Aegon V Targaryen

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House Targaryen.svg King
Aegon V Targaryen
the Unlikely
House Targaryen.svg
Aegon V by Amok©
Reign 233259 AC
Full name Aegon Targaryen the Fifth of His Name
Predecessor Maekar I Targaryen
Successor Jaehaerys II Targaryen
Personal Information
  • Aegon the Unlikely
  • Aegon the Fortunate
  • Egg
  • The Prince Who Was An Egg
Born 200 AC[1]
King's Landing[2]
Died 259 AC
Dynasty House Targaryen
Queen Betha Blackwood
Issue Duncan Targaryen
Jaehaerys II Targaryen
Shaera Targaryen
Daeron Targaryen
Rhaelle Targaryen
Father Maekar I Targaryen
Mother Dyanna Dayne
Played by Dexter Sol Ansell[3]
TV series A Knight of the Seven Kingdoms: The Hedge Knight: Season 1

Aegon V Targaryen was a Lord of the Seven Kingdoms and the fifteenth Targaryen to sit the Iron Throne as King of the Andals, the Rhoynar, and the First Men.[4] In his youth, he went by the nickname Egg and squired for Ser Duncan the Tall.

Aegon became king after a Great Council bypassed a number of candidates earlier in the line of succession, and after his elder brother, Maester Aemon, refused the throne. As the fourth son of Maekar I, himself a fourth son, Aegon was called Aegon the Unlikely.[5]

Appearance and Character

Aegon had large eyes which could appear dark blue,[6] but were actually deep and dark and purple.[7] The boy was pasty faced and skinny.[6] Because of his silver-gold hair, he shaved his head to hide his identity while a squire, making his eyes appear huge on his bald head.[6] Aegon wore a wide-brimmed floppy straw hat while squiring for Ser Duncan the Tall.[7]

According to a semi-canonical source, Aegon in his thirties had shoulder-length hair. Tall, slender, and handsome, he looked strong yet kindly. His crown was the simple gold circlet worn by Viserys II and Aegon III before him.[8]

Aegon was bold, compassionate toward animals, and well educated in his youth.[6][7] He was known to lie[6] and quick with a retort,[9] however, and was proud of being a noble.[7] Some considered him insolent.[9] Aegon grew to become a kindly and approachable man[8] beloved by smallfolk.[10] Maester Aemon, who gave the nickname Egg to his brother,[6] believed that Aegon had innocence and sweetness.[11]


Early life

Aegon was born the fourth son and fifth child of Prince Maekar Targaryen and his wife, Dyanna Dayne.[12] Aegon served at court in King's Landing for two years as a page, sometimes attending to the small council.[7] Aegon owned a dragon egg, which was colored with green and white swirls and had been placed in his cradle with him when he was a babe. Aegon and his elder brother, Prince Aemon, hoped their eggs would hatch so they could become dragonriders. Aegon kept his egg at Summerhall.[9] The brothers recreated the Battle of the Redgrass Field with painted soldiers on Maester Melaquin's table.[9]

Aegon loathed his brother, the cruel and sadistic Aerion, who threw Aegon's pet cat down a well. Aerion once visited Aegon in his bedroom during the dead of night, put a knife to Aegon's privates, and joked about removing his genitals so he would become a girl whom Aerion could marry.[6] Once Aegon's sister Rhae slipped a love potion into his drink so that he would marry her and not their sister Daella,[7] to whom he might have been betrothed.[N 1] Aegon did not wish to marry, instead dreaming of becoming a knight of the Kingsguard, who are sworn not to wed.[7]

Tourney at Ashford Meadow

Ser Duncan the Tall and Aegon, by Marc Simonetti ©

Aegon was supposed to squire for his eldest brother, Daeron, in the tourney at Ashford Meadow, but Daeron had no interest in jousting and instead drank himself into a stupor at an inn. Daeron shaved Aegon's head to prevent the boy's distinctive Targaryen hair from being recognized by men sent by their father, Prince Maekar.[6] When the hedge knight Dunk visited the inn, he assumed Aegon was a stableboy. Calling himself "Egg", the disguised Aegon assumed that Dunk was short for "Duncan", which Dunk accepted. Aegon was impressed by the humble hedge knight and followed him. Ser Duncan the Tall agreed to let Egg serve as his squire during the tourney.[6]

