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House of the Dragon: How Will King Viserys I Die?

By Rishabh Shandilya
September 4,2022

Following the disappointing conclusion to “Game of Thrones,” the opening two episodes of HBO’s latest spin-off miniseries “House of the Dragon” have restored the fan’s faith in the franchise. The story centers on the Targaryen Household who has been ruling the lands of Westeros for centuries thanks to their fire-breathing dragons who strike fear into the hearts of those who dare oppose them.

Jaehaerys Fell ill and Viserys Succeeded Him

King Jaehaerys

King Jaehaerys Choosing his Heir

Once King Jaehaerys became ill, he stated that his son, King Viserys I Targaryen, would succeed to the crown. Viserys and Queen Aemma were atop the royal hierarchy. Despite the fact that the Queen bore Princess Rhaenyra in 97 AC, the pair hasn’t stopped trying to conceive a male so that Viserys may declare his kid successor to the kingdom.

The Queen endured several losses until she finally gave birth to a healthy baby boy, Baelon, and she tragically passed away shortly after. Unfortunately, shortly after his mother passed away, the boy also kicked the bucket, leaving Rhaenyra as his lone surviving offspring. Now that he has named Rhaenyra his successor, tensions are running high as each family plots to marry off their daughter to the King in order to gain goodwill with the king and secure a position of power in the kingdom.

King Viserys and Rhaenyra

King Viserys and Rhaenyra

It’s no secret that the House of The Dragon will explore the famous Dance of the Dragons, in which Princess Rhaenyra Targaryen as well as Prince Aegon II Targaryen, who both believe themselves to be the legitimate successor to the Iron Throne, engage in a brutal civil war. Targaryen power and dragon numbers both drop following the War. As a result of King Viserys I Targaryen’s untimely demise, a bloody battle ensues, setting in a series of events that would be pivotal to the first season of HOD.

But How Did King Viserys Dies? Let’s find out.

At Last! It Was His Own Throne That Killed Him

King Viserys I

King Viserys I on the Iron Throne

According to George R. R. Martin’s A Song of Ice and Fire novels and novelettes, Viserys was raised in King’s Landing in the year 77 AC. His rule is well recorded and spans the years 103–129 A.C.

If we pursue historical accounts, the realm was in a state of upheaval during his final year in power. Lady Alicent Hightower, his spouse, as well as Princess Rhaenyra Targaryen, his only surviving offspring from his first wife Queen Aemma, began to hate one another and ensured that all of the slaves and other beings in the kingdom did as they commanded. Back in 127 AC, King Viserys fell from the Iron Throne and severely injured his arm.

Lady Alicent hightower

Lady Alicent hightower

Unfortunately for the king, Grand Maester Mellos’ healing efforts were fruitless. There was concern that Viserys might not make it through his high fever brought on by an illness. Maester Gerardys amputated two of his fingers, and only then did he begin to feel better. It was then that Viserys made up his mind he would never again occupy the throne.

Viserys Eventually Wanted Rhaenyra to Succeed Him

If the series stays true to the literature, Viserys will pass away peacefully in his slumber in the year 129 AC. He was 52 years old when he died, and for seven days, no one in Westeros knew about his demise. This goes against the desires of the late King, who intended Rhaenyra to succeed him on the Iron Throne.

Alicent bans anybody from handling Viserys’ corpse, so it rots horribly as the little council bargains the complicated political position. Ultimately, news of his death was shared with the world, and his corpse was incinerated in accordance with Targaryen’s custom by being burned with dragon breath.

Dragonstone

Dragonstone in House of the Dragon

At the same time, Rhaenyra learns of her father’s death at Dragonstone and flatly rejects Aegon’s pretension to become the Lord of the seven kingdoms, Alicent, has a network of followers in King’s Landing called the Greens. However, Rhaenyra builds her own army of followers who support honoring Viserys’ decree.

House of the Dragon, however, appears to be heading towards a more gruesome end for Viserys. Provided the sleaziness of the politics, “House of the Dragon” can add some spice by having Viserys die a more horrible end. Perhaps a dragon would set him on fire, or perhaps somebody will poison him. The fate of House Targaryen is uncertain, but killing Viserys may be the turning point in the series.