Via A Wiki of Ice and Fire.
So, I recently picked up A Clash of Kings, figuring that after like two or three years, it would be a pretty good time to start progressing through the series. At the same time, I started reading stuff and things on the ASoIaF wiki, including the page about Randyll Tarly, the father of Samwell of the Night's Watch. Well, that reminded me of a thought I had had while reading A Game of Thrones and Tarly's treatment of his son. For those who haven't read the books or might not otherwise remember, Randyll Tarly despised his son because he basically wasn't Ron fucking Swanson and when his wife gave birth to a son who was more to his liking, he forced Samwell to take the black and join the Night's Watch. If he hadn't, Randyll would have arranged an unfortunate "accident" for his eldest son.
|via Game of Thrones wiki.|
I don't think he'll be winning Father of the Year anytime soon. Back then, I thought it was odd that Randyll had forced his son to take the black, as opposed to sending him to Oldtown to become a Maester*. One of Sam's rather "displeasing" (to his father) was his love of books, which to me, marks him out as a good candidate and it would have served the same purpose as sending him North to the Watch - Sam would have had to forfeit any claim he would have had to his father's lands or any inheritance whatsoever. Then it hit me: That's exactly why he sent Sam to The Wall. If he had sent him to the Maesters, then Sam might have grown up happy and Randyll Tarly so despised Sam that he didn't want his son to be happy.
If that doesn't make him a dick, I don't what will.
*I know he does eventually go to Oldtown to become a Maester.