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Up to date as of February 04, 2010

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This article is about the Yavin 4 temple. You may be looking for the Lorahns temple.
Great Temple
General information

c. 5,000 BBY


26 ABY


Yavin 4




The Great Temple, commonly referred to as the Massassi Temple, was built on Yavin 4 by the Massassi to worship Naga Sadow, a Sith Lord who had enslaved and mutated the Massassi using Sith Alchemy. The Temple later housed the Rebel Alliance base and the Jedi Praxeum. The Temple was destroyed during the Yuuzhan Vong occupation of Yavin IV.



The Great Temple, was built on Yavin 4 by the Massassi to worship Naga Sadow, a Sith Lord who had enslaved and mutated the Massassi using Sith Alchemy.

The Massassi continued to worship their god at the Temple even after he entered a state of hibernation inside a sarcophagus. They continued to worship there for over a thousand years (long after their god's presumed death at the hands of Freedon Nadd) until Exar Kun eliminated the species. Kun allowed the Massassi warrior Kalgrath to remain behind, however, guarding the Temple in a state of hibernation.

Massassi Temple is damaged during the Battle of the Jedi Praxeum.

During the Galactic Civil War, Rebel Alliance scout Dr'uun Unnh discovered the temple. The Alliance chose Yavin IV due to its exclusion from official Imperial maps, after being forced to secretly abandon their former base on Dantooine. After retrieving the Temple's key from the fabled Yavin Vassilika, Roons Sewell and Jan Dodonna built the Massassi Station (Yavin Base, callsign "Base One") within the Temple. The Rebel Alliance launched its assault on the first Death Star from this facility. Shortly after the Battle of Yavin, the Rebel Alliance was forced to abandon it.

Luke Skywalker established his Jedi Praxeum in the temple in 11 ABY. It was attacked in 12 ABY by Admiral Daala's forces. The temple was partially demolished in 23 ABY during the Battle of the Jedi Praxeum, but promptly reconstructed by a joint New Republic-Jedi effort throughout 24 ABY.

Kyle Katarn confronted Desann in the underground portion of the Temple (where Desann was defeated). Then later, Tavion Axmis commanded her Reborn to suck the Force energy out of the above ground portion of the Temple.

The Temple was destroyed down to ground level by the Yuuzhan Vong in 26 ABY, although the underground levels remained partially intact.


Great Temple cutaway.

Internally, the Great Temple was divided into four levels, each representing a step of the ziggurat—each level was thus larger in floor plan than the one above, but all were outfitted on broadly similar plans with small cells, chambers and corridors around a large central space.

When the Rebel Alliance set-up their base, the outer surface of the Massassi Temple was left as untouched as possible. Interior chambers, however, were roughly hewn by the Rebels prior to being filled in with chambers and a main central lift cluster. Rebel engineers also reinforced the temple's original stone floors with ferrocrete. The base was powered by a generating station composed of stolen Imperial Star Destroyer reactor components two kilometers from the temple.[1]

Floor plan of the temple.

The topmost level, was almost entirely taken up by the Grand Audience Chamber, used as a ceremonial hall by the Alliance garrison and later employed by the Jedi Academy as a teaching space. Under the Alliance, the next level contained officers' quarters, and the base's security, communications and medical facilities, with the central room serving as a command center; the Jedi would later convert this level entirely to accommodation and storage. On the level below, the central chamber was outfitted by the Alliance as the War Room, later re-named as the Strategy Center by the Jedi: this was where the Alliance commanders coordinated the fighter attack on the first Death Star in 0 BBY. The surrounding rooms on this level, used as stores and technical workshops by the Alliance, were converted by the Jedi to meeting-rooms, communications and computing bays, kitchens and dining halls.

The hangar bay of the Rebel base.

The lowest level of the temple was used by the Rebels and the Jedi alike as a vast hangar bay to store starfighters and other vehicles; there was also a second hangar beneath, plus cellars and catacombs that remained largely unused in both phases of reoccupation. Access to the hangar was by a set of ground-level blast-doors, opening out onto a landing pad.

During the Jedi period, the average ground level around the structure's exterior had risen, so that the main entrance was at War Room level, and many of the students thought of the entire hangar complex as being essentially underground - although the hangar doors must have remained accessible, the area in front of them no longer served as the main landing zone. The entrance faced a clearing, while a river now flowed close to the temple along the other two sides. Also during this time, a room known as the Hall of Judgment was built within the temple.

Behind the scenes

Massassi Temple concept art by Ralph McQuarrie.

The temple scenery was actually the ruins of a Mayan temple in Tikal, Guatemala.

In the rough draft of Episode IV, the "Mavassi outpost" was an Imperial installation on Yavin. Leia is imprisoned here, and Annikin Starkiller and his Wookee allies attempt to free her, but she has already been sent to the Imperial space fortress. It becomes the "Massassi Outpost" and a Rebel base in the second draft.[2]

There are many different descriptions of the Massassi Station. In Star Wars: Battlefront and in Star Wars: Battlefront II, the station is depicted as being a small, grim-looking hangar with a control room in the back. However, in Star Wars: Jedi Knight II: Jedi Outcast and Star Wars: Jedi Knight: Jedi Academy, it is depicted as having a more elaborate interior, with hangars, training rooms, and the Grand Audience Chamber. In Star Wars: Rogue Squadron 3: Rebel Strike, it is seen as containing a large hangar, main launch tube, and many rooms, including the room where Princess Leia and other Rebel leaders were stationed during the Battle of Yavin.



Non-canon appearances

  • LEGO Star Wars II: The Original Trilogy
  • LEGO Star Wars: The Complete Saga
  • Tag & Bink Are Dead
  • Star Wars: Rogue Squadron II: Rogue Leader
  • Free Memory (Ambiguously canonical source) (Appears in flashback(s))


Notes and references

  1. Star Wars: Complete Locations
  2. The Making of Star Wars: The Definitive Story Behind the Original Film

External links

This article uses material from the "Great Temple" article on the Starwars wiki at Wikia and is licensed under the Creative Commons Attribution-Share Alike License.


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