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New Targaryen Relic Debuts in 'House of the Dragon,' Fans Obsessed

New Targaryen Relic Debuts in ‘House of the Dragon,’ Fans Obsessed

House of the Dragon just showcased an unprecedented asset of House Targaryen: a complete suit of Valyrian steel armor. This armor is entirely new for the show and Game of Thrones universe and hasn’t been featured in the books, including companion literature that explores Westeros’ rich history. Still, fans aren’t entirely surprised by this suit, and many are thrilled by its reveal.

Midway through House of the Dragon Season 2, Episode 3, Aegon II Targaryen (Tom Glynn-Carney) dons this Valyrian steel armor with the help of a few servants and some new, less experienced Kingsguard knights. Planning to ride his dragon Sunfyre into battle against the advice of his small council, Aegon attempts to convince himself of his own formidable nature, stating, “I’m as fearsome as any of them.” When Master of Whisperers Larys Strong (Matthew Needham) comments on the armor, Aegon replies, “I was given the conqueror’s name and his crown, so I shall wear his armor to war.”

This moment highlights Aegon II’s attempt to emulate his ancestor, Aegon the Conqueror, by literally dressing the part. However, for fans of the franchise, the existence of this armor brings significant revelations and could impact numerous fan theories. Furthermore, it might even influence the conclusion of George R.R. Martin’s A Song of Ice and Fire series. The creators of House of the Dragon were undoubtedly aware of this when they included the armor in the show.
(Photo: Ollie Upton/HBO)

Valyrian steel is a magical substance frequently seen in Game of Thrones, House of the Dragon, and Martin’s books. Known for its unnatural strength, lightness, and sharpness, Valyrian steel maintains an edge far longer than ordinary swords. It also possesses magical characteristics, such as the ability to kill wights and white walkers and to be set on fire without damage.

The TV series hasn’t explored much about the creation of Valyrian steel, but the books place this mystery front and center. They suggest the steel is forged using blood magic, potentially involving human sacrifice. Some theories indicate this magic allows the steel to retain a will of its own, influenced by either the sacrifice or previous wielders. This implication could be even more complex for a suit of armor compared to a simple sword.

The books illustrate Valyrian steel being used in various applications, including ornamental objects possessed by maesters and one of House Targaryen’s ancestral crowns. Most notably, Euron Greyjoy, Theon’s uncle, has a vast collection of Valyrian steel. The book version of Euron is markedly different from the show’s portrayal, with a keen interest in magic. In A Feast for Crows, Euron shows off Dragonbinder, a horn banded with Valyrian steel and magical glyphs, claiming it can command dragons though such an attempt burns the user alive.

Euron also seems to possess a full suit of Valyrian steel armor, previewed in The Winds of Winter chapter “The Forsaken,” where he wears scaled armor inscribed with glyphs. However, this preview is not yet canon and may have been revised. If included in the final novel, it will be the second Valyrian steel armor seen after Aegon’s.

Aegon the Conqueror having a full suit of Valyrian steel armor is both surprising and fitting. Martin has hinted but never confirmed that Aegon wore “a shirt of black scales,” possibly made of Valyrian steel. Aegon and his sister-wives, Rhaenys and Visenya, were closely linked with Old Valyria, likely possessing secret magical knowledge from that civilization. Their family had ample time to transfer Valyrian treasures to Westeros before the region’s cataclysmic destruction.

The revelation raises questions about the armor’s fate and why it hasn’t appeared in the main story. Some speculate it may have ended up with Euron, who claims to have found it in Valyria—an act supposedly impossible. Alternatively, it could have been sold by later Targaryen rulers, perhaps Aegon IV, “Aegon the Unworthy.”

Should the armor appear in the remaining books, it could serve as a vital MacGuffin. Worn by Daenerys or Jon Snow, the last Targaryen survivors, it might offer practical defense and symbolize their legitimacy. Conversely, it could be used by a pretender seeking false legitimacy. Fans will undoubtedly develop theories post-Episode 3, but only Martin’s completion of his books will reveal the truth.

It’s noteworthy that this addition isn’t arbitrary and that Martin often uses TV shows to drop hints for book fans. House of the Dragon has already established that Aegon I had a prophetic dream about the white walkers, prompting his conquest of the Seven Kingdoms. Moreover, Martin’s history book Fire & Blood contains a story about three stolen dragon eggs, which many believe are the ones Daenerys later hatches.

Such mysteries interconnect various Westeros stories, crucial as more TV spinoffs and books are released. Even Martin’s main series will likely leave some questions unanswered when the last two books are published. House of the Dragon Season 2 continues Sundays at 9 p.m. ET on HBO and Max. Martin’s books are available in print, digital, and audiobook formats.