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A comprehensive list of rulers of Tianchao, from the semi-legendary era to modern times. Pretender/Claimant rulers of unrecognized self-proclaimed dynasties and division period states/dynasties are included among them.
Rulers of the many dynasties of Tianchao were titled various ways:
- The rulers of the semi-legendary dynasties, Lang, Tong, Cong, and Chi dynasties were titled "Qiu (酋/chief)."
- These "dynasties" were really tribal chiefdoms that existed mostly contemporaneously rather than the proper dynasties that characterized the majority of Tianchao's history.
- Rulers during the Predynastic era dynasties, Ying, Re, Gao, Mo, and early Qiang, were titled "Wang (王/King/Prince)."
- The former three are more properly described as loose confederations or collections of chiefdoms, consisting of several loosely affiliated independent clans who recognized a wang. Proper centralization of authority under a wang was achieved during the early stages of the Mo dynasty.
- The majority of rulers since the founding of the imperial Qiang dynasty are titled "Huangdi (皇帝/Emperor)," but other titles were used, especially during division periods.
- Such titles include old titles such as qiu and wang, but other titles used including:
- "Tianwang" (天王/Heavenly King)
- "Huangzi" (皇子/Prince), Huangfei (皇妃/Princess)
- Rulers of the Arslan-ruled Lin dynasty were also titled "Khagan (可汗/ᠬᠠᠭᠠᠨ)"
- Such titles include old titles such as qiu and wang, but other titles used including:
The Ji dynasty is the namesake of the collective Jiti (集體) people, and in turn the more ethnic names of the empire, Jibang (集邦)/Jiyu (集宇). The Ji dynasty actually existed concurrently with the four other tribes, but united the lands of its neighbors into a unified state.
|Leader of the Ji tribe, he united several of the other tribes into the first unified sovereign state in Zanghuan.|
The Mo dynasty was the longest-enduring dynasty in Tianzu history.
Rulers were titled "Wuwang (巫王/Witch King)."
|The founder of the Mo dynasty, Wuwang Shanmei was a powerful magician, one of the most powerful of the age. Brought order to a nation torn by twenty years of civil war between squabbling kingdoms following the collapse of the Gao dynasty.|
|Son of Wuwang Shanmei, Wuwang Jin carved the Imperial Seal out of a magical piece of jade found atop a mountain during his tour of the realm.|
|Proper centralization of authority was achieved under his rule.|
|Summer & Winter Period|
|Warring States Period|
|The last ruler of the Mo dynasty. Under his rule, the Mo dynasty finally collapsed when it was conquered by the Kingdom of Hong, just around the same time Ji Zhugong, the future Huangdi Chuangjian, came to power in the Kingdom of Qiang.|
The first imperial dynasty of Tianchao.
The Kingdom of Qiang was originally founded as a vassal of the Mo dynasty until it rose to dominance during the Warring States Period.
Rulers of the Kingdom of Qiang before Huangdi Chuangjian established the imperial period were titled "Wang," and the ruling family before him was the "Zhi (治)" clan.
During the Qiang dynasty's reign the empire was referred to as "Tianchao (天朝)" for diplomatic purposes, but with the dynasty's end the name fell out of use until the Zhai dynasty officially adopted it by law.
|Summer & Winter Period|
|Warring States Period|
|The last ruler of the Kingdom of Qiang from the Zhi clan.|
|Ji Zhugong used the title "Wang" from the time he usurped control of the Kingdom of Qiang from the Zhi clan until he established the Qiang dynasty, beginning the Classical Period of the Imperial Period.
He came to power around the same time the Mo dynasty finally collapsed.
As the founder of the imperial period, from then on using the title of "Huangdi," Huangdi Chuangjian is also known to history as Qiang Shou Di (薔首帝).
He proclaimed his dynasty upon his marriage to Lan Mi, the last wanghou (queen) of the Kingdom of Bao – posthumously known as Huanghou Baoxiao (寶笑皇后) – shortly after the pair led their combined armies to vanquish the Kingdom of Hong and annex its recent conquests.
The year of his ascension to Huangdi is the basis of the Luan calendar, though it wasn't adopted until the Chang dynasty.
|The second ruler of the imperial Qiang dynasty, Huangdi Ziyuan was Huangdi Chuangjian's third child and only daughter.
As she outlived her two elder brothers, both of whom died of natural-yet-unknown causes just months before Huangdi Chuangjian's death, most saw it as a sign that she was her father's true successor. Thus she was enthroned as the first female ruler of Tianchao.
It was also during her reign that the term Tianfei (天妃/Daughter of Heaven) was coined. Before her enthronement, official and religious leaders stuck on whether to used the old term Tianzi (天子/Son of Heaven), for her as she was a woman. But she ended their debate by coining the Tianfei, which would serve as the variation for female rulers henceforth.
One of only a handful of recognized female rulers of a unified period (aside for the Qin dynasty, which was ruled entirely by women), Huangdi Ziyuan was the longest-serving ruler of the Qiang dynasty.
|Fourth son of Huangdi Ziyuan out of her ten children.
After his mother ascended the throne, he superseded his elder siblings to the throne by eliminating the competition through systematic assassinations made to look like accidents or simple disappearances. So desperate he was for the throne that he did the same with any relative he felt threatened by, including his younger siblings, cousins, and even his own children. He did so over the course of Huangdi Ziyuan's entire reign, and was so meticulously thorough that his mother never even suspected his involvement.
He ascended the throne himself following the death of Huangdi Ziyuan. His brief seven-year reign is characterized as tyrannically cruel and oppressive, leading to his own assassination at the hands of his own palace staff.
|The last huangdi of the Qiang dynasty.
He was the youngest son of Huangdi Bukong, and the only one to survive to adulthood, including his father's purge of potential threats to his accession. He was placed on the throne at the age of fifteen following the assassination of Huangdi Bukong.
Though huangdi in name, Huangdi Chuantong was little more than a puppet ruler for a regent and the palace officials, whom were still reeling from the tyrannical reign of Huangdi Bukong. However, without the huangdi exercising any central authority, along with the regent's incompetence, the government quickly descended into corruption, weaking the state and hastening the downfall of the Qiang dynasty.
