Posted earlier today on Reddit. Posting here with slight changes.
Been re-reading Arianne II of TWOW. Despite the travelogue nature, I really liked this chapter, because we learn a lot about Stormlands. Came to share a few thoughts on this passage.
On the surface, it is about magic vs logic. The septon argues that it was the wrath of gods that caused the difference in climates of the two sides of Sea of Dorne, while maester and Doran chooses the more scientific explanation which is also applicable to many dry places in our own planet earth.
All the same, this is a fantasy world, so we should not be too quick to discard magic or gods, who are at least some names men gave to magical phenomena.
According to myth, Durran’s wife, Elenei, was the daughter of the sea god and the goddess of the wind. We don’t know if these were part of the Old Gods of the nature, or the gods First Men used to worship before the pact marking the end of Dawn age. Durran and Elenei lived during age of Heroes, but Bran the Builder was only a boy when Storm’s End was raised, so they could have seen both Dawn Age and Age of Heroes. At any rate all these are but stories. The only First Men gods whose name we know of are Lady of the Waves and Lord of the Skies. If the Ironborn are First Men descendants, then the Drowned God and Storm God are also First Men gods. So we have different gods of different gender for Sea, Wind, Storm, Waves, Water and Sky. Sea and Water can be condensed to Water. Storm and Wind could be condensed to Wind/Air. Waves could be sea, or it could be wind (as wind brings the waves). Sky is an odd one.
A. Stormlands Myth
- Sea God : Water, Male
- Wind Goddess : Air, Female
B. Three Sisters (First Men)
- Sky God :Sky, Male
- Lady of the Waves :Air, Female (Could also be goddess of the sea)
- Drowned God : Water, Male
- Storm God : Air, Male
Overall, we have two male water deities and two female air deities. Is it possible that A and C are the same pair, and the Ironborn ‘male chauvinists’ decided to have a god instead of goddess because having a woman opposing the drowned god will not do? We may never know.
Mythology aside, does the title quote have any significance in Arianne’s story? Her brother is a Dornishman who has gone on a mission to ‘steal’ (wildling word for wedding) the daughter of two or maybe three gods – Daenerys who was called ‘child of storm’ and ‘daughter of death’. In Dany’s case, if she can really be called the daughter of any god, it is the fire god, since she was reborn from Drogo’s pyre. It was a mysterious event where we don’t know what sacrifice saved her life. She’s called Stormborn because she was born during a storm. Anyway, if Dany can be called daughter of two gods (Storm God and God of Death), Quentyn failed in stealing her. And there aren’t many Dornishmen left to steal her. Except perhaps Darkstar. Edric Dayne – too young. Arch Yronwood – too big. Gerris Drinkwater – too lowborn. Maybe a Northman born in Dorne might succeed?
A speculated family tree of Gods