The Tapani sector was a sector located in the Colonies. It was named after Shey Tapani, who united the sector thousands of years before the Battle of Yavin, though the sector itself had been colonized in 12,720 BBY. Seven provinces made up the Expanse: Barnaba Province, Cadriaan Province, Calipsa Province, Mecetti Province, Melantha Province, Pelagia Province, and Reena Province. Each province was ruled by a noble house. The sector included the Freeworlds Territory region which was not ruled by nobility. In or around 3 ABY the Empire split off the Freeworlds into a new sector called the Shapani sector. Tapani was then converted into an oversector composed of the Tapani and Shapani sectors; although by 40 ABY at the latest, this action was reversed and the sector reunited. The sector capital was Procopia. Notable phenomena included Shindra's Veil. Ophideraan was in or near Tapani sector.
The Giju Run spurred from the Rimma Trade Route and into Tapani sector intersecting the Shapani Bypass. Other routes were the Three Ellas Run, the Procopian Shipping Lane, Cor Lane, Calipsa Run, the Leozi Route and the Caloria Run.
Colonial Era (12,720-11,708 BBY)
(0-1,012 Tapani Calendar)
The first settlers to the Tapani sector came to the planet Pelagon around 13,000 BBY in huge colony ships sent from the Core. Beneath the oceans of Pelagon there were ancient ruins that pre-dated the arrival of the colonists. During this period the sector was at the extreme of Human exploration of the galaxy and the early colonists of Pelagon were quite isolated. These original colonists controlled several other systems that were under Calipsa's control during the Galactic Civil War. Most of these systems were rich in ore but were not as easily settled. Fortunately, the region had an abundance of inhabitable worlds and it did not take long for the settlers to migrate out from Pelagon and prosper.
The colonies were initially governed by the Pella Compact, the council that led the colony ships to Pelagon from the Core. Its leaders established the first alliances with the Herglics and established the first trade routes in the region.
Twelve Kingdoms Era (11,708-7348 BBY)
1,012-5,372 Tapani Calendar
Over the generation the clan worlds grew more independent of the central government on Pelagon and power gradually decentralized to the local clan capitals. Traditional Tapani historians placed this transition quite arbitrarily in the year 11,708 BBY (1,012 Tapani calendar), although others argued that shift to the Twelve Kingdoms Era happened much earlier.
During the early years of this period numerous clans merged, expanded, fought and died out. After eight centuries Twelve stable houses emerged each ruled by a King or Queen. These Twelve kingdoms existed in relative stability for over 3000 years although there were some territorial fluctuations. Towards the end of this era the houses begun to expand their territories to the periphery of the sector in order to provide greater source of raw materials and to establish a buffer zone between the expanding Herglic Trade Empire. The worlds in the area of space that would later be called the Freeworlds Territory were lightly settled including Gilliana, Aleron and Achillea. The house made contact with the natives of Mrlsst and established a training relationship.
Dynastic Era (7328-430BBY)
5,392-11,138 Tapani Calendar
The Twelve Kingdoms era came to an end when a warrior prince named Shey Tapani rose up from House Melantha and unified the houses in a series of bloody civil conflicts known as the Unification War that lasted for nearly twenty years. The climatic battle in this war was the Battle of Shindra's Veil where Tapani's space forces faced and defeated the forces of the Rogue Houses at the Shindra's Veil nebula. The unification of the houses by Tapani was celebrated annually during Capital Season at a popular festivals called the Unification Gala. A total of two houses were destroyed during this conflict and another was absorbed within a century.
Shey Tapani was crowned Emperor of his newly formed dominion in 7328 BBY (5,392 Tapani calendar) and over his long lifetime forged the foundations of a regional empire that lasted for nearly 7,000 years. The rise of the Tapani Empire did little to advance Shey's own House of Melantha since he was surprisingly generous at distributing power even-handedly to the nobles who survived the Unification War. A number of historians have commented that it was this impartiality towards the Houses that gave his empire such a good start.
Shey Tapani's empire made a great mark on the region. He established a number of universities and research facilities and imposed a new code of law and a new calendar. The university system on Mrlsst was codified in 7308 BBY (5,412 Tapani calendar). Shey selected his homeworld of Procopia as the seat of his new empire. The Palace on Estalle Island was the center of regional power throughout the Dynastic Era.
Shey Tapani's descendants consolidated his empire over the following 5,000 years. Sixteen dynasties ruled the Tapani Empire over the centuries, most hailing from one of the great houses of either Melantha, Mecetti, or Pelagia. High Lady Brezwalt III of House Mecetti was a member of one of these dynastic families. Some time before the Great Sith War the Tapani sector joined the Republic, although this may have been to a lesser degree of membership than full senatorial representation, presumably as an Allied Region. It would first send representatives to Coruscant much later, in 1486 BBY. Likewise, this contact led the Jedi Order to discover force-sensitive bloodlines in House Pelagia, although they would only actively recruit from it during the Federal Era.
