In the Netflix series "The Witcher", S1 E2, Jaskier the bard composes and sings a song "Toss a Coin to Your Witcher" which references the "Valley of Plenty".

What is this "Valley of Plenty" that Jaskier is referring to?

Lyrics from this reddit page:

Toss a coin to your Witcher
O’ Valley of Plenty
O’ Valley of Plenty

Toss a coin to your Witcher
And friend of humanity

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    The valley surrounded by the mountain's where the elves lived after being expelled from said valley. It was the valley of plenty because it had good harvests, probably due at least in part to the genocidal war fought against the elves, which led to mass burials that enriched the soil. The irony is that the pleasant name and the anodyne stories mask the bitter reality. – Adamant Jan 17 at 2:33
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    Obviously, the "friend to humanity" bit is very funny as well. He's had his very DNA altered, refuses to call himself human, and to cap it off is a misanthrope. The whole song is supposed to be the very opposite of reality. – Adamant Jan 17 at 2:40
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    @Adamant Well, he refuses to call himself human because he is, in fact, not one. His DNA was altered, but he wasn't the one who altered it. It was done so that he could protect humanity from monsters, which he does. He also occasionally protects others for reasons that have nothing to do with money (Duny, for instance). I'd say "friend to humanity" is not especially ironic here, whether or not "valley if plenty" is. I don't have a high opinion of the show's writing, but I think Geralt tends to be presented as mostly a good guy in the books and games as well. – Misha R Jan 17 at 6:21
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    I think he has a fairly low opinion of humanity, as a whole. That doesn't mean he doesn't see himself as obligated to be moral, as much toward dragons or elves as toward humans. I see that part of the song as very ironic - it's saying that Geralt helps humanity by killing the non-human monsters. In reality, as often as not he helps the "monsters" by killing humans. Geralt doesn't protect humanity from monsters: he protects people from monsters, which is a very different thing. – Adamant Jan 17 at 6:30
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    In the books this region is called "Valley of Flowers" and is very fertile. Looking at differences between serial and books, it could be renamed for better sounding, but it's just speculation. – Elas Jan 17 at 13:40

It's never made explicit, but the Valley of Plenty is the land that the humans took from the elves during what was basically a genocide. That is, the town where Geralt was at the beginning of the episode.

We know it's a valley both because of the topography that we see in the show, and because of the references to the elves as having retreated to the mountains.

The elves called this Dol Blathanna before bequeathing it to the humans and retreating into their golden palaces in the mountains.

"Four Marks", The Witcher

The "of Plenty" bit is suggested in Filavandrel's assertion that:

I called it digging a mass grave for everyone I loved.

And now the humans proudly watch these very fields grow, our babies fertilizer for their grain.

"Four Marks", The Witcher

So we know that it's a region that has good harvests, probably enhanced, as Filavandrel says, by all the bodies buried there.

I'm not sure there's any dialogue in the show suggesting that it's the actual name of the region rather than Jaskier's coinage, although the books may indicate otherwise. It's very possible that this song is meant to be sarcastic, since Jaskier was there when Filavandrel told them the actual history of the region, and Jaskier didn't seem unaffected. Obviously he wants to write a song to earn some money for Geralt, but perhaps he's not above working some irony in.

Indeed, the "friend to humanity" bit is sufficiently ironic that it lends some credence to this interpretation. Geralt is a mutant who appears to have some light contempt for humanity, judging by his insistence that Filavandrel not classify him as human and his general misanthropic character. Practically speaking, as well, he isn't a friend to humanity in the sense in which it would be understood in a world with many other sentient species: he's as likely to kill humans to help a dragon, or to save a cursed knight with a pretty inhuman aspect, or to sacrifice an evildoer to cure a striga, as he is to kill a Black Sun mutant and her gnomes to save human villagers.

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    In the books the land is magically fertile and is called "The Valley of Flowers". As I recall the humans took it from the elves because it was already exceptionally fertile. Bards making romanticized versions of Geralt's exploits is a running theme of the books. – Max Jan 17 at 14:26

A metaphorical Valley of Plenty

While I like @Adamant's answer in that the valley may very well reference the region they are in, I personally believe that it actually references the people he's singing to.

The "Valley of Plenty" are "the people that the Witcher has helped". The whole idea behind Jaskier's songs is to increase the prestige of Geralt and to turn public perception away from "he's a scary mutant Witcher" and towards "he's a helpful guy who solves your problems".

Read in that way, "toss a coin to your witcher, o valley of plenty" translates roughly to "give him some money, you have plenty and can miss a single coin". This is also more obvious in the rest of his song, it describes the things Geralt has gone through 'for humanity' and that he deserves a reward.

He wiped out your pest

Got kicked in his chest

He’s a friend of humanity

So give him the rest

That’s my epic tale

Our champion prevailed

Defeated the villain

Now pour him some ale

The whole idea of Jaskier's songs is to hype up the accomplishments of Geralt because he promised to make him famous and successful. The Valley of Plenty are the people who won't have to face all those hardships because their "friend of humanity" is doing it for them.

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  • If that were the case, I would think it would be Land of Plenty. It references the people he is singing to, sure, but because they live in the valley he uses that term. – Adamant Jan 17 at 8:22
  • Anyway, we can see even more irony in this part: Geralt didn't wipe out anyone, and there wasn't exactly a villain to be defeated. – Adamant Jan 17 at 8:24
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    @Adamant Yeah, Jaskier is obviously lying, but the peasants don't need to know that. The devil that was stealing their grain is gone, but out of their own volition. If the peasants think Geralt fought it and his army of elves, instead of getting captured and convincing them to move, than he likely wouldn't have gotten his payment. The whole idea is to make Geralt seem like the hero the people need. It's a clever song, and it also seems to be why Geralt eventually allowed him to tag along after saying "That's not how it went at all!" – Theik Jan 17 at 8:26
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    While I accepted the other answer since that seems more canon, this (answer) was exactly what I was thinking of first as well -- that Jaskier was referring to humanity as the "Valley of Plenty" and asking them to "toss a coin", but I was also thinking, "nah, it can't be that convoluted, can it?" – Sam Jan 18 at 19:14
  • Really, it's exactly the same thing as when you go to a concert and the performer addresses the audience as their city name, e.g., "HELLO SAN FRANCISCO!" – dgould Jan 21 at 17:22

I go for the metaphorical Valley. I think it is quite obvious. And in the german version of the song "Gebet Gold eurem Hexer, ihr gütigen Menschen" they even show it. It's translated to "Bestow gold to your witcher, you benevolent people"

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  • This seems to be more of a comment on this answer stating it is metaphorical than an answer to the question because of the opening wording. You make a good point with the German translation find though so it would be better to edit this to focus it into more of a standalone answer. – TheLethalCarrot Aug 10 at 11:52

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