Neral was a Romulan who served as the proconsul, and later the praetor, of the Romulan Star Empire in the 2360s and 2370s. His immediate family was killed in a Klingon raid in 2350. (DS9: "Inter Arma Enim Silent Leges")
When Neral assumed the office of proconsul in 2368, he seemed to be a relatively young and idealistic man who was receptive to the idea of reunification with the Vulcans. Through Senator Pardek, he communicated his willingness to meet with Ambassador Spock on the matter. In fact, Neral was conspiring with Commander Sela to conquer Vulcan. His apparent sympathies to the cause of reunification were merely to lure Spock to Romulus so that he could provide a pretext for the Romulan invasion force. (TNG: "Unification I", "Unification II")
|Praetors of the Romulan Star Empire|
|Colius • Unnamed (c. 2266) • Neral (c. 2374) • Hiren (c. 2379) • Shinzon (c. 2379)|
Neral was played by Norman Large in "Unification I" and "Unification II", and by Hal Landon, Jr. in "Inter Arma Enim Silent Leges". When asked why Large was not sought to reprise his role, Ronald D. Moore remarked, "We did consider it, but decided to go in another direction." (AOL chat, 1999)
Given the character's appearance as a much-older man in Deep Space Nine, it appears that in the space of only six years, time has taken a devastating toll on him...
The script for "Unification II" describes Neral as "an energetic, handsome man in his late forties, a Romulan Bobby Kennedy." The script for "Inter Arma Enim Silent Leges" further describes Neral as "a seasoned politician, a ruthless in-fighter who's survived more than one coup attempt. He's a man who seldom lets anything get in his way."
According to the short story "Requital" contained in Tales of the Dominion War, Neral is present aboard Deep Space 9 for the signing of the Treaty of Bajor, during the events of "What You Leave Behind".