This design pays homage to HBO’s newest TV drama ‘House of the Dragon’ – set near two centuries before the events of HBO’s ‘Game of Thrones’, House of the Dragon will follow the story and characters of the events of “the Dance of the Dragons”, as told in ‘Fire and Blood’ by George R. R. Martin.
The Dance of the Dragons was fought between Rhaenyra Targaryen, eldest daughter of Viserys I and his declared heir, and her half-brother Aegon II, Viserys’ eldest son to his second wife. Despite Viserys’ choice of heir, succession laws decreed that a son must inherit before a daughter, and thus the throne had two claimants – Rhaenyra’s blacks and Aegon’s greens. The Dance proved to be a brutal conflict. Not because of the armies and fleets and mercenaries that each claimant raised – although they certainly helped, but because of the Targaryen Dragons. It was the dragons’ fighting dragons that defined the conflict, and how it is commemorated in this design. Two dragons, one black and one green for each of the factions, at each other’s throats.
This story is one taken from history. ‘The Anarchy’ in England and Normandy saw that kingdom tear itself apart too over the issue of succession. When William Adelin, only heir to Henry I died an accidental death in 1120, he had declared that his daughter Matilda should succeed him. Unfortunately, this contradicted Norman succession laws, so when the old king died in 1138, his nephew Stephen of Blois seized the throne instead. While the House of Normandy did not have dragons, the claimants and their respective backers did more than enough damage to England and Normandy on their own, and neither would survive the war.
The design is based upon the art styles used by the medieval peoples of Scandinavia. It is loosely based upon Ringerike Style, which lasted from 1000 – 1075 AD. While Scandinavia played no immediate role in the anarchy, Scandinavia is deeply entwined in the history of England. The existence of the House of Normandy owes itself to Viking raiders, as does the existence of many other English and Norman houses. And it certainly was not a one-way relationship either, Ringerike style was heavily influenced by the insular styles created in monasteries across Britain and Ireland. Despite its foreign origins, it seems a fitting way to represent a conflict inspired by one which helped make those islands what they are today. It also looks cool.
Guest Artist and Author:
Iain Donnelly is an amateur artist and university student, studying life sciences at the University of Toronto. When he isn’t studying or doing commissions he plays hurling and Gaelic football, skis during the winter, and enjoys photography, reading and baking.
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