After thirteen miserable years on the throne, Huangdi Chuantong took his own life without naming an heir. Childless, and with most of the imperial relatives eligible for the throne either scattered or dead since the reign of Huangdi Bukong, the Qiang dynasty ended with him.
|Sole huangdi of the Fan dynasty.
A minor official during the last years of the reign of Huangdi Chuantong, the last huangdi of the Qiang dynasty, he came to power in a political coup after a three-year interregnum following the suicide of Huangdi Chuantong.
Although Huangdi Cui managed to stay in power for almost four decades, he was an ineffectual ruler who failed at every meaningful thing he did as huangdi, and nothing he did improved the lives of the people.
His bad rulership eventually led to his and his own dynasty's overthrow, to be replaced by the Chang dynasty following a three-year rebellion/civil war known to history as the Fan–Chang Contention (飯與昌爭辯/Fan yu Chang Zhengbian). He was spared following his defeat and allowed to abdicate, but spent the remainder of his life in self-imposed exile.
Despite his bad rule, Huangdi Cui was still recognized for bringing some order out of the collapse of the Qiang dynasty and given a posthumous name upon his death, but not a temple name.
|First huangdi of the Chang dynasty, Huangdi Haoban came to power after overthrowing the Fan dynasty in a rebellion/civil war, known to history as the Fan–Chang Contention. He began to process of revitalizing the empire following more than half a century of bad rule.|
|The Luan calendar was adopted during his reign.|
The first faun-ruled dynasty, and the first non-human ruled dynasty of the Imperial Period
|Came to power following a palace coup to depose Huang-Taihou San; personal name: Huyu Ying (冴羽瑩); styled: Qixin (琪心), the fourth and final wife of Huangdi Yan before his death, whom had instigated a blood feud between himself and his brothers in an attempt to secure the throne for herself.|
The only gargoyle-ruled dynasty.
|The second and last huangdi of the Shu dynasty. He died suddenly without naming an heir, leaving his children and relatives to fight a bloodbath to succeed him.|
Under the Zhai dynasty, the name "Tianchao" came into use as the official name of the empire, though the dynasty name was still commonly used to refer to the empire, even after the dynasty ended.
|The founder of the Zhai dynasty. Came to power through a coup d'état – referred to in history as the Xinnian Coup (新年政變/Xinnian Zhengbian/New Year's Coup) because it took place during New Year's – to fill the power vacuum left by the death of the Huangdi Xinruan six months prior.|
|The national anthem, "Suoyou Huanhu Tianchao," was adopted during his reign.|
|Son of Huangdi Rao and Huanghuo Mingyuan.|
|Last huangdi of the Zhai dynasty. Dominated by regents for his entire reign, Huangdi Ang's reign saw the complete deterioration of central Zhai rule into the hands of regional warlords.
Enthroned at the age of seven as a puppet ruler for the tyrannical Huai Gui, Chengxiang of Zhai until his assassination, and then kept in a ceremonial position under Qi Pin, self-styled Ducai of Zhai.
Following his defeat of Qi Pin, Huangdi Ang was under the thumb of Chengxiang Kong Song for most of the rest of his reign. He was forced to abdicate to Kong Hao, Kong Song's son and successor, ending the Zhai dynasty and beginning the Four Kingdoms period.
Pretenders, Usurpers, and Self-Proclaimed dynasties
Wars at the End of the Zhai Dynasty
|Lin Lin was a female ruler, one of only a handful recognized in Tianzu history, aside for the women-ruled Qin dynasty.
Originally an outlaw and bandit leader, Lin Lin waged war against the Zhai dynasty itself and all its lords during the Wars at the End of the Zhai Dynasty.
She used the suffering of the people caused by the recent famine and the chaos of the conflict between the regional warlords to justify her campaign, taking advantage of the chaos of the civil wars to better herself and the people.
She stole the Imperial Seal of Tianchao from the Imperial Palace when she led her bandit army to invade and sack the capital while Qi Pin, then the "Ducai" of Zhai, was away warring with Kong Song, and used her "acquisition" of it as justification for declaring herself huangdi of a new dynasty.
She vanished following her final defeat; whether she escaped and went into hiding or died in battle was never known.
|A religious leader-turned-warlord, who proclaimed himself huangdi of the Huang dynasty – also known as Xin Huang (信黃) to differentiate it from the Warring States kingdom of the same name.
Devoted to Lingjiao faith and loved by his people, his rationale for proclaiming his dynasty was that the Zhai dynasty had long-since lost the Mandate of Heaven and that he had received a vision from the gods saying that it had been granted to him for the purpose of saving the nation from self-destruction. He died of illness a year and a half following his declaration. Passing on without an heir, his court quickly collapsed and his army scattered.
|An ethnic Senzai warlord from the Dianqing (靛青) peninsula, who proclaimed himself huangdi of the Dian dynasty.
His rationale for proclaiming his dynasty remains unknown to history. He intended on conquering the rest of Tianchao, but his self-proclaimed dynasty was defeated by Kong Song and his armies following a successful invasion and reconquest of the peninsula two years later. San Yonghao himself was captured and executed. His heirs were spared, but were forced to serve the Kong-controlled Zhai court.
|Chengxiang of Zhai dynasty during the final years of the Wars at the End of the Zhai Dynasty. Father of Kong Hao/Huangdi Gengxin, the first huangdi of Gan kingdom. Did not rule as huangdi, though he was de facto ruler of Zhai during his tenure as chengxiang, but was posthumously honored as huangdi by Huangdi Gengxin.|
|Huangdi Gengxin was the last chengxiang of the Zhai dynasty under Huangdi Ang, the last ruler of the Zhai dynasty.
Son of Kong Song, he took over from his father as chengxiang of the Zhai dynasty. Less than three months following Kong Song's death, he forced Huangdi Ang to abdicate to him, ending the Zhai dynasty,
|Scion of the imperial family of the Zhai dynasty.|
|Second son of Huangdi Qianbei.
