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Saga A List of SW Names and Their Meanings

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

  1. ATMachine

    ATMachine Jedi Master star 4

    Registered:
    Feb 27, 2007
    Padawan: from "Paduan," a term describing people from the Italian city of Padua. By implicit contrast with the equally geographical surname of master artist Leonardo da Vinci - and its homophone, the last name of Leo Vincey (derived from Latin Vindex, "avenger"), protagonist if H. Rider Haggard's 1887 colonial-fantasy novel She. (Leo's name was also the source of Mace Windy's name in the 1973 Journal of the Whills fragment.)

    Tan: this mysterious title, applied to both Anakin Skywalker and Maarek Stele (protagonist of LucasArts' Tie Fighter) has been retroactively deemed an honorific granted to exceptionally skilled pilots. Probably it comes from Japanese dan, or "rank," a word used to denote numerical levels of mastery in both martial arts and high-level go tournaments.
     
  2. ATMachine

    ATMachine Jedi Master star 4

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    Feb 27, 2007
    Actually, at the point in 1978 when Russ Manning declared Luke the offspring of "Master and Mistress Tan Skywalker," it may be because GL was considering naming Luke's father Tan Annikin Skywalker.

    "Anakim" is the name of a race of Old Testament giants. ("There were giants in the earth in those days...") So it's not hard to imagine a joke here punning on the brand name of the Jolly Green Giant.

    Which in turn points to the direction GL was already turning when thinking of Luke's father: ie, making Luke essentially the son of the Annikin Starkiller character from the 1974 rough draft. That version of the SW saga's hero was largely based on Conan the Barbarian, a dark-haired, womanizing warrior of "gigantic melancholies and gigantic mirth."

    The name combination "Tan Annikin" has the same rhythm as "John Chrysostom," an early Christian Church Father revered for his humility and eloquence. In the 1974 revised first draft, GL briefly renamed Annikin Starkiller to "Justin Valor," a similarly Christian reference to the early Church saint Justin Martyr. Likewise, "Chrysostom" means "golden-mouthed," an apropos reference for a deceased Jedi now banqueting among the gods. (Especially if his appetite for mead is equal to that of Robert E Howard's Conan!)
     
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  3. Ord Sorrell

    Ord Sorrell Jedi Knight star 3

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    Oct 16, 2016
    I scanned the thread and Didn't see these... forgive me if I'm mistaken and they've already been translated

    Mon Calamari - "my squid" (or modern: squid served as food, my squid food)

    Dr. Evasan - french for "evasion" I suppose one can say he evaded capture on 12 systems, or should have evaded kenobi's lightsaber swipe

    Bib Fortuna - bib - latin for "Drinking a large amount" or "drinking/pouring regularly" Fortuna latin for "good fortune".. so I guess one could interpret this name to mean regular good fortune, or to bring good fortune

    Salacious Crumb - salacious - meaning "treating sexual matters in an indecent manner, or offensive sexual desires" and Crumb - "objectional or offensive person" (also a piece of food).. so could mean sexually offensive being or sexually offensive being that will end up as food for Jabba

    Oola - "Lizard"

    Max Rebo - latin.. "maximum resound, echo or bellow"

    Jawa - language of the javanese people

    venator - latin "hunter"

    General Grievous - self explanatory "severe, serious, bad"

    one could go on and on
     
  4. ATMachine

    ATMachine Jedi Master star 4

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    Feb 27, 2007
    Bespin: originally "Besspin-Kaaleita" (among other spellings), the name of an Eden-like "garden planet" at an early stage in the development of ESB. At that point the Cloud City planet was called Hoth, and the Imperial capital was Ton-Muund (from French ton monde, "your world," but also with the suggestion of "tomb mound").

    "Besspin-Kaaleita" is a strange set of sounds, yet specific enough (and frequent in GL's notes) that there must be an underlying meaning to it. My guess: it's based on "Brisbane, Australia," capital of the province of Queensland. However, "Kaaleita" also suggests an homage to comics artist Michael W. Kaluta, who illustrated an early 1970s DC comic adaptation of Edgar Rice Burroughs' Carson of Venus.

    The combination of ERB's Venus (a swampy jungle world) as illustrated by MW Kaluta, and the Australian province of Queensland, suggests that GL had a particular source in mind for the Edenic Besspin-Kaaleita. Namely, the wilderness grotto of the goddess Venus, "Queen of Love," as depicted in Richard Wagner's opera Tannhäuser, adapted from medieval Germanic tales about a legendary minstrel singer.
     
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  5. Zejo the Jedi

    Zejo the Jedi Jedi Knight star 3

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    Nov 16, 2016
    Qui-Gon Jinn = The name translates almost literally as "Guardian Spirit of the Living Force."
    Is this true? Thats awesome!
     
