Regency of Aegon III

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The regency of King Aegon the Third lasted from the year 131 AC to 136 AC while the king was in his minority. It was a period of numerous political conflicts that occurred among the council of regents and several Hands of the King.

Prelude

Young King Aegon III Targaryen ascended the Iron Throne in 131 AC, at the age of eleven, after losing most of his family to the unprecedented internal conflict and civil war that came to be known as the Dance of the Dragons.[1]

Several Regents and Hands ruled in Aegon's name for the first five years of his reign until the King came of age. During the regency numerous political schemes, plots and even a few assassinations happened as the Regents and their supporters vied for political power.[1]

History

Begin of Regency

After witnessing the horrific death of his mother late in the war, Aegon had become a quite sullen, melancholic boy who spent days alone brooding. He was used as a pawn as the Lords and Regents of the small council all sought to gain a political stronghold.[1]

The regency of King Aegon started with seven individual regents, who became known as the Council of Seven. Of these seven regents, only Grand Maester Munkun served during the entire regency. Other regents, and Hands of the King, resigned, were replaced, or died. Aegon's reign began in the second year of a harsh winter, which would last until 135 AC. Winter Fever would take multiple of Aegon's regents.[1]

The first of Aegon's regents to die was Lord Corlys Velaryon, who died in 132 AC of old age. His grandson and successor Lord Alyn Velaryon, had hoped to take his grandfather's place on the council, but was denied. That same year, Lord Royce Caron gave up his place on the council. Ser Torrhen Manderly gave his his place on the council as well that year, to return home to White Harbor, following the deaths of his father and brother from Winter Fever.[1]

In 133 AC, Winter Fever took Ser Tyland Lannister, who had returned from the Free Cities the year before, and had been named Hand of the King, a position which he held and fulfilled capably, despite his mutilations. Lord Roland Westerling, one of the regents, died in 133 AC of Winter Fever as well, and was subsequently replaced by Lord Thaddeus Rowan.[1]

Lord Unwin Peake had felt slighted when he had not been amongst the original seven regents. Yet in 132 AC, he was given Lord Corlys Velaryon's position. He rose to the position of Hand in 133 AC, following the death of Ser Tyland Lannister. In his position of power, he saw his kin hold many high office, and endeavored to weaken his rivals by any means at hand.[1]

King Aegon III had married his cousin, Princess Jaehaera Targaryen, the sole surviving child of King Aegon II Targaryen, following the end of the war. She apparently killed herself in 133 AC, when she threw herself out of her window and was impaled on the spikes of Maegor's Holdfast. Whilst officially named a suicide, there are some who question the manner of her death. Some whisper that Jaehaera had been murdered, and one of the suspects named was Ser Mervyn Flowers of the Kingsguard, the bastard brother of Lord Unwin, who had been the guard at Jaehaera's door when she died. Court-fool Mushroom suggests that Flowers did not do the deed himself, but had allowed for someone else to push her out of the window. Maester Yandel speculates the assassin was Tessario, a sellsword of the Free Cities in Lord Unwin's service.[1]

Following the death of Queen Jaehaera, Lord Unwin attempted to marry his own daughter to King Aegon. When the regents had stopped his attempts, the Hand arranged a ball, where a thousand maids were presented to King Aegon. Ladies Rhaena and Baela Targaryen presented a cousin of theirs, Lady Daenaera Velaryon, at the time only six years old. Aegon choose her as his new Queen, which greatly frustrated Lord Peake. He attempted to have the King's choice put aside, but the other regents, as well as Aegon, opposed him. Lord Peake threatened to resign as Hand of the King in an attempt to bend the other regents to his will, but they were only happy to oblige. Thus Lord Peake's resignation was accepted and he was replaced as Hand of the King by Lord Thaddeus Rowan in 134 AC.[1]

The Red Kraken

Lord Alyn Velaryon, after having been denied Lord Corlys' place on the council, was made to sail against the Stepstones. Against the hopes of Lord Peake, who had then still been Hand, Alyn was victorious in the Stepstones. When he returned to King's Landing, his newborn fame proved divisive. The regents, despite Peake's protests, gave Alyn honors and rewards. Still as Hand, Lord Peake in the end convinced the regents to dispatch Alyn to the Westerlands, to deal with Dalton Greyjoy, almost certainly hoping it would result in Alyn's death or defeat. Instead, it became the first of six great voyages by Lord Alyn.[1]

Lord Dalton Greyjoy, the Red Kraken, had joined the war on the side of Queen Rhaenyra Targaryen, and had been allowed to raid the western coasts.[2] Though the war ended, Greyjoy's raids did not. Greyjoy was eventually killed on Fair Isle, when a girl named Tess opened his throat with a dagger. As Dalton had never married, a bloody struggle began within hours of his death.[3]

Lady Johanna Lannister extracted revenge for all the suffering of the westerlands in 134 AC, when a Lannister force, with the aid of Ser Leo Costayne, attacked the Iron Isles. Entire villages were put to the sword, man, woman, and child. Most of the attacking host was lost, including Lord Costayne, but those who returned home returned with plunder - and amongst the highborn hostages, was one of Dalton's salt sons. Lady Johanna Lannister had the boy gelded and mutilated, and forced him to be her son's fool.[3]

Return of Prince Viserys

The King's younger brother, Prince Viserys, was believed to be dead by many. His return to King's Landing was one of the few joy's of King Aegon III. Having been found in Lys by Lord Alyn Velaryon, a huge ransom was paid, and the prince was allowed to return to King's Landing. With him, he brought his new wife, Larra Rogare, a wealthy daughter of the powerful and ambitious Rogare family. Larra's family owned the Rogare Bank, so powerful at the time that it was greater than the Iron Bank of Braavos.[1]

The Rogare family soon became involved in the conflicts of this period. Accusations of wrongdoing were spread back and forth by many parties. Lord Thaddeus Rowan was accused of treason and being involved in a plot with the Rogare family and was tortured for information. Somehow, Ser Marston Waters became Hand of the King despite being a member of the Kingsguard, and sent men to arrest Lady Larra after he arrested her brothers. The young King Aegon defended his brother and his brother's wife and her family, however, and refused to give her up, which led to a siege in Maegor's Holdfast for eighteen days. Eventually, recalling his duty, Marston attempted to fulfill his King's command and arrest those who falsely implicated the Rogares and Lord Rowan. Waters himself was killed attempting to arrest his sworn brother, Ser Mervyn Flowers.[1]

End of Regency

Grandmaester Munkun briefly took over as Hand of the King and restored order until new regents were appointed. Lord Torrhen Manderly was made the new Hand of the King, and Willam Stackspear, Marq Merryweather and Lorent Grandison were chosen by a Great Council to serve on the council in 136 AC.[1]

The regency ended on the day of King Aegon III Targaryens sixteenth nameday, when the King entered the small council chambers and dismissed all of the regents and his Hand of the King.[1]

Council of Regents

The regency council of Aegon III, as originally constituted, consisted of:[1]

Subsequent replacements:

Regents chosen by lot at the Great Council of 136:

Hands of the King:

References and Notes

  1. 1.00 1.01 1.02 1.03 1.04 1.05 1.06 1.07 1.08 1.09 1.10 1.11 1.12 1.13 1.14 The World of Ice & Fire, The Targaryen Kings: Aegon III.
  2. The World of Ice & Fire, The Targaryen Kings: Aegon II.
  3. 3.0 3.1 The World of Ice & Fire, The Iron Islands: The Red Kraken.