Our fav twincest relationship has a complicated history that can be hard to follow.
Using information from the show, and the book series, we'll breakdown Cersei and Jaime Lannister's entire relationship.
They were born to Tywin and Joanna Lannister.
Tywin Lannister, our favorite baddy daddy, married Joanna Lannister (who was his cousin BTW). They were actually in love, with Tywin actually smiling in her presence. It’s said he lost what little warmth he had when she died.
Side note: The Mad King (King Aerys II Targaryen aka Daenerys' father) lusted after Joanna.
At Tywin and Joanna’s wedding, Aerys made a drunken joke about it being a pity that the First Night tradition was banned. This was a tradition in which the ruling Lord, or King, could sleep with the new bride. However, the Mad King did take “liberties” during the bedding ceremony whatever that means.
This caused a riff between Tywin and the Mad King, but Tywin still served as Hand of the King.
This has led to some people theorizing that Cersei and Jaime are actually the Mad King's children. People also think maybe later on the Mad King raped Joanna resulting in Tyrion (aka Tyrion's a Targaryen theory).
Joanna ends up giving birth to twins, Cersei and Jaime.
Cersei was born first and Jaime next. Cersei tells Ned Stark that she and Jaime were incredibly close because they shared a womb.
Joanna and Tywin ended up having another son, Tyrion. Joanna died because of complications from the birth (Cersei and Jaime were 4 in the show when this happened, 7/8 in the books). Tywin and Cersei hated Tyrion because of this, though Jaime always realized it wasn’t his brother’s fault.
Cersei and Jaime's relationship started when they were kids.
Growing up Cersei and Jaime looked so similar that even their father had a hard time telling them apart.
In the books, it’s stated that Cersei and Jaime started a sexual relationship when they were children. It started out as innocent childhood curiosity. One time a servant caught them and told their mother who moved their bedrooms away from each other, even posting guards. When she died though, the two began their relationship again.
Growing up, Cersei believed she would marry Prince Rhaegar Targaryen
Tywin had always hoped to marry Cersei to the heir to the iron throne, Prince Rhaegar. Cersei knew about this from a young age but she was to keep it a secret. She even kept her attraction of Rhaegar secret from Jaime.
The Princess of Dorne meanwhile, proposed a marriage between Jaime and Elia Martell. Tywin rejected this, and ironically Elia went on to marry Prince Rhaegar.
As a teenager, Cersei visited a woods witch, Maggy, and got her future read
Maggy tasted Cersei's blood, and told her that she wouldn’t marry “the Prince” but rather “the King”. Cersei took this to mean she wouldn’t marry Rhaegar until he became king. She was also told that the king would have 20 children, while she would have 3 children and that they would have golden crowns and golden shrouds. It’s was also said that Cersei would be Queen but would be cast down by a younger and more beautiful one. This leads Cersei to be distrustful of people like Sansa Stark, Margaery Tyrell, and Daenerys Targaryen.
The book prophecy differs slightly. First, it states that the king will have 16 children, not 20. More importantly, Maggy tells Cersei that the “valonqar” will kill her, which is High Valerian for younger brother. Cersei takes this to mean Tyrion, which is also why she distrusts him so much.
In both the show and the book the prophecy has come true for the most part.
-Cersei married a king, Robert Baratheon.
-Robert had 20 (16) bastard children, and Cersei had three children by Jaime.
-Cersei’s children had golden crowns, aka hair, and were all buried wearing golden clothing. The golden crowns could also be literal crowns with Joffrey and Tommen being kings. In Dorn, where Myrcella was, it’s birth order, not gender that dictates succession, so they viewed her, not Tommen, as the rightful ruler.
While the “valonqar” isn’t mentioned in the show, many people think it will be Jaime, not Tyrion, that will kill Cersei. This is a strong theory as Cersei becomes even more like the “Mad Queen” and Jaime may have to kill her like he did the Mad King.
At some point during a visit, The Mad King rejected the proposed marriage of Rhaegar and Cersei
This led to further deterioration between Tywin and King Aerys. Still, Tywin took Cersei to King’s Landing with him and proceeded to refuse every marriage proposal. Tywin was still hoping for a Targaryen match, either with Prince Viserys or hoping Prince Rhaegar's new wife, Elia Martell, would die during childbirth.
