Tywin Lannister is the head of House Lannister, Lord of Casterly Rock, Warden of the West, Lord Paramount of the Westerlands, Hand of the King on two occasions, and Protector of the Realm. He is the father of Cersei, Jaime and Tyrion Lannister.
Intelligent, calculating, ruthless and intimidating, Tywin is the richest man in Westeros and effectively the most powerful when he serves as Hand of the King to his grandsons Joffrey and Tommen. His driving force is to secure his legacy and that of the Lannister name, and will do whatever he considers necessary to protect the family. Tywin is often at odds with his three children, whom he considers a disappointment. His mistreatment of Tyrion eventually results in his son Tyrion killing him.
Tywin is the lord of House Lannister, the Lord Paramount of the Westerlands, and the richest man in the Seven Kingdoms. The Westerlands are one of the constituent regions of the Seven Kingdoms and House Lannister is one of the Great Houses of the realm. House Lannister rule the region from their seat of Casterly Rock and Tywin also holds the title Lord of Casterly Rock. He is also the Warden of the West. He is a widower with three children, Jaime, Cersei and Tyrion. Casterly Rock, the Lannister's ancestral seat of power, is located over a group of highly productive goldmines, which have provided the Lannisters with immense wealth over the years and led to the speculation that Tywin "shits gold."
Tywin is the son of Tytos Lannister. His father presided over a period of decline for the house, frittering away much of their fortune on poor investments and allowing himself to be mocked at court, creating a perception of weakness. Their vassals House Reyne of Castamere rebelled against Lord Tytos, and Tywin put down the rebellion personally, extinguishing their house and re-establishing the fearsome reputation of House Lannister. His ruthless destruction of House Reyne was immortalized in the song "The Rains of Castamere" and gave darker meaning to the common phrase "A Lannister always pays his debts," which originally referred solely to the Lannister's vast fortune.
Tywin married his cousin Joanna Lannister and their first children were the fraternal twins Cersei and Jaime. She died after giving birth to Tyrion, which Tywin has blamed his son for ever since. When Jaime was diagnosed with a learning difficulty by a Maester who predicted that he would never read, Tywin sat with his son for four hours a day until he overcame his problems with transposing letters in his mind, much to Jaime's resentment. Tywin despises and hates his younger son, seeing him as misshapen and perverse. When Tyrion was very young, Jaime set him up with a prostitute. Jaime posed her as a common girl in distress that they rescued from bandits. Jaime chased the bandits off while Tyrion comforted the girl. They married, but when Tywin found out he was furious and made Jaime reveal the truth. Tywin paid her for every one of his guards to have sex with her and forced Tyrion to watch. Tywin's hatred of Tyrion has been reciprocated since. Nevertheless, all of Tywin's children are in awe of him and heed his counsel.
Tywin served as Hand of the King to Aerys II Targaryen for twenty years until the Mad King, driven by envy and distrust, rejected Tywin's proposal to marry his daughter Cersei to Prince Rhaegar and made his son Jaime a member of the Kingsguard. As members of the Kingsguard are forbidden to marry, Aerys had effectively robbed Tywin of his heir, which Tywin perceived as a great insult and resigned. During Robert's Rebellion Tywin remained neutral, answering neither the summons of the King nor the calls from the rebels, until the Battle of the Trident. Tywin marched with the full power of Casterly Rock to the capital, feigning he had come to defend it from the rebellion. After the city gates were opened, Tywin ordered the city to be taken and the royal family eliminated in a quick and efficient manner; as a result the city was sacked and the royal family massacred by Ser Gregor Clegane and Ser Amory Lorch. Upon seeing Tywin's betrayal, Aerys demanded that Jaime bring him Tywin's head and that the royal pyromancers set King's Landing ablaze, to which Jaime responded by personally stabbing the Mad King in the back. When Robert Baratheon and Eddard Stark reached the Red Keep, Tywin presented the bodies of the royal family as proof of his allegiance. After the rebellion Robert Baratheon took the throne and married Tywin's daughter Cersei to cement the alliance between their houses.