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  6. ATMachine

    ATMachine Jedi Master star 4

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    Feb 27, 2007
    Mara Jade: originally from "Mary Read," the real-life female pirate who sailed with Anne Bonny and Calico Jack Rackham in the 18th century Caribbean. As with so much of Zahn's Thrawn Trilogy novels, this name may be a direct borrowing from Lucas' 1970s ideas for SW -- possibly a love interest for Han Solo?
     
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  7. ATMachine

    ATMachine Jedi Master star 4

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    Feb 27, 2007
    Also, he's probably "Chuiee Two Thorpe" because his grandfather, Han Thorpe's father, was Chuiee Thorpe Sr.

    Thus, "Chuiee Two" or "Chuiee Junior." You know, like Leto Atreides, son of Paul, son of Duke Leto.
     
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  8. Seagoat

    Seagoat PT/ST/Music Section Moderatator star 6 Staff Member Manager

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    Jan 25, 2013
    Pretty much

    "qi-gong" is a Chinese spiritual/medical practice sort of like yoga, said to maintain your spirit and body. Sound familiar? Its name is the combined words for life force or vitality, and then accomplishment

    Jinn comes from "djinn", which was later rendered as "djini" and eventually anglicized to "genie". Not quite like in Aladdin, but they're nonetheless magical immortal beings
     
  9. ATMachine

    ATMachine Jedi Master star 4

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    Feb 27, 2007
    And now a few Rogue One names, which don't contain spoilers so far as I know, but I'll tag them anyway.
    Jyn Erso: from "Jan Ors", love interest of protagonist Kyle Katarn in the 1990s Dark Forces games from LucasArts.

    Galen Erso: named for the Roman physician Galen, whose advice was followed by European doctors for well over 1000 years.

    Cassian Andor: from "Prince Caspian" of CS Lewis' Narnia books, who was portrayed with a Spanish accent in the Disney film. The name is a nod to the casting of Diego Luna.

    Director Orson Krennic: his first names is from another famous Director Orson, namely Welles. :p "Krennic" is probably from the surname of a famous German Renaissance painter, Lucas Cranach.

    Chirrut Imwe: first name from "cheroot", a strong Indian cigar. Does Chirrut enhance his "spiritual warrior" abilities with psychoactive substances? The surname "Imwe" is from "Inoue", a common Japanese surname that means "above the well". Rather apposite to the location in the film at which he's first seen.
     
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  10. ATMachine

    ATMachine Jedi Master star 4

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    Feb 27, 2007
    Jocasta Nu: from "new Jocasta," a reference to Oedipus' mother in Greek mythology. Who was also his wife, because Oedipus unwittingly killed his own father and married his mother, thus committing incest. Any similarities to certain Skywalkers are entirely intentional. :p
     
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  11. ATMachine

    ATMachine Jedi Master star 4

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    Feb 27, 2007
    Another couple of Rogue One names:

    Ring of Kafrene: from Khafra or Khafren, the Pharaoh who built the second Great Pyramid of Egypt. However, it also suggests "ring of caffeine," i.e., the stain left by a coffee mug.

    Baze Malbus: from German "böse", meaning "evil," and Fritz Lang's films about crime lord Dr. Mabuse. Which I'm ashamed to say I haven't yet seen.
     
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  12. ATMachine

    ATMachine Jedi Master star 4

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    Feb 27, 2007
    Small correction to the above:
    Baze Malbus' surname probably comes from a portmanteau of Draco Malfoy and Albus Dumbledore, reminiscent of a fandom shipping nickname. It alludes to the nature of his relationship with Chirrut Imwe. And as the English say, "Shame on him who thinks ill of it." :p
     
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  13. ATMachine

    ATMachine Jedi Master star 4

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    Feb 27, 2007
    Dai Noga (alternate name for the Jedi Knights in a 1974 draft): the first word is from the Welsh first name Dai, meaning "shining", also used as a diminutive of "David". The second word is Hebrew: noga, "brightness", which is the Hebrew name of Venus (the Evening Star, aka Lucifer), as well as the name of one of King David's sons in the Bible.
     
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  14. Ewok Poet

    Ewok Poet Force Ghost star 6

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    Jul 31, 2014
    ....and then, what became of it was...Dianoga? HA.
     
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  15. ATMachine

    ATMachine Jedi Master star 4

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    Feb 27, 2007
    Yup! Heh heh.

    Also in the 1974 revised draft: Granicus, an alternate name for the Imperial capital/cloud city planet of Alderaan. Named for the Battle of the Granicus River in 334 BCE, where Alexander the Great first defeated a Persian army as he began his invasion of Asia.
     
