The Great Manifest Period of the Galactic Republic was a span of time that lasted from 20,000 BBY to 17,018 BBY. It was characterized by increased movement into the Slice and the establishment of the Expansion Region in its Rimward territories. Even as the Republic expanded astrographically, the government expanded its bureaucracy. The limit of fifty systems per sector that had been set by the early Republic continued to be ignored, causing already burgeoning sectors in the newly colonized areas of galactic space to be virtually ungovernable. Additionally, the era featured the creation of the Metellos Trade Route, which connected Coruscant to Metellos and other points west of the galactic center. The new hyperspace route increased trade among the newly connected systems. Around 2,000 years thereafter, the bureaucracy expanded with the establishment of the Bureau of Ships and Services to regulate and manage transportation across the galactic community.
Culturally, the Republic was undergoing change, as well. Vianism, a religion that had developed among the Core Worlds, became non-extant on its generative planets; however, it spread into the expanding regions of the galaxy and took hold within the Kanz sector. Additionally, the famed Shawken Spire saw its destruction during the Great Manifest Period, an event that was remembered over 8,000 years later. All the while, outside of Republic space, the two planets Neona and Kamino underwent dramatic climate changes. These events, which began during the Great Manifest Period, caused extinction for the native species of Neona and forced adaption of the Kaminoan species. Nevertheless, the era and its corresponding boom were brought to an abrupt end by internal strife in the form of the First Alsakan Conflict.
- See also: Expansionist Era
Following the creation of the Galactic Republic, the Expansionist Era featured steady but limited growth to Republic space until its terminus in 20,000 BBY. Most of the known galactic community was confined to the Core Worlds and other planets that lined the existing hyperspace routes of the Perlemian Trade Route and the early legs of the Corellian Run. Outside of Republic space, however, interstellar alliances, such as Hutt Space, the Herglic Trade Empire, and the Tion Cluster, existed along with numerous yet-unknown, but inhabited, worlds.
As the years passed, the Republic continued to expand. Exploration into the regions colloquially known as "Wild Space" and the blazing of new hyperspace routes were regarded as dangerous endeavors. The risks notwithstanding, the Republic was expanding into the area of space that later became known as "the Slice." By 100 years before the Great Manifest Period began, many worlds in the Inner Rim and Colonies had been settled. Additionally, some cultures had begun Rimward migration during this time. Among them, the Etti had fled the Core Worlds as a reaction to persecution at the hands of the what they viewed as the Republic's oppressive and tyrannical government. These people had terraformed the planet Etti IV and relocated outside of the Republic boundaries—and Coruscant's bureaucracy.
The galaxy during the Great Manifest Period
Commerce and politics
Early expansion and bureaucratic growth
The Great Manifest Period of the Galactic Republic began in 20,000 BBY. Planets such as Alsakan, Corellia, and Coruscant continued the trend of expansion and settlement deeper into "the Slice," populating the Expansion Region. The colonization and expansion had become institutionalized during this time, with companies and planets vying for resources and settlements. Corellia and Coruscant were able to stake claim to the choicest locations along hyperspace routes, however, prompting resentment to brood on Alsakan. Within the Slice proper, colonists and corporations from Alsakan and Coruscant aggressively competed for new systems in which to establish their hold, while Corellia largely staked its claim south of the galactic center.
About 20,000 BBY, the Core World planet Metellos was experiencing the domestic problems of overpopulation and a lack of trade. The planetary government commissioned a new hyperspace route to connect eastward, to Coruscant, with the intent of easing its struggle. Additionally, the planet hoped that the new hyperspace route would extend west of the Core in a manner analogous to the super-routes of the Perlemian Trade Route and the Corellian Run, which connected far-flung regions of space with the Core. When the route reached its completion, the new Metellos Trade Route connected eastward to Coruscant as desired, but the trail only extended westward to Orooturoo due to anomalous eddies within hyperspace west of the Core. Ultimately, trade with Coruscant marginally increased, but commercial traffic saw the most growth between Metellos and Orooturoo.
