The Game of Thrones seventh season finale finally revealed Jon Snow’s true name and that he may be something even more than just the King in the North.
Warning: Spoilers for the Game of Thrones Season 7 finale episode “The Dragon and the Wolf” follow.
Game of Thrones has slowly been revealing the true history of Jon Snow, once believed to be no one more than Ned Stark’s bastard, the result of an uncharacteristic lapse in Ned’s famous, steadfast honor while he was off fighting in Robert’s Rebellion.
It turns out that story was entirely a fabrication, right down to Jon’s name, which is actually Aegon Targaryen.
Previous episodes of Game of Thrones revealed, through Bran Stark’s greenseer abilities, that Ned Stark is not actually Jon’s father. Instead, Jon is the son of Lyanna Stark, Ned’s sister, and presumably Rhaegar Targaryen, who had supposedly abducted Lyanna, thus inciting the war.
In the season seven, Samwell Tarly arrived at Winterfell and had a revealing conversation with Bran about Jon. Bran cut to the chase, confirming to Sam that Jon is indeed Lyanna and Rhaegar’s son. However, Bran assumed that Jon was still a bastard, and that would make his name Jon Sand since he was born in Dorne.
However, during Sam’s studies at the Citadel, he discovered the journals of a High Septon who had annulled Rhaegar’s marriage to Elia Martell. With this knowledge in hand, Bran used his greenseer ability to get some more answers and discovered that Lyanna and Rhaegar were legally wed. Robert’s Rebellion was built on a lie, and Jon was not a bastard.
Bran then dug deeper, returning to the Tower of Joy and the moment when Lyanna died and passed Jon into Ned Stark’s arms. Bran then heard the words that have been a mystery in the A Song of Ice and Fire novels for years, Lyanna’s final words and request to her brother. Lyanna tells Ned that the child’s name is Aegon Targaryen and asks that he protect him.