He abdicated following a massive defeat by the armies of Gan kingdom, and spend the remainder of his life in solitude.
|Son of Xue Tai. Willingly abdicated to the Xuan dynasty rather than risk a substantial loss of life.|
|Warlord of the Wars at the End of the Zhai dynasty. Father of Chan Ming and Chan Yue, the first huangdi of Zan. Took part in the Coalition Against Huai Gui. Did not rule as huangdi but was posthumously honored as huangdi by Chan Yue.|
|Warlord of the Wars at the End of the Zhai dynasty. Daughter of Chan Kan, and elder sister of Chan Yue, the first huangdi of Zan. Took part in the Coalition Against Huai Gui alongside her father. Did not rule as huangdi but was posthumously honored as huangdi by her brother.|
|Warlord of the Wars at the End of the Zhai dynasty. Son of Chan Kan and younger brother of Chan Ming, father and daughter successive warlords of the Chan clan during the Wars at the End of the Zhai Dynasty.|
|Daughter of Chan Yue, and the only female ruler of the Four Kingdoms Period.|
|Grandfather of Shenji Rui/Huangdi Shanyu. Chengxiang of Gan Kingdom for the majority of its tenure during the Four Kingdoms. Posthumously honored as huangdi by Huangdi Shanyu in 1595TJH.|
|First Huangdi of the Xuan dynasty. At first Chengxiang of Gan kingdom under the last two rulers, he came to power when he forced Huangdi Kong Jiong to abdicate to him.|
|Sole ruler of the Lai dynasty.
A centaur of noble birth, he brought order to Tianchao when he replaced the Xuan dynasty following a three-year interregnum and war of succession within the imperial Shenji clan that followed the death of the Xuan dynasty's last huangdi.
Seventeen years later, Huang Wanjian (later known as Huangdi Qishi of the Hun dynasty) led a coup against him to force him to abdicate, but Huangdi Mashu, placed under house arrest, resisted for three years until he was left with no recourse but to abdicate, ending the short-lived Lai dynasty.
The Hun dynasty was the only vampire-ruled dynasty to rule a unified Tianchao.
Under the Hun dynasty, vampires achieved a lot more freedom and rights than they used to have, to the point that they almost eclipsed other races.
Also, being of a race with great longevity (usually), the huangdi of the Hun dynasty would traditionally abdicate after between twenty-five to forty years on the throne.
Enduring for 562 years – the longest-enduring dynasty of the imperial era dynasties – the Hun dynasty was the last dynasty of the Classical Imperial Era.
|First huangdi of the Hun dynasty. Before becoming huangdi, he was a government official in the last years of the Xuan dynasty and throughout the Lai dynasty.
Partially inspired by Huangdi Mashu's victory, partially because he believed a centaur was unworthy of the Mandate of Heaven, he led a coup of the imperial palace to force Huangdi Mashu to abdicate to him, but Huangdi Mashu resisted.
And so, rather than kill Huangdi Mashu, Huangdi Qishi placed him under house arrest, took control of the government, and declared himself huangdi of the Hun dynasty. Huangdi Qishi pressed Huangdi Mashu for his abdication for three years until he finally broke him and convinced him to abdicate, ending the Lai dynasty.
|Yangyue 1939–Niuyue 1940TJH||6mo|
|The first huangdi part of the power struggle within the imperial family known as the Six Years and Ten Emperors, which precipitated the Crisis of the Twentieth Century.|
|Longyue 1940–Niuyue 1941TJH||9mo|
|Niuyue 1941– Tuyue 1942TJH||1yr, 2mo|
|Zhuyue 1942–Jiyue 1943TJH||10mo|
|Jiyue 1944–Zhuyue 1944TJH||2mo|
|During his reign, with chaos consuming the empire, the Crisis of the Twentieth Century, began when the Jian dynasty broke away.|
|Zhuyue 1944–Zhuyue 1945TJH||1yr|
|During his reign the Zhao dynasty, the other breakaway Crisis of the Twentieth Century, broke away.|
|The last huangdi part of the power struggle within the imperial family known as the Six Years and Ten Emperors. Stability within the imperial family was restored with his coronation and he reigned until the Jian and Zhao dynasties were reconquered.|
|The sole ruler of the breakaway Zhao dynasty.
He was a well-accomplished but unacknowledged general of the Hun dynasty. Declared independence of the land he was given to govern as both revenge and to grab some much-craved glory for himself.
Fought against the Hun dynasty to maintain his self-declared empire until he was slain in battle. His slayer was Wangzi Tao of Souchuan (藪川逃王子/Souchuan Tao Wangzi), a wangzi (prince) of the Hun dynasty, personal name Huang Chuang (衁窗); styled Jingzi (鏡子). Wangzi Tao was glorified in history as the slayer of a rouge general, but was demonized by Yan Tang's followers.
The Kai dynasty was the first dynasty of the Medieval Imperial Era.
|Mentally stunted, he was dominated by regents for the entirety of his reign.
Throughout his tenure, there was constant internecine fighting between regents, imperial wangzi (his siblings, uncles, cousins), and his wife Huanghou Mihan Keyi (米晗可以皇後) for the right to control him (and therefore the imperial administration), causing great suffering for the people and greatly undermining the stability of the Kai regime, culminating in a conflict known as the War of the Twelve Princes (2154–2167AFZ/2575–2588TJH).
Most historians believe and agree that Mihan Keyi provoked the wars between the twelve wangzi in a vain, foolish, and ill-fated attempt to establish supreme hegemony over the realm from behind the throne, or perhaps even usurp the throne herself.
|Youngest brother of Huangdi Ju. Vastly more intelligent than his predecessor, he attempted to exercise some central authority to initiate reforms to restore the empire, but Tai Zize, the regent the dynasty and de facto winner of the War of the Twelve Princes, kept him from exercising any real power.|
|Twenty Kingdoms Period|
|Huangdi who ruled the Kai dynasty during the Twenty Kingdoms period, a time when, in the aftermath of the War of the Twelve Princes, political order of what was then western and northern Tianchao splintered into a series of short-lived sovereign states while the Kai dynasty, whose power continued to wane, continued to rule most of central and eastern Zanghuan.|
|War of the Twelve Princes|
|Pretenders who declared themselves Huangdi amidst the War of the Twelve Princes during the reign of Huangdi Ju.|
|Nanzhou Yuji Wangzi (南粥預計王子/Prince Yuji of Nanzhou). Uncle of Huangdi Ju. Executed for treason.|
|Jiongxiao Tinan Wangzi (囧校題難王子/Prince Tinan of Jiongxiao). First cousin, once removed of Huangdi Ju. Commited suicide following final defeat.|
Western, Central & Northern Dynasties
Three of the Northern Dynasties were rule by ethnically Tukhii/Shengwai families. By this time the Tukhii had only been partially Jitized, and so they used both Jiti and Tukhii names for their kingdoms, the former for diplomatic purposes with Jiti kingdoms.
