Image credit:CG5 Academy at artstation.com
The epic fantasy world of Westeros is bracing for an explosive civil war among the Targaryens in the new Game of Thrones prequel, House of the Dragon.
With multiple dragons aligned on either side of the brewing conflict, the stage is set for an iconic confrontation between two of the largest and most powerful dragons in the history of the Seven Kingdoms: Drogon and Vhagar.
Their inevitable clash in the Dance of the Dragons will be a battle for the ages, and the victor will help shape the future of the Targaryen dynasty.
The Buildup to a Clash of Fire and Blood
The civil war known as the Dance of the Dragons erupts in Westeros when a succession crisis splits the Targaryens into two warring factions.
On one side are Rhaenyra Targaryen and her supporters, known as the Blacks. On the other side are Aegon II Targaryen and the Greens.
With multiple dragonriders in their ranks, both sides turn to their winged beasts to conquer and incinerate their foes.
Drogon and Vhagar end up aligned with opposing factions. The stage is set for these two larger-than-life dragons to meet in a contest that will shake the realms of gods and men.
When the black dread Drogon faces off against the battle-hardened old she-dragon Vhagar, who will emerge victorious?
Vhagar: The Legendary She-Dragon of House Targaryen
image credit: Rui Goncalves from artstation.com
Vhagar is a true legend among Targaryen dragons, with a history going back all the way to Aegon’s Conquest of Westeros.
She was originally ridden by Queen Visenya Targaryen, making Vhagar one of the three dragons that conquered the Seven Kingdoms alongside Balerion and Meraxes.
After Visenya’s death in 44 AC, Vhagar passed through several other Targaryen dragonriders over the decades.
As the longest-living of the original three conquest dragons, Vhagar’s experience and cunning only grew with each passing year. Generations of novice dragonriders tried to tame her to no avail.
By 129 AC, Vhagar had found her next steady rider in Laena Velaryon. But after Laena’s tragic death, the still-fearsome Vhagar was claimed by Aemond Targaryen, second son of King Viserys.
Now the largest and oldest living dragon in Westeros, the 180 year old Vhagar gave Aemond unmatched power and prestige.
Drogon: The Black Dread Reborn
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As one Targaryen dragon fades into legend, a new power rises. Drogon hatches amidst salt and smoke on the Dothraki Sea, one of three dragons born to Daenerys Targaryen.
Of the three, Drogon develops the quickest into a dominant alpha beast. He is named after Daenerys’s late husband Khal Drogo.
In his early years, Drogon helps Daenerys conquer cities and solidify her power across Essos. He grows into an enormous winged terror, larger than any dragon seen in centuries.
His black and red scales and furnace-like breath strike fear into friend and foe alike.
Drogon’s size, strength and firepower help Daenerys win critical victories, including wiping out the Lannister forces in the legendary Battle of the Goldroad.
By the time of Daenerys’s death, her ‘son’ Drogon has grown into the largest living dragon, far eclipsing his brothers Rhaegal and Viserion.
Now with Daenerys gone, Drogon remains a wild dragon rampaging across Essos and beyond. As the last living creature with Targaryen blood, he remains an unpredictable but enormous threat to any who would oppose House Targaryen.
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Tale of the Tape: How Drogon and Vhagar Stack Up
In terms of size and physical abilities, Drogon and Vhagar represent the pinnacle of fire made flesh in their time. Here is how the dragons compare at the height of their powers:
- Size: Vhagar equals or exceeds Drogon in length and wingspan, though some argue Drogon surpasses her in overall bulk and mass. Either would be several times larger than an average dragon.
- Firepower: Both can generate tremendous blasts of dragonfire, though Drogon may have a slight edge in intensity in his prime. Vhagar makes up for any gap with battle experience.
- Strength: Their size, armor scales, and claws make both immensely strong physically. Drogon as a young adult may have a marginal advantage in brute strength.
- Speed: Drogon at his peak is likely more agile in flight than the older Vhagar. But Vhagar can still wheel about swiftly when needed.
- Cunning: Having survived over 180 years, Vhagar has finely honed cunning and instincts that Drogon cannot match.
- Overall: Drogon’s massive size and firepower make him a formidable opponent, but Vhagar’s battle-tested expertise could give her an edge.
