What are the Sith anyway

Are they a race or just a collection of people who follow the dark side of the force?

A little from column ‘A’ and a little from column ‘B’.

Pretty much what Adam said - my extended universe trivia-fu is weak, but if I recall correctly, they were originally a race - whose teachings later inspired a “cult” of dark jedi.

I’m pretty sure the ‘Sith’ race has died out, too. Now the people who follow it are humans just following the ideals.

Humans and other aliens. Darth Maul was a Sith too.

:smack: Thanks for the correction!

A Sith is what is used to cut the long grass by hand.


Star Wars Trivia 101…please take a seat:

In the beginning the Jedi were formed (some 25,000 years or so before Star Wars takes place). The learned the powers of the Force and were aware of the dangers of the Dark Side and avoided it. As one might expect not everyone adhered to the prohibition of not using the Dark Side and of course there came the inevitable showdown. The Light Side Jedi won after a lengthy struggle and the Jedi exiled the remaining Dark Jedi out of the Empire figuring they’d just die off out there and not sully the Light Jedi’s hands.

The Dark Jedi, after wandering a bit, came upon a primitive civilization…the Sith (who looked like Darth Maul). The Sith viewed the arriving Dark Jedi as something like Gods and the Dark Jedi obligingly let them think that and enslaved the race. They noted that the Sith used a kind of Dark Magic not linkied to the Force. The Dark Jedi interbred with the Sith forming a new thing…the Sith Lords. Sith Lords were powerful in both the Dark Side of the Force as well as the Sith dark magic.

Over time the Sith Lords built their own empire and the Republic their ancestors had been exiled from became largely forgotten. The Republic itself never knew the Sith were even out there.

Eventually the Republic did stumble across the Sith and the Sith decided to attack the Republic but that is another story.

Couple nit-picks, Whack-a-Mole. Darth Maul was a Sith through training, not birth. His species is Zabrak, although Zabraks do not normally have the black-and-red face markings that Maul did. And I believe that the Dark Jedi enslaved the Sith race to become Sith Lords, not interbred with them. After the Sith became extinct, they held on to the title. Lastly, I’m pretty sure that the Sith race used the dark side of the Force, not “dark magic.”

So how did Darth Vader get to be a Sith Lord? He allegedly wasn’t the product of interbreeding of any sort, and there was no indication that he knew any other “dark magic” beyond what he learned by turning to the Dark Side.

Didn’t the Sith race become extinct because their misuse of the Force eventually lead to a basic genetic fault where they were terribly deformed and could no longer produce males? Thus, they were known as the “Twisted Sith-ters”.


  • slaps Ponder Stibbons with a cold fish *

…But I laughed.

A recent thread on the subject.

I deserved that.

[Guy Ledouche] Oooh, slap me again! [/Guy Ledouche]

Fair enough. I had read somewhere that Sith had black and red markings and that added to Obi Wan’s assessment that he had just run into a Sith after seeing him just once led me to assume Darth Maul was a Sith.

As for the interbreeding I am sure I read that somewhere but it may have been some fanfic that I conflated with Star Wars dogma. Same goes for the Dark Magic bit (although thinking on it further I am pretty sure the Sith had some unique access to the Dark Side previously unknown to the Dark Jedi and this combined with what the Dark Jedi already knew enhanced their powers).

The Sith were dead long before Anakin/Darth Vader came along. Sith Lords such as Darth Vader were a result of training and inclination. An analogy might be that at one point all (or most at least) Nazis were German. Pretend for a moment all Germans were killed in WWII yet some Nazis still crop up in other places even though they are not German. Ok…pushing the analogy a bit but hopefully you see what I mean (did I kill the thread by mentioning Nazis! :eek: ).

The Sith, by their natures, were competitve with each other and this was ultimately seen as a liability. Bad enough to fight your enemies when you have to worry just as much about your supposed allies. As a result there is only one Sith Lord in “present (movie)” time and he has an apprentice who will one day replace his master and take on a new apprentice himself. Although I never figured out why the Sith Lord would do this as ultimately it seemed the common mode for the apprentice to kill the master and assume his role. I didn’t think a Sith Lord’s committment to their credo would override their desire for self-preservation.

I think the history of the Sith was one of the most interesting things about the Star Wars universe – especially how they finally determined that the “one master, one apprentice” deal was the only way to stop killing each other, since they’re just so darn evil. So what does Genius George Lucas do? Why, he completely leaves all the most interesting details out of the actual movies, of course. As a result, anyone not familiar with the Expanded Universe really has no idea what the Sith are or why they want revenge. IIRC, the only background we get is Yoda’s cryptic “Two there always are” line in Episode I.

That’s my biggest beef with the otherwise satisfying **Episode III ** – lazy storytelling that requires the viewer to do outside research to fully understand what’s going on.

The black and red marking Darth Maul had were tattoos. Normally, Zabrak have human (or at least, human caucasian) skin tones. I don’t know what the significance of the tattoos was supposed to be, but they doubtlessly had some importance to the Sith. It’s entirely possible that they were meant to mimic the coloration of the original Sith species.

IIRC, the Sith species has an innate connection with the Dark Side of the Force, so it stands to reason that they would have abilities with it that the Dark Jedi, being relative new-comers to the Dark Side, would not possess. And the Sith themselves might have thought of what they did as magic, but the SW universe has been pretty consistent in connecting anything remotely supernatural back to the Force. Similarly, the idea of aliens interbreeding is something I’ve never seen raised in any of the EU stuff I’ve read. (Which is one of the reasons I’ve always preferred Star Wars to Trek.)