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Sith Empire
Political information
Type of government

Magocratic/Theocratic Empire

Head of State

Dark Lord of the Sith (Jen'ari)

Head of Government

Dark Lord of the Sith (Jen'ari)


Dark Lord of the Sith (Jen'ari)

Legislative branch
Societal information
Official language


State religious body


Historical information
Formed from

Exiles, Sith

Date of establishment

6,900 BBY

Date of fragmentation

4,990 BBY

Date of reorganization

4,970 BBY; by Sith Emperor

Date of dissolution

Unknown; sometime after 3,623 BBY

Date of restoration

Unknown; by unknown Sith Emperor


Old Republic era

"Across the reaches of the galaxy, through seas of dark stars, rivers of whispering black shadow from the Republic's ancient past. Evil history we had thought forgotten."
Jedi Master Ooroo

The Sith Empire, later the Old Sith Empire or True Sith Empire,[1] was a rich and powerful empire established by Dark Jedi banished from the Galactic Republic after their defeat at the Battle of Corbos during the Hundred-Year Darkness. The Jedi exiles fled to the remote world of Korriban. After conquering it, they interbred with the native Sith species through the art of Sith Alchemy and began a long period of building and expansion. The Sith Empire developed in complete isolation for two thousand years before it eventually rediscovered the Republic.

Under the leadership of the Dark Lord of the Sith Naga Sadow, the Empire invaded Republic space during the Great Hyperspace War, but it was defeated. The Sith Empire was believed to have been destroyed by Republic forces during the Second Battle of Korriban, but in fact survived due to a single Sith Lord who escaped to the Unknown Regions. There, this new Sith Emperor, whose rule lasted for well over a thousand years, rebuilt the Sith Empire and struck back against the Republic in the Great Galactic War in 3,681 BBY.





Karness Muur and XoXaan lead the Exiles to Korriban.
"Once we were mighty Jedi of the Republic, brothers in the Force but the Great Schism between the Dark side and the Light turned Jedi against Jedi. Our ancestors were defeated, driven off, cast out! But we turned our exile into victory, here on the far side of the galaxy. In these unblemished worlds we found the Sith people treated us as Gods! After many centuries some of us have interbred with the Sith while others still bear true Jedi blood. Our Sith Empire is great, rich, and powerful. This is our Golden Age."
Dark Lord of the Sith Marka Ragnos

The formation of the Sith Empire occurred in circa 28,000 BBY on the world of Korriban following the defeat of the Rakata invaders at the hands of King Adas. His leadership led to all of Korriban being united under his rule and led to his appointment as Sith'ari or Overlord of the Sith. Using the remains of the enemy craft, the once primitive Sith were propelled into the space age and were armed with the power of the dark side of the Force. Using these newly acquired traits from the Infinite Empire, the newly formed Sith Empire conquered other nearby worlds which became part of Sith Space with their capital being relocated from ancient Korriban to the neighboring world of Ziost. The reign of this empire was short lived, however, as it dissolved into civil war after the death of King Adas leaving his people regressing into a more primitive state.

Around the year 6,900 BBY, exiled fallen Jedi—fleeing from the Battle of Corbos, which concluded the Hundred-Year Darkness—landed on Korriban, a desolate world inhabited by the relatively primitive but unusually Force-sensitive Sith people. Using their training in the Force, the fallen Jedi amazed the Sith, and elevated themselves to god-like status on Korriban, becoming the rulers of the Sith people. As years passed, and interbreeding occurred between the Fallen Jedi and the Sith, the term "Sith" came to mean not only the original inhabitants of Korriban, but also their fallen Jedi masters. Thus was the Sith Empire born, with nearby Ziost becoming the capital, while Korriban became a sacred mausoleum-world.

