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Wiki of Westeros

"Mad King Aerys - House Lannister"[3] is the thirteenth short of the first season of Histories & Lore. It is the thirteenth short of the series overall. It was released on March 6, 2012 in Game of Thrones: The Complete First Season. It was narrated by Charles Dance as Tywin Lannister and written by Bryan Cogman.


Having served as Hand to King Aerys for many years, Tywin Lannister saw firsthand how far the Targaryen Monarch had fallen. Here, he recounts Aerys's erratic behavior as witnessed by members of House Lannister.[3]


Tywin Lannister: As Aerys Targaryen's behavior grew more and more erratic, the task of ruling the Seven Kingdoms fell to me, Tywin Lannister.

I had served Aerys for nearly twenty years and as a result, the realm had prospered. The royal coffers were full, the land was at peace.

But Aerys grew increasingly hostile, jealous of the success many credited to me. My power and influence unnerved him.

The captain of my personal guard, Ser Ilyn Payne, was once overheard making offhand comments regarding who was the true ruler of Westeros. When the king was given this information, he had llyn Payne's tongue ripped out with hot pincers.

It was my desire to unite the Houses of Lannister and Targaryen through marriage. My daughter, Cersei, would marry Aerys's eldest son, Prince Rhaegar. Such a union made perfect sense for all parties. However, Aerys's senses had begun to leave him quite sometime earlier.

Instead of uniting the royal family with its most loyal and powerful ally, Aerys chose instead to insult my family, indicating that such a match was beneath Rhaegar. Instead, he chose Elia Martell of Dorne to be Rhaegar's wife.

As if to rub salt in my wounds, Aerys appointed Jaime, my son, to the Kingsguard.

The Kingsguard may be an honor for lesser families than ours, but it is a lifetime appointment that forces him to renounce all family holdings. This creates a difficulty in naming an heir to Casterly Rock. But Aerys knew all that.

I had grown tired of the king's constant provocation. Thus I resigned my post as Aerys's Hand and returned to Casterly Rock with my considerable forces.

When Robert Baratheon rebelled against the throne, Aerys grew fearful that I would join with Robert's forces and rise against him. He thought himself clever and kept Jaime very close as if warning me.

He sunk deeper and deeper into delusion, paranoia, and violence.

I've heard it said he became obsessed with wildfire, a substance which, once lit, cannot be extinguished. Convinced he had enemies all around him, he wouldn't allow blades in his presence, save for those of his Kingsguard.

Alas, that proved to be his undoing.








Behind the scenes[]

  • This is the third of three shorts on Mad King Aerys.
  • Tywin mentions the main insults he received from Aerys, except one - the Mad King's indecent behavior toward Tywin's wife, which is briefly mentioned by Barristan Selmy in the fifth novel, and expanded in The World of Ice & Fire (there were unverified rumors that Joanna was Aerys's mistress). This detail has never been mentioned in the TV show either.


  1. Jacob Klein (March 4, 2012). Game of Thrones DVD & Blu-Ray Available 3/6!. HBO Watch. Retrieved December 15, 2023.
  2. Histories & Lore: Season 1, Short 13: "Mad King Aerys - House Lannister" (2012).
  3. 3.0 3.1 3.2 3.3 3.4 3.5 3.6 3.7 Game of Thrones: The Complete First Season (2012).
  4. Dan Selcke (September 20, 2017). Bryan Cogman is developing a fifth Game of Thrones prequel series for HBO. Winter is Coming. Retrieved December 14, 2023.