Around 4200 BBY a group called the Mecrosa Order was formed to prevent outsiders from attacking the House Mecetti. When High Lord Tritum XI married Viscountess Mireya of Vjun the order was corrupted by her Sith teachings and was turned into a Sith cult that fought for Exar Kun during the Great Sith War, one of the largest engagements of the Old Sith Wars (4015 BBY–3951 BBY). The Pelagia Duplex Command Assault Gunship was created during this period to bolster Tapani's defenses in the turbulent time surrounding Exar Kun's violent campaign against the Galactic Republic.
The Tapani sector was involved in further engagements of the Old Sith Wars. Between the Great Hunt events and the Mandalorian Wars a civil war took place in the Tapani sector that pitched the Jedi Order and House Pelagia against the Sith-sponsored Mecrosa Order of assassins, who were supported and sustained by House Mecetti. House Melissus and House Barong were absorbed by House Mecetti during this conflict, which became known as the Cleansing of the Nine Houses. During the Mandalorian Wars in 3963 BBY the Republic Senator Graw called for tariffs against the Tapani sector in response to their high prices.
In the aftermath of the Great Sith War the Giju Run trade route was blazed by Herglic scouts in 4003 BBY (8,717 Tapani calendar) and within 25 years it was an established route of trade into Herglic space. This route was actually forged previously by ancient Herglic traders but was long abandoned. The angular starships of the Herglic traders became a familiar sight in Tapani Space and the bulky aliens brought with them substantial investment capital and a vibrant culture.
With the establishment of stable trade pipeline the Empire experience a new surge of growth and expansion. It was at this time that the planets Neona and Tallaan became major trade worlds along the newly established routes. Over the following centuries Tallaan's modest orbital docks were turned into expensive shipyards.
The Kappela was the final dynasty to rule over the Tapani Empire. The emperors of this dynasty presided over a steady decline into regional factionalism. The final end of the empire came in 1582 BBY (11,138 Tapani calendar) when a cadre of military officers staged a coup and placed the government of the sector into the hands of a group of reformers and the Federal Era began.
Federal Era (430-32 BBY)
11,139-12,688 Tapani Calendar
The reformers that came from nearly all the noble houses formed a federation of the planets from the fallen empire. The new federal government was ruled by a Prime Minister elected by a parliament on Procopia. This system of government was more decentralized than the Imperial structure and gave more power to the individual house leaderships.
The position of Prime Minister of the Tapani Federation was later elected by a Great Council. During the 15 centuries of the Federal Era, the balance of power shifted from one house to another as leaders formed Great Council coalitions that elected them to power. Most of these leaders came from Pelagia or Mecetti but from time to time even the lesser houses took charge when an effective leader rose from their ranks. Several houses rose and fell during this period in Tapani history and two left the sector entirely in search of greater opportunities.
The Federal Era was also a time of change in the, at the time, backwater worlds near the Herglic border. These periphery worlds settled in the Dynastic Era were initially considered a new source of new raw materials for the high-consumption worlds of the sector. When Republic scouts opened up a new trade route circa 2203 BBY which reduced several days off the established Rimma hyperlane, however, these worlds enjoyed a huge and unanticipated surge in growth. This new route resulted in a pouring of credit and influence into the coffers of the periphery worlds that it ran through, as well as the systems along several spacelanes leading to the Shapani Bypass, leading the Great Houses to squabble over rights to the worlds. This area of space would be known as the Freeworlds Territory, as it was decided that no individual house would lay claim to any of the worlds, much like they had done with Procopia. Yet as time passed the Freeworlds began to become more and more self-sufficient and ambitious, and eventually they nationalized House interests, promptly selling them to private investors, and became fully independent of Expanse rule. A League of the five most powerful worlds was established to collude in setting tariffs, coordinating a common defense strategy, and other top level arrangements.
Finally, during the Federal Era the Tapani sector joined the Galactic Republic. In 1486 BBY (11,234 Tapani calendar) Procopia sent its first representatives to the Senate and was officially designated a sector of the Republic. Several members of House Pelagia were recruited by the Jedi Order and a bloodline strong in the Force was established. Members of the nobility frequently traveled to the Core to do business and ambassadors forged alliances and links with important Core worlds such as Alderaan and Corellia. There were many Tapani expatriates that lived on Core worlds such as Coruscant and members of the Galactic Senate enjoyed a good degree of influence and authority in galactic affairs. Although the Great Council sent representation to Coruscant the nobility generally viewed the Republic as a business necessity and looked down on the rest of civilization.