Cersei gave birth to three children--Joffrey, Myrcella, and Tommen Baratheon. Unbeknownst to Tywin all three children are the product of her incestuous relationship with Jaime. This was discovered by both John Arryn and Eddard Stark Tywin, albeit independently, and bore the revelation that Joffrey--the oldest of the Baratheon children and the heir apparent to the Iron Throne--has no actual claim to rule. Tywin is close to his younger brother, Kevan who is his chief advisor, and Kevan's son Lancel was King Robert's squire, and many secretly believe Lancel gave Robert too much wine during his fatal hunt on Cersei's orders.
Tyrion is accused of the attempted murder of Bran Stark and taken prisoner by Catelyn Stark. Despite their mutual dislike Tywin regards any affront to Tyrion as an affront to the honor of House Lannister as a whole and will not allow the action to go unpunished. Jaime confronts Catelyn's husband Eddard Stark who is the current Hand of the King to Robert. Eddard takes responsibility for Catelyn's actions. They fight, but the fight is prematurely ended when one of Jaime's guards intervenes, injuring Eddard. Jaime then leaves King's Landing. Lord Tywin leads an army of sixty thousand men from the Westerlands to the borders of the Riverlands where he is met by Jaime. He commands Jaime to take half their men and besiege Riverrun, the childhood home of Catelyn. Tywin is incredulous that Jaime didn't capture Eddard Stark when he had the chance on the basis that he didn't win their fight 'fairly' because a Lannister man-at-arms interfered. Robert dies after being injured by a boar while hunting and Joffrey claims the throne. Eddard challenges Joffrey's legitimacy and is arrested for treason in King's Landing.
Tywin moves his half of the force West to the banks of the Trident. Tyrion arrives at the Lannister army having won his freedom in a trial by combat. He is accompanied by the leaders of the hill tribes, Shagga, Timett and Chella, having won their allegiance with promises of supplies. Tywin agrees to the alliance, and is amused when the hill tribes say they will only fight if Tyrion is with them on the field. Learning that the Stark army is moving to meet him in battle, Tywin triumphantly predicts victory, since Robb Stark is an unproven, untested 'green' boy. Tyrion notes that Robb is belligerent and cleverer than he looks. Tyrion bemuses Tywin by suggesting that he would like Robb. The Lannister armies prepare for battle. Tywin tells Tyrion that he will place the hill tribe forces in his vanguard and orders Tyrion to lead them from the front. Tyrion angrily accuses his father of trying to kill him but nevertheless survives the ensuing Battle of the Green Fork. The Lannister force wins a decisive victory but finds the Stark force much smaller than the scouts had reported. Robb had split his forces at the Twins and led the majority west. He won a victory of his own in the Battle of the Whispering Wood and captured Jaime. In King's Landing Joffrey has Eddard executed for his crimes.
Lord Tywin and his bannermen meet to discuss Jaime's defeat and capture. Kevan reports that both of Robert's brothers (Stannis and Renly Baratheon) have made their own claims on the Iron Throne. Kevan suggests a truce with House Stark. Tyrion impresses his father by asserting that Joffrey has destroyed any hope for peace between the Starks and the Lannisters. Tywin dismisses the others and orders Tyrion to go to King's Landing to act as Hand of the King in his place. He instructs Tyrion to keep Joffrey under control and to watch for treason among the small council. He forbids Tyrion to bring the prostitute Shae to court but Tyrion defies him and has Shae follow him to King's Landing.
As the head of House Lannister Tywin is leading his forces in defence of his grandson King Joffrey Baratheon in the War of the Five Kings. He has suffered three significant defeats at the hands of newly declared King in the North Robb Stark and his son Jaime Lannister remains Robb's captive. His regrouped forces are raiding the Riverlands from their base at Harrenhal.
Robb wins a further victory against Tywin's reinforcements in the Battle of Oxcross. Tywin returns to Harrenhal to find his courtyard full of prisoners and Ser Gregor Clegane and his men systematically torturing them to death. He orders a halt to the practice because it is a waste of manpower. He notices a female prisoner posing as a boy. She says that it is safer to travel as a boy and recognizing her intelligence he makes her his new cupbearer. Unbeknownst to Tywin the girl is Arya Stark.
Tywin hosts a war council to discuss a new strategy to defeat Robb. He is frustrated at having underestimated his opponent. Realizing that Arya is from the north he asks for her opinion of Robb. She relays rumours about his supernatural connection to his direwolf and supposed invulnerability. Tywin asks if she believes what she has heard and she says that anyone can be killed.
