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House Baratheon of King's Landing

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House Baratheon of King's Landing
House-Baratheon-of-King's Landing-Main-Shield
The crowned stag of Baratheon black on gold and the lion of Lannister golden on red combatant (Originally just The crowned stag of Baratheon before King Joffrey Baratheon ascended to the Iron Throne)
Military strength
Cadet branches
Date of founding
18 years
Ancestral weapon
"The King Joffrey Baratheon is neither a true king, nor a true Baratheon. He's your bastard son."
Robb Stark to Jaime Lannister[src]

House Baratheon of King's Landing is a cadet branch of the original House Baratheon of Storm's End and the royal house of Westeros since the defeat of and exile of the Targaryen dynasty following Robert's Rebellion.[1]

Their seat is the Red Keep in the city of King's Landing and their domains are the lands ruled directly by the Iron Throne, the Crownlands.

In reality, House Baratheon of King's Landing is a puppet of House Lannister.


Under Robert IEdit

House Baratheon of King's Landing

The royal family (from left to right): Myrcella, Tommen, Robert, Cersei, and Joffrey.

Robert Baratheon founded the new royal House after he deposed the last Targaryen king, Aerys the Mad, during the War of the Usurper. Afterwards, Robert ruled the Seven Kingdoms for seventeen prosperous and mostly peaceful years (barring the localized Greyjoy Rebellion which occurred eight years into his reign). To strengthen his powerbase, Robert entered into a marriage-alliance with the wealthy House Lannister, wedding Lord Tywin Lannister's daughter Cersei. Their first child died in infancy, but afterwards Cersei gave birth to three children: Joffrey, Myrcella, and Tommen.

After the mysterious and sudden death of Hand of the King Jon Arryn, Robert brought his old friend and wartime companion Eddard Stark, Lord of Winterfell, to serve as the new Hand of the King. Eddard eventually discovered the truth that Jon Arryn had died for: none of Cersei's children, including Joffrey, were Robert's children. Rather, they were all bastards of incest fathered by Cersei's own twin brother Jaime. Out of mercy, and his steadfast refusal to harm children, Eddard directly confronted Cersei with his discovery and warned her to flee Westeros with her children. In response, Cersei had Robert assassinated by having her cousin Lancel Lannister (serving as the king's squire) slip Robert very strong wine during a hunt. Robert's senses were dulled enough that a boar managed to fatally gore him. As soon as Robert passed, Cersei sat Joffrey on the Iron Throne, and demanded Stark's submission, but he ordered the Gold Cloaks to take the royal family into custody - not realizing that Janos Slynt and his men were already bought by the Lannisters and Petyr Baelish, who all betrayed Lord Stark, killing his remaining guards and arresting him. Cersei's plan was to force Eddard into signing a confession but be allowed to keep his life by joining the Night's Watch. However, on a sadistic whim, Joffrey ordered Lord Eddard beheaded on the very steps of the Great Sept of Baelor - a politically disastrous blunder which drove the North to openly declare its independence.

Under Joffrey IEdit

Joffrey's sigil

Joffrey's new heraldry for House Baratheon of King's Landing.

After Joffrey succeeded Robert as king, he changed the heraldry of his House from a crowned stag, to a crowned stag and a lion combatant, giving equal standing to his mother's family, House Lannister - indeed, slightly more than equal standing, as the lion's tail prominently crosses over into the stag's side of the heraldry, and hovers over the stag's head, implying the superiority of the Lannister lion. Metaphorically revealing Joffrey's "true colors", this reflects how he was never particularly close to Robert, while he was doted on and indulged by Cersei, so he always thought of himself more as a Lannister.

Soon after Joffrey took the throne, Stannis Baratheon sent letters across all of Westeros, revealing that Joffrey was a bastard of incest with no right to the throne. As it turned out, Eddard's letter revealing his discoveries to Stannis had successfully arrived on Dragonstone. Stannis therefore declared himself Robert's lawful successor as king, being the elder of Robert's two younger brothers.

Robert's youngest brother Renly Baratheon had already declared his claim to the throne as soon as Robert died, based solely on the fact that Joffrey was an insane monster unsuitable to rule, and Cersei Lannister's puppet. The rumors that Joffrey was a bastard of incest only served to strengthen Renly's claim.

While the two surviving Baratheon brothers bickered between themselves over which of the two of them had the better claim to the throne, virtually all of the lords from the Stormlands who were sworn to House Baratheon abandoned Joffrey to declare for either Renly or Stannis (mostly Renly, with a few declaring for Stannis). Other than a few court retainers in King's Landing, which were always more attached to the royal government than the Baratheons and Stormlands, "House Baratheon of King's Landing" contained essentially no links with the historical "House Baratheon" except for the name.

