PT How did Darth Sidious choose the name "Darth Vader"? ... and the meaning of Sith names

Discussion in 'Prequel Trilogy' started by MrFantastic74, Mar 2, 2012.

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  1. MrFantastic74 Jedi Grand Master

    Member Since:
    Oct 4, 2010
    star 4
    Just wondering if anyone knows the rationale for dubbing Anakin "Darth Vader". Was it just a name off the top of Sidious' head, or is there a meaning behind it?

    "Darth Maul" is obvious. He's a blunt instrument of war.
    "Darth Tyranus" implies that he's a "tyrant", a feared leader.
    "Darth Sidious" could be short for insidious.
    What does "Darth Vader" mean?
  2. Darth_Pevra Chosen One

    Member Since:
    May 21, 2008
    star 5
    I think Vader comes from "invader". Fitting, if you think about it.

    As for an in universe explanation? Possibly means something in the old Sith tongue. No idea what, though.
  3. MrFantastic74 Jedi Grand Master

    Member Since:
    Oct 4, 2010
    star 4
    What did he invade? The temple? Could be, but I'm inclined to think there's some historical Sith link/ reasoning behind the name.
  4. VadersLaMent Chosen One

    Member Since:
    Apr 3, 2002
    star 9
    I think the two leading meanings are "Invader" and in another language(Dutch?) Darth vader mean Dark Father.

    Also there is "Darth Lord of the Sith", taking 'Dar' and 'th' and combining them for a title.

  5. MrFantastic74 Jedi Grand Master

    Member Since:
    Oct 4, 2010
    star 4
    I believe "vater" means "father" in german and dutch, but it's pronounced more like "fotter". I can see how that makes sense as he is Luke's father in the story. However, seeing as Vader was not originally scripted to be Luke's father, I'm inclined to think Lucas just liked the sound of it when he thought of the name. It is a great villain name.

    Story-wise, however, I can't see Sidious selecting the name because it means "father". At that point, Sidious was unaware of the existence or implications of Vader's offspring.
  6. JediofJade Force Ghost

    Member Since:
    Aug 25, 1999
    star 5
    If memory serves me correctly, Sidious drew the name from the Force. I think the novelization says something about him 'listening' to the Dark Side, and hearing "Vader."

    I don't know that we ever got a clear explanation about the creative origin of that name, since, at the time of writing ANH, the whole Vader-is-actually-Luke's-dad thing supposedly was not even a glimmer in GL's eye. I have heard GL say that the name comes from the Dutch word for father, but if Luke's parentage was not a plot point at the time ANH was being written, I don't know why GL thought to use that word.
  7. Lars_Muul Chosen One

    Member Since:
    Oct 2, 2000
    star 6
    He may have come across the word and liked the feel of it, regardless of its meaning.
    Then there are those who claim that he once had a classmate who's last name was Vader.

    It seems clear that Palpatine considers it for a moment before he says "Vader". It does seem as though he takes it from the Force somehow.
    Or, it does have historical significance of some sort.





    Vader - he is a mystery
    /LM
  8. SithStarSlayer Manager Emeritus

    Member Since:
    Oct 23, 2003
    star 6
    Plagueis called Palpatine an "insidious murderer", right before the Naboo noble pledged himself to the Muun's, Sith-teachings...

    My question is, what has Vader ever been REALLY good at?
    Leading from the front lines.

    The great invader.
  9. Lars_Muul Chosen One

    Member Since:
    Oct 2, 2000
    star 6
    Yes. Perhaps Palpatine could also sense that that's what Vader's primary function would be.
    This could also be the case with Tyranus. Considering what Palpatine was planning, he may have seen it as a fitting name, since Dooku would no doubt be viewed by some as a tyrant - or maybe he was already a tyrant back home on Serenno.





    Sith Masters - they might actually be quite clever
    /LM
  10. Darth_Nub Manager Emeritus

    Member Since:
    Apr 26, 2009
    star 4
    'Vader' (pronounced Vah-der) is Dutch for 'father'. 'Darth', however, isn't a real word in any language.