Imperial Period (31 BBY-4 ABY)
12,689-12,724 Tapani Calendar
Before the Clone Wars, the Tapani sector was represented in the Galactic Senate by Senator Rodd of Fondor until he joined the Confederacy of Independent Systems in 23 BBY and was replaced by the Mrlssi Canny Mandary Bertar who represented the sector up until the Dissolution of the Imperial Senate in 0 BBY. The rise of the New Order changed the nature of Tapani politics. The Old Republic tended not to significantly intervene in the affairs of the Tapani Federation beyond a few wars and conflicts. When the Empire was established there was, for the first time in the sector's history, a greater external power both capable and willing to interfere in internal Tapani affairs
During the early years of Galactic Imperial rule the Emperor was slow to bring the outlying sectors under his direct control as he concentrated on consolidating a powerbase in the inner systems of the dissolved Republic. Other systems spent the early years pretending that they could maintain independence but the leaders of the Tapani sector acknowledged that eventually Palpatine would turn his attention to the remaining independent systems and, on some convenient pretext, send an Imperial fleet in to take control. The leaders of the sector therefore set out to curry favor with the New Order. The senatorial representatives declared their allegiance to the Emperor and Tapani brokered several trade deals advantageous to the Empire. The large number of officers in the Republic Navy were loyal to the Empire and many were entrusted with important commands while less malleable officers were pushed aside or disappeared altogether. Octavian Grant was an Imperial Grand Admiral who came from the Tapani sector, while the Mecetti noble Brigta Hejaran received tutoring by Emperor Palpatine's Dark Side Adepts.
Of the seven houses during this period, Mecetti and Melantha were the most enthusiastic supporters of the New Order. House Melantha fared particularly well under the new regime and several key nobles entered the Emperor's inner circle and undertook to protect Tapani. High Lord Bal Jaset of House Melantha served as an Imperial Advisor in Palpatine's Empire. House Pelagia supported the Emperor early efforts to rebuild the Republic after the destruction of the Clone Wars but gradually became less supportive when Palpatine's true intentions were revealed.
House Mecetti tried to catch up with Melantha's influence by helping the Empire with the great Jedi purge. The Inquisitors were brought into Tapani and Mecetti used its spynet resources to help root out the Jedi members of Pelagia.
Following the Great Jedi Purge, the Empire installed a planetary governor, which further created fear that they would soon take over the sector. House Mecetti used this fear to form a new coalition within the Great Council with a mandate to root out all anti-Imperial sentiment in Tapani. This Mecetti-Calipsa-Reena coalition led to another purge that rid the sector of more of Mecetti's enemies than Imperial. Mecetti moved against their long term enemy and Pelagia was left impotent. Several worlds were taken from House Pelagia and ceded to House Calipsa.
Following the disbandment of the Senate, most worlds passed directly into the control of the Empire. The Tapani sector managed to escape this immediate fate and managed to maintain a reasonable degree of freedom. The Tapani nobles therefore had a relatively free hand in governing their domain, compared to other Imperial sectors. In many other areas the Empire ruled directly through its appointed officials and military leaders, but in the Tapani Sector the local government had a lot more power and then Imperial officials served as ambassadors rather than sector rulers.
Palpatine established a system to ensure the loyalty of the Tapani houses. Biannually the extended family of the rulers of the Tapani houses were invited to Coruscant to join the Imperial Court for a year, while the High Lord or Lady stayed in the sector. The rolling rotation ensured each cluster of the allied houses had at least one major family living in the Imperial City at any given time. Though the families were essentially held hostage, the constant presence allowed the Tapani nobles to greatly increase their standing in the Core community.
The Pelagian Jedi Knight Taj Junak survived the Jedi Purge and hid from the Empire in the Freeworlds Territory. He adopted the alias of Professor Shellery Kint and taught at the Academy on Mrlsst. When the Empire moved into the Tapani sector, Taj sacrificed himself to save the Academy and was burnt on the spot. No grass grew on the location of his demise and it was said that this was to warn people of the dangers of politics.
Some time in or after 3 ABY, the Galactic Empire invaded and occupied the Freeworlds, and cut it off from the Tapani sector, intending to form a new one. The Shapani sector was thus created, and the Empire assigned a new Moff to oversee the new Tapani oversector.
New Republic era (4-27 ABY)
12,724-12,747 Tapani Calendar
During the New Republic era Kvarm Jia represented the Tapani sector in 27 ABY before the end of the New Republic and its rebirth as the Galactic Alliance. Senator Jia sat on the New Republic Military Oversight Committee and was responsible for convening the Corruption Panel that investigated Viqi Shesh prior to the Appeasement Vote.
Galactic Alliance Era (28-130 ABY)
12,748-12,850 Tapani Calendar
Eventually, by the Galactic Alliance era the separation of the Expanse Tapani sector and the Freeworlds Shapani sector was reversed, and by 40 ABY the Freeworlds were once again a part of the Tapani sector. The region's inhabitants still remained fiercely independent and some worlds, such as Tallaan, began supplying ships to the Confederation, while Fondor itself actually seceded from the GFFA.
The population of the Expanse is divided into two socio-economic classes: the nobility and the common people. There were approximately 345 noble families that were in existence in one form or another since the Dynastic Era. Some changed associations as houses fell and others rose through the centuries.
