The Goa'uld System Lords

The Goa'uld System Lords

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A group of the most powerful Goa'uld within the loosely-governed Goa'uld Empire.

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07/05/24

The Goa'uld System Lords are a hierarchy of the most powerful Goa'uld, each controlling and operating from their own region of space. As the Goa'uld have a feudal society, these areas are constantly in dispute. Various System Lords are almost constantly in conflict with one another; if one Goa'uld is forced to abandon a planet, another will often take his or her place.

System Lord itself is a title of nobility among the Goa'uld, given to those within the Goa'uld Empire who held the largest amounts of power, authority, and territory within the empire. The System Lords form the highest level of authority within Goa'uld society, with lesser Goa'uld, Jaffa, and humanoid slaves in their service. They meet together on rare occasions to discuss their mutual interests and enemies.

Characteristics

Usually the System Lords assume the persona of a god and rule many worlds by force through their armies of Jaffa warriors, and with a few Goa'uld, notably Ra, utilizing additional humanoid warriors. The Goa'uld's main weakness has historically been their feudal nature. Although they will reluctantly unite to defend against outside threats, they spend much of their time, efforts, and resources battling among themselves for supreme domination. The greatest danger has been the threat of a single Goa'uld rising to dominant power and taking over the System Lord collective.

Membership among the System Lords has changed greatly throughout the millennia. Membership is decided by the High Council of System Lords, a rare gathering of their membership. They rarely trust each other, and very frequently battle amongst themselves, only holding council with regards to a mutual external or internal threat. Though they constantly warred amongst themselves for power, they did work together when it suited them.

History

 

 

"I will not rest until all Goa'uld are dead."
-Teal'c

 

 

Little is known about the early history of the Goa'uld Empire beyond the mythos the System Lords themselves impose upon their thralls. According to the "official" history written by the goa'uld themselves, the goa'uld were originally "a godly race sent from beyond the stars to give the galaxy purpose and guide the younger races to wealth and prosperity." In reality, they are a parasitic, warring race bent on domination at all costs. Goa'uld would often recognize those amongst themselves with the most territory as "system lords," a title that eventually stuck and came to signify great power.

Millennia ago, the the goa'uld who would eventually become known as Ra established dominance over the his fellow goa'uld after a series of key battles and alliances. Ra, along with his queen Hathor, began reorganizing and restructuring the empire in his own vision. Having seen the power of religion and its ability to sway followers to a cause on the numerous worlds he conquered, Ra ordered the new religion codified and taught to all denizens and slaves of the empire, establishing a deep-rooted belief in the Goa'uld as all-powerful gods, with the System Lords as the "pantheon" of greater gods and Ra as the "all-father" figure, granting himself the title of Supreme System Lord to signify his power.

Throughout the following millennia, the Goa'uld fought with each other to prove their primacy over their fellow "gods," driving their many followers, warriors, and slaves to conquer and die in their names. Wars between the goa'uld, the System Lords in particular, have been near constant since the empire's creation, with different goa'uld fighting, forming alliances, deposing each other, and absorbing or dividing the losers' territories and armies amongst themselves.

Connections

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