Romulus (destroyed 2387)
Multiple Millions (dispersed)
The Romulan people are Vulcanoid in nature as being close genetic relatives with the Vulcan species. This is due to an evolution on the same planet until only a few millenia ago due, then splitting to ideological differences and the mass exodus of the Romulan people. They share many physical and anatomical traits with Vulcans, but they also differ in many small, yet distinct, ways. Romulan males average at about 1.85 meters tall and weighing 84.8 kilograms; in contrast, female Romulans average at 1.77 meters tall and 60.7 kilograms in weight. Like their Vulcan cousins, Romulans posess great physical strength that is multiple times that of the average Human. Romulans also possess the distinct pointed ears, but unlike Vulcans, some Romulans have pronounced forehead ridges in a "V" shape. This isn't native to all Romulans and makes those without them outwardly indistinguishable from Vulcans, but it is more common than the lack of them.
The largest difference, aside from forehead ridges, between Romulans and Vulcans is the brain. The Vulcan brain is highly controlled and disciplined due to the rigorous mental discipline from the teachings of Surak that they follow. Romulans do not follow these teachings, and while sharing a genetically and evolutionarily highly structured and advanced brain, Romulans do not share the same mental discipline or control of passions and emotions. Because of this, Romulans are a very emotional and passionate people who let their emotions guide them. As a result of differing brains a majority of Romulans do not possess the abnormally advanced telepathic centers of the brain that Vulcans do. There are a select few who do possess some sort of advanced higher brain functions similar to Vulcans, however these people are usually contracted by the Tal Shiar into top secret telepathy development programs.
Internally Romulans, apart from the brain, are very similar to their Vulcan cousins. With only two millenia of differing evolution in a somewhat similar world there hasn't been enough time to allow for any drastic evolutionary changes. Romulans also have copper based blood like Vulcans giving it a greenish tint.
- 1 Culture
- 2 Legislature and Justice
- 3 Military
- 4 Language
Romulans are a socially xenophobic, highly patriotic race of people. Other important tributes normally associated with Romulans are arrogance, cunning, superiority, intelligence and racism towards other species. Controlling a vast interstellar empire known as the Romulan Star Empire, the Star Navy is the center of the average citizens social life. As military or government service of some sort is mandatory in the empire, most Romulans choose to enlist in the Star Navy. Because of these developments in military requirements, social stance can be highly dependent on rank and position within the military. The only two thing in the eyes of the people that is superior to military stature is any notable status in the Romulan government.
Tal Shiar service is also notable by the citizens, but only in the form of distaste and fear. One of the Tal Shiar's many tasks handed to it by the government is to ensure loyalty and service by the people to the empire. While the Galae is infamous for its extreme distaste for the Tal Shiar, the average citizen is not too far behind in sharing those feelings.
Another key point in the Romulan society and way of life is the vast belief that Romulans are the superior species compared to any other. This runs for a somewhat racist vision towards certain other species however not all. However within the Romulan species there is absolutely no bias towards one another based on gender, skin color, or sexual orientation. This has summarily caused the Romulans to enter several periods of isolation where they occupy themselves with improving their own being, military, and other pet projects at the time. This has hampered the Romulans ability to expand their space and they've lost much of it to the Klingons and Federation as a result. While they're usually able to obtain their lost star systems and sectors, another period of isolation follows eventually where they'll withdraw back into the core of their territory.
Rules of Etiquette
Cautious at best, xenophobic at worst, the Rihannsu people have a right to paranoia born of their violent history. The experience with the Orion pirates on ancient Vulcan burned a lesson into their minds forever: never trust an alien. In the mind of a Rihannsu, only a Rihannsu person is worthy of respect and civility, all others are discounted.
At the centre of the Rihannsu code of behaviour is the importance of "mnhei'sahe". It is a measurement of inner strength and a status symbol in the culture. Mnhei'sahe, or "the Ruling Passion", centers around a strong appreciation of honour, duty, courtesy and strength. In all interactions between Rihannsu, it is imperative that all parties leave afterwards feeling that their honour, their status, their "face", is intact. To do otherwise would be to deny the mnhei'sahe of the offended party. If the offending party feels he can apologise without himself losing face, he does so. Otherwise, a duel may be in order. Or, if the disgraced party is beyond recall, those present may simply kill him, in order to preserve the memory of his honour and prevent further disgrace. Above all, mnhei'sahe is sensitive to the context of the situation. It is not a hard set rule, in is an unspoken consensus which guides the actions of all Rihannsu.