The Golden Age of the Sith

"…Our Sith Empire is great, and rich, and powerful…this is our Golden Age."
―Marka Ragnos

In time, the Sith formed an immensely rich and powerful empire that was built upon the use of sorcery and the dark side which fueled their technology. At its height, the Old Sith Empire ruled over at least 120 worlds. Over the centuries, the Dark Jedi Exiles were forgotten by the Galactic Republic even as all records of the Republic were lost to the Sith. This meant that the two civilizations thrived but in isolation leading to them being ignorant of the existence of one another. The Old Sith Empire was noted as being immensely rich and powerful; being built upon sorcery and possessing dark side fueled technology that was possibly adapted from the scattered ruins of the fallen Infinite Empire.

This period in history saw the Golden Age of the Sith Empire and saw relative stability as well as power within it. At the time, the Dark Lord of the Sith was a particularly powerful and long lived individual called Marka Ragnos. After ruling for a century, his death caused a power vacuum within the leadership of the Empire which saw the conservative Ludo Kressh and the liberal Naga Sadow amass power in order to propel themselves onto the Sith throne.

At some point during the Golden Age, the Sith Lord Ieldis created a slaver organization known as the Crucible which was tasked with capturing refugees displaced from war in order for them to be used as a slave army that would fight for the Sith Empire.

Fall of the Empire

"I cannot fail like this! Conquest is the destiny of the Sith Empire!"
Naga Sadow during the defeat of the Sith Empire at the Great Hyperspace War.

In circa 5,000 BBY, the isolation of the Sith was broken when two young hyperspace explorers called Gav and Jori Daragon stumbled upon Korriban by accident whilst they attempted to establish a hyperlane. After being captured and interrogated, the conclave of Sith Lords discovered the existence of the Galactic Republic which led to Ludo Kressh declaring the explorers spies as well as sentencing them to death. However, Naga Sadow disagreed and used this new discovery as part of a dream to extend the Empires rule over vast new territories through conquest. Masterminding the capture of the two Daragons, Sadow declared that they had escaped and planted evidence that showed the Republic had rescued them. When Kressh discovered this subterfuge, he brought a fleet to Sadow's stronghold where Sadow convinced Jori Daragon that she should flee to warn the Galactic Republic. Using a beacon placed on her ship, he discovered the path to Republic space and unleashed his hidden fleets which devastated Kressh forces whereupon they charted a course to new territories.

Thus began the Great Hyperspace War which saw an assault against the capital of Coruscant itself. Whilst his initial attack was so ferocious that it overwhelmed the Republic Naval forces defending that world. It was only the accidental interruption of Sadow's battle meditation as well as reinforcements led by Empress Teta that broke the Sith offensive. Sadow fled with what few forces he had left but not before unleashing a Sith superweapon that caused a supernova at Primus Goluud. His act of betrayal against Gav Daragon also turned the young explorer against his master and he revealed to Empress Teta the hyperspace coordinates of the Sith Empires territories. When Naga Sadow returned to Sith Space, he learnt that Ludo Kressh had survived and confronted him over Korriban leading to a conflict between the two fleets. Kressh himself was killed when one of Sadow's battleships rammed into it at which point the fleets of the Republic arrived which attacked the weakened Sith forces. The Sith Empire was broken as a result with the remaining forces being used by Sadow to allow him to escape. The Jedi Order and the Galactic Republic worked to destroy any remaining strongholds of the Sith which saw the end of their once glorious empire which was now defeated.

Recession and Regrowth

"You thought that the corrupted remnants of the Republic, the machines spawned by technology that Revan led into battle were the Sith? You are wrong. The Sith is a belief. And its empire, the true Sith Empire, rules elsewhere. And Revan knew the true war is not against the Republic. It waits for us, beyond the Outer Rim. And he has gone to fight it, in his own way."
Kreia, to the Jedi Exile

Unbeknown to the galaxy at large, a surviving Sith Lord had fled from the carnage of the Great Hyperspace War to the Unknown Regions. In a desperate bid to survive, these Sith plotted a blind jump into hyperspace where they managed to find shelter from the Republic and the Jedi Order. There the Sith Emperor began to rebuild the Sith Empire in secrecy, using dark rituals to prolong his life and his undisputed rule. After a period of twenty years, those forces under his command rediscovered the lost Sith world of Dromund Kaas which became the capital of the Empire which continued to rebuild in secret.

