Saga A List of SW Names and Their Meanings

Discussion in 'Star Wars Saga In-Depth' started by thejeditraitor, Jul 30, 2014.

  1. thejeditraitor Chosen One

    Member Since:
    Aug 19, 2003
    star 4
    maul- attack, claw, lacerate also a weapon used for ramming or crushing.
    sidious - insidious - causing a harm that is gradual or not fully noticed.
    coruscant- shining, glittering.
    tyranus- tyranny- cruel, unreasonable or arbitrary use of power/control.
    luminara- a glowing votive light.
    geonosis- genesis- origin or formation.
    grievous- very severe, awful.
    mygeeto- megiddo- city identified with armageddon.
    vader- pater- father.
    savage oppress- savage- fierce, untamed. oppress- keep in hardship or subservience.
    moraband- moribund- dying, expiring, terminal.
    antilles- an archipelago of islands in the caribbean.
    greedo- greed- avarice, selfishness.
    durge- a lament for the dead.
    klaatu barada nikto- quote from the film "the day the earth stood still".
    wicket warrick- from warrick davis.
    rancor- bitterness, resentfulness.
    endor- the witch of endor was mentioned in the bible.

    these are just the obvious ones. there are many more. feel free to add some.
    Last edited by thejeditraitor, Jul 30, 2014
  2. ATMachine Force Ghost

    Member Since:
    Feb 27, 2007
    star 3
    Darth Vader: originally Dark Water, with additional connotations of death and invader. The later meaning of dark father was an extremely happy accident.

    Anakin: from the Anakim, a race of giants in the Old Testament, but also influenced by the name of director Ken Annakin.

    Luke Skywalker: from Loki Sky-walker, the trickster god of Norse mythology. (It's also "Luke S." -- geddit?) This name was originally applied to the Obi-Wan Kenobi character, a cunning warrior.

    The simultaneous Biblical and pagan symbolism of Luke's name is similar to that of Frank Herbert's Paul Atreides.

    Obi-Wan Kenobi: intended to have the same cadence as Toshiro Mifune.

    Grand Moff Tarkin: originally, as Grande Mouff Tarkin, applied to a minor character who was a high priest. From the title Grand Mufti, the chief priest of the Ottoman Empire.

    Millennium Falcon: partly from The Maltese Falcon, as Lucas intended Han Solo to resemble Humphrey Bogart.

    Alderaan: from Aldebaran, a star in the constellation Taurus.

    Hoth: named after Nazi general Hermann Hoth from World War II.

    Tatooine: from Tataouine, the location of filming in Tunisia on the first movie.

    Utapau: presumably from Utopia. In early script drafts this name was applied to Tatooine.

    Yavin IV: partly from the planet Altair IV in the film Forbidden Planet.

    Corellia: from the planet Korell in Isaac Asimov's Foundation series.

    Senator Palpatine: from the wealthy neighborhood of the Palatine Hill in Rome, and the character of Senator Palantine in the film Taxi Driver.

    Padme: from "om mani padme hum," a Buddhist mantra used in meditation.

    Qui-Gon Jinn: jinn are spirits of fire with great magical power in Islamic mythology, said to be the only sentient species besides humans.

    Nute Gunray: from Republican politicians Newt Gingrich and Ronald Reagan.

    Jedi: from jidai-geki, the Japanese term for period-piece films, with additional influence from jeddak, a Martian noble title in Edgar Rice Burroughs' Barsoom series.

    Sith: from the name of a giant Martian wasp in the Barsoom books.

    Bantha: from banth, a Martian beast of burden in the same source.

    Dune Sea: an homage to Frank Herbert's Dune.
    Last edited by ATMachine, Jul 30, 2014
  3. thejeditraitor Chosen One

    Member Since:
    Aug 19, 2003
    star 4
    count dooku- based on the Japanese word "doku," meaning poison.

    kanan jarrus- kane starkiller, the land of canaan from the bible.

    hera syndulla- hera queen of the greek gods, cham syndulla from tcw.

    starkiller- kane starkiller.

    mace windu- mace and windy from the early sw drafts.

    shaak ti- possibly derived from the female Hindi deity of strength Shakti.

    Aquilae- which is the Latin plural or genitive of aquila, or "eagle".

    agent kallus- callous- showing or having cruel disregard for others.

    pre-vizla- pre-visualization.

    darth bane- bane- a cause of great stress.

    darth plagueis- plague- cause continual problems or stress- a disease.

    hondo ohnaka- hondo- a 1953 film with john wayne.

    cad bane- cad- a man who acts with deliberate disregard for another's feelings or rights

    asajj ventress- named after the character Asaji from Akira Kurosawa's Throne of Blood
    Last edited by thejeditraitor, Jul 31, 2014
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  4. Cael-Fenton Force Ghost

    Member Since:
    Jun 22, 2006
    star 2
    Kenobi - 'sword-belt'
    Qui-Gon - from qiqong, the Chinese traditional sort-of equivalent of yoga. In this context, gong means 'practice' or 'art', as in cultivated skill; qi means life energy/force (its basic literal meaning is, roughly, 'breath').

    The Dark Water one is cool, I hadn't caught that.

    And here I was thinking Nute had something to do with ray guns :p
    Last edited by Cael-Fenton, Jul 31, 2014
  5. Darth Eddie Jedi Grand Master

    Member Since:
    May 14, 2013
    star 3
    For some there are multiple influences/precedents:
    Geonosis - Geo/"earth" + gnosis/"Knowledge"
    Endor - one of Tolkien's elvish names for Middle-Earth

    Some others:
    Kamino- camino, spanish for road or street
    Organa- Organism/Organic etc.

