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For other characters who share the same name, see: Daemon
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"Aegon the Unworthy legitimized all his bastards on his deathbed. Inevitably the greatest of these, Daemon Blackfyre, declared himself the rightful heir, and ignited yet another war for the crown."
―Varys[src]

Daemon I Blackfyre, born Daemon Waters, was a bastard son of King Aegon IV Targaryen and Princess Daena Targaryen. Legitimized by his father upon the latter's death, Daemon took the name "Blackfyre" for himself, after the ancestral Valyrian steel sword of House Targaryen, which his father also bequeathed to him. Despite his bastard status, Daemon believed himself the rightful heir to the Iron Throne, as his father's firstborn (and favorite) child and ignited a bloody civil war against his half-brother Daeron II Targaryen. Despite support from nearly half the realm, Daemon and his supporters were routed in the war's final, climatic battle, and Daemon himself perished, along with his two eldest sons.

Biography

Background

Daemon Blackfyre was the legitimized bastard son of King Aegon IV Targaryen and his cousin, Daena Targaryen.[2][1]

Despite being a bastard and eleven years younger than the king's legitimate son, Daeron II Targaryen,[1] Daemon presented a threat to his half-brother's succession already during Aegon's reign as Aegon had accused his wife, Queen Naerys Targaryen, of adultery with his brother, Aemon. Though Aemon had successfully defended the queen's honor in a trial by combat, the affair had seeded doubt in Daeron's claim to the throne.[2]

Since Daemon had royal blood from both his father and mother, Aegon had him raised in the Red Keep. As he matured, Daemon grew tall and became a proficient fighter, being knighted by his father at the age of twelve and bestowed with the ancient Valyrian steel sword of Aegon the Conqueror, Blackfyre, shocking the lords of Westeros. Daemon was even allowed to renounce his bastard's name of Waters and take on the name of the sword, becoming known as Daemon Blackfyre.[2]

Aegon legitimized all of his bastard sons on his deathbed, including Daemon Blackfyre.[2] Daemon and Aegon's other highborn bastards became known as the Great Bastards.[3] Though Daeron, previously the king's only legitimate son, at first ruled without problems, governing the realm wisely and justly and working to correct the wrongdoings of Aegon's reign, many of his vassals disapproved of the reforms, most importantly the peace that Daeron sealed with Dorne,[2] which saw Daeron wed his sister Daenerys to Prince Maron Martell.[4][1] Daeron had already himself wed Myriah Martell, his queen, before becoming king.[1]

Daemon was killed at the Battle of the Redgrass Field by a volley of arrows fired by his half-brother Brynden Rivers and his archers.

Thanks to Aegon's accusations against his wife and brother many years prior, many also believed that Daeron was a bastard. Those who were unsatisfied with Daeron's rule rallied around Daemon, who at first objected to taking any action, only indulging them out of vanity and courtesy.[2] Though Daemon had been given a wife,[2] Serena Blackfyre, born a peasant,[1] and lands by Daeron, the unsatisfied lords eventually wore him down and Daemon rebelled, launching the Blackfyre Rebellion, wherein Daemon attempted to claim the Iron Throne as his birthright.[2] Daemon's rebellion ended with his death, twenty-six years old, from wounds sustained at the Battle of the Redgrass Field.[1] Daemon had duelled the Kingsguard Ser Gwayne Corbray for an hour at Redgrass Field[5] before he died after being shot with arrows by his half-brother Brynden Rivers and Brynden's men.[6] The sword Blackfyre was lost after Daemon's rebellion.[7]

With his wife, Serena Blackfyre, Daemon fathered four known sons:[1] Aegon, Aemon, Daemon II,[1] and Haegon.[2] Aegon and Aemon, who were twins, died with their father at the Battle of the Redgrass Field, but Daemon II and Haegon, as well as Haegon's descendants, would resurface in later years and rebellions, attempting to claim the throne.[2]

