Warning: the remainder of this post contains open spoilers concerning the entirety of Game of Thrones.
A fan theory suggests that Game of Thrones‘ Daenerys Targaryen might not be infertile after all — and may be able to have children, despite her belief that a prophecy has doomed her to infertility.
Way back in the first season, Daenerys’ fortunes were drastically changing for the worse. After her husband, Khal Drogo, and his Dothraki pillaged a village, raped its female occupants, and enslaved whomever survived, Drogo had begun to fall ill from an infected wound. Some of the Dothraki were planning to turn on her once Khal Drogo died, and the pregnant Daenerys — and her handlers — knew it. In desperation, Daenerys made a deal with a witch, Mirri Maz Duur, to save her husband’s life.
Unfortunately, the witch double-crossed her, seeking revenge for what the Dothraki did to her and her village. Khal Drogo lived, but only as a vegetable. What’s worse, Daenerys’ baby was stillborn, and the witch prophesied that her punishment was such that she would only be fertile again “when the sun rises in the west and sets in the east, when the seas go dry and mountains blow in the wind like leaves.”
Queen Daenerys Stormborn of the House Targaryen,First of Her Name, the Unburnt, Queen of the Andals and the First Men, Khaleesi of the Great Grass Sea,Breaker of Chains, and Mother of Dragons.— Ice bear need hug. (@frtyueswoj) May 1, 2019
ทรงพระเจริญ #Queen pic.twitter.com/GE955s1Gbs
But The Show Keeps Mentioning Her Fertility
The matter of Khaleesi’s womb was all but forgotten until Season 7, when it became a topic of conversation, twice, in the waning episodes of the season.
In one scene, Daenerys’ Hand, Tyrion, kept trying to force her to have a conversation with him about the line of succession once she assumes the Iron Throne. An exasperated Daenerys shuts Tyrion down. A few scenes later, she was in the sack with Jon Snow.
Meanwhile, she and Jon Snow also spoke of her supposed infertility. She told him in no uncertain terms that she would never have children, and that her dragons were her children. She mentioned that a witch’s dark magic had rendered her infertile, something that Snow wasn’t willing to believe.
So why is the show mentioning her fertility? Are the show’s writers telegraphing the notion that she may be able to bear children after all?
Did She Misinterpret The Witch’s Prophecy?
Going back to the original prophecy, there are two things to keep in mind. First, the witch didn’t actually directly say that Dany would never have children again. The prophecy was about Khal Drogo returning to life, not about her being able to have children. In fact, the witch left the possibility that Khaleesi would be able to have kids again wide open. Check out the prophecy below, noting the usage of the word “when.”
“When the sun rises in the west and sets in the east. When the seas go dry and mountains blow in the wind like leaves. When your womb quickens again, and you bear a living child. Then he will return, and not before.”
Secondly, as Jon Snow said, the prophecy could have been nothing more than the angry ramblings of a woman with a serious grudge.
That Would Certainly Complicate Things
In fact, Daenerys may very well already be pregnant with Jon Snow’s baby, something which would solve some problems while creating others.
If she is indeed pregnant with Jon Snow’s baby, the matter of succession appears solved. However, this hypothetical baby would have been conceived out of wedlock — and in the GoT universe, bastards can’t inherit lands, titles, and certainly not thrones. However, a quick visit to a septon — and a pledge to keep quiet — could retroactively solve that problem.
Then again, Snow, who is actually Rhaegar Targaryen, actually has a stronger claim to the Iron Throne than Daenerys. She may not be willing to give the throne up so easily. So far, these competing claims to the Iron Throne have been brushed aside due to more pressing matters, but it’s already clear that Dany isn’t prepared to accept Jon Snow’s claim just yet, possibly setting up a dispute between the two lovers. A pregnancy is only going to further complicate matters.
Additionally, the father of Daenerys’ baby would be her nephew, which is kind of weird. However, this is hardly the most egregious example of an incestuous relationship to be found in the show. Daenerys’ own mother and father were brother and sister, after all.
Or Maybe It Will All Be For Naught Anyway
Of course, the matter of Daenerys’ fertility is just empty talk if she doesn’t wind up taking the Iron Throne from Cersei Lannister. The show’s writers may very well refuse to wrap everything up nicely with a happy ending, perhaps favoring the Lannister queen staying on the throne — and laying waste to all of her enemies in the process. If that’s the case, the question of whether or not Dany can bear children becomes largely irrelevant.