Boskone is one of the two superpowers in the Lensverse, and is opposed to Civilization. Having been created possibly even billions of years ago, when the Eddorians first entered our universe, it is much older than Civilization. Due to the nature of the Eddorians and the system they created, it is both extremely hierarchical and utterly ruthless: the concept of "the end justifies the means" is taken to extremes, as Galactic Patrol notes:
- "Anything - literally [i]anything at all[/i] that produced the desired result was commendable; to fail was the only crime. The successful named their own rewards; those who failed were disciplined with an impersonal, rigid severity exactly proportional to the magnitude of their failures."
Boskone was organised much like a pyramid, with Eddore at the top and millions of less species underneath. Of the major species mentioned, the organisation seems to be as follows:
- Thrale, Onlo & Kalonia
- The Eich
- Helmuth in the First Galaxy
- Various subordinate species and the like
Location & Size
Boskone began with a strong presence in Lundmark's Nebula, but had thoroughly penetrated the Milky Way by the time of Triplanetary. Within Kimball Kinnison's lifetime however, Boskone is pushed out of the Milky Way, much of its territory in Lundmark's Nebula is captured, and it is eventually defeated entirely.
Like Civilization, Boskone was composed of practically every kind of alien imaginable, from humans and near-humans to the Eich, creatures that are nigh-impossible to describe. Unlike Civilization however, Boskone was quite prepared to impose itself on new worlds it discovered by force, whereas Civilization only tended to do that to enemy (ie, Boskonian) worlds.
In the Lensverse, telepathy acts as a universal language, and although there are popular languages amongst those species that can speak them (versions of English and Spanish being popular amongst Civilization's species for example), there is nothing like an official language ever mentioned.
Largely unknown. Although some worlds such as as Thrale appear to have been quite well organised and run, in many cases it was a lot more corrupt (see Lonabar). In addition, the philosophy of "the end justifies the means" meant that justice was a concept that was not well known under Boskonian rule.
Most of Boskone's population appears to live on planets, although given the prevalence of artificial gravity and scale of both Boskone and Civilization this may not hold true in all cases.
The economy of Boskone is hardly developed at all in the books, although given the propensity for corruption and dictatorial means of control it is highly likely that the economy was less efficient and more heavily taxed than Civilization's.
The Eddorians are the secretive backers of Civilization, with their star system not even heard of by people like Kimball Kinnison prior to the Eddorians' final defeat. However, many of the orbital fortresses in place at Eddore were manned by Kalonians, so it may not have been totally unknown to all members of Boskone.
Boskone made great use of Civilization's more liberal nature, and was heavily involved in piracy and drugs trafficking, both as a means of income and unconventional warfare. Thionite in particular was a serious issue for Civilization. However, in keeping with their strictly hierarchical nature, the Eddorians kept the military and criminal aspects of Boskone separate from one another: whilst Thrale appears to have been the base of their military might, Kalonia seems to have run the criminal side, and the two had very little communication with one another, if any.
Speeds within a galaxy tend to be no more than 90 to 100 parsecs per hour (roughly 2.5 million times the speed of light), although in intergalactic space the speed can rise to 100,000 parsecs per hour
Boskone has had enormous shipbuilding and maintenance capabilities, being able to build, just prior to the loss of Thrale, more cruisers and other light warships in a few hours than could possibly be used effectively by its main fleet. Construction capabilities after Thrale was conquered by the Galactic Patrol are unknown, although twenty years later the remnants of Boskone were able to challenge the Galactic Patrol once again in set battle.