New noble families were generally not admitted into a house. The registry of noble families had remained static since the days of the Dynastic era. There were two exceptions to this rule. When a house died out or was absorbed the families from that house could petition for admittance into the other house. Several Pelagian families were absorbed into House Cadriaan and Calipsa during the aftermath of the Mecetti Purge. The second exception was in reference to House Cadriaan during the Imperial era, when they offered hereditary titles and membership to wealthy commoners in exchange for a sizable financial contribution. Some were even granted the rank of Baron and Lord.
While in most of the Old Republic the idea of universal suffrage and equality existed the philosophy in the Tapani Sector continued over the millennia that the right to rule belonged to the well-born. Both nobles and commons subscribe to this point of view. This may explain how the Tapani citizens adapted so well to the emergence of the Empire and why the Rebel Alliance had trouble fanning the flames of dissent in the sector.
The Tapani nobility considered it subversive to seek power and influence through gaining popularity among the commoners or by serving the selfish needs of the least educated and less informed members of the nobility. Although there were a number of charismatic leaders in the Tapani Sector over the centuries very few have attempted to lead a public uprising against the established noble class and the few that did take place were unsuccessful. Those who attempted to harness populist issues are shunned by all social classes.
Although nobles were equal to commoners in law the well-born enjoyed honors and privileges rarely extended to others on a less formal and official level. Even the lower ranked knight expected a certain degree of respect from the common citizen although the real favor was reserved for the barons and lords of the nobility.
The noble elite were accustomed to special treatment wherever they traveled in the Tapani sector. They did not typically have to wait in line except behind higher-ranked nobles. They did not generally need to make reservations at exclusive restaurants, stadiums and concert halls since the proprietors would remove commoners from reservations lists in favor of noble customers. Nobles were also invited to evaluate complementary new products in the hope that they would receive their endorsement. This practice was frowned upon by some in noble society as an affront to their dignity but many younger nobles often jump at the chance to get their hands on the latest toys for free.
The privileges of celebrity inevitably had consequences. More prominent nobles get little privacy when traveling. There were special sections in the newsnet media that focused on following the daily lives of popular nobles waiting for something newsworthy to report. This treatment was less of a problem for lesser nobles who lived in relative obscurity. The media was not typically interested in house knights unless they had distinguished themselves, such as being great warriors.
Young nobles did little besides attending school and spending the allowance granted by their families. During this time they formed contacts and networks that would make them effective rulers later in life, most of this networking was done at parties, balls, sports events and social clubs. When nobles turned 30 they were considered to be of majority age and were allowed to vote, participate in sector affairs, inherit from their elders and marry. Early marriages were fairly common however, but required special permission from the high lord.
Nobles could choose between a number of acceptable career paths such as the military, the arts and the sciences or government service. Nobles were expected to climb to the highest levels of their profession, being a gene-splicing specialist was acceptable while being a family doctor or basic education teacher was not. Many nobles inherited their jobs from their parents, such as running a spynet or an agricultural enterprise. Common careers, especially those involving physical labor, were considered to be beneath a noble. Choosing a career such as a freighter captain or a common laborer would make one the black sheep of the family, but knights had a bit more flexibility then the other nobles in this area.
- House Barnaba
- House Barong
- House Cadriaan
- House Calipsa
- House Mecetti
- House Melantha
- House Melissus
- House Pelagia
- House Reena
Title and Rank
There were three levels of aristocratic rank within Tapani society: Knight (Sir/Dame), Baron/Baroness and Lord/Lady. All members of the nobility were addressed either by name or rank. The wife of a knight, baron and lord was addressed as Dame, Baroness and Lady respectively. In general a noble of lesser rank was required to observe the etiquette when addressing a higher ranked noble. A noble of higher rank could chose to observe the forms of address although they might elect to ignore them by whim or to put an inferior in their place.
Knights were the lowest rank of Tapani nobility. They typically owned property and work in the House hierarchy but rarely held significant house assets. Many knights were relatively poor and had to send their sons and daughters out to make their own fortune. For a noble-born knight the title was hereditary and they could elevate their position by gaining a high-ranking sponsor on the Privy council who bestowed a baronhood. A high-born knight might also better their station by performing some great service to the house that gains the attention of a prominent noble.
It was possible for commoners to attain the rank of Knight by an act of the house Privy council. These so-called "petty knights" could hold house assets and marry high-born nobles but their title was not hereditary. Knights were addressed as 'Sir' and their wives as 'Dame'.
Barons were a higher noble class than knights and typically hailed from the house's better families with long and honored histories. They frequently held significant house assets such as military armories, spy networks, manufacturing plants, sea fisheries and agricultural combines. A baron or baroness usually had a manor on their land and a small property on Procopia.
The title is hereditary and no commoner could be raised to baronhood, even a petty knight. The children of petty knights, however, become a baron if they themselves were raised to nobility.
