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Did you know I caught an arrow with my own hand, It's the truth I swear!
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- Dandelion

Julian Alfred Pankratz, Viscount de Lettenhove, better known as Dandelion, was a poet, minstrel, bard, and close friend of Geralt of Rivia.

Biography

Not much is known about Dandelion's family except that he was of noble birth and was a cousin of Ferrant de Lettenhove, the royal instigator of Kerack.[3]

He received his early education in a temple school, where, according to Geralt, literacy was "beaten into him with a cane". However, he didn't truly get into poetry until he was 19, after being inspired by his love for Countess de Stael.[4]

Dandelion studied the seven liberal arts for four years at Oxenfurt University before later becoming a professor, but only taught students for a year before leaving the academy to travel the world. He would, however, visit Oxenfurt from time to time to give guest lectures.

Within a very few years he gained worldwide fame and became known as one of the best minstrels in the Northern Kingdoms, with his best known song was the Ballad of the Lion Cub of Cintra.

Meeting Geralt

Dandelion first met Geralt at a fête in the town of Gulet in Aedirn. There, the poet had knocked up a girl under the musician's podium, and her four sturdy brothers were looking for him all over town, threatening to geld him and cover him in pitch and sawdust.

The so called Valley of Flowers seemed just right the right location for the duo's swift escape, as it was supposed to be the edge of the inhabited world, the last outpost of civilization. It was in the small town of Upper Posada, located in a part of the Northern Realms that later became Dol Blathanna, that the pair had their first adventure together, involving a nasty Sylvan and an encounter with Dol Blathanna's native inhabitants, the Elves. During this adventure, Dandelion received his priceless lute from Toruviel.[5]

At some point Dandelion offered his services to the Redanian Secret Service, though it seemed his loyalty was dubious at the least, as he also collaborated with Temerian agents and special forces.

During his travels with Geralt, Dandelion started to write his memoirs, entitled "Half a Century of Poetry"; twice, in fact. His first attempt was lost in the bottom of the duchess of Toussaint's closet after the poet was banished from her duchy. But rather than bemoaning that loss, the poet decided to rewrite his memoirs from scratch. His poems were later bound in two collections: The Adversities of Loving and Time of the Moon.
The following is considered game canon only and may contradict Andrzej Sapkowski's works.

Ciri Returns

Dandelion was contacted by Ciri for aid in fixing a phylactery, which could either be used to cast or lift a curse; Ciri kept her objective to herself and Dandelion was unwilling to pry any further. Unfortunately, with mage hunts going on in Novigrad, Dandelion decided to turn to Whoreson Junior, a member of the Big Four crime lords of Novigrad. Junior agreed to find someone to repair the phylactery but for a steep price: he wanted Dandelion to steal Sigi Reuven's treasure and who was another Big Four.

Dandelion eventually conjured up a plan with the help of Dudu and Kalkstein and while he succeeded in getting the treasure, the commander of the Temple Guard, Caleb Menge, found out and took the treasure for himself. Believing the bard had betrayed him, Whoreson Junior's men chased Dandelion and Ciri all the way to Temple Isle. Ciri manged to barely escape from being killed by teleporting away, but Dandelion was unfortunately captured by Menge's men and was jailed while Menge waited to publically execute the bard on Oxenfurt.
End of game canon content.

Known ballads

The Witcher

In the game, Dandelion is an avid dice poker player, a sharper rank. From Chapter III onward, Geralt can play him for the sheer pleasure of the game and orens, but officially, it is only in Chapter IV that he can play the bard as part of the Sharper quest.

People Dandelion full

Journal entry

I've heard rumors that the famous bard and poet Dandelion visited the Outskirts.
I met Dandelion, who has supposedly always been my best friend. From what I've heard, Dandelion is an indefatigable windbag, a buffoon, and a wastrel. He is also a womanizer with an incredible talent for getting into trouble. At the same time, Dandelion is a truly talented artist, despite his tendency to wander the countryside and eke out a living through occasional performances.
Dandelion got into trouble and I had to help him out. Everything I've heard about him has proven to be true.
A friend in need is a friend indeed. Dandelion somehow convinced Triss that I needed him and she teleported him here. He has joined me in my exile in Murky Waters.
I ran into Dandelion again and I think it was no coincidence. Either Dandelion wants to aid me in my search or he wants to witness the end of this journey so he can compose a ballad afterwards. It could also be both.

