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Getting Ready For House of The Dragon – Meet The Dragons : Part 3

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Dragons are scaled, reptilian creatures. They have four limbs: two wings, which are used as forelegs like bats and pterosaurs, and two rear legs. George R. R. Martin’s dragons thereby differ from the traditional depiction of dragons as six-limbed creatures. Martin came to his decision as he was bothered by the fact that no animal in nature has ever evolved in such a way (i.e. four legs and two wings). Nonetheless, some A Song of Ice and Fire artwork shows them with four legs and a detached pair of wings.

Today’s article is a continuation of Wiki of Thrones special ‘Getting Ready For House of The Dragon’ segment. For the next few days, here at Wiki of Thrones, you’ll find information about various dragons that might appear on the prequel series. If we missed your favourite dragon, do not worry, leave a comment below and we’ll cover your beloved beast in the next issue!

Today’s post covers three important dragons from the Dance of The Dragons lore – Syrax, Vermithor and Dreamfyre. They are most certainly to appear in the upcoming prequel.

 

1. Syrax :

Syrax had yellow scales. She was huge and formidable, but not as fearsome or experienced in battle as Caraxes. Syrax was kept in chains and exceedingly well-fed. She had not hunted for years at the time of the civil war.

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Princess Rhaenyra Targaryen was the first and only rider of Syrax. Rhaenyra took Syrax as a mount in 104 AC, when the princess was seven years old. Syrax was described as a young dragon at the time, and Rhaenyra herself named her Syrax (after a Valyrian goddess). Syrax laid several clutches of eggs during the reign of Viserys I. Her latest clutch was produced just prior to the civil war. One of the eggs from that latest clutch was given to Rhaena, Rhaenyra’s step-daughter.

In King’s Landing Syrax lived within the walls of the Red Keep. Heavy chains bound her to the ground. The chains were long enough to allow her to move from the stable to the yard but kept her from flying off riderless.

Syrax died in the aftermath of the Storming of the Dragonpit. Prince Joffrey had attempted to mount her to ride to the Dragonpit, save the other dragons, and perhaps mount his own dragon Tyraxes there. Dragons are not horses, however, and they will only accept one mount at a time. In mid-flight, Syrax shrugged off Joffrey, who fell to his death. Attracted by the bloodshed, Syrax continued on to the Dragonpit.

Syrax could have simply stayed high in the air and made runs at the mob with her flames, but instead, she descended upon the ground, killing dozens with tooth and claw. The mob was too much for her, and the pit was too small, not allowing her much mobility. The angry mob killed the dragon in the Dragonpit.

Syrax is sure to appear on House of The Dragon as Rhaenyra Targaryen’s mount.

 

2. Vermithor :

Vermithor, called the Bronze Fury, was a male dragon once ridden by King Jaehaerys I Targaryen. He was a bronze dragon with great tan wings. Vermithor was already a large dragon in 48 AC; Only Balerion and Vhagar were larger. By the time of the Dance of the Dragons, Vermithor was almost a hundred years old.

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Vermithor after killing Seasmoke during in Second Battle of Tumbleton as depicted by Douglas Wheatley in Fire & Blood.

 

Vermithor was a fearsome beast. Accustomed to men and having had a previous rider, by the reign of Aegon II Targaryen Vermithor was tolerant to the presence of people and more accepting of new riders.

Prince Jaehaerys Targaryen was Vermithor’ first rider by 48 AC, when Jaehaerys made his claim for the Iron Throne. Nine days after the mysterious death of King Maegor I Targaryen, Jaehaerys flew to King’s Landing upon Vermithor to claim the throne.

Vermithor became riderless when Jaehaerys died in 103 AC. Throughout the reign of Jaehaerys’s successor, King Viserys I Targaryen, Vermithor had no new rider. During this time, Vermithor remained on the island of Dragonstone and made his lair in one of the smoking caverns of the Dragonmont. During the Dance of the Dragons, Vermithor and Silverwing were said to often coil about one another in the fields.

In 129 AC, after the start of the Dance of the Dragons, Prince Jacaerys Velaryon decided that his mother’s faction needed more Dragonriders. Many men attempted to claim a dragon of their own; Lord Gormon Massey attempted to approach Vermithor, who burned him to death. Eventually, Vermithor bent his neck to a blacksmith’s bastard called Hugh Hammer. Hugh rode Vermithor to battle in the Battle in the Gullet. Along with Silverwing, Sheepstealer, Vermax and Seasmoke, Vermithor descended upon the ninety warships sailing under the banners of the Three Daughters.

Hugh rode Vermithor into battle during the first battle at Tumbleton. Hugh and fellow dragonseed Ulf the White, who had claimed Silverwing, changed their allegiance, betraying Rhaenyra in favour of Aegon II Targaryen. Vermithor, Silverwing and Tessarion, the dragon of Aegon II’s brother Prince Daeron, let loose their flames upon Tumbleton, which was savagely sacked.