The Lords and Ladies of the Tapani expanse were the highest rank of nobility. They hailed from the most powerful house families and held the majority of house assets. They were appointed to run significant house activities such as the command of military assets, running prominent house businesses and the making key economic decisions. All lords had opulent palaces on at least one of the house worlds and often a palace on Procopia. There were no financially poor lords. The most powerful of the house Lords were termed High Lords and they would lead the house Privy Council.
Noble code of conduct
The nobles of the Tapani sector adhere to a code of conduct that sought to hold them to higher standards than common citizens. While individual houses had their own interpretation on how their nobles should conduct themselves in public, all agreed on certain common aspects that made up the informal but important code of conduct for nobles.
While lying was considered acceptable and even essential in some circumstances, a noble was expected to never break their word overtly. To do so was said to be equivalent to spitting on one's high lord and brought dishonor and disgrace to the individual noble, their family and house. The punishments for nobles that were caught breaking their word, either privately or publicly, were significant. At a minimum, they were shunned by the nobles of every house, and they were often banished from Tapani for several years. Consequently, a noble's word was not given lightly. Young nobles were occasionally allowed back into society after some time, but for most nobles there were no second chances. Once caught breaking their word, a noble is forever tarnished.
Stealing and cheating were other severe offenses against the noble code and were considered more serious crimes than murder. Although murder was frowned upon in noble society it was accepted as a viable method of dealing with intractable issues. Although murder was illegal in the Tapani and Imperial courts, nobles tended to cooperate in concealing their own messes and therefore cases tended not to reach court. The exceptions to this tendency were patricide and fratricide: extremely serious infractions against the noble social order. There were obviously scoundrels among the ranks of the noble classes but they were careful to hide their dark deeds from society.
Since there were serious consequences of a noble being found lacking in honor, questioning their word was dangerous. Traditionally there were two options for a noble whose honor had been challenged: kill them if they were a commoner or challenge them to a duel if they were a member of the nobility. During the centuries prior to the Imperial Era, the situation had become more civilized and a commoner would no longer be slain on the spot.
Dueling was outlawed by the Empire but still took place behind the scenes in secret. Duels were typically conducted with blasters set to either stun or kill depending on the seriousness of the offense and the level of house involvement. Each duelist would select a second and agree a suitably isolated place and a time for the confrontation. The house leaderships were aware of the continuation of the tradition of dueling but they officially pretended that they were not and would only investigate if the duelists became too obvious to ignore. Fortunately the practice of dueling was rare enough that the Imperial law enforcement agencies did not feel obligated to intervene.
Commoners and Aliens of the Expanse
The common citizens of the Expanse were generally supportive of the noble rule. There were several occasions in the history of the sector when segments of society attempted to remove noble rule but civil unrest was very rare. Popular revolts were prevented by guards integrated into the fabric of Tapani society from above and below.
From above the councils and magistrates give the noble population sufficient means to channel their personal ambitions. There was never an occasion where a vengeful noble, denied some honor or distinction, rallied the masses to overthrow the system. From below the system allowed the common citizen to take part in the governance of the sector through their system of guilds, juries, boards, and local community governments. While the nobility rule the planets of the expanse the majority of the day-to-day decisions are made by civil servants who are mostly commoners or occasionally knights.
The numerous civil festivals such as Tapani Day and Expansion Week were times for communal celebration that helped to unify the classes of the Expanse. These holidays were sponsored by the noble governments and they were heavy on pageantry and grand displays of house strength as well as lavish public feasts. These activities tended to generate goodwill to the sponsoring noble houses and therefore for the entire system of government.
While the nobles of the sector prided themselves on doing everything on a higher level than the commoners (while commoners might race swoops, nobles raced yachts), commoners loved to read about their lords and ladies living it up.
Common citizens typically did not get involved in house feuds. Few commoners had the resources to protect themselves or their families from powerful noble Lords made enemies by getting involved in inter-house politics. There was alway opportunities, however, for ambitious commoner to enter the service of there respective houses if they were willing to confront the consequences of doing so. It was difficult for Tapani outsiders to enter the service of the noble house but it was not impossible. Alek Ben-Faris from the Core world of Brentaal was one of House Pelagia's greatest diplomats during the Clone Wars.
The culture of the common citizens within the sector were influenced by the individual character and traditions of the noble houses. Citizens of the Mecetti capital, Obulette, tended to be more insular and distrustful of outsiders than those of Achillea, the capital of Cadriaan.
Aliens were long established in the Tapani sector although they were more commonly seen in the spacelanes of the Freeworlds Territory. The expanse had a sizable alien population that mainly consisted of Mrlssi and Herglics although Sullustans and Givins also made up a significant proportion of the transient alien class.
