c. 65 BBY
|Physical and technical specifications|
|Usage and history|
- "The Sith grew past the use of lightsabers. But we continue to use them, if only to humiliate the Jedi."
- ―Darth Sidious
Palpatine's lightsabers were a collection of at least four Sith blades created by the Dark Lord of the Sith, Darth Sidious. A patron of the arts, Palpatine's weapons were of an elegant and graceful design, with a refined electrum finish. However, Palpatine was of the opinion that the Sith had outgrown the use of lightsabers, and wielded his own merely as an affectation to mock the Jedi. Indeed, Palpatine wielded his original handcrafted weapon with sufficient skill to overcome three of the Jedi Order's finest duelists, and battle Swordmaster Mace Windu to a standstill. However, Palpatine would lose to Windu, inadvertently dropping his original lightsaber out of his office window during the engagement, where it would be lost in the alleyways and gutters of the Coruscant Underworld.
Ever the pragmatist, Palpatine already had a series of back-up weapons prepared; weapons possessing a near-identical design, though replacing the gold electrum with an unknown black material. One such back-up weapon would be wielded against Jedi Grand Master Yoda, and carried with Palpatine for the next two decades. Palpatine possessed a further two back-up sabers, distinguished from their siblings by their silver-grey casing, which the Dark Lord utilized when he dueled Darth Maul and Savage Opress on Mandalore. However, these weapons would be no doubt destroyed with his body on board the Death Star II during the Battle of Endor. After his resurrection, Palpatine would take to wielding trophy Jedi lightsabers.
Being a patron of the arts, Darth Sidious designed an elegant weapon with a high level of craftsmanship, clearly influenced by the Sith Lord's love of antiquity. The body of the lightsaber was fashioned from nigh-indestructible phrik alloy while the flat emitter was composed of aurodium. The whole of the weapon possessed a refined and elegant electrum finish. The weapon utilized a synth-crystal as the focusing crystal.
Palpatine himself felt that the Sith had outgrown the use of lightsabers, and only continued carrying them to mock the Jedi. He ultimately viewed his own lightsaber as little more than an affectation, and rarely wielded it in combat.
Creation and early usageEdit
- "Within a long, slim, rod-shaped cavity around which the sculpture had been forged rested a device that had lain, waiting, in absolute darkness - darkness beyond darkness - for decades."
- ―Palpatine's thoughts while retrieving his lightsaber.
Darth Sidious created his lightsaber during his apprenticeship, and used this weapon throughout his Sith training under Darth Plagueis. When he began his political career, he concealed his lightsaber within a neuranium statue of Sistros, having the piece fabricated around his lightsaber. The weapon remained hidden within the statue for at least two decades, waiting until Palpatine needed it. During this period, Sidious was forced to use back-up weapons when he needed to wield a lightsaber, supplying some to Darth Maul while training him. On one occasion, he even needed to wield his Master's lightsaber in lieu of his own.
In 20 BBY, Palpatine learned that his former apprentice, Darth Maul, was alive following a twelve year exile and was on Mandalore with his brother Savage Opress having conquered the planet. Palpatine took his two lightsabers with him and travelled to the Sundari Royal Palace in his personal starfighter and confronted the two brothers. After exchanging brief words with Maul, he pulled out and used two lightsabers to combat the two.
Strained only once in the duel only very briefly, Sidious managed to separate Maul from his brother. When Opress recovered from a kick he received from Sidious, the two dueled to the point where Sidious sidestepped Opress and impaled the Nightbrother with his lightsabers, killing him.
Shortly after that, Maul rushed to his brother's side as he died. Sidious - again exchanging brief words - leapt down with both lightsabers and continued to duel Maul. After disarming the Zabrak, he put his lightsabers away in the folds of his robes having won the duel and incapacitating Maul
Showdown on CoruscantEdit
In 19 BBY, Palpatine revealed to the Jedi that he was the Sith Lord. As Mace Windu and his Jedi entourage rushed to the Senate Office Building to confront him, Palpatine retrieved his lightsaber in advance, so as not to be unarmed when they arrived. He retrieved it telekinetically by igniting it within the statue and seizing it once it burned its way out. Hiding the weapon within his sleeve, Palpatine awaited the Jedi. After a quick dialogue for the benefit of an audio recording device hidden in his office, Palpatine brandished the weapon. With a cry more animal than human, the Sith Lord leapt at the Jedi, cutting down Agen Kolar and Saesee Tiin, leaving both of them dead without blocking so much as one of his strikes. The Nautolan Kit Fisto managed to survive for mere seconds before it was a duel only between Palpatine and Windu.
Gaining the early advantage, Palpatine gained ground on Windu. However, Windu's Vaapad technique allowed him to counter the Sith Lord's rage-fueled frenzy. The Jedi guided the battle towards the bay window of Palpatine's office and out onto the wind-blown ledge outside. The precarious position of the battle prompted Palpatine to channel some of his power into a Force-grip on the permacrete, marginally decreasing his speed. Windu briskly disarmed the Sith Lord with a surgically precise kick to the face, throwing Palpatine off-balance and causing the Sith Lord to drop his lightsaber as he flailed for purchase. The lightsaber fell out the window into the bottomless streets and alleyways of Coruscant below. Consequentially, it also forced him to only rely on one lightsaber when duelling Yoda later.