The first unity period dynasty since the Kai dynsty and the ruling family was the first non-Yinghui ethnic group to rule a unified Tianchao, the Tonglu in this case.
|Brought order back to Tianchao through the reunification of the empire out of the dark age of the Western, Central & Northern Dynasties. Abdicated after ten years so that his eldest son could rule and sought to spend the rest of his life in retirement.
Huangdi Zhaoze died of poisoning by Hunagdi Qipian at the same time as as Huangdi Jinglao did.
|Eldest son of Huangdi Zhaoze, whom abdicated so he could rule. Died of poisoning by his own brother, along with his father, after only two years on the throne.|
|Younger brother of Huangdi Jinglao, coming to power by usurpation after poisoning his brother and father. An utterly corrupt, selfish and tyrannical ruler, the policies of his two-decade reign led to financial ruin and began the downfall of the Zan dynasty. Midway through his reign he was faced rebellion and civil war to remove him from power, but the conflicts ended up deadlocked through the rest of his reign through to the end of the dynasty under his successor.
Died of a plague that swept through the empire and claimed the lives of half a million people near the end of his reign, an event seen by sages of the time and historians as harsh divine retribution.
|Son of Huangdi Jinglao, and the last ruler of the Zan dynasty. He spent the entirety of his uncle's reign in hiding, only coming out again to take the throne following Huangdi Qipian's death.
When he took the throne, his empire attempted to recover, both financially and culturally, from the tyrannical reign of his uncle and the plague near the end of the latter's reign, but did not have the chance to properly do so. The Zan dynasty remained locked in civil war, with warlords and several imperial relatives vying for the throne since the final days of Huangdi Qipian, and his ascension did nothing to convince them to lay down their arms.
His reign saw the conquest of Tianchao by the Qiu dynasty of the Xiyi people, for which it was unprepared but still managed to resist for ten years despite ongoing civil war.
Individuals who claimed the imperial title while fighting the civil war to remove Huangdi Qipian from power or simply take it for themselves. Many of these claimants endured for long after the extinction of the Zan dynasty until their final submission at the hands of the Qiu dynasty.
The imperial family of the Qiu dynasty originated from the island of the same name and was of the Xiyi (爬蟲) people, and was the second non-Yinghui ethnic group to rule a unified Tianchao. Before this period, the island of Qiu was not yet under the sovereignty of Tianchao.
Rulers of this dynasty used the self-made title Julongdi (巨龍帝/Dragon Emperor). Chijingni Linpian, the final ruler of the dynasty, changed the title to Longshendi (龍神帝/Dragon God Emperor) during his reign as a reflection of his vanity in attempt to make himself seemingly a god, but was given the title Chirudi (恥辱帝/Disgraced Emperor) as part of his posthumous name upon his overthrow.
Additionally, while the dwarven invention of black powder had been available for various actions across Marlakcor for centuries, the Qiu dynasty was the first time in Tianzu history it had been utilized as a weapon of war.
|The founder of the Qiu dynasty.
The same year he established his dynasty, seeing an opportunity to establish glory for himself and his people, and revitalize the empire his way, he orchestrated the Xiyi invasion of Zanghuan, known as the Yinghui–Xiyi War, to replace the faltering Zan dynasty, plagued by instability and civil war since the mid-reign of Huangdi Qipian.
Regretfully, even with victory in sight, he did not live to see his ambitions realized.
|Eldest son of Julongdi Pachong, the second huangdi of the Qiu dynasty and the first to rule over the entirety of Tianchao following the final conquest of the Zan dynasty and the submission of the warlords tearing the empire apart since the reign of Huangdi Qipian, ten years after the Qiu dynasty's founding, fulfilling the ambitions of his late-father.
Though not the dynasty's actual founder, he was giving a temple name that implied he was as he was the first huangdi of the Qiu dynasty to rule the entirety of Tianchao
|Grandson of Julongdi Jiayin. One of the longest-ruling huangdi in history.|
|Taishang Julongdi Qiancheng|
|Youngest son of Julongdi Mangshe. Later abdicated for heath reasons in favor of his son, Julongdi Jinglu.|
|Eldest son of Taishang Julongdi Qiancheng. He was later violently overthrown and executed by his own son, the infamous Chirudi Fengkuang Guaiwu.|
|Chirudi Fengkuang Guaiwu|
|Son of Julongdi Jinglu. He came to power by violently overthrowing his own father. Historians speculate that he also had a hand in the death of his own grandfather, Taishang Haungdi Qiancheng, a few years prior so that he couldn't interfere, but this has never been proven.
Chirudi Fengkuang Guaiwu, was a monstrous tyrannical ruler so cruel and evil that his name still lives infamy. He used the title Longshendi (龍神帝/Dragon God Emperor) during his reign as a reflection of his vanity in attempt to make himself seemingly a god, but was given the title Chirudi (恥辱帝/Disgraced Emperor) as part of his posthumous name upon his overthrow.
Throughout his reign he committed numerous atrocities, including: raising taxes despite a famine, massacring entire populations of several towns and villages who failed to pay just for sport, executing random people for amusement, forcing kinsmen to fight to the death, kidnapping hundreds of random women for his harem to fuel is lust, and many more besides.
So infamous is he that during and since his reign his name became became to viewed as synonymous with evil, to the point that people fear to even speak his name, a fear that persists into present day.
