A “Game of Thrones” fan has come up with a new theory about Jon Snow’s real parentage. Fans of George R.R. Martin’s novels and viewers of the HBO series know that the major character is the bastard son of Eddard “Ned” Stark, but what no one knows is the identity of his mother. YouTube user Alt Shift X may have a good theory on who that is.
It’s no secret that Eddard is Jon’s father from outside his marriage to Catelyn Tully. But neither the readers of Martin’s “A Song of Ice and Fire” nor the viewers of “Game of Thrones” know Jon’s mother as Martin is yet to reveal her identity.
Even show creators David Benioff and Dan Weiss aren’t privy to the real answer. In a Q&A discussion about the show in 2013, the duo said that guessing Jon Snow’s mother was Martin’s test for them before they were allowed to adapt the novel into the top-rating series that it is today.
“He asked, ‘Who is Jon Snow’s mother?’ We had discussed it before, and we gave a shocking answer. At that point, George didn’t actually say whether or not we were right or wrong, but his smile was his tell. We knew we had passed the Wonka test, at that point,” Weiss said, as quoted by Collider.
Even Kit Harrington, who plays Jon Snow, knows nothing.
Observant fans have their own theories, but perhaps the most plausible is the “R+L=J” theory, which has been explained in a video by YouTube user Alt Shift X.
According to the theory, Jon Snow’s mother is Ned’s sister Lyanna.
It’s not another case of incest, though, like Cersei and Jaime Lannister’s infamous coupling.
Apparently, Ned isn’t really Jon’s father, just his uncle. Jon is the product of Lyanna and Rhaegar Targaryen, which makes Jon the son of a prince.
As a half-Targaryen, Jon would be in danger since Robert Baratheon, who was betrothed to Lyanna, ordered the slaughter of all Targaryens.
Therefore, Lyanna had made her brother promise to raise Jon as his own to hide Jon’s true identity.
That would explain her last words, “Promise me, Ned.”
Watch the video for the explanation and the facts supporting the theory: