I've just finished A Dance With Dragons and realized that the Red Comet which appeared in the early books had made no appearances lately.

I've been reading the series before going to sleep so I wasn't always at my most alert and may have missed it but I don't remember anyone commenting about the comet disappearing. Since it seemed to be such a big deal for many people I would expect the plot to reflect when it stopped appearing (or if it didn't stop why is nobody noting it as they did in the past?).

Did I miss something?

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    In the last chapter of ACOK Bran sees something that might be the comet disappearing through Summer's eyes: The smoke and ash clouded his eyes, and in the sky he saw a great winged snake whose roar was a river of flame. He bared his teeth, but then the snake was gone. Don't know if its the last sighting of the comet (or even if that really is the comet). – TLP Feb 23 '14 at 11:20
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    When Comet Hale-Bopp came by in 1997, how many people did you mention its absence to after it had gone? I'm betting the answer is zero, and why should you expect Westeros to be any different? – Mike Scott Feb 23 '14 at 19:39
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    @MikeScott, in 1997 I don't remember people commenting on the comet being a herald of the end days and discussing what it signifies. – Motti Feb 23 '14 at 20:09
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    @Motti: These guys saw Hale-Bopp as a sign: en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Heaven's_Gate_(religious_group) – yatima2975 Feb 24 '14 at 9:24
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    It's entirely possible that the comet is still there. From a storytelling point of view, if nothing has really changed regarding it, there's zero value in having characters go "Yep, the comet is still there." – Anthony Grist Feb 24 '14 at 10:22
up vote 7 down vote accepted

The comet seems to have disappeared from the sky, as of A Dance with Dragons at least. Beyond not being mentioned anymore by the characters, Salladhor Saan, when talking to Davos Seaworth about leaving the cause of Stannis Baratheon and receiving payment for his damaged ships, mentions it:

When Davos had tried to assure him that he would have his payment, Salla had erupted.

"When, when? On the morrow, on the new moon, when the red comet comes again? He is promising me gold and gems, always promising, but this gold I have not seen.

Salladhor's choice of words seems to indicate that the comet is no longer visible in the Westerosi sky, as its "coming again" is used as an example of something which one doesn't know when will happen.

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    @Thanks for this, I don't remember these lines, are they from a book or from the TV series? – Motti Jun 3 '17 at 19:58
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    It's a line from A Dance with Dragons, chapter 9. – Bini Jun 5 '17 at 15:05

Since no answer has come after 24 hours, I will add my comment as an answer. Though with some reservations as to its accuracy.

In the last chapter of A Clash of Kings Bran sees something that might be the comet disappearing through Summer's eyes:

The smoke and ash clouded his eyes, and in the sky he saw a great winged snake whose roar was a river of flame. He bared his teeth, but then the snake was gone.

I don't know if its the last sighting of the comet, or even if it really is the comet -- Summer's point of view is not exactly straightforward. If it is actually the comet disappearing, it sounds like the comet fell out of the sky at this exact point in time, not just gradually disappeared.

This passage is from the last chapter of ACOK, as I said, so any mention in ASOS beyond this point would imply that this observation is not correct. Although of course with GRRM, one can never completely trust in a linear timeline between chapters.

  • Thanks for this, it's very interesting. However it doesn't answer my main question (perhaps I wasn't clear enough). I was surprised that the comet changed from being very present in the story and commented on, to suddenly not being mentioned at all. I would expect at least a mention in passing something like Well it seems that the red comment wasn't an omen to the return of house of Targaryen after all – Motti Feb 24 '14 at 9:18
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    The red comment? :) Well, from what I could gather in your question, you asked if you had missed the comet being mentioned, or disappearing. Was that not your question? As near as I could tell, no one actually said the comet heralded a Targaryen comeback. More like, everyone saw it as a herald of their own fortune. Only Old Nan said something to that effect: it be dragons, boy. Some mention "blood and fire", which is the Targaryen words, but not Targs directly. – TLP Feb 24 '14 at 9:29
  • Heh Oooooops ;) – Motti Feb 24 '14 at 9:51

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