Season 1

Daemon, along with his trueborn siblings, his wife Serena, and his offspring, is mentioned in the House Targaryen entry of the book The Lineages and Histories of the Great Houses of the Seven Kingdoms. The tome mentions that he rose in rebellion against his half-brother but perished from wounds sustained at the Battle of the Redgrass Field.[1]

Family tree

Daemon Blackfyre's ancestors

 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
Famtree-AegonIII.png
Aegon III
Targaryen

Deceased
 
House-Targaryen-heraldry.jpg
Unknown
Queen
Deceased
 
 
 
 
Famtree-ViserysII.png
Viserys II
Targaryen

Deceased
 
House-Targaryen-heraldry.jpg
Visneya
Targaryen

Deceased
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
DaeronITargaryenFamilyTree.png
Daeron I
Targaryen

"Daeron the
Young Dragon"
Deceased

 
BaelorTheBlessedTargaryenFamilyTree.png
Baelor I
Targaryen

"Baelor the
Blessed"
Deceased
 
ElaenaTargaryenFamilyTree.png
Elaena
Targaryen

Deceased


 
RhaenaTargaryenFamilyTree.png
Rhaena
Targaryen

Deceased


 
DaenaTargaryenFamilyTree.png
Daena
Targaryen

"Daena the
Defiant"
Deceased
 
House-Targaryen-heraldry.jpg
Aegon IV
Targaryen

Deceased


 
House-Targaryen-heraldry.jpg
Naerys
Targaryen

Deceased


 
Dragonknightfamilytree.jpg
Aemon
Targaryen
Kingsguard-Main-Shield.PNG
"the
Dragonknight"
Deceased

 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
Famtree-DaemonBlackfyre.png
Daemon I
Blackfyre
House-Blackfyre-Main-Shield.PNG
Deceased




 
House-Targaryen-heraldry.jpg
3 other Great
Bastards
of Aegon
IV by different
women:
Bloodraven, Bittersteel,
and Shiera
Deceased
 
House-Targaryen-heraldry.jpg
Daeron II
Targaryen

Deceased





 
House-Targaryen-heraldry.jpg
Daenerys
Targaryen

Deceased





Daemon Blackfyre's descendants


 
 
 
 
Famtree-DaemonBlackfyre.png
Daemon I
Blackfyre
House-Blackfyre-Main-Shield.PNG
Deceased
 
House-Blackfyre-Square.PNG
Serena
Blackfyre

Deceased
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
House-Blackfyre-Square.PNG
Aegon
Blackfyre

Deceased
 
House-Blackfyre-Square.PNG
Aemon
Blackfyre

Deceased
 
House-Blackfyre-Square.PNG
Daemon II
Blackfyre

Deceased
 
House-Blackfyre-Square.PNG
Haegon
Blackfyre

Deceased
 
House-Blackfyre-Square.PNG
Unknown
Blackfyre Wife
Deceased
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
House-Blackfyre-Square.PNG
Daemon III
Blackfyre
Daemon-III-Shield.png
Deceased
 
House-Blackfyre-Square.PNG
Unknown
Blackfyre Wife
Deceased
 
House-Blackfyre-Square.PNG
Unknown
Blackfyre Son
Deceased
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
House-Blackfyre-Square.PNG
Descendants
of House
Blackfyre
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
Famtree-MaelysBlackfyre.png
Maelys
Blackfyre

Deceased
 

Gallery

In the books

In the A Song of Ice and Fire novels, Daemon is mentioned several times. More of his backstory is revealed in the Tales of Dunk and Egg.

Daemon was born Daemon Waters, only taking the name Blackfyre after he had been legitimized by his father. He was named after his great-grandfather Prince Daemon Targaryen, since the latter was the wonder and terror of his day.

After the Dance of the Dragons, the civil war between Rhaenyra and Aegon II Targaryen, House Targaryen's royal succession laws were revised to put female heirs behind all possible male ones - specifically that if all of one king's sons die, the throne will pass to his younger brother before it passes to his own daughters. Under the normal succession laws of the Andals, a daughter inherits before an uncle. Both Rhaenyra and Aegon II died in the Dance, but were succeeded by Rhaenyra's son Aegon III. His two sons Daeron and Baelor became king after him but died without issue. Aegon III did have three daughters, but at this point the new succession laws came into play, so Baelor was succeeded by Aegon III's younger brother Viserys II, who in turn was succeeded by his own son Aegon IV.

