Before the rise of the Galactic Republic, and during their period of galactic domination, the Sith built a shrine on Coruscant. The Jedi Order later constructed the Jedi Temple over the shrine, but the residual power of the dark side of the Force from the shrine clouded their vision. This was exploited by Darth Sidious, who destroyed the Jedi Order and created the Galactic Empire.
During their brief galactic domination, the Sith constructed a shrine on the planet Coruscant. Following the Sith Order's defeat at the hands of their sworn enemies, the Jedi Order, the Jedi Temple was raised over the shrine's foundations in a symbolic attempt to bury the legacy that the Sith had left behind on the galactic capital. Millennia later, this decision would prove disastrous for the Jedi Order, as Darth Sidious, the reigning Dark Lord of the Sith, was able to make ample use of the wellspring of dark side energy that lay at the shrine's heart; clouding the vision of the Jedi Council, and masking his true motives and identity until it was too late.
Following the destruction of the Jedi Order, and the reformation of the Galactic Republic into the Galactic Empire, Darth Sidious—known publicly as Emperor Palpatine—had the Jedi Temple converted into the Imperial Palace, at which point the shrine was finally excavated. Sidious used the shrine as his private sanctum, where the Sith Lord spent much of his time meditating on the nature of the dark side.
Behind the scenesEdit
- "The Jedi tried to cap the power of this shrine, but there's leakage. It's not just Sidious; it's the power of history, it's the residue of what's left of the dark side there."
- ―James Luceno
The Sith shrine was introduced in the 2014 novel Tarkin, written by James Luceno. The idea of the Jedi Temple being built atop ancient temples would have been explored in a story arc in the television series Star Wars: The Clone Wars, but the show was cancelled before such episodes could be produced or released. In the arc, former Jedi Padawan Ahsoka Tano would have returned to the Jedi Temple and, with several other Jedi, taken drilling machines down far beneath the Jedi Temple and discovered a Sith temple beneath it. Series director Dave Filoni and creator George Lucas decided that the Jedi Temple had been built over ruins from ancient worshippers of the Force, possibly including the Sith. The concept of the Jedi Temple being built over a wellspring of dark side energy was previously introduced in the continuity of Star Wars Legends.
In introducing the concept through Tarkin, Luceno compared the shrine and the construction of the Jedi Temple atop of it to how Hernán Cortés, the Spanish Conquistador, destroyed the Aztec city of Tenochtitlan. After the destruction, Aztec temples were razed and churches were built in their place, with legends persisting that the churches had not entirely eliminated the power of the temples. In Tarkin, Luceno introduced a similar concept where he postulated that the Jedi were not able to stop the power of the shrine.
- Tarkin (First appearance)