As the Republic burgeoned, so did its bureaucracy. With the growth of Republic space, new sectors were created and gained representation in the Galactic Senate, increasing the size of the governing body. Existing sectors also grew, in spite of the "Rule of Fifty"—a Republic law designed to limit the number of star systems in a single sector at fifty. As the growth of the Great Manifest Period continued, the rule was largely ignored, and some sectors became so large that they were rendered ungovernable.
The expansion of the Republic, combined with the increase in hyperspace travel and commerce among its member worlds, prompted the creation of the Bureau of Ships and Services (BoSS). The organization, created within the bureaucracy of the Republic, was designed to track movement of ships and goods through space, along with assigning transponder codes and tracking vessel ownership. The BoSS was said to have been created more than 1,000 years prior to the end of the Great Manifest Period, although it had also been remarked that the Bureau was created slightly later.
Prelude to conflict
As the Great Manifest Period unfolded, the differences between Core stalwarts Coruscant and Alsakan reached a pivotal juncture. Cultural and socio-political differences in the Core were being reflected in the Rimward reaches of the Republic. The citizens of Alsakan and daughter colonies neither viewed the Republic as the pinnacle of achievement nor aligned with large mega-corporations. They preferred and retained a more aristocratic philosophy and sought for less bureaucracy and greater local or planetary independence. At the same time, Coruscant and its corporate-political interests sought to attain a foothold as much of the Slice as possible in an effort to amass a stockpile of natural resources. The Slice largely divided into an Alsakani-dominant northern portion, including worlds along the Perlemian Trade Route, and a Coruscant-controlled southern half that became known as the "Exploitation Region."
The corporate conglomerates of Coruscant aggressively pushed further into the Rimward systems and acted against the Alsakani colonial efforts in their exploitation of the new-found worlds. The merchants evicted many of the colonists, who took refuge in Alsakani-aligned worlds along the Perlemian. Alsakan's envy of Coruscanti control, combined with a belief that the Republic was both too strong and centralized, prompted a deeper colonization campaign. Alsakan-led warships accompanied colonial efforts on resource-rich worlds, to which the so-called "Grand Companies" resisted. As a result, armed freighters of Duros merchants skirmished with the Alsakani vessels. The Coruscant-based Republic government backed its corporate interests and open conflict began in 17,018 BBY with the Republic assault and capture of the Alsakan colony Virujansi.
The early years of the Great Manifest Period marked the end of the religion Vianism within the Core Worlds. Vianism was an ancient belief system that originated in the Core Worlds and centered on worship of the goddess Via and her two likeness: the Beatific Countenance and the Glorious Radiance. Even though the religion died out in the Core, it was retained among the ancestors to the Argazdan civilization. These peoples then sent missionaries throughout the worlds of the Kanz sector, where the religion was revived with the conversion of the Lorrdians and Sipsk'ud.
On the Core World Shawken, the massive structure known as the Shawken Spire had reached low-orbit altitudes. Made from ancient building materials since its foundations over 700 years prior, the structure had grown in renown across the known galaxy. In 18,780 BBY, the iconic edifice that predated the Republic met its destruction. Also in the Core Worlds, the competition between Alsakan and Coruscant spilled over into linguistic usage. Alsakan was promoting the usage of the High Galactic language and alphabet, in place of Basic and Aurebesh, which were used on Coruscant.
About the time the Great Manifest Period began, a Human male named Roni von Wasaki was born. He later became a Jedi Knight who helped to maintain peace and stability in frontier sectors of the growing Republic. His strong influence caused many local crime lords to mark him with a bounty. While he fended off many who pursued him, he was eventually captured by Leshy Drobo and XT-8. Wasaki was frozen in carbonite and set aboard the transport Starkiller for travel. While being transported, however, the vessel's hyperdrive failed. Wasaki remained trapped within the carbonite for 20,000 years, until the Starkiller was discovered.
