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  1. #1

    [TV] Game of Thrones - Why is Jon Snow not Jon Stark

    I understand Jon Snow is a bastard son of Eddard Stark and an unknown mother.

    I dont understand how this lands him the name "Jon Snow". If his father is Eddard Stark, shouldn't he be Jon Stark, no matter who the mother is? Where does "Snow" even come from?

    If all the official Stark children were to die, would Jon Snow be in line of succession to be the head of House Stark?

    After Robert Baratheon's death, who succeeded House Baratheon? Did Joffrey?

    What confuses me most is how Jon Snow and Gendry are basically in identical situations - fathered by the head of one of the great houses but outside of marriage. However, they are treated completely different. Jon Snow's bastardy goes so far that he can't even wear his father's name (which i would assume will also prevent him from ever succeeding as head of House Stark), while Gendry's bastardy is no problem at all and Eddard Stark, the guy who didn't give his own bastard son his own name, tries to put Baratheon's bastard on the throne? And i would imagine that should this have worked, should Gendry have been recognised as Robert's son and heir, Gendry would also have succeeded as head of House Baratheon?

    This just confuses me so much. Does anyone understand my confusion and can clarify it?

  2. #2
    The Lightbringer MasterHamster's Avatar
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    As explained in the books "Snow" is a typical name given to 'bastards'
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  3. #3
    For him to have the name Stark, it would be a formal recognition of his heritage and could then cause potential problems in the line of succession the Lordship with his other children. Although many lords in history raised and looked after their bastard offspring, they seldom gave them formal recognition as their child unless it was their only child.
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  4. #4
    The Patient Cerunnir's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by MasterHamster View Post
    As explained in the books "Snow" is a typical name given to 'bastards'
    To further clarify, each region in the world has its own "bastard name".

    3.2. WHAT IS THE BASTARD NAME FOR EACH REGION?
    Waters for King’s Landing and Dragonstone, Snow for the North, Pyke for the Iron Islands, Rivers for the Riverlands, Stone for the Vale, Hill for the Westerlands, Flowers for the Reach, Storm for the Stormlands and Sand for Dorne. Some believe that the bastard name for Targaryen bastards is Blackfyre, however it seems that Blackfyre instead was a name which Aegon IV’s bastard son Daemon was allowed to take. This is supported by the fact that Daemon Blackfyre’s half-brothers are named Aegor and Brynden Rivers, because their mothers were of the riverlands, and Princss Elaena Targaryen’s bastard children by Lord Oakenfist had the last name of Waters.
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  5. #5
    I don't understand your confusion, it was pretty easy to understand the TV series.

  6. #6
    He's not entitled to his fathers name, as he was illegitimate, and his father had no shortage of heirs to bother formally adopting him.

  7. #7
    If for some reason you have not seen season one or read the first book this post will contain a spoiler.

    Jon Snow is called thus because he is illegitimate. There are several names like Snow used in the books as surnames for bastards. In the north that name is Snow, in the Riverlands it's Rivers etc.

    Gendry is Robert's illegitimate son. Joffrey isn't his son at all. This makes Gendry the closest thing Robert has to a heir. Unless of course illegitimacy makes you incapable of inheriting at all in which case the next king should be Stannis, Robert's younger brother. But if I recall right, Robert has admitted to being Gendry's father, which might make him a candidate to the throne.

    And why Ned treats Jon and Gendry differently is because he believes Robert to have no legitimate sons, but he himself has a son, Robb.

  8. #8
    It's common practice in this universe, bastards from every corner of the kingdom get special surnames depending on the region (bastards from Dorne for example are named "Sand"). Guess it's primarily to distinguish them from the "normal" children of the house because they are always last in the line of succession, if they are even considered at all.. which they are not in some cases. =:P
    Though bastards are usually not regarded as high(borne) as the legimate children, Jon Snow is primarily disliked by Catelyn because he's like.. erm, "a foreign" egg which constantly reminds her of Mr. Stark's betrayal, so to speak.
    Ah.. and it looks like ye only know the TV Show so far.. you'll see eventually that this thing with Gendry evolves.. quite differently, like many other things as well.

