For the Karemma homeworld, please see Karemma (planet).

The Karemma were a humanoid civilization native to the Gamma Quadrant planet Karemma and were members of the Dominion.

"CAR-em-ma" was the pronunciation for the name of this species from the script pronunciation guide for "Starship Down". [1]


Physically, Karemma were tall and slender with black or dark brown hair that was combed back. They had a head ridge, like Klingons, but smoother and without edges. The head ridge went down and over the nose. The ridge could be slightly seen to the chin of a Karemma. As a result of this ridge, their noses looked very large, and were quite large in the lower end. It was very broad and one line in the skin on each side of their noses pointed downwards to the outer sides of their face. Karemma had normal eyes that were gray, black, or brown. Overall, this gave them a somewhat rodent-like appearance.

The Karemma make-up was influenced by the fact that one of them was to be played by Star Trek veteran actor James Cromwell. "Again, it was a matter of designing a new face for him, taking and pushing his cheeks around, his forehead around, and his nose around," explained Make-Up Supervisor Michael Westmore. "So, we designed a very special look that was made just for him." ("Michael Westmore's Aliens", DS9 Season 4 DVD special features)
In the script for "Starship Down", the Karemma were described as mostly "tall" and "thin." [2] This, of course, clearly implies that not all Karemma had those qualities.
James Cromwell gave some idea of the processes involved in the Karemma makeup; "They pull your hair up in tight little things which they stick pins in, and then they put a cap over you, and they put on this humongous wig which they attach with pins through the curls. Then they lay all this rubber over your face." (Star Trek: Deep Space Nine - The Official Poster Magazine, No. 7) He concluded, "The makeup was pretty dominating." (Star Trek: Deep Space Nine Companion, p. 284)


Little is known of the culture of the Karemma, but they were apparently a mercantile, trade-oriented race. They loosely seem to have been the Gamma Quadrant analogue of the Ferengi, though in service to the Dominion. Just as the Vorta functioned within the Dominion hierarchy as administrators and bureaucrats, and the Jem'Hadar functioned as shock troops, the Karemma seem to have handled basic trade affairs within Dominion space. Unlike Ferengi, however, Karemma believed in fair dealing and cautious business practices, and regarded cheating or gambling to be taboo.

The teleplay of "Starship Down" referred to most Karemma as being "elegant in bearing." The script proceeded by commenting, "Although the Karemma are mercantilist by nature, they're classy about it: think fine gem appraiser, not used car salesman." [3]


The first relations between the Karemma and the Alpha Quadrant were established in 2370, by the Ferengi. As the Dosi were not able to meet Grand Nagus Zek's request for 100,000 vats of tulaberry wine, they referred his chief negotiator to the Karemma, allegedly being a "more important member" of something called the "Dominion". (DS9: "Rules of Acquisition")

In 2371, Federation representatives aboard the USS Defiant came together with First Minister Ornithar of the Karemma in an attempt to contact the Founders of the Dominion. The meeting was arranged by Quark, who had previously negotiated the tulaberry wine trade. Ornithar admitted that the only contact the Karemma had with the Founders was through their representatives, the Vorta. He did direct the Defiant crew to Callinon VII, where they had been instructed to send all inquiries. (DS9: "The Search, Part I")

Later that year, a Karemma was aboard Deep Space 9. He, at one point, strolled along the upper level of the Promenade. (DS9: "Prophet Motive")

In the following year, the Karemma began conducting trade with the Federation, exporting goods such as Karemman fleece. The Ferengi acted as neutral intermediaries, although they unfairly gouged the Karemma with fabricated taxes and tariffs. A Karemma starship commanded by Hanok met with the Defiant to discuss their complaints about the trade duties. During the meeting, the ships were intercepted by two Jem'Hadar attack ships. All four ships entered the atmosphere of a gas giant, where the Defiant was able to destroy the Jem'Hadar ships and rescue the crew of the Karemma ship. The Karemma manufactured and provided at least one type of torpedo carried on board the Jem'Hadar attack vessels. (DS9: "Starship Down")

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