House Targaryen
A red three-headed dragon,
on a black field.
"Fire and Blood"
Dragonstone (former)
King's Landing (former)
Currently in exile
(formerly the Crownlands)
Military strength
3 dragons,
under 100 Dothraki cavalry,
8,000 Unsullied (heavy infantry),
2,000 Second Sons (armored mercenary cavalry)
Cadet branches
House Blackfyre (extinct)
Date of founding
Rulers of Dragonstone island since 500 years ago. Unknown amount of time beforehand as a noble family of the Valyrian Freehold.
Ancestral weapon
Blackfyre (lost)
Dark Sister (lost)
"Half the Targaryens went mad didn't they? What's the saying? 'Every time a Targaryen is born the gods flip a coin.'"
―Cersei Lannister[src]
File:House Targaryen banner.jpg
File:House Targaryen banner.png
File:Daenerys and Viserys.jpg

House Targaryen is one of the former Great Houses of Westeros and the previous ruling royal house of the Seven Kingdoms, before House Baratheon took the Iron Throne, and the few surviving Targaryens fled into exile. House Targaryen's symbol is a three-headed red dragon on a black background and their motto is "Fire and Blood".



Once a noble family of the vast Valyrian Freehold, an empire spanning most of the eastern continent, the Targaryens were given control of the island of Dragonstone in the Narrow Sea some centuries ago. After the obliteration of Valyria in the Doom, the Targaryens launched a devastating invasion of Westeros using three dragons to spearhead their attack. In a short period of time, six of the seven formerly independent kingdoms had surrendered to the Targaryen leader, King Aegon I, unifying the continent under his rule. The last hold-out, Dorne, joined the kingdom through a political and marriage alliance some two centuries later.[1]

During the increasingly erratic reign of King Aerys II, his son Rhaegar kidnapped Lyanna Stark of Winterfell for unknown reasons. This sparked a massive uprising led by Eddard Stark, Robert Baratheon and Jon Arryn. At the end of this war Aerys and Rhaegar were dead and the Targaryen power-base in Westeros destroyed. Aerys's youngest children, Viserys and Daenerys, were taken by Targaryen loyalists into exile in the Free Cities of the East.[1]

Targaryens have some common genetic traits such as silver-white hair. Some members of the family are also immune to the effects of fire, extreme heat, or high temperatures.

Season 1Edit

Viserys Targaryen arranges for the marriage of his sister Daenerys to the powerful dothraki Khal Drogo in exchange for a promise that Drogo will help him to reclaim his crown. The marriage was brokered by Illyrio Mopatis, a magister of Pentos. Illyrio gives Daenerys a trio of ancient dragon eggs as a gift.[2] Daenerys comes to love both Drogo and his people while Viserys is increasingly frustrated by Drogo's failure to deliver on his promise.[3] Daenerys becomes pregnant with Drogo's son and he is prophesied to be the "Stallion that mounts the world." Frustrated by the acceptance of Daenerys by the dothraki Viserys drunkenly threatens her unborn child and demands his crown. Drogo kills him by pouring molten gold over his head.[4]

Drogo then pledges to invade Westeros for Daenerys when she survives an assassination attempt.[5] He raids villages of the Lhazareen to enslave their inhabitants, intending to use them to barter passage across the Narrow Sea. He takes a superficial wound during the attack.[6] When the wound festers Daenerys turns to the captive Mirri Maz Duur to treat him. Duur's reputation as a "maegi" causes friction between Daenerys and Drogo's warriors. Daenerys allows Duur to use blood magic to treat him. Drogo's bloodrider Qotho violently objects, injuring Daenerys and triggering premature labour.[7] Duur's spell leaves Drogo catatonic and Daenerys's son stillborn. His khalasar splinters leaving Daenerys with only dozens of riders remaining. Daenerys kills Drogo to end his suffering. She then has Duur burned alive on his funeral pyre, also placing her dragon eggs among the flames. She steps into the inferno and emerges the next day unharmed with three newborn dragons.[8]

Season 2Edit

Daenerys's adviser Ser Jorah Mormont warns that rival khals will target her and advises that she flee into the Red Waste.[9] Her crossing is harrowing and she loses the majority of her horses and some of her people.[10] Upon arriving in Qarth she is allowed into the city under the protection of wealthy merchant Xaro Xhoan Daxos.[11] Xaro makes a pragmatic marriage proposal, promising to fund Daenerys return to Westeros in exchange for becoming a king. Jorah counsels against entering Xaro's debt and reveals his own, unrequited, feelings for Daenerys.[12]



Aerion Targaryen
Aemon Targaryen
Night's Watch 16px
Aegon V Targaryen
Targaryen Queen
Duncan Targaryen
Aerys II Targaryen
Rhaella Targaryen
Rhaegar Targaryen
Elia Targaryen
née Martell File:Martell-small.png
Viserys Targaryen
Daenerys Targaryen
Rhaenys Targaryen
Aegon Targaryen


Sworn to House TargaryenEdit

Household and alliesEdit

Military strengthEdit

In EssosEdit

House Targaryen's military strength has fluctuated over the last few years under Daenerys Targaryen's leadership. Since the death of her husband, she has commanded a khalasar containing only a few dozen riders, less than half of whom are warriors, as well as a single trained knight, Jorah Mormont. During her time in the Red Waste and Qarth, her dragons were not large enough to provide any meaningful assistance.