He was finally overthrown and his dynasty replaced after a year-long civil war known to history as Muren's Rebellion (木人謀反). Captured alive when the capital fell, he was denied a proper execution and burial. He was instead cursed and buried alive in a tomb that was more of a prison, the location of which was purposely scratched from history to prevent anyone from finding him.
Jiti mage texts call his curse the Xie'e Juexing (邪惡覺醒/Evil Awakening). It's described as the worst of all curses. Should he be awakened he would take his revenge by destroying all of Tianxia; which, in modern terms, would include all of Qirsyllviar, not just Marlakcor.
The first Yinghui-ruled unity dynasty since the Kai dynasty.
|The founder of the Jia dynasty after overthrowing the last tyrannical ruler of the Xiyi Qiu dynasty following a year-long civil war, an even remembered as Muren's Rebellion, restoring Yinghui rule to Tianchao for the first time in almost two centuries.
Generally regarded as the sole true huangdi of the Jia dynasty.
While lauded as a hero for ending the tyrannical rule of Chirudi Fengkuang Guaiwu and the Qiu dynasty, he was well known for his drunken temperament and general lack of interest in actually ruling the empire. Because of this, he is also widely regarded as an inefficient ruler whose policies, or lack thereof, destabilized the regime and the empire, setting the stage for civil war following his death. His inactive rulership also caused the government to descend into corruption and saw the formation of various factions, either supporting one of his brothers to succeed him or for someone else to replace the dynasty.
He died suddenly during the seventeenth year of his reign. His cause of death is unknown, but historians have long suspected that he was somehow assassinated, perhaps by his own hunaghou.
Huangdi Zui is generally regarded as the only true huangdi of the Jia dynasty. The reign and conflict of his assumed son and brothers, part of the wider War of the Seven Emperors, is considered by most historians as an interregnum between his death and the founding of the Gun dynasty.
|Huangdi Zui's direct successor, but was an illegitimate bastard whom was not born him. Huangdi Zui's huanghou, known to history as Jin Ting (尽挺), deceived him into thinking he was. The common belief among historians is that he was born of an affair between Jin Ting and her childhood friend from before her marriage.
He was fifteen years old at the time of Huangdi Zui's death. Though he was given a posthumous name, historians traditionally don't count him among the official list of huangdi.
He was known as a selfish tyrant, though not nearly as bad as his presumed father's predecessor.
Killed along with many of his nearest relatives in a palace coup initiated by Song De, the founder of the Gun dynasty.
|Huangdi Zui's eldest older brother. Declared himself huangdi within weeks of Pang Wu. Died in the Battle of Yongting against the army of Pang Long, almost simultaneously as Song De overthrew Pang Wu and established the Gun dynasty.|
|Huangdi Zui's second eldest older brother. Declared himself huangdi within weeks of Pang Wu. Assassinated by agents of Pang Wu.|
|Huangdi Zui's younger brother. Declared himself huangdi within weeks of Huangdi Hunwai. Died in the Battle of Rongke against the armies of the breakaway San dynasty.
The last of the self-declared huangdi of the Jia dynasty to die. The Gun dynasty had been founded two years prior, and, with most of the imperial Pang clan dead or scattered, his death officially ended the Jia dynasty, though the War of the Seven Emperors would rage for another five years.
Though a pretender, he was the last of the imperial Pang clan to hold the title, albeit illegally, historians and scholars count him among the official list huangdi as the final ruler of the Jia dynasty for conclusionary reasons.
|Sole huangdi of the breakaway Pian dynasty.
Wang of Pian under the Jia dynasty before seceding, his kingdom was conquered by Pang Gou. Sui Han was personally executed by Pang Gou for his rebellion.
|Sole huangdi of the breakaway Nian dynasty.
Wang of Nian under the Qiu and Jia dynasties before seceding, for reasons unknown to all but himself, Ren Jizhi mostly managed to stay out of the fighting between the other six huangdi, save for some serious border disputes with the other two breakaway kingdoms and the Pang clan claimants.
Four years after the establishment of the Gun dynasty, with the Gun army beginning to encroach upon his lands following the fall of Pang Long in battle against the San dynasty, Ren Jizhi challenged Song De to a "duel of kings" and lost. Per the terms of the duel, in which his kingdom would retain independence if he had won, he willingly abdicated, ending his dynasty, was stripped of his titles, and lived out the rest of his days in retirement.
|First huangdi of the breakaway San dynasty. Wang of San under the Jia dynasty, he was a sworn brother Huangdi Zui and a loyal general of during the latter's rebellion to overthrow Chirudi Fengkuang Guaiwu and the Qiu dynasty.
He learned the truth about Pang Wu's parentage by accident in the last days of Huangdi Zui's reign, but the latter died before he could tell him.
Unable to stop Pang Wu from coming to power, and realizing that Huangdi Zui's brothers were going to contend for the throne themselves, Na Bin fled the capital and declared independence, with the eventual aim of conquering Tianchao once the four false huangdi of the Pang clan had killed each other off.
Died of illness the same day his armies defeated Pang Long, widely considered the beginning of the end for his self-proclaimed dynasty.
|Youngest brother of Na Bin, and the second and last huangdi of the breakaway San dynasty. He took over after the death of his brother, as the latter's son and heir died in battle just days before Na Bin died, and Na Ao's elder brothers all died of varying circumstances over the previous decade.
Under his reign, his kingdom was the last resisting faction to fall the the Gun dynasty after a series of substantial defeats, and Na Ao himself committed suicide when he realized all hope was lost.
|Founder of the Gun dynasty. Wang of Gun during the Qiu and Jia dynasties, he is lauded as a hero for bringing order back to Tianchao by replacing the collapsing Jia dynasty during the War of the Seven Emperors. He initially feigned allegiance to the illegitimate Pang Wu for the early stages of the war before he came to power. His reign began when he instigated a palace coup, killing Pang Wu and many of the tyrannical bastard's nearest relatives.
Ended the war with the reconquest of the breakaway San dynasty.