Side Effects premium module

Journal entry

A troubadour and bon-vivant, Dandelion is an old friend and companion. Known for his promiscuous lifestyle and romances, he also has an incredible talent for getting into trouble.

Associated quests

The Witcher 2: Assassins of Kings

Tw2 full Dandelion

Dandelion first appears in Flotsam as he's about to be hanged at the main square for debauchery and burning down one of Flotsam's buildings. Geralt, Triss, and Vernon Roche (for whom Dandelion has secretly been working as a spy) come across this scene and deal with the problem.

Journal entry

It is always awkward to write about oneself, yet I cannot shirk this duty. In an effort to preempt any accusations of partiality, I shall set down the humblest of notes, relating only the best-known facts. Dandelion, in reality the Viscount de Lettenhove, though titles are unimportant, is a certified troubadour, a lecturer at Oxenfurt University, a persona known among society as a charmer, poet, dandy and unparalleled lover. Almost everyone north of the Yaruga has heard of him, and those who have not are either boors or simpletons or both, as a result of which their opinions do not matter in the slightest. Dandelion played a significant part in the most important events of the era. He loved, fought, negotiated, and acquired immense knowledge, even that of the forbidden variety. His works are a testimony of the times, but it is his moving poetic tropes that have brought him true fame. The important thing in this story is that Dandelion was a friend to Geralt of Rivia – possibly his only true friend. He was Geralt's confidant, advisor, and companion in misery (for it was impossible to experience good fortune in the witcher's company). What Geralt did, Dandelion faithfully recounted, and one should not give credence to those who accuse this humble chronicler of confabulating.
Discretion, a virtue I have always professed, obliges me to remain silent about the circumstances in which, through the person of Vernon Roche, I began working with the Temerian intelligence service. Suffice it to say that there comes a moment in everyone's life when, facing great events, they cannot remain indifferent. And so I could not stand aside as history took shape before my very eyes. My dedication to the cause brought me to Flotsam at the time. There, through an unfortunate incident involving twins at the local brothel, a town guard, a dog, a cat, and an oil lamp, I wound up on the scaffold in the town square, from which I barely escaped with my life.
Tw2 journal Dandelion
If Geralt chooses Roche's path during the end of chapter I:
Obviously, when Geralt decided to continue his search in King Henselt's military camp, located in a borderland soon to be engulfed by the flames of war, I chose to accompany him, for the witcher could at times be naive as a child and knew as much about politics as a ghoul knows about cooking. Thus the chances were slim to none that, bereft of my help, he would manage to find new leads without getting embroiled in some trouble along the way. As his friend, I clearly could not allow that.
In hindsight, the pamphlet against Henselt's rule could have been better written, yet I am pleased with it anyway. I'm not accustomed to ignoring human misfortune, and Henselt made a mistake when he insulted art – I was merely the instrument of its retribution.
When Geralt and Roche headed for Loc Muinne to meet their destiny, I had little desire to sit in Henselt's camp. Despite their victory, the Kaedwenis' mood was as sour as milk in the udders of a dead cow. Therefore I packed up, resolving to reach Loc Muinne in time to witness the important events transpiring there. This was not to be, however, as Geralt's arrival accelerated events as usual. Thus I know the rest of the story only from the accounts of others, yet I present it here as faithfully as possible – anything omitted was surely not worth a mention in the first place.
If Geralt chooses Iorveth's path during the end of chapter I:
Obviously, when Geralt decided to continue his search in Vergen, located in a borderland soon to be engulfed by the flames of war, I chose to accompany him, for the witcher could at times be naive as a child and knew as much about politics as a ghoul knows about cooking. Thus the chances were slim to none that, bereft of my help, he would manage to find new leads without getting embroiled in some trouble along the way. As his friend I clearly could not allow that.
Having taken part in many adventures by Geralt's side, when he asked for my help I agreed without hesitation. I had already been imperiled when helping him in less rewarding tasks than using poetry to lure an unparalleled demonic lover. Thus I had the chance to risk my life in the name of three most beautiful values: friendship, poetry and love – there was no other decision to make.
Geralt and Iorveth headed for Loc Muinne to meet their destiny, yet I decided to stay in Vergen a bit longer. I had more than enough material for new ballads, therefore I fought the urge to reach Loc Muinne in time to witness the important events transpiring there. Thus I know the rest of the story only from the accounts of others, yet I present it here as faithfully as possible – anything omitted was surely not worth a mention in the first place.

