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Romulan Star Empire
Rihannsu Star Empire
Latasam Stelai Rom'lnz
Emblem of the Romulan Star Empire
Dominant species: Romulan
Location: Beta Quadrant
Capital: Ki Baratan, Romulus
Principal City: Krocton Segment, Romulus
Sovereignty: prior to 22nd century
System of government: Aristocratic Authoritarian Oligarchy
Legislature: Imperial Senate
Seat of government: Hall of State
Head of state: Emperor
Head of government: Praetor (Tal'Aura, 2380)
Currency: Talons
Language: Rihannsu
"Misdirection is the key to survival. Never attack when your enemy defends. Never behave as your enemy expects and never reveal your true strength. If knowledge is power, then to be unknown is to be unconquerable." - Narrator of Romulan Intro in Birth of the Federation.

The Romulan Star Empire, also known in some Romulan languages as the Rihannsu Star Empire and as the Latasam Stelai Rom'lnz which when translated meant Star Road of the People, was the primary Romulan state. Located in the Beta Quadrant, the Romulan Star Empire was founded through the unification and conquest of the planet Romulus and of dozens of star systems over many sectors of space. The Romulan Star Empire is known to have existed as long ago as 2152, when it made first contact with United Earth, and is infamous for its ethnocentric, xenophobic, and expansionist foreign policy.



See main article: Romulan history.

The Romulan Star Empire formed after a group of Vulcans left the Vulcan homeworld and resettled on Romulus in the 3rd century.

In the 22nd century the Empire made attempts to destabilize local space eventually leading to the Earth-Romulan War. The Romulans saw defeat in the war and retreated behind the newly established Romulan Neutral Zone for the next century.

The Romulans re-emerged in the mid-23rd century, had several minor aggressive encounters with the Federation and entered a short lived alliance with the Klingon Empire before retreated back behind their borders early in the 24th century following the Tomed Incident.

The Empire re-emerged once more in the mid-24th century following attacks by the Borg and later participated in the Dominion War. After the war the Empire suffered a coup by the Human clone Shinzon which while short lived left the Empire divided and led to the creation of second independent Romulan state, the Imperial Romulan State.

In 2387, the Hobus star went supernova. The explosion was close enough to destroy Romulus. The current state of the Romulan Empire is unknown, however it is safe to assume that it is devastated.


The Hall of State in Ki Baratan

The head of state of the Romulan Star Empire was said to be the Emperor who was aided by a special Legate but in reality the power rested with the head of government who was the Praetor who presided over the Imperial Romulan Senate. The Senate served as the legislature of the Romulan empire where numerous Senators represented their respective territories. Senators ascended into power through either inherited station, riches or elevation by the Senate itself. Romulan aristocracy held a great deal of sway over the Senate, and many of the nobility's richest and most powerful noblemen are members of the government. Beneath the position of Praetor was the Proconsul, Vice-Proconsul and the First Consul. Numerous coalitions dominated the Senate with Consul's serving as leaders of their respective factions whilst the Proconsul managed the Senate.

Though the Senate was an important chamber within the Romulan Star Empire, another powerful body was that of the Continuing Committee who regulated elevation to the various levels of governments. It was the members of the Committee who were responsible for confirming the ascent of an individual to the post of Praetor and had the authority to expel senators. The Committee was typically presided over by the praetor and composed of senators as well as high ranking Romulan officials which at times included the Chairman of the Tal Shiar. (DS9 episode: "Inter Arma Enim Silent Leges")

Ultimately, it was the Senate who represent the people of the Star Empire and are responsible for the appointment of a Praetor. The Praetor themselves serve as the head of the government as well as the supreme military commander. They are also responsible in setting the policy in foreign relations. A monarchy stills exists in the form of the Emperor and the Empress; these positions are nothing more then figureheads with little political power. (TOS video game: Starfleet Command II)