The rebuilt Sith Empire remained hidden for a millennium, but the relics of the old Empire continued to shape the events of the galaxy. The fallen Jedi Freedon Nadd absorbed himself in the teachings of the Sith and communed with - and subsequently destroyed - the spirit of Naga Sadow. Exar Kun, in turn, was lured to the Dark Side centuries later by the ghost of Freedon Nadd. His actions led to the Great Sith War, which tore the galaxy apart and instigated the fall of Ulic Qel-Droma. This led to a shortly reborn Sith Empire under his reign until his defeat on the world of Yavin IV.

Several decades later, the Mandalorian Wars began, but this time it was not the memories of the Sith but the Sith themselves manipulating galactic events. Revan, after leading a faction of Jedi in the fight against the Mandalorians, discovered that the Sith Empire survived and was the driving force behind the Mandalorians' decision to attack the Republic. Recognizing the enormity of the threat posed by the Sith, Revan sought to unify and strengthen the galaxy in preparation for the coming war. To this end, Revan allowed himself to be consumed by the dark side and corrupted his followers in the crucible of Trayus Academy on Malachor V. After defeating the Mandalorians, Revan assaulted the galaxy under the title of "Sith," intending to supplant the Republic with a regime of his own which would be strong enough to defeat the true Sith. After his apprentice Darth Malak turned on him, an amnesiac Revan was led by the Jedi Council to save the Republic from the threat of Malak, whose indiscriminate and violent conquest was weakening the galaxy. As Revan's memories returned, he remembered the true Sith and his reason for going to war against the Republic. Revan then disappeared into the Unknown Regions to fight the Sith Empire.

Revan's former master Kreia learned of this, and in 3,951 BBY revealed the existence of the Sith Empire to the Jedi Exile. As she recounted, the true Sith had existed for millennia prior to the rise of the Revan's Sith Empire. She stated that both Malachor V and Korriban had once been planets at the edges of the mysterious Empire, and that while the true Sith had forgotten those ancient worlds of the dark side, they would remember. Following in the footsteps of Revan, the Jedi Exile left to investigate the Sith Empire.


The Sith enter the Jedi Temple during the Sacking of Coruscant.
"Our time has come. For three hundred years, we prepared. We grew stronger while you rested in your cradle of power, believing your people were safe... protected. You were trusted to lead the Republic but you were deceived, as our powers over the Darkside had blinded you. You assumed no force could challenge you and now... finally, we have returned."
―An unidentified Sith during the Sacking of Coruscant(audio)Listen (file info)

For over a millennium, the Sith Emperor continued to lead his people and saw the rebuilt Sith Empire grow in power. It began using new technology which saw the creation of a mighty military with one purpose in mind; domination of the galaxy and to avenge the defeat of the Great Hyperspace War. These plans sought to re-establish the Sith Empire as a major galactic power; a status it had once had before, achieved during the Golden Age of the Sith. As the appointed time approached, the Sith began infiltrating the star systems of the Outer Rim where they sowed the seeds of discord and began making secret deals with the local criminals and warlords. Once these pieces were in place, the Sith were ready to begin a massive offensive which would catch the Jedi completely off guard.

It had been over three hundred years since the Jedi Civil War when the Sith Emperor began his ancient plans by igniting the Great Galactic War. With his forces marshaled, the Sith finally made their move and the true Sith invaded Republic space; catching them off guard. This attack allowed the Empire to seize control of many worlds in the Outer Rim Territories as well as saw the destruction of the shipyards at Sluis Van. Also during this time, the Sith had been active in the criminal underworld of the galaxy. The Hutt Cartels were not happy with the Sith for not including them in their conspiracy and Sith Imperial Intelligence worked behind the scenes to ensure that they along with other criminal groups such as the Mandalorians did not join the Republic. Initially, Sith diplomats sought to entice the Mandalorians and bounty hunters to join them but failed in their duty. This led to Sith Imperial Intelligence working behind the scenes to cultivate a puppet leader to unite the Mandalorian clans which they found in the gladitorial rings on Geonosis. Rigging the fights, the Sith managed to get their champion to win who ultimately became the new Mandalore and united the clans against the Galactic Republic. Though none were aware of it at the time, the Mandalore secretly answered to his Sith masters.