He is viewed by history with mixed impressions: one one hand he is viewed as a hero for restoring order to a nation plagued by decades of strife and war; on the other he is viewed as a manipulative usurper for overthrowing a dynasty to establish his own.
|The last huangdi of the Gun dynasty, his reign saw the end of patriarchal rule to the matriarchal Qin dynasty for over six-and-a-half centuries.
When the capital fell at the end of the Cixing War, he committed suicide once he had heard Qin forces had breached the palace defenses rather than be executed or forced to abdicate.
Out of respect for his resolve, Huangdi Cuilu, the founder of the Qin dynasty, decreed he be given a posthumous name, but not a temple name.
Unique among the rest of the dynasties.
While there were female rulers in past and future dynasties, in both unity and division periods, the Qin dynasty was the only unity period dynasty ruled entirely by women, with the title passed mother to daughter matrilineally. Rulers of the Qin dynasty used the title Niangdi (娘帝), and all children of the the niangdi took their mother's surname as well.
Enduring for over six-and-a-half centuries, it is longest imperial dynasty in the history of Tianchao, and is also famous for being the longest period of female-preference primogeniture in Tianzu history.
While women had achieved high military and political status many thousands of times under previous dynasties, they were difficult to attain and required great merit before they were even considered for those statuses. Under the Qin dynasty, women's rights and status were elevated to equal of that of men, given them equal opportunity, which saw the rise of many influential characters of both sexes throughout the dynasty's tenure.
|The founder of the Qin dynasty.
Her parents were named Sheng Jin (繩筋) and Yuan Lin (媛琳). Yuan Lan's mother, Yuan Lin, was born a commoner woman from a well off merchant family. A bad investment on her father's part led to debts and her being sold into slavery to pay them off. Not long after, Yuan Lin met Sheng Jin, another slave, who became her constant companion until he died. Yuan Lan, the future ruler of Tianchao, was born some time after, and they decided that she would have her mother's surname rather than her father's.
Born a slave, Yuan Lan endured harsh conditions under the tyrannical slave system of the Gun dynasty. Her father died as a result of these conditions when she was just eight years old.
When she was a teenager, Yuan Lan started to speak out against slavery and the oppression of women under patriarchal traditions. Even though she endured harsh punishments for speaking out, including whippings and stripping her nude in public, she kept her head high and never let herself be silenced.
Influential and charismatic, she accumulated some sympathetic listeners, both freemen and fellow slaves, and even some sympathetic nobles, some who turned into devoted followers; among them was Tian Mili (甜蜜梨); styled Aifeng (爱蜂), a young noblegirl who was her oldest friend and sworn sister, and lover.
When she was twenty-one, Yuan Lan's mother was arrested and imprisoned in an attempt to shut her down, but that was the final straw for her. With support from Tian Mili's family, led a slave revolt in Dongtan (東灘), the imperial capital of the time. Her uprising was repulsed from the city, but word of her cause spread far and wide and attracted followers from all corners of the empire, women and men, until they had grown into an army many-thousands-strong within just a few weeks.
A slave no more, at the behest of her most loyal retainers – who believed that the sudden growth and support of her rebellion meant that the Gun dynasty had lost the Mandate of Heaven and had been granted to her – Yuan Lan declared a new dynasty, naming her dynasty "Qin (親)," and coined the imperial title of "Niangdi (娘帝)." Her declaration was met with applause from her entire army and retinue. Her cause then waged war against the Gun dynasty, a conflict known to history as the Cixing War (雌性戰爭) (3277–3284TJH/2856–2863AFZ). The final conquest of the capital seven years later saw the deposition of Huangdi Tanpan and the end of the Gun dynasty. Huangdi Tanpan committed suicide once he had heard Qin forces had breached the palace defenses rather than be executed or forced to abdicate.
Once firmly in power, Yuan Lan freed her mother, who was surprised to learn her daughter was now the ruler of the empire, and outlawed slavery – a policy that endured until the inauguration of the Arslan-ruled Lin dynasty – and ushered in a golden age that lasted until the end of the dynasty. She also revitalized the empire with various welfare projects that improved the lives of people of all races and social classes; and for these reasons she is firmly acknowledged as one of the greatest rulers in Tianzu history.
|Second child and eldest daughter of Niangdi Cuilu. Before she was born, most assumed that her elder brother, Yuan Ping (媛评), Niangdi Cuilu's eldest child, would be her mother's heir, but Niangdi Cuilu shocked the nation when she decreed that successors of the Qin dynasty would only be women.
Niangdi Hongbao came into the throne at the age of twenty five upon the death of her mother.
Under her reign, the current capital, Tangzhai, was founded. But the new imperial palace would not be occupied or completed until the reign of her successor, Niangdi Baolan.
|Third daughter and child of Niangdi Hongbao, she superseded her elder sisters to the throne when they declared their intentions forgo any right to the throne in favor of personal pursuits.
Came into the throne at the age of seventeen upon the death of her mother.
The imperial palace of Tangzhai, the new imperial capital founded during her mother's reign, was completed a few years after she ascended the throne. Thus Niangdi Baolan was the first ruler of Tianchao to occupy the modern capital.
She later abdicated in favor of her chosen heir and spent the remainder of her life in quiet retirement.
|Eldest daughter of Niangdi Chuju.
During her reign, her twin brother, Yuan Huan, attempted to overthrow her in a coup. They were close, nigh inseparable, in their childhood, but grew apart as Yuan Jiang was being groomed to take the throne.
While she was briefly deposed, her loyalists proved greater than Yuan Huan's support and she was and she was restored. Yuan Huan eventually came back with an army to retake the capital and the throne by force, but Niangdi Ci and her government managed to escape. She then, with great reluctance, waged a civil war against her brother to retake the throne.
After five years, she eventually defeated her brother and retook the capital, but, out of love and against the advice of her court, spared his life, merely throwing him in prison for the rest of his natural life. She became his only regular visitor for the remainder of their days. Her mercy, combined with her general gentle nature, earned her her posthumous name.
Claimants & Usurpers
|Twin brother of Niangdi Ci (Yuan Jiang). They were close, nigh inseparable, in their childhood, but grew apart as Yuan Jiang was being groomed to take the throne.