The only other two authorities left that manage the Star Empire include the Romulan Guard and the Imperial Romulan Fleet, which handle the military, and Romulan Civil Administration, who's governors administrate Romulan worlds. (TOS video game: Starfleet Command)

The Tal Shiar was the secret police agency of the Star Empire, ruthlessly enforcing the law upon the Romulan populace. Even the members of the Imperial Fleet and the Senate often lived in fear of the Tal Shiar, with its carte blanche to deal with threats to the state as it sees fit. Very little in the way of free speech or sentient rights exists within the Empire because of the Tal Shiar's actions, as dissent was not tolerated. (TNG episode: "Face of the Enemy")

The Romulan seat of government is the Hall of State in Ki Baratan, Romulus.




Diplomatic Treaties

External Relations

In external application, Romulan political agendas appeared largely unified over the centuries. Their goals focused on maintaining Imperial security through vigilance, and negating the perceived advantages of their rivals. Both goals were accompanied by a near-paranoid reticence to reveal information, even facts as basic as their racial identity, that might illuminate other Romulan ambitions or motivations. Short of war, the means to those ends have generally varied between favored methods:

  • Surreptitious political disruption of rivals – as in the secret relationship with V'Las of the Vulcan High Command in the 2150s, participation in the Khitomer Conspiracy of 2293, the alliance with the Klingon House of Duras from the 2340s, or the aborted attempt to replace key Starfleet officers with clones in the late 24th century. (ENT: Kir'Shara; Star Trek VI: The Undiscovered Country; TNG: Sins of the Father; Star Trek: Nemesis)
  • Limited, surprise or covert military action – as in the use of telepresence-operated drone-ships to spark the "Babel Crisis" among neighboring powers in 2154, a single Bird-of-Prey used to attack the Federation border and gauge its weaknesses in the Neutral Zone incursion of 2266, or the attack on the Klingon outpost at Narendra III in 2344. (ENT: Babel One, United; TOS: Balance of Terror; TNG: Yesterday's Enterprise)

The Empire did resort to open warfare when it was deemed necessary, but in typical fashion, their reasons for war were less than candidly expressed, as in the Earth-Romulan War and the enigmatic Tomed Incident of 2311. Unlike the Klingon objectives of the Federation-Klingon War (2267), Romulans do not appear to have gone to war with neighboring powers under a flag of "expansion", and no competition existed for the development of Class M worlds along the Romulan Neutral Zone. Romulans expressed little resentment for the negotiated Zone they zealously guarded, and following their conflicts, the Empire withdrew behind the safety of the buffer for many decades of self-imposed isolation from Federation affairs . (TOS: Balance of Terror, Errand of Mercy, The Trouble with Tribbles; TNG: The Neutral Zone)

After a clone intended to replace decorated Starfleet Captain Jean-Luc Picard, Shinzon, turned on the Romulans and committed a coup in 2379, the Federation (including Picard himself) helped stop Shinzon's plans of interstellar domination. The Romulans at that point suggested that an era of warm relations may be beginning with the Federation (TNG movie: Star Trek: Nemesis)

The Romulan Star Empire was noted to had poor relations with the Talavian species and had even driven them out of Romulan space. (DS9 novel: Tunnel Through the Stars)


See main articles: Romulan Guard and Romulan Star Navy.

The military wing of the Romulan Empire consists of both a naval branch and one dedicated to the protection of the colonial assets on planets. The former function is fulfilled by the Romulan Guard's Star Navy while the latter is conducted by the Colonial Battalions. A civilian police force known as the Compliance Division also exists which fights criminal activity on Romulan worlds.



