Princess Myrcella Baratheon was commonly thought to be the only daughter of King Robert Baratheon and Queen Cersei Lannister. However, like her brothers, her real father is Jaime Lannister, making her a bastard born out of incest.
After her upbringing in King’s Landing, Myrcella was shipped to Dorne in an attempt to forge a marriage-alliance with House Martell by having her wed to Trystane Martell. However, Myrcella was later killed by Ellaria Sand, who took vengeance for the Lannister family’s involvement in Oberyn Martell’s death.
Princess Myrcella was commonly thought to be the only daughter of King Robert Baratheon and Queen Cersei Lannister. Cersei and Robert married to seal a political alliance between House Baratheon and House Lannister after Robert took the throne by force from the Mad King Aerys II Targaryen. Myrcella had an older brother, Joffrey, and a younger, Tommen, with whom she was close. The real father of all three children is Jaime Lannister, her uncle (Cersei’s twin brother) and a member of the Kings guard, making them bastards born of incest. However, like her siblings and the rest of Westeros, Myrcella had no idea of the truth of her parentage at the time. She had a sweet and quiet disposition and was fond of her uncle Tyrion Lannister.
Myrcella accompanies her family north to Winterfell after the death of Jon Arryn. During their stay, Bran Stark is severely injured. Myrcella is eating breakfast with Cersei, Jaime and Tommen when her uncle Tyrion joins them. Myrcella asks whether Bran will die and Tyrion replies that he is expected to live, delighting Myrcella and horrifying Cersei. Tyrion excites Myrcella and Tommen by announcing that he wishes to see the Wall and the “wintry abode of the White Walkers.” He then amuses them by claiming that he wants to urinate off the edge of the wall. Cersei is irritated by his rudeness and leaves, taking the children with her.
Myrcella attends the tournament to celebrate Eddard Stark becoming Hand of the King. She witnesses the horrific death of Ser Hugh of the Vale during his joust against Ser Gregor Clegane. Myrcella returns for the second day of the tournament and applauds when Ser Loras Tyrell unseats Gregor. Gregor attacks Loras and Sandor Clegane intervenes. King Robert calls an end to the fighting. Myrcella joins the applause when Loras declares Sandor a champion.
Myrcella attends Joffrey’s nameday Tourney, watching in terror as he has Meryn Trant torture Dontos Hollard. She is pleased when her uncle Tyrion Lannister arrives during the festivities and tells her that she is more beautiful than ever. When Joffrey callously says that they had heard he was dead, Myrcella tells Tyrion that she is glad that rumours of his death were not true, which Tyrion happily agrees with.
Myrcella attends a tense dinner with her younger brother Tommen, her mother Cersei, and Sansa Stark. Myrcella naively makes smalltalk with Sansa, asking when she will marry Joffrey, and Cersei explains it will be after the war ends. Myrcella says that she is excited for the new gowns she will wear to the wedding. She good-naturedly points out that Sansa will be wearing an ivory gown as the bride. Sansa isn’t sure how to react but Cersei presses her to respond. Sansa parrots the usual lines that she looks forward to being married to Joffrey.
In order to strengthen House Lannister’s political position during the War of the Five Kings, Hand of the King Tyrion Lannister makes plans to forge a marriage-alliance with House Martell of Dorne by having Princess Myrcella wed to Trystane Martell, the youngest child of the current ruler of Dorne. In return House Martell would hopefully supply soldiers to the Lannisters’ side, or at least ensure they wouldn’t openly side with their enemies.
The actual marriage ceremony will wait until Myrcella is old enough, but part of the arrangement involves sending her to Dorne to live in the Martell household. Queen Cersei is furious with Tyrion when she hears (from Grand Maester Pycelle) what he is planning, declaring that she won’t let her only daughter be shipped off to Dorne as she was shipped off to Robert Baratheon. Tyrion counters that as a princess, many would say that Myrcella was born to one day forge a marriage alliance, and she will be safer in Dorne than in the capital city during a major civil war. Against Cersei’s continued protests, Tyrion insists that the plan has already been finalised, leaving Cersei fuming and in tears for her daughter.
Myrcella later plays with her handmaidens in a castle garden before the eyes of Septa Eglantine, while her inebriated mother bitterly criticises Tyrion for being ready to “seal my daughter in a crate so you can ship her away”. Tyrion insists that she will be safer in Dorne, and Cersei mocks his concern for her. Tyrion firmly says that he is indeed concerned for Myrcella’s safety: she is a sweet, innocent girl, and “I don’t blame her at all for you”.
Myrcella tearfully departs King’s Landing on a ship bound for Sun spear accompanied by Septa Eglantine and Ser Arys Oakheart of the Kings guard. She is seen off at the docks by a formal royal procession including King Joffrey, Prince Tommen, Queen Cersei, Acting Hand of the King Tyrion Lannister, and Sansa Stark with prayers for her and her safe journey delivered by the High Septon. Tommen’s tears for his sister’s departure are accosted by Joffrey. Almost immediately after her departure, her family are caught up in a riot, narrowly escaping.