Six years into the reign of his sister, he attempted to orchestrate a coup to become hunagdi. While he briefly deposed his sister and proclaimed himself huangdi, his coup failed when the loyalists of Niangdi Ci proved too many. But he amassed a great support from many opponents of the women-ruled dynasty. His following turned into an army that retook the capital, expelling the loyalist government. Niangdi Ci managed to escaped and his followers waged a five-year civil war to hold the throne.
Yuan Huan was defeated but not executed. He remained in prison the rest of his life, visited solely by Niangdi Ci until their final days.
|He was an alleged descendant of Xiangrikui Gongchan through his father, Luo Yao (蓏要).
The Gong of Mei and the last Chengxiang under the Qin dynasty, he came to power when "convinced/tricked" Niangdi Chuai, the last Niangdi of the Qin dynasty, to abdicate in his favor. A conservative traditionalist educated in the pre-Qin ways, Huangdi Ganju became huangdi purposely to end the women-ruled Qin dynasty and reinstate male-preference primogeniture for the first time in centuries.
However, his dynasty did not begin peacefully, as the Sisters of the Yellow Dragon – a women-only Jiti military order founded during the Western, Central & Northern Dynasties period that had served as the personal army of the Niangdi since the founding of the Qin dynasty – rebelled and began the forty-year Yellow Dragon Rebellion (黃龍叛亂/Huanglong Panluan), a civil war so devastating that it destabilized the Mei dynasty to a point it couldn't recover.
It is for these reasons that he is remembered infamously.
Seven Dynasties & Twelve Kingdoms
Hang Kingdom, along with Sang Kingdom, was never recovered by Tianchao and continued on independently for a time. Eventually, it collapsed into several states that eventually became Dongnan Baquan Banglian (Dongbalian).
Hang Kingdom, along with Sang Kingdom, was never recovered by Tianchao and continued on independently for a time. Eventually, it collapsed into several states that eventually became Dongnan Baquan Banglian (Dongbalian).
Founded by alleged descendants of the Chi dynasty, a dynasty/chiefdom of the Semi-Legendary Era.
A Arslan-ruled conquest dynasty, established in the wake of the Seven Dynasties & Twelve Kingdoms period, and the first non-Jiti dynasty to rule Tianchao. The first three rulers of the Lin dynasty were also rulers of the Gergazard Khaganate, as Lin was founded as a division of the Khaganate (sort of like dual monarchy: two separate states ruled by a single ruler). The first six rulers of the Gergazard Khaganate were never huangdi in their lifetime, but were posthumously declared so following the foundation of the Lin dynasty.
A coup by a rival clan forced the Altanzul clan out of power in Gergazar, resulting in the complete separation of the Lin dynasty from Khaganate.
Upon separation from Gergazar, the ruling family made efforts at Jitization for ease of rule, but retained most of their traditional ways.
|Huangdi Guojia de Chuangshi Renhe Tuanjie zhe|
|Unifier and First Khagan of the Gergazard Khaganate. Posthumously honored as Huangdi of Tianchao by Nait Khan in 4080TJH.|
|Huangdi de Dong Huhe Luoxue|
|Second Khagan of the Gergazard Khaganate. Posthumously honored as Huangdi of Tianchao by Nait Khan in 4080TJH.|
|Third Khagan of the Gergazard Khaganate. Posthumously honored as Huangdi of Tianchao by Nait Khan in 4080TJH.|
|Fourth Khagan of the Gergazard Khaganate. Posthumously honored as Huangdi of Tianchao by Nait Khan in 4080TJH.|
|Huangdi Chusheng de Taiyang|
|Fifth Khagan of the Gergazard Khaganate. Posthumously honored as Huangdi of Tianchao by Nait Khan in 4080TJH.|
|Altanzul Deglem Juram|
ᠠᠯᠲᠠᠨᠵᠤᠯ ᠳᠢᠭᠯᠢᠮ ᠵᠢᠷᠤᠮ
|Huangdi Zhengfuzhe Guowang|
|Sixth Khagan of the Gergazard Khaganate. Posthumously honored as Huangdi of Tianchao by Nait Khan in 4080TJH.
Though not the founder of the Lin dynasty, he was given a temple name to imply he was as he laid the foundation for the conquest of Tianchao.
During his lifetime, even before his reign, he set his sights on conquering Tianchao (known as Tenger (ᠲᠩᠷᠢ) to the Arslan), torn asunder by the Seven Dynasties & Twelve Kingdoms period since the fall of the Mei dynasty. As soon as he became Khagan, he took advantage of the ongoing conflicts to invade what was then acknowledged as the borders of Tianchao and secured much of the Pianpilu (called Delkhiin (ᠳᠡᠯᠡᠬᠡᠢ ᠶᠢᠨ) by the Arslan), but he did not live do see his ambitions fulfilled. His reign and conquests were cut short when he was slain by an assassin on the eve of his planned invasion of Zanghuan (called Zangkhuan (ᠵᠠᠩ ᠢᠬᠤᠠ ᠶᠢᠨ) by the Arslan).
|Gergazar & Lin Dynasty|
|Huangdi Diqi Zuichu|
|Eldest son of Zaluu Khan, seventh Khagan of the Gergazard Khaganate and founder of the Lin dynasty.
Coming to the Gergazard throne at the age of seventeen, he intended to take over where his father left off and invade Zanghuan, but securing his place as the rightful khagan to succeed his father, in competition with his brothers, proved to be a daunting endeavor that took him two decades to achieve.
With his place secure, he finally launched the invasion of Zhingyuan in 4074. Within two years he conquered two Jiti splinter kingdoms and the imperial capital of the Man dynasty, the last of the Seven Dynasties. With the capital under control he proclaimed the establishment of the Lin dynasty as a division of the Khaganate, declared himself hunagdi of Tianchao and claimed the Mandate of Heaven. Within a few more months he crushed the last remnants of the Man dynasty, ending the Seven Dynasties. He made plans conquer the rest of Tianchao, but a need to rest the army and rebuild the infrastructure of his conquered lands forced him to pause his campaign for several years.
Fascinated by Jiti culture and traditions from a young age, under him the Altanzul clan began the slow process of Jitization, becoming more and more like the people they had conquered.