Had the new succession laws not gone into effect, Aegon III's daughters would have inherited ahead of Aegon IV, instead of being skipped over for their uncle Viserys II. As it happened, the oldest of these three daughters, Daena, had an affair with Aegon IV, her own first cousin, which produced their bastard son Daemon Blackfyre.

The result is that Daemon and the rest of House Blackfyre are actually descended from older brother Aegon III, while all subsequent members of the main line of House Targaryen (i.e. Daenerys) are descended from younger brother Viserys II.

Daemon was a bastard, and though legitimized, he was simply younger than Daeron II. Therefore, part of his claim to the throne rested on the flimsy accusation that Daeron II was himself a bastard, fathered by Aegon IV's younger brother Aemon the Dragonknight. However, others pointed out that Daemon's mother Daena would have been ahead of Daeron II's grandfather Viserys II, had the succession laws not been arbitrarily changed.

Daemon was a great warrior, and one of the most skilled swordsmen of his day. At 17 years old, he participated in the tourney for the wedding of Princess Daenerys Targaryen to Prince Maron Martell of Dorne - Prince Baelor, Daeron the Good's eldest son, unhorsed him in the final tilt. One of the reasons that people started to favor him over Daeron was the fact that Daemon looked every inch a king, was strong and charismatic and there were rampant rumors that Daeron was actually a bastard sired by Prince Aemon the Dragonknight. People already were skeptical of Daeron, who was not a martial man and more scholarly. In fairness, it was a rather long time before Daemon rebelled, and it was rumored that his half-brother Aegor Rivers had been the man to convince him to do so, along with the master-at-arms Ser Quentyn Ball. It slowly became clear that Daemon was already resentful of his status, specifically his bastardy and what it represented.

Ultimately, Daemon Blackfyre proclaimed himself king, plunging the Seven Kingdoms into the Blackfyre Rebellion. It officially started when Daeron heard of Daemon's intent to go to war with him, and sent his Kingsguard after him. Daemon escaped thanks to the intervention of Ser Quentyn Ball, and those who had supported Daemon used the attempted arrest as cause to start the war, citing that King Daeron had been unprovoked in his actions. During the war, Daemon was joined by some of the greatest knights in the realm, but some houses were divided in their support of either the black dragon or red.

At the climactic Battle of the Redgrass Field, Daemon fought like the Warrior himself with Blackfyre in hand, and fought an epic duel with Ser Gwayne Corbray of the Kingsguard for an hour, before finally wounding him. Daemon arguably could have won the battle if he'd moved on from Gwayne, but instead he protected his opponent and paid for it with his life - Brynden Rivers and his company of longbowman, the Raven's Teeth, took the Weeping Ridge, and rained arrows down onto Daemon Blackfyre from 300 yards away, killing Daemon and his twin sons. Brynden was cursed as a "kinslayer" for this, despite there being no way of knowing whose arrow had struck the fatal blow itself (though either way, it was a company of archers he commanded). Years later, however, Brynden personally beheaded Daemon's younger son Aenys Blackfyre (his own half-nephew) while under a flag of truce, making himself both certainly a kinslayer and an oathbreaker - for which he was exiled to the Night's Watch.

Daemon's death on the Redgrass Field resulted in the end of what was probably the greatest of the Blackfyre Rebellions, and King Daeron proved uncharacteristically ruthless in his punishment of those who supported the Black Dragon, taking several hostages, lands and castles from the rebel lords. Despite this, several lords, including Ser Eustace Osgrey, remembered Daemon fondly, even though supporting him cost the knight very dearly. Years after his death, they unapologetically continued to proclaim him to be the rightful king. Up until the days of Robert Baratheon, Daemon was considered the greatest threat the Targaryen family had ever faced.

See also

References

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