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The Ferengi culture has roots similar to that of the Human race, filled with wars, violence and greed. The main difference between the two societies is that the Ferengi never developed a socialistic attitude as the Federation eventually did. Also, at no time in their history did the Ferengi have anything comparable to atrocities like slavery or genocide that occur in Human history. These were alien concepts to them before they met other races who practiced them, a distinction the Ferengi feel makes them morally superior to the 'barbaric' Human race that did. Ferengi culture slowly grew out of its early stages by introducing a remarkable economic system. With the purchase of warp technology sometime after the 20th century and the birth of the Ferengi Alliance, they completed the transition to their current position as leaders of interstellar markets and commerce. (DS9: "The Jem'Hadar", "Little Green Men")
Unlike most other cultures who frequently idolize warriors or politicians, throughout Ferengi history, businessmen have been the pillars of society. Eventually, the business and political fields grew together, over a thousand years ago, in the creation of the office of Grand Nagus. The first Grand Nagus was also responsible for creating the Rules of Acquisition, the ground rules for all Ferengi business dealings.
- At least 10,000 years ago
- The Ferengi discover currency and the concept of profit. Ferengi history begins. (DS9: "Little Green Men")
- 1,000 years ago
- Gint, first Grand Nagus, authors the first edition of the Rules of Acquisition. (DS9: "Body Parts")
- On July 2nd, a Ferengi shuttle from the 24th century crashes in Roswell, Earth. Humans make First Contact with the Ferengi. The event is buried by the United States of America. (DS9: "Little Green Men")
- The Ferengi are contacted by the Valakians, in an effort to find help curing a devastating plague on their homeworld, Valakis. The Ferengi offer to help but leave without doing so, when they realize the Valakians cannot pay. (ENT: "Dear Doctor")
- The Ferengi and Humans meet each other again, when a Ferengi ship attacks a Starfleet starship. The Humans involved, the crew of Enterprise NX-01, leave with little or no knowledge of their assailants, as they were rendered unconscious so the Ferengi could loot the ship, apparently in accordance with Ferengi salvage laws. However, the first contact went unrecorded by the Humans. (ENT: "Acquisition")
- The Battle of Maxia is fought between the USS Stargazer and a Ferengi ship commanded by Bok's son. (TNG: "The Battle")
- Official first contact between Humans and Ferengi occurs in the Delphi Ardu star system. (TNG: "The Last Outpost")
- The Bajoran wormhole is discovered. Grand Nagus Zek sees vast profit to be made in the uncharted Gamma Quadrant. (DS9: "The Nagus")
- Zek launches his first attempt to trade with the Gamma Quadrant. He invites the Dosi to Deep Space 9, where he appoints Quark to open negotiations to buy tulaberry wine from them. The attempt inadvertently leads to the discovery of the Dominion by Alpha and Beta Quadrant powers. (DS9: "Rules of Acquisition")
- The Ferengi Bill of Opportunities is amended by Zek, under advice from Ishka to allow Ferengi females to wear clothing. Later that year, the Board of Liquidators considers allowing females to earn profit. (DS9: "Profit and Lace")