Princess Rhaenyra and dragon in House of the Dragon

Here’s Every Major Character in ‘House of the Dragon,’ So You Can Keep Track of Who’s Who

Season 1 of HBO’s House of the Dragon went out with a bang. Several characters bit the dust, Rhaenyra’s out for revenge, and Westeros now has two Targaryen royals claiming a right to the Iron Throne. But with all those silver-haired Targaryens running around, you might need an occasional reminder of who’s who! Don’t worry, we got you. Here’s a guide to all the major characters in House of the Dragon, in rough order of appearance.

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Set about 200 years before the events of Game of Thrones, House of the Dragon tells the story of Rhaenyra Targaryen, a dragonrider who’s named heir to the Iron Throne. However, Rhaenyra has to fend off other ambitious would-be heirs if she wants to rule. Although the series isn’t adapted from a single book by George R. R. Martin, it takes elements from his works Fire & Blood, The Princess and the Queen, and The Rogue Prince.

King Viserys Targaryen (Paddy Considine)

A picture of Paddy Considine in House of the Dragon in the role of King Viserys I

Instead of coming to the throne through direct descent or a bloody takeover, Viserys was chosen to rule by a council of the lords of Westeros. Viserys only wants the best for his kingdom and his family, but although he has a good heart, he’s prone to strategic blunders, and he’s forced to watch House Targaryen dissolve into infighting around him. He also deals with a mysterious wasting disease.

Rhaenys Targaryen (Eve Best)

A picture of Princess Rhaenys Targaryen, played by Eve Best, leaning against a door in House of the Dragon

“The queen that never was,” Rhaenys was passed over for the throne despite being her father’s firstborn child, and was then married off to Corlys Velaryon. She advises Rhaenyra when Rhaenyra is a child, and later becomes one of her allies.

Rhaenyra Targaryen (child: Milly Alcock; adult: Emma D’Arcy)

Rhaenyra Targaryen in final shot of 'House of the Dragon'

Rhaenyra Targaryen, King Viserys’s oldest child, rides the dragon Syrax. Although women traditionally don’t inherit the throne, Viserys risks discord by passing over his brother Daemon (Matt Smith) and naming Rhaenyra heir anyway. The seeds of civil war are planted when Viserys marries Rhaenyra’s best friend Alicent, who gives birth to a son. Rhaenyra originally marries Laenor Velaryon, but later marries Daemon.

Daemon Targaryen (Matt Smith)

Daemon Targaryen in House of the Dragon

Daemon is King Viserys’s younger brother and Rhaenyra’s uncle. Ambitious, scheming, and hotheaded, Daemon resents being passed over for the throne, but later becomes Rhaenyra’s ally, and then husband.

Alicent Hightower (child: Emily Carey; adult: Olivia Cooke)

A picture of Olivia Cooke as Alicent Hightower in Episode 8 of House of the Dragon

Alicent is the daughter of Otto, Hand to the King. She and Rhaenyra start the series as inseparable friends, but when King Viserys chooses Alicent as his new queen, a rift opens up between her and Rhaenyra that eventually culminates in the civil war known as the Dance of the Dragons.

Otto Hightower (Rhys Ifans)

Otto Hightower from House of the Dragon.

Otto Hightower, Alicent’s father, serves as Viserys’s Hand to the King. Otto sees the ambitious Prince Daemon as a threat to the kingdom, and maneuvers Alicent into position to become Queen.

Lord Corlys Velaryon, “the Sea Snake” (Steve Toussaint)

Steve Toussaint as Lord Corlys Velaryon, aka The Sea Snake, the richest man in Westeros.

Lord Corlys is a seasoned sailor and explorer who has built up a formidable navy and made his house even richer than House Lannister.

Ser Criston Cole (Fabien Frankel)

Ser Criston Cole from House of the Dragon.

Ser Criston impresses Rhaenyra by beating Daemon in a joust, and she later names him to the Kingsguard.

Laenor Velaryon (child: Theo Nate; adult: John Macmillan)

Laenor Velaryon from House of the Dragon.

Laenor marries Rhaenyra, but the two privately agree that the marriage will be in name only.

Laena Velaryon (child: Nova Mosé-Foueillis and Savannah Steyn; adult: Nanna Blondell)

Laena Velaryon from House of the Dragon.

Laena is Laenor’s sister, and she eventually marries Daemon.

Aegon Targaryen (child: Ty Tennant; adult: Tom Glynn-Carney)

Aegon II Targaryen after his coronation in the Dragonpit in Episode 9 of House of the Dragon

Aegon is Alicent’s firstborn son with King Viserys, and Rhaenyra’s half-brother. Many consider Aegon to be the legitimate heir to the Iron Throne since he’s Viserys’s oldest male child, and at the end of the season, Aegon rules Westeros despite Rhaenyra’s claim to the throne.

Helaena Targaryen (child: Evie Allen; adult: Phia Saban)

Helaena Targaryen from House of the Dragon

Helaena is Alicent’s daughter, and Aegon’s younger sister and wife.

Aemond Targaryen (child: Leo Ashton; adult: Ewan Mitchell)

Aemond Targaryen realises that he just brought a whole lot of troubles on his family on House of the Dragon

Viserys and Alicent’s third child, after Aegon and their sister Helaena. Aemond loses his eye to Rhaenyra’s son Lucerys, and the two have an epic showdown in the season finale.

Jacerys Velaryon (child: Leo Hart, teenager: Harry Collett)

Jacerys Velaryon from House of the Dragon.

Rhaenyra’s oldest son and rightful heir to the throne, Jacerys has noticed that he and his brother Lucerys don’t look much like their father.

Lycerys Velaryon (child: Harvey Sadler, teenager: Elliot Grihault)

Lucerys Velaryon from House of the Dragon

Lucerys is Rhaenyra’s younger son and Jacerys’s brother. He accidentally puts out Aemond’s eye, earning Aemond’s wrath.

(featured image: HBO)

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Julia Glassman
Julia Glassman (she/her) holds an MFA from the Iowa Writers' Workshop, and has been covering feminism and media since 2007. As a staff writer for The Mary Sue, Julia covers Marvel movies, folk horror, sci fi and fantasy, film and TV, comics, and all things witchy. Under the pen name Asa West, she's the author of the popular zine 'Five Principles of Green Witchcraft' (Gods & Radicals Press). You can check out more of her writing at <a href=""></a>