The emblem of the Romulan Star Empire is known as “the Eagle”. It is a symbol of military might and honour, displayed on the bridge of every Romulan warship, yet also symbolizes civilian pride in the Romulan state, and is found at public facilities throughout the Empire. Romulan officers, and sometimes civilians, swear oaths upon the Eagle, and defacing the symbol is a serious offense. The original inspiration for the design came when the family emblem of S’Task was crossed with an artistic representation of an avian life-form native to Romulus. The first scout parties to chart the Rihannsu’s new homeworld encountered huge eagles carrying their eggs in their talons; today the Eagle grasps Romulus and Remus in its claws. (ST novel: Exiles) The former is gripped protectively, indeed as a mother cradles an egg, the latter, held in thinner, sharper claws, appears instead as a prey item. The bird itself is spread in an aggressive posture of display, representing the glory and majesty of the Star Empire. Its head is positioned with the beak pointing down, mirroring the triangle on which it is mounted. This triangle recalls the Vulcan Kol-ut-shan, the symbol of Surak’s philosophies, which were without end, but began at a single point, Mount Seleya. (ENT episode: "The Forge") The Romulans have used the same design, representative of the (one sided) noble hatred and honourable feud between S’Task’s followers and Surak’s. On the Romulan banner, however, the point of beginning is missing, as the triangle’s point is detached from any anchoring symbol. This, of course, is because Mount Seleya has been left far behind. Vulcan philosophies, here taken to mean the passionate warrior culture Surak destroyed, are still presented as being without end, widening out and leading the entire galaxy into the glory of the Romulan Empire, whose perfect strength and honour is announced by the slogan always displayed at the inverted triangle’s top. It should also be noted that the triangle resembles a dagger, especially as it is coloured in a dull metallic silver. The fact that the Eagle’s beak mirrors the triangle, pointing with the dagger and looking back towards the sundered beginning, serves to make the symbol an aggressive attack on Surak’s Vulcan, which, while clearly out of sight, can never be out of mind. The emblem as a whole is split into two halves, the Romulus side, on the left, coloured in blood-green to symbolize aggressive strength and passion; the right-hand side, featuring Remus, rendered an icy blue.

The image of the Eagle is mirrored in the design of Romulan warships, which are known as “Birds-of-Prey” or “Warbirds”. Subordinate warriors within the military, especially young cadets, are also frequently referred to as “Eaglets”.(ST novel: Vulcan's Heart)

The Star Empire is driven by a martial philosophy which preaches the dictates of duty, glory and obedience. The members of the military are filled with well trained and disciplined warriors who believe that serving the Star Empire is one of the highest honors available. Certain Romulans are known to believe in the concept of the strong controlling the weak. As such, should weakness be perceived by the Romulans, then it can very well lead to an act of war on the part of the Star Empire. (TOS video game: Starfleet Command II)

The primary information service within the Star Empire is the Romulan Central Information Net. Access is highly restricted and it was protected by a progressive encryption lock which featured a forty-three part cypher key. The Klingons spent many years attempting to crack the database but failed to do so, however, Lieutenant Commander Data was able to break into the system. (TNG: Unification Part II)

Within Romulan society, condemned criminals are allowed a Right of Statement which allows the accused to state fully the reasons they committed their actions. There is no regulation on the content of the material provided. (TOS: The Enterprise Incident). Legal intercessors may be involved in legal matters. (TNG: Unification Part I)






Subject Worlds

Star Systems

Mirror Universe

An equivalent of the Romulan Star Empire exists in the Mirror Universe. In the mirror universe Romulans are ethnocentric (and obsessed with hygiene and alien contamination) to a far greater degree than they are in the regular universe; as a result, they have devoted much time and effort to exterminating conquered species within their borders. The Cl'cli'cl, a race of insectoid humanoids, are one alien race the mirror Romulans were determined to wipe-out. In fact, any time when the Romulans experienced social unrest or defeat at the hands of their enemies, they have herded entire conquered races to camps for what is called "sanitary neutralization". Over the course of three centuries, the Romulans, through their sanitary neutralization, have exterminated seven species and including the Zontak, the Rurun, the Skwahali, and the El-Aurians.

In 2265, aboard the ISS Enterprise, Captain James T. Kirk launched a devastating attack against the mirror Romulan Star Empire which destroyed much of its industrial base. The Romulans and their homeworld would have been occupied by the Terran Empire had not the rise of Klingon-Cardassian Alliance diverted the Empire's attention.

