- "I can't abide those Jawas! Disgusting creatures!"
Biology and appearance
What Jawas hid underneath their heavy robes was subject to much speculation from the colonists who settled on Tatooine, with rumors claiming they were giant rodents or devolved humans. Although Jawas were typically small, measuring only one meter, some of them were significantly taller than that. One of those abnormally gangly Jawas was almost as tall as a 3PO-series protocol droid, a model of protocol droid measuring 1.71 meters.
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 had usually had five or six hems in their robes.
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
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.
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.
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. However, the Ugnaught Kuiil was able to understand and negotiate in their language.
Jawas traveled through the desert and transported their droids in their sandcrawler transports. 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. Jawas used ion blasters to stun droids.
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.
- ―A Jawa
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.
Following the Battle of the Great Pit of Carkoon, a band of Jawas scavenged a suit of corroded Mandalorian armor from the desert. Later, the group 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. 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 and returning to town.
Jawas in the galaxy
- "You want a cup of Jawa Juice?"
- ―FLO to Obi-Wan Kenobi
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. Some could be found on the planet Nevarro, the world where the Tribe took refuge, 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 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, The Mandalorian as well as his friend, the Ugnaught Kuiil, struck a deal with the Jawas: he would obtain a mudhorn egg in exchange for his parts. The Mandalorian was successful in gaining the egg, and the Jawas returned his parts.
Behind the scenes
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.
- Disney Infinity 3.0
- LEGO Star Wars: The Freemaker Adventures – "Crossing Paths" (Mentioned only)
- LEGO Star Wars: The Freemaker Adventures – "Race on Tatooine"
- LEGO Star Wars: The Freemaker Adventures – "Duel of Destiny"
- LEGO Star Wars: The Freemaker Adventures – "Home One"
- LEGO Star Wars: Droid Tales – "Mission to Mos Eisley"
- LEGO Star Wars: The Force Awakens
- LEGO Star Wars: All-Stars – "The Prisoner of Tatooine" (In flashback(s))
- LEGO Star Wars: The Skywalker Saga
- The LEGO Star Wars Holiday Special
Notes and references
- Star Wars: The Force Awakens: Head-to-Head
- Star Wars: The Clone Wars – "Bounty"
- Star Wars: Episode IV A New Hope
- Star Wars: Absolutely Everything You Need to Know
- The Mandalorian – "Chapter 2: The Child"
- The Mandalorian – "Chapter 1: The Mandalorian"
- The Star Wars Book
- Star Wars: The Visual Encyclopedia
- Ultimate Factivity Collection: Star Wars
- "Stories in the Sand"—From a Certain Point of View
- The Mandalorian – "Chapter 9: The Marshal"
- The Mandalorian – "Chapter 3: The Sin"
- Star Wars: From Concept to Screen to Collectible