Historically, the Human businesses in the Expanse gave the most lucrative opportunities to fellow Humans. This was not because the population of the expanse was particularly anti-alien but rather because most affairs were dominated by noble house of all Human members. Even so, up until the rise of the Empire, aliens were welcomed as employees of companies in the Expanse. The Imperial anti-alien attitude translated into the society of the sector. While violence to aliens in the Expanse was rare, there was a feeling during this period that aliens should not be in prominent positions, even in the private sector. The role of aliens was steadily downgraded so that there were less corporate executives, community leaders and engineers but more laborers, traders, entertainers and those of other politically neutral occupations. The attitude to aliens within the house militaries was not affected.
The first settlers of the Tapani sector were governed from Pelagon by a council called the Pella Compact. When the colonies migrated from Pelagon clans formed and power gradually devolved and to local capitals. Eventually twelve houses emerged that were ruled by a Monarch. When Shey Tapani united the houses he and his decedents ruled the sector as Emperors and established the seat of power on Procopia.
The Tapani Empire fell in 1582 BBY and a Federation was established that gave the individual houses more autonomy in the governance of their own affairs. The federation was lead by a Prime Minister who was initially elected by a Parliament. Each house province was governed by an appointed High Lord/Lady and a selection of the highest ranking nobles that formed the Privy Council. Individual settlements within each province were governed by community leaders mostly from the common ranks. In the day-to-day affairs, the nobles tended to defer control to the local common government officials, reserving their energies for establishing overall house directives and sector politics. Each world in the sector had its own law enforcement, while the House Guards enforce the will of the nobles. The Expanse was governed by the nobles of the sector through the Great Council on Procopia.
The Tapani federation's primary legislative body was the Great Council (or Grand Council) and its associated sub-councils. The Great Council comprised over 2,000 members from the noble families of the Expanse, each of which were associated with one of the noble houses. The houses gained power and influence by forming coalitions within the Great Council in order to obtain enough votes to carry their policies. For approximately twenty years prior to the Battle of Yavin, the House Mecetti-controlled coalition (Mecetti-Reena-Calipsa coalition) held the power within the council. The proportion of votes each house had within the Great Council was based on the total population within each province and not the number of worlds or systems. The Great Council was led by a Prime Minister elected by majority vote within the chamber. It was the prerogative of the council to call for new Prime ministerial elections at any time but by tradition this was only done every five years.
The Great Council had a number of executive and judicial responsibilities as well as its role as the primary legislative body of the Expanse. Therefore, in addition to passing laws, the council would sit in judgments over some court cases, confer offices and grant pardons. In reality the council was too large to effectively attend to all of its duties and therefore it was mainly concerned with electing officials and reviewing the decisions of the many smaller councils and committees under its control.
The Senate was the largest and most powerful of the "lesser" councils and was mandated to deliberate on such matters as tariffs, armaments, negotiations, taxes and laws. It was made up of 80 senior Great Council members and a number of appointed military officers and ambassadors. The Prime Minister also presided over the Senate.
Council of Ten
The Council of Ten was an inner circle of senior Great Council members that the Prime Minister could call on to bypass the Senate on crucial issues such as interal security, finance and foreign policy. Despite its name, the council actually consisted of thirty-five members.
The Court System
Although the nobles were a step above the commoners in terms of the right to rule, both social classes were officially considered equal in law. The commoners of the Tapani sector were generally confident that their society was just and they were less likely to feel slighted if the law ruled against them in favor of a noble.
Most crimes committed within the Tapani Sector by nobles were covered up by their peers and the courts although the offenders were typically sent into exile. The exception to the arrangement was murder, particularly if the victim was of noble birth, when the killers were swiftly and publically executed.
The judges and magistrates of the Tapani court system were appointed to the bench by the nobles of the Great Council. The concept of equality in the law was diluted by this fact and because the noble classes could typically afford better lawyers to represent them. The ideal and perception of impartiality was firmly entrenched in Tapani society and overt abuses were rare.
During the Imperial era, the Tapani courts felt the stress of the external influences of the Empire. An increasing number of pro-Imperial judges ascended to the bench. Consequently, there was a trend for Imperial favoritism in court and a decrease in upholding the rights of aliens.
During the Imperial era the Freeworlds Territory consisted of a border region of the Tapani sector that was transected by two major trade route: the Shapani Bypass and the Giju Passage. Before the establishment of the Shapani Bypass this region was considered the backwater of the Tapani sector and there wasn't much reason to settle the worlds. It was a region rich in raw material resources and a convient place to exile house members and factions who were out of favor by the establishment.
For a long time the only settlements on these planets were those connected with House sponsored mining concerns. The majority of periphery worlds had a large amount of ore deposits. Without major trade routes it was not cost-effective to process and transport ore out of the sector so the only market for Freeworlds ore were the noble house of the expanse, that demanded below-market prices. With the establishment of the Giju Passage, around 4,003 BBY (8,717 Tapani calendar), the worlds of Tallaan and Neona were opened up to Galactic trade although the other colonies were held in the backwaters for another 18 centeries until Sullustan scouts opened up the Shapani Bypass. The bypass cut days off the heavily traveled Rimma Trade Route that ran from the Core to the Outer Rim Terrirories and it soon became a favored route for traders keen to shorten the trips along the Rimma hyperlanes, especially the transporters of Bacta from Thyferra to the Core. The Shapani Bypass brought the colony worlds into a major Galactic trade stream as the Giju Passage had done for Tallaan and Neona centuries before.