    Edit: crappucino, too slow today.. so much posts already done

  9. #9
    Mechagnome Happybucket's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by Majesty View Post
    I understand Jon Snow is a bastard son of Eddard Stark and an unknown mother.
    After Robert Baratheon's death, who succeeded House Baratheon? Did Joffrey?
    yep, he's officlally called King Joffrey Baratheon I

    Quote Originally Posted by Majesty View Post
    What confuses me most is how Jon Snow and Gendry are basically in identical situations - fathered by the head of one of the great houses but outside of marriage. However, they are treated completely different.
    their situations are completely different. Jon Snow has a very unique upbringing as far as bastards are concerned. As stated a bunch of times in the books, bastards are usually shipped off to another castle to be fostered there, they are above commoners, and they usually end up with fairly well respected positions like captain of household guards etc, but will (almost) never hold land themselves.

    Quote Originally Posted by Majesty View Post
    Jon Snow's bastardy goes so far that he can't even wear his father's name (which i would assume will also prevent him from ever succeeding as head of House Stark), while Gendry's bastardy is no problem at all
    Gendry's bastardy is almost no problem at all because he was raised far away (in terms of stature, not locationwise:P) from the noble court, he's just a blacksmith apprentice and it's actually not even common knowledge that he's Robert's son. the show doesn't show this very well, but afaik it's explained in the books.

    Quote Originally Posted by Majesty View Post
    And i would imagine that should this have worked, should Gendry have been recognised as Robert's son and heir, Gendry would also have succeeded as head of House Baratheon?
    it would never have worked, for according to the line of succession, once all of Robert's children are dead, his oldest brother (Stannis) is next in line, then Stannis's daughter, then Renly, and only after that Robert's bastards. and still not gendry because there's another bastard who's actually of noble blood on both father and mother's sides so he'd probably be more viable.

    hope this helps.

  10. #10
    Ok thanks for explaining the bastard names per region. By this i take it Jon Snow could still inherrit House Stark and "become" Jon Stark, but only if all the other children die (are murdered). For succession, official offspring > bastard offspring > sibblings/whatnot. And should Ned have succeeded at putting Gendry on the throne, Gendry would have "become" Gendry Baratheon and inherrited everything Robert possessed.

    ---------- Post added 2012-04-11 at 11:59 AM ----------

    Quote Originally Posted by hephij View Post
    it would never have worked, for according to the line of succession, once all of Robert's children are dead, his oldest brother (Stannis) is next in line, then Stannis's daughter, then Renly, and only after that Robert's bastards. and still not gendry because there's another bastard who's actually of noble blood on both father and mother's sides so he'd probably be more viable.
    I think the bastards are before the sibblings, no? That's why Ned Stark tries so hard to find him etc. Should Gendry not have been before Stannis and Renly in line of succession, there would have been no point in Ned Stark finding him, nor for the Lanisters to kill all of Robert's bastard - the sibblings come before them anyway.

  11. #11
    Mechagnome Happybucket's Avatar
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    it's been a while since i read the books, but ned never tried putting gendry on the throne? the reason he went to visit him has stuff to do with the book he borrowed from grand maester Pycelle. all of the baratheon children have black hair. he visited gendry (and other bastards) to confirm this. he didn't want to put gendry on the throne, he wanted to punt joffrey/myrcella/tommen away from it.

  12. #12
    Quote Originally Posted by hephij View Post

    it would never have worked, for according to the line of succession, once all of Robert's children are dead, his oldest brother (Stannis) is next in line, then Stannis's daughter, then Renly, and only after that Robert's bastards. and still not gendry because there's another bastard who's actually of noble blood on both father and mother's sides so he'd probably be more viable.

    hope this helps.
    This is not true, after Stannis is would go to Renly. Girls can't inherit (Except in Dorne), but if they bare sons they can inherit through their mother.

  13. #13
    Quote Originally Posted by Majesty View Post
    I understand Jon Snow is a bastard son of Eddard Stark and an unknown mother.

    I dont understand how this lands him the name "Jon Snow". If his father is Eddard Stark, shouldn't he be Jon Stark, no matter who the mother is? Where does "Snow" even come from?

    If all the official Stark children were to die, would Jon Snow be in line of succession to be the head of House Stark?

    After Robert Baratheon's death, who succeeded House Baratheon? Did Joffrey?

    What confuses me most is how Jon Snow and Gendry are basically in identical situations - fathered by the head of one of the great houses but outside of marriage. However, they are treated completely different. Jon Snow's bastardy goes so far that he can't even wear his father's name (which i would assume will also prevent him from ever succeeding as head of House Stark), while Gendry's bastardy is no problem at all and Eddard Stark, the guy who didn't give his own bastard son his own name, tries to put Baratheon's bastard on the throne? And i would imagine that should this have worked, should Gendry have been recognised as Robert's son and heir, Gendry would also have succeeded as head of House Baratheon?

