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Potsk

Prince of Dragonstone

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Is it the Targaryen equivalent for crown prince, or is it just a title the crown prince usually has? It took Aenys 4 years as king to name his heir Prince of Dragonstone. If a new Targaryen monarch retook Dragonstone and took a title to go with it, would it be Prince/Princess, or would it be Lord/Lady?

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Posted (edited)

The Crown Prince/Heir apparent is made Prince of Dragonstone when they reach a suitable age (once they've made it past the dangerous toddler ages, I guess) and it sort of serves as a preparation for Kingship, so they can learn how to govern a castle before they govern the realm.

Edited by Adam Yozza

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It's a title perhaps inspired by the prince of wales.  It became tradition over time.  It's a title and a holding for the heir to the throne.  It is quite sensible because it keeps the heir from having too much power until the sitting monarch dies.  Dragonstone will not be able to call upon a significant force to overthrow the monarch.  

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The Prince of Dragonstone was originally just a nickname of Prince Maegor. He was the Prince of Dragonstone because he spent most of his time there, but he did not rule the place which was basically the second residence of King Aegon.

In those times being the Heir Apparent had nothing to do with that nickname. Prince Aenys was the unquestioned Heir Apparent, Prince Maegor was just the spare.

'Prince of Dragonstone' became a relevant title when King Aenys, after he had exiled Maegor, decided to grant this title to his Heir Apparent, Prince Aegon. At that time Dragonstone was the major royal residence considering that the Red Keep was not yet completed, so this was more a ceremonial title then a title that came with a lordship.

During Maegor's reign there was neither a Prince nor a Princess of Dragonstone, although it seems that Dragonstone effectively became the residence and seat of Maegor's mother, the Dowager Queen Visenya.

Jaehaerys I granted Dragonstone as residence and seat to his elder sister, Queen Rhaena. She ruled it in her own right but still under jurisdiction of Jaehaerys I. This was the first time that Dragonstone was treated as an independent lordship/domain under the rule of the Iron Throne. Prior to that it was effectively one of two royal residences of the Targaryen king.

After Rhaena moved to the Widow's Tower at Harrenhal Jaehaerys I's Heir Apparent Aemon was created Prince of Dragonstone in 62 AC. This is the first time that the creation of a Prince of Dragonstone and the formal investiture of the Heir Apparent were the same act. And that's how it was until Aerys II was overthrown. After Aemon died, Baelon followed him as Prince of Dragonstone and Heir Apparent, then Viserys, and then Rhaenyra.

Although it is interesting whether there will be other exceptions like the one with Rhaena. The childless Aegon III could grant Dragonstone as seat and lordship to his brother Viserys, so that he and his sons have seats they can leave to their descendants if he and Daenaera produce heirs to sit the Iron Throne. If that were the case then Daeron I and Baelor won't succeed to the Iron Throne as Princes of Dragonstone. Instead their uncle and Hand will bear that title until Viserys II's branch takes over the Iron Throne.

Aemon was also the first Prince of Dragonstone who actually resided at and ruled Dragonstone (at least until he became Master of Laws). Baelon later did the same until he became Hand, and Viserys may have, too, for a short time. Rhaenyra definitely did, and we also know that the future Daeron II and Rhaegar also lived on and ruled Dragonstone rather than residing in the Red Keep.

You don't become Prince of Dragonstone by default by being the eldest child, just as you are not the Heir Apparent just because you happen to be the eldest child. 

One assumes, for instance, that there was neither an acknowledged Heir Apparent nor a Prince of Dragonstone when King Maekar died in 233 AC. Else the succession wouldn't have been in doubt.

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22 hours ago, Potsk said:

Is it the Targaryen equivalent for crown prince, or is it just a title the crown prince usually has?

The latter. Jaehaerys was the first to use the title in formal sense, in an obvious attempt to lend additional legitimacy for his son's claim as a successor to the Iron Throne. However it was not obligatory - not every King's heir was granted the title; there is no mention of law or a decree or even an established precedent binding the title and succession right together.

It's like Blackfyre - the sword has no legal power and could be granted to anyone, but it is associated with the idea of kingship in the mass consciousness.

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