed by the lords who pay for having their maesters, and from certain taxes that the Citadel collects at Oldtown (SSM: 1)
  • A maester's chain may have multiple links of a single metal, to indicate especially great accomplishment in that area of learning (SSM: 1)
2.5.1. Medicines and Poisons
  • Milk of the poppy is a powerful medicine that sets men to sleep despite great pain (I: 21, etc.)
  • Honey, water, and herbs are mixed together to feed patients in a coma (I: 77)
  • Salves for bruises or sprains (I: 152)
  • Wasting potions and pepper juice are used to purge potentially dangerous matter from the body (I: 212)
  • The tears of Lys is rare and costly, clear and sweet as water and leaving no trace. It is a cruel poison that eats at a man's bowels and belly, and seems like an illness of those parts (I: 270. IV: 516)
  • Myrish fire is dabbed on cuts and feels like it burns (I: 284)
  • Boiling wine is used to clean out wounds (I: 322. THK: 528)
  • Firemilk is a pale red ointment used to clean wounds (I: 616)
  • Dreamwine is used against pain (I: 659. II: 575)
  • Maesters are known to shave the heads of patients to treat lice, rootworm, and certain illnesses (THK: 469)
  • A poison which seems as small, extremely purple crystals made from a certain plant that grows only on the islands of the Jade Sea. The leaves are aged and soaked in a wash of limes and sugar water and certain rare spices from the Summer Isles. Afterwards the leaves could be discarded, but the potion must be thickened with ash. The process is slow and difficult, leading to its cost. The alchemists of Lys, the Faceless Men, and the maesters of the Citadel know how to make it (II: 15)
  • The leaf has a particular name amongst the Asshai'i and the Lysene have a name for the crystals. To the maesters, the poison is known as 'the strangler' for causing the throat to clench so powerfully that the windpipe shuts (II: 15)
  • Various poisons: sweetsleep (a pinch will bring sound and dreamless sleep, while three pinches brings death, nightshade, powdered greycap (taken from the toadstool), wolfsbane, demon's dance, basilisk venom, blindeye, and widow's blood (named so for its color, it's a cruel potion that shuts down bladder and bowels so the victim drowns in their own poisons) (II: 193. III: 743, 872. IV: 516)
  • There appears to be no knowledge of birth control outside of the interruption method (II: 329)
  • Leeching is known of and used medicinally. Some take the practice to an extreme with regular leeching in the belief that it helps purge 'bad blood' and lead to a longer life (II: 507)
  • Wounds that seem near to mortification are treated with boiling wine and maggots (II: 686)
  • Hot wine is said to be better than compresses for colds and fluxes (III: 112)
  • Moon tea is used to abort children. It is made of tansy, mint, wormwood, a spoon of honey, and a drop of pennyroyal (III: 171, 913)
  • A posset of herbs and milk and ale, supposedly for the purpose of increasing fertility (III: 233)
  • Tansy tea appears to be used by the smallfolk to induce abortions (III: 252)
  • Hot garlic broth and milk of the poppy are given to people with bad fevers, to warm them and take away the aches and shivers (III: 285)
  • Leeching is done to drain off bad blood from the ill (III: 285)
  • Boiling wine and a poultice of nettles can be used to try to burn out infection in severely corrupted flesh (III: 349, 350)
  • Catgut is used for stitches (III: 350)
  • There are herbs that can be mixed into wine and drunk to help bring down fever (III: 351)
  • Leeches are used to drain bad blood from inflamed wounds (III: 351)
  • Myrish fire, mustard salve, ground garlic, tansy, poppy, kingscopper, and other herbs are used in healing (III: 366)
  • Licorice steeped in vinegar, with honey and cloves, helps restore strength and clear heads (III: 421)
  • Maesters will heat their medical irons (III: 549, 551)
  • Nettle, mustard seed, and moldy bread can be used in a poultice to combat an infected wound (III: 553)
  • Chewing willow bark helps to ease pain (III: 610)