Jaime visited Cersei in King's Landing after he received his knighthood
While Cersei was at court, Jaime was away being a squire and ended up receiving his knighthood. On his way home he stopped by the capital to visit Cersei. While there, Cersei informed Jaime that their father intended him to marry Lysa Tully. In order to escape this marriage, Jaime joined the Kingsguard at Cersei’s urging since they had just had sex for the first time and she wanted to keep him close.
But, this plan backfired spectacularly
Tywin thought Jaime joining the Kingsguard, who has to give up all claims of inheritance, was Aerys way of stealing his heir and son. Tywin resigned as the Hand and left to Casterly Rock with Cersei, thus separating the two again.
Eventually, Robert's Rebellion happened
Jaime killed the Mad King as he threatened to “burn them all”, This led to Jaime receiving the nickname “Kingslayer”. The Lannisters helped win the war by capturing King’s Landing, although they showed up late.
Robert Baratheon became King of the Seven Kingdoms
To broker an alliance, Cersei and Robert wed. Cersei had some affection for Robert at first but he whispered “Lyanna” (Ned’s sister, Jon Snow’s mother) into her ear on their wedding night.
Cersei gets pregnant by Robert at least once. In the books, she aborts the baby, but in the show she gives birth but the baby ends up dying.
Cersei ends up having three children by Jaime
After Cersei and Robert's marriage crumbled, her and Jaime continued their relationship resulting in three children, Joffrey, Myrcella, and Tommen. The children were passed off as Robert’s. Cersei doesn’t even like Jaime around the children in case anyone sees a resemblance.
At some point Jon Arryn, and then later Ned Stark, figure out the truth about Cersei and Jaime, which leads to their deaths. Bran Stark even sees them together resulting in him becoming a cripple.
When Robert dies, Cersei takes control as she places her children on the throne
During this time, the War of the Five Kings, happens and Jaime is captured
Jaime gets his hand chopped off and begins to gain some sense of honor due to his relationship with Brienne of Tarth.
When Jaime returns, there is distance between him and Cersei
With Jaime away, Cersei had begun relationships with other men, particularly her cousin Lancel Lannister. There are even more relationships in the book that happen.
When Jaime returns with his hand cut off, there is some distance between the two, especially after Jaime released Tyrion who kills their father. The books go into their declining relationship even more.
Eventually, all of Cersei and Jaime's children die
Cersei becomes Queen of the Seven Kingdoms
Now, we pick up where season 7 begins
Cersei is Queen of the Seven Kingdoms and Jaime is the only person she listens too. While she and Jaime are closer in the show than they are in the books, there is still some noticeable riffs between them, such as her blowing up the Sept of Baelor (and kill thousands in the process) and her working with Euron Greyjoy (and agreeing to marry him.
Cersei is now blatant with her incestuous relationship with Jaime
She lets maids find them in bed together and Euron openly taunts Jaime about their relationship. Jaime doesn't appear to fully agree with being in the open but this is the first time in their life that they have been able to.
Which brings us to the latest news the episode "Eastwatch" dropped on us
Stop reading now if you haven't caught up with that episode.
Cersei is pregnant with Jaime's child!!!
This is huge news and it impacts a lot of things we talked about.
1. This goes against the prophecy, which states she would only have three children. This leaves a few options.
-Either the prophecy was wrong (which could be true),
-Cersei really isn’t pregnant,
-Or this child won’t live (like her first child with Robert).
2. It repairs some of the damage between Cersei and Jaime. Jaime is near tears because for the first time he gets to be a father. The closest he ever came was the few moments before Myrcella died.
3. It adds another layer to the “valonqar” prophecy. Now again, this part wasn’t mentioned in the show, but in the books, it’s a big reason why Cersei hates Tyrion. She sees him as the little brother that will kill her, but Jaime is also younger than her. Some say Jaime will kill her just as he had to kill the Mad King, but Cersei could also die from complications from the baby like her mother did. The baby, Jaime’s baby, could kill her thus fulfilling this part of the prophecy.