From 'Game of Thrones' to 'House of the Dragon,' the Targaryen Family Tree

Editor’s Note: The following contains spoilers for the book Fire & Blood with spoilers to House of the Dragon.

The Big Picture

  • Knowing who’s who among the Targaryens in
    Game of Thrones
    House of the Dragon
    can be confusing, with multiple characters and complicated relationships.
  • The Targaryen family is filled with tragedy and conflict, from killings during Robert’s Rebellion to backstabbing and power struggles within the family.
  • The Targaryen family goes far back to Aegon the Conquerer who first conquered Westeros with his sister-wives and extends down to Jon Snow in
    Game of Thrones
    , who is revealed to be a Targaryen.

Ah, the Targaryens… They sure love their family. Almost as much as they love white wigs. This familial love, however, comes with a very serious problem: between all the incest, the backstabbing, and the multiple Aegons, Game of Thrones and House of the Dragon fans can sometimes get lost in the specifics of the most important family in the Seven Kingdoms. Game of Thrones alone already has about six Targaryens featured as proper characters, not to mention the ones that are brought up as relevant figures in the history of the Iron Throne. When we throw House of the Dragon into the mix, things get even more complicated. After all, this is a show in which basically all the characters are Targaryens, and they’re all related to one another by either blood or marriage – sometimes, both! Still, if you find yourself at a loss about who’s who in this neverending dance of dragons, fear not: here’s a guide to all the most important Targaryens in Game of Thrones and House of the Dragon.

house of the dragon poster

House of the Dragon

The reign of House Targaryen begins with this prequel to the popular HBO series Game of Thrones. Based on George R.R. Martin’s Fire & Blood, House of the Dragon is set nearly 200 years before Game of Thrones, telling the story of the Targaryen civil war with King Viserys.

Release Date
August 21, 2022

Ryan J. Condal, George R.R. Martin

Main Genre



Aegon I Targaryen

Aegon I Targaryen from Game of Thrones' animated history
Image via HBO

The founder of the Targaryen dynasty, Aegon the Conqueror flew from Valyria to Westeros and unified the Seven Kingdoms before the events of both Game of Thrones and House of the Dragon. He had two children, one with each of his sister-wives: Aenys was Rhaenys son, while Maegor was his son with Visenya. His story will be depicted in the Aegon the Conquerer spin-off prequel. He rides the massive dragon Balerion.

Visenya Targaryen

Visenya Targaryen from the Animated Game of Thrones shorts
Image via HBO

The older of Aegon’s two sisterwives, Visenya was known to be stern and passionate. She wields Dark Sister (the sword later passed down to Daemon Targaryen) and rides Vhagar (who is later ridden by Aemond Targaryen.) The eldest of all three Valyrians, rumor is that while Aegon married Visenya in Valyrian fashion, he also took their younger sister Rhaenys as a wife as well — Visenya for duty and Rhaenys for love.

Rhaenys Targaryen

Rhaenys Targaryen from the Animated Game of Thrones shorts
Image via HBO

The youngest of the three siblings, Rhaenys was gentler than her older sister and brother. She’s said to prefer dancing and music and flew more on the back of her dragon Meraxes than either of the other two. It is through Rhaenys that the Targaryen line is continued after her son Aenys takes the throne.

Jaehaerys Targaryen

Jaehaerys and his descendants in House of the Dragon
Image via HBO

King Jaehaerys I (Michael Carter) is the grandson of King Aegon I by way of his son Aenys and Alyssa Velaryon. He had nine children, all of whom died before the end of his reign. Without a proper heir, he held a Great Council so that the lords of Westeros could choose to be ruled by either Rhaenys (Eve Best), the daughter of his eldest son, or Viserys (Paddy Considine), his eldest living grandson. Due to the fact that the realm prefers a male heir, Viserys is the one chosen in the very first episode of House of the Dragon. Jaehaerys rides the dragon Vermithor, who we see Daemon sing to during the end of Season 1 of House of the Dragon.