- "From the shadow of a black wing, a small weapon - a hold-out, an easily concealed backup, a tiny bit of treachery expressing the core of Sith mastery - slid into a withered hand and spat a flame-colored blade of its own."
- ―Palpatine brandishing his backup lightsaber.
Being ever cautious, Sidious had constructed a backup lightsaber. This weapon was largely identical to his first lightsaber, except that it was constructed of an unknown black alloy rather than the electrum and phrik finish of his original weapon.
Like his first weapon, Palpatine concealed this lightsaber up his sleeve. When the Jedi Grand Master Yoda confronted him in the aftermath of Order 66, Palpatine brandished the weapon. During their lightsaber duel, they were seemingly matched in combat. To tip the odds, Palpatine abandoned lightsaber combat and assaulted Yoda telekinetically. Leaping onto one of the delegation pods in the Senate arena, Palpatine attempted to inundate the Jedi Master, and though they proved evenly matched, the diminutive master was forced to retreat. 
When his apprentice, Darth Vader, went about constructing his own lightsaber, Palpatine provided his elegant weapon as a model, as well as the synth-crystal that powered Vader's weapon. Vader regarded Palpatine's lightsaber as little more than an antique, and while respectful of its high level of craftsmanship, he preferred a weapon with more ballast. Vader's resulting weapon was little more than an enlarged version of his first Jedi lightsaber, machined out of a black alloy.
Palpatine carried the lightsaber for a great deal of his life afterward, though he only rarely wielded it in combat, as his position as Galactic Emperor made battles with other Force-users few and far between, and he preferred to rely on his raw ability with the Force in any case. Notably, he did brandish his lightsaber during the rebellion of the Sa Cuis clones, though he never actually used it, as Darth Vader dealt with the uprising himself.
When Galen Marek confronted him and Vader with the intention of rescuing the recently captured Rebel leaders, Palpatine sat back and allowed Vader to confront the Force-adept. When Marek bested the cyborg Vader, Palpatine began appealing to him to slay Vader and replace him as his apprentice. As Marek mulled over the idea, the Jedi Rahm Kota, one of the captured Rebel leaders, sprang into action. Telekinetically seizing Palpatine's lightsaber from the Sith Lord's very sleeve, Kota killed the guards holding him and leapt at Palpatine.
Palpatine brought Kota down with a blast of Force lightning. However, Kota's actions prompted Marek to attack him rather than Vader, and after a lengthy battle, during which Palpatine fought unarmed, Marek brought down the Dark Lord.
- "Poor Jedi, your kind will soon be extinct. And how fitting that one of their precious lightsabers brings an end to the Jedi delusion!"
Palpatine possessed at least four such trophies, storing three of them on a weapon rack in his Cloning Laboratory, and keeping one secured to the bottom of his bedside table in his chambers.
The lightsaber kept in his bed chambers was stolen by Leia Organa Solo during her captivity on Byss, along with the Tedryn Holocron. He took up one of the lightsabers in the laboratory, wielding it against Luke Skywalker and managing to defeat the Jedi with it. He carried this lightsaber with him until his next death during the Battle of Pinnacle Base, where it was destroyed along with current body.
- Star Wars: Darth Plagueis
- Star Wars Episode I Journal: Darth Maul (First appearance)
- Star Wars: Clone Wars Adventures
- Star Wars: The Clone Wars: Darth Maul: Shadow Conspiracy
- Star Wars: The Clone Wars – "The Lawless"
- Star Wars Episode III: Revenge of the Sith
- Star Wars Episode III: Revenge of the Sith novel
- Dark Lord: The Rise of Darth Vader
- In His Image (Mentioned only)
- A Two-Edged Sword
- The Force Unleashed novel
- The Force Unleashed video game
- Star Wars: Battlefront II
- Star Wars: Revenge of the Sith: The Visual Dictionary
- Star Wars: Beware the Sith
- Star Wars: The Ultimate Visual Guide: Special Edition (Picture only)
- Jedi vs. Sith: The Essential Guide to the Force (Picture only)
- Star Wars: The Ultimate Visual Guide: Updated and Expanded (Picture only)
- The Essential Reader's Companion (Picture only)
Notes and referencesEdit
- ↑ 1.0 1.1 1.2 1.3 1.4 Star Wars: Revenge of the Sith: The Visual Dictionary
- ↑ 2.0 2.1 2.2 2.3 2.4 Star Wars Episode III: Revenge of the Sith
- ↑ 3.0 3.1 3.2 3.3 3.4 3.5 Dark Empire
- ↑ 4.0 4.1 4.2 Dark Lord: The Rise of Darth Vader
- ↑ 5.0 5.1 5.2 The Force Unleashed video game
- ↑ Star Wars: Lightsabers: A Guide to Weapons of the Force
- ↑ Star Wars: Darth Plagueis
- ↑ Star Wars Episode III: Revenge of the Sith novel
- ↑ Restraint
- ↑ Star Wars: The Clone Wars – "The Lawless"
- ↑ Star Wars: The Clone Wars: Darth Maul: Shadow Conspiracy
- ↑ A Two-Edged Sword