Prior to the year 19,000 BBY, a Jedi named Humat became insane and left the Jedi Order. Upon dropping out of the Order, he fled with his most valuable treasures to Coruscant. There, Humat buried his belongings in a deep underground vault that became known as the Cell of Imu. Within the locale were numerous types of technology that were protected by traps and skeletons that had been animated by use of dark side of the Force magic. The centerpiece of his collection was a talisman known as the soul stealer.
Outside of Republic space
During the early years of the Great Manifest Period, two planets outside of Republic space underwent significant climatic changes. Around 19,997 BBY, in what later became the Tapani sector, the ice caps of the planet Neona began to melt and flood the surface. As the surface became submerged, its native sentient species was driven to extinction. At the time, the worlds of the Tapani sector were unknown to the broader Republic, although they were within the reach of the Herglic Trade Empire.
Similarly, the Wild Space planet of Kamino began a climate shift around 19,000 BBY. There, the surface ice of the planet's glaciers began to melt. The low-lying marsh areas and narrow oceans began to flood, forcing the native Kaminoans from their native homelands. Over time, the land area became completely submerged, and the Kaminoans were forced to live above the rising water levels. As with Neona, the event took place on a world that had yet to have been discovered by the Republic.
- "While the fighting never expanded to a full-scale civil war in the Republic, the first of the Alsakan Conflicts ended the boom of the Great Manifest Period. However, it did not end Alsakan's ambitions, and the Alsakanese would continue to attempt to claim their "rightful" place as galactic capital for another 14,000 years."
- ―Dr. Milanda Vorgan
The expansion and colonization efforts of the Great Manifest Period came to an abrupt end in 17,018 BBY with the outbreak of the First Alsakan Conflict. Approximately six years after fighting began, Alsakan liberated the Virujansi. War continued for more than three hundred years with battles at Kes, Porus Vida, and Belasco. Seventeen conflicts occurred in all, culminating in 3017 BBY. The conflicts caused desolation in the Slice with long-lasting effects. Since the battles were primarily fought among the colonial holdings in what was later termed the Expansion Region, the area of the Slice near the Perlemian Trade Route was left sparsely populated compared to the area of space near the Corellian Run where Corellia had continued its expansion unabated. War effected galactic culture, as well as historical landmarks, such as the Alsakan Mosaics and Belgoth's Beacon, which were destroyed during the battles. The onslaught of war also prompted the Corellians to insert the Contemplanys Hermi clause into the Galactic Constitution, allowing themselves to be recused from open conflict between Coruscant and Alsakan in spite of the sympathies to Alsakani beliefs. This created, at times, three de facto independent states during the periods of conflict. The constitutional clause was invoked on later occasions by Corellia in its attempts for secession.
Not only did war affect the Republic, but the creation of the Bureau of Ships and Services had a permanent effect on transportation and commerce throughout the galaxy. The immense organization grew to have outposts on numerous worlds and kept records of nearly every starship transaction. It also regulated aspects of trade among worlds of the Republic. Because of its size, the BoSS developed its own unique culture and language. It became a nuisance for traders and mercenaries, who often sought ways around BoSS regulations and observers. Even in the years approaching the Galactic Civil War, the Republic, and later the Galactic Empire, avoided confrontation with the extra-planetary organization. The BoSS also controlled the hyperspace beacon system, which was used as leverage by the organization to quell the First Alsakan Conflict in 16,700 BBY.
Even though Vianism died out in its generative worlds of the Core during the early Great Manifest Period, the religion continued in the Kanz sector. Having been brought to these far reaches by the ancestors to the Argazdan peoples, Vianism continued to flourish, and it remained in place even until the Galactic Civil War. Among the branches of Vianism that formed were the Sisterhood of the Glorious Radiance and the Myrialites. The changes in religion helped facilitate the ethnic strife between worlds in the sector, leading ultimately to the Kanz Disorders. Cultural changes continued linguistically, as well. The language Galactic Basic Standard, and its Aurebesh alphabet became the lingua franca of Republic worlds rather than the Alsakanese language; although, High Galactic retained usage among nobility and clergy, and the alphabet survived even until the Galactic Civil War.