Duncan was arrested and sentenced to fight a trial by battle after attacking Egg's elder brother, Prince Aerion Targaryen. Because the battle was to be a Trial of Seven, Aegon convinced Ser Lyonel Baratheon to fight on behalf of Duncan. Aegon's uncle, Prince Baelor Breakspear, also fought alongside Duncan during the trial, but Baelor died of a wound inflicted by Prince Maekar, Baelor's brother and Aegon's father, who had fought on behalf of Aerion and House Targaryen.[6]

Maekar, the Prince of Summerhall, wished Aegon to be trained as a knight, but Aegon would only agree if Duncan were the knight who trained him. When Maekar offered Duncan a place at the garrison of Summerhall, Dunk declined and agreed to take Aegon on only if Aegon accompanied him as his squire. Aegon would live humbly, but Duncan thought it would make Aegon a better man than his brothers, Aerion and Daeron. Thus, Aegon served as a squire to the Duncan under his nickname "Egg".[6]


Aegon kept his identity secret from the public while squiring for Duncan, and he kept hidden in his boot a signet ring from his father, Maekar Targaryen, Prince of Summerhall.[7][9] While escorting merchants in Dorne from the Prince's Pass to Vaith, Chestnut died while Egg was on the horse's back. The pair traveled aboard a poleboat on the Greenblood toward the Planky Town, and during the journey orphan girls rubbed Aegon's head for luck. Dunk and Egg then sailed on White Lady to Oldtown, where Aegon received the mule Maester, a gift from his brother, Maester Aemon.[7]

A little less than two years after Ashford Meadow, Aegon and Duncan served Ser Eustace Osgrey of Standfast during his conflict with Rohanne Webber, Lady of Coldmoat, over the Chequy Water. At Coldmoat, Egg verified for the illiterate Dunk that a royal parchment from King Daeron II Targaryen had granted the stream to Lord Wyman Webber. When Rohanne demanded that Eustace turn over Ser Bennis of the Brown Shield, Duncan showed Aegon's signet ring to her in an unsuccessful attempt to avert hostilities. After Duncan slew Ser Lucas Inchfield in trial by battle, Aegon pulled Duncan from the stream and protected the wounded hedge knight during his recovery. Eustace and Rohanne chose to wed to end their conflict, and Egg attended Eustace during the wedding feast.[7] Rohanne gifted Aegon with a sorrel palfrey which he named Rain.[9]

Second Blackfyre Rebellion

After visiting Stoney Sept, Aegon and Ser Duncan the Tall attended the wedding tourney at Whitewalls in 212 AC. Egg struck the squire of Ser Mallor after an insinuation that Prince Maekar Targaryen was a kinslayer who might one day intentionally kill King Aerys I Targaryen.[9] Aegon attended to Duncan, who called himself the Gallows Knight, during his joust with Ser Uthor Underleaf. Egg was distraught after Dunk's defeat, as the hedge knight would have to forfeit to Uthor his sword, armor, and horse, Thunder.[9]

During the Second Blackfyre Rebellion, Egg revealed his signet ring to Maester Lothar, who turned the boy over to Lord Ambrose Butterwell and Lord Frey. After Aegon claimed that his father was marching on Whitewalls with an army, Ambrose fled to the castle's sept with Aegon while Frey returned to the Twins. Duncan slew Ser Tommard Heddle when the knight tried to take the prince hostage. Dunk then told Egg to escape Whitewalls if he could. The next morning, the Blackfyre conspirators surrendered when Lord Brynden Rivers arrived with a royal host, with Aegon in his company. Aegon convinced Bloodraven to lend gold to Duncan so he could ransom his possessions back from Uthor Underleaf.[9]

Later life

Aegon married Lady Betha Blackwood in 220 AC. The marriage at the time provoked no opposition as Aegon was very low in the line of succession. They married for love and eventually had five children together. Aegon named his first-born son Duncan to honor his friend, Ser Duncan the Tall.[13][10]