Tywin berates Ser Amory Lorch for misdirecting a communique into the hands of their enemies. He is surprised to discover that Arya reads better than his bannerman. He later questions the source of her literacy. She is able to maintain her lie while Tywin recalls how he made Jaime overcome his reading difficulties. As Tywin reminisces about his father's weakness Arya steals the letter. She is caught carrying it by Amory. She orders Amory's death through her connection to the assassin Jaqen H'ghar. Tywin is shocked when Amory dies on the threshold of his chambers but does not know who was responsible; he believes he was the one being targeted. Tywin meets with Petyr Baelish who proposes an alliance with House Tyrell.
Tywin dedicates himself to finding the assassin, ordering the torture and execution of dozens of his own men. Arya serves him mutton, a meal he dislikes, Arya says she will go look for something else but he instead invites her to eat, and they talk about Harrenhal and how it came to ruin after Dragons attacked it. He is once again very impressed with her knowledge, and is amused by her will to defy him when he corrects her on how to refer to one's lord.
Robb continues to win victories in the Westerlands, taking captives at Yellow Fork, forcing the surrender of the Crag and closing on Casterly Rock itself. King Stannis Baratheon sails on King's Landing. With both the nations capital and his own seat under threat Tywin convenes a war council. He argues that Robb is a greater threat and decides to march immediately. He leaves Ser Gregor as castellan at Harrenhal and Arya to be his cupbearer. Unbeknownst to him, however, Arya manages to escape Harrenhal.
Tywin arrives in King's Landing towards the end of Battle of the Blackwater with a large force of Lannister-Tyrell soldiers, thus winning the battle. A wounded Tyrion sees them arrive, just before passing out. Cersei is sitting on the Iron Throne with Tommen, when Tywin comes in to announce their victory.
At the ceremony to honor the heroes of the battle, Tywin Lannister rides his horse into the throne room and across to the throne, where Joffrey grants him the honorific title of "Savior of the City" and reaffirms him as Hand of the King to the court. Tywin rides in on his horse to accept the honor, but not before the beast defecates on the doorway of the throne room.
Following the Battle of Blackwater Tywin wastes no time in asserting his authority over King's Landing, shunning his grievously injured son; instead busying himself with his new position of Hand of the King. Eventually Tywin relents and grants Tyrion an audience, who walks in on his father authoring a letter to an unknown individual in which Tywin describes the North as being "ripe for the taking". Tyrion requests his father grant him Casterly Rock, as he is his only heir since Jaime took his Kingsguard oath. Tywin hatefully spites his son for killing his mother in childbirth and saying that he will never make Tyrion heir to Casterly Rock, considering him an abomination and a curse who would humiliate the family name and turn Casterly Rock into a brothel. As Tyrion leaves, Tywin warns him that if he finds another whore in his chamber he will hang her.
Tywin calls a Small Council meeting and has the meeting take place near his own chambers in the Tower of the Hand to assert his dominance. Tywin begins by chiding his fellow council members on their lack of progress to locating Jaime. Varys next informs Lord Tywin that Hoster Tully is dead and most of Robb Starks' forces are in Riverrun for his funeral. Roose Bolton has been left in charge of Harrenhal making him the de facto lord of the castle. Tywin argues that Baelish being lord of Harrenhal in name only serves his purposes just fine: courting Lysa Arryn. Tyrion brings up that this would leave the council without a Master Of Coin and Tywin agrees with his son for once and promptly names Tyrion the new Master Of Coin.
Tywin is later visited by Cersei in the Tower of the Hand. Cersei wants reassurance that all that can be done to locate her brother is being done. Tywin coldly states that if he went above and beyond to free Tyrion then it can be assumed that he would do even more to for his eldest son and heir. Cersei complains that he has always overlooked her in favor of her brothers despite heeding her father's advice and that she can contribute to the Lannister legacy. Tywin criticizes her for failing to rein in Joffrey's excesses and dryly states that he will succeed in doing so.
