With House Of The Dragon Season 2 On Air, Here’s All The 8 Great Families Of HOTD You Need To Know About
With House Of The Dragon Season 2 On Air, Here’s All The 8 Great Families Of HOTD You Need To Know About (Photo Credit –Instagram)

When Game of Thrones first came out, it was quite hard to keep track of the several noble houses, let alone remember the names of each character. Now with its spin-off House of the Dragon, viewers are scratching their heads as they have to spin their minds again and understand the landscape of HOTD’s timeline which is set 200 years earlier than the storyline of Game of Thrones.

GOT’s fantasy universe was based on the novel by George R.R. Martin, A Song of Ice & Fire, and followed a complex political world ruled by monarchs and specific regions managed by vassal lords. Although GOT introduced audiences to most of the prominent noble families in Westeros, House of the Dragon has presented a different political landscape. The first season of HOTD set the stage for a battle between the Greens and Blacks, a war of thrones between Rhaenyra Targaryen and Aegon II Targaryen. But in the second season, the plot has incorporated more houses, calling for a guide to all the families in the spin-off series. Let’s have a look at the noble houses for a better and clearer understanding of the show.

House Targaryen

Known for their dragons, House Targaryen came to Westeros from Dragonstone and their history traces back to the ruins of Old Valyria, an empire in Essos destroyed by a cataclysm centuries before House of the Dragon. The Targaryen family was settled on Dragonstone before the destruction. After 130 years before the Dance of the Dragons began, Aegon the Conqueror and his sister-wives flew to Westeros and united the kingdom under his banner, marking the beginning of the Targaryen dynasty which ruled from the newly built capital, King’s Landing.

With King Jaehaerys and King Viserys, the Targaryen rule experienced periods of relative peace, however, the conflict began after Viserys’ heirs sparked the Dance of the Dragons, pitting their house against each other. House of the Dragon cast includes members of House Targaryen on both sides of the conflict, holding claims to the Iron Throne. The Targaryen characters include Daemon, Rhaenys, and Aemond.

House Velaryon

Settled on Driftmark near Dragonstone, House Velaryon is one of the wealthiest and strongest of the Seven Kingdoms. Ruled by Corlys Velaryon, the house comes from Valyria and shares a lineage that includes Dragonriders. Corlys is a renowned explorer and naval leader who built his family into the wealthiest and strongest in the Seven Kingdoms. He is married to Rhaenys Targaryen and share several children and grandchildren. Their son, Laenor married Rhaenyra in the first season and they have three children together (however, Laenor is not the biological father). Their daughter, Laena is married to Daemon and shares two daughters, Baela and Rhaena. In the first season of House of the Dragon, the younger brother of Corlys, Vaemond played a crucial role.

House Hightower

Known as one of the historic houses in Westeros, House Hightower originated from Oldtown and Ser Otto Hightower served as Hand of the King to King Viserys I and King Jaehaerys Targaryen. Their lineage dates back thousands of years. Otto’s daughter, Alicent Hightower, was also a childhood friend of Rhaenyra Targaryen until she was sent by his father to comfort Viserys following his wife’s death. Eventually, Viserys and Alicent got married, making Alicent Rhaenyra’s stepmother.

House Hightower is famously defiant green as Alicent dresses green at Rhaenyra and Laenor Velaryon’s wedding, along with the green Hightower sigil. This is why Aegon’s faction is referred to as the Greens. Aegon is the first-born son of Alicent and King Viserys, making him heir to the throne after Viserys.

House Stark

It all began with The Starks of Winterfell in the Game of Thrones, though they were largely absent in the House of the Dragon season 1. They are shown as the strong allies of the Targaryens after Viserys summons the lords of Westeros to King’s Landing to swear fealty to Rhaenyra as his heir, Lord Rickon Stark pledges his loyalty to her. In season 2, Rickon’s son, Cregan Stark will play as the chief representative for the historic family as the first episode of Season 2 opens with Jacaerys Velaryon’s visit to Winterfell and the Wall. House Stark is also considered as one of the most historic families in the Seven Kingdoms and can be traced back to the First Men.

House Lannister

Game of Thrones largely presented the dynamics of House Stark and House Lannister in the initial seasons. Another prominent family, represented by antagonists like Cersei, Tywin, and Tyrion, the Lannisters are among the houses that attempted to take up arms against Aegon the Conqueror but were fortunate not to be wiped out completely. At the time of House of the Dragon, House Lannister ruled the Westerlands from Casterly Rock and their leader held the title Warden of the West. In the prequel, House Lannister is still quite influential. In Season 1 of HOTD, House Lannister is represented by twin brothers, Jason and Tyland. At the beginning of the Dance of the Dragons, House Lannister sides with the Greens.

House Cole

Although not amongst the prominent families, House Cole is introduced in House of the Dragon by Criston Cole. He is a low-born Dornishman with exceptional skill in battle which earns him a place on the Kingsguard by impressing Rhaenyra Targaryen at a tournament. After defeating Prince Daemon, Cole is elevated to a rank uncommon for a lowborn man. As a knight, Ser Criston Cole breaks his oath by bedding Rhaenyra, however, he turns against her after she decides not to run away with him. Aside from Criston, House Cole isn’t a prominent force and as per George R.R. Martin’s books, he is the only confirmed member of his house.

House Cargyll

A minor family from the Crownlands, House Cargyll’s history is little known aside from the characters in the House of the Dragon. Erryk and Arryk Cargyll play as the twin brothers who are selected to join King Viserys’ Kingsguard in the first season. With the rising tension between the Greens and Blacks, the brothers choose opposite sides; Arryk remains with Aegon II, and Erryk goes to Dragonstone to Rhaenyra. By the time of Game of Thrones, the house is considered extinct.

House Strong

In Game of Thrones, it was revealed that the castle of Harrenhal is cursed and House Strong is one of its many historical inhabitants. The castle’s formidable defenses and strategic location have made it a pivotal stronghold throughout generations, a role it continues to play in House of the Dragon. In season 1, Lord Lyonel Strong briefly holds the position of Hand of the King and serves on King Viserys I’s small council. His son, Ser Harwin Strong, becomes a love interest of Rhaenyra. In the first season, Larys Strong, a notorious schemer is held complicit in the murder of his father and older brother by trapping them in a fire, leading to him inheriting Harrenhal. Subsequently, Larys sides with the Greens in the Dance of the Dragons.

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