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Mellos is the Grand Maester, and sits on the small council of King Viserys I Targaryen.[1]

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Behind the scenes

On September 24, 2021, HBO announced that David Horovitch had signed on for House of the Dragon in the role of Mellos. The character breakdown reads as follows:

"A voice of reason and trusted advisor to King Viserys."
―HBO[|[src]]

In the books

In Fire & Blood, there were actually two Grand Maesters during most of Viserys I's reign: Runciter and then Mellos. The TV series apparently condensed both into one character.

Runciter was appointed as Grand Maester in 101 AC at the very end of King Jaehaerys's reign, mere months before the death of his second son Baelon sparked the need for the Great Council at Harrenhal. Jaehaerys died only two years later and Viserys succeeded him, while Runciter continued to serve as Grand Maester until his own death in 112 AC. His chronicles of this first decade are curt and impartial, trying not to show bias.

The Conclave of Archmaesters appointed Mellos as Runciter's replacement. He was considered a moderating voice on the small council, urging compromise between the increasingly divided factions forming at the royal court. Mellos was politically neutral and his only goal was to ensure the stability of the realm. On the one hand, this made him frequently counsel King Viserys to forgive his rogue brother Daemon's frequent indiscretions. On the other hand, Mellos was so dedicated to ensuring stability that he urged forcing Viserys's daughter Rhaenyra into a loveless political marriage to further unify the realm.

Mellos was a wise political counsellor but perhaps not the best physician in the realm: he was a bit old-minded when it came to medicine and preferred treating many ailments with frequent leechings, while younger maesters achieved more success with medicinal potions and chemical tinctures.

Coincidentally, in the books both Grand Maester Runciter and Harrold Westerling of the Kingsguard died within months of each other in the year 112 AC, two years before Rhaenyra's marriage. In the TV series, the role of "Mellos" was extended backward in time to merge with the role of Runciter at the beginning of Viserys's realm; conversely, teaser trailers have shown that Harrold's role has been expanded forward in time, apparently merging him with aspects of other Kingsguard characters, so that he is still alive late in the reign of Viserys I. Both TV versions are condensation characters: in the books, "Mellos" and "Harrold Westerling" never met each other, yet in the second teaser trailer the TV versions are shown standing side by side.

See also

References


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