Sometime after the collapse of the Shawken Spire, the task was undertaken to rebuild it. The reconstructed edifice, however, was built with more modern materials, contrasting with the materials that had previously graced the structure. The iconic building continued to be remembered through time, as well. In celebration of the Republic's founding, the historian Vicendi was commissioned to complete a list of twenty galactic wonders. The Shawken Spire was included as one of the wonders within his 10,000 BBY publication, Arturum Galactinum.
With their homeworld having underwent dramatic climactic changes that began in the Great Manifest Period, the Kaminoan civilization adapted to the changing surroundings. Eventually, the Kaminoans abandoned their former cities, such as Derem City, as the surface flooded. While architectural wonders like the Clock Spires of Harai Nova became submerged, the Kaminoans adapted their technology to move their cities to stilts above the rising water level. They also turned to genetic engineering to preserve the flora and fauna that drowned in the planetary flooding. Genetics and cloning later became a feature of Kaminoan technology.
Timeline of the Great Manifest Period
- c. 20,000 BBY
- Ancient Jedi Knight Roni von Wasaki was born
- After 20,000 BBY
- Vianism died out in the Core Worlds but spread throughout worlds in the Kanz sector
- c. 19,997 BBY
- Before 19,000 BBY
- An insane Jedi named Humat left the Jedi Order, fleeing with his treasures to Coruscant and burying them deep underground in a vault that became known as the Cell of Imu
- c. 19,000 BBY
- Kamino's glaciers began to melt due to climate change
- 18,780 BBY
- The Shawken Spire, a super-tall structure on Shawken that reached low-orbit altitude, was destroyed
- By 18,000 BBY
- 17,018 BBY
Behind the scenes
The Great Manifest Period first appears in the 2005 publication The New Essential Chronology. It was given subsequent appearances in the sources The Complete Star Wars Encyclopedia and The Essential Atlas. Sources such as Coruscant and the Core Worlds, Death in the Slave Pits of Lorrd, and the Atlas provided background information regarding events within the Great Manifest Period, although only the latter mentions the era by name. The era of the Great Manifest Period is furthered in canon by Lords of the Expanse and Platt's Starport Guide, both of which provide dates for events that fall within the period. Lastly, the publication Challenge 66, which is of ambiguous canonicity, includes events that take place within the early years of the Great Manifest Period. In March 2010, the Great Manifest Period was given a mention in the in-universe article The Written Word by John Hazlett, who used the in-universe persona of Dr. Milanda Vorgan.
The end date of the Great Manifest Period was tied to the Alsakan Conflicts in The New Essential Chronology and The Essential Atlas, which both stated that the historical period ended 17,000 BBY according to galactic historians. The publication of The Essential Guide to Warfare in 2012 cast the starting date of the First Alsakan Crisis as 17,018 BBY. At the same time, however, Warfare does not mention such direct corrolation between the dates as the preceding publications. Dates were drawn from combining the extant sources.
- Star Wars: The Old Republic: Rise of the Hutt Cartel (Mentioned only)
- (Mentioned only)
- The New Essential Chronology (First mentioned)
- Coruscant and the Core Worlds (Indirect mention only)
- Death in the Slave Pits of Lorrd (Indirect mention only)
- The Complete Star Wars Encyclopedia
- The Essential Atlas
- The Essential Guide to Warfare
Notes and references
- The New Essential Chronology
- The Essential Atlas
- The Essential Guide to Warfare
- Star Wars: The Old Republic Encyclopedia places the Treaty of Coruscant, which served as the zero point of a calendar adopted by the Galactic Senate following the conclusion of the Great Galactic War per , in the year 3653 BBY of the Galactic Standard Calendar, which was based around the date of the Battle of Yavin. Thus, the difference between the two dating systems is 3,653 years.
- Shadows of the Empire Sourcebook
- Coruscant and the Core Worlds
- Platt's Starport Guide
- Death in the Slave Pits of Lorrd
- Disturbance in the Force—Challenge 66
- Lords of the Expanse
- The Complete Star Wars Encyclopedia