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For other uses, see Jawa (disambiguation).

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―A Jawa[6]

Jawas were a sentient species of meter-tall furry humanoids native to the Outer Rim desert world of Tatooine. Jawas who migrated from Tatooine were referred to as Offworld Jawas.

Biology and appearance[]

"I can't abide those Jawas! Disgusting creatures!"
Jumbo Jawas

Although Jawas usually measured one meter, some were significantly taller.

What Jawas hid underneath their heavy robes was subject to much speculation from the colonists who settled on Tatooine,[2] with rumors claiming they were giant rodents or devolved humans.[7][10] Although Jawas were typically small, measuring only one meter,[2] some of them were significantly taller than that. One of those abnormally gangly Jawas was almost as tall as a 3PO-series protocol droid,[5] a model of protocol droid measuring 1.71 meters.[11]

When Jawas began to walk, they were given moisture-regulated and insulated robes that they would wear their whole life. Their robes were originally hemmed to the armpit. As they mature, the hem is lowered to cover their height. Most Jawas measured their height by the amount of hems their robes had had. An average adult Jawa usually had five or six hems in their robes.[12]

According to the gangster Adwin Charu, Jawas had a musky, animal odor which he likened to a fraternity of wet rats.[13]

According to Peli Motto, Jawas were quite furry.[14]

Society and culture[]

"My ship has been destroyed. I'm trapped here."
"Stripped. Not destroyed. The Jawas steal. They don't destroy."
"Stolen or destroyed, makes no difference to me."
―Djarin and Kuiil — (audio) Listen (file info)[6]
Jawa scavengers-AA

A group of Jawas scavenging a power droid

Jawas were passionate scavengers, combing the deserts of Tatooine for droids or scraps which they would capture and sell to the local residents, forming a codependent circle of trade. However, they had a reputation for swindling, selling hastily refurbished equipment and faulty droids. Thus, moisture farmers were wary of their goods, but they often purchased them due to being hard-pressed to find a better selection in their remote locations.[1]

Jawas were found lurking at podracing tracks in order to haul away smoking debris from crashed Podracers. Jawas were usually first on the scene of a crashed starship, as Anakin Skywalker discovered when he crash-landed the Twilight.[15]

A Jawa could often speak both their native Jawaese—which utilized scent as well as spoken words to convey meaning, thus making it impossible for outsiders to understand—and their simpler Jawa Trade Talk, allowing them to communicate more easily with other species.[7] However, the Ugnaught Kuiil was able to understand and negotiate in their language.[6]


Jawas used sandcrawlers as mobile bases for scavenging as well as for protection from Tusken Raiders and sand storms.

Jawas traveled through the desert and transported their droids in their sandcrawler transports.[1] Defunct mining companies on Tatooine had abandoned these vehicles in the desert once their projects failed, allowing the Jawas to use them as mobile bases.[7] Jawas used ion blasters to stun droids.[5]

Jawas had a tentative peaceful relationship with the Tusken Raiders, or "Sand People," an aggressive species also native to Tatooine. However, the Jawas preferred to avoid the Sand People when possible due to their unpredictable nature. They also feared the Krayt dragon, and getting caught in a sandstorm was just as dangerous.[1][7]

Jawas present on Arvala-7 had a love for mudhorn eggs, going so far as to trade a large pile of parts for a single egg.[6]


"The Jawas had a turbonic venturi assimilator from a Galactic Republic-era starfighter?"
"Well, they didn't have it. They got it."
"From where?"
"Tatooine is a garden of many bounties."
―Din Djarin and Peli Motto — (audio) Listen (file info)[14]

In 232 BBY,[16] during the heights of the High Republic Era, a band of Jawas on Tatooine accidentally kidnapped the RJ unit RJ-83 from the young pilot Nash Durango and Jedi Initiate Kai Brightstar, thinking the two parties agreed on a trade. The pair caught up with the Jawas which caused a bit of trouble until their shared knowledge of Mycho Zala, a prospector operating on Tatooine. Upon meeting Zala, the prospector helped resolve their initial misunderstanding, returning the kidnapped droid back to Durango and Brightstar.[17]

One band of Jawas was responsible for locating and reuniting C-3PO and R2-D2 after their escape pod crash-landed on Tatooine. The band subsequently sold the droids to Luke Skywalker's uncle, Owen Lars. The entire clan was later interrogated and then slaughtered by stormtroopers who had come looking for the droids. The stormtroopers attempted to make the carnage look like the work of Sand People, but Obi-Wan Kenobi was able to see through the ruse when he and Luke Skywalker came across the corpses. Kenobi later burned the bodies out of respect.[5]


Jawas steal Boba Fett's armor, as he is lying on the desert ground

Following the Battle of the Great Pit of Carkoon, a band of Jawas that had yellow eyes found Boba Fett lying on the desert ground, weakened after he escaped from a sarlacc. The Jawas stripped his suit of corroded Mandalorian armor. Fett awakened, but one of the Jawas knocked him unconscious with a blaster. The Jawas took his armor and returned to their sandcrawler.[18][13] Later, shortly after the destruction of the second Death Star, the armor was in the possession of a group of Jawas that had red eyes. They stumbled upon Cobb Vanth, a man who had recently fled the town of Mos Pelgo. Providing Vanth with water, the Jawas quickly discovered the man's only possession: a camtono filled with silicax oxalate crystals. The Jawas desperately wanted the crystals, offering Vanth weapons, an astromech droid, and other items before Vanth pointed to the Mandalorian armor.[19] Just then, the gangster Adwin Charu traveled to the Jawas' sandcrawler to barter for weapons. However, when he discovered the armor, he was keen on acquiring it. Vanth refused to let Charu take it, shooting the man before taking the armor[13] and returning to town.[19]