Associated quests

The Witcher 3: Wild Hunt

Tw3 journal dandelion

Journal entry

I would wager anyone that you, dear reader, are a person of culture and taste - and therefore already familiar with me, Dandelion, and the role I am to play in the following tale. Nevertheless, allow me to sketch a few lines by way of self-portrait, for the sake of thoroughness, and in the event you have spent much of the last half-century in some dark corner where the light of my star has yet to reach.
"Born in 1229, a talented poet and troubadour, a graduate of Oxenfurt Academy, a frequent performer at royal courts, an unequaled lover appreciated, and in some cases adored, by ladies worldwide, a skilled negotiator and a stirring orator" - such is the image of the bard Dandelion as painted by his friends and promoters.
This image is, of course, somewhat overbright in its coloring - I personally prefer to think of myself as a dedicated artist in thrall to his Muse, one whose work has benefited immeasurably from the fact that I was, am and forever will remain a close friend and steadfast companion to the witcher Geralt. It is his fate I chronicle in this present work and his story which I shall sing till the end of my days.
Having learned of my disappearance, Geralt dropped everything to find out what had become of me. Though at first he suspected the cause of my trouble lay in my many and turbulent affairs of the heart, he later determined that I had strayed into a life of crime, seeking to steal treasure belonging to one of the leaders of Novigrad's underworld.
The motivations for my actions became clear some time later. I proved that, when it came to helping Cirilla, I would not balk at sticking my head into the lion's maw, let alone crossing such common scum as Cyprian Wiley, better known (for good reason!) as Whoreson.
Only a madman calls it courage to fight when faced with overwhelming odds. Though known for my capricious and unpredictable charm, I am not yet considered mad, and so, while defending my companion's escape to the very last, I ultimately allowed the temple guard to take me to their prison, where I awaited my imminent execution.
The saying does not lie - "true friends show when fortune hides her face." My dear comrades gave ample evidence of this by breaking me free from my prison transport, saving me from certain and painful death.

Associated quests

In other languages

Flag Language Name
Flag uk Flag USA English Dandelion or Dandilion
Flag poland Polish (original) Jaskier
Flag bulgaria Bulgarian Лютиче
Flag czech Czech Marigold
Flag netherlands Dutch Ranonkel
Flag finland Finnish Valvatti
Flag france French Jaskier
Flag germany German Rittersporn
Flag hungary Hungarian Kökörcsin (books)
Dandelion (games)
Flag italy Italian Dandelion (in the games)

Ranuncolo (in the stories)

Flag Japan Japanese ダンデリオン
Flag Lithuania Lithuanian Vėdrynas
Flag Portugal Portuguese Jaskier
Flag Romania Romanian Jaskier
Flag russia Russian Лютик
Flag serbia Serbian Neven
Flag slovakia Slovak Blyskáč
Flag spain Spanish Jaskier
Flag sweden Swedish Riddarsporre
Flag turkey Turkish Dandelion
Flag ukraine Ukrainian Любисток

Notes

  • Dandelion's mount, Pegasus, is a gelding.
  • Dandelion's original Polish name, "Jaskier", literally means "Buttercup", but was changed in the English translation because "Buttercup" sounded too feminine in English.
  • In the Czech translation of the books and the game, Dandelion's name is "Marigold" and Triss Merigold is called "Triss Ranuncul".
  • In the second and third game all the journal entries and characters' descriptions are written by Dandelion.
  • In The Witcher 2, Dandelion is shown with either lipstick or a hickey on his neck.
  • He appears in The Hexer film and, in The Hexer TV series, he appears in 7 episodes (Smok, Okruch lodu, Dolina Kwiatów, Mniejsze zło, Jaskier, Falwick, Ciri).

Gallery

References

  1. Thronebreaker: The Witcher Tales
  2. based on him being 38 during The Tower of the Swallow (which was set in 1267).
  3. Season of Storms
  4. The Tower of the Swallow
  5. The Last Wish

External links

  • Gwent icon See the GWENT standalone game version card: Dandelion
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