An unidentified Sith Lord using Force lightning during the assault on the Jedi Temple at the Sacking of Coruscant

The widespread war saw numerous worlds such as Ilum and Dathomir being turned into battlegrounds whilst Manaan surface cities were destroyed despite their attempts to remaining neutral in the conflict. The Republic saw further defeats at Agamar and Utapau though persistent struggle at Bothawui slowed down the Sith invasion forces. The conflict between the Sith and the Republic raged on for decades which saw the Sith Emperor becoming increasingly impatient at the progress of the war. This saw the Dark Council giving the Republic a surprising offer; a chance to negotiate a peace. Though skeptical, the Republic could not afford to ignore this opportunity and thus the Jedi Council agreed to it as the war was seen as unwinnable. Unknown to them, the Sith planned a desperate gamble after the defeat of the Mandalorian blockade in the Outer Rim and sought a quick means of bringing their enemies to their knees.

Diplomats from both galactic governments met on the world of Alderaan but whilst these negotiations were occurring, the Sith Empire had one last act to play. Using this distraction, the Sith launched a sneak attack against Coruscant itself and landed an elite army to storm the galactic capital and held the planet hostage. Led by Lord Angral, the Empire ransacked the planet after which they bombarded the world. This act of betrayal saw the destruction of the Jedi Temple and the deaths of six of the twelve members of the Jedi High Council. With their plan a success, the Empire forced their terms to the Republic who had no other choice but to sign the uneven Treaty of Coruscant.

Thus the war ended and the Sith Empire saw itself restored as a galactic power. Since the signing of the treaty, the Emperor withdrew in order to pursue his own mysterious goals and thus deferred control of the Sith Empire to the Dark Council. This act set the stage for a brutal power struggle due to the formation of a political vacuum where the strongest and most cunning of Sith and Imperial leaders fight in order to assume authority. During the years that followed the treaty's signing, tensions continued to mount between the Empire and the Republic which led them to the brink of another war. The Sith Empire also sought to consolidate their dominion and crush its enemies.


After the final destruction of the Sith Empire, the Sith and their order were believed to had been extinct for millennia. However, they had in fact been recreated by Darth Bane, who instigated the Rule of Two, thus transforming the Sith from a powerful open empire and order into a covert one, where there was only a master and an apprentice. This ensured their secrecy until one of their ranks, Darth Sidious, was responsible for bringing down the Galactic Republic which had destroyed the Sith Empire. By instigating the Clone Wars thousands of years later, Sidious was responsible for bringing about a spiritual successor of the Sith Empire of old by forming the Galactic Empire—a government led by the Sith and consisting of many aspects of the long destroyed Sith Empire.

Decades after its creation, the Galactic Empire was destroyed, and it seemed that the legacy of the Sith Empire was gone with it. However, unknown to many, a forgotten remnant of the Sith Empire had been left abandoned on the planet Kesh, which formed the Lost Tribe of Sith who sought to bring about the great splendours of their ancestors to the galaxy. Even further to the future, the dark shadow of the Sith still fell across the galaxy when the teachings of XoXaan were used by the fallen Jedi that became known as Darth Krayt, who used them to found the One Sith.

Government and Politics

The Dark Council confers.

The leader of the Sith Empire was the Dark Lord of the Sith. The Sith Council was a body of advisors to the reigning Dark Lord of the Sith. It consisted of ten members made up of Sith Lords within the empire. Each Lord on the Council personally ruled over a dozen worlds. This Council convened in a great citadel on Ziost.