Tywin summons Cersei and Tyrion for a meeting. Cersei has stumbled upon a Tyrell plot to wed Loras to Sansa, who Tywin now deems the key to Winterfell as Robb's army is disintegrating and his younger brothers are presumed dead. Thus the marriage would give the North to the Tyrells. Irked by their attempt to undermine him after he brought them into the royal family, Tywin counters with a scheme of his own. Instead, Sansa will marry Tyrion. Tyrion tries in vain to dissuade his father, but Tywin will not be swayed, noting that Sansa and Winterfell are a greater reward for his efforts during the Battle of Blackwater than Tyrion could have hoped for. Besides, he says, it is time Tyrion was married. Tyrion retorts that he was once. Cersei's joy at Tyrion's discomfort is short-lived, as Tywin then decrees that she will marry Loras instead. Thus, his children will bind the Reach and the North to the Lannisters. He ignores her protests too, and laments that his children have disgraced the Lannister name for far too long.
Tywin meets with Olenna Tyrell to discuss his marriage pact. Lady Olenna is not enthusiastic about the marriage, deeming Cersei too old to wed the heir to Highgarden. Tywin attempts to force Olenna's hand by mentioning Loras' homosexuality. Olenna bluntly acknowledges that Loras is a "sword swallower", but counters with a barb about the rumoured incest between Jaime and Cersei. Tywin claims that this is a vile rumour spread by their foes, but even if it were true then House Tyrell has already bound itself to the Lannister side. When Lady Olenna still won't relent Tywin threatens to appoint Loras to the Kingsguard, where his vows would mean that the Tyrells' last male heir would be unable to marry or inherit Highgarden. After this compelling argument Lady Olenna graciously admits that Tywin has bested her, and accepts the marriage proposal.
Tywin is summoned to the throne room by Joffrey, who wants an update on small council business and demands to know why its meetings are now held in the Tower of the Hand. Tywin replies that the location is merely one of convenience, and informs Joffrey that he can attend small council meetings in person. Joffrey complains that this would entail climbing a lot of steps, He squirms as his grandfather approaches the throne and icily advises the King that, should he wish, it can be arranged for him to be carried up. Joffrey changes the subject to Daenerys Targaryen, surprising his grandfather by showing that he is even aware of her. Tywin is dismissive, pointing out that the last dragon died centuries ago, and that even if the rumours are true, Daenerys is on the far side of the world and no threat. He urges Joffrey to heed the advice of his counsellors on matters he does not understand. With a smirk, he reassures his grandson that he will advise him when he deems it necessary.
Tywin attends his son's wedding and he is not amused when Joffrey pulls a nasty prank on Tyrion. When others present also begin to snigger, Tywin quiets them with his standard icy glare. At the wedding feast Tywin chastises Tyrion for his drunkenness and tries to impart on his son the importance of putting a Lannister child in Sansa's womb. As the celebration is winding down Joffrey insists on starting the bedding ceremony to humiliate his uncle further. this leads to a very public and embarrassing row between the King and the Master Of Coin. Tywin swiftly defuses the situation and glances at the Tyrell table, where Olenna is quietly smirking at her opponent's frustration.
At a Small Council Meeting, Tywin reports word from Lord Frey of the deaths of Robb and Catelyn Stark at the Red Wedding and of the annihilation of the remainder of the Northern army. Tyrion and Joffrey clash over the latter's intention to serve Robb's head to Sansa. When Tywin intervenes, Joffrey rashly accuses his grandfather of cowardice during Robert's Rebellion. An awkward silence follows before Tywin calmly orders for Joffrey to be taken to bed, despite the King's protests, and instructs Pycelle to sedate him. Once Tywin and Tyrion are alone in the chamber Tyrion dryly remarks that Tywin sent the most powerful man in Westeros to bed without supper. Tywin retorts "you're a fool if you believe he's the most powerful man in Westeros."
The conversation returns to the massacre of the Starks, and Tyrion correctly deduces that Tywin orchestrated it, which his father confirms, adding that Walder Frey was given "assurances" by him in return for carrying it out. Tyrion shrewdly observes that this means the Freys will get all the credit, but also all the blame. Tywin senses that his son finds the action dishonorable but insists it was done to protect the family and end the war. He also reminds Tyrion of his duty to impregnate Sansa because that child will gain them the North, explaining that a man who puts family first will always triumph. When Tyrion questions whether his father has ever put the family's interests ahead of his own, Tywin says he did just that when Tyrion was born: he wanted to throw his newborn son into the sea but instead let him live and raised him as his son, because he was a Lannister.
