What Exactly Is Wrong With King Viserys? (It’s Not Greyscale)

It’s not Greyscale, whatever illness King Viserys I Targaryen may be suffering from in “House of the Dragon.” However, Viserys’ strange illness might result in early death, precisely like the deadly skin condition that was initially depicted in Game of Thrones. The Westerosi history of House Targaryen, including Viserys I’s whole reign, is outlined in the book “Fire & Blood” of George R. R. Martin’s Song of Ice and Fire series. However, Viserys I never experienced any of these ailments or diseases in the book.

That being said, Viserys I cuts himself in a similar manner in “Fire & Blood,” which takes place in the novel during his final years of life, much as he did in the opening scene in House of the Dragon.” Additionally, in “Fire and Blood,” Viserys I gives the order to cut out tongues before slicing his hand to the bone on the Iron Throne, just as he did in “House of the Dragon” when he threatened to have Daemon’s tongue removed before he cut himself. Even though Viserys I didn’t have an illness in the novel, he injures himself considerably more badly and is also much older at the time than he is in the “House of the Dragon” chronology, when the Iron Throne merely slightly nicks his finger while he is relatively younger. The tragedy marked the beginning of the king’s reign’s demise in “Fire & Blood.”

The mysterious “House of the Dragon” sickness that causes flesh to decay isn’t explained in “Fire & Blood,” but it has aspects that hint at King Viserys I Targaryen’s imminent demise. Although “Fire & Blood” provides no official explanation for what the illness is, the fact that it seems to be caused by diseases acquired from the throne’s swords itself suggests something like sepsis or tetanus – and potentially a result of the most contentious Targaryen tradition: incest. Viserys I do indeed exhibit severe hemophilia, a rare and largely genetically inherited illness in which the blood is unable to clot and repair wounds, and its symptoms are comparable to those of severe hemophilia. Hemophilia is also known as the “royal illness” because it affected the most notable incestuous European royal families from the 19th century, despite not being a direct result of incest. This explanation would explain what is wrong with King Viserys and also provide an explanation that uses real historical context—which the series frequently draws from when establishing Westeros and those within it—despite the fact that there are no known records of the incestuous noble houses of Westeros suffering from such a disease.

In the book, how and when does King Viserys pass away?

At the conclusion of the chapter “Heirs of the Dragon,” roughly halfway through the book, King Viserys I Targaryen passed away in his sleep shortly after losing his two fingers as a result of the cut. The six chapters under “The Dying of the Dragons” that follow describe the infamous Dance of the Dragons, which served as the basis for the first season of the television series “House of the Dragon.” After Viserys I passed away, Queen Alicent Hightower forbade anybody from caring for the king’s body, including quiet sisters and septons, causing it to bloat and fester. In accordance with House Targaryen custom, King Viserys Targaryen, the First of His Name, was ultimately laid to rest and burned a week later. Viserys I’s flesh-rotting condition in “House of the Dragon” could have also been a hint at the horrifying fate that awaits his corpse, it has been speculated.

Based on how Viserys I cut himself in “Fire and Blood,” “House of the Dragon” gave him an enigmatic sickness, which is a symbol of how the pacifist king is actually unsuited to rule Westeros. Viserys’ back wound and the smaller wound on his finger were both brought on by direct touch with the Iron Throne, and the sickness that resulted suggests that the throne is rejecting Viserys I as its king. Viserys I might be in for an even worse destiny in the “House of the Dragon” because the disease doesn’t appear to be curable.

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