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  16. ATMachine

    ATMachine Jedi Master star 4

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    Feb 27, 2007
    Rey: from Spanish "king," as in "el Rey Dorado," the "gilded king" who ruled over a mythical tribe of fabulously wealthy Indians in South America.

    The Medieval French equivalent is "Roy" - as in Siegfried and Roy, the famous duo of Las Vegas tiger-tamers. "Siegfried" of course comes from medieval Germanic legend, dramatized famously by Richard Wagner. And if you've ever bothered watching Wagner's Die Walküre, you'll know the circumstances in which Siegfried was conceived.

    (Spoiler alert: it's twincest.)
     
  17. ATMachine

    ATMachine Jedi Master star 4

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    Feb 27, 2007
    Yavin IV: from Sanskrit "Yavana," the name for Greece used in Indian epic poetry (which is also the source for the name of JRR Tolkien's fertility goddess Yavanna in The Silmarillion). The numeral is from Altair IV in Forbidden Planet.
     
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  18. Sarge

    Sarge Chosen One star 7

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    Oct 4, 1998


    Ah, so the temple was deserted because of monsters from the id! Now it all makes sense!
     
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  19. ATMachine

    ATMachine Jedi Master star 4

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    Feb 27, 2007
    From SW Rebels: Sabine is from the ancient Roman "rape of the Sabine women," an event at the time of the city's founding, where the largely male population of Rome orchestrated the abduction and assault of women from neighboring towns.

    Sabine's just one woman - but Hera is a green-skinned Twi'lek like Oola, and Sabine has brown eyes and skin. Kind of like how you'd expect the daughter of Jimmy Smits to look. Put simply, her name is a nod to the decidedly un-PG events that happen offscreen in Jabba's palace in ROTJ.
     
  20. Lt. Hija

    Lt. Hija Jedi Master star 4

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    Dec 8, 2015
    Sarge wrote

    Ah, so the temple was deserted because of monsters from the id! Now it all makes sense!

    I think this is not the first time we are looking at this kind of allusion:

    [​IMG]

    Ralph McQuarrie image annotation in The Illustrated Star Wars Universe: “In the ruins known as the Temple of the Blueleaf Cluster, a strange crystalline centerpiece seems to throb with dark energy from some event in this world’s past, as if trapped spirits[1] reside in the crystal.”

    [1] Apparently the soul of Exar Kun according to Star Wars: The Ultimate Visual Guide, 2005 (page # 24).
     
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  21. datatapes

    datatapes Jedi Knight star 1

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    Dec 28, 2016
    Vader = invader and sidious = insidious have both been pointed out, but I'm not sure if anyone drew attention to the shared pattern, i.e. an English word with the initial "in" missing from the start. This pattern doesn't seem to have been followed with other Siths' names that I'm aware of, though.
     
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  22. AzureAngel2

    AzureAngel2 Force Ghost star 6

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    Jun 14, 2005
    There could also be another explanation for the meaning of Vader´s sith title. A reverence to the Dutch word for "father", @datapads! The worst SW spoiler ever.
     
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  23. Thom Skywalker

    Thom Skywalker Jedi Knight star 1

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    Dec 1, 2014

    My aunt is dutch. When we were watching ANH she didn't pronounce Vader as we do.
    She said something like "Darth Father". Actually, that's how the word "vader" is pronounced, in dutch...
     
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  24. AzureAngel2

    AzureAngel2 Force Ghost star 6

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    Jun 14, 2005
    I am married to a Dutch man, DarthUncle) more than 8 years, Thom Skywalker. (Even can talk, read and speak it fluently, but with a German accent for which I got heavily discriminated when serving the Dutch school system. Actually, I was a secondary teacher for German in the Netherlands for 6 years, before Steve Sansweet and Matthew Woods personally convinced me to return into kindergarten teaching during the Jedi Con 2010 in Düsseldorf/ Germany.)

    In the end it does not really matter how things are pronounced.

    Lucas also might have used the Irish term "babohan sith", who are female vampires, for his order of dark Force users. And Irish words are pronounced very differently, believe me. (That I know from my former Au Pair mother who was the daughter of on of the founders of the Gaelic League in Ireland.) The word "sith" refers to the "sidhe", the fairies.
     
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  25. ATMachine

    ATMachine Jedi Master star 4

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    Feb 27, 2007
    Wampa: from the 1930s Hollywood organization WAMPAS, "Western Association of Motion Picture AdvertiserS." This promotional agency was most famous for its annual "WAMPAS Baby Stars" list, featuring 13 young female actors it deemed likely to become major stars in the near future. (Insert your own joke about how "Hoth Needs Women" here. :p )

    According to The Making of ESB, an early name for the Wampa was Penocha. "Panocha" is a Spanish term for brown sugar, but in Mexican slang it's a vulgar word for "vagina".