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Thread: Why did Cort tell Roland and Cuthbert to...?

  1. #26
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    Quote Originally Posted by ManOfWesternesse View Post
    I think t/s is basically saying the bread was to attract the crows in to the bodies (ie 'for' them) as opposed to your post speculating that the bread might be to attract the crows away from the bodies Lisa.

    Personally I still think the bread was meant to attract crows in.
    agreed.

    Them being there would essentially make them scarecrows, and make the birds hesitant to move in. but anyone who has ever fed chickens or other outdoor farm fowl will know that as soon as you throw feed and step away other hangers on, (i.e. doves, crows, and sparrows) will dart in as soon ass they see you scatter food and step away.

    this was pretty much an agrarian society, it's all they had left, so the birds would be conditioned this way.
    "So many vows. They make you swear and swear. Defend the King, obey the King, obey your father, protect the innocent, defend the weak. But what if your father despises the King? What if the King massacres the innocent? It's too much. No matter what you do, you're forsaking one vow or another."

  2. #27
    Constant Reader Darkthoughts has a spectacular aura about Darkthoughts has a spectacular aura about Darkthoughts has a spectacular aura about Darkthoughts's Avatar

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    Quote Originally Posted by Dalvo View Post
    Quote Originally Posted by Darkthoughts View Post
    Actually, today I'm thinking the opposite

    You see, it would have been unusual - in a place where hanging was the accepted capital punishment (because the gallows would be in use and it wouldn't make sense to build a new gallows everytime someone was hung) - to leave the bodies hanging indefinately. They'd probably leave them a few days (to make an example of them) and then take them down. So I'm wondering if the bread was actually to keep the crows off the body, as Dalvo originally suggested. But that Cort's intention in asking the boys to perform this action was the sort of lesson in reflection that Brian suggested.
    I totally agree, that was exactly what I was trying to say. I think the major reason was to give the boys a lession, of that I'm sure, but he could just told them to watch the hanging. So I think that there were a meaning for spreading bread below him, that meaning would be to keep the birds eating the bread and not the body, at least for time enough so the body would be taken out and buried or something like this. If you re-read the chapter where this occour you'll see that in the very ending of the chapter Roland would think something like this: "there are thousands birds here, so the bread is only simbolycal". <----- This is the major clue!!! Please if someone agree or desagree lets keep up with our discution.

    PSsorry for any English errors or anything i said wrong, I'm brazilian and I not so good in English....)
    No problem, your English is great!

    I'm going to have to reread it before I comment more. However, I do recall reading of food being left out for carrion eaters to keep them off bodies (on a battlefield maybe?) can't remember where I read that now...I'll have to search through some stuff...

  3. #28
    Numenorean ManOfWesternesse is on a distinguished road ManOfWesternesse's Avatar

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    Quote Originally Posted by turtlesong View Post
    [1] wow. sneak in to a thread and start a war.

    [2] i didn't think it had anything to do with the body at all. i thought all birds of prey were god's gunslingers and the leaving of the bread was an offering for them.

    [3] screw hax, he was a traitor; hence invisible to all gunslingers and gunslingers-to-be.

    [1]
    [2] Yeah, but crows are no birds of prey - just carrion-eaters!
    [3] - fully agree. Boy was I pissed off when Roland called his name before the Tower!

    Quote Originally Posted by Dalvo View Post
    ....So I think that there were a meaning for spreading bread below him, that meaning would be to keep the birds eating the bread and not the body, at least for time enough so the body would be taken out and buried or something like this.
    Still disagree with that idea.
    There's no way a little slice of bread is going to keep all those crows off the body for more than an instant. Certainly not for any period of time to allow for taking it down & burying it. Really depends on the local custom there - but everyone cleared off after the hanging (the boys were the last there) so I have to assume practice was to leave the bodies for some period of time before burial.
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  4. #29
    Traveler Dalvo is on a distinguished road

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    ManOfWesternesse first of all, was not just a slice of bread, was a full bread, Roland had half and CUthberg the other half. And yes, it would not keep the birds off the body for long, and that's why Roland realised the bread was simbolyc!!!

  5. #30
    Banned The Lady of Shadows is on a distinguished road

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    Quote Originally Posted by ManOfWesternesse View Post
    Quote Originally Posted by turtlesong View Post
    [1] wow. sneak in to a thread and start a war.

    [2] i didn't think it had anything to do with the body at all. i thought all birds of prey were god's gunslingers and the leaving of the bread was an offering for them.

    [3] screw hax, he was a traitor; hence invisible to all gunslingers and gunslingers-to-be.

    [1]
    [2] Yeah, but crows are no birds of prey - just carrion-eaters!
    [3] - fully agree. Boy was I pissed off when Roland called his name before the Tower!

