10 Things Only Book Readers Know About House Targaryen

Dragon House takes place during one of the most powerful periods of House Targaryen. They rule Westeros, have many dragons available, and many acclaimed warriors and politicians in their ranks. It is far from game of thronesin which Daenerys is the latest scion of the House.

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The show looks set to reveal more about House Targaryen, revealing plenty of information from the books that game of thrones did not include. However, even with an additional show to focus on family, it’s unlikely that everything will be covered in the books. As such, there is plenty of information that only those who have read A song of ice and fire and accompanying pieces like The world of ice and fire will know.

ten They were just lesser dragon lords in Valyria

Of the venerable Houses of Westeros, few have had a greater impact on the continent than the Targaryens. Having ruled Westeros for nearly three centuries, it’s easy to assume that they were also of major importance in their original homeland of Valyria. However, they weren’t regal or even particularly powerful there.

Although as Dragonriders they were part of the upper echelons of Valyrian society, they were not a very important family. Instead, their relevance comes from not being caught up in the Doom of Valyria, leaving them as one of the few families with dragons. Therefore, they were able to use this power to dominate Westeros and change the world, like Dragon House shows.

9 They claimed to be immune to disease

Although seemingly human, the Targaryens undeniably have certain things that set them apart from the men and women of Westeros. Besides their unusual appearances, they also possess several minor supernatural powers. One they emphasized in their early years in Westeros was an apparent immunity to disease.

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They were notably not known to suffer from diseases, using this as proof that they were above other humans, and therefore allowed to do things like marry their siblings. Then, a young princess named Daenerys Targaryen fell ill and died in a plague called the Chills, proving that the Targaryens weren’t as supernatural as they claimed.

8 A Targaryen king tried to ban incest

One of the most infamous things about the Targaryens, both in-universe and out, is that they regularly practice interest, marriage siblings, and cousins. It’s an old custom in Valyria that alienates them from many of their people in Westeros, who consider the practice one of the ultimate taboos.

However, the family does not have a full ideological connection with her. Intermarriage began to be abandoned during their tenure as rulers of Westeros, to the point that King Aegon V Targaryen attempted to outlaw it altogether. However, he was unsuccessful, with his son Jaeherys marrying his sister and marrying two of his children together. It happened long after Dragon House when the practice was still common.

seven Prophetic dreams are a known family ability

Several characters in A song of ice and fire having prophetic or seemingly important dreams, hinting at things to come. However, the Targaryen family has a reputation for it in its history, with several members suffering from premonitions of the future. This is how they survived the Doom of Valyria, with the family listening to a premonition and getting as far away as possible.

Apart from the prophecy of the Prince which was promised, this is largely absent from game of thrones. Dragon House has more prophecies in play, including one that foretells the events of the old show, but doesn’t mention how many Targaryens were known to dream about the future.

6 Targaryen pregnancies sometimes end in draconic stillbirths

The exact relationship the Targaryens have with dragons is unknown. Nonetheless, they do have some form of connection to them, with the vast majority of Dragonriders in Westeros history having Targaryen blood and other more minor supernatural gifts. However, there is a darker side to this relationship.

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Occasionally, Targaryen pregnancies end in stillbirth that is not human, instead resembling a reptilian creature form. This doesn’t just happen to female Targaryens, but with pregnancies conceived by a male Targaryen, as with each of Maegor the Cruel’s attempts to produce an heir.

5 Targaryen’s looks aren’t unique in the world

The Targaryens are recognized across the universe as a striking and attractive family, with silver hair, purple eyes, and very fine features. This makes them a distinct rarity in Westeros, a fact they exploited to secure beneficial marriages and set themselves apart from other noble houses.

In Essos, however, this look is more common. Centuries of Valyrian influence over the rest of the continent means that the appearance of silver hair and purple eyes can be found in many parts of Essos. Tyrion Lannister even muses that a Targaryen pretender to the throne could easily be a well-chosen impostor because of this.

4 They ruled the furthest reaches of Valyrian

In the world of game of thrones and Dragon House, the Valyrian Freehold is the greatest empire ever known. It was vast and long lasting, capable of crushing all opposition all the way to the Doom of Valyria. However, it was almost entirely located in Essos, leaving the continent of Westeros largely untouched.

The only Valyrian encroachment on Westeros was a castle on the Isle of Dragonstone, where House Targaryen fled following a premonition about Doom. As such, for the last years of their civilization, they ruled the outermost frontier of their empire, making first contact with the Andals of Westeros. This castle becomes the scene of important events in Dragon House.

3 They Completely Reformed Westeros In A Relatively Short Time

The history of Westeros is long and dates back thousands of years. However, in this era, this has never changed more rapidly than during the reign of Targaryen. Even in addition to ending the constant wars and uniting the Seven Kingdoms into a single entity under the Iron Throne, the Targaryen monarchs changed the continent significantly.

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They banned or reformed many controversial practices such as First Night, ended the Militant Faith, and created vaunted institutions like the Little Council and the Royal Guard. Additionally, they invested in infrastructure, seeing the creation of the Kingsroad, doubling the land available to the Night’s Watch, and creating the most populous city on the continent at King’s Landing. In three hundred years they have done more than other kings in thousands.

2 Their lineage produced at least one Warg

Warging magic seems to be limited to Westeros in Dragon House and game of thrones. He derives from the Children of the Forest, who are not known to have ever set foot in Essos. As the eastern family of Valyrian Freehold, the Targaryens seem steeped in other forms of the supernatural, most notably their dragons.

However, the Targaryen bloodline has produced at least one warg in its three centuries in Westeros. Brynden ‘Bloodraven’ Rivers was one of King Aegon IV Targaryen’s many bastards and had the ability to slip into animal skin. As Master of Whisperers, he used this ability to uncover and stop any plot in Westeros before becoming Lord Commander of the Night’s Watch.

1 They have been the cause of many civil wars

After Aegon the Conqueror united six of the Seven Kingdoms and held a complete monopoly of force with his dragons, many might think that civil wars were rare in Westeros until the events of Dragon House. However, the Targaryens have overseen a surprising number of civil wars in just three centuries.

From Maegor the Cruel’s battles with the Faith Militant and his nephews to the Dance of the Dragons, to the many Blackfyre Rebellions, Westeros has been plagued with conflicts that spanned the entire conflict. Although powerful and influential, the Targaryens were not the most stable royal family.

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Angela C. Hale