Encyclopedia  |   World Factbook  |   World Flags  |   Reference Tables  |   List of Lists     
   Academic Disciplines  |   Historical Timeline  |   Themed Timelines  |   Biographies  |   How-Tos     
Sponsor by The Tattoo Collection
Main Page | See live article | Alphabetical index


This page is about the fictional race. For the language, see Klingon language.

Klingons, a race of humanoids in the fictional Star Trek universe, were the main antagonists in and later became the uneasy allies of the United Federation of Planets. They were introduced in the episode Errand of Mercy.

As the original Star Trek series was written during the Cold War, the Klingons were written to resemble what Americans of that time commonly believed the Russian people and the Soviet Union to be like: belligerent, mannerless, and lacking finesse.

Table of contents
1 Klingon biology
2 Klingon religion
3 History of the Klingon Empire
4 Klingon leadership
5 Klingon Ranks
6 Klingon hand weapons
7 Extent of the Klingon Empire
8 Trivia
9 See also
10 External links

Klingon biology

Roughly humanoid in appearance, Klingons typically sport long manes of luxuriant hair, and for males, mustaches, and beards. Perhaps their most prominent external feature is their ridged forehead. These intricate, bony patterns vary by family line and are an evolutionary remnant of their prehistoric forms, when Klingons had a more extensive exoskeleton and a decidedly crustacean appearance. For a period during the 2260s (during the original Star Trek), Klingons had external features resembling Humans and wore their hair in a more conservative fashion. The differences in the two phenotypes may explain, in part, Dr. McCoy's immediate lack of knowledge of Klingon anatomy when he tried to save Chancellor Gorkon in 2293.

Most body functions incorporate multiple redundancies, such as redundant stomachs, lungs, and livers. This characteristic, known as "brak'lul," makes Klingons incredibly resilient. Other features of Klingon anatomy include a lack of tear ducts, and lavender/pink blood, based on the metal ion manganese according to some unofficial sources. The Klingon lifespan is at least 150 years. Interbreeding is possible with humans (B'Elanna Torres, K'Ehleyr) and Romulans (Ba'el).

Klingon religion

According to legend, Kortar, the first Klingon, along with his mate, destroyed the gods who created them and turned the heavens into ashes. This event is recounted in marriage ceremonies.

Klingon values center around honor. Those who die honorably are said to join the spirit of Kahless in Sto-Vo-Kor. Dishonorable deaths hold the destiny of the underworld of Gre'thor, guarded by Fek'lhr. Gre'thor is reached by passage on the Barge of the Dead, eternally piloted by Kortar, over the River of Blood. The dead are not mourned, but celebrated, and the body is viewed as an empty shell to be disposed of.

History of the Klingon Empire

Ancient Times

The Klingon Empire was founded around 500 on the Klingon homeworld of
Qo'noS by Kahless the Unforgettable.

The Empire went through several dynasties of rulers, experiencing a period between the 2nd and 3rd known as the "Dark Time," a 10-year experiment in democracy.

Around the 14th century, Qo'noS was invaded by the Hur'q, who pillaged many treasures, including the sword of Kahless.

By 2069 a High Council was formed, eliminating the position of Emperor until 2369.

Around the early part of the 22nd century, the warrior class begins exerting a greater influence throughout Klingon society, corrupting, notably, the justice system.

In 2151, a faction in the Temporal Cold War from the 28th Century attempted to alter the timeline by using the Suliban Cabal to incite unrest within the Klingon Empire. This resulted in the first contact between Klingons and Humans.

23rd century

Around 2223, relations between the Empire and the Federation degenerated substantially, with intense hostility lasting until 2293.

In 2266, war between the Federation and Klingon Empire is stopped before it can begin by the interference of the Organians. The Organian Peace Treaty forced on both sides holds each to a non aggression pact and an establishment of a neutral zone in which each side must nonviolently compete for trade ageements with any planets. The Organian influence completely disappears by the time of the Khitomer conference.

