Master and Apprentice Relationships in the Star Wars Universe

On the set of Star Wars: Episode IV
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Knowledge and training in the Force passes down through master/apprentice relationships. These include the formal master/Padawan relationships common in the Prequel era and the informal training relationships common in Luke's New Jedi Order. The relationships between masters and apprentices helps reveal how Star Wars characters are connected and how they became the Jedi or Sith that they are.

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Dark Jedi, Sith Master, and Jedi Master Relationships

Palpatine (Darth Sidious) was the Sith or Dark Jedi Master for apprentices Darth Maul, Dount Dooku (Darth Tyranus) and Anakin Skywalker (Darth Vader). Finally, Luke was briefly Emperor Palpatine's apprentice in the comic "Dark Empire," which featured Palpatine returning to life in a cloned body.

Jedi Masters and Apprentices

  • Qui-Gon Jinn was the master for apprentices Obi-Wan Kenobi and Yoda. A deleted scene in "Revenge of the Sith" (and the "Revenge of the Sith" novelization) explains how Qui-Gon Jinn appeared to Yoda as a Force ghost and became his new master. This post-mortem training from Qui-Gon is how Yoda and Obi-Wan learned to become Force ghosts themselves.
  • Yoda was the Jedi Master for apprentices Count Dooku and Luke Skywalker.
  • Obi-Wan Kenobi was the Jedi Master for Anakin Skywalker and Luke Skywalker.
  • Princess Leia was not trained as a Jedi in the Star Wars films, since she only found out about her heritage in "Return of the Jedi." Luke provided some training for her while she continued in her role as a politician, but it was a while before she began training more intensely and officially joined the Jedi Order.

Charting the rest of the master/apprentice relationships in the Expanded Universe, however, quickly becomes problematic.

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Confusions About Masters and Apprentices

The sheer number of masters and apprentices for some characters begins to make the chart unwieldy beyond the original trilogy. The major offenders are Darth Vader and Luke Skywalker, since Luke trained many Jedi in his Jedi Academy and Vader trained a number of Dark Jedi in the service of the Emperor.

However, the most interesting thing is the way master/apprentice relationships intersect over multiple generations and across Sith/Jedi lines. Yoda, for example, trained Luke Skywalker; he also trained Ikrit, who trained Anakin Solo, who was also trained by Luke Skywalker. Vergere trained Jacen Solo as a Jedi (at least an apparent one), but also trained Lumiya, Jacen's Sith master.

Adding one more degree to these relationships, unfortunately, adds a host of new problems. Master/apprentice relationships cross generations of thousands of years; in particular, Exar Kun ties together Jedi and Sith from the Old Republic, when he was alive, with some of Luke's students, whom he trained as a spirit. 

Master/apprentice relationships were primarily taken from Wookieepedia's character infoboxes.