  • A poison using manticore venom thickened by some method (possibly magic) so rather than killing instantly upon reaching the heart, it instead takes much longer to reach the heart and thereby delays death while causing excruciating pain. The flesh mortifies and oozes pus, so much so that maggots will not do their work. Violent convulsions ensue. The rotting of the flesh cannot be treated by normal means such as boiling wine and bread mold, and the veins in an arm are turning black. Leeches used to drain blood die of the poison as well (III: 821. IV: 110)
  • A fit of the shaking sickness is treated with dreamwine to calm the victim, and then leeching is performed to thin the blood in the belief that bad blood leads to anger or other strong emotion that attract the fits (III: 906)
  • If needed, a maester could carry antidotes and purges against the twenty most common poisons (IV: 173)
  • A scratch from a crannogman arrow is said to be enough to leave a man in agony with bloody bowels, screaming as blood and watery feces runs down his legs until he dies (IV: 257)
  • The poisons used by the House of Black and White can stunt growth (IV: 324, 517)
  • Sweetsleep is named in part because of its taste. A small pinch can soothe an anxious child, but too large a dose or too regular use can be dangerous (IV: 333, 516)
  • Boiled vinegar to clean out a wound (IV: 431)
  • A paste spiced with basilisk blood that gives meat a savory smell, but brings a violent madness on any creature with warm blood, whether man or beast (IV: 516-517)
  • A poison that induces blindness, deposited in warm milk and giving it a slightly burnt smell and a bitter aftertaste (IV: 518)
  • An older man with an illness that leads to severe coughing might be treated with purges, poultices, infusions, mists, sweetsleep, and bleeding (IV: 537)
  • A poison known as heart's bane, served in a cup (IV: 545)
  • It's claimed that a woman would only drink moon tea to avoid giving birth to a child (IV: 577)
2.5.2. Illness
  • Pockmarks on a face (I: 120)
  • Victims of the shaking sickness tremble uncontrollably. Bleeding is one possible treatment (I: 314. IV: 152)
  • Gout (I: 350)
  • The grey plague (I: 517)
  • Greyscale, a disease that can leave flesh stiff and dead and the skin cracked and flaking, mottled black and grey and stone-like to the touch (II: 2)
  • Baelor Breakspear's sons and father died, as well as the Hand who succeeded him, during the Great Spring Sickness which killed many tens of thousands more besides. It was bad in Lannisport, worse in Oldtown, but worst of all in King's Landing where four in ten succumbed to it. A strong man could wake up healthy on the morning and die by the evening, so swiftly did the plague strike. Fire was used to destroy the remains of the dead, and it was noted that there were no rats to be found alive (II: 77. TSS: 119, 121)
  • A pox gotten from a whore (II: 77)
  • The bloody flux (II: 305)
  • Greywater fever, probably known only in swampy lands (II: 320)
  • Brownleg (III: 645)
  • A fit of the shaking sickness is treated with dreamwine to calm the victim, and then leeching is performed to thin the blood in the belief that bad blood leads to anger or other strong emotion that attract the fits (III: 906)
  • The High Septon, a third of the Most Devout, and nearly all the silent sisters in King's Landing died during the Great Spring Sickness (TSS: 121)
  • Dorne and the Vale did not suffer from the Great Spring Sickness, as they closed off their passes and ports (TSS: 121)
  • Lord Bracken's eldest son died during the Great Spring Sickness (TSS: 121)
  • Lady Rohanne Webber's fourth husband, Ser Rolland Uffering, died during the Great Spring Sickness (TSS: 122-123)
  • The grey plague struck Oldtown in the past (IV: 120)
  • Redspots, a common childhood affliction named after the red, itchy spots that appear on the body. Nothing can be done for it but to allow it to run its course, and use salves to soothe the itching. Once suffered, children no longer fall prey to it (IV: 305)
  • It's said the orphans of the Greenblood have great knowledge of the healing arts, able to cure warts and producing the most skillful midwives (IV: 306)
  • A child afflicted with the sleeping sickness may be regularly leeched (IV: 333)