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Word Quest: Searching for Star Wars Word Origins

Ever wonder about the origins of words in the Star Wars universe? Well, here is a collection of facts and speculation about the origins of Star Wars words.

A | B | C | D | E | F | G | H | I | J | K | L | M | N | O | P | Q | R | S | T | U | V | W | X | Y | Z |

4-LOM   4-LOM
4-LOM's StarWars.com Profile

The name of this droid bounty hunter is appropriately an acronym of "for love of money."

501st Legion   501st Legion
501st Legion's StarWars.com Profile

This elite legion of stormtroopers assisted Anakin Skywalker in his Jedi killing spree in Revenge of the Sith. The organization was named after the respected Imperial costuming organization named the 501st Legion. To learn more about this costuming group, visit the 501st Legion's Official Website.


Admiral Ackbar   Ackbar, Admiral
Admiral Ackbar's StarWars.com Profile

Mongul Emperor Akbar conquered much of nothern India and was considered to be the greatest Mongul emperor. He had a great appreciation for knowledge and was known for his religious tolerance.

Alderaan   Alderaan
Alderaan's StarWars.com Profile

German chemist Kurt Alder was a co-recipient of the 1950 Nobel Prize for his research on the structure of organic matter. Alderaan is portrayed as an organic environment, which is also why Bail Organa, who hails from the lush planet, bears a fitting name.


Darth Bandon   Bandon, Darth
Darth Bandon's StarWars.com Profile

Darth Bandon used to study the teaching of the Jedi, but he abandoned the ways of the Jedi and adopted the practices of the Sith. "Abandon" means to withdraw one's support or to give up.

Barada   Barada
Barada's StarWars.com Profile

The name of this skiff guard in Return of the Jedi is a nod to the film The Day The Earth Stood Still (1951), where the mysterious alien phrase "Klaatu, Barada, Nikto" plays a pivotal role.

Jar Jar Binks   Binks, Jar Jar
Jar Jar Binks' StarWars.com Profile

"Jar" means to be irritating, or making a harsh sound. Coincidentally or not, many fans say that Jar Jar is one of the most irratating characters in the Star Wars universe. Also his last name, Binks, sounds similar to the word "jinx" which is a person that is thought to bring bad luck.



Concept artist Ralph McQuarrie's early inspiration for C-3P0's appearance came from the robot in Fritz Lang's Metropolis.


The comlink used by Qui-Gon Jinn is a modified Sensor Excel Razor for Women.

Coruscant   Coruscant
Coruscant's StarWars.com Profile

"Coruscant" means glittering. The name of the planet was coined by Star Wars author Timothy Zahn.

Salacious Crumb   Crumb, Salacious
Salacious Crumb's StarWars.com Profile

"Salacious" means humorously vulger. "Crumb" means a small piece of something, or an offensive person.


    Dod, Lott
Lott Dod's StarWars.com Profile

This Neimoidian senator was named after U.S. Senators Trent Lott (R-Mississippi) and Christopher Dodd (D-Connecticut). Also, although it's probably a coincidence, a British tennis star named Lottie Dod won Wimbledon five time.

Daultay Dofine   Dofine, Daultay
Daultay Dofine's StarWars.com Profile

This Neimoidian is "[g]reedy, deceitful, and cowardly." Daulty may be the merging of the words "faulty," meaning either defective or guilty, and "duality" which suggests deception. "Relax, I'll 'do fine'" sounds like a mantra of an uncertain coward like Dofine.

Durge   Durge
Durge's StarWars.com Profile

A "dirge" is a funeral lament. Also "Dirga" is a Hindu goddess of war.


Eloms   Elom
Eloms StarWars.com Profile

This mole like species "Elom" appropriately is mole spelled backwards.

Endor   Endor
Endor's StarWars.com Profile

"Endor" means "eye of a generation." Also the prefix of the word is appropriately "end" since the conclusion of the Battle of Endor marks the end of Palpatine's corrupt rule over the galaxy.


Jango Fett   Fett, Jango
Jango Fett's StarWars.com Profile

A "jingo" is a militant patriot. A definition of "fett" in German means bold.


Sha'a Gi   Gi, Sha'a
Sha'a Gi's StarWars.com Profile

This self-doubting Jedi Padawan's name and appearance are a nod to Scooby Doo's panicky pal Shaggy.

Gotal StarWars.com Profile

This species looks like goats, since each Gotal has two horns atop its head.

Greedo   Greedo
Greedo's StarWars.com Profile

"Greed" is a selfish desire to have more than one needs. Greedo loses his patience while trying to collect money from Han that Han owed Jabba the Hutt, and Han shoots him.