Rihannsu honour their word, when it is given to another Rihanha -- to break with one's word means dishonour, a fate worse than death. Politeness, respect, and quiet dignity are always required if mnhei'sahe is to be satisfied.
Rihannsu honour power as much as they honour loyalty. The goal of each Rihanha is power -- if not for self or House, then always for the Empire. Rihannsu are always loyal to the Empire itself, not to any one person. For the Rihannsu, power can not be defined in the Terran terms of monetary wealth, it is the power of mnhei'sahe, and it defines the structure within Rihannsu society.
Mnhei'sahe is not a vague or academic term. Wars, executions and deaths of entire Households can be required to satisfy mnhei'sahe. If mnhei'sahe is always intact within the Empire, the Rihannsu believe that they can never lose.
Respect is the basis of Rihannsu society -- to be disrespectful is to show a lack of mnhei'sahe. Showing respect to elders and superiors is a must in day-to-day Rihannsu life.
Every Rihannsu knows by the bearing and actions of another what rank and social status that person has. Non-verbal cues, reputation, military rank, and past experience all dictate the respect owed to each individual Rihannsu.
To an extent, Rihannsu social status and the rank of military personnel operate in parallel. Because the Rihannsu are a militarily oriented society, geared to the protection and promotion of the Empire, military service and accompanying rank are very important indicators of social status.
The person with highest status in the Empire is the "Fvillha", or chief Praetor, the Speaker of the Praetorate and the highest authority within in the Empire. Others peoples statuses are ordered according to rank and civilian status in a long chain until ending with the lowest status, that of a prisoner. Prisoners are considered even lower than slaves -- a prisoner is considered to be without honour and is almost less than Rihannsu.
|Fleet Admiral||khre'Enriov||Civilian Coordinator||Deihu|
|Fleet Captain||khre'Riov||Vice President||Ne'Praetelh||Chief Advisor||Hru'Auethnen|
|Commander||erei'Riov||Junior Executive||Ne'Ihlrah||Chief Ambassador||Hru'Llaudh|
The Rihannsu social structure is actually much more complicated than what is presented above: there are structures within structures within structures, to the point where it is rare for any two Rihannsu to have the exact same social standing. Finally, although prestige and social standing are often related to rank, but social status should not be confused for military chain-of-command! Ranks effect social structure, not vice versa.
At the root of Rihannsu political organisation is the House system. Houses are family groups or clan-like organisations, with hereditary succession structures. Unlike feudal family organisations, however, Rihannsu Houses encompass a much broader spectrum of society. For example, servants of a House Lord are considered part of the family, and adopt the House name and use it as their own. That is not to say that they are equal members, but they are included.
Each house that has its own rank and status accorded in Rihannsu society. Houses are considered either Great Houses or Lesser Houses. Great Houses have many family members that are high in the social standing of the Empire. The members of Great Houses have proven their service to the Empire in past honours and loyalty. Lesser Houses have not received the honour and glory, but serve an integral and vital role within the Empire. It is their quiet service that supports the Empire and brings greater glory to it. The status of House members reflects directly on the status of their House and vice versa.
Within each House, are various positions, as detailed in the following table:
|hru'hfirh||Head of the House||eri'hfirh||Heir of the House|
|ira'dianvum||Oldest Brother||ia'rinam||Oldest Sister|
|v'dianvm||adopted Brother||v'rinam||adopted Sister|
|v-Di'ranov||adopted Father||v-Ri'nanov||adopted Mother|
|v-hru'diranov||adopted Grandfather||v-hru'nanov||adopted Grandmother|
The most important person in a House is the hru'hfirh or Head of House. The hru'hfirh is responsible for the members of the House, maintaining the House's mnhei'sahe, and the day-to-day financial and social dealings of the House. The eri'hfirh, or Heir, assists the hru'hfirh. The status of the House and the responsibilities are decided by the hru'hfirh, but usually the importance of House members is as follows: hfu'hfirh, eri'hfirh, Auethnen, and then Llaugh and Rianov with equal rank. The other status and importance follows as listed above. As you can see is the chart above, there is the added complexity of adoption. An adopted member of the family has the same rank and receives the same respect as a blood member, but with the added responsibility of another House, perhaps. Adoptions are commonplace.