In 221 AC, Aegon's uncle, King Aerys I Targaryen died with no issue and was followed on the Iron Throne by his last living brother, Prince Maekar Targaryen. Aegon and his brothers were summoned to court by King Maekar.[5]

According to a semi-canon source, Aegon participated in the suppression of the Peake Uprising in 233 AC, with Tion Lannister as his squire. The prince knighted the mortally wounded Tywald Lannister, Tion's twin, during the battle.[14]

King Maekar I was also killed at Starpike during the rebellion. With Maekar dead, it was unclear who should be king since two of Aegon's older brothers had died before his father. Daeron left a feeble-witted daughter named Vaella and Aerion an infant son, so a Great Council was called to choose the king. Aegon seemed the logical choice but many lords considered him "half a peasant" due to his youth among the smallfolk. The council approached Aegon's older brother, Maester Aemon, but he refused, stating the crown should be given to Aegon.[15]

King Aegon V

Aegon was crowned Lord of the Seven Kingdoms in 233 AC when he was thirty-three years old. During most, if not all, of Aegon V's reign, his old friend Ser Duncan the Tall served as Lord Commander of the Kingsguard.

Aegon's first act as king was the arrest of Lord Brynden Rivers, the Hand of the King, for the murder of Aenys Blackfyre, as Bloodraven had offered Aenys safe conduct to Westeros for the Great Council but had Aenys executed when he arrived in the capital.[15] Though all were glad another Blackfyre pretender was dead, Aegon had to punish Lord Bloodraven to prove the word of the Iron Throne was not worthless. Although Brynden was sentenced to death, Aegon allowed him to join the Night's Watch. Aegon's brother, Maester Aemon, decided to join the Watch as well, to prevent any plots in which he would be used against his brother. Brynden and Aemon were joined by many of Bloodraven's personal guard, the Raven's Teeth, as well as prisoners released from dungeons by the king.[10][16]

Aegon's reign began during a harsh winter which lasted from 230 AC until 236 AC. The benevolent Aegon sent massive shipments of food and grain to aid starving northmen, though there were those who felt he provided too much aid. The end of winter saw the return of the Blackfyre Pretenders, with the Fourth Blackfyre Rebellion taking place in 236 AC. Daemon III Blackfyre attempted to seize the Iron Throne with the Golden Company, but few rallied to his side. Aegon and his sons rode to meet and repel the invaders, and Duncan the Tall slew Daemon in single combat, ending the rebellion. Aegor Rivers, known as Bittersteel, managed to flee with the remnants of the Golden Company across the narrow sea.[10]

Aegon V spent much of his reign dealing with uprisings. On three occasions, the Iron Throne had to intervene in the westerlands due to the inferior and inept leadership of Lord Tytos Lannister of Casterly Rock.[17] Most of Aegon's troubles resulted from his efforts to improve the lives of the smallfolk, whom he had interacted with while squiring for Duncan. Although the smallfolk loved Aegon for his reforms and granting of rights and protections, high lords felt their powers over peasantry was diminished and curtailed by these new reforms. Lacking the dragons controlled by early Targaryen kings, Aegon reluctantly compromised with the recalcitrant lords on several issues.

Family Betrothals

King Aegon V and Queen Betha Blackwood, by Chillyravenart ©

Aegon faced renewed troubles in his reign caused because of his sons.[18] Convinced the Targaryen practice of incestuous marriage was harmful after spending time with smallfolk, Aegon and his queen, Betha Blackwood, betrothed four of their children to some of the Great Houses of the Seven Kingdoms in 237 AC Their eldest son and heir, Prince Duncan, was betrothed to the daughter of Lord Lyonel Baratheon of Storm's End. Prince Jaehaerys, Aegon's second son, was betrothed to Lady Celia Tully, the daughter of the Lord of Riverrun. Aegon's youngest son, Prince Daeron, was betrothed to Lady Olenna Redwyne of the Arbor, when both children were nine years old. In addition, Aegon's eldest daughter, Princess Shaera, was betrothed to Luthor Tyrell, the heir to Highgarden. The proposed marriages would have won Aegon much support for his reforms, but his children had inherited his willfulness and their mother's stubbornness.[19][13]