With his family victorious over the Starks, Tywin has the Stark ancestral sword, Ice, melted down and reforged into two swords. He offers the first to his son, Jaime, who has returned from his captivity after over two years of absence. He then tells Jaime that he is making plans to have him removed from the Kingsguard so that he can return to Casterly Rock and rule in his stead. However, Jaime refuses believing that, if he betrays his oath as a Kingsguard, he will once again be scorned from breaking yet another oath. In anger, Tywin disowns Jaime as his heir and as a Lannister, telling him that he had no family.
During the breakfast of Joffrey and Margaery's wedding, Cersei identifies Shae to her father, who was spotted walking out of Tyrion's chambers by one of her spies. Tywin tells her to bring her to the Tower of the Hand after the wedding. Tywin brings Joffrey his wedding gift; one of the Valyrian steel swords that Tywin had re-forged from Ice. At the royal wedding, Tywin is confronted by Olenna Tyrell about the growing economic problems the Iron Throne is facing, especially with the Iron Bank of Braavos growing restless over their inability to repay the debt. He is later greeted by Oberyn Martell and his paramour, Ellaria Sand. The conversation is filled with veiled threats between Oberyn and Tywin, and he reminds him that his granddaughter, Myrcella, is in Dorne, possibly hinting that he is planning to use her as a hostage against the Lannisters. When Joffrey is poisoned, Tywin covers Tommen's eyes to spare him from witnessing his brother's gruesome death. Along with everyone else present, he looks at Tyrion after the nearly dead king points accusingly at him. Even though many are shocked at the sight of the boy-king's sudden death, Tywin seems indiffrent upon witnessing the scene.
Whilst Tommen is paying his respects to Joffrey alongside his mother, Tywin strolls into the Great Sept of Baelor and begins to discuss kingship with his grandson. Tommen realizes that he is the next king but doesn't know what kind of ruler he will be. Tywin and Tommen discuss previous kings and their failing at length over Joffrey's corpse, ignoring (in Tywin's case) Cersei's angry glares. To Tywin's delight, Tommen gets to the point of the conversation – a king must be wise – relatively quickly. Tywin tells Tommen that a wise king listens to his advisors, even after he is old enough to have some wisdom himself. Tywin then walks Tommen out of the Sept, already prepping him on the duties of marriage. Later on, Tywin walks in on Oberyn Martell's orgy with some of Littlefinger's whores and asks for a private audience. After briefly discussing Oberyn's experience studying poisons at the Citadel, the Hand asks Oberyn to be the third judge at Tyrion's trial. Oberyn initially refuses, confirming that he blames Tywin for Elia's death, but he reconsiders when Tywin offers Oberyn in particular and Dorne in general a seat on the Small Council. Tywin explains that he wants to reunify the realms because he knows that one day, Daenerys Targaryen will return. and The last time dragons assaulted Westeros, only Dorne stood against them.
Tywin is of course present during his grandson Tommen's coronation, he chants, "Long may he reign" along with everybody else, albeit rather unconvincingly. Later that day, Tywin and Cersei are discussing House Lannister's future. They both agree that after an appropriate mourning period Tommen must wed Margaery and that Cersei should marry Loras shortly thereafter to ensure House Tyrell's continued support. Tywin knows Cersei doesn't trust the Tyrells just as he disliked and mistrusted Robert who was too familiar with him. However, because wars are costly, House Tyrell's gold is needed to ease the financial burden. Tywin then admits the truth: House Lannister is broke, the goldmines of the Westerlands were exhausted long before the War of the Five Kings. The crown has been borrowing excessively from the Iron Bank Of Braavos. When Cersei suggests attempting to appease them somehow Tywin explains that there is no bargaining with the bank; you pay up or suffer the consequences, which is where the Tyrells come in. Cersei gets that it's all about the future and legacy of their house and asserts again that her brothers have caused nothing but problems in this respect. Jaime by refusing to follow Tywin's orders and Tyrion by killing Joffrey. Tywin is understanding of Cersei's ill will towards Tyrion, but refuses to discuss the trial with her.
