Will Balerion appear in 'House of the Dragon'? Here's all about the greatest Targaryen dragon to have lived

Will Balerion appear in 'House of the Dragon'? Here's all about the greatest Targaryen dragon to have lived
A still from 'House of the Dragon' (HBO)

Dragons, deceit, and drama -- fans certainly have a lot to look forward to with the upcoming 'House of the Dragon' series. Based on George RR Martin's 'Fire & Blood' the show is set 200 years before the events of 'Game of Thrones' and tells the story of House Targaryen, the former rulers of the seven kingdoms.

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If you've been a long-time fan of the series, then the name 'Balerion' certainly isn't an unfamiliar one, seeing that all through the series, the dragon is referenced constantly. Viserys was the first to mention the mighty dragon back in Season 1 of the show when he is sharing a bath with Doreah in Vaes Dothrak. Viserys notes that it was Balerion the Dread "whose fire forged the Seven Kingdoms into one." Although we don't get to see Balerion in any flashbacks, his skull is seen time and again in the Red Keep. By the skull alone, it is clear as day that Balerion has far larger than Drogon, Daenerys' fiercest and largest dragon. So who did Balerion belong to and how did the dragon come to be known as Balerion the Dread? Continue reading to find out.

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Who is Balerion?

As per 'A Song of Fire and Ice' lore, Balerion, known as Balerion the Dread or the Black Dread was the dragon that belonged to House Targaryen and was ridden by Aegon I Targaryen his first rider. Balerion had more than one Targaryen rider, seeing that King Maegor I Targaryen, Princess Aerea Targaryen, and Prince Viserys Targaryen also rode the dragon. Balerion was born in Valyria and was one of the five dragons Aenar Targaryen brought with him when he fled to Dragonstone and was named after an ancient god of the Valyrian Freehold.

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Often regarded as the largest dragon, Balerion had black scales, much like his fire, which was also black. The dragon's wingspan was large enough to engulf entire towns with his mere shadow while his jaw was large enough to swallow a mammoth whole. With Aegon being his first rider, Balerion also helped forged the Iron Throne. As per the lore, Balerion was the greatest Targaryen dragon and the driving force behind Aegon's conquest being a success -- the dragon even melted the swords of Aegon's enemies that are seen on the throne. Balerion is said to have died at the age of 200, during the reign of King Jaehaerys I Targaryen. Jaehaerys I, however, did not ride Balerion. Instead, he rode Vermithor, one of the largest dragons after Balerion.

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Will Balerion be featured in ‘House of the Dragon’?

With 'House of the Dragon’ being set in a timeline after Aegon's Conquest, it takes place in 100AC, marking King Jaehaerys I's death and the rise of King Viserys I, as he takes to the throne. Unfortunately, Balerion dies in 94AC and even though Viserys was his last rider, it is unlikely fans will get to see Balerion. However, should there be flashbacks, there is a good chance that fans might witness the Black Dread in action. We have our fingers crossed. 

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A still from 'House of the Dragon' (HBO)
A still from 'House of the Dragon' (HBO)

‘House of the Dragon’ premieres exclusively on HBO and HBO Max on Sunday, August 21.

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