Blackfyre

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This article is about the Valyrian steel sword. For the family, see House Blackfyre.
Blackfyre, as depicted by Velvet Engine in The World of Ice and Fire

Blackfyre is the fabled hand-and-a-half longsword of Valyrian steel once wielded by Aegon the Conqueror. It is the most famous of the several Valyrian swords once owned by House Targaryen,[1] and provided the name for House Blackfyre. Another known Valyrian blade owned by the family was Dark Sister, once wielded by Aegon's sister, Visenya.[2]

History

House Targaryen

Aegon the Conqueror and Blackfyre, by Amok©

In the aftermath of Aegon's Conquest, Aegon I Targaryen used Blackfyre to kill Qhorin Volmark.[3] During the First Dornish War, Aegon killed the champion of House Toland with Blackfyre, not knowing it was actually the fool of Ghost Hill.[4]

Blackfyre passed from Targaryen king to king after Aegon's death. Maegor I Targaryen used the blade to behead Grand Maester Gawen and to cut the heart from Tyanna of the Tower. When the realm began to unite against Maegor, Queen Rhaena Targaryen stole the sword for Prince Jaehaerys Targaryen.[5] Aegon II Targaryen's possession of Blackfyre enhanced his legitimacy against his rival, Rhaenyra Targaryen, during the Dance of the Dragons.[6]

Daeron I Targaryen wielded Blackfyre during his conquest of Dorne, and he was eventually killed by Dornishmen with the sword in hand.[7] While it is unknown when Blackfyre was returned to the possession of the Targaryens, it had been returned at least by the reign of King Aegon IV Targaryen. However, as, according to Ser Eustace Osgrey, Blackfyre had been wielded by every Targaryen king since Aegon's Conquest,[8] the sword might have already been returned during the reigns of Baelor I Targaryen or Viserys II Targaryen.

House Blackfyre

Aegon IV Targaryen passes Blackfyre to Daemon Waters. Art by Marc Simonetti, for The World of Ice and Fire.

In 182 AC, King Aegon IV Targaryen chose to bestow Blackfyre on his bastard son Daemon Waters, a born warrior, instead of his scholarly legitimate son, the future Daeron II Targaryen. Daemon, who had been known by the bastard surname Waters until then, took the name "Blackfyre" thereafter, creating House Blackfyre.[9] Some felt that the sword symbolized the monarchy, so the gift was one of the seeds from which rebellion grew.[10]

Daemon I Blackfyre wielded the sword during the First Blackfyre Rebellion in 196 AC, and he fought an epic duel with Ser Gwayne Corbray of the Kingsguard at the Redgrass Field, pitted against Gwayne's own Valyrian blade, Lady Forlorn. Aemon Blackfyre briefly wielded the sword after the Raven's Teeth slew Daemon, but Aemon was also killed in the battle.[8] Daemon's half brother, Aegor Rivers, known as Bittersteel, attempted to rally the rebels with Blackfyre in hand, but Bittersteel withdrew after dueling another half brother, Brynden Rivers, a rival called Bloodraven.[11]

With Daemon and his twin sons dead at the Redgrass Field, Bittersteel took Blackfyre with him in exile to the Free Cities, where he eventually founded the sellsword Golden Company. Aegor refused to give the Valyrian sword to Daemon II Blackfyre in the failed Second Blackfyre Rebellion.[12]

The sword's current whereabouts are unknown.

Quotes

Eustace: Because Daemon was the better man. The old king saw it, too. He gave the sword to Daemon. Blackfyre, the sword of Aegon the Conqueror, the blade that every Targaryen king had wielded since the Conquest ... he put that sword in Daemon's hand the day he knighted him, a boy of twelve.

Egg: My father says that was because Daemon was a swordsman, and Daeron never was. Why give a horse to a man who cannot ride? The sword was not the kingdom, he says.[8]

- Eustace Osgrey and Egg

See also

References and Notes

  1. So Spake Martin: Many Questions, June 13, 2001
  2. The World of Ice & Fire, The Reign of the Dragons: The Conquest.
  3. The World of Ice & Fire, The Iron Islands: The Greyjoys of Pyke.
  4. The World of Ice & Fire, Dorne: Dorne Against the Dragons.
  5. The World of Ice & Fire, The Targaryen Kings: Maegor I.
  6. The Princess and the Queen.
  7. The World of Ice & Fire, The Targaryen Kings: Daeron I.
  8. 8.0 8.1 8.2 The Sworn Sword.
  9. The World of Ice & Fire, The Targaryen Kings: Aegon IV.
  10. So Spake Martin: SF, Targaryens, Valyria, Sansa, Martells, and More (June 26, 2001)
  11. The World of Ice & Fire, The Targaryen Kings: Daeron II.
  12. The Mystery Knight.

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