The houses of the Expanse are quite active in the Freeworlds, maintaining embassies, trade lobbies and businesses on all of its planets. The Freeworlds have a great source of leverage in that they control every major trade route into the sector except one, and can raise tariffs anytime they like. The tariff issue is a continuing point of hot contention between the two parties, and during the Rebellion era there was alarm over the increasingly friendly relationship between House Cadriaan and the League, should they unite they would have a lock on the sector's trade routes.
The Tapani sector was located in the Colonies region on the Shapani Bypass, an offshoot of the Rimma Trade Route. Since the Dynastic Era, the sector capital was Procopia although during the Imperial Era the world of Tallaan was equally important because the main Imperial regional depot was located there. Although the Tapani sector was in the Colonies it was, by tradition, considered part of the Core worlds community.
There were approximately seventy star systems in the sector and roughly a fifth were inhabitable worlds that were heavily settled. There were also small settlements in other systems, including research stations, mining facilities and military outposts.
Tapani had an abundance of temperate worlds and a plethora of raw materials for mining, some of which were relatively rare in the rest of the galaxy. For thousands of years, the sector shipped trillions of tons annually to the Core. It was the closest source of raw materials to the Core and this gave it a competitive edge with more distant sectors that had to raise their prices to cover higher transportation costs.
From a galactic geographic perspective, the Tapani sector lies just off the Rimma Trade Route (or Rimma run). This major trade route ranged from the Core all the way to the distant Kathol sector. Centuries before the rise of the Empire, Republic scouts blazed a large short-cut that ran through the Tapani sector and cut several days off the Rimma run. This trade route was called the Shapani Bypass and brought the sector into a major trade route, which reinvigorated the sector's economy and cultural development. The route was also called the Bacta Run or Bacta Bypass since it was established to transport Bacta from Thyferra to the Core.
Following the Federal Era, there were two distinct parts to the Tapani sector: the Expanse and the Freeworlds Territory. The Expanse was an ore-rich region of space under the control of the noble houses. During the Imperial Era it consisted of seven provinces that made up the house holdings. Procopia was an independent world that was governed by a ruling coalition in the Great Council.
The Freeworlds Territory was a series of systems on the border of the sector. It was once a backward fringe area but became more powerful because of its position on two major trade routes: the Shapani Bypass and the Giju Run. Because most of the ore from the Expanse had to pass through the Freeworlds Territory, a tariff was placed on the shipping. This caused several tensions between the noble house of the Expanse and the Freeworlds.
The Tapani sector was a fairly young segment of space, filled with nebulae, gas clouds and coalescing systems, which made the sector difficult to navigate through. In many other sectors a dense network of hyperlanes linked every world, but the Tapani sector had only a few drifting space lanes linking its various parts. This was because most of the hyperlanes were unstable. During the Imperial era, the sector was so cluttered with galactic debris that just about every system had to be monitored by a hyperspace buoy and the only truly stable route through the sector was the Shapani Bypass, which could be traveled safely without dropping out of hyperspace.
The Tapani Sector was vastly wealthy and a had a large population of highly educated workers, and its research facilities ranked amongst the most productive in the galaxy. Though not located in the Core, the sector was considered part of the Core community.
The Tapani sector systems were rich in common and rare ores and as a consequence there were several hundred mining operations in the sector during the Imperial era. These included a small number of large corporations, a few dozen major cartels and cooperatives and several hundred smaller operations, the majority of which were members of the Mining Guild. The Tapani sector was one of the closest major sources of raw materials to the Core, which gave it an edge when competing with sectors further out which had to raise their prices to cover higher transportation sector. By the Imperial era, Tapani mining companies had been shipping trillions of tons of valuable ores to the Core annually for several thousand years.
During the Imperial era mining was highly politicized since ore from the Expanse, which had the largest of the sectors ore reserves, had to pass through the Freeworld territories where it was subject to high tariffs that increased the price above the competitive market price. The alternative to transportation of goods through the Freeworlds was through Pelagian and Cadriaan territory via the Shapani Run and Shapani Bypass. This, however, was not a very direct route for any companies not based in neighboring Calipsa province and therefore was equivalently expensive. Since Pelagia and Cadriaan were political rival to Calipsa, companies based in its territory were forced to pay tariffs higher than the Freeworlds to use the space lanes through there provinces.