Beginning in 239 AC, Prince Duncan fell in love with and eventually wed the mysterious Jenny of Oldstones. King Aegon, the small council, the Grand Maester, and the High Septon forced Duncan to choose between the peasant girl or the Iron Throne. The prince choose his wife and abdicated as Prince of Dragonstone, making his younger brother, Prince Jaehaerys, the new heir. With Duncan refusing to marry the daughter of Lord Baratheon, Storm's End briefly rose in rebellion, which ended when Ser Duncan the Tall of the Kingsguard forced Lord Lyonel to yield during trial by combat. King Aegon pardoned Lyonel and betrothed his daughter, Princess Rhaelle, to Lyonel's heir, Ormund. Aegon sent Rhaelle to Storm's End as Lyonel's cupbearer and companion to his wife.[10]

While King Aegon disliked the Targaryen practice of marriage through incest, Prince Jaehaerys and his sister, Princess Shaera, desired each other from a young age. With Duncan marrying Jenny as precedent, Jaehaerys and Shaera secretly wed and consummated their marriage in 240 AC, leaving Aegon to deal with the anger of Houses Tully and Tyrell.[10]

Though betrothed for nine years to Lady Olenna Redwyne, Prince Daeron broke his betrothal in 246 AC when he was eighteen years old. Daeron remained unwed, instead preferring the companionship of Ser Jeremy Norridge, a young knight whom he had befriended when they were squires at Highgarden. Daeron and Jeremy perished in battle in 251 AC, crushing a rebellion led by the Rat, the Hawk, and the Pig.[10]


In 258 AC, nine outlaws, exiles, pirates and sellswords hoping to carve out individual kingdoms came together in the Disputed Lands of Essos. Among this Band of Nine was Maelys I Blackfyre, the last of the Blackfyres. Because the outlaws had no great urgency, King Aegon remained intent on his reign and on dragons in particular. Against the advice of his friends and counselors, Aegon V became convinced that only with dragons could he force the lords of the Seven Kingdoms to accept his decrees that granted freedoms, rights, and protections to the smallfolk.[10]

This eventually led to the tragedy of Summerhall in 259 AC, in which Aegon perished while trying to hatch dragon eggs. His son, Prince Duncan the Small; his friend and Lord Commander of the Kingsguard, Ser Duncan the Tall; and others of the royal court also perished in the fire.[10] Aegon was succeeded by his second son and heir, Jaehaerys II.

Many of the laws, rights and protections King Aegon V had granted and bestowed upon the smallfolk were later undone during the reign of King Aerys II by the Hand of the King, Lord Tywin Lannister.[20]

Recent Events

A Feast for Crows

En route toward Oldtown, the dying Maester Aemon has fever dreams of being young and in the company of his late brother.[16][21]

A Dance with Dragons

Before departing Castle Black, Aemon told Jon Snow, the new Lord Commander of the Night's Watch, of his instructions to Aegon years ago: "Kill the boy and let the man be born."[11]

Quotes by Aegon

Dunk and Egg, by Chillyravenart ©

Dunk: I have no need of a squire.

Aegon: Every knight needs a squire. You look as though you need one more than most.

Dunk: And you look as though you need a clout in the ear, it seems to me.[6]

Dunk and Aegon

Duncan: I never heard of a Prince Egg.
Aegon: It's short for Aegon. My brother Aemon named me Egg.[6]

Duncan the Tall and Aegon

I don't want a wife, I want to be a knight of the Kingsguard and live only to serve and defend the king.[7]

—Aegon to Duncan the Tall

Someday the dragons will return. My brother Daeron's dreamed of it, and King Aerys read it in a prophecy. Maybe it will be my egg that hatches. That would be splendid.[9]

—Aegon to Duncan the Tall

Quotes about Aegon

I will take your son as squire, Your Grace, but not at Summerhall. Not for a year or two. He's seen sufficient of castles, I would judge. I'll have him only if I can take him on the road with me. He'll ride my steed, wear my old cloak, and he'll keep my sword sharp and my mail scoured. We'll sleep in inns and stables, and now and again in the halls of some landed knight or lesser lordling, and maybe under trees when we must.[6]

This egg had been hatched of dragons, not of chickens.[7]

—thoughts of Duncan the Tall

Brynden: Your squire is insolent, ser. You ought to beat that out of him.

