- "Secret, shall I tell you? Grand Master of Jedi Order am I. Won this job in a raffle I did, think you? 'How did you know, how did you know, Master Yoda?' Master Yoda knows these things. His job it is."
- ―Yoda to Tallisibeth Enwandung-Esterhazy
Grand Master was a title used in both the Old and New Jedi Orders to describe the recognized head of the Order. While separate from the title Master of the Order, which was used to describe the elected leader of the Jedi High Council, the positions were often filled by the same being.
The title of Grand Master had existed within the Jedi Order for much of its history, representing the elected head of the entire Order. Appointment of a Grand Master was reserved to the Jedi High Council, with a unanimous vote needed to install the Order's leader. Bestowed only upon the Order's greatest and wisest of all Masters, it was not unheard of for several Masters to hold the title, forming elite guilds before the Ruusan Reformations of the Galactic Republic.
Held by several Masters throughout the Order's history, the earliest recorded Grand Master was Biel Ductavis. The Kel Dor Zym was the Grand Master throughout the Great Galactic War, Zym was assassinated shortly after the fall of the Jedi Temple, in the year 3,653 BBY. Some point not long after, Satele Shan was elected as Grand Master, becoming the youngest known individual to ever receive the title. Several millennia later, Master Fae Coven held the title, leading reforms within the Order as it moved away from its militant position it held throughout the Old and New Sith Wars. During the Republic's Golden Age, Coven authored the Temple guidebook, The Jedi Path: A Manual for Students of the Force, with the help of some of the leading Masters of the era. Master Coven served a long term, even meeting her eventual successor, Yoda. Master Yoda was the last known Grand Master of the Order, holding the title as early as 82 BBY. Under Yoda, the Order was disbanded as the Dark Lords of the Sith returned to power in 19 BBY and ushered in a new era which saw the initiation of the Great Jedi Purge.
Before his death, the exiled Master Yoda helped Luke Skywalker complete his training as a Jedi; Skywalker would eventually rebuild the Order and declare himself Grand Master during the Swarm War of 36 ABY. Leading the Order he built for many years, Skywalker was held responsible for the actions of the Jedi-turned-Sith Jacen Solo by the Galactic Alliance government. After trying the Grand Master, Chief of State Natasi Daala exiled Skywalker from Coruscant and the Jedi Order in 43.5 ABY until he could prove what had caused Solo's turn to the dark side of the Force. In the mean time, Skywalker and Daala agreed to the appointment of Master Kenth Hamner as acting Grand Master, until Skywalker returned or the High Council elected another Master.
When tensions between Daala's Galactic Alliance and the Jedi Order grew, the Jedi refused to continue appeasing her demands of the Order. The Masters wanted to launch a wing of StealthXs to help Skywalker fight a new Sith threat, but Hamner feared that the Galactic Alliance would think the launch was against them and would open fire on the StealthXs. However, when the Council discovered that Hamner had taken unilateral actions in making an agreement with Alliance Admiral Nek Bwua'tu to stall the launch until Bwua'tu gave him permission, they removed him from his position as acting Grand Master and decided to launch the wing, forming a plan with Booster Terrik to keep the starfighters safe. Hamner attempted to stop the StealthX launch, and in the ensuing skirmish with Master Sebatyne, he fell to his death. The Masters then unanimously voted for Sebatyne, who had led the vote of no confidence against Hamner, as the new acting Grand Master. She felt that the appointment was wrong, as she was deeply upset over her failure to prevent Hamner's death, but eventually accepted the position.
Following a Jedi coup that removed Daala from power and placed the Jedi in charge of the government, Skywalker's sentence was revoked, allowing him to resume his position as Grand Master. He did not return to Coruscant immediately, however, instead staying on Nam Chorios to defeat the dark side entity Abeloth, who was his primary concern for the moment. Skywalker eventually returned to Coruscant and convinced the Jedi to leave the planet in order to lure the Sith out.
Known Grand Masters
- Biel Ductavis (10,966 BBY—)
- Zym (—3,653 BBY)
- Satele Shan (3,653 BBY—)
- Fae Coven (c. 990 BBY—)
- Yoda (—4 ABY)
- Luke Skywalker (36 ABY—)
- Kenth Hamner (Acting Grand Master in Skywalker's absence) (43 ABY—44 ABY)
- Saba Sebatyne (Acting Grand Master in Skywalker's absence) (44 ABY)
Behind the scenes
The Complete Star Wars Encyclopedia introduced the title 'Master of the Order', used to denote the leader of the Jedi High Council. The Jedi Path: A Manual for Students of the Force cleared up the confusion between titles of Grand Master and Master of the Order.
- The New Essential Chronology
- The Essential Guide to Characters
- The New Essential Guide to Characters
- "Jawa's Corner"—Star Wars Insider 95
- Jedi vs. Sith: The Essential Guide to the Force
- The Complete Star Wars Encyclopedia
- Fate of the Jedi: Dramatis Personae
- The Unknown Regions
- The Jedi Path: A Manual for Students of the Force
- "Blaster"—Star Wars Insider 126
- The Art and Making of Star Wars: The Old Republic
- Book of Sith: Secrets from the Dark Side
- "Apocalypse... Now!"—Star Wars Insider 132
Notes and references
- ↑ 1.0 1.1 1.2 The Jedi Path: A Manual for Students of the Force
- ↑ 2.0 2.1 Star Wars: The Old Republic, Threat of Peace Act 2: New Galactic Order
- ↑ 3.0 3.1 Biographies on SWTOR.com
- ↑ Yoda: Dark Rendezvous
- ↑ 5.0 5.1 Star Wars Episode III: Revenge of the Sith
- ↑ 6.0 6.1 Dark Nest III: The Swarm War
- ↑ 7.0 7.1 Omen
- ↑ Outcast
- ↑ 9.0 9.1 9.2 Vortex
- ↑ 10.0 10.1 Conviction
- ↑ Ascension
- ↑ Essential Guide to Warfare