By the time of the Great Galactic War, the Empire was ruled by a Sith Emperor, with the Dark Council filling the role of the pre-Hyperspace War Sith Council. This version of the Sith Empire was rebuilt by the remnants of the original empire. However, unlike the original, this empire consisted of both Sith and non-Sith within its ranks. In regards to interactions with other governments and powers, the Empire made use of Imperial Diplomacy who sent agents that spoke on behalf of the Sith.

In this reborn Sith Empire, one of the more dangerous bodies within it was Imperial Intelligence that was capable of working behind the scenes and engaged in missions for their Sith masters that ranged from sabotage to assassination.



The Sith Empire was far smaller than the Galactic Republic, but much wealthier and more centralized, and in possession of unique and potent technologies. The Sith Lords allegedly controlled the riches of a thousand species.

During the time of the Great Galactic War, the imperial population was far less than that of the Galactic Republic. Despite this, by the time of the Treaty of Coruscant, the Sith Empire controlled near half of the galaxy.

Society and culture

A Massassi and Kissai
"In times long past, the Sith race proved malleable…Splitting into a meek and servile Slave class…An intelligent and nimble Engineer class…Others interbred with the early Exiled Jedi—like the ancestors of Ludo Kressh—watering down the powerful bloodlines…But most useful of all were members of the vicious Massassi Warrior class."
―Naga Sadow - referring to the split of the Sith (species) into the four different castes/sub-species: Slave caste, Engineer caste, Kissai and Massassi.

Culturally, the Sith Empire was very different from that of the Republic, being much more ecumenically-driven than its counterpart. The Sith Empire was hierarchical, utilizing both a rigid caste system and a stratified rank structure to put its subjects in their proper place. Due to how long Sith society has separated the Sith into castes (across approximately 130,000 years), each caste is sometimes referred to as a sub-species of Sith.

Slave Caste

Sith slaves were the lowliest caste of the Sith. They worshiped the Sith Lords as gods, and were often used as sacrifices. The Sith Lords used them for slave labor. When a Sith Lord died, his slaves were buried alive with his body in his tomb on Korriban.

Engineer Caste

Sith engineers built and maintained Sith technology, including droids and starships.

Massassi Caste

Massassi were the warrior caste of the Sith. They were unswervingly obedient to the Dark Lord of the Sith; they were also loyal to the individual Sith Lord they served, though this loyalty was secondary to their loyalty to the Dark Lord.

Kissai Caste

Kissai were the priest caste of the Sith. This was most likely where the mages and other practitioners of their ancient and mysterious magic were placed.

Sith'ari Caste

"Sith'ari" was the title translated "Sith Overlord" in Basic. They were the leaders of the Sith. Each Sith Lord has his own slaves and his own army of Massassi while the Sith'ari ruled over all the Sith Lords also. The first Sith'ari was King Adas, who ruled all of Korriban for 300 years. Following his death, many claimed the title of Sith'ari and fought each other in constant civil wars, each ruling only a fief.

Following 6,900 BBY, the current Sith'ari was killed and the Sith interbred with the Jen'jidai, resulting in a mix of Ancient Sith and baseline Human species traits, resulting in many losing the low-light vision which most Ancient Sith possessed. Following the fall of the Sith Empire in 5,000 BBY, the word "Sith'ari" took on the approximate meaning "Chosen One" with later Sith, referring to an unidentified individual who would fulfill a particular Sith prophecy, this prophecy was later fulfilled by Darth Bane.

The Jen'ari

"Jen'ari" was the title translated "Dark Lord of the Sith" in Basic. Jen'ari were the greatest and most powerful of the Sith Lords who took the place of the Sith'ari in the Sith hierarchy. There was only one Jen'ari at a time, who was the head of the Sith council, and ruler of the Sith Empire. The original Jen'ari were Jen'jidai; later Jen'ari were Sith Lords who assumed the title after the death of the previous Jen'ari, defeating any rival claimant to the title in combat (often resulting in death, or at least disfigurement).

From 6,900 BBY to 5,000 BBY, the Sith Lords collectively ruled the Empire through a governing body known as the Sith council, which the Jen'ari ruled over and commanded; each member of the Council had a personal fleet.

