Darth Bane
Real-world information
Portrayed by

Mark Hamill[1]

First appearance

Star Wars: The Clone Wars[1]

Fictional information



Dark Lord of the Sith[2]



"The Sith killed each other, victims of their own greed. But from the ashes of destruction, I was the last survivor. I chose to pass my knowledge onto only one. I created a legacy so resilient, that now you come before me."
―Darth Bane to Yoda[src]

Darth Bane is a minor antagonist in the Star Wars Saga. He was created by George Lucas as part of the backstory of the prequel trilogy. After the character appeared in many Expanded Universe stories, which are now non-canon, an illusion of Darth Bane appeared before Yoda in the series finale of Star Wars: The Clone Wars. In The Clone Wars, Bane was voiced by Mark Hamill, who portrays Luke Skywalker.

In-universe, Darth Bane is an ancient Sith Lord who created the Rule of Two, which mandates that there be only two Sith, a master and an apprentice, at any given time. His Sith philosophy lasted until the time of the films, with the Sith of the prequel trilogy and original trilogy following his Rule of Two.

Canon biographyEdit

Pre-The Clone WarsEdit

Darth Bane was an ancient Sith Lord who lived one thousand years prior to the Clone Wars. In his time, Bane came to believe that the old ways of the Sith were leading them to ruin. Sith would turn against one another, destroying their plans in a vain quest for power over other Sith. This destructive behavior ultimately led to the Sith being defeated by the Jedi. Bane became the sole survivor of the Sith defeat.[2]

To help future Sith survive, Bane created a new tradition: the Rule of Two. With this new rule, there could only be two Sith at a given time: a master to embody power, and an apprentice to crave it. The new Sith ended up operating in secret and began working to bring down the Republic and the Jedi from the shadows. Rather than forming an army, the Sith would rise to galactic dominance through manipulation and subterfuge.[2]

At some point, the Jedi discovered the Rule of Two and defeated Bane. In their hubris, the Jedi believed that Bane's defeat meant the extinction of the Sith, but his plans continued through his apprentice. After his death, Bane's remains were placed into a sarcophagus in the Valley of the Dark Lords on Moraband, making Bane the last Sith Lord to be buried on the ancient Sith homeworld.[2]

The Clone WarsEdit

"An illusion. Real, you are not."

During the Clone Wars, Jedi Master Yoda, the leader of the Jedi Council, began hearing the voice of the dead Jedi Master Qui-Gon Jinn. Yoda learned that Qui-Gon, prior to his death, had begun learning how to achieve immortality by retaining his consciousness after his death. Because Qui-Gon died before completing his training, it fell to Yoda to continue on Qui-Gon's path. This led Yoda on a quest to achieve the perspective and teachings necessary to begin that training.[1]


The specter of Darth Bane towers over Yoda.

Yoda's quest led him to Moraband, where he entered the tomb of Darth Bane. There, the fiery specter of the ancient Sith Lord appeared before him and attempted to convince Yoda to become his apprentice and learn the ways of the dark side. Yoda refused, saying that Darth Bane was dead and had nothing to offer him. This banished the specter back into the sarcophagus, and Yoda continued on. The Jedi Master ultimately learned the secret to eternal life, something the Sith—including Darth Bane—were incapable of.[1]


"Once more the Sith will rule the galaxy..."
Emperor Palpatine[src]

In the years after his death, the Sith continued the quest for revenge that began with Darth Bane, working in secret as they plotted their return to the galactic forefront.[2] The end of the Clone Wars marked the culmination of the plans those plans. Palpatine, the Supreme Chancellor of the Galactic Republic, was secretly Darth Sidious, the Dark Lord of the Sith. He had engineered the Clone Wars in order to gain more and more power over the Republic and to destroy the Jedi. By the war's end, Palpatine declared himself Emperor and reformed the Republic into the first Galactic Empire. Along with it, he issued Order 66, a command to the clone army of the Republic to kill all of the Jedi as traitors. Palpatine also turned Anakin Skywalker, a famous Jedi Knight and the Chosen One of Jedi prophecy, to the dark side, with Skywalker becoming Darth Vader. A millennia after their defeat, the Sith achieved their revenge.[3]

The Sith victory was short-lived, however. Nearly twenty-five years after the Sith returned to power, Darth Vader was redeemed by his son, Luke Skywalker, and killed Emperor Palpatine. Vader died as a result of rising up against the Emperor, bringing an end to the Rule of Two and the legacy of Darth Bane.[4]

Behind the scenesEdit

Darth Bane was created by George Lucas as part of the backstory of the prequel trilogy, and was first referenced in the novelization of Star Wars Episode I: The Phantom Menace.[5] Bane went on to be expanded in a number of reference books and comic books, before finally becoming the subject of his own trilogy of books: Path of Destruction, Rule of Two, and Dynasty of Evil. All of these stories, which are Expanded Universe and therefore not official canon, fleshed out how Darth Bane created the Rule of Two and the Sith Order that existed in the prequels.

Darth Bane's first on-screen and official canon appearance was in "Sacrifice," the series finale of Star Wars: The Clone Wars. In the episode, Yoda travels to Moraband, the Sith homeworld, and sees an illusion of Darth Bane that tempts Yoda to join him. In this appearance, Bane was voiced by Mark Hamill, who plays Luke Skywalker.[1]

Canon appearancesEdit

Notes and referencesEdit

External linksEdit

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