A king is the male ruler of a monarchy or realm. Kings usually inherit their position by birth and rule for life or until abdication, though some like Aegon the Conqueror and Robert Baratheon become kings through conquest. The consort of a king is called queen, as is a woman who rules in her own right.
The offspring of kings and queens hold the title of prince or princess.
- "Oh, I'm a monster? Perhaps you should speak to me more softly then. Monsters are dangerous... and just now kings are dying like flies."
- ―Tyrion Lannister to King Joffrey Baratheon.
- The Queen of the Andals and the First Men, the ruler of the Seven Kingdoms.
- The King of the Iron Islands, who also holds the title of King of Salt and Rock, the ruler of the Kingdom of the Iron Islands.
- The Night King, the ruler of the White Walkers.
- The Bronze King, the head of House Royce prior to the Andal Invasion.
- The First King, the former ruler of the First Men.
- The King of Astapor, the former ruler of the city-state of Astapor.
- The King of the Giants, the former ruler of the Giants.
- The King of the Mountain and the Vale, the former ruler of the Kingdom of the Mountain and the Vale.
- The King of the Reach, the former ruler of the Kingdom of the Reach.
- The King of the Rivers and Hills, the former ruler of the Kingdom of the River and the Hills.
- The King of the Rock, the former ruler of the Kingdom of the Rock.
- The King of Qarth, the former ruler of the city-state of Qarth.
- The King-Beyond-the-Wall, the former ruler of the Free Folk.
- The Mountain King, the former ruler of the Kingdom of the Mountain and the Vale.
- The Night's King, the former ruler of the castle of Nightfort.
- The Red King, the head of House Bolton during the Age of Heroes.
- The Storm King, the former ruler of the Kingdom of the Stormlands.
- The Queen of Meereen, the former ruler of Meereen and, by extension, the Bay of Dragons.
- The King in the North, the former ruler of the Kingdom of the North.
There are two main types of queens: a Queen Consort and a Queen Regnant.
A Queen Consort is the wife of a king, and gains the position due to marriage. She may marry him before or after he becomes king, though if she marries him before, she only becomes a queen when he is crowned king. Queen Consorts can wield various unofficial powers, given that they usually come from wealthy and influential families. A Queen Consort's main power comes through her influence on her husband, however, and she does not rule in her own right.
A Queen Consort may, however, become a "Queen Regent" if her husband dies while their children are still below the legal age of inheritance. A Queen Regent does then become acting ruler of a kingdom, though depending on the woman, she may either rule directly or through the aid of various advisers. She can attend meetings of the small council. Once her child comes of age and occupies the throne, the queen is referred to as a Dowager Queen, or informally as the Queen Mother.
A Queen Regnant inherits the crown in her own right, as the child of a previous monarch. Due to the male-preference inheritance system in Westeros (and much of the rest of the world), Ruling Queens are rare - a daughter will usually be skipped over for her younger brother, or even other close male relatives. Unlike a Queen Consort, a Queen Regnant possesses all of the full powers of an active monarch, issuing orders directly.
The monarchy of the Iron Throne, which unified the Seven Kingdoms, has existed for three centuries yet has never had a Queen Regnant. The one woman who came close to such a position was Rhaenyra Targaryen, but the controversy over allowing the first ruling queen led to a civil war in which her younger half-brother Aegon II proclaimed himself the rightful heir. Subsequently, Aegon II was officially held to be the rightful king during this time, though the throne later passed to Rhaenyra's son Aegon III.
The husband of a Queen Regnant would be known as a King Consort.
Due to the near-extinction of House Targaryen, and the false belief of death of all other possible male heirs, Daenerys Targaryen lays claim to the Iron Throne as a Queen Regnant in her own right, because she is the daughter of King Aerys II Targaryen. She is still technically considered to be just a "rival claimant" as she has not actively ruled the Seven Kingdoms or sat the Iron Throne itself. However, as the Crown of the Seven Kingdoms was itself established by Aegon the Conqueror and Daenerys is still believed by many to be his only seemingly direct legitimate Targaryen blood heir, the Iron Throne is thought to belong to Daenerys. This belief is however false, because Daeneys' paternal nephew Jon Snow is the legitimate son of Princess Lyanna Stark and Prince Rhaegar Targaryen, the oldest son of King Aerys II, and by the line of succession in the Westeros, Jon has a better claim to the throne than his aunt Daenerys. While Robert Baratheon was descended of a Targaryen grandmother, he held his title by right of conquest, not by right of blood or law. If Daenerys is successful in her Invasion of Westeros, she could be queen only by right of conquest, not by right of blood because those rights belong to Jon Snow.