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

Table of contents
1 Klingon biology
2 Klingon religion
3 History of the Klingon Empire
4 Klingon leadership
5 Klingon hand weapons
6 Extent of the Klingon Empire
7 Trivia
8 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.

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) 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

The Klingon Empire was founded around 500 C.E 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.

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

In 2267 the Klingons and the Romulans forged a military alliance and the Klingons traded several D7 battlecruisers (Birds of Prey) in exchange for some cloaking devices.

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 lasted about eighty years, ending in 2372 when the Klingons attacked the Cardassians.

In 2342 the Klingons and Romulans began a violent war after the Romulans attacked the Klingon outpost Narendra III.

In 2357, Worf, Son of Mogh (played by Michael Dorn) became the first Klingon to enter the Starfleet Academy and in 2364 he was assigned to the NCC-1701-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.

Around 2374, the Klingons once again joined in an alliance with the Federation, against the Dominion.

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.

In 2375 the Federation-Romulan-Klingon fleet defeated the Dominion with the assistance of the Cardassian fleet during a final assault on Cardassia Prime.

Klingon leadership

  • Molor
  • Kahless the Unforgettable (Founds Empire c. 500 C.E.)
  • Emperor Reclaw (last of the 2nd Dynasty)
  • "Dark Time" (10-year democratic period between 2nd & 3rd dynasties)
  • Emperor Sompek
  • Chancellor Gorkon (died 2293)
  • Chancellor Azetbur (beginning 2293)
  • Chancellor Mow'ga (2nd Empire)
  • Chancellor K'mpec (died 2367)
  • Chancellor Gowron (2367-2375)
  • Emperor Kahless (ceremonial ruler from 2369 coregent with chancellor)
  • Chancellor Martok (beginning 2375)

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.

  • Disruptor Pistol This is the main weapon all klingons carry. It has a power cell and fires a beam of pure energy at a target, vaporizing it. Whether sneaking into enemy territory or going to the market to buy some heart of Targ, this is a tried-and-true choice.

  • Disruptor Rifle This is a weapon used mainly by Klingon shock troops, but it is also favored by weapons merchants and terrorists due to its point-and-shoot simplicity. It is a deadly weapon, similar in construction to the pistol, except with a larger power cell, shoulder stock, and larger appearance.

  • Bat'leth (BAT-leth) The Bat'leth symbolizes the klingon Empire to much of the quadrant. Made of a crescent with four points, the Bat'leth is an imposing two-handed sword. This weapon has been receding from use in open battle, but is still used in "modern" times for ceremonial rites and challeges of power or authority.

  • Mek'leth (mick-LETH) By all accounts, the Mek'leth is similar to the Bat'leth in many ways, but it is not so much a sword as a large knife. It has a curved blade approximately 30 cm long, and is an imposing sight. Another staple of the average Klingon's weapons closet, this is a formidable blade.

  • D'k tahg (dihk-TAGH) The Klingon D'k tahg is a small knife by Klingon standards, mainly used in ceremonies, but also used when concealment of the weapon is highly needed. It has a 20cm blade length, with two small blades that snap out of the sides at the push of a button. This weapon is highly favored, both for its throwing capacity, and for its relatively small size and easy concealment.

  • Painstick The Klingon painstick is a rod about 1 meter in length. It has a grip on one end and a port on the other end to discharge energy. It is also mainly used in ceremonies of endurance, but is sometimes used for torture. It does not incapacitate an enemy unless used repeatedly. It has little or no range, and must be placed close to the target to inflict damage.
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  • ChonnaQ (cho-NOK) Not much is known about the archaic Chonnaq. It is a spear once used in the great Klingon wars; it predates the original Kahless in age.

  • Jejtaj (Jedge-TAHJ) The Jejtaj is a weapon wielded like a pair of brass knuckles. However, with enough practice, one can parry bladed attacks and use it as a rudimentary throwing star.

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 Federation), Praxis, Qo'noS, Rura Penthe, 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.


  • Tribbles (a small furry alien animal) shriek in the presence of Klingons, as demonstrated in an original series episode. Conversely, Klingons are also allergic to tribbles. The Klingons went on to exterminate the popular pet throughout the galaxy and into extinction.

Klingon (tlhIngan Hol) is also the language spoken by the Klingons, created by
Marc Okrand. See Klingon language.

There is also a programming language based on Klingon called Var'aq.

Klingon and Klingonsmith are also last names. Usually seen in Utah.

See also:

External Links

  • Klingons at Memory Alpha, a Star Trek WikiWiki