[Excerpt from a historical record of government positions and ranks]
It is said that the Office of the Royal Spymaster has existed for as long as there have been Emperors and Empresses. However, in the earliest days of the Empire, this position existed in secrecy. Only after the Morley Insurrection was the position publicly acknowledged, due to the tremendous role that the acting Spymaster played in quelling the rebellion.
Originally, members of the military or officers of the City Watch were advocated for the role, chosen by the Admiralty. In the recent years, the outgoing Spymaster has made recommendations on his replacement from the small cadre of espionage agents serving him. In this way continuity is preserved, since many of the covert projects undertaken by the government are not committed to writing, only communicated in whispers, behind secure doors.
This leads to the most common critique of the Office of the Royal Spymaster, that actions are taken and deeds committed that even the Emperor or Empress is not aware of. This lack of oversight or accountability is a commonly debated topic during Parliamentary sessions, but those who hold the position of Royal Spymaster insist that in order to function the role must exist outside existing bureaucracy or law.