The title of Emperor or Empress is the name of a ruler of a specific Empire. It has also been applied to the rulers of the Ysgramor Dynasty, the Reman Dynasty, the Septim Dynasty, and the Mede Dynasty. The Emperor is the Head of State for the entire Empire. The Emperor resides in the Imperial Palace in the Imperial City. With the title inherited through blood by the first-born male child of the current emperor, the title has been bestowed upon daughters and dowagers. Until the reign of Tiber Septim, the title was passed through lineage. With no surviving heirs, Septim was granted the title due to his war prowess. After the death of the last-known Septim heir at the end of the Oblivion Crisis, Martin Septim, the Elder Council struggled to declare an emperor, until Titus Mede I seized the Ruby Throne; thus began the Mede Dynasty.
Since the rule of Slave-Queen Alessia, the Amulet of Kings has traditionally been a symbol of the Emperor's power, with the Aedric relic being the means by which the ceremonial Dragonfires were lit within Temple of the One, at the Emperor's seat of power, the Imperial City. This tradition has been abandoned since during the Oblivion Crisis the Amulet of Kings was shattered and the Dragonfires were lit permanently.
- 1 By game
- 2 Ascension
- 3 The Amulet of Kings
- 4 History
- 5 List of Known Emperors
- 6 Other royalty
- 7 Trivia
- 8 Appearances
- 9 References
- Emperor (Online)
- Emperor (Legends)
Emperors ascend to the throne through bloodlines. The title is usually handed from father to son, upon the death of the former. The title has been handed to dowagers of Emperors, most notably Katariah. In the absence of an heir, the Empires successions were different, during the time of the Second Empire the Akaviri Potentate ruled in the Emperors stead. During the Third Empire the Elder Council elected a Potentate to rule in the Emperor's place until a suitable alternative can be crowned.
The Amulet of Kings
When Saint Alessia rallied the slaves against the Ayleids, Akatosh bestowed upon her the gem that would later be faceted into the Amulet of Kings. The jewel later became crucial in the crowning of Cyrodilic Emperors.
During the Septim Dynasty, newly crowned Emperors brought the amulet to the Temple of the One to light the Dragonfires and keep the barrier between Tamriel and Oblivion shut. Martin Septim, an illegitimate heir, broke the tradition when he destroyed the amulet to invoke Akatosh and return Mehrunes Dagon to Oblivion, thus sealing the barrier between Oblivion and Tamriel forever.
The origins of the first Empire of the Nords date back to the late Merethic Era when Ysgramor and his sons escaped the slaughter of the first human city of Saarthal by the native elves. He returned to Skyrim with an army known as the Five Hundred Companions and lead a reprisal campaign against the elven population.The city of Saarthal was retaken and eventually rebuilt. Ysgramor then ordered the construction of Windhelm which would serve as the capital of the Empire.
In the following years, Ysgramor and his army hunted the remaining elves to near extinction. Once Skyrim had been purged of Snow Elves, the ancient Nords turned their attention to Solstheim where a great number of skirmishes were said to have taken place.
The first Imperial Empire of Tamriel began with Queen Alessia. The Alessian Empire often called the "First Empire," was founded by Alessia after the overthrow of the Ayleid by the human slaves in Cyrodiil. Outside of historical writings, the term more specifically refers to the Empire as it exists since the unification of Tamriel under Tiber Septim, Emperor of Cyrodiil at the end of the Second Era.
The birth of the Reman Empire is shrouded in myth. It is believed that in the first Interregnum, many lords and warlords fought for the throne, while others searched and prayed to Saint Alessia for the return of the peace brought with the first empire. Hrol, king of what is now known as Old Hroldan, specifically went searching for the spirit of Alessia. He had a vision of her standing with Akatosh, and was seduced by the spirit of Alessia. According to one of his shieldthanes, he "did love unto a hillock" in the belief it was Alessia.
Nine months later, the Hill birthed Reman Cyrodiil, who even as an infant spoke with the voice of an Adult. He marched into The Imperial City and was proclaimed a divine emperor. Reman managed to unite the Empire's claims of Skyrim, High Rock, Hammerfell, Nibenay, and Colovia by repelling Akaviri invaders at Pale Pass. Elsweyr and Valenwood were taken militarily in the next decade or so. Morrowind never joined the Empire because, as the war between them was concluding, Reman Cyrodiil III and his son were both assassinated by the Morag Tong.