After arriving in King's Landing, Joffrey's uncle Tyrion arranged a marriage-alliance with House Martell of Dorne, in which Princess Myrcella would be betrothed to their youngest son, Trystane Martell, and wed when they come of age. This maintains Dorne's neutrality and at least keeps it from actively joining Joffrey's enemies, though the Martells do not outright send troops to aid his faction. Despite Cersei's protests, Myrcella is sent to Dorne via ship to secure the pact.

Stannis later arranged Renly's assassination, and he died without issue, leaving Stannis to take control of the Stormlands' armies and move against King's Landing. At the subsequent Battle of the Blackwater, Joffrey's forces managed to crush most of the armies of the Storm Lords, with the few survivors bending the knee or declaring their neutrality. Most of the Stormlands are occupied by Joffrey's forces as a result, though Storm's End itself has not yet fallen.

Soon afterwards, a new marriage agreement is proposed between Joffrey and Margaery Tyrell (Renly's widow), to cement the new Lannister-Tyrell alliance. Master of Coin Petyr Baelish is also sent to the Vale of Arryn to marry Lysa Arryn, confirming the Vale's neutrality as well. With Dorne also kept neutral through Myrcella's betrothal, and the loss of Stannis's army at the Blackwater, Joffrey's hold on the mainland of Westeros begins to tighten. The betrayal at the Red Wedding then brings a quick end to the Northern rebellion with the death of Robb Stark and destruction of his army. Joffrey's new allies the Boltons and Freys will replace the Starks and Tullys in the North and Riverlands, respectively. At this point Joffrey stands at the zenith of his power, having secured almost all of mainland Westeros: the only remaining opposition to his rule are Stannis on Dragonstone, the Iron Islands, and a few holdout River Lords such as Brynden Tully at Riverrun itself. However, for all of Joffrey's good fortune, his grandfather Tywin makes it abundantly clear during a Small Council meeting that Joffrey is merely his puppet, and that this is truly a Lannister victory.

The day of Joffrey and​ Margaery's wedding finally arrives and the future of the realm is on the brink of becoming fully secured by the joining of House Baratheon and House Tyrell. The ceremony takes place in the Great Sept of Baelor and is conducted by the High Septon in sight of Gods and men. Hours later at the wedding feast, Joffrey is poisoned by Olenna Tyrell, an act that was orchestrated by Littlefinger. In Joffrey's dying moments, he points a finger at Tyrion Lannister, seemingly accusing him of poisoning his wine.

After Joffrey's passing, Tyrion is seized by Kingsguard on the orders of Cersei and is taken to a cell to await his trial. Meanwhile, the Tyrells begin to set up another match between Margaery and Joffrey's heir presumptive, Tommen Baratheon, to once again assure the future of the realm under the rule of houses Baratheon and Tyrell. After an appropriate mourning period, Tommen ascends the throne.

Under Tommen IEdit

Almost immediately after Joffrey's death, Tywin Lannister begins to lecture Tommen on the traits of a good king. As Tommen has yet to come of age to rule in his own name, besides being rather timid and submissive by nature, Tywin is easily able to manipulate him, ensuring it is truly Tommen's grandfather who rules the Seven Kingdoms in all but name. After Tywin's death, however, authority over the realm was seized by Tommen's mother Cersei, who seeks to continue her rule as Queen Regent. Cersei was unable to derail Tommen's marriage to Margaery Tyrell, who became the new queen consort.

Cersei avoids naming a new Hand of the King, and resists expanding the Small Council. Cersei's rule is challenged by her uncle Kevan Lannister, who refuses to go along with her farcical leadership and returns to the Westerlands until Tommen himself calls him to serve. Margaery was in the midst of convincing Tommen to send Cersei back to Casterly Rock when Cersei orchestrated the arrest of Loras Tyrell by the newly reformed Faith Militant. The situation then ballooned out of control, with first Margaery, then Cersei herself being arrested by the Faith. These developments effectively left the young, untested Tommen ruling with only Pycelle and Qyburn to assist him. Pycelle, intent on restoring some semblance of control and determined to keep Qyburn out of power, uses his authority as Grand Maester to summon Kevan back as Hand of the King. Cersei eventually agrees to undergo the Walk of atonement to be allowed back into the Red Keep, but once there, is kept under house arrest and denied access to the Small Council. Cersei and Pycelle fight for control over Tommen, who decides to begin at least trying to play the game of thrones, rather than standing by.


Note: Joffrey, Myrcella, and Tommen are legally held to be the children of King Robert Baratheon, but they are actually bastards born of incest between Queen Cersei and her twin brother, Ser Jaime Lannister. This information is not publicly known in Seven Kingdoms except as a rumor and only a few know it to be true.

This makes House Baratheon of King's Landing a nigh-cadet branch of House Lannister. Of course, given that bastard children (particularly unacknowledged bastards) cannot inherit, it is unlikely that it will ever be considered an "official" cadet branch of House Lannister.

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