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November, 12 2005
OK, folks-this is the general forum now for questions that don't seem to fit in any of the other threads. I'm going to sort some of the earlier posts into the appropriate forums, but it might take a while, so bear with me. I'll delete the ones that have already been reposted by their authors.
I detect in you a burning desire to give Andra some family, Rebecca! I suppose that it's possible, but while they might have known of Andrahar's existence as a child, I don't know that they would ever discover what happened to him after he moved to Gondor, and he's certainly got no way to track his kin down. I'll mulch that one a bit though, and see if anything comes of it.
Well, yes, I suppose that's so. Although actually it was just my brain carrying through the first inkling of the idea of Andra possibly having siblings (which, in fact, was the result of my remembering that his mother had been his father's favorite, which made more siblings seem likely). Once I started thinking about his mother's family's descent into slavery it occurred to me that his mother's misfortune was to be the favorite of a powerful man who had legitimate sons with legitimate wives. Whereas if she'd been her beautiful, charming self with a man of lesser station, she might have been freed. And how different things would have been for Andra. I'm assuming that slavery in Harad was relatively fluid, as it was in the Middle East, Africa & Asia (as well as the Roman Empire & other slave-holding societies) throughout most of history. The static slave society in the U.S., with little to no chance of being freed, was rather uncommon.
So I wasn't thinking that Andra's relatives would come looking for him necessarily, nor he them. But as Nargil & dpetrash have already mentioned, it did occur to me -- after you confirmed that Rothos will marry the Haradrim ambassador's daughter -- that it would be lovely if Andra's bloodline did, in a way, merge with Imri's. Probably Andra's cousin wouldn't become ambassador, but if, say, Andra's aunt had been bought by a lesser noble, one with only one legitimate wife who conveniently fell ill and died, perhaps eventually he would make his concubine his wife. And if they had a daughter (who would be Andra's cousin), perhaps she (the cousin) might marry the man who, in the likely political upheaval in Harad after the Ring War, became the ambassador to Gondor. And they just happen to have a beautiful, brilliant daughter ...
Anyway, that's what I was thinking. As for Andra's half-brother's mother causing trouble for him, she'd have to have influence in order to accomplish that. If she was a younger wife, my understanding of polygamous societies suggests that would be unlikely. Younger wives were less likely to have come from the most powerful families themselves (younger wives have less status -- at least in the Chinese model, but I think also in the Arab tradition; I might be wrong there though). The heir is usually the firstborn male of the first wife, although in the event that he doesn't survive to inherit I don't know what happens with his remaining brother. Of course, she could have been the favorite wife, which would have afforded her power while her husband was alive. But with Andrahar's father dead, his half-brother's mother would have very little in the way of power unless her sons were well-placed, or she had powerful brothers.
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