There are a lot of different interesting characters in House of the Dragon, and there is no doubt that some of them are those who tend to be in the background a lot during the events of the series. One such character that we have seen since the very beginning is Ser Harwin Strong, who has always been around but is yet to take center stage as someone who could end up becoming important in the series. So, who is Ser Harwin Strong in House of the Dragon?
Ser Harwin Strong, played by Ryan Corr, is the eldest son of Lord Lyonel Strong, who is the Lord of Harrenhal and the Hand of the King. Called Breakbones, Ser Harwin is regarded as the strongest and mightiest knight throughout the Seven Kingdoms during his time and was rumored to be Rhaenyra’s lover.
At this point, we are yet to see Ser Harwin Strong playing an important role in House of the Dragon as we are still in the preliminary stages of the storyline. However, while he never becomes one of the most important characters, Harwin is set to play a huge role in the development of the storyline, especially when it comes to Rhaenyra’s future. Now, let’s talk more about Ser Harwin Strong in House of the Dragon.
Who Is Ser Harwin Strong In House Of The Dragon?
At this point in House of the Dragon, we have already met a lot of different characters that have played their own roles in the storyline. While we still know that the Targaryens are the most important characters in the series, some of the background characters have already made their mark and have already been introduced during the early parts of the events that will lead to the Targaryen civil war.
One such character that a lot of people may have easily discarded as a minor character is Ser Harwin Strong, who has been around for a while already. So, who is Ser Harwin Strong in House of the Dragon?
As we saw in episode 3, King Viserys Targaryen arranged a royal hunt in celebration of Prince Aegon II’s second name day. That means that there were several lords and ladies that went to the Kingswood to celebrate the festivities. One such character that we saw there was Ser Harwin Strong, who ended up joining the hunt as well because of his father’s close ties with the king.
Ser Harwin Strong, as his name implies, is the son of Lord Lyonel Strong, who was initially introduced as the Master of Laws in King Viserys’s Small Council but has since become the Hand of the King after Ser Otto Hightower was dismissed from his position. He is also the eldest among the two Strong brothers, as he is the older brother of Lord Larys Strong, who was also introduced in episode 3 as someone who was physically weak due to a birth defect that made it difficult for him to walk.
During the events of episode 3, King Viserys also mentioned in passing that Ser Harwin Strong was the mightiest knight in all of the Seven Kingdoms. That was probably the reason why he was called Breakbones, as he possesses enough might and strength to easily break bones. In the writings of George RR Martin, he is described as the strongest man in all of the Seven Kingdoms, as he was able to showcase his might in the events of the brawl between Ser Criston Cole and Ser Joffrey Lonmouth, where Harwin was able to easily fight his way through the crowd and carry Princess Rhaenyra to safety on his shoulder.
What Happened To Ser Harwin Strong In House Of The Dragon?
In the early portion of House of the Dragon, Harwin Strong seemingly looked like a minor character that was simply there to fill a role. But there were already indications of what his future role could be when he was first introduced in episode 3. During the scene wherein Princess Rhaenyra came back from the woods after killing a wild boar, he was one of the persons impressed by what the princess was able to accomplish despite the fact that she was covered in the blood of the beast.
It was also during episode 3 when it was made clear that Harwin cared about Larys, who wasn’t as strong as he was due to a birth defect. He is described to be a fierce protector of his younger brother. And it also looked like they had a pretty good relationship with one another.
When Lord Lyonel Strong came to King Viserys to provide him with counsel, the king thought that he was there to convince him that Ser Harwin was the right man to become Rhaenyra’s husband. However, Lyonel was merely there to tell him that the best match for the princess was Ser Laenor Velaryon.
Around a year after the events of the hunt in the Godswood, Ser Harwin Strong went on to join the City Watch. Of course, he was shown in the scene where Rhaenyra and Daemon snuck out of the Red Keep to have fun in King’s Landing. Ser Harwin caught Rhaenyra, who was dressed as a boy but was able to instantly recognize her. And after seeing that she was with Prince Daemon, he was quick to let the princess go.
Meanwhile, in episode 5, Ser Harwin Strong was shown as one of the people in attendance during the betrothal banquet of Princess Rhaenyra and Ser Laenor. He was shown to be one of the people in awe of Queen Alicent’s entrance, as he and Larys talked about the significance of the green dress that the queen was wearing. It was clear that he knew his history lessons when he was aware of what the color green means to House Hightower.
During the fight between Ser Criston Cole and Ser Joffrey Lonmouth, we saw that Lord Lyonel signaled to Ser Harwin to take the princess to safety. He easily fought his way through the crowd by punching and shoving people until he got to Rhaenyra. That was when he carried the princess on his shoulder and took her to a safe spot.
In the book, it was rumored that Ser Harwin Strong was the father of Rhaenyra’s children to Laenor, as it was implied that they had an affair going on while the princess was still married to the Velaryon heir.
As seen in the preview for episode 6, it seems like House of the Dragon will adapt this love affair between Ser Harwin and Rhaenyra. And that means that we might see their relationship in the next episode and how Ser Harwin and Rhaenyra’s children interact with one another.
While Ser Harwin is indeed the rumored father of Rhaenyra’s children, the problem was that someone wanted the rumors to quiet down. As such, in the book, Ser Harwin and Lord Lyonel died in a fire in Harrenhal. It was never explained who started the fire, but there were rumors that it was Lord Larys who secretly ordered the deaths of his brother and his father. That is why Ser Harwin Strong never had the chance to fight alongside his rumored sons during the Dance of the Dragons.