In 2267 it is believed that the Klingons and the Romulans forged a military alliance and the Klingons traded several D7 battlecruisers in exchange for some cloaking devices. (It's more likely that the Romulans – whose ships were far slower than those of the Klingons and the Federation – stole the ships from the Klingons, and the Klingon counter-stole the cloaking devices. This would support the hostility that exists between the Klingons and Romulans) The basis for this alliance was grounded in real-world economics; the script of the episode "The Enterprise Incident" called for a Romulan ship to appear, but the original Romulan ship model was not available so rather than go to the expense of building a new one the Klingon D7 model was substituted.

In 2293 the atmosphere of Qo'noS was contaminated when Praxis, one of its moons, exploded. This event was a turning point in relations between the Klingons and the United Federation of Planets, as the Klingon Empire couldn't afford to maintain their excessive military activities and deal with this new problem (parallels with the breakdown of the Cold War and the relationship between the United States and the cash-strapped former Soviet Union were obvious). Thus the two entered into an alliance which was maintained for many years until it was suspended for a couple years after 2372 due to the issue of the Cardassian invasion.

24th century

In 2342 the Klingons and Romulans began a violent war after the Romulans attacked the Klingon outpost Narendra III. The sacrifice of the Enterprise-C cemented the relations between the two powers.

In 2357, Worf (played by Michael Dorn), Son of Mogh became the first Klingon to enter the Starfleet Academy and in 2364 he was assigned to the Enterprise-D as relief conn and tactical officer. (Rank: Lieutenant j.g)

In 2367 the Klingon Civil War began after Chancellor K'mpec was murdered. Prior to his murder, K'mpec had named Captain Jean-Luc Picard his Arbiter of Succession. Gowron was selected, but the House of Duras opposed this decision and the war began. It was later revealed that the Romulans were backing Duras and Duras quickly lost all support, ending the war and leaving Gowron as undisputed leader of the empire.

In 2372, relations between the Klingons and the Federations soured over the issue of the Klingon invasion of Cardassia. When the Federation refused to support the Klingon invasion, Chancellor Gowron withdrew from the Khitomer Accords. For the next year, relations between the two powers was hostile. In 2373 fighting broke out between the two powers. However when the Federation and Klingons discovered that they were being manipulated by the Dominion, an uneasy cease fire was declared. In mid 2373, when the Cardassians and the Dominion became allies, the Cardassians drove the Klingons from their space. Captain Sisko was able to convince Gowron to reinstate the Alliance.

Again allies, the Klingons and Federation turned their attention to the Dominion and the Cardassians as war against them became inevitable.

When the war began, both the Federation and Klingons fought side-by-side against the Dominion, even though the odds were against them. However, once the Romulans joined them the tide eventually turned against the Dominion. In 2375 the Federation-Romulan-Klingon fleet defeated the Dominion with the assistance of the Cardassian fleet during a final assault on Cardassia Prime. Despite the refusal of Sisko and Ross to drink bloodwine with Martok in the Cardassian Central Command, the two powers remained strong allies after the war.

Shortly before the end of the Dominion War, Worf killed Gowron for using bad tactics in the war simply to hurt General Martok's political position. Worf then granted the role of Chancellor to Martok rather than taking it himself.

Possible Future

In Daniels' timeline, the Klingons join the Federation by about 2554.

Klingon leadership

Klingon Ranks

(around ~2300's)

Klingon Rank Translation Equivalent Starfleet Rank
mangHom Cadet Cadet
ne' Yeoman Ensign
lagh Ensign Lieutenant j.g.
Sogh Lieutenant Lieutenant
la' Commander Commander
HoD Captain Captain
'ech Brigadier Commodore
totlh Commodore Rear Admiral
Sa' General Vice Admiral
'aj Admiral Admiral
la'quv Supreme Commander Fleet Admiral (Not a Rank, simply a title)

Klingon hand weapons

To all Klingons, battle is sacred, and treated with much ceremony. Therefore, many advances have been made by Klingons in the field of weaponry.

Extent of the Klingon Empire

Planets and moons currently considered to be, or to have been, under Klingon jurisdiction include Elas, Khitomer, Morska, Narendra III, Neural, Nimbus III (jointly held with the Romulan Empire and the United Federation of Planets), Praxis, Qo'noS, Rura Penthe, Ty'Gokor, and Troyius. Little is known about much of the Empire's holdings, but it is believed to extend almost as far as that of the Federation.


See also

External links