Rhaenys Targaryen

Eve Best in house of the Dragon
Image via HBO

The Queen Who Never Was earned this moniker after losing the throne to her cousin, Viserys, in the Great Council held by her hierless grandfather, King Jaeherys I. Due to her desire to see a woman on the Iron Throne, Rhaenys eventually comes to support Rhaenyra in the Dance of the Dragons. She is married to Corlys Velaryon (Steve Toussaint), with whom she has two children, Laenor (John Macmillan) and Laena (Nanna Blondell). She rides the dragon Meleys, the Red Queen.

Viserys Targaryen

Paddy Considine as Viserys in House of the Dragon
Image via HBO

Unable to provide a male heir with his first wife, Aemma (Sian Brooke), Viserys names his only daughter, Rhaenyra (Milly Alcock/Emma D’Arcy), as his successor to the throne. This proves to be a mistake for King Viserys eventually remarries Alicent Hightower (Emily Carey/Olivia Cooke), with whom he has three sons: Aegon II (Tom Glynne-Carney), Aemond (Ewan Mitchell), and Daeron (in the books). The two also have a daughter, whom they name Helaena (Phia Saban). Before his death, Viserys also rode Balerion, though only for a year before his death.

Daemon Targaryen

Matt Smith as Daemon Targaryen in House of the Dragon
Image via HBO

Before marrying his niece, Daemon (Matt Smith) was her opponent in the fight for the Iron Throne, but his claim eventually went down the drain with the birth of Aegon II. Daemon initially marries Laena Velaryon, with whom he has two daughters, Baela (Bethany Antonia) and Rhaena (Phoebe Campbell). After Laena kills herself via dragon in order not to die in childbirth, he marries Rhaenyra, with whom he has three children, including the stillborn Visenya. He rides the uniquely long-necked Caraxes, the Blood Wyrm.


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Rhaenyra Targaryen

Emma D'Arcy house of the dragon featured
Image via HBO Max

The only living child of King Viserys and Aemma Arryn, Rhaenyra is the match that lights the fire of the Dance of the Dragons. It is her father naming her heir in lieu of his brother Daemon that leads the noble houses of Westeros to split up and fight in the bloody war that we have just seen the beginning of in House of the Dragon. Rhaenyra gets married twice over the course of her life and has three children both with Laenor Velaryon (at least publicly) and her uncle-husband Daemon. She rides the yellow-gold dragon Syrax.

Baela Targaryen

Bethany Antonia as Baela Targaryen in House of the Dragon Season 2
Image via HBO

Baela is the older of Daemon’s two daughter by Laena Velaryon. Baela, whose dragon is Moondancer, is clearly her father’s favorite child. She is betrothed to Jacaerys Velaryon (Harry Collett) and sides with Rhaenyra during the Dance of the Dragons.

Rhaena Targaryen

Phoebe Campbell as Rhaena Targaryen in House of the Dragon
Image via HBO

Rhaena is the younger of Daemon’s two daughters. In Fire & Blood, she is Baela’s twin, but both versions of the character have an insecurity in common. Rhaena has no dragon. In the book, hers dies during infancy, while in the show it seems like her dragon egg never hatched. Eventually, though, Rhaena does manage to bond with a dragon named Morning, making her the last dragonrider. She was betrothed to Lucerys Velaryon (Elliot Grihault) before his death.

Jacaerys Targaryen

Harry Collett as Jacaerys Velaryon in House of the Dragon
Image via HBO

The eldest son of Rhaenyra and Laenor Velaryon is actually the bastard son of Harwin Strong (Ryan Corr). Jacaerys Targaryen, or Jace, as he is known by his family, is supposed to be the heir to the throne following his mother’s reign. As of the end of Season 1, he is flying north on his dragon Vermax to Winterfell to gain the alliance of the Starks.

