The Witcher has many mysteries, including Geralt’s mother leaving his son. But why?
The popularity of any tv show brings in a massive fandom with creative minds, generating many topics of discussion and theories. You can go to any forum site and find a bunch of fans engaged in some discussion about that particular tv show.
One such popular TV show which always generates conversation is Netflix s’ fantasy drama, The Witcher. It has recently become one of the best TV shows, raising the bar of storytelling, casting, and acting to an absolute high.
One of the key highlights of the show is the infinite hidden mysteries it contains, especially around the past of the main character Geralt of Rivia. He could be apathetic, cynical, and threatening, but the persona of Geralt has a gripping backstory to go by.
One mystery that piques interest is around his birth and, more specifically, Geralt’s mother, Visenna, who abandoned and left him with Vesemir.
While some fans may be confused as to why the series doesn’t explain this question, worry not, we got you covered. So, let’s begin the breakdown and look at different theories about why Visenna left Geralt.
HE WAS A CHILD SURPRISE
In The Witcher season 1, episode 8, Geralt is abandoned by his mother, who we know very little of except that she was a druid, healer, and sorceress. The first theory, straight from the show, is that Geralt was a child of surprise and hence was left under the care of Vesemir.
Child of surprise results from the Law of Surprise, first introduced in Episode 4 of the TV show “Of Banquets, Bastards and Burials.” We don’t get much explanation of the law in the episode itself as Queen Calanthe s’ banquet turns into a murderous occasion as she orders everyone to be killed.
According to the official Witcher Wiki, the Law of Surprise states:
“A custom as old as humanity itself is the price a man who saves another can demand. It is a request for something which neither the saviour nor the saved knows the nature of, until the saved man returns home”
The word ‘Surprise’ is interesting to note as the law mentions that the saved and savior are unbeknownst of the request and its consequences. We see the law first invoked by Urcheon of Erlenwald, who asked King Roegner of Cintra for the hand of his daughter Pavetta.
Law of Surprise is connected to the Geralt s’ birth as he could be a price the saved had to pay and a prize the savior received for his actions. In other words, Geralt was a Child of Surprise.
Now the basis of this theory is that Vesemir saved Visenna, and as payment, he asked for Geralt of Rivia through the Law of Surprise. This theory is further evidenced by Vesemir s birth, which the Law of Surprise claimed.
It doesn’t end there, Geralt, after lifting Duny s’ curse, is asked what he would like, and he invokes the Law of Surprise after knowing Pavetta is pregnant with Ciri.
Furthermore, Geralt has always appreciated his guardian Vesemir for teaching him how to become powerful and resiliant. His influence meant that Geralt never had any abandonment issues after being raised by a strong figure like Vesemir.
VISENNA DIDN’T WANT TO RAISE GERALT ALONE
Visenna becomes a widow after his father Korrin (from the short story “A Road with No Return”) leaves her before Geralt is born. As Visenna was a healer and her on-road life would have been a significant hindrance in raising a child. Thus, it is possible she gave away her child to Vesemir outside Of Kaer Morhen.
There is little to no information available on Korrin, who is never even confirmed to be Geralt s’ father. But if we go to the Witcher Wiki, which states that “Korrin was a wanderer, churl, troublemaker, and swashbuckler. While Korin was not present in his life, Geralt believed his father’s genes were more dominant, evidenced by his proficiency at “swashing a buckler.”
This theory may appear less believable, but it can pass in context to story s’ timeline and setting. There is also a foreshadowing similarity between Visenna and Yennefer as they are both wandering sorcerers and healers related in one way or another to Geralt.
VISENNA KNEW GERALT S’ DESTINY AND FATE
The final theory is also linked with Visenna and her profession as a sorcerer. When Geralt was born, Visenna most likely already knew of his fate. She may have foreseen his destiny as a world altering man and decided to leave him with Vesemir.
Geralt s’ was destined to do great things, and it would be difficult for Visenna to raise him all by herself.
When Visenna meets Geralt in his dreams, she heals him and says, “People linked by Destiny will always find each other,” indicating the mother was always supposed to meet his son in the future.
While Geralt isn’t too thrilled to see her birth mother as he keeps asking, “Why did she abandon him.” He also reminds her of how difficult it is to become a Witcher referring to the cat potion used to enhance visual prowess, which is a painful process, and the result, isn’t guaranteed.
Visenna reminds him of his fate as she tells him to move on and find what he let go of in his current life. Seeking answers to painful questions would only hurt them, as we can infer that Visenna was aware of Geralt s’ greatness.
The sorceress’s mother also saw his son s’ future belonging with Ciri and gave him to Vesemir to be trained as a Witcher. Inadvertently, her past actions as a mother do bear fruit as Geralt becomes not only a powerful character but also an adoptive father to Ciri.
It’s a topic open for discussion whether Visenna was a good mother or not but leaving him under the tutelage of Vesemir was indeed the right decision.