During the Second Battle of Tumbleton, an army of four thousand men strong, led by Addam Velaryon upon the dragon Seasmoke, surprised the Hightower host at Tumbleton with their night-time attack. Hugh rushed to mount Vermithor but was killed by Jon Roxton of the Caltrops. Vermithor, now riderless, was still half-asleep and on the ground when two score knights attempted to slay him. They died in their attempt. Wounded and enraged, Vermithor took flight, attacking all those around him.

While Vermithor was only twenty feet above the field, Seasmoke slammed into him from above. The two dragons rolled over the field, so entangled that neither was able to break free. Seasmoke was no match for Vermithor on account of the older dragon’s size and weight. Vermithor would have torn Seasmoke into pieces if Tessarion had not entered the fight. The three dragons fought to the death. Vermithor killed Seasmoke when he locked his teeth into the latter’s neck and ripped his head off. He attempted to take flight with his head still in his jaws but his wings were tattered, causing him to be unable to bear the weight. After a moment he collapsed and died. Vermithor and Seasmoke’s remains became a tourist attraction at the rebuilt Tumbleton.

Vermithor will play a key role in House of The Dragon, and hence is sure to appear.

 

3. Dreamfyre :

Dreamfyre was a she-dragon, ridden by Princess Rhaena Targaryen and later by Princess Helaena Targaryen. Her coloration was primarily pale blue, with silver markings. She had silver crests and pale blue wings. By 35 AC, Dreamfyre was large enough for the twelve-year-old Rhaena Targaryen to mount her.

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Dreamfyre and Rhaena Targaryen, by Samantha Altarozzi

 

Dreamfyre was hatched during the reign of King Aegon I Targaryen. As a hatchling, she bonded with nine-year-old Princess Rhaena Targaryen, Aegon I’s first grandchild, in 32 AC. Three years later, she became Dreamfyre’s rider. In 41 AC Rhaena was wed to her brother, Aegon, and sent on a royal progress by their father King Aenys I Targaryen. Rhaena wished to take Dreamfyre with her, but her father forbade it, as Aegon had not yet claimed a dragon, and the king did not want his son to be seen riding a horse, while his wife rode a dragon. Dreamfyre remained in King’s Landing.

King Aenys, died in 42 AC and the crown was usurped by their uncle, Maegor. Rhaena and her husband smuggled themselves into King’s Landing in 43 AC, while Maegor was at Oldtown. Rhaena was reunited with Dreamfyre and Aegon finally claimed a dragon of his own, his father’s dragon Quicksilver. Knowing they could not hold the Iron Throne, they left King’s Landing on their dragons to raise an army. When Aegon went to war against their uncle, Rhaena and Dreamfyre did not accompany them. Since Dreamfyre was younger and smaller than Quicksilver, she would not have been much of a threat to the Black Dread.

By 43 AC, Dreamfyre had already produced two clutches of dragon eggs. During Rhaena’s second residence at Fair Isle in 49–50 AC, Dreamfyre laid another clutch of eggs. In 51 AC Rhaena visited King’s Landing upon Dreamfyre to attend the second wedding of her siblings King Jaehaerys and Queen Alysanne. Rhaena was eventually granted Dragonstone as her own seat. Dreamfyre made her lair in the dragon yards at Dragonstone, and the clutch of eggs laid at Fair Isle soon hatched. Rhaena introduced her daughter, Princess Aerea, to Dreamfyre’s hatchlings, and urged her to choose one and fly.

Rhaena went into self-imposed isolation at Harrenhal after her daughter’s death. Although she still frequently rode Dreamfyre, she wished to be left alone. Dreamfyre remained at Harrenhal with Rhaena until she died in 73 AC, after which Dreamfyre made her lair in the Dragonpit at King’s Landing.

During the reign of King Viserys I Targaryen, Dreamfyre bonded with Princess Helaena Targaryen. Helaena was riding Dreamfyre by age eleven, and the dragon was beloved to her. During the Dance of the Dragons, after Helaena’s six-year-old son was slain during the civil war, Helaena spent her days in darkness, weeping, and was not capable of riding Dreamfyre anymore. Dreamfyre resided in the Dragonpit, and it is said that when Helaena threw herself to her death from her window in Maegor’s Holdfast, Dreamfyre rose suddenly with a roar that shook the Dragonpit and snapped two of the chains that bound her.

Dreamfyre remained chained in the Dragonpit when the people of King’s Landing stormed the pit. Out of the four dragons present, Dreamfyre was the only dragon able to break free of her chains when the mob broke in. She took wing, circled the cavernous interior of the dome and swooped down to attack the men below. She slew more men than the other three dragons combined. Archers and crossbowmen loosed arrows and quarrels at her, and whenever she landed men swarmed her to attack, driving her back into the air. Eventually, one of her eyes was pierced by a crossbow bolt. Half-blind and maddened, Dreamfyre flew into the Dragonpit’s great dome above, which cracked on impact. Half of it came tumbling down, crushing her and the dragonslayers under tons of broken stone and rubble.

Dreamfyre might appear on House of The Dragon as Helaena Targaryen’s mount.

Which other dragons do you think should appear on House of The Dragon? Tell us about your favourite beasts in the comments below!

 

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