House of the Dragon: Alicent Hightower’s green dress explained

Rhaneyra Targaryen is set to inherit the Iron Throne but a civil war is brewing and it started with Queen Alicent Hightower's green dress

Queen Alicent Hightower's green dress explained

What was the significance of Alicent Hightower’s green dress? Plots and schemes were always central to Game of Thrones, and the new fantasy series House of the Dragon is no different. The TV series is set at a time when the Targaryen’s power is absolute, but all around them, the lords and ladies of Westeros plot to usurp their power.

One family that seems closest to achieving its ambition of securing the Iron Throne are the Hightowers. Otto Hightower served Viserys loyally as Hand of the King but used the death of the King’s wife to install his daughter Lady Alicent – the best friend of Princess Princess Rhaenyra – as the new queen.

When Alicent bore Viserys a son, Otto plotted to have his grandson named heir ahead of Princess Rhaenyra. To begin with, Alicent stayed above the petty quarrels. Still, upon discovering that Rhaenyra had slept with her Kingsuard Criston Cole, she seemed to realise her former friend had manipulated her. As such, she wore an emerald gown to Rhaenyra’s wedding, but what was the significance of Alicent Hightower’s green dress?

What was the significance of Alicent Hightower’s green dress?

As one of the courtiers pointed out, green is the colour of the flame that burns atop the Hightower’s ancestral home. Alicent choosing to wear green signifies a symbolic loyalty to House Hightower over the Targaryens and is a call to her family’s bannermen to protect her.

It’s probably as close to a declaration of war as Alicent can make and signifies a significant turning point in Westeros’s history: the birth of the Greens. Indeed the episode begins with her recruiting Ser Criston Cole, who will become a chief player in the Greens and the war to come.

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Who are the Greens?

The Greens were a faction in the Targaryen civil war known as the Dance of Dragons. The Greens were those loyal to Queen Alicent and her son Aegon II. They were opposed by the Blacks, led by Rhaneyra and Daemon Targaryen.

The Dance of Dragons was technically started by the Greens, who, following the death of Viserys, had Aegon crowned king despite Rhaneyra being named his heir. The Seven Kingdoms were effectively split in two by this decision, with those believing that only a son could succeed his father siding with the Greens while those who respected the wishes of the late Viserys sided with the Blacks.

Ser Criston Cole in House of the Dragon

Greens vs Blacks: Who wins the Dance of Dragons?

Neither faction wins the Dance of Dragons. All that the Dance does is serve to drastically weaken House Targaryen by killing the majority of the dragons.

Both sides effectively give up but not before the deaths of both Aegon II and Rhaenyra. Technically one of the Blacks ends up on the throne, Aegon III, but it’s a phyric victory at best.

If you love the Seven Kingdoms, check out our guide to the best Game of Thrones characters, or we have a list of the best fantasy movies ever made.