A detailed look at the life, times and works of the man who knows the most about the “higher mysteries”. Want to learn more about dragons, ravens, or why the seasons are so crazy? You do not want to miss this episode on Septon Barth. He’s the leading expert in all of A Song of Ice and Fire on those topics and more! We made this episode before Fire and Blood.
Ser Ryam Redwyne was the greatest knight of his day, and one of the worst Hands ever to serve a king. Septon Murmison’s prayers worked miracles, but as Hand he soon had the whole realm praying for his death. Lord Butterwell was renowned for wit, Myles Smallwood for courage, Ser Otto Hightower for learning, yet they failed as Hands, every one. As for birth, the dragonkings oft chose Hands from amongst their own blood, with results as various as Baelor Breakspear and Maegor the Cruel. Against this, you have Septon Barth, the blacksmith’s son the Old King plucked from the Red Keep’s library, who gave the realm forty years of peace and plenty.
He was the son of a common blacksmith and had been given to the Faith while young. But his brilliance made itself known, and in time he came to serve in the library at the Red Keep, tending the king’s books and records. There King Jaehaerys became acquainted with him…
With Barth’s aid and advice, King Jaehaerys did more to reform the realm than any other king who lived before or after.
Yet if Alysanne was Jaehaerys’s great love, his greatest friend was Septon Barth. No man of humble birth ever rose so high as the plainspoken but brilliant septon.
Septon Barth’s claim that the Valyrians came to Westeros because their priests prophesied that the Doom of Man would come out of the land beyond the narrow sea can safely be dismissed as nonsense, as can many of Barth’s queerer beliefs and suppositions.
Dragons are neither male nor female. Barth saw the truth of that, but now one and now the other, as changeable as flame. The language misled us all for a thousand years. Daenerys is the one, born amidst salt and smoke. The dragons prove it.