Duncan: I've tried, m'lord. He's a prince, though.

Brynden: What he is, is a dragon.[9]

A bloody-handed tyrant intent on depriving us of our gods-given rights and liberties.[10]

—a lord regarding Aegon's reforms

Aegon the Unlikely, they called him, born the fourth son of a fourth son.[5]

Egg had an innocence to him, a sweetness we all loved. Kill the boy within you, I told him the day I took ship for the Wall. It takes a man to rule. An Aegon, not an Egg. Kill the boy and let the man be born.[11]

All three of the sons of the fifth Aegon had wed for love in defiance of their father's wishes. And because that unlikely monarch had followed his heart when he chose his queen, he allowed his sons to have their way, making bitter enemies when he might have made fast friends. Treason and turmoil followed, as night follows day, ending at Summerhall in sorcery, fire and grief.[13]

—thoughts of Barristan Selmy



Daeron II
Aerys I
Maekar I
Kiera of
[N 2]
Kiera of
[N 2]
Aegon V
Stillborn sons
House Targaryen.svg
  1. "so I'd marry [Rhae] instead of [Daella]" can be interpreted to mean that Aegon and Daella were betrothed
  2. Kiera of Tyrosh was widowed when Valarr Targaryen died from the Great Spring Sickness; some time later she married his cousin Daeron.


Aegon V
of Oldstones
Jaehaerys II
Aerys II
House Baratheon.svg
zo Loraq



  1. See the Aegon V Targaryen calculation.
  2. 2.0 2.1 George R. R. Martin's A World of Ice and Fire, Aegon V Targaryen.
  3. The Hollywood Reporter: Dunk and Egg cast (April 5, 2024)
  4. A Game of Thrones, Appendix.
  5. 5.0 5.1 5.2 A Clash of Kings, Chapter 6, Jon I.
  6. 6.00 6.01 6.02 6.03 6.04 6.05 6.06 6.07 6.08 6.09 6.10 6.11 6.12 6.13 The Hedge Knight.
  7. 7.00 7.01 7.02 7.03 7.04 7.05 7.06 7.07 7.08 7.09 7.10 7.11 The Sworn Sword.
  8. 8.0 8.1 So Spake Martin: Targaryen Kings, November 1, 2005
  9. 9.00 9.01 9.02 9.03 9.04 9.05 9.06 9.07 9.08 9.09 9.10 The Mystery Knight.
  10. 10.0 10.1 10.2 10.3 10.4 10.5 10.6 10.7 10.8 10.9 The World of Ice & Fire, The Targaryen Kings: Aegon V.
  11. 11.0 11.1 11.2 A Dance with Dragons, Chapter 7, Jon II.
  12. The World of Ice & Fire, Appendix: Targaryen Lineage.
  13. 13.0 13.1 13.2 A Dance with Dragons, Chapter 67, The Kingbreaker.
  14. The World of Ice & Fire: The Westerlands (unabridged).
  15. 15.0 15.1 The World of Ice & Fire, The Targaryen Kings: Maekar I.
  16. 16.0 16.1 A Feast for Crows, Chapter 15, Samwell II.
  17. The World of Ice & Fire, The Westerlands: House Lannister under the Dragons.
  18. George R. R. Martin's A World of Ice and Fire.
  19. The World of Ice & Fire, The Targaryen Kings: Aegon V.
  20. The World of Ice & Fire, The Targaryen Kings: Aerys II.
  21. A Feast for Crows, Chapter 26, Samwell III.
Preceded by 15th
King of the Andals, the Rhoynar, and the First Men
Lord of the Seven Kingdoms
Protector of the Realm

233259 AC
Succeeded by