Star Wars: 10 Secrets Behind the Jedi Symbol

The Jedi Order has a long and intricate history, but here are 10 facts about their symbol that casual fans may not have known.

Symbols have always been important in Star Wars. With such a vast universe populated by so many different entities and species, symbols help to designate the different ideological factions. Battles between the Rebel Alliance and The Empire, as well as the Sith and the Jedi,  are helpfully differentiated by the use of distinct symbology. In the case of the symbol of the Jedi Order, it may be the most mysterious of all.

The Jedi Knights assisted the Galactic Republic in ensuring that peace and justice proliferated the galaxy, and their symbol acted as a beacon of freedom and hope for all its inhabitants. The pair of wings encircling the lightsaber, found on the ships and armor of the Grand Army of the Republic, as well as in the pages of the sacred texts of the Jedi Order, convey how prolific the symbol was, and in what instances it was used. Here are several other intriguing secrets about the symbol of the Jedi.

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10 It's the Symbol of the Jedi Order

The Jedi have been the guardians of peace and justice in the galaxy for thousands of years, their diplomacy and fighting skills serving the Galactic Republic, and the Old Republic before it, for generations of their Order. Their use and knowledge of the Force, the mystic energy that binds the universe together, have allowed them to stand against the forces of evil when the rest of the galaxy cowered in fear. The symbol of the Jedi has appeared on crests, their starfighters, and in sacred Jedi texts for millennia, serving as a bright light in the darkness and a beacon of hope for all those that follow the light side of the Force.

9 It's the Logo for Jedi-created Technology

Though the most recognizable item in a Jedi’s arsenal is their lightsaber, it wasn’t the only piece of technology that they created. Jedi have been known to design weaponry besides lightsabers (though they experiment a great deal with their construction), such as ranged weapon for a variety of combat scenarios.

Armorsmiths in the Jedi Temple were known to weave durasteel fibers into the robes of Jedi Knights, enabling them to resist damage and some blaster fire, while Jedi Knights such as Anakin Skywalker with an aptitude for mechanics built components for starships, droids, and even holocrons that hold a wealth of Jedi knowledge. The symbol could occasionally be found on their handiwork.

8 Part of it Could Be Seen in the Old Republic Logo

The Old Republic and the Galactic Republic were two bodies of galactic government that existed consecutively. The Old Republic lasted for 25,000 years prior to the Galactic Republic, which stood for a thousand years prior to being reformed into the first Galactic Empire by then Chancellor Sheev Palpatine. Their symbols look vastly different, but the symbol for the Old Republic incorporated some of the Jedi symbol in its crest. The symbol depicts the two familiar wings of the Jedi symbol, but instead of a lightsaber in the center, there exists what looks like a tower and a star. The crest could be seen on the old Corellian ship The Crucible in the Clone Wars animated series.

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7 It First Appeared On-screen in the Clone Wars Series

There’s been some debate about when the Jedi symbol first made its on-screen appearance, but most are relatively sure it happened during the time of the prequel trilogy. Though all the Jedi fighting as part of the Grand Army of the Republic didn’t wear battle armor in Attack of the Clones and Revenge of the Sith, Obi-Wan Kenobi and his apprentice, Anakin Skywalker, can be seen wearing it in Star Wars: The Clone Wars.

As far back as 2008, the Jedi symbol appeared on the pauldrons and bracers of various Jedi fighters in the animated series, usually always a red insignia of the wings and lightsaber silhouetted against a white armor background.

6 It Appears in The Last Jedi

After finding the reclusive Jedi Master Luke Skywalker on the remote planet of Ahch-To in The Force Awakens, young scavenger Rey begins her Jedi training. With his begrudging guidance, she may be able to better understand the strong connection to the Force that has been dormant in her for years.

Ahch-To is the location of the first Jedi Temple where Luke Skywalker came to contemplate the meaning of the Force and the Jedi’s connection to it after failing to prevent his nephew from turning to the Dark Side. The symbol of the first Jedi Order appears in the sacred Jedi texts that he pours over; two blue wings encircling a gold lightsaber.

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5 It's Said to be Two Wings Encircling a Lightsaber

While there’s been some debate on the iconography inherent to the Jedi symbol, its design is rooted in the teachings of the ascetic Dai Bendu monks, whose “Jed’aii” concepts were the teachings on which the foundation of the Jedi Order was based. The symbol can be seen in the pages of their sacred texts on the remote planet of Ahch-To, where the first Jedi Temple was built.

The general consensus is that the wings encircle some sort of glistening star, a star which has a single long point that makes it resemble the glow of the famous Jedi weapon, a lightsaber. This symbology has been worked into various imagery for Star Wars over the years, including the concept art for The Last Jedi and the original Star Wars poster from 1977.

4 It Resembled the Jedi Temple on Coruscant

The Jedi Temple on the urban planet Coruscant, sometimes referred to as the Palace of the Jedi, was built 5,000 years before the Galactic Civil War atop a sacred Force nexus that had been corrupted into a Sith shrine. Following the Hundred Year Darkness and the Great Hyperspace War, the Jedi decided to construct their base of operations on the homeworld of the Republic, gathering the Jedi Council at the top of its northwestern tower.

The construction of the Jedi Temple on Coruscant resembles, at certain angles an in silhouette, the wings encircling the lightsaber of the Jedi symbol. The Jedi Temple guards also wear a version of the Jedi Symbol, but the point of the lightsaber is higher, reflecting the spire of the temple itself.

3 It's Occasionally Mistaken For the Starbird

The Jedi symbol is sometimes erroneously referred to as the “Starbird”, which is, in fact, the symbol of the Rebel Alliance. It first appeared in Star Wars canon on the series Star Wars: Rebels, drawn on Imperial property as graffiti bt Sabine Wren, a Mandalorian that didn’t believe in the Empire’s ideology.

The wings of the Jedi symbol are said to have evolved into the “wings” of the Starbird, which is thought to resemble a phoenix, representing The Rebellion that rose from the ashes of the destroyed Republic to challenge the Empire’s dominion. It makes a certain sort of sense since the Old Republic utilized the “wings” of the Jedi symbol as well.

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2 It Was Seen in the Blaze of the Force Tree on Ahch-To

Aside from the first Jedi Temple, the remote planet of Ahch-To is home to a Force tree, grown from one of two seedlings rescued from an Imperial research lab by Luke Skywalker and Poe Dameron’s mother in the comic Shattered Empire. One of the seeds was planted near Poe’s home, and the other went with Luke.

When an older, cynical Luke decides he’s had enough of the Jedi Order, he goes to burn the Force tree down with all of the sacred Jedi texts inside its hollow. When he can’t bring himself to do it his old Master, Yoda, strikes the tree with a bolt of lightning. Its blaze resembles the wings and lightsaber of the Jedi symbol. Side by side with the concept art it’s even more noticeable.

1 It's One of Two Symbols Associated With the Jedi Order

For thousands of years, Jedi Knights assisted the Old Republic in protecting the galaxy from the forces of evil. Though they were by and large diplomats, emissaries, and scholars, they used the Force to combat the Sith—and other dangerous entities when called upon. The first symbol of the Jedi Order, which was adopted in part by the Old Republic, was the wings and lightsaber crest.

The second symbol associated with the Jedi Order and its governing body was based on the Dai Bendu, an order of monks that the Jedi based certain teachings on. That symbol was the Galactic Republic crest or cog, an eight-spoked sigil that later became the symbol to represent the Galactic Empire.

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