    'Darth Vader' was basically meant to sound like 'Dark Invader'. It's just meant to sound sinister, as does the term 'Sith', and just as 'Organa' has its own phonetic connotations.
    However, a few years ago, some SW fan turned up one of GL's high school yearbooks - there was a guy called Gary Vader at the same school. Unknown if he & GL knew each other.
  11. Cryogenic Chosen One

    Member Since:
    Jul 20, 2005
    star 5
    Well, in addition to those answers already given...

    "Vader" could also be derived from the Latin "vadere", which means, "to go". Vader is a being who the Emperor knights and then banishes from his sight, commanding him to "go to the Jedi Temple", and then to "go to the Mustafar system", calling upon him to perform foul deeds at each point of banishment.

    "Vader" is also phonetically tied to the Vedas: sacred Hindu texts, the most famous of which is the "Rigveda". "Veda" is a Sanskrit word (pairing Anakin's Sith persona up with his wife, whose first name, "Padme", is also derived from Sanskrit), meaning knowledge, wisdom ("You have great wisdom, Anakin. Know the power of the Dark Side, the power to save Padme"). The word "veda" can also be appended to other words, not necessarily of a religious/liturgical nature. A close analogue in this case is "durveda", which means "with evil knowledge, ignorant". Sidious, the snake (note the repetitive "s" sound), commands his dark shadow to slither in and ensnare those who will be expecting his protection, not his death strike. And it's all ostensibly done for greater knowledge/power.

    The "invader" one is interesting. Vader doesn't have to literally invade anything. But he's an invader of souls. Does he not, of a fashion, invade Anakin's soul? And what about Darth Vader and his place in the canon of humanity? Is he not an abstraction that constantly invades, whenever we get petty, jealous, self-absorbed, and delusional to the point of madness? And what of Star Wars? From the moment this Byronic borg burst through a plastic door, sending white-plastic men ahead of his entrance, was he not invading the narrative, and firmly switching the viewer's gaze from ships and laser bolts, fantastically churning up the invisible carpet of space, to the notion of personal reckonings, power in bipedal form, and even the look and sound of one's own mortality? Darth Vader is the universe. Or the universe revealed through cinema, anyhow.
  12. StampidHD280pro Force Ghost

    Member Since:
    Jul 28, 2005
    star 4
    Tyrannus is too easy.

    Maul, however, may just be a play on words, as in "Shopping Mall", along with "Queen I'm-A-Doll-Uh", Lucas may have been making humor of the commercial side of Star Wars. Episode I when it first came out was much more than just a movie, it was EVERYWHERE.

    Darth Sidious... Insidious is the obvious root word, but the REAL name of the Emperor, as far as I'm concerned is Darth Sh***iest. There, I hope I can say that. I'm serious. I won't go into it, but between the possible occult meaning behind "Order" "66", the fact that Sith is an anagram of a dirty word, and finally the way Sidious tells Vader "Once more the S*** will rule the galaxy and we shall have p***." If you really listen to the way he says it, it sounds like a bad word, and when you think about it, it fits.

    There's my speculation for today.
  13. drg4 Force Ghost

    Member Since:
    Jul 30, 2005
    star 4
    Anyone else think it would be nifty if "Vader" was the name of the retreat where Anakin and Padme got hitched? Implying that, you know, Palpatine has a taste for the ironical?

    Anyone?

    No?

    Alright, I'll leave. [face_worried]
  14. StampidHD280pro Force Ghost

    Member Since:
    Jul 28, 2005
    star 4
    [face_laugh]
  15. Cryogenic Chosen One

    Member Since:
    Jul 20, 2005
    star 5
    Ah! You advance this proposition without realizing that this *is* the case. Well, kinda. The "Naboo Holy Man" that blesses the marriage (mysterious guy who parts screen-left versus the destroyers of the previous scene that part screen-right -- which is also like Tarkin politely striding screen-left when the new lovers, Vader and Sidious, watch over a waterless vista (the shell of the Death Star: new opera "water bubble") in a backs-turned-to-the-camera shot at the close (or almost the close) of the next movie) is sort of like a proxy for Sidious (after knighting Vader and receiving a cordial "Thank you, my master", Sidious also walks screen-left in a soft, priest-like fashion, then covers his bald, friar-like head). What Sidious really does, when inducting his new apprentice into his two-man regime, is to annul one marriage and sanctify another. Sidious replaces Padme as Anakin's betrothed; and Anakin is soon to dismember himself in a token of his love and then rise from the marital bed at his lover's behest.
  16. drg4 Force Ghost

    Member Since:
    Jul 30, 2005
    star 4
    Cryo: At the risk of getting personal, one of my ambitions is to be published in The New Yorker.