Lucerys Velaryon

Elliot Grihault in House of the Dragon
Image via HBO

The middle child of Rhaenyra and Laenor/Harwin, Lucerys is killed in the last episode of Season 1 of House of the Dragon by his uncle, Aemond Targaryen. He’s riding on his dragon, Arrax, near Storm’s End when Aemond attacks him with his own mount, Vhagar. Aemond doesn’t mean to kill his nephew, merely threaten him, but the result is disastrous either way: with one bite, Vhagar splits Arrax in the middle and swallows poor Luke whole.

Joffrey Velaryon

Joffrey Velaryon from House of the Dragon Season 1
Image via HBO

The youngest son of Rhaenyra and Laenor/Harwin, Jofrrey’s true parentage is in the color of his hair. He is named after Laenor’s former lover who died at the hands of Criston Cole (Fabien Frankel). His baby dragon is named Tyraxes.

Aegon Targaryen

Tom Glynn-Carney as Aegon Targaryen in House of the Dragon
Image via HBO

The firstborn son of King Viserys and Queen Alicent is is Aegon II. His birth is what eventually leads to the beginning of the so-called Dance of the Dragons, as the presence of a direct male heir to the king weakened Rhaenyra’s claim to the Iron Throne. Despite being a horrible man who enjoys watching his own baby bastards fight to the death in makeshift arenas and regularly sexually assaults his servants, Aegon is crowned king in the final episode of Season 1 of House of the Dragon. He rides the dragon Sunfyre, considered one of the most beautiful dragons.

Helaena Targaryen

Phia Saban as Helaena Targaryen in House of the Dragon Season 2
Image via HBO

Helaena Targaryen is the second child of King Viserys and Queen Alicent. She’s a dragon dreamer, meaning she has visions of the future. She’s married to her brother Aegon II, with whom she has three children. Her dragon is the blue dragon Dreamfyre.

Aemond Targaryen

Ewan Mitchell as Aemond Targaryen, surrounded by smoke in House of the Dragon
Image via HBO

Aemond “One-Eye” gained his unfortunate nickname after losing his left eye in a childhood fight with his nephew Lucerys over the latter’s parentage. He eventually gets back at Luke in the worst way possible by accidentally killing him with his dragon, Vhagar, effectively making him a kinslayer — one of the worst taboos in Westeros. There are rumors around King’s Landing that Aemond may be the true father of his sister Helaena’s children.

Daeron Targaryen

So far absent from House of the Dragon, Daeron Targaryen is the youngest son of King Viserys and Queen Alicent Hightower. He has a brief appearance in the show’s opening credits and is believed to be in Old Town with the rest of the Hightower family. Perhaps he’ll make an appearance in Season 2, as he is supposed to support his brother Aegon’s claim to the throne in the Dance of the Dragons. As a dragonrider himself, he can offer a lot of support to Aegon II’s cause. His dragon is the dark blue dragon Tessarion.

Jaehaerys and Jaehaera Targaryen

Helaena's children, Jaehaerys and Jaehaera, in House of the Dragon Season 1
Image via HBO

Yet another pair of little ones that still don’t have much to do in the series, Jaehaerys and Jaehaera are the twin children of King Aegon II, who may or may not be a usurper, and his sister-wife, Helaena. The pair also has a younger brother by the name of Maelor who still hasn’t made an appearance on the show.

Aegon III, Viserys II, and Visenya Targaryen

Though so far none of them has had an important role in the show, Aegon III, Viserys II, and Visenya are the three children of Princess — or Queen, depending on your inclinations — Rhaenyra Targaryen and her uncle-husband Daemon. Out of the three kids, only Aegon and Viserys live long enough to become, Spoiler, kings in their own rights in the books. Visenya does not survive past her birth. During Aegon III’s reign, dragons are seen for the last time, which earns the king the moniker of Dragonbane.

