Game of Thrones S07E07: Why Jon Snow's real name is so important

Jon Snow's real name revealed
Photo credit: HBO

Jon Snow has always been known as a bastard in Game of Thrones, but questions about his parents - and even his name - have intrigued fans for years.

In the latest episode, those questions were finally answered.

Spoilers for Game of Thrones S07E07 follow.

In the seventh and final episode of season seven, 'The Dragon and the Wolf', Jon Snow's real name was revealed as Aegon Targaryen.

He is the son of husband and wife Rhaegar Targaryen and Lyanna Stark, making him a more rightful heir to the Iron Throne than Daenerys - whom he has bent the knee to as his new queen, and copulated with... not knowing she was his aunt.

"Ewwwww!" Emilia Clarke, the actress who plays Daenerys, told Entertainment Weekly about the accidental incest.

She added that she thinks Daenerys will probably want to wash her mouth out in disgust when she finds out - and won't be keen on sharing the throne.

"I've worked so hard, I don't want to share that throne... [It's only] big enough for one dragon bum, and that's mine."

The name 'Aegon' is especially meaningful within the world of Game of Thrones. Aegon the Conqueror was the first Targaryen ruler in Westeros and ancient ancestor of Daenerys (and Jon/Aegon).

He built the Iron Throne out of the swords of his enemies and united the warring regions of Westeros into one kingdom, after flying over from Essos with his dragons.

Aegon is also the name of Rhaegar's other son - Jon/Aegon's brother - who was murdered by The Mountain during Robert's Rebellion. He was born from Rhaegar's previous marriage to Elia Martell.

Game of Thrones and the books it is based on are rich with prophecies, many of which point to Jon/Aegon as a messianic saviour figure. This coupled with his legitimate claim to the throne are likely to have huge, dramatic consequences on his relationship with Daenerys.

In the eighth and final season of Game of Thrones, Jon Snow's true identity as Aegon Targaryen is going to be a central element of the long-awaited conclusion to the whole story.