Enemies of the empire are given derogatory names. For example, Terrans are called raalar, a name given to a loud ape that dwells in the swamps of Romulus. Klingons are wuspsak or "worm-eaters", Cardassians are sapha-phaa or "conjoiners with the dead", and the Vulcans are d'kavla-ot-shik or "disreputable ones who must be eradicated".

Romulan arrogance and disdain towards other species has affected the empire's technological development. Romulan ships in the mirror universe do not possess cloaking technology as military high commanders did not believe their vessels should hide from 'alien trash'. (ST roleplay module: Through a Glass, Darkly)

In Diane Duane's novel Dark Mirror the Romulans are extinct in the 24th century as the Earth-Romulan War did not end with just the Romulans' humiliating defeat at the Battle of Cheron, but rather Imperial vessels fought all the way to Romulus and, after destroying Remus, offered the Romulans opportunity to become a subject race of the Empire, but on the eve of the deadline for the Romulans' reply, the entire population of the planet committed mass suicide.


  • Romulan Star Empire article at Memory Alpha, the wiki for canon Star Trek.
  • Romulan LegacyInformation about Romulans including canon and non-canon sources.
Major States in Local Space
Khitomer Accords alliance Ferengi AllianceImperial Romulan StateKlingon EmpireUnited Federation of Planets
Typhon Pact members Breen ConfederacyGorn HegemonyHoly Order of the KinshayaRomulan Star EmpireTholian AssemblyTzenkethi Coalition
Non-aligned states Cardassian UnionDanteri EmpireFirst FederationThe PatriarchySheliak CorporateTezwaThallonian ProtectorateTalarian RepublicUbarrak PrimacyRegnancy of the Carnelian ThroneDaa'Vit ConfederacyMetron Consortium

This article uses material from the "Romulan Star Empire" article on the Memory-beta wiki at Wikia and is licensed under the Creative Commons Attribution-Share Alike License.

ST Expanded

Up to date as of February 07, 2010
(Redirected to Romulan Star Empire article)

The Star Trek Expanded Universe Database is for fanon and related content. See for the canon Star Trek wiki.

The Romulan Star Empire was the primary state of the Romulan people. Its capital was the planet Romulus in the Beta Quadrant and it was governed by the Romulan Senate. A highly secretive state the Romulan Empire was known for its xenophobic and hostile attitude towards other species.



During the 2150s the Romulan Star Empire went to war with United Earth. With its defeat a neutral zone was established between the empire and Earth. The empire then entered a prolonged period of isolation. (TOS: "Balance of Power")

During the mid-23rd century, the Romulan Star Empire left its isolation, returning to the galactic scene. During this period it joined in an alliance with the Klingon Empire trading its cloaking technology for powerful Klingon D7 class cruisers. (TOS: "Balance of Power", "The Enterprise Incident")

The Romulan-Klingon Alliance would eventually come to an end in 2292. (TNG: "Reunion")

In 2311, the Tomed Incident between the United Federation of Planets and the Romulan Empire led to the Treaty of Algeron between the two powers. One of the components of the treaty was a ban on the Federation developing and using cloaking technology. Following this the Romulans again entered a extended period of self imposed isolation. (TNG: "The Neutral Zone", "The Pegasus")

While the Romulans had mostly left the galactic scene they periodically clashed with their neighbors. (TNG: "Yesterday's Enterprise") Following a series of attacks by an unknown force, later believed to be the Borg, along the Neutral Zone led to the Romulan Empires re-engagement with the Federation. (TNG: "The Neutral Zone")

Initially after the Dominion entered the Alpha Quadrant the Romulan Empire stood against them, deploying starships to Deep Space 9 to join the Klingon and Starfleet forces to defend against what they believed to be a Dominion attack against the space station. Several month later the empire signed a nonaggression pact with the Dominion and when the Dominion War began in earnest in late-2373, the Romulan Empire was not involved. (DS9: "By Inferno's Light", "Call to Arms")

