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It seems that almost any direct male relation to a King will be given the honor of being called Prince.

Easy examples, Joffrey and Tommen are the sons of King Robert

Harder example, Bran and Rickon are the brothers of the "King" in the North.

Holdover example, Doran is ruler of Dorne and were allowed to maintain the Prince titles after they were not conquered by the dragons. We also see again that a brother, Oberyn, is given the title as well.

The same is true for females (for once!). Myrcella is called a Princess as she is the daughter of King Robert. Shireen like wise is called as her father is claiming to be king.

So we can confirm that brothers of a King will be called "Prince". However, we never see Stannis and Renly given this title (before the death of Robert).

Is there any reasoning for this? Did their positions as Lords of Dragonstone and Storms End and as members of the Small Council somehow "out rank" their status as princes?

  • Whenever Princes held lands, they were referred to as "Prince of [Castle name]". E.g. Prince of Summerhall, Prince of Dragonstone and of course, Theon's brief reign as Prince of Winterfell so a Lord does not outrank a Prince. – Aegon Sep 2 '16 at 15:42
  • And since even Councillors have to refer to Princes as "Your Grace" it is unlikely that councillors outrank the royalties. – Aegon Sep 2 '16 at 15:43
  • @Aegon But remember Balon was calling himself a King by that point, so was Theon being called a prince because he was a Lord of a Castle or because he was the son of a king? – Skooba Sep 2 '16 at 15:44
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    Oh and one more thing. It doesn't appear that a monarch has to explicitly grant the title to his siblings. E.g. Robb never issued a formal decree to proclaim his brothers Princes. They just became Princes with Robb's proclamation of Independence. – Aegon Sep 2 '16 at 15:44
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    Theon was a Prince but a landless one prior to Conquest of Winterfell. So he was just Prince Theon. Then he conquered Winterfell and styled himself Prince of Winterfell. Winterfell is a lordship, not a principality so it is clear the castle didn't make Theon Prince, his descent from Balon did. – Aegon Sep 2 '16 at 15:46
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For Bran and Rickon, it's worth noting that both are Robb's heirs. Renly and Stannis are not. It may simply be the case that they were once called princes, but became "Lords" when Robert had children.

In Stannis' case, it may also be to avoid the awkwardness in calling him "the Prince of Dragonstone," a title that historically implied that he would be the heir. Likewise, in Renly's case his primary duty was as Lord Paramount of the Stormlands. Both are also on the Small Council, whose members are called "lord."

Which brings me to an important point: more so than the Targaryens princes ever were, Stannis and Renly are lords in their own right rather than just a part of the royal family. Under the Targaryens, principality over Dragonstone and Summerhall was never seen as lordships. They were properties belonging to the crown that were traditionally granted as a seat for royal Targs and could be given and retracted at the crown's whim.

But Robert didn't give Renly and Stannis principality over Dragonstone and the Stormlands, he gave it to them as lordships. Renly's sons would inherit Storm's End after him, Stannis's sons would inherit Dragonstone, etc. each creating cadet branches of the main family. To hammer in this distinction, I wouldn't be surprised if it were the Baratheon bros themselves who insisted on going by Lord.

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    When Robert took his throne, Stannis and Renly were his heirs as Robert had no trueborn sons. So by that logic, Stannis and Renly should have been granted the style "Prince" then. Becoming lord should not quasi-revoke their style as Princes as Targaryen Princes retained their style despite becoming Lords. – Aegon Sep 2 '16 at 16:25
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    Nevertheless I agree with your main point that because Stannis and Renly were granted cadet branches (House Baratheon of Dragonstone, House Baratheon of Storm's End) and weren't technically a part of House Baratheon of King's Landing, the senior branch so +1. Although any land can be retracted on Royal whim, including Storm's End and Dragonstone. – Aegon Sep 2 '16 at 16:27
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    Also note that traditionally princes are the other sons of a king, he baratheon boys were not princes to begin with since robert killed the king and took the throne – Himarm Sep 3 '16 at 17:46
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    @Himarm- True, but you could say the same of Bran and Rickon, who are called princes. – TenthJustice Sep 4 '16 at 0:38

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