Isolder   Isolder
Isolder's StarWars.com Profile

Princess Isolde, according to Arthurian legend, wed the king of Cornwall, and had an affair with the knight Tristan. Isolder seems to be a male version of the character since his woos Princess Leia in the Courtship of Princess Leia.


Mara Jade   Jade, Mara
Mara Jade's StarWars.com Profile

"Jade" is defined as a disreputable woman, or a tough green gemstone. Mara's eyes are green and she has a tough personality. Also "mar" means destroy or cause serious harm (Mara used to be an assassin for the Empire). The name "Mara" means bitter.

Qui-Gon Jinn   Jinn, Qui-Gon
Qui-Gon Jinn's StarWars.com Profile

"Qigong" is an ancient Chinese system involving meditation, breathing techniques and other excercises in order to improve one's energy field (qi). Also, "Gon" may forshadow Jinn's death, since he is "gone" by the completion of Episode I.


Kamino   Kamino
Kamino's StarWars.com Profile

In Spanish "camino" means path or road. The planet Kamino is the key pathyway to the Clone Wars, since they are building a clone army and are the site of a key Clone Wars battle.

Ki-Adi-Mundi   Ki-Adi-Mundi
Ki-Adi-Mundi's StarWars.com Profile

"Ki" is pronounced like "qi" which is one's engery field, according to the ancient Chinese system "qigong." "Mundo" is Spanish for "world."

The name of this skiff guard in Return of the Jedi is a nod to the film The Day The Earth Stood Still (1951), where the mysterious alien phrase "Klaatu, Barada, Nikto" plays a pivotal role. Also the main character, the man from outer space, is named Klaatu.


Leviathan   Leviathan
Leviathan's StarWars.com Profile

The word "leviathan" means something (especially a ship) that's unusually large, an apt title for the massive Republic warship.

Lobot   Lobot
Lobot's StarWars.com Profile

Lando's silent human aide, Lobot, has a brain-enhancing device hooked up to his skull. His name is based on the word "lobotomy," which is a brain incision.


Darth Maul   Maul, Darth
Darth Maul's StarWars.com Profile

In German "maul" means mouth of an animal. Darth Maul is a beastlike character that rarely speaks. Also, "mal" in French and Spanish means "bad."

Mon Calamari   Mon Calamari
Mon Calamari StarWars.com Profile

This fishy species was named by creature designer Phil Tippet one day after he ate a calamari salad for lunch.


Ephant Mon   Mon, Ephant
Ephant Mon's StarWars.com Profile

The Elephant Man. "Based on the true story of John Merrick, a 19th-century Englishman afflicted with a disfiguring congenital disease" (IMDB.com).

Naboo   Naboo
Naboo's StarWars.com Profile

Nabu was a Babylonian god of architecture and wisdom, two things that this peaceful planet clearly projects.

Momaw Nadon   Nadon, Momaw
Momaw Nadon's StarWars.com Profile

This gentle Ithorian can be seen sitting peacefully in the Mos Eisley Cantina in A New Hope. "Momaw" sounds like "momma" which is an informal name for mother.

Boss Nass   Nass, Boss
Boss Nass's StarWars.com Profile

"Nass" is the German word for wet, and a "boss" is defined as a leader or also a cow. Boss Nass is the heavyset leader of the underwater Gungan civilization.


The name of this species is a nod to the classic Sci-Fi film The Day The Earth Stood Still (1951), in which the mysterious alien phrase "Klaatu, Barada, Nikto" plays a pivotal role.

Nilo   Nilo
Nilo's StarWars.com Profile

This Rodisar general reached his prestigious rank by bribing politicians, and was an unexperienced, terrible leader. The word "nil" means nothing which is an appropriate assessment of the lackluster general.


Nym's StarWars.com Profile

"Nim" means to steal, and Nym is a space pirate.


Oola   Oola
Oola's StarWars.com Profile

This Twi'lik dancer in Return of the Jedi. Her name sounds similar to the common French expression "Oh la la" which denotes surprise, desire, and envy.

Order 66   Order 66
Order 66's StarWars.com Profile

The number "666" is known as the Number of the Beast, mentioned in the Book of Revelation in the Bible. Order 66 was the order given to the clone trooper to kill all the Jedi.


Gilad Pellaeon   Pellaeon, Gilad
Gilad Pellaeon's StarWars.com Profile

Gilead is an ancient mountainous region that lies in modern day Jordan, east of the Jordan River. In Hebrew Gilead means monument of stones. "Mount Pelion" was the home of the centaurs, according to Greek mythology.


rancor   rancor
rancor's StarWars.com Profile

"Rancor" means to be bitter or angry, and the rancor certainly seems pretty angry in Return of the Jedi.

Dash Rendar   Rendar, Dash
Dash Rendar's StarWars.com Profile

"Dash" means to break or smash and "render" means to give in retribution. This sly smuggler joined the ranks of the Rebels for a time because of a personal grudge he held against the Empire, but Rendar later moved on to persue other opportunities.