Many Jen'ari had partial Jen'jidai ancestry, which was, in some, considered more desirable. After the fall of the Sith Empire, the title "Dark Lord of the Sith" was used by both the leader of the Sith Order (such as Exar Kun or Revan) and his apprentice (such as Ulic Qel-Droma or Malak), although it is uncertain if the title "Jen'ari" remained in use in any capacity, or was abandoned for the title "Darth".

Great Galactic War Era

Within the later reborn Sith Empire of the Great Galactic War era, it was known that the upper echelons of power were held strictly by the Force-sensitive Sith Lords, and supreme power was held by the Sith Emperor. Despite this, there were millions of loyal citizens within their Empire many of whom served in support roles such as those held by Imperial agents, as well as government roles such as Moffs. To them, such positions were the highest ranks they could achieve within the Sith Empire.


By the time of the Great Galactic War, the Sith made use of the Imperial Army and Navy to enforce its will on the galaxy. The army consisted of loyal Sith troopers but also consisted of elite Imperial Commando.



Sith Battleships bombarding Coruscant




The worlds of the first Sith Empire in Sith Space

The region of the Galaxy that the Sith Empire ruled was known as Sith Space in a region of space surrounded by the Stygian Caldera. It contained at least 120 inhabited worlds, including:

The territory of the Sith Empire after the Treaty of Coruscant


Behind the scenes

The existence of the "True Sith" has caused some confusion with their placement in the canonical timeline of galactic chronology. When Star Wars: Knights of the Old Republic II: The Sith Lords was first released, the establishment of the Old Sith Empire was believed to have taken place circa 25,000 BBY. Additionally, the beginning of the "True Sith"'s existence was fixed as being approximately "tens of thousands of years" in the past. In 2005, however, the establishment of the Old Sith Empire was retconned to have happened around 6,900 BBY, which presented a new divide in the historical placement of the two groups, and indeed in the very nature of the Sith themselves.

It has since been mentioned by VIPs on developer Obsidian Entertainment's message boards that the company in fact did not use the "25,000 BBY" date as a basis for their development of the "True Sith;" the order was conceived as an entirely separate geographic group from the later Sith Order of Marka Ragnos and its like.

Later, it was discovered that, after the Sith King Adas died while driving the Rakata from Korriban in 27,700 BBY, the Sith species possessed the technology to relocate themselves to nearby planets, creating the region known as Sith Space and the earliest Sith Empire.

Sith war mountaineers and Sith warbirds may be different artistic interpretations of the same creature; this seems plausible given the very different artistic interpretations of Sith war behemoths. Sith war worms may be simply Force illusions rather than actual animals.


  • Tales of the Jedi: The Golden Age of the Sith (First appearance)
  • Lost Tribe of the Sith: Precipice
  • Tales of the Jedi: The Fall of the Sith Empire
  • Star Wars: Knights of the Old Republic (Mentioned only)
  • Star Wars: Knights of the Old Republic II: The Sith Lords (Mentioned only)
  • Timeline 1: Treaty of Coruscant (Mentioned only)
  • Timeline 2: The Mandalorian Blockade is Broken (Mentioned only)
  • Timeline 6: Onslaught of the Sith Empire (Appears in hologram)
  • Star Wars: The Old Republic
  • Star Wars: The Old Republic: Fatal Alliance
  • Darth Bane: Rule of Two (Mentioned only)
  • Dark Lord: The Rise of Darth Vader (Mentioned only)
  • Omen
  • Abyss
  • Star Wars Legacy 30: Vector, Part 11 (Appears in flashback(s))


Notes and references

  1. Timeline 1: Treaty of Coruscant

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

Star Wars Fanon

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Sith Empire may mean:

Empires ruled by the Sith

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See also

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This article uses material from the "Sith Empire" article on the Star Wars Fanon wiki at Wikia and is licensed under the Creative Commons Attribution-Share Alike License.


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