By the end of the first decade of Nait Khan's reign as huangdi, the entirety of Zanghuan was secured – save for the Hang and Sang kingdoms, whose successor states would later go on to form Dongbalian.
Nait Khan intended to invade and conquer Haoyudai, but by the time Zanghuan was secured he and his armies were militarily exhausted and required many more years to rebuild, along with the infrastructure of his newly conquered territories. He died with the ambition of his father still unfulfilled.
|Huangdi Shui Wanchengle Renwu|
|Son of Nait Khan, second ruler of the Lin dynasty and eighth Khagan of Gergazar.
During his reign he set out to conquer Tianzu splinter kingdoms in Haoyudai for the the Lin dynasty, finishing the job Nait Khan started. By the twenty year mark of his reign, the entirety of what was then Tianchao in Haoyudai was secured, finally ending the Seven Dynasties & Twelve Kingdoms period.
|Huangdi Yu Zhongshen Jiemeng|
|Third ruler of the Lin dynasty, and ninth and last Khagan from Altanzul clan.
He was the first huangdi of the Lin dynasty to actually rule it from a place in Zanghuan, choosing the newly-founded Tovguren (ᠲᠥᠪᠭᠦᠷᠡᠨ) – now known as Waiyang (外央) – as his capital.
Khundet Khan died during the Siege of Fanxing against the forces of the Zhiji Rebellion (雉雞暴動), which his forces eventually defeated, without naming an heir. His sudden death resulted in a succession dispute that saw the Altanzul clan being ousted from their position position as Khagan of Gergazar, and the fragmentation of the Khaganate into five separate states.
|Lin dynasty independent|
|Huangdi Tashui Chongxin Huo de Kongzhi Quan|
|Khundet Khan's third son, fourth ruler of the Lin dynasty, and the first to be independent of the Gergazard Khaganate.
Because Khundet Khan died without naming an heir, a succession dispute erupted between Baatar Khan, his brothers and rival clans.
In the end, within a year after Khundet Khan's death, the Khaganate fragmented into five states: Gergazar fell under the reign of the Tsetsgiin (ᠴᠡᠴᠡᠭ ᠦᠨ) clan under Tuimer Khan (ᠲᠦᠢᠮᠡᠷᠬᠠᠭᠠᠨ); Baatar Khan won succession of the Lin dynasty as undisputed huangdi after defeating his brothers; the northern sector became the Shengwai-ruled Shuang (霜) dynasty; the territories in Haoyudai became the Unghwa-ruled Gwan (관/棺) dynasty; the Island of Qiu broke away into the Xiyi-ruled Pan (磐) dynasty.
Baatar Khan and his successors continued to rule the Lin dynasty independently.
|Huangdi Leiming Ban de Mapihe Mingzhi de Long|
ᠠᠯᠲᠠᠨᠵᠤᠯ ᠺᠥᠩᠽᠢ ᠶᠢᠨ
|Final ruler of the Lin dynasty.
Well known as a scholar and a pacifist, his reluctance to take armed action against rebels, preferring to find peaceful solutions, led him to be ousted from his throne by the Ang dynasty.
An Unghwa-ruled splinter dynasty, centered in Haoyudai, that broke away with the fragmentation of the Gergazard Khaganate a year following the death of Khundet Khan, within months of the Altanzul clan's ousting from rulership of Gergazar. Eventually reconquered by the Lin dynasty.
A Xiyi-ruled splinter dynasty centered in Qiu island, the Xiyi homeland, that broke away with the fragmentation of the Gergazard Khaganate a year following the death of Khundet Khan, within months of the Altanzul clan's ousting from rulership of Gergazar. Eventually reconquered by the Lin dynasty.
A Shengwai-ruled splinter dynasty, centered in the Bianjing region of Pianpilu, that seceded into independence with the fragmentation the Gergazard Khaganate following the death of Khundet Khan, within months of the Altanzul clan's ousting from rulership of Gergazar.
Unlike the Gwan and Pan dynasties, which endured for many decades but were eventually reconquered by the Lin dynasty, the Shuang dynasty endured for the better part of five centuries, contemporaneously with the Lin, Ang, Ting, and early-Lei dynasties, enduring many wars with both Tianchao and Gergazar until it was finally conquered by the Lei dynasty.
|Founder of the Ang dynasty, Huangdi Zhanshi is a mixed figure in Tianchao history. He's lauded as a liberator by those who disdained foreign rule over their country and restored Yinghui rule, but denounced as a usurper who took overthrew and killed a peaceful monarch by others.
The same year he toppled Kunziin Khan, he was forced to deal with the invasion of the Yamato Empire to the west, preventing him from restoring to Tianchao the way he envisioned.
The second ethnic Xiyi-ruled dynasty.
The only dwarf-ruled dynasty in the history of Tianchao, and the last non-human unity dynasty to rule Tianchao.
|Founder of the Lei dynasty.
Descendant of powerful mining magnates, he was the Wang of Lei, and governor of Leizhou (雷州), during the Ting dynasty.
While dwarves had served in many powerful positions for thousands of years, he the first dwarf to rule the empire.
|Son of Huangdi Geng and the second ruler of the Lei dynasty. His first act was to move the imperial administration back to Tangzhai for the first time since the collapse of the Mei dynasty.|
A faun-ruled rebel dynasty during the Lei dynasty.
A Shengwai-ruled breakaway dynasty. It was reconquered by the Cui dynasty as it took over from the collapsing Lei dynasty.
|Daughter of Huangdi Shiwu, and the last female ruler of Tianchao. She later abdicated in favor of her third son and chosen successor, Sun Zhuan.|
|Son of Huangdi Qiji, and the current ruler of Tianchao.|
Notes & Trivia
- The lifetime and reign years use the Luan calendar years. There is a 421-year difference between the Luan calendar and the Solramese calendar. I.e. 0TJH = 421BFZ.
- The Jiti characters of the posthumous names of rulers, if applicable, are the name of the dynasty, the name, and their title, in that order.
- For huangdi whose reigns ended before they died, this is an indicator that they abdicated or were somehow deposed without being executed.