    <snip>
    i was actually referring to the rooks. i thought the bread was specifically referred to as an offering to the rooks. damn, now i'm going to have to pull out the book and find it. . . . are rooks birds of prey or carrion eaters? does anyone know or am i going to have to google that? ::lazyturtle::

  6. #31
    Numenorean ManOfWesternesse is on a distinguished road ManOfWesternesse's Avatar

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    Quote Originally Posted by turtlesong View Post
    i was actually referring to the rooks. i thought the bread was specifically referred to as an offering to the rooks. damn, now i'm going to have to pull out the book and find it. . . . are rooks birds of prey or carrion eaters? does anyone know or am i going to have to google that? ::lazyturtle::
    Sorry t/s, I don't dispute that the Book describes the bread as an offering.

    Where I come from, rooks and crows are taken to mean the same bird. They are both members of the overall 'crow' family of birds, the rook being one of the smaller types of crow I think. In some places people would be more inclined to differentiate between them I think.

    They are not Birds of Prey (that being the preserve of hunters such as Hawks and Eagles etc... etc...)

    / I wonder if King had a clear concept or understanding of his own intent for the meaning of the whole crow thing? Wouldn't it be great to be able to just ask him!

    Quote Originally Posted by Dalvo View Post
    ManOfWesternesse first of all, was not just a slice of bread, was a full bread, Roland had half and CUthberg the other half. And yes, it would not keep the birds off the body for long, and that's why Roland realised the bread was simbolyc!!!
    Hi Dalvo, welcome!
    I thought it was an end-slice of bread Cort went into his kitchen to get? I'd have to look it up. But it is acedemic, a slice or a loaf or whatever would have the same net effect?
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  7. #32
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    Actually, while both are members of the corvidae family, rooks are larger and have bigger beaks I only know because we have a rookery in a tree by our house.

    They are carrion eaters and not birds of prey - but are generally better known for eating meat that is decomposed or...you know, a bit splatted And whenever we leave out bread/food for the rooks they take it back to their nests to eat it

    Are we just meant to take some sort of symbolism from it?

    Hax was a traitor, but I think Roland called his name because Roland had been equally merciless for the cause he believed in...perhaps he was acknowledging that?

  8. #33
    Numenorean ManOfWesternesse is on a distinguished road ManOfWesternesse's Avatar

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    Quote Originally Posted by Darkthoughts View Post
    Hax was a traitor, but I think Roland called his name because Roland had been equally merciless for the cause he believed in...perhaps he was acknowledging that?
    I know Lisa, I know.
    But it still annoyed the hell out of me!

    Thanks for the Rooks info.
    What I see mostly in these parts are grey-back crows, nasty carrion-fowl! farmers maintain that they'll attack new-born lambs, which earns them hatred in farming circles around here.
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  9. #34
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    Quote Originally Posted by Darkthoughts View Post
    Hax was a traitor, but I think Roland called his name because Roland had been equally merciless for the cause he believed in...perhaps he was acknowledging that?
    i saw it that way as well.
    "So many vows. They make you swear and swear. Defend the King, obey the King, obey your father, protect the innocent, defend the weak. But what if your father despises the King? What if the King massacres the innocent? It's too much. No matter what you do, you're forsaking one vow or another."

  10. #35
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    It does say that Roland sort of grasped that the bread was symbolic, but i kinda felt like it was to make sure that they'd have to get close to the body and see death up close and personal. Remember Bert touched his ankle when they got there. Since they'd be dealing in lead the rest of their lives.

  11. #36
    Traveler Myrtok is on a distinguished road

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    Cort had to know that the boys had considered Hax a friend prior to discovering his treachery. Scattering bread at his feet to help attract carion eaters was a way of "pissing on his grave." The lesson was that for a gunslinger, even a former friend who crossed the white was not worthy of any compassion.

    Sure, Roland eventually figures out that it is all symbolic, since there were plenty of crows around anyway, but that doesn't take away the point of the lesson, or the ceremony of inviting the crows to peck at the corpse of a former friend who had turned traitor.

    All in my humble opinion of course

  12. #37
    Numenorean ManOfWesternesse is on a distinguished road ManOfWesternesse's Avatar

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    Quote Originally Posted by Myrtok View Post
    .....All in my humble opinion of course
    Hmmmm. good opinion it is. right to the point.
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  13. #38
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    Agreed. The birds are sure to pick at him, anyway, so it is a merely symbolic act of encouraging them.

  14. #39
    Traveler petepizz is on a distinguished road

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    Maybe it's because Had is a disgraced cook and bread at his feet is insulting? Seeing as to put any other food at his feet would surely attract other unwanted critters.

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