    All I need from you is to write the essay.
  17. TOSCHESTATION Force Ghost

    Member Since:
    Jan 17, 2003
    star 4
    I 'second' that, Stampid. ;):p




    [face_sick]




    [face_laugh] [face_laugh][face_laugh]
  18. thejeditraitor Chosen One

    Member Since:
    Aug 19, 2003
    star 4
    damn cryo what kind of stuff opened up your brain so much?
    and where can i get some?
  19. SithStarSlayer Manager Emeritus

    Member Since:
    Oct 23, 2003
    star 6
    Obviously:

    He watched Limitless all weekend on repeat.
    Or, he ate some.
    ;)
  20. StampidHD280pro Force Ghost

    Member Since:
    Jul 28, 2005
    star 4
    Something else I missed.

    TyrANUS? Eh? eh?
  21. MrFantastic74 Jedi Grand Master

    Member Since:
    Oct 4, 2010
    star 4
    Tire-sized anus? That's begs the question as to how Sidious knew that about him...
  22. Cryogenic Chosen One

    Member Since:
    Jul 20, 2005
    star 5
    Do or do not. There is no tyr.

    (Poo or poo not. There is no... *STAR WARS SAGA POOP JOKE QUOTA EXCEEDED!).

    * * *

    Thanks (?), guys.

    8-} :p

    The secret is lots of dark chocolate. Preferably in biscuit form.

    Combine with fragrant essence of cat wee. A misbehaving, widdling cat will sort that one out for free.
  23. StampidHD280pro Force Ghost

    Member Since:
    Jul 28, 2005
    star 4
    [image=http://www.andalusiaexpress.com/images/Bahlsen_ChocoDark125g.jpg]
    Like this? Really? Well, Ohhhkay!

    I've got the cat urine covered already.
  24. Cryogenic Chosen One

    Member Since:
    Jul 20, 2005
    star 5
    I am not familiar with those bis-kets, but they look good!

    My baked poison of choice is usually one of the McVitie's range: dark choc Digestives or Hob Nobs.

    DEEEEELIGHTFUL!

    I don't dare to ask how you already have the cat urine covered.

    Cat urine. Covered. Not covered in, I hope. YEY ZEUS!

    * * *

    And not to get too serious or anything, guys, but...

    Blame Lucas, not me.

    In the original SW movie, Obi-Wan famously described Vader as being seduced by the Dark Side.

    In ROTS, we even have that remarkable visual of the Emperor slowly raising his hands into the air, Bishop-of-Rome-style, as he ushers in his new regime while his new apprentice secretly does his bidding. The Emps is also a father figure; and "pope" is derived from the Latin "papa" -- a child's word ("Anakin"/"anak" = "child" in Filipino) for "father".

    So, in a way, Anakin marries his own father, or something. This is like a comedic inversion of the famous Sophoclean tragedy "Oedipus Rex" (where the titular character marries his own mother). In fact, the mother of that play is called Queen Dowager Jocasta, and there is both a serving queen, a former queen, whom Anakin courts and marries (a mother surrogate), and an arrogant librarian elder called Jocasta, in AOTC.

    Mythology is screwed up. But it is only documenting our own decadence.
  25. EHT New Films Manager

    Manager
    Member Since:
    Sep 13, 2007
    star 6
    This thread has taken a bit of a detour ([face_laugh]), but here goes...

    I think the "father" angle out-of-universe is a big part of it. In-universe, I think invader is the main derivation... just like insidious without the "in" becomes "Sidious".

    Regarding the choosing of the name, I love how Sidious delivers those lines. "Henceforth, you shall be known as Darth... Vader". That long pause and the way he says the line sounds like the dark side itself is supplying the name for him. I believe the ROTS novel may even suggest that interpretation, which I thought was cool because I thought that the first time I watched ROTS, before reading it.
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