The Citadel

The Archive of 'A Song of Ice and Fire' Lore


House Targaryen of King's Landing

A red three-headed dragon, breathing flame on black (© RMB)

General Information

One of the ancient houses of the Freehold of Valyria, the Targaryens were one of the few families to survive the Detom of their home. They escaped to sail from the disaster, leading a remnant of their dragon-ruling people to the westernmost outpost of Valyrian influence, Dragonstone. A couple hundred years later, under Aegon the Conqueror and his sisters, the Valyrians and lords of Dragonstone were invading the realms of Westeros. Although the Targaryen kings took their seat at King’s Landing, the place where Aegon and his army first landed and made their first fort, Dragonstone remained the traditional seat of the heir-apparent to the throne. Their motto is, “Fire and Blood.”

King Aerys II Targaryen was the last ruling king of his line after nearly 300 years of unbroken rule. Lord Robert Baratheon ascended to the Iron Throne in the year 283 after successfully leading a rebellion against the Targaryens which erupted after Aerys’ unjust murders of several important lords and other atrocities.

Aerys’s only remaining children after the death of his heir and eldest son Rhaegar, Viserys and the new-born Daenerys, were taken away by Ser Willum Darry from Dragonstone to Braavos to seek aid from the merchant princes of the Free Cities and then to eventually beg their way through life until only recently.

The three-headed dragon represents Aegon the Conqueror and his two sisters, Rhaenys and Visenya, as well as their three dragons: Vhagar, Meraxes, and the dreaded Balerion.


Marrying his sister Danaerys to Drogo, the most powerful khal of the Dothraki, Viserys hoped to win an army to invade the Seven Kingdoms. He was killed by Khal Drogo after breaking a sacred law of Vaes Dothrak while threatening Danaerys. Drogo was later seriously wounded in battle against another khal. A captured priestess and maegi of the Lhazareen people was told to heal him and she betrayed Dany, causing her child to come out stillborn and leaving Drogo alive but mindless.

Dany suffocated Drogo and joined him on his funeral pyre with her three dragon eggs. She survived by some miracle, with three newly hatched dragons with her. With her dragons, Ser Jorah Mormont of her Queensguard, and the few Dothraki left to her after Drogo’s khalasar split apart into many, she was recieved in Quarth only to discover her dragons were coveted. Magister Illyrio has sent a former gladiatorial slave and an old squire from Westeros to return her to Pentos.

Since then, Danaerys has gone on to win an army of Unsullied, sellswords, and freed slaves, and to conquer the slaver cities of Astapor, Yunkai, and Meereen. Dany has installed herself as queen of the last of these cities, but soon finds that the Meereenese see her as a tyrant and usurper. She struggles against the Sons of the Harpy, a murderous secret resistance, while attempting to prepare Meereen for the oncoming assault of Yunkai and its allies in Volantis and elsewhere. In a desperate attempt to settle the city, she weds Hizdahr zo Loraq, a wealthy and well-connected nobleman of Meereen who then helps her forge peace with the Yunkish. After the wedding, she attends the reopening of the fighting pits, only for Drogon—grown large and feral—to swoop down into the pit. As the crowds are terrified, and as Strong Belwas appears to be poisoned by delicacies that had been intended for her, she leaps into the pit and manages to command Drogon…

... and flies away on his back, as he roars gouts of fire. Much later, she is ill, starved, and half-mad in the Dothraki sea, where Drogon had made his lair. She eventually stumbles across a Dothraki scout, who flees from her, and so calls Drogon to her and gives chase. She is last seen awaiting Khal Jhaqo and half a hundred Dothraki warriors, with Drogon beside her.