    Some sillier ones:
    Jar Jar Binks - something silly Jett Lucas said when he was little
    Ima Gun Di - "I'm gonna die", a name for a 'redshirt' tcw jedi who doesn't survive the episode.

    And my favorite of all: Luke- George Lucas, derp.
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  6. Seagoat Force Ghost

    Member Since:
    Jan 25, 2013
    star 4
    Actually, I don't know if it was intentional or not, but Luke is a name with Greek origins, best translated as "light giving." Rather fitting, considering his actions
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  7. Darth Eddie Jedi Grand Master

    Member Since:
    May 14, 2013
    star 3
    I see your point, but there's no way it wasn't intentional.

    As a writer myself, I know a writer named Lucas wouldn't pull "Luke" out of nowhere.
  8. ATMachine Force Ghost

    Member Since:
    Feb 27, 2007
    star 3
    Endor isn't from Tolkien's Middle-earth (that would be Arda), it's actually from the Witch of Endor mentioned in the Bible.

    Luke is clearly a Biblical name, but when combined with Skywalker it also invokes the pagan symbolism of Loki. Just as Frank Herbert did with the name Paul Atreides (Atreides means "son of Atreus," usually referring to the brother-kings Menelaus and Agamemnon from Homer's Iliad). And yes, the resemblance to Lucas is surely intentional.

    And as long as we're doing name from the early drafts:

    Aquilae is named after the Latin genitive of the constellation Aquila, the Eagle. (Its brightest star, Altair, is also known as Alpha Aquilae.)

    In the 1974 rough draft, Aquilae was the name of the desert planet ruled by Princess Leia. The name begins with the letter A and has three syllables, like Frank Herbert's Arrakis. But it's also meant to recall Aquilonia, the kingdom ruled by Conan the Barbarian in Robert E. Howard's stories.
    Last edited by ATMachine, Jul 31, 2014
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  9. Cael-Fenton Force Ghost

    Member Since:
    Jun 22, 2006
    star 2
    Endor is the Quenya name for Middle-earth, as in, the mortal-inhabited lands. Arda is the name of Tolkien's whole physical world (including the Great Sea, the atmosphere and the 'immortal' islands in the West).
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  10. Bail B. Baobab Force Ghost

    Member Since:
    Jan 21, 2014
    star 5
    The inflected form Endorenna "into Middle-earth" occurs in the text of ROTK.

    I do, however, suspect GL got the name from the Bible rather than Tolkien.
    Last edited by Bail B. Baobab, Jul 31, 2014
  11. ATMachine Force Ghost

    Member Since:
    Feb 27, 2007
    star 3
    Hmm, I guess I was wrong. I bow to your superior Tolkien knowledge. I haven't re-read The Silmarillion in a long time, so I'd forgotten that Endor made it into the finished text.

    Lucas does seem to have read The Silmarillion when it came out back in 1977, so it's quite possible after all that he did get the name from Tolkien.
    Last edited by ATMachine, Jul 31, 2014
  12. Cael-Fenton Force Ghost

    Member Since:
    Jun 22, 2006
    star 2
    LOL, I didn't mean to sound all "iamverysmart", sorry about that. I do think the name is from the Bible, rather than Tolkien, too.
  13. ATMachine Force Ghost

    Member Since:
    Feb 27, 2007
    star 3
    Oh, I wasn't making fun of you by any means. I really was impressed.

    And given the evidence you provided, I actually do think it's quite likely that The Silmarillion was an influence on the planet name in ROTJ. After all, Tolkien's book appears to have been a major influence on the early plot outlines for Willow.
  14. Lt.Cmdr.Thrawn The Other Saga Moderator

    Manager
    Member Since:
    Sep 23, 1999
    star 6
    Alderaan is also, I believe, the name of an asterism that is no longer recognized / "official."

    Interesting connection between 'Utapau' and 'utopia.' I never noticed that one.

    And if I recall, Massassi (a tribe name, though not related to Masaai I don't think) appears in a description in The Hero With A Thousand Faces.
    Last edited by Lt.Cmdr.Thrawn, Aug 1, 2014
  15. Sarge Chosen One

    Member Since:
    Oct 4, 1998
    star 4
    Skywalker: one who walks the sky.

    I'll let myself out, thanks anyway.
  16. Cael-Fenton Force Ghost

    Member Since:
    Jun 22, 2006
    star 2
    Mustafar - from mustapha (Arabic), 'chosen one'. As in divinely chosen: it's an epithet for the Prophet.
    Last edited by Cael-Fenton, Aug 7, 2014
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  17. Iron_lord Chosen One

    Member Since:
    Sep 2, 2012
    star 6
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  18. Seagoat Force Ghost

    Member Since:
    Jan 25, 2013
    star 4
    If we're going by the original drafts....

    Starkiller: one who kills the star
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  19. Sarge Chosen One

    Member Since:
    Oct 4, 1998
    star 4
    Whoa... Dude... That's, like, so totally deep, man... The symbolism, like, makes you really think, you hear what I'm saying, right? It's like, I dunno, poetry or something.
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  20. Imperial Reject Jedi Grand Master

    Member Since:
    Dec 6, 2012
    star 2
    Mortis is Latin for Death. thought that was pretty cool
  21. ATMachine Force Ghost

    Member Since:
    Feb 27, 2007
    star 3
    To be precise, it's Latin for "of death," being in the genitive (possessive) case instead of the nominative, or subject case (which would be mors).
    Last edited by ATMachine, Aug 17, 2014