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The Romulans are a fictional race of alien humanoids within Star Trek. First appearing in the original Star Trek series in the 1966 episode "Balance of Terror", they have since made appearances in all the main later Star Trek series: The Animated Series, The Next Generation, Deep Space Nine, Voyager and Enterprise. In addition, they have appeared in various spin-off media, and prominently in the two films Star Trek Nemesis (2002) and Star Trek (2009).

Throughout the series they are generally depicted as antagonists, who are always at war or in an uneasy truce with the United Federation of Planets, the show's galactic organization of which Earth is a member.

The Romulans also act as a counterpoint to the logical Vulcan race who share a common ancestry. As such, the Romulans are characterized as passionate, cunning, and opportunistic — in every way the opposite of the logical Vulcans. The Romulans are also the dominant race of the Romulan Star Empire, the largest empire in the Beta Quadrant of the Milky Way galaxy (although its positioning in the Beta Quadrant is never mentioned in any film or television episode and indeed several episodes of Deep Space Nine imply it is in the Alpha Quadrant).

The Romulans were created by Paul Schneider, who said "it was a matter of developing a good Romanesque set of admirable antagonists ... an extension of the Roman civilization to the point of space travel". There are some differences in their history and the way they are portrayed on television, in the motion pictures and in several books by Diane Duane, called the Rihannsu series, after the term they use to refer to themselves in their Romulan native language.


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