After Jaime returns to King’s Landing, Cersei lists off to him all she has suffered since he left for the war over two years ago, one of which is that their daughter Myrcella has been shipped off to Dorne to secure a political marriage-alliance.
During the royal wedding between King Joffrey and Margaery Tyrell, Prince Oberyn Martell encounters Lord Tywin, the man he holds responsible for letting Ser Gregor Clegane rape and kill his sister Elia during the Sack of King’s Landing, and also killing her two children. Oberyn introduces his paramour, Ellaria Sand, to Myrcella’s mother Cersei. The four of them exchange smiling pleasantries which barely hide their underlying and mutual loathing for each other. At the end of their encounter, Oberyn casually points out that Myrcella is still in Dorne; while Oberyn hints that a ward can easily become nothing more than a hostage, he also taunts Cersei and Tywin by stating that murdering little girls is frowned upon in Dorne. Tommen is crowned king after Joffrey is poisoned at his own wedding, making Myrcella the heir to the Iron Throne, as Stannis is in open rebellion and thus held as an unlawful claimant.
While conversing with Oberyn, Cersei laments that she has not seen Myrcella in over a year. Oberyn informs her that the last time he saw Myrcella she was swimming with two of his daughters in the Water Gardens, laughing in the sun. Cersei states that she wants to believe this story, and that Myrcella is happy. Oberyn gives her his word, stating again that they do not hurt little girls in Dorne. Cersei replies that they hurt little girls everywhere in the world. Cersei asks Oberyn to bring Myrcella a gift from her, as she missed her nameday and does not know when she will see her again. Oberyn agrees and Cersei points to a ship that the best shipwrights in King’s Landing have been building for months, declaring that Myrcella loves the open water. Oberyn promises to have it sailed down to Sunspear for Myrcella. Cersei asks him to please tell Myrcella that her mother misses her very much. Later, Oberyn meets with Tyrion in his prison cell, and recounts his meeting with Cersei. Oberyn says he half-suspects that Cersei was actually lying, and was exaggerating how much she misses Myrcella in order to guilt him into siding with her against Tyrion during the trial – though her performance was so convincing that part of him also wonders if it was true. Tyrion explains that the trouble with Cersei is that she mixes lies with truth to suit her own ends: part of her is worried about Myrcella, but she isn’t above cynically using this grief to gain sympathy from others.
Myrcella walks through the Water Gardens with her betrothed Trystane Martell, whom she has fallen in love with, while being watched by Ellaria Sand and Prince Doran Martell. Ellaria, still furious about Oberyn’s death, offers to torture and mutilate Myrcella, and send pieces of her back to take revenge on Cersei, whom she deems responsible for orchestrating Tyrion’s show trial which led to the trial by combat that claimed Oberyn’s life, but Doran staunchly refuses to harm the girl.
As Myrcella and Trystane are wandering the Water Gardens, Myrcella questions Trystane as to if he truly loves her or is only indifferent towards their arranged pairing. Trystane affirms that he has true affections for her. They are once again observed by Prince Doran, who muses to his guard Areo Hotah that a Lannister and Martell pairing is indeed very dangerous. Myrcella is surprised to see her “uncle” Jaime Lannister after he and Bronn finally locate her as she is kissing Trystane in the gardens. She is upset after Bronn is forced to knock her betrothed unconscious, and struggles against Jaime’s advances to leave with him.
The Sand Snakes, on Ellaria’s orders, make a sudden ambush in order to kidnap Myrcella. She is nearly taken hostage by Nymeria Sand, but the conflict is mediated after Areo Hotah arrives with a dozen Dornish guards, imprisoning Jaime, Bronn, the Sand Snakes and Ellaria.
Myrcella visits Jaime in custody. Jaime tells her that the situation has grown dangerous and he needs to take her home, back to King’s Landing, apologising, clearly understanding Myrcella’s confusion at his hostility towards Dorne. Myrcella, failing to understand after almost being kidnapped by the same girls she believed were her friends, states that Dorne is her home now, and she will stay and marry Trystane before leaving Jaime alone.
Myrcella is then seen seated next to Trystane at the meeting between the Martells and Jaime. When her ‘uncle’ remarks that she must be cold in her dress, implying he doesn’t approve of the more revealing style of Dornish clothing, Myrcella coolly replies that she is not and that the warmer climate agrees with her, thereby upholding and reasserting her commitment to Dorne and her new life and also demonstrating how much she has flourished there. When Jaime states that her brother Tommen wishes her to return to King’s Landing, she is both nonplussed and bothered, but she is palliated when Doran calls for her engagement to his son to continue and that the prince joins her back to the capital, a request Jaime agrees to.