Another commonplace is a unique form of revenge, usually prompted by a mnhei'sahe in the case of the murder of a child, known as "hostage fostering". In this situation, a House steals the children of a rival House and rears them as their own. A family that has loses their child in this manner usually never sees them again.
A typical Rihannsu family is made up of a mother and a father, with as many children as the parents desire. Each family unit is within a House, and Houses can be huge. The family unit does not look to one parent as superior, both mother and father have equal status. Although boy children are favoured, girl children do not have a social stigma. Divorce and separation are rare with Rihannsu families, because the bond between the husband and wife is so very deep. A typical Rihannsu family is very happy and devoted to each other, with the bond of love. Within the family unit the first lessons in mnhei'sahe will be taught, to ground a child in the basic morality of Rihannsu life. The family also includes every single blood member of the House. Each member of the House is responsible to see that all of the children are raised in the proper traditions of the House and that the lessons of mnhei'sahe are taught and learned.
Most Rihannsu males wear pants or slacks that are cut close to the body, and either soft shoes or boots. At formal occasions a House uniform may be worn, unless they are in the military in which case standard issue uniforms would be worn. Robes are not uncommon casual wear.
Most Rihannsu woman wear the same styles as men, but do have a tendency towards more free-flowing garb. Dresses or robes are not uncommon. Females in military service wear the same uniforms that men do.
Most Rihannsu play games such as D'elo which is a game of stones and sticks that can be traced back to an ancient Vulcan. There are Arena games, where athletes (both men and women) show their prowess with various Rihannsu weapons and fighting techniques.
Artistic abilities show the softer side of the Rihannsu personality, balancing a fierce warrior ethic with the sensitivity of an artist. Sculpting, pottery, and carving are the most popular media -- Rihannsu prefer to work in 3 dimensional forms. In addition to the visual arts, there is writing, literature, poetry, drama and lhi, a game of wits and riddles.
Rihannsu relish nature and enjoy the beauty of it -- most are avid hikers.
Romulan names are divided into three sections: a given (first) name, a clan or family (last) name and, sometimes, a middle name. Many Romulans names are unique to one individual, but in larger clans the names can eventually repeat with more than one individual having the same exact name although rare. Within Romulan society a full name is rarely used outside of complete unfamiliarity or full formality. Outside of Romulan society a full name of an individual is simply not known without the Romulan giving out their full name. Because of that, most people outside of the Empire only know individuals by a single name.
Due to the large clan structures of the Romulan Empire, each individual largely makes a personal choice as to which name they are addressed by informally. This is especially prevelent among Romulan military officers who are part of large career military families. Romulan persons may choose to be addressed by either their given or clan names. There are a lot of mitigating factors in that personal decision, however each Romulan makes that choice for themselves.
Like most other cultures a Romulan is decreed a personal name at birth which individualizes them and distiguishes them among other Romulans. There are many names which are common in Romulan society, however heads of clans tend to try to get their clans to shy away from reusing names to avoid confusion and duplicity.
A sometimes more formal way Romulans address themselves is through a middle name. These middle names usually denote a place of birth, or a unique place near a place of birth. These are often used in complete formality, by nobles, government officials, or by someone who may, in the rare instance, share a given name with a fellow member of their clan. These middle names can sometimes be the only deciding factor that separates them on paper.
Surnames are simply family/clan names which are passed down from generation to generation. This is very similar to the way Humans pass down surnames as well. However in Romulan society much prestige and importance is placed upon a persons clan name. A clan name can be a deciding factor in ability to gain position in the Romulan Empire. The more prestegious of a family that a Romulan is in the better off they may be.