Darth Sidious   Sidious, Darth
Darth Sidious' StarWars.com Profile

"Insidious" means "treacherous" or harmfully spreading in a quiet, cautious, manner.

Sifo-Dyas   Sifo-Dyas

Sifo Dias is the mysterious Jedi Master that allegedly put in the order for the clone army on Kamino. Some definitions of the similar sounding word, "cipher," include to encode, write in a secret code, and someone who has no value. "Dyas" is the Latin word for duality.

Young Anakin Skywalker
Anakin Skywalker
  Skywalker, Anakin
Anakin Skywalker's StarWars.com Profile

British film director Ken Annakin was the source of the name. Also "kin" means family. "Kin" as a suffix means "little one." Also the prefix "an" means without, so combine that with "akin" and the litteral definition is "without family." This is appropriate since Anakin has no father, and must leave his only other family member, his mother, on Tatooine when he trains to become a Jedi. His mother dies while Anakin is still a Padawan. This also plays off the whole Chosen One theory, since it reinforces that Anakin is one of a kind. "Anakim" is Hebrew for a race of giants.

    Sleazebaggano, Elan
Elan Sleazebaggano's StarWars.com Profile

A "sleazebag" is slang for someone that is dirty, corrupt or disreputable. Elan Sleazebaggano attempted to sell death sticks (a narcotic) to Obi-Wan Kenobi inside of a nightclub in Attack of the Clones.

Solo, Han (Han Solo's StarWars.com Profile)
"Solo" means alone, and Han is very much a loner. Also in Swedish, Han means "he." Combine this two definitions, and the resulting translation is "he [who is] alone."

Solo, Jacen (Jacen Solo's StarWars.com Profile)
The eldest son of Han Solo and Leia Organa was named by author Timothy Zahn. Zahn's son's best friend at the time was named Jasen. The name "Jason" means he that cures.

Solo, Jaina (Jaina Solo's StarWars.com Profile)
After having already decided on the name Jacen for her twin brother, author Timothy Zahn mulled over several names before ultimately choosing Jaina as the name of the eldest Solo offspring. Zahn wanted the names of the Solo twins to be alliterative like the twins Luke and Leia.

Squib (Squib StarWars.com Profile)
"Squib" means a small firecracker or a brief satire. Squibs are often referred to as being bundles of engergy (like a firecracker) that often jump into situations without properly assessing possible dangers. They also love to haggle.

"Storm troopers" were Nazi soldiers. The white armor clad appearance of stormtroopers can be traced to the police officers in Lucas' earlier film THX-1138.

Tatooine (Tatooine's StarWars.com Profile)
The name originates from the city Tataouine which is located in southern Tunisia.

Thrawn, Grand Admiral (Grand Admiral Thrawn's StarWars.com Profile)
The word "thrawn" means twisted or crooked.

Ti, Shaak (Shaak Ti's StarWars.com Profile)
The word "Shakti" in many South Asian languages translates to strength or power.

Trebor, Coleman (Coleman Trebor's StarWars.com Profile)
This Jedi killed by Jango Fett in the arena battle in Attack of the Clones, is a nod to the effects guy Robert Coleman (Robert spelled backwards spells Trebor).

Tusken Raider
A "tusk" is an elongated projecting tooth. A Tusken Raider's grunt sounds similar to a walrus, which is a tusked animal.

Vader, Darth (Darth Vader's StarWars.com Profile)
In German, "vater" means "father." Also, the english word "invader" means to conquer which sums up Vader's personality.

Valorum, Finis (Finis Valorum's StarWars.com Profile)
"Finis" means the end of something. Valorum is the last of a long line of rulers in the Republic before Palpatine takes charge, topples the Republic, and establishes the Empire. Also "valor" means to be bold and courageous.

wampa (wampa StarWars.com Profile)
The similar sounding word "whomp" means to hit or strike, and the Wampa Ice Creature memorably strikes Luke off his tauntaun in the beginning of The Empire Strikes Back.

Wild Karrde
Talon Karrde's ship the Wild Karrde is pronounced like "wild card." "Wild card" is slang for an unpredictable factor.

Windu, Mace (Mace Windu's StarWars.com Profile)
A "mace" was a powerful spiked war club in medieval times.

Xizor, Prince (Prince Xizor's StarWars.com Profile)
The name Xizor was inspired by the Portuguese name "Xico."

Yoda (Yoda's StarWars.com Profile)
Sounds similar to "Buddha." A Buddha is someone who has achieved perfect spiritual enlightenment. Another similar word is "yoga" which is a Hindu practice that aims to reach a state of inner peace and tranquility.


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