The Reman Empire fell twice. First it fell at its peak, with the assassination of all Reman Cyrodiil's heirs. This led to the slow decline of the empire under the Akaviri potentate, Versidue Shaie, a Tsaesci, who ruled for 430 years and established the Fighters Guild and the Guild's act. in 2E 324, the potentate was assassinated by the Morag Tong and his son, Savirien Chorak, took power. The new potentate swiftly illegalized all Morag Tong operations, in fear of suffering the same fate as his predecessor and father. This eventually led to the formation of the Dark Brotherhood, which, ironically, was responsible for the assassination of the Potentate and all his heirs in the years to come, thus ending the empire.
A series of non-noteworthy Emperors would follow over the next four hundred years, until the rise to prominence of the Imperial General Talos Stormcrown, also known as Tiber Septim. Septim commanded the army and navy of Cyrodiil through a number of victories or stalemates, slowly bringing the independent states of Tamriel under the umbrella of Imperial Provinces. Talos' own emperor was assassinated in 2E 854, leaving the Elder Council in charge of the government and, effectively, putting Tiber Septim in charge of the Empire. He continued to press his attacks across Tamriel, until in 2E 896, he enacts a truce between Cyrodiil and Morrowind to bring the Dunmer province into the Empire as a mostly independent province, in return for the aid of the golem Numidium in defeating the rest of the continent. Talos succeeds, and is named Emperor Tiber Septim, beginning both the Third Era and the Third Empire, the Septim Empire.
The first few in the line of Septim Emperors ruled with relative peace and prosperity, but within 50 years, mismanagement and political infighting become the norm. In more than one case, wars are fought over the throne, including the notable War of the Red Diamond, fought among three surviving heirs. Potential kings or queens frequently attack the sitting Emperor, or have him assassinated, and the Empire begins to lose its grip on several provinces. It would not be until the reign of Uriel Septim V that the lands of Tamriel were reconquered and the Empire returned to its place of power. Unfortunately, Uriel V also chose to launch an ill-planned invasion of Akavir, in which he was defeated soundly and killed.
The next generations of Septim rule restored the peace, prosperity, and most importantly, the stability of the Imperial line to Cyrodiil. By the time of Pelagius IV and his son, Uriel VII, the Empire was back almost to the height of its power.
Uriel VII's reign was overall a stable one, but was dotted with occasional strife and near-catastrophe. His Imperial Battlemage Jagar Tharn, possibly at the urging of Mehrunes Dagon, imprisoned him and ruled in his stead for several years. The Emperor escaped just in time to thwart an attempt by the King of Wayrest to conquer Daggerfall. By the time of the Dagoth Ur crisis in Morrowind, there was talk of the failing health of the Emperor, and concerns over the future of the Empire.
As it turned out, the Emperor's health was not an issue, but he was assassinated trying to flee the Imperial City after learning of the murder of every known heir to the throne. Their murderers, a cult called the Mythic Dawn, serving Mehrunes Dagon, were preparing Tamriel for an invasion by the Daedric Lord. Septim's one remaining illegitimate son Martin eventually led a defense of the Empire by becoming an avatar of Akatosh and defeating Dagon, but died in the process.
The Empire was left without an heir once more, but this time, with no one even distantly related to Tiber Septim available to be crowned. The Elder Council, which had essentially ruled during the periods of the weakest emperors, was now officially running the Empire. Many provinces floated rumors of dissolving the Empire; after the Oblivion Crisis many provinces left the empire like Black Marsh.
After the death of the last Septim and the subsequent beginning of the Fourth Era, the Elder Council struggled to maintain peace in Cyrodiil, placing new Emperors on the throne—none of which were well-taken by the people of the Empire. Eventually a Colovian warlord named Titus Mede conquered the Imperial City with just a thousand men and crowned himself Emperor. Thus began the Mede Dynasty.
Following the death of Titus Mede II, the Council could not successfully coronate another emperor.
List of Known Emperors
The following is a list of Emperors known to have ruled The Empire of Tamriel and their respective reigns.
- Ysgramor – late Merethic Era.
- Harald (1E 143–1E 221) 
- Vrage – (1E 221–1E 2?) 
- Gellir – (1E 2?–1E ?) 
- Borgas – (1E ?–1E 369)
- Alessia (worshipped as Saint Alessia) – (1E 243–1E 266)
- Belharza the Man-Bull – (1E 266–1E ?)
- Gorieus – (1E 461 – 1E ?)
- Ami-El – (Sometime around 1E 358–1E ?)
- Hestra – (Sometime around 1E 1030–1E ?)
- Shor-El – (Sometime before 1E 1200)
- Reman Cyrodiil – (1E 2703–1E 2762)
- Brazollus Dor – (1E 2762–1E ?)