Consequently, there was a high degree of friction between mining companies in the Expanse and those in the Freeworlds who were able to get their goods to the Shapani Bypass and onto the Galactic market for far less expense and hassle. The governments of the Expanse and Freeworlds as well as the mining guild got involved but desire numerous talks, walk-outs, strikes, sabotage and agreements the situation did not change. When agreements were made incidents would arise that gave the Freeworlds and their client mining companies the pretext to increase their tariffs back up to previous levels or on occasion to shut down the trade routes to Expanse ore shipping that cause huge economic turmoil.
The Expanse mining companies naturally did not like this arrangement and continually plotted to get around the situation while the Freeworlds mining companies did all they could to maintain the status quo. They sponsored scouting expeditions to locate new hyper-routes and a few within the mining community plotted with Imperial firebrand to compel the Empire to invade the Freeworlds and the tariffs abolished. Although the mining guild would readily come to the aid of members being repressed by governments they were uneasy about intervening directly in a situation that was largely an inter-Guild feud. The Guild did send arbitrators to assist at the periodic talks between the side and investigated situations where companies suffered suspicious losses, accidents and sabotage.
Expanse mining companies
The majority of the mining companies in the Tapani sector were located within the Expanse region ruled by the noble houses. Theoretically most of these companies fell under the authority of the noble houses but in reality they were given the freedom to operate as they saw fit within the boundaries of the law. Many of the Mining company executives had patronage from powerful noble lords and many nobles sat on the board of directors. The relationship between noble house and mining company was therefore a symbiotic one, each side knowing that it needs the other to flourish. This tended to curb excesses on each side. Two of the most notable mining companies in the expanse were Merrick and Kalb Industries based in Reena Province and the Gantor Mining Company that had mining facilities in Calipsa, Pelagia and Cadriaan.
Freeworlds mining companies
There were several major mining companies based in the Freeworlds Territory as well as some smaller concerns. Two of the major companies in the freeworlds were Hanson Mining Consolidated, that owns the planet Neona and mining rights in several neighboring systems, and Macander Heavy Ores that dominates the economy of Aleron. These companies had sympathetic representatives in the League of Tapani Freeworlds.
The large companies of the Tapani sector had a certain degree of influence on the political and economic policies in the region. Although the mining companies affiliated with the Mining Guild were the most powerful of these there were other companies, high tech manufacturers and shipping firms for example, that also had enough power to influence sector affairs.
The Tapani Sector's Year
- By the Tapani sector's domestic calendar, which was Galactic Standard with local names, the year flowed as follows:
- Month 1: Elona
- Month 2: Kelona
- Holiday 1: Tapani Day
- Month 3: Selona
- Festival Week 1: Expansion Week
- Month 4: Telona
- Month 5: Nelona
- Holiday 2: Productivity Day
- Month 6: Helona
- Festival Week 2: Shelova Week
- Month 7: Melona
- Month 8: Yelona
- Holiday 3: Harvest Day
- Month 9: Relona (The Freeworlds Territory of the Tapani sector also recognized Relona 10 - 15 as Independence Week.)
- Month 10: Welona
- Festival Week 3: Winter Fete
- Lost Tribe of the Sith: Precipice (Mentioned only)
- Lost Tribe of the Sith: Paragon (Indirect mention only)
- Lost Tribe of the Sith: Secrets (Mentioned only)
- Star Wars: The Old Republic
- Lost Tribe of the Sith—Spiral 1 (Mentioned only)
- Galactic Republic Defense Ministry Daily Brief KD0092–Knights of the Old Republic 24 (Mentioned only)
- Knights of the Old Republic 31 (Mentioned only)
- Coruscani Dawn (Mentioned only)
- Star Wars Adventures 1: Hunt the Sun Runner
- Memories (Mentioned only)
- Star Wars Galaxies: An Empire Divided (Mentioned only)
- Star Wars: X-Wing Rogue Squadron: The Phantom Affair
- The New Jedi Order: Agents of Chaos II: Jedi Eclipse
- The New Jedi Order: Star by Star (Mentioned only)
- Legacy of the Force: Revelation
- Fate of the Jedi: Abyss (Mentioned only)
- Fate of the Jedi: Abyss audiobook (Mentioned only)
- Legacy (2013) 14 (Mentioned only)
Notes and references
- Rebellion Era Campaign Guide, p. 92
- Lords of the Expanse
- Player's Guide to Tapani
- Tapani Sector Instant Adventures
- Knights of the Old Republic Campaign Guide
- Star Wars: Knights of the Old Republic Handbook
- Galactic Republic Defense Ministry Daily Brief KD0092
- Galaxy of Intrigue
- Star Wars Adventures 1: Hunt the Sun Runner
- Cloak of Deception
- Coruscant and the Core Worlds
- "Who's Who: Imperial Grand Admirals" – Star Wars Insider 66
- Star Wars: X-Wing Rogue Squadron: The Phantom Affair
- Star Wars Adventure Journal 11
- The New Jedi Order: Recovery
- The New Jedi Order: Star by Star
- Special Ops: The Sector Ranger"—Star Wars Gamer 8 "