Game of Thrones Season 8: Is Jon Snow related to the Mother of Dragons Daenerys Targaryen?

Kit Harington and Emilia Clarke in Game of Thrones
Game of Thrones Season 8: How are Jon Snow and Daenerys related? Pic credit: HBO

One of the big revelations in the Game of Thrones Season 7 finale was the secret identity of Kit Harrington’s Jon Snow. We get the first hint of the truth about Snow’s origins in the Season 6 finale flashback sequence in which Lyanna revealed to Ned Stark that her baby was the son of Prince Rhaegar Targaryen who was killed with his father the Mad King during the war of Robert’s Rebellion.

Ned took the boy under his wing and kept his identity a secret to protect him from the Baratheons, who were then looking to secure their own dynasty.

In the Season 7 finale, Bran’s revelation that Snow was Lyanna’s son with Rhaeger should be shocking in view of the sexual encounter between Jon and Daenerys in the Season 7 finale. But many fans were probably not too shocked after the incestuous relationship between the Lannister twins Jamie and Cersei earlier in the series.

Daenerys is Jon Snow’s aunt

Bran revealed in Game of Thrones Season 7 finale that Jon Snow is actually the son of Prince Rhaegar Targaryen and his wife Lyanna Stark.

Rhaegar is the elder brother of Daenerys and Viserys, who died gruesomely at the hands of Daenerys’ late husband, the Dothraki warlord Khal Drogo.

The shocking implication is that Daenerys is Snow’s aunt although she was born near the end of the war of Robert’s Rebellion and only very shortly before Snow was born.

Lyanna Stark was the daughter of Lord Richard Stark. Her siblings were Brandon, Eddard, and Benjen Stark. She was supposedly kidnapped and raped by Rhaegar. The allegation that Rhaegar kidnapped and raped Lyanna was one of the issues that led to the war of Robert’s Rebellion.

Robert’s Rebellion, which brought about the end of the Targaryen dynasty, broke out after the Mad King (Aerys II) executed Richard Stark and his son Brandon.

But despite allegations that Rhaeger kidnapped and raped her, Lyanna and Rhaeger had actually been in love with each other. They went into hiding together and had a secret marriage.

The war of Robert’s Rebellion ended with the death of the Mad King and his heir Rhaegar, and the establishment of the Baratheon dynasty of kings when Robert Baratheon ascended the Iron Throne.

Viserys and Daenerys Targaryen fled to Essos after the war.

However, Lyanna had conceived a son with Rhaeger before he died in the war of Robert’s Rebellion. The boy’s name was Aegon Targaryen, but he was raised by Eddard (Ned) Stark as his bastard son Jon Snow.

The secret marriage between Rhaeger and Lyanna legitimizes Snow’s statues as a Targaryen and the only living child of Rheager, the heir to the Iron Throne.

Snow’s identity as a Targaryen was kept a secret to protect him from the Baratheons, who wanted to eliminate all potential Targaryen claimants to the Iron Throne.

Jon Snow has played a key role in the Game of Thrones series so far and he is set to take central stage in the final battle against the Night King.

Snow has come a long way since the beginning when everyone looked down on him and some even reviled him as Ned Stark’s bastard. But he persevered and joined the Night’s Watch.

Bravery, patience, steadfastness, and an even-tempered disposition were positive qualities in his favor as he climbed up the ranks of the Night Watch to eventually become the Lord Commander.

And now, as the final confrontation approaches, he is one of the favorites to occupy the Iron Throne.

Game of Thrones Season 8 premieres Sunday, April 14 at 9/8c on HBO. 

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