- Kastav Cyrodiil – (1E ?–1E 2805/2806)
- Reman Cyrodiil II – (1E 2812–1E 2851)
- Reman Cyrodiil III – (1E 2877–1E 2920)
- Versidue Shaie – (2E 1–2E 324)
- Savirien Chorak – (2E 324–2E 430/431)
- Durcorach the Black Drake – (2E ?–2E 541)
- Moricar – (2E 541–2E 56?)
- Leovic – (2E 56?–2E 573)
- Varen Aquilarios – (2E 573–2E 579)
- Clivia Tharn – (2E 579–2E 582)
- Attrebus – (2E 8??–2E 8??)
- Cuhlecain – (2E 852–2E 854)
- Tiber Septim (born Hjalti Early-Beard, later worshipped as the god Talos) – (2E 896–3E 38)
- Pelagius Septim – (3E 38–3E 41)
- Kintyra I – (3E 41–3E 53)
- Uriel Septim I – (3E 53–3E 64)
- Uriel Septim II – (3E 64–3E 82)
- Pelagius Septim II – (3E 82–3E 99)
- Antiochus – (3E 99–3E 119)
- Kintyra Septim II – (3E 120–3E 121)
- Uriel Septim III – (3E 121–3E 127)
- Cephorus I – (3E 127–3E 140)
- Magnus Septim – (3E 140–3E 145)
- Pelagius Septim III – (3E 140–3E 153)
- Katariah I – (3E 153–3E 200)
- Cassynder Septim – (3E 200–3E 202)
- Uriel Septim IV – (3E 202–3E 246)
- Cephorus Septim II – (3E 246–3E 268)
- Uriel Septim V – (3E 268–3E 290)
- Uriel Septim VI – (3E 290–3E 317)
- Morihatha Septim – (3E 317–3E 339)
- Pelagius Septim IV – (3E 339–3E 368)
- Uriel Septim VII – (3E 368–3E 433)
- Martin Septim – (3E 433)
- Titus Mede I – (4E 17–4E ?)
- Attrebus Mede – (4E ?–4E ?)
- Titus Mede II – (4E 168–possibly 4E 201)
- When the Roman Republic, the real world analogue on which the Empire of Tamriel is based, became a de facto monarchy in the second half of the 1st century BCE, at first there was no name for the title of the new type of monarch. Ancient Romans abhorred the name Rex ("king"), and it was critical to the political order to maintain the forms and pretenses of republican rule.
- The Elder Scrolls: Arena
- The Elder Scrolls II: Daggerfall
- The Elder Scrolls Adventures: Redguard
- The Elder Scrolls III: Morrowind (mentioned only)
- The Elder Scrolls IV: Oblivion
- The Elder Scrolls V: Skyrim
- The Elder Scrolls Online
- Brief History of the Empire, Book I
- The Madness of Pelagius
- Pocket Guide to the Empire, First Edition: Cyrodiil
- Rising Threat, Vol. III
- The Amulet of Kings
- Gameplay from The Elder Scrolls IV: Oblivion
- Night of Tears
- Songs of the Return, Vol 2
- Fall of the Snow Prince
- Shezarr and the Divines
- Pocket Guide to the Empire, Third Edition: Eras
- Mysterious Akavir
- The Nightingales Vol. 2
- Rising Threat, Vol. IV
- Songs of the Return, Vol 19
- Plaque outside of the Palace of the Kings
- Frontier, Conquest
- Pocket Guide to the Empire, First Edition: Skyrim
- King Edward, Book X – a work of fiction.
- The Aetherium Wars
- A History of Daggerfall
- Rislav The Righteous
- Pocket Guide to the Empire, Third Edition: Black Marsh
- Tomb in Sancre Tor
- Annals of the Dragonguard
- 2920, The Last Year of the First Era
- Varieties of Faith in the Empire
- The Wolf Queen, Book II
- The Wolf Queen, Book III
- Biography of the Wolf Queen
- The Wolf Queen, Book V
- The Wolf Queen, Book VI
- The Wolf Queen, Book VII
- Brief History of the Empire, Book II
- The Wolf Queen, Book VIII
- The Third Era Timeline
- Brief History of the Empire, Book III
- Disaster of Ionith
- Brief History of the Empire, Book IV
- Assassination of Uriel Septim VII
- An Elder Scrolls Novel: Lord of Souls
- An Elder Scrolls Novel: The Infernal City
- The Great War
- Gameplay from The Elder Scrolls V: Skyrim