When Ellaria later visits Jaime she reveals that she knows Myrcella is his daughter, born of incest with Cersei. Ellaria admits that she is aware of Myrcella’s innocence and that she is not affiliated with Oberyn’s murder in an apologetic manner, though Jaime is not entirely convinced.
At the harbor, Myrcella says her farewells to Prince Doran and Ellaria before departing for King’s Landing. Ellaria, taking her vengeance, kisses her after coating a fatal poison on her lips, thus sealing the young girl’s fate. On board the boat, Myrcella reveals to Jaime that she has always known of his and Cersei’s incestuous relationship and that he is her true father. The two of them share a tender moment before the effects of the poison become apparent. Jaime holds Myrcella as she falls, blood running from her nose.
Myrcella’s body is returned to King’s Landing with Jaime. Cersei waits at the port and immediately realises from Jaime’s sullen expression that they were too late to save Myrcella from the Martells. Jaime and Cersei are aware that Doran Martell had nothing to do with the murder, correctly guessing Ellaria Sand and the Sand Snakes were the ones behind it. Though Jaime sends a letter to Doran demanding the heads of Ellaria, Obara, Nymeria and Tyene for murdering Myrcella, the Sands kill Doran and Trystane and take over Dorne.
Myrcella is laid to rest in the Great Sept of Baelor, with Jaime and Tommen standing vigil. To their fury, however, the High Sparrow does not let Cersei attend. Myrcella’s body is garbed in a golden gown, confirming the prophecy that Cersei’s children would all have gold burial shrouds.
Myrcella’s body is destroyed when her mother has the Great Sept destroyed with wildfire. It is later revealed that Ellaria Sand and the Sand Snakes have pledged allegiance to Daenerys Targaryen, after hearing of her alliance with Yara and Theon Greyjoy.
During a meeting at Daenerys Targaryen’s council, Tyrion and Ellaria argue over her death. Tyrion states that Myrcella was an innocent girl, to which Ellaria responds she was killed due to her Lannister blood and that her greatest regret was that Oberyn died fighting for Tyrion’s life. Euron Greyjoy later attacks Daenerys’s fleet, personally kills Obara and Nymeria, and takes Ellaria and Tyene captive, intent on delivering them to Cersei to answer for Myrcella’s murder. Tyene and Ellaria are brought before Cersei, who has them placed inside a dungeon where she proceeds to kiss Tyene with lips coated with the Long Farewell, the exact same poison that the Sands used to kill her daughter, and leaves her to die with Ellaria watching, thus avenging Myrcella.
Despite Myrcella’s death having been avenged, Cersei still holds Tyrion partially responsible, telling him that had he not killed their father Tywin, Ellaria would not have dared to touch her. Despite the circumstances Tyrion offers his condolences, claiming that he loved both Myrcella and Tommen and is deeply sorry for their deaths, a truth which Cersei knows she can’t deny.
Described as “sweet and innocent” by Tyrion Lannister, Myrcella is effectively the complete opposite of Cersei and Joffrey. While Joffrey is a villainous psychopath, Myrcella, much like her other brother, Tommen, is a kind and caring individual. While at Winterfell, despite not knowing Bran Stark all that well, she expresses concern for his well-being and is visibly happy to hear that he will live.
After the outbreak of the War of the Five Kings, Myrcella continues to be kind to Sansa Stark, despite her older brother Robb being the Lannisters’ primary enemy at the time. Having grown a little older, Myrcella appears to be looking forward to Sansa and Joffrey’s wedding, partly due to the dress she will be wearing, though she makes a point to mention the nicer dress Sansa will wear as the bride. Her relationship with Joffrey is not elaborated on much, but Myrcella is shown to love her family to the point that she cries while leaving for Dorne, despite the intention to keep her safe from Stannis Baratheon.
During her years in Dorne, Myrcella matures greatly and learns to become somewhat independent of her family, after falling in love with Trystane Martell and looking up to Doran Martell as a surrogate father. When Jaime Lannister arrives in Dorne to rescue her from Ellaria Sand, Myrcella appears more surprised than happy to see her “uncle”, and refuses more than once to return to King’s Landing with him. It is only when Trystane is ordered to accompany her that she agrees, given her love for her betrothed. Her relationship with Robert Baratheon, her legal father, seems to have been somewhat distant, as with Joffrey and Tommen, since when Myrcella tells Jaime that she knows he is her real father, despite the taboo against incest, she expresses happiness, implying that she held a lot more respect for Jaime than she did for Robert.
However, one of her greatest flaws is her naiveté. After Oberyn Martell is killed, more than one threat is made towards Myrcella, the first being the theft of her necklace, which she simply assumes was stolen from her room instead of suspecting Ellaria. Even after the Sand Snakes attempt to kidnap her from the Water Gardens and Ellaria shows obvious anger when Doran arranges for her to return to King’s Landing, Myrcella’s innocence gets the better of her one last time and she foolishly allows Ellaria to kiss her on the lips and poison her, very easily falling for Ellaria’s apology despite her so openly having threatened her life numerous times.