Jawas in the galaxy[]

"You want a cup of Jawa Juice?"
FLO, to Obi-Wan Kenobi[20]

An Offworld Jawa

A popular galactic drink known as Jawa Juice existed and was served in locations such as Dex's Diner on Coruscant. However, it was not made from or by Jawas.[7]

Jawas were present on other worlds in the galaxy, referred to as Offworld Jawas. Ships traveling to and from Tatooine led to some of them migrating from their homeworld and making their way to other planets. They continued their old habits on the new planets, still obsessed with scavenging technology where possible.[21] Some could be found on the planet Nevarro, the world where the Tribe took refuge,[22] and at least one clan possessing a sandcrawler lived on Arvala-7. This clan was encountered by the Mandalorian bounty hunter known as Din Djarin, who had traveled to Arvala-7 while on a job. Upon returning to his ship, the Razor Crest, he found that the Jawas had mostly dismantled it. In an attempt to get his parts back, Djarin pursued the Jawa sandcrawler and killed several Jawas before he was stunned by their ion blasters. Eventually, with the help of his friend, the Ugnaught Kuiil, Djarin struck a deal with the Jawas, agreeing to obtain a mudhorn egg for them in exchange for his parts. He was successful in gaining the egg, and the Jawas returned his parts.[6]

Behind the scenes[]

Jawas first appeared in Star Wars: Episode IV A New Hope, the first installment of the Star Wars original trilogy.[5]

George Lucas originally created a prototype of a jawa that resembled a rat, though this was scrapped after he felt that it was too theatrical. The Jawas in A New Hope were played by twelve local children including Gary Kurtz's daughter, Tiffany L. Kurtz, who portrayed the Jawa Dathcha. Their faces were covered by black stocking masks and wired on eye bulbs.[23]

No canonical source has revealed what a Jawa looks like under the hood. In behind-the-scenes shots from Return of the Jedi, the Jawas have squarish heads covered in black cloth with large yellow eyes that appear mechanical. However, this is a costume and so may not represent their canonical appearance. The original Star Wars novelization implies a possible familial relationship between Jawas and Tusken Raiders. It also describes Jawas as rodent-like and compares them to de-evolved Humans, though these could be mere metaphors.

According to Stephen J. Sansweet's book Star Wars: From Concept to Screen to Collectible, the Jawas were the centerpiece in one of the strangest copyright infringement cases involving Star Wars. In 1978, small hooded creatures with glowing eyes that Neil Young called "Roadeyes" began accompanying the rocker on stage during a concert tour, in a tour film, and on the cover of the album Rust Never Sleeps. The case was settled out of court.[24]


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Non-canon appearances[]


Non-canon sources[]

Notes and references[]

  1. 1.0 1.1 1.2 1.3 1.4 StarWars Jawas in the Encyclopedia (content now obsolete; backup link)
  2. 2.0 2.1 2.2 2.3 StarWars-DatabankII Jawa in the Databank (backup link)
  3. Star Wars: The Force Awakens: Head-to-Head
  4. TCW mini logo Star Wars: The Clone Wars — "Bounty"
  5. 5.0 5.1 5.2 5.3 5.4 5.5 5.6 5.7 Star Wars: Episode IV A New Hope
  6. 6.0 6.1 6.2 6.3 6.4 6.5 The-Mandalorian-logo The Mandalorian — "Chapter 2: The Child"
  7. 7.0 7.1 7.2 7.3 7.4 7.5 7.6 7.7 Star Wars: Absolutely Everything You Need to Know
  8. Star Wars: The Visual Encyclopedia
  9. The-Mandalorian-logo The Mandalorian — "Chapter 1: The Mandalorian"
  10. Ultimate Factivity Collection: Star Wars
  11. StarWars-DatabankII C-3PO (See-Threepio) in the Databank (backup link)
  12. "Stories in the Sand" — From a Certain Point of View
  13. 13.0 13.1 13.2 Aftermath
  14. 14.0 14.1 The Book of Boba Fett logo The Book of Boba Fett — "Chapter 5: Return of the Mandalorian"
  15. StarWars Jawa Biography Gallery on StarWars.com (backup link)
  16. GettyImages-Logo 4.11.23 SW Celeb Tues Wrap Up Press Blast by The Walt Disney Studios on Getty Images (April 11, 2023) (backup link) places Star Wars: Young Jedi Adventures 200 years before the events of Star Wars: Episode I The Phantom Menace, which corresponds to 232 BBY according to Star Wars: Timelines.
  17. Star Wars Young Jedi Adventures template logo Star Wars: Young Jedi Adventures — "Kai's Bad Day"
  18. The Book of Boba Fett logo The Book of Boba Fett — "Chapter 1: Stranger in a Strange Land"
  19. 19.0 19.1 The-Mandalorian-logo The Mandalorian — "Chapter 9: The Marshal"
  20. Star Wars: Episode II Attack of the Clones
  21. HasbroInverted Star Wars: The Black Series (Pack: Offworld Jawa) (backup link)
  22. The-Mandalorian-logo The Mandalorian — "Chapter 3: The Sin"
  23. StarWars Much to Learn You Still Have: 7 Things You Might Not Know About Jawas on StarWars.com (backup link)
  24. Star Wars: From Concept to Screen to Collectible

External links[]