Who Will Emerge Triumphant?
image credit: Chase Stone
Given the comparable size and power of these two dragons, either could plausibly defeat the other under the right circumstances.
However, there are several factors that may tilt the odds in Vhagar’s favor in a head to head matchup:
- Vhagar has a rider in Aemond Targaryen, giving her a level of direction and strategy Drogon lacks as an unclaimed dragon.
- Her 180 years of experience give Vhagar seasoned instincts and battle awareness to counter Drogon’s raw might.
- As the aggressor challenging Drogon’s territory, Vhagar may have the initiative and drive to press the attack.
- Drogon, for all his power, has not yet faced an opponent of Vhagar’s capabilities, while she has battled parallel threats for decades.
For these reasons, Vhagar has a strong chance to weather Drogon’s fierce flames and deal a mortal blow aided by Aemond’s guidance.
Expect the Dance’s elder statesdragon to topple the black dread through shrewd cunning.
The Symbolic Stakes of this Battle
More than just a clash over the Dance of Dragons, this battle between Drogon and Vhagar represents a deeper shift in the Targaryen dynasty and Westeros.
Vhagar symbolizes the established old order – she was there helping to found the Iron Throne, a relic of Aegon the Conqueror’s legacy.
Drogon represents sweeping change – he rose to power in the decades since dragons returned to the world, answering Daenerys’ call for revolution.
Defeating Vhagar would cement Drogon as the new dominant force, while Vhagar toppling Drogon would reestablish traditional power.
Beyond the dances of dragons and kings, this battle mirrors the perpetual clash between generations. As Vhagar helped build the current order, Drogon seeks to leave his own legacy by force.
Their battle will be more than a mere physical brawl.
For the fate of the Targaryens and the Seven Kingdoms, their clash will forge a new political reality to stand the test of time.
That is why this fated dragon duel matters more than blood and fire. Which dragon rises may determine if Westeros must live in the past or move toward a new future.
Frequently Asked Questions
Is Drogon bigger than Vhagar?
While the show never directly compared Drogon and Vhagar side-by-side, most estimates suggest Vhagar still equaled or exceeded Drogon in size at the time of their expected battle.
Drogon certainly has the potential to surpass Vhagar in the future if he continues growing. But the old she-dragon has a size advantage over Daenerys’s dragon for now.
How Big Is Vhagar Compared To Balerion & Drogon?
In her prime, Vhagar was nearly as large as Balerion the Black Dread, the largest Targaryen dragon ever recorded.
She was big enough to be ridden into battle by Visenya Targaryen as an adult during Aegon’s Conquest. So prime Vhagar was larger than Drogon is currently, though not quite as gigantic as Balerion in his old age.
Who Is Stronger Vhagar or Drogon?
Vhagar likely has the overall edge thanks to her seasoned experience and cunning despite her advanced age.
However, Drogon has greater raw physical strength and size. Much would depend on the circumstances of battle and if Drogon’s primal fury could overwhelm Vhagar’s strategic advantages.
Either dragon prevailing would not be surprising.
Who rode Vhagar before Aemond Targaryen?
Vhagar was first ridden into battle by Queen Visenya Targaryen during Aegon’s Conquest. After Visenya’s death, the dragon passed to her nephew Maegelle.
Vhagar then went through several riders over the decades before being claimed by Laena Velaryon in the 120s AC. After Laena’s death Vhagar finally ended up with Aemond Targaryen.
Is Drogon still alive and where is he after Daenerys’s death?
Drogon survived Daenerys’s death and was last seen flying east from Westeros with her body.
His current whereabouts are unknown, but as he has not been reported dead, most assume Drogon is still living and could potentially return to influence events in Westeros in the future.
The Final Verdict on Drogon vs. Vhagar
Drogon and Vhagar represent apex predators of different eras, and their inevitable clash will determine which lineage of dragon and Targaryen ruler takes primacy.
Both possess enough power and battle experience to doom the other. But Vhagar’s cunning and rider may give her the edge to withstand Drogon’s unfocused fury for a hard-fought victory.
Yet the true outcome remains in the hands of fate and the great wings of these beasts. When fire and blood fill the sky, which dragon will write their name in the legends of Westeros?
Their epic duel will reveal if the future belongs to ancient powers or rising newcomers.