One of the things that we saw in episode 10 of House of the Dragon was that Daemon Targaryen stressed the fact that they still had three dragons that were yet to be claimed. This included Vermithor, who was the dragon of King Jaehaerys but hadn’t had a rider for nearly 30 years. Of course, in the book, Vermithor has a rider in the form of Hugh Hammer. So, who is Hugh Hammer in Fire & Blood?
Hugh Hammer was a dragonseed and the son of a blacksmith. When Prince Jacaerys called for more dragonriders during the Dance of the Dragons, he answered the call and claimed Vermithor. He participated for the Blacks during the war but ended up betraying Rhaenyra to switch to the Greens.
The fact that there are also Targaryen bastards among the people in Dragonstone means that there are a lot of other people that have the ability to ride dragons, similar to what the legitimate Targaryens are capable of. Hugh Hammer proved to be one of those bastards, as he was able to claim the dragon of a king. Now, let’s talk more about Hugh Hammer in Fire & Blood.
Who Is Hugh Hammer In Fire & Blood?
Back in episode 10 of House of the Dragon, we saw how one of the lords that supported Rhaenyra stressed the fact that the Blacks had a power that hadn’t been seen since the time of Old Valyria. He was talking about the dragons that the Blacks had at that time. And this made him think about how the Blacks had the Greens thoroughly outnumbered in terms of the dragons that their side had.
While the Blacks only had seven dragons that had riders, there were six other dragons that were yet to be claimed. Vermithor was one of those six dragons. We know for a fact that Vermithor, nicknamed the Bronze Fury, was the dragon of the late king Jaehaerys. However, since the death of Jaehaerys, Vermithor hasn’t had a dragonrider. And when we saw Daemon singing to Vermithor, it was quite clear that he was actually prepping the dragon for a new rider.
Of course, we know that the series is based on the Fire & Blood book, which was able to properly tell the storyline of the Dance of the Dragons. That means that, in the book, Vermithor had already been claimed by a new rider. This rider was Hugh Hammer. So, who is Hugh Hammer in Fire & Blood?
After the Blacks lost some of their dragonriders in the middle of the Targaryen civil war, he called for more dragonriders to claim the riderless dragons in Dragonstone and Driftmark. This event was called the Sowing of the Seeds, as the dragonseeds, who are bastards that had Targaryen blood in them, were able to come forward to try to claim the riderless dragons. Hugh Hammer was one of those dragonseeds.
Hugh was the bastard son of a blacksmith that lived on Dragonstone during the time of the Dance of the Dragons. During the time that Jacaerys called for Dragonriders, Hugh was one of the dragonseeds that answered the call of the prince, as he was able to claim Vermithor without much trouble.
After claiming Vermithor, Hugh participated in the Battle in the Gullet, as he was able to become prominent enough among the different members of the Blacks. He began calling himself Hugh Hammer after that battle.
Due to his success in the Battle in the Gullet, Hugh Hammer was granted knighthood by Queen Rhaenyra, who even gave him lands on Driftmark. However, the thing about Hugh was that he allowed his success to get over to his head, as he was constantly quarreling with different people throughout his time as a dragonrider. Nevertheless, he was successful enough that Daemon actually wanted to give Casterly Rock to Hugh after he proposed the idea of destroying the Lannisters. But Corlys and Rhaenyra refused the suggestion.
In the middle of the war, Hugh and another dragonseed in the form of Ulf White were sent to Tumbleton to defend the town against the Hightower army. It was during the First Battle of Tumbleton that Hugh and Ulf defected the Greens, as they became known as the Two Betrayers. The fact that Hugh betrayed the Blacks was one of the reasons why Rhaenyra grew to become paranoid about the possibility that the other dragonseeds might betray her.
During the time when Hugh was with the Greens, he began calling himself Lord Hammer and even wanted to be a king. In fact, he quarreled with a few Greens during that time and even began wearing a crown of black iron. Because of the things that Hugh was doing, he was eventually murdered by some of the members of the Greens.
Will Hugh Hammer Ride Vermithor In House Of The Dragon?
We saw in episode 10 that Daemon stressed the fact that they had more dragons than the Greens. He was also prepping Vermithor for a new rider, as there is no doubt that one of the things that the Blacks will do in season 2 is to find dragonriders for the riderless dragons, which include the Bronze Fury.
In that regard, there is a good possibility that Hugh Hammer and the dragonseeds will be introduced in season 2 of House of the Dragon. But the thing that we noticed in episode 10 was that the camera focused on Rhaena Targaryen after Daemon stressed the fact that both Vermithor and Silverwing were riderless.
It isn’t rare for the live-action versions of George RR Martin’s books to introduce changes that weren’t in the books. This was the case in Game of Thrones. Of course, we saw a few changes introduced in House of the Dragon as well.
That means that there is a good chance that we might not see Hugh Hammer in the series, especially because Rhaena is still without a dragon. It is possible that the series will actually skip the dragonseeds altogether, depending on how they would tell the story of the Dance of the Dragons.
But what we do know is that Hugh Hammer’s presence in the book was important in telling the story of how Rhaenyra became a somewhat cruel and paranoid queen while she was sitting on the Iron Throne after taking King’s Landing. That’s because Rhaenyra became more paranoid about the people surrounding her when Hugh and Ulf betrayed her. As such, there is still a good possibility that Hugh Hammer will appear in season 2 of House of the Dragon.