By the time Daenerys reached Astapor in Slaver's Bay, her dragons had grown enough to provide limited air support in certain engagements, and she had gained the loyalty of an additional knight, Ser Barristan Selmy. It should be pointed out that although limited, the dragons are capable of providing the only air support in the known world.

Following the Sack of Astapor, Daenerys gained an army of 8,000 fully trained Unsullied, elite warrior-eunuchs who fight in large, disciplined phalanx formations, as well as several hundred Unsullied-in-training who serve as auxiliaries.

Shortly after arriving at Yunkai, Daenerys is able to secure the affection of Daario Naharis, a lieutenant in the Second Sons. During a parley between Daenerys and the captains of the Second Sons, Daario points out that Daenerys' Unsullied are impressive infantry, but she still possesses no cavalry, siege weapons, or ships. Later that night, Daario slays the captains of the Second Sons, makes himself captain, and pledges the company to Daenerys. The Second Sons add 2,000 armored cavalry to the growing Targaryen army.

In WesterosEdit

There are no official allies or vassals of House Targaryen left in Westeros. Varys is implied to be secretly a Targaryen loyalist, but by himself he commands no military forces and cannot be considered a military asset.

King Robert Baratheon expressed fear that even after all these years, there are still a sizable number of noble Houses in Westeros who are either secret Targaryen loyalists, or who later developed some grievance with Robert's rule, and would flock to the Targaryen banner if they attempted to retake the Iron Throne in open war. It is not clear to what extent paranoia influenced his opinions, since Ser Jorah stressed to Dany that the number of Targaryen loyalists in Westeros is far lower than Viserys liked to believe. Viserys, at least, believed that because House Tyrell of the Reach and House Martell of Dorne fought on the Targaryen side during Robert's Rebellion, the prospects were good that they'd be willing to join his cause and rebel against Robert. Thus far, there has been no evidence that dissatisfied houses would support a Targaryen return.

Image galleryEdit

In the booksEdit

In the A Song of Ice and Fire novels, House Targaryen moved from Valyria to Dragonstone, apparently in fear of a prophecy predicting the destruction of Valyria a century before it happened. After the fall of Valyria, the Targaryens stayed on Dragonstone for a hundred years, apparently hoarding the strength of their dragons and debating whether to invade Westeros or to attempt to seize control of the Valyrian colony-states which later became known as the Free Cities. In the event, they chose to invade Westeros instead.

House Targaryen ruled Westeros for 283 years, during which time they survived substantial civil wars (including the Dance of Dragons and no less than five Blackfyre Rebellions), plague (the Great Spring Sickness) and even an attempted foreign invasion (in the War of the Ninepenny Kings). They were brought down when the Mad King's insanity became too dangerous to be ignored.

The Targaryens adopted the religion and many of the customs of Westeros, but two old Valyrian customs they continued to perform in defiance of public disapproval: Targaryen princes and kings were allowed to have multiple wives and Targaryens were allowed to marry brother to sister, something considered an abominable sin elsewhere in Westeros.

The generations of Targaryen inbreeding produced a distinctive set of physical features shared by all of their members during the House's three centuries of rule. This includes a generally pale appearance with silver-white (platinum blonde) hair, and purple irises. While pale they are not albinos, but even their eyebrows are white. The actors playing both Daenerys and Viserys are actually dark-haired in real life, so they had to wear wigs (though a slight difference that obsessive fans have pointed out is that they didn't dye their eyebrows white to match). The TV series opted not to portray Targaryens with purples eyes, partially due to the logistical difficulty in matching up purple contact lenses for actors in every shot. The TV series actually did originally film Viserys and Daenerys wearing violet contact lenses, but showrunners David Benioff and Dan Weiss quickly abandoned their use. As they explained in the Season 1 Blu-ray episode commentaries, "actors act with their eyes, and [the lenses] really hurt the emotion."[13]

According to the TV series official pronunciation guide developed for the cast and crew, "Targaryen" is pronounced "Tar-GAIR-ee-in", as opposed to "Tar-gar-yen" etc.

See alsoEdit


v  d  e
House Targaryen
Lord: Daenerys Targaryen Heir: None
Seat: Exiled Lands: Exiled
Title(s): King of the Andals and the First Men, Lord of the Seven Kingdoms, Protector of the Realm
Ancestors:Aegon the Conqueror · Visenya · Rhaenys · Maegor the Cruel · Jaehaerys I · Rhaenyra · Aegon II · Aegon III · Baelor the Blessed · Viserys II · Aegon the Unworthy · Naerys · Daena the Defiant · Daeron the Good · Daenerys Martell · Myriah Martell · Baelor Breakspear · Aerys I · Aelinor · Rhaegel · Maekar I · Aerion the Monstrous · Aegon the Unlikely · Duncan the Small
Current members:Aemon Targaryen
Deceased members:Aerys II Targaryen · Rhaella Targaryen · Rhaegar Targaryen · Elia Martell · Rhaenys Targaryen · Aegon Targaryen · Viserys Targaryen · Drogo · Rhaego
Household:Ser Jorah Mormont · Ser Barristan Selmy · Rakharo · Kovarro · Aggo · Irri · Doreah · Jhiqui · Malakho · Missandei · Grey Worm · Daario Naharis
v  d  e
Houses of the Crownlands
Royal House: Baratheon of King's Landing
Noble Houses: Blount · Hollard · Rosby · Rykker · Thorne
Narrow Sea Houses: Baratheon of Dragonstone · Velaryon
Exiled Houses: Targaryen
Extinct Houses: Blackfyre