The sigil of House Blackfyre from Game of Thrones.
Based on George R.R. Martin’s famous series of novels (collectively known as “A Song of Ice and Fire”), the television series “Game of Thrones” first premiered in 2011 on the channel HBO. It is set in a fantasy world heavily based on the society and culture of the European Middle Ages. Two primary continents, known as Westeros and Essos, make up the bulk of the visible landmass in this world, with the former being featured in storylines much more frequently. While typical elements from fantasy stories, such as dragons and various forms of magic, are seen throughout the series, in the long run these generally take a backseat to the military conflicts, political machinations and family dynamics that are the principle focus of the story.
The continent of Westeros is made up of many different regions, each of which has its own culture and history. Most of these regions form constituent parts of a single political realm, which is presided over by a ruling monarch. While the monarch holds ultimate power over the realm, local governance of each region is handled by a “Great House”, a noble family whose members answer directly to the sovereign. By the time the series begins, there are also a number of these Houses that no longer have any surviving members. This could be due to any number of factors, depending on the specific history or backstory involved. In any case, such Houses are labeled “Extinct Houses” and typically play very little, if any, role in the series beyond a passing mention as part of a specific storyline.
One of these Extinct Houses is known as House Blackfyre, whose founding member, Daemon Blackfyre, was an illegitimate son of King Aegon IV Targaryen. The Targaryen dynasty ruled Westeros for nearly three hundred years prior to the series’ beginning, and their sigil consisted of a three-headed red dragon on a field of black (for full details, see the symbol for ‘House Targaryen’). As an illegitimate or bastard offshoot of the main House, the Blackfyre sigil consists of the same imagery as its parent House but with the primary coloring reversed, hence a three-headed black dragon on a red field. While mention of House Blackfyre in the TV series is virtually non-existent, there is some backstory in George R.R. Martin’s original novels, where the House is famous for their repeated but ultimately unsuccessful attempts to overthrow the ruling Targaryen dynasty.
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