The past two seasons of Game of Thrones have centered around one major question: Who is Jon Snow? At the end of the latest one, we finally got a definitive answer—but it turns out the series’ biggest secret was hidden in plain sight years ago.
During the final episode of season seven, as Jon Snow and Daenerys bumped uglies on a ship, we learned that the snow baby was actually Aegon Targaryen, the legitimate son of Rhaegar Targaryen and Lyanna Stark, who’d been secretly married before she gave birth to the future King in the North. This meant that not only was Jon Snow not a bastard, but he was also first in line for the Iron Throne. The “R+L=J” theory had been circulating on fan sites since, well, the beginning of the show, but the theory was also hinted at well beforehand.
A Reddit post is drawing attention to a scene in the fifth episode of season three, “Kissed By Fire,” which introduced the character of Shireen Baratheon. Little Shireen went to visit Ser Davos Seaworth, who’d been imprisoned after trying to attack Melisandre, bringing him a book to read while spending time in the dungeon. Only, problem is, Davos didn’t know how to read. Shireen offered to help him, and behold the first word she taught him: Aegon.
That’s right, a full season before Ser Davos met Jon Snow, Shireen taught him how to read (and say) his future king’s true name. That’s because the book she brought was none other than An History of Aegon the Conqueror and His Conquest. It’s important to note that she also taught Gilly to read, later leading to her discovering Rhaegar and Lyanna’s secret marriage (even though Samwell totally ignored her at the time). And if you really, really want to get your tinfoil hats on, the fact that Shireen taught Davos to pronounce it by comparing it to the word “egg” also feels like a major hint. Because guess who that reminds us of?
In that sense, Shireen not only gave us a major clue about Jon Snow’s true identity, but also may have hinted at his eventual partnership (both professional and romantic) with the Mother of Dragons. And I have a feeling we’re going to see a lot more reveals like this over the coming months. As was pointed out in the comments on the aforementioned Reddit post, fans are surely going to find many more hints and clues that the episode writers snuck in, especially once the series is over. After all, what else are we going to do with our time? That’ll be the end of Game of Thrones. There won’t be any new episodes to...(sniffle) oh sorry...don’t mind me. Just got a little something in my eye.