There are typically four common prefixes used in Romulan nomencalture. Prefixes are almost completely used in formality, especially surname prefixes. They are:
- i- (full name address)
- ir- (formal address without one or more other names included)
- t' (female)
- tr' (male)
Legislature and Justice
The Rihannsu government is an authoritarian system of checks and balances designed to prevent any one group or individual from monopolizing power for too long a period. Devised in the period following the overthrow of T'Rehu, the Ruling Queen, the Rihannsu system is tricameral in nature.
The Rihannsu Senate, or Deihu'hrrau, is the legislative body responsible for the proposal and passing of legislation. The Senate is divided into two halves: the Lower Senate to propose and pass legislation, and the Upper Senate strictly to veto legislation. This structure provides a certain amount of governmental inertia, which prevents the passing of large amounts of revolutionary legislation and promotes stability.
The Praetorate, comprised of both the military High Command members and civilian legion heads, is the executive branch and judicial branch, charged with implementing and enforcing the laws passed by the Senate. At times, the Praetorate may also propose legislation for the Senate to consider. The Praetorate has a final veto on all military decisions passed by the Senate. The Fvillha, or Head Praetor, is the highest ranking member of the Empire, and has veto power over all decisions, in effect acting as a separate branch of government.
Positions in the Senate, Praetorships, are hereditary. However, constituents can exercise a form of recall on their representatives. If a Senator or Praetor sufficiently displeases those that s/he is supposed to represent, the constituents may finally send the representative a sword, with which to commit honourable suicide. Most recipients of such a recall choose to acquiesce, rather than be brought down by a far less honourable assassination.
- The Praetorate is made up of the military High Command and all legion heads. The High Command is comprised of all officers ranking higher than Riov, and legion heads are those who lead specific organisations. Ex. Head of Diplomacy, Commandant of Academy.
- The Senate as a whole is composed of representatives of the official Houses of the Empire. Each House receives one representative for every five House members. Members of the Upper House are chosen from the Senate as a whole by the Fvillha.
- Each branch of the Senate elects a hru'Deihu'hrrai, or Head Senator, to schedule, organise and chair meetings.
- No one person may sit in more than one branch of the Rihannsu government.
- Any member of the Senate or Praetorate may propose a bill, which must be posted in a public place, and forwarded to the Head Senator of the Lower Senate for initial passage.The Head Senator will place the bill on he agenda of the next sitting of the Lower Senate.
- The Lower Senate then debates and either passes or defeats the bill. If it passes, the bill is forwarded to the Head Senator of the Upper Senate, and notice of First Passage is posted. The Head Senator of the Upper Senate then places the bill on the agenda of the next sitting of the Upper House.
- The Upper House then debates and either passes or defeats the bill. If it passes, the bill is forwarded to the Fvillha, who either vetoes it immediately or places it on the agenda of the next meeting of the Praetorate and posts notice of Second Passage.
- The Praetorate then debates and either passes or defeats the bill. If it passes, the bill is forwarded to the Fvillha, who either proclaims the bill as law, or vetoes it. If proclaimed, the bill is placed on Statute.
- If a bill is defeated by the Upper Senate, or Praetorate, the bill is sent back to Lower Senate, which may either amend it and pass it again, or discard it.
A normal citizen of the Empire can get involved in the government of the Empire by:
- Suggesting ideas to your House representatives in government. Your representatives are there for a reason, so give them your ideas.
- Becoming a Senate member yourself. Your House may want you to become a Senator, and it's an opportunity to get plugged into the system.
The Rihannsu judiciary is based on the principal assumption that the accused is guilty until proven otherwise. Rihannsu court cases are judged by a tribunal. Three judges, two chosen from the Senate, and the chief judge from the Praetorate, decide all cases. The defendant may represent him/herself, or choose the option of having a separate legal representative. The following is the procedure followed after the commission of a crime:
- Victim may either contact the authorities, or apprehend the suspect on his/her own.
- Any and all necessary actions may be taken in the apprehension of the suspect, including the use of deadly force.
- If a suspect is killed and later determined to be innocent, the perpetrator shall be put to death.
- Upon apprehension or death of the suspect, a notice of apprehension and trial date must be immediately posted. All trial dates must be within 1 week of apprehension, for late justice is no justice.