Because of his son's trial that afternoon Tywin is forced to hold a rushed Small Council meeting. All present pay their respects to him except Oberyn Martell. Varys informs Tywin that Sandor Clegane was spotted in the Riverlands and killed five of the King's men. Tywin substantially increases the bounty on Clegane, hoping to tempt men to risk tackling him. Next item, Daenaerys Targaryen's quick assent to power. With three growing dragons, a formidible standing army and two experienced knights to advise her, she is fast becoming a problem. Varys adds that it appears Ser Jorah Mormont has stopped spying on her for them, and is now loyal to her cause. Tywin chides Cersei for allowing Joffrey to humiliate and dismiss Ser Barristan Selmy. Tywin opts for subterfuge instead of a direct attack and commands Mace Tyrell to fetch him quill and paper.
Tommen recuses himself from his uncle's murder trial and appoints Tywin to preside in his stead, in conjucntion with Lord Tyrell and Prince Oberyn. The prosecution calls several witnesses against Tyrion who do an excellent job of painting him as a vengeful monster who wanted to kill Joffrey, albeit nearly all the testimony is exaggerated and circumstantial. Tyrion protests and is quickly silenced by Tywin. During recess Jaime approaches his father. He offers to once again break his oath and take Tywin's seat at Casterly Rock, and in return Tyrion will be granted mercy and exiled to The Wall with the Night's Watch. After Jaime has left Tywin's expression betrays that this is the outcome he longed for. When the trial resumes, the prosecution calls its last witness, who turns out to be Shae, much to Tyrion's horror. Seeing her humiliate and lie about him causes him to snap, cursing the crowd and raging that he is on trial not for regicide but for being a dwarf. Tywin attempts to silence him but Tyrion, adamant that he will get no justice in court, demands a trial by combat, stunning Tywin into silence.
The day of his son's trial by combat, Tywin is helping himself to some wine in the pulvinus above the arena. Pycelle delivers a rather longwinded speech before the fight commences, during which Tywin eyes Tyrion nervously and then abruptly cuts the Grand Maester off. Oberyn Martell has Gregor Clegane on his back and demands to know who ordered his sister's rape and murder and the death of her children, pointing at Tywin. The crowd then watches in horror as the mortally wounded Gregor suddenly grabs the Red Viper and, after loudly confessing his crimes, literally crushes him to a pulp. After the shrieks of horror and disgust have abated, Tywin sentences his son to death.
Now that Tyrion is about to die Cersei tries to back out of wedding Loras. Tywin refuses and threatens to drag his daughter kicking and screaming to the Sept of Baelor if needs be. Cersei then plays her trump card; she admits to sleeping with Jaimie and that all her children are incestuous bastards. Tywin feigns ingnorance, but Cersei sees throught it. She knows Tywin wants her out of the way so he and Margaery can control Tommen. Cersei threatens to tell the world of her incestuous relationship, which would destroy her father's precious legacy. She then departs, leaving Tywin speechless.
On the eve of his execution Tyrion is surreptitiously released from his cell by his brother. He heads to his father's chambers and is shocked to find Shae in Tywin's bed. After strangling her, he takes Joffrey's crossbow and finds his father in his privy. Pointing the crossbow at him, Tyrion makes Tywin admit that he always wanted him dead, though Tywin insists that he grudgingly admired his resilience. He adds that he would never have allowed Tyrion to be executed, being his son. Tyrion whispers that he loved Shae, whom Tywin dismisses as a "whore". Tyrion warns him not to use that word again. He tearfully asks why Tywin sentenced his own son to death, when he knew that he did not kill Joffrey. When Tywin calls Shae a whore again, it is the final straw, and Tyrion shoots him in the stomach. Stunned, Tywin hisses "you're no son of mine". Tyrion replies that he is, and always has been, his son. He shoots his father in the heart, killing him.
As Hand to Aerys Targaryen and the richest man in Westeros, Tywin was believed to be the kingdom's real ruler, an assumption that angered the Mad King. Tywin returned to King's Landing to serve as Hand to his grandsons when they assumed the throne and became the de facto ruler of kingdom. He was killed by his son Tyrion during Tyrion's escape from King's Landing.