    This just confuses me so much. Does anyone understand my confusion and can clarify it?
    Bastards are named by region, hence Jon Snow.

    As for successor of the Throne, or at least rightful successor, that would be Stannis. Ned Stark knew this and while he shared the general view that he might not be the best for the job, he is the rightful heir. His brother, Renly, also makes claim to the throne because he thinks that he would be a better fit. He's loved by the people, exact opposite of Stannis, though Stannis is a leader of men.

  14. #14
    If Stannis and Renly are both before any of Robert's bastard sons in line of succession, why do the Lannisters kill all of Robert's bastards, when there's 2 nobles that have a bigger claim to the throne than any of those bastards anyway? Is it just because the bastards are still in front of Joffrey, thus they must die, while Stannis and Renly are nobles with armies and can't be killed as easily as the bastards?

  15. #15
    Quote Originally Posted by Majesty View Post
    Ok thanks for explaining the bastard names per region. By this i take it Jon Snow could still inherrit House Stark and "become" Jon Stark, but only if all the other children die (are murdered). For succession, official offspring > bastard offspring > sibblings/whatnot. And should Ned have succeeded at putting Gendry on the throne, Gendry would have "become" Gendry Baratheon and inherrited everything Robert possessed.

    ---------- Post added 2012-04-11 at 11:59 AM ----------

    Jon can only become a Stark if he is legitimized by the King. Also Bastards come after siblings.
    I think the bastards are before the sibblings, no? That's why Ned Stark tries so hard to find him etc. Should Gendry not have been before Stannis and Renly in line of succession, there would have been no point in Ned Stark finding him, nor for the Lanisters to kill all of Robert's bastard - the sibblings come before them anyway.
    Ned tried to find Gendry only to find out why Jon arryn died. If Jon arryn or Ned found a bastard and presented them to the puplic, they would realize that Robert's "children" aren't his. that's why Cersei/Jofferey killed them.

  16. #16
    Mechagnome Happybucket's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by Kharnage View Post
    This is not true, after Stannis is would go to Renly. Girls can't inherit (Except in Dorne), but if they bare sons they can inherit through their mother.
    girls inherit, after sons. the difference in dorne is that girls can inherit regardless of sons.
    if in dorne a guy has children:
    girl 1
    boy 1
    boy 2
    girl 2
    then the succession will be girl 1->boy 1->boy 2->girl 2.

    anywhere else with the same children it will be : boy 1->boy 2->girl 1-> girl 2.

    and daughters still come before brothers.

  17. #17
    Stannis and Renly are before Joffrey, but because noone is questioning his legitimacy the son must come before the brothers. Bastards are never "in front" of anyone, ever, unless they get legitimized.

  18. #18
    Quote Originally Posted by hephij View Post
    it's been a while since i read the books, but ned never tried putting gendry on the throne?
    You are correct, he did not. Bastards have no place in the line of succession. As far as I know, the only bastards to have been legitimated and made an official heir to anyone is: (spoilers of A Storm of Swords)

    Ramsay Bolton/Snow. He is the bastard of Roose Bolton, the lord of Dreadfort. Ramsay is the only living son of Roose and was legitimated by King Tommen. This would indicate that for a bastard to be an heir, he does indeed need to be legitimated specifically by a king. As for Robert Baratheon and the line of succension to the throne there, Stannis Baratheon IS indeed the true king and has the best claim for the throne as Joffrey and Tommen are not children of Robert. Since Robert does not have any true children of his own, the throne passes to his oldest brother, Stannis. Again, the numerous bastards of Robert have no claim whatsoever for the throne.

  19. #19
    Girls only inherit if their father had no brothers.
    Look at Balon Greyjoy, his brother came before his son and his daughter. the same thing happened to one of the Targaryen Kings. He only had a daughter and the Line of succession passed over to his brother, who then killed the daughter,

  20. #20
    Quote Originally Posted by Kharnage View Post
    Jon can only become a Stark if he is legitimized by the King. Also Bastards come after siblings.

    Ned tried to find Gendry only to find out why Jon arryn died. If Jon arryn or Ned found a bastard and presented them to the puplic, they would realize that Robert's "children" aren't his. that's why Cersei/Jofferey killed them.
    Code:
    Spoiler: Jon will have this chance for both reasons. Also, his mother were noble actually.

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