- Apprehended suspects must make a full and complete confession of the truth of the situation. There is no right to council.
- At the trial, the suspect and the plaintiff, or their chosen representatives, confront each other and detail their respective cases to the tribunal. The suspect is under the onus to prove his/her innocence.
- The tribunal delivers its decision and sentences the suspect if guilty. If the suspect is innocent, the plaintiff is subject to penalty.
- Punishment is administered within 1 week of decision. There is no right of appeal.
Rights and Strictures
As the basic treatise of Rihannsu law, let it be proclaimed that all citizens are created equal in honourable potential. All retain the basic freedom to treat and be treated according to their relative merit. The Rihannsu Empire grants its citizens the following basic honourable freedoms:
- The right to procreation.
- The right to own slaves, and to discipline them as necessary.
- The right to commit honourable suicide.
- The right to commerce, subject to the needs of the Empire.
- The right to present a defence at trial.
- The right to apprehend and charge as a private citizen any criminal or enemy of the Empire.
The Rihannsu Empire strictly prohibits from its citizens the following actions:
- The bearing of weapons, unless directed by enlistment or government decree.
- Any action deemed to be against the interest of the Empire.
- Public dissension with the ideals of the Empire.
- Publishing or distributing materials deemed in opposition to the interest of the Empire.
The smallest tactical unit in the Galae is the Ae (Wing). An Ae consists of five Warbirds and a luht'Ehrefv (Auxillary Squadron). The Ae is commanded by an Enarrain and is the smallest unit capable of sustained, independent operations. The luht'Ehrefv consists of a variable number of supply craft, transports and smaller warcraft and is commanded by a khre'Riov. The individual Warbirds of an Ae are often sent on assignments that may carry them away from the rest of the Warbirds in the Ae but most Enarrains are careful not to scatter their ships too widely.
A Kala'thei (Strike Force) is the next largest unit and consists of two Ae. A Kala'thei is commanded by an erei'Enriov and only deploys as a formation when a situation calls for extreme firepower. The erei'Enriov will usually try to keep his two Ae within a sector or so of each other.
A Legaei (Legion) is the largest unit in the Galae. It consists of two Kala'thei and is commanded by an Enriov. A Legaei has a strength of twenty Warbirds and over one hundred other vessels. It is responsible for the protection of a large proportion of the Empire. There were three Legaeiin up until the Tal Shiar/Obsidian Order incident, where the better part of half a Legaei was destroyed. At the present, the Legaei Plaeh (Blood Legion) which consisted mostly of vessels seconded to Tal Shiar control, is undergoing reconstruction as a Galae Legaei, a move which has angered the Tal Shiar. The newly commissioned Ae Sienae (Sword Wing) is the first Ae of the Kala'thei Plaeh (Blood Force). Kala'thei Plaeh joins the old Kala'thei Aehallh (Ghost Force) which contains the remnants of the Legaei's Tal Shiar controlled-vessels.
One thing they agreed on quickly was that they could not stop being Vulcan while they still spoke the language. A team of semanticists and poets, S'task among them, began building the Travelers' new language just after the ships' keels were flown. They did not, of course, try to divorce it completely from Vulcan, but they went back to the original Old High Vulcan roots and "aged" the words in another direction, as it were--producing a language as different from its ancient parent and the other "fullgrown" tongue as Basque is different from Spanish and their parent, Latin. The new tongue was a softer one, with fewer fricatives than Vulcan, and many aspirants; long broad vowels and liquid consonants combinations, both fairly rare in Vulcan, were made commonplace in the new language. To Terran ears it frequently sounds like a combination of Latin and Welsh. The language cam strangely to Vulcan ears at first, but its grammar and syntax were grossly familiar, and over the years of Flight, the Travelers spoke it with increasing pleasure and pride. From it they took what was to be their new name, which by attachment became the language's also. Seheik, "the declared", became rihanh in the new language. This, in the adjective form, became rihannsu. The building of the language is often overlooked in studies of Rihannsu culture. It deserves more attention than there is room to give here--the only "made" language ever to be successfully adopted by an entire planetary population.