Tywin is known for his stoic, intelligent and calculating demeanor, but also his cold, manipulative and often unfettered attitude, even for his family. The only person he held any sentiment towards was his late wife Joanna (whom he loved dearly), having died giving birth their son Tyrion. Since then he expressed disdain towards Tyrion for the death of his wife, as well as for shaming Tywin and their family by being born a misshapen dwarf.
Tywin insists that all he does is for the sake of his family. Tywin's own father Tytos was a generous and caring man, whose bad investments and indecision made House Lannister a laughingstock. Tywin had to rebuild his family's fortunes almost singlehandedly, and sees outward signs of caring and emotion as the same kind of weakness that his own father showed. Ironically, however, Tywin's harsh actions and unwillingness to serve as a caring father figure have resulted in severe emotional problems in all three of his children, who are all terrified of him. Jaime and Cersei have been having an incestuous sexual relationship since they were very young, partially due to the lack of any loving parental relationship either of them had. Tywin actually spent most of their lives away in King's Landing serving as Hand of the King, and with their mother dead, his children were functionally raised by servants. Tywin only sporadically visited his home at Casterly Rock, and on the occasions when he did return he would deal out severe punishment for any transgressions his children committed while he was away.
What little relationship Tywin may have had with Tyrion was destroyed when Tywin had his marriage to the commoner Tysha annulled, then forced Tyrion to watch as he had his guards gang-rape the girl. Tywin wanted to force all of his children into marriage-alliances to benefit House Lannister (as Cersei was later married off to King Robert), and he was offended that Tyrion risked such a future marriage alliance for himself by marrying a commoner for love. The hypocrisy in this is that Tywin himself married for love when he married his own first cousin Joanna, instead of entering into a marriage-alliance with another more powerful noble family. Over the years, Tywin seemed to develop an outright joy in inflicting petty humiliations on Tyrion, such as "rewarding" him on his sixteenth nameday by putting him in charge of the privys and sewers at Casterly Rock. Yet despite all this, Tywin is blind to the true potential his son Tyrion has within him. Due to this, Tywin can't see that through his son Tyrion mirrors that of his own abilities and motives. In a way, Tyrion is Dorian Grey's mirror to Tywin: having Tywin's abilities he mirrors and deforms Tywin's ugly abysses in Tywin's eyes, his deformity symbolising Tywin's inner nightmares, his deeply hidden superstitious fear of the Gods, his carefully covered up lust and Tywin's nonexisting joy of life.
Meanwhile, Tywin possesses a very conservative, patrician set of social values, in which women are suited to securing marriage-alliances and little else, not wielding power on their own. Thus in contrast to House Tyrell, in which female members of the family are trained in ruling and court intrigue as much as the men are, Tywin never trained Cersei how to rule. Without instruction from her father, because Tywin always disregarded her as simply a means to an end, Cersei turned into a queen who actually isn't very skilled at the art of ruling.
Of his three children Tywin has the least shame for Jaime, but not outright respect. Tywin feels disappointed that Jaime wants to continue to be a member of the Kingsguard, as while it is the highest honor a knight can aspire to, it means that Jaime had to swear away his rights to marriage or inheritance, which would leave Tywin's hated son Tyrion as his heir.
Tywin also shares a very controlled relationship with his younger brother Kevan, whom he shaped his whole life to serve as his faithful lieutenant. Tywin's intelligence and efficiency as a ruler cannot be denied, as it was his careful management during the reign of mad King Aerys II (when he was Hand of the King) that allowed peace and prosperity to continue in the Seven Kingdoms - until Aerys provoked Robert's Rebellion. Even then, Tywin cunningly played both sides, giving Aerys advice while providing financial support for Robert Baratheon.
Tywin also lacks the sadistic and bloodthirsty nature of his grandson, King Joffrey I; while he is a vengeful and aggressive man when provoked, Tywin doesn't use violence except to achieve an end and doesn't enjoy cruelty (though he has frequently condoned the horrific war crimes committed by his men-at-arms). Also, in spite of his conservative views, Tywin is much more diplomatic than Cersei when Oberyn Martell introduces them to his bastard paramour Ellaria Sand (though this is partly because he wants an alliance with the Martells) which is ironic, considering all three of Cersei's children are secretly bastards. On the whole, however, for a man who claims to value family above all else, has hypocritically destroyed his relationships with his own children.