Samoth is a practitioner of Norse Paganism, like the Scandinavian Vikings many hundreds of years ago. Samoth has stated in numerous interviews that he has never been a Satanist or an Occultist but that he is Anti-Christian and Anti-religious in general. He stated that "Ideologies don't bother me, but it's religion that does."
The group disbanded because they felt they lived up to everything they wanted to in Emperor. They've received a "legendary" status, toured worldwide, have a large catalog of releases and the band didn't want to be another group which "never knows when to quit making music."
In December 2002, Ihsahn won the "Notodden Kommunes Kulturpris", a culture prize given by his home city, Notodden, which has around 12.500 inhabitants. He won the prize because he is considered the most well known inhabitant of Notodden and a great musician, who works as a music teacher, and arranges a lot of concerts for unknown bands. The fact that his band sold more than 500.000 copies also helped him.
Emperor started out as a death metal group in Thou Shalt Suffer. If it wasn't for Euronymous of Mayhem, Emperor would probably be a death metal group today because he's responsible for introducing Emperor to the world of black metal.
Samoth was jailed a short time during the 90's for taking part in church burnings with Varg Vikernes along with other members of the Black Circle in Norway. Ex-drummer Faust was jailed also for the murder of a stranger homosexual in the 90's and was never suspected for it until 2 years later!