Aemon Targaryen

Peter Vaughan in Game of Thrones
Image via HBO

A maester and a member of the Night’s Watch, Aemon (Peter Vaughan) is one of the six children of King Maekar I and his wife, Dyanna Dayne. He’s a younger brother to King Aegon V, which, in turn, makes him a great-uncle to King Aerys II (David Rintoul), the Mad King. Apart from Viserys and Daenerys, he’s one of the only known Targaryens living at the beginning of Game of Thrones. He’s also one of the few characters in both the HBO show and the A Song of Ice and Fire series of novels to die of natural causes.

Rhaella Targaryen

Rhaella is one of the children of Shaera and Jaehaerys II. She was wedded to her own brother, Aerys II, with whom she had three children: Rhaegar (Wilf Scolding), Viserys (Harry Lloyd), and Daenerys (Emilia Clarke). Although they had children, the marriage was a disastrous pairing.

Aerys II Targaryen

David Rintoul as the Mad King Aerys II Targaryen in Game of Thrones
Image via HBO

Perhaps best known as the Mad King, Aerys II Targaryen was the one sitting on the Iron Throne during Robert’s Rebellion. He was killed by a member of his own Kingsguard, Jaime Lannister (Nikolaj Coster-Waldau), after ordering his men to burn down the town of King’s Landing alongside its people. Aerys II is the son of King Jaehaerys II and his sister-wife, Shaera Targaryen. He is the last Tarrgaryen to sit on the Iron Throne before Game of Thrones.

Rhaegar Targaryen

Rhaegar Targaryen and Lyanna Stark marry each other in secret by a lake in 'Game of Thrones' Season 7, Episode 7
Image via HBO

The firstborn son of King Aerys II and Rhaella, Rhaegar was killed during Robert’s Rebellion, considered guilty of the so-called kidnapping of Lyanna Stark (Aisling Franciosi). Before secretly marrying Lyanna, Rhaegar was married to Elia Martell, a Dornish princess with whom he had two children, Rhaenys and Aegon. In the show, he is Jon Snow’s (Kit Haringon) biological father, giving him a claim to the throne.

Viserys Targaryen

Harry Lloyd as Viserys Targaryen in Game of Thrones Season 1
Image via HBO

The horrid brother of Daenerys and Rhaegar is the middle child of Aerys and Rhaella. Forced into exile at a young age, following the victory of Robert Baratheon’s (Mark Addy) forces, he married his sister to the Dothraki named Drogo (Jason Momoa) in the hopes of getting an army that would help him storm Westeros and put him on the Iron Throne. All he got, however, was a pan of liquid, boiling gold thrown onto his head after screaming bloody murder that he needed a golden crown.

Daenerys Targaryen

The Stormborn, Mother of Dragons, Breaker of Chains, etc. Daenerys is the youngest daughter of the Mad King. She is the sole survivor of the Targaryen lineage until the truth about Jon Snow’s parentage hits the Westerosi fan. She was briefly married to Khal Drogo with whom she had only a stillborn child. Thus, she gives most of her motherly love to her three dragons, Drogon, Rhaegon, and Viserion, who were the first of their kind born after they were deemed extinct centuries prior to events of Game of Thrones, during the reign Aegon III.

Rhaenys and Aegon Targaryen

Young Rhaenys and Aegon were the children of Rhaegar Targaryen and his first wife, Elia Martell. They were killed horrifically alongside their mother by the Mountain (Hafþór Júlíus Björnsson) during Robert’s Rebellion.

Jon Snow

Kit Harington as Jon Snow in The Long Night episode of Game of Thrones
Image via HBO

Raised as the bastard son of Lord Eddard Stark (Sean Bean), Jon Snow is the product of the relationship that gave rise to Robert’s Rebellion, which eventually put an end to the Targaryen dynasty and led King Robert Baratheon to the Iron Throne. Obviously, we know the rest of the story but for most of the show, Jon Snow is more a Stark than a Targaryen. Regardless, his biological parents and his bloodline give him a right to the Iron Throne before his aunt, Daenerys.

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