In mid-2374, the Romulan Star Empire entered the Dominion War joining the Federation Alliance. The Romulans' entry into the war was sparked by the assassination of Senator Vreenak and the discovery of a Cardassian isolinear rod that seemed to show a Dominion plan for a surprise invasion of the empire. The Romulans assumed that Vreenak had come across the information during a visit to Cardassian space and had been killed by the Dominion to prevent the information from returning to Romulus. In reality, the information on the rod was a forgery as part of a plan by Starfleet Captain Benjamin Sisko to bring the Romulans into the war on the Federation's side. (DS9: "In the Pale Moonlight")

In 2375, the Federation Alliance won the Dominion War forcing the Female Changeling into surrendering her forces. (DS9: "What You Leave Behind") In the aftermath the Cardassian Union was divided into protectorates between the major allies including the Romulan Star Empire. (Section 31 novel: Abyss)

In 2379, the Romulan Senate was assassinated and Shinzon backed by part of the Romulan military and the long subjugated Remans took power. Shinzon almost took the empire to war with the Federation with his plan to attack Earth and devastate it with a thalaron radiation weapon. Shinzon's plans were thwarted and he was killed during the Battle of the Bassen Rift. (Star Trek Nemesis)

Romulan Star Empire agencies

Fanon continuities

RIS Bouteina

After Shinzon's death, the Empire was briefly fractured in two. In 2384, the Romulan Star Empire was led by Tal'aura while Donatra ruled over the Imperial Romulan State until Tal'aura's death. In 2385, both fragments were reunited, with Chulan as Praetor. (RIS Bouteina)

A major blow was dealt to the Empire in 2387, when Romulus was destroyed. The Federation offered to supply relief to the Empire after the destruction of the planet. (RIS Bouteina: "Gogmagog", "Relief and Refuge")

Star Trek: 001

During the 28th century, the Romulan Star Empire entered an alliance with several other regional powers to stand against the Federation, which they saw as corrupted by the long term influence of Section 31. The Alliance and the Federation eventually went to war. (Star Trek: 001: "Red Sand, Dark Tide")

Star Trek: Arcadia

In 2382, the Romulan Star Empire was succeeded by the Romulan Republic. (Star Trek: Arcadia)

Star Trek: Pioneer (PNR)

In 2388, the Romulan Star Empire went to war against the Federation in the year long Federation-Romulan War. (Star Trek: Pioneer (PNR))

Star Trek: Pioneer (STP)

In 2379, the Romulan Commander L'mar, attempted to continue his cloning research using skin samples he collected from Captain Benjamin Kelsoe. His experiments failed and he eventually abandoned his ship, becoming an outlaw and seeking work with Tyson Calok. ("Beware Romulans Bearing Gifts", "The Crossing", "Prime Target")

In early 2381, the Romulans expressed interest in the energy particles located in the Venka Nebula located in the Oralian sector. ("Unresolved Matter")

In late 2382, the Romulan Star Empire entered into the Coalition War on the side of the United Federation of Planets after the Federation sent Ambassador Spock to negotiate the treaty with them. ("Dawn")

Star Trek: Unity

The Romulan Star Empire was replaced by the Romulan Star Republic. (Star Trek: Unity)

Star Trek: Remington

After the Battle of the Bassen Rift, the Star Empire chose to approach the Federation more peacefully. The Romulan Star Navy and Starfleet established an officer exchange program which led to the USS Remington taking on Trevak as her first officer. However, many hard-liners within the Romulan government were opposed to the peace and chose to break away, forming the Romulan Confederacy and taking significant parts of both the Star Navy and the Tal Shiar with them.

External links

This article uses material from the "Romulan Star Empire" article on the ST Expanded wiki at Wikia and is licensed under the Creative Commons Attribution-Share Alike License.


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