The Ich Dynasty is the current ruling family of the New Sammichian Empire, as well as the preceding Kingdom of Fulfwotz and ancient empire of Xamichia. It is arguably the most well-known royal family in the world, and is by far the largest and longest-surviving in existence; Ich monarchs have ruled Sammichian dominions for well over two millennia and dozens of other noble and royal houses around the Shire can claim distant relation to the influential family. The current patriarch (or Dinastius) is Emperor Sammus Mephistes Inigmax vos Ich II, who rules from Castle Mugg in Fulfwotz. Niflheim Palace in the northern Shire is the ancestral seat of the dynasty.
The Iches trace their lineage from the legendary Xamichine general Nypheres Ichira; after his successful conquest of the Niphuline region in the eighth century PRY, Empress Tenscipia of the Telsid Dynasty rewarded him by inducting him into the nobility (thus creating the House of Vos Ichira). She also decreed that the Niphuline should be renamed in his honor, becoming the Xamichine province of Ichirae. Despite this, she did not make him the governor (Praetorus) of the province as she did not completely trust him to not one day use such power against the Telsids. Over the years, the Vos Ichira family used their newfound social clout to soon become one of the most respected noble houses of Xamichia, famed for the generals and soldiers it produced, many of whom served as war advisors to the Emperors and Empresses. After Callistes vos Ichira guided Emperor Tartenses III through the Siege of Profira in the sixth century PRY, he and his ilk were finally appointed the Praetorae of Ichirae; just as Empress Tenscipia had feared of the family, Callistes almost immediately began plotting against the Telsid Dynasty.
In 533 PRY, Thressindes, the son of Callistes, was recruited to the position of Magistrax Primus, the commander of the Emperor’s elite Magistrax Militae guard. At this point, the reigning Emperor Tartenses IV exemplified the decaying nature of Telsid monarchs after centuries of inbreeding in a dramatic manner; he was described by his contemporaries and court historians as only reaching a height of five feet, being completely hairless, and prone to both epileptic and psychotic episodes. His jaw was deformed to the point where he needed a translator who could dictate his speech into coherent Thrennexian. Tartenses IV was sterile, and being unable to bear children, rule would pass to one of his aunts or uncles upon his death. In 525 PRY, Tartenses died after a particularly violent seizure that came to him in the middle of the night. When alerted by his guards, Primus Thressindes vos Ichira immediately ordered the arrest of all five of the late emperor’s aunts and uncles, as well as his cousins and any living Telsid claimants to the throne. He then claimed the throne for himself, a move that was, in reality, welcomed by many Xamichine people who were dissatisfied with the ineffective and declining Telsid Dynasty. Thus, the House of Vos Ichira was established as the ruling dynasty under Emperor Thressindes vos Ichira. Not long after his coronation, a revolt was staged in the province of Ichirae; afterwards, the Ichira Dynasty shortened its name to today’s Ich in order to distance itself from the events of the rebellion, explaining its odd structure in Thrennexian linguistic conventions.
In general, members of the Ich Dynasty are characterized by their violence, cunning, lust for power, and explosive nature. These traits were so extremely prominent during their Xamichine rule that many historians theorize that the family may have had a genetic predisposition towards mental illnesses such as bipolarism and psychopathy. Their paranoia was another distinguishing characteristic -- for the better part of history, the Sammichian nobility was always viewed as a threat and attempts were made to restrict its power and influence. After the Chancelleric Interregnum in the 18th century in which the Dynasty was dethroned and then manipulated its way back into power, Ich kings and queens became noticeably more subdued and attentive to their public image.
It is generally believed that the Ich Dynasty is the wealthiest family in the world, though not officially known. Over two thousand years of primacy have led to the creation of a immensely vast fortune, otherwise called the Dynastic Fortune. It contains everything from ancient gold-minted coins from around the world to today’s modern currency, treasure and plunder from countless wars, precious artifacts, priceless artwork, and the many Ich Imperial Estates, all of which are privately-owned. The estates alone come in at an estimated worth of $63.7 billion, which easily place it amongst the top five richest families in the world, and to say nothing of their liquid wealth and other physical assets, which are said to push the family’s net worth into the mid to upper hundreds of billions; some even claim they might be the world’s only trillionaires. None of this is public knowledge, as the Iches are extremely secretive, and all of their financiers tasked with managing and investing their fortune would not dare violate their lucrative contracts nor cross their powerful clients.
Under successive Ich rulers, who were some of, if not the most powerful individuals in the ancient world, history would see the brutal consolidation of Xamichine power over the Shire and its subsequent collapse; the rise of the repressive Orthodoxy in the Kingdom of Fulfwotz, the religious extremism inflicted upon its Demmatrodine neighbors, and the annihilation of the Church at the hands of the Dynasty; a renaissance that made a Sammichian dominion relevant in the world once again; a civil war that ousted the monarchy for over a century; an era of ruthless colonialism and imperialism that sparked the Great War, and the following reconstruction and leadership that ensured that the modern-day New Sammichian Empire is one of the Shire’s foremost nations.