The fight for the Iron Throne has reignited as House of the Dragon takes a look at the tumultuous Targaryen reign in the times before Game of Thrones.


Once again, multiple parties believe it's their God-given right to rule the Seven Kingdoms, sparking violence and drama along the way.

One who thinks he's in the running for the Throne is Prince Daemon Targaryen (played by Matt Smith).

Read on for your guide to the hot-headed would-be king to find out his lineage, whether he has any right to the Throne at all, and what we can expect from him in House of the Dragon.

Who is Prince Daemon Targaryen in House of the Dragon?

Matt Smith as Prince Daemon Targaryen in House of the Dragon
Matt Smith as Prince Daemon Targaryen in House of the Dragon HBO/Sky Atlantic

Spouse: Lady Rhea Royce

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Doctor Who and The Crown star Matt Smith takes on the role of Prince Daemon Targaryen, arguably one of the more complex characters we can expect to see in House of the Dragon.

According to HBO: "The younger brother to King Viserys, and peerless warrior and dragonrider, Daemon possesses the true blood of the dragon. But it is said that whenever a Targaryen is born, the gods toss a coin in the air…"

He's the brother of King Viserys I Targaryen (Paddy Considine), second son of Prince Baelon Targaryen, and the grandson of the Old King Jaehaerys I Targaryen.

A talented warrior, Daemon was knighted by his grandfather when he was just 16, when he was given one of two ancestral swords of House Targaryen, Dark Sister.

Daemon was initially supportive of Viserys and his accession to the Throne, but he soon sours to the idea when his own ambitions are ruined.

The Rogue Prince was married to Lady Rhea Royce of Runestone in the Vale of Arryn, but the marriage is an unhappy one and he refers to her as his "Bronze B***h".

The Targaryen prince is a promiscuous lover with an insatiable appetite but has a paramour in the form of prostitute and dancer Mysaria (Sonoya Mizuno).

Wil Johnson, Matt Smith and Theo Nate in House of the Dragon
Wil Johnson, Matt Smith and Theo Nate in House of the Dragon Ollie Upton/ HBO

Serving initially as Master of Coin and Master of Laws, Daemon found more happiness as Commander of the City Watch of King's Landing – but being in charge of an army was a potentially dangerous situation for a man who could flip at any moment.

Daemon always considered himself the heir to the Iron Throne following Viserys's reign as his little brother – especially given the fact that the King failed to father a son with his wife Queen Aemma (Sian Brooke).

But the Hand of the King, Ser Otto Hightower (Rhys Ifans), was sure to make his position known, telling Viserys that his daughter, Princess Rhaenrya Targaryen (Milly Alcock, Emma D'Arcy), should be the next leader of the Seven Kingdoms instead.

After the death of Queen Aemma in childbirth, Dameon's mocking of the infant led to him being exiled and Princess Rhaenyra being named the heir to the Iron Throne.

After this, Daemon pursues war alongside Lord Corlys Velaryon in the Stepstones against the Crabfeeder of the Triarchy.

In a vicious battle in the third episode, Daemon is victorious against the Crabfeeder. Will this put him back in his brother's good books?

Why did George R R Martin choose Prince Daemon as his favourite Targaryen?

Matt Smith as Prince Daemon Targaryen in House of the Dragon. Ollie Upton/HBO

George R R Martin chose Prince Daemon Targaryen as his favourite in the dynasty in an interview hosted on the YouTube account Aegon Targaryen.

"I’m notorious for my love of grey characters and one of the greyest characters in the entire history of Westeros is Daemon Targaryen, the Rogue Prince," he said.

Martin called him a "notorious bad boy" and a "rogue in every sense of the word" who is a "very colourful" character.

Will Daemon prove as popular with fans of the show?

What is Dark Sister?

Matt Smith as Daemon draws a sword in House of the Dragon
Matt Smith as Daemon draws a sword in House of the Dragon HBO

In House of the Dragon, Daemon Targaryen wields the Valyrian steel sword, Dark Sister. It is one of two ancestral swords tied to House Targaryen.

Slender in design, Dark Sister is thought to have been made for a female warrior initially, and has had a fair few owners before it reached Daemon.

Queen Visenya Targaryen is the first known Targaryen owner of Dark Sister, having used the sword in training alongside her brother King Aegon I Targaryen. She would go on to establish the Kingsguard.

She gave the sword to her 13-year-old son, Maegor Targaryen, but he chose to fight with the other Valyian sword, Blackfyre. The sword was stolen by Queen Alyssa Velaryon and gifted to Jaehaerys, the Old King, when he pronounced his claim to the Throne.

Daemon's father, Baelon the Brave, wielded the sword while avenging his brother's death before it was gifted to Daemon by King Jaehaerys.

Though Daemon is a talented warrior, will he use Dark Sister to do good?

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House of the Dragon premieres on Sky Atlantic and NOW on Monday 22nd August 2022. Check out more of our Fantasy coverage or visit our TV Guide to see what's on tonight.


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