If Tywin died suddenly before AGOT starts, who would inherit Casterly Rock? Jaimie is out, so would it go to Tyrion or Kevan?
ravenking1771 said:Hey there I saw the recent question about the Casterly Rock inheritance and I wanted to know how firmly did the medieval aristocracy adhere to inheritance I.e. Tyrion is Tywin eldest eligible make child and thus from a legal perspective his heir but Tywin does not consider him and if Tywin died before the events of the novel Tyrion would no doubt be challenged if not passed over by his family, so I wanted know how firmly did these governments respect inheritance rights?
Since I’ve gotten a couple questions about this, I figure I should probably consolidate them into one response rather than repeat myself. It depends on what Tywin set out in his will, and the balance of political power when it comes to both the claimants and whoever might enforce and/or recognize the validity of the will.
Certainly, Tyrion would have a very strong claim under Westerosi law; he is the oldest eligible male child of the deceased, and he had done nothing that would make him ineligible (like joining the Night’s Watch or the Citadel or the Faith).
However, whoever Tywin named in the will would also have a claim, and that claim would be buttressed by that person’s own lineage – if it’s Cersei, proximity would no doubt be stressed as well as the will; if it’s Kevan, then he’d be pointing to being the son of Tytos as well as Tywin’s brother as well as the wil. And so on.
But the balance of power is important: if Tywin dies pre-AGOT, Cersei is going to lobby for her own line (whether for herself or one of her children), and Robert might give in or he might give it to Tyrion out of spite, or he might want to give it to Kevan b/c Kevan fits his mental model of a strong Warden of the West (in the same way that he didn’t want a sickly boy to hold the Wardenship of the East). At the same time, Jon Arryn’s wishes would play a large role in that situation; he’s more of a traditionalist, so he might want it to go to Tyrion because Andal law says so and wills that go against the law lead to civil war and disorder.
If Tywin dies pre-Purple Wedding, it depends when exactly. If it’s after the Battle of Blackwater, Cersei is Regent and Tyrion has lost his handship, so he’s at a disadvantage. If it’s before the Battle of Blackwater, Tyrion has a significant advantage.
However, a lot would depend on how the Lannister lords at the Rock or at Harrenhal or at King’s Landing decide to jump: do they take their cues from Kevan as the oldest male Lannister on the spot, and does that mean he gets to play kingmaker or does he go for the Rock himself? Is their misogyny stronger than their ableism or vice versa? Do they fear that Tyrion’s heirs would inherit both the Rock and Winterfell, or that Cersei’s children would inherit both the Rock and the throne and/or Storm’s End?
One of the interesting things in this context is that Tyrion has a very real and strong talent for politicking, but he doesn’t actually ever decide to exercise, for a wide variety of reasons, until his father makes him Hand-by-proxy.
My personal belief is that it related to Tyrion’s self-loathing, that he doesn’t really believe anyone could ever view him as worth anything so why bother trying? Coupled with the fact that Tyrion REALLY doesn’t want to directly confront his fathers hatred for him. Trying to maneuver to well-place himself for any succession dispute would mean he has to acknowledge that there might BE a succession dispute, that his father has written down on paper somewhere “Fuck Tyrion, he’s no heir of mine.” And he wouldn’t want to bear that.
I think this is the reason Tyrion has done very little spadework, as it were, with the high and mighty of the Westerlands. Tyrion, if he were to acknowledge “there’s a decent chance my father will disinherit me” should have, and probably would have, put his natural talents to work. He’d begin cultivating Jaime; they have a good relationship, and the support of the man who would have inherited the Rock had he not gone to the Kingsguard would matter. He’d cultivate Kevan, who he regards as a fair-minded mine. He’d cultivate his Aunt’s family, who are not Westermen but control a lot of money and men. He’d work on House Marbrand, House Crakehall, on Daven, on the moneylenders and merchant princes of Lannisport.
He’d especially work on Robert. Tyrion can be an amusing little asshole when he sets his mind to it and Robert appreciates that, and they both hate the Lannisters. Tyrion could absolutely use that. He could establish himself at court as the GOOD Lannister, as the one who always has a cup of wine and a jest at Cersei’s expense to hand, who when Robert gives him a job he always does it doesn’t fucking bother Robert with all the godsdamned coin-counting DETAILS of the fucking thing, who has Robert’s back in the Small Council, who runs interference with his brothers. He probably steers clear of Stannis, but works hard on Renly.
As for the original ask, of Tywin dropping dead before the Purple Wedding… I think in that situation, in the absence of a will naming Kevan himself, Kevan controls the balance of power re: Western support. If Kevan backs Cersei that’s the ballgame, if he doesn’t then suddenly there’s a mad scramble to lock up other support. The Tyrell’s probably get involved. I would actually wonder if the Tyrell’s don’t demand Cersei re-marry to a Tyrell as a condition of supporting her claim.
Tyrion seems to have been, pre-AGOT, in something of a comfortable rut as a courtier. As long as he avoids pissing off Tywin, the allowance money keeps going, he seems to spend most of his time at King’s Landing where he can hang out with Jaime away from dad and drink wine and read as much as he likes. The combination of self-loathing and trauma seems to have made him focus on maintaining the status quo and not making it worse for himself.