Lucasfilm Ltd. and Lucas Licensing established eight publishing eras for Star Wars material within the Star Wars Legends continuity. These eras, including the Infinities era, divided the Star Wars chronology into eras, each with their own name.
These particular Era symbols appeared on nearly all novels, young reader books, role-playing games, guidebooks, comics and audio books published after October 26, 2000 and before the advent of the new canon continuity established on April 25, 2014. These allowed fans to determine at a glance where a particular work fell in Star Wars history. As the series continued, some eras were relabeled and others added. For example, the Sith era was eventually relabeled as the Old Republic era, and the Before the Republic era was added with the advent of the series Star Wars: Dawn of the Jedi.
Eras of galactic history
This era explores the earliest days of the Jedi Order, as the Force is explored on Tython in the Deep Core. Space travel is limited, though the ruthless Rakatan Infinite Empire spans the reaches of the known worlds, using Dark Force techniques to power technology far in advance their subjugated neighbors.
Though this era spans some 12,000 years, the only tale currently chronicled in this era takes place in 25,793 BBY. Earlier stories would have appeared in the Alien Exodus trilogy had the focus of the project not shifted away from the Star Wars Expanded Universe.
Old Republic era (25,000 – 1000 BBY)
This era explores the earliest days of the Galactic Republic, its protectors, the Jedi Order, and its enemies, the Sith. Beginning with the formation of the Republic, it continues with the rises of multiple Sith Empires and ends with the defeat of the Brotherhood of Darkness at the Seventh Battle of Ruusan and the rebirth of the Republic in the Ruusan Reformation.
Though this era spans twenty-four thousand years of history, the earliest tale of this era takes place only as far back as 5000 BBY. Earlier Republic millennia are chronicled only as historical lore and legend.
Rise of the Empire era/Clone Wars era (1000 – 0 BBY)
In this era, the Republic is seemingly in a golden age. However, the Sith, under Darth Bane, survived to plot against the Republic and the Jedi in the shadows. After centuries of Sith scheming, Palpatine, alias Darth Sidious, Dark Lord of the Sith, sets events in motion which lead to the Clone Wars, a conflict that tears apart the Galaxy.
At the end of the Clone Wars, Palpatine's master plan leads to the corruption of Anakin Skywalker into Darth Vader, the Great Jedi Purge, and the formation of the Galactic Empire. Yet, there is still hope for the Galaxy, as the early exploits of heroes such as Han Solo and Lando Calrissian show.
Rebellion era (0 – 5 ABY)
As an Alliance to Restore the Republic forms, a young man named Luke Skywalker discovers his destiny: to become a Jedi Knight, like his father. Trained by Obi-Wan Kenobi and later Yoda, the last of the Republic's Jedi Masters, he rescues Princess Leia, joins the Rebel Alliance, and destroys the Empire's mighty Death Star at the Battle of Yavin.
Many other heroes fight along side him in the pivotal battles of the Galactic Civil War, from the Battle of Yavin, to the Retreat from Hoth, to the pivotal Battle of Endor, where the Emperor, though not the entire Empire, is defeated. The Rebellion declares a New Republic, defeating such threats as Ssi-ruuk, the Nagai, the Tof, and resurgent Imperial warlords.
Because of how long it has been around, this era has more works (if all unlisted works are counted) than any other era.
New Republic era (5 – 25 ABY)
During this time period, a New Republic sweeps the Galaxy, liberating countless worlds, including the Galactic capital world, Coruscant. Before the New Republic can call itself safe, however, it must deal with a series of Imperial leaders, including Ysanne Isard, Warlord Zsinj, Grand Admiral Thrawn, Admiral Daala, and even the resurrected Emperor Palpatine himself. Aside from the remnants of the Empire, the Republic must deal with many external and internal threats during this period.
As the Republic tries to bring peace to a fractious Galaxy, Luke Skywalker becomes a Jedi Master, and sets about establishing a New Jedi Order. He also meets the former Imperial assassin, Mara Jade, whom he eventually marries. His friend Han Solo and his sister Princess Leia also marry and have three children: Jaina, Jacen, and Anakin. After the Galactic Civil War finally ends in the Bastion Accords, Luke's niece and nephews become Jedi apprentices themselves.
New Jedi Order era (25 – 37 ABY)
During this era, an extra-galactic species known as the Yuuzhan Vong invades the Galaxy. The New Republic, the New Jedi Order, the Imperial Remnant, and the Chiss Ascendancy are all faced with these seemingly implacable invaders. Whole planets are laid to waste, and many heroes die. In the end, a Galactic Federation of Free Alliances is formed, uniting the ashes of the Republic with the Galaxy's other leading factions. After five years of war, the Galactic Alliance finally achieves victory.
Only a few years later, however, the Alliance is faced with another crisis. The ancient Killik civilization resurfaces, under the influence of the Dark Nest. These servants of the Dark side of the Force foment a crisis within the Alliance, which escalates into a brief but intense war.
Legacy era (37 ABY—)
Though this era has a clearly-defined beginning, it has no end. It begins in 40 ABY, with the Galactic Alliance and the New Jedi Order dealing with the legacy of years of war and peace. Another crisis threatens to split the Alliance, as allies from previous wars find themselves on opposite sides during the Second Galactic Civil War. Meanwhile, Jacen Solo finds himself drawn to a mysterious figure: possibly the same agent of evil who figures in Luke Skywalker's visions. He becomes the Dark Lord of the Sith, Darth Caedus, and brings peace to the galaxy, uniting everyone against him. After his death, the Alliance is split in two, and the Empire takes over once again.
Nearly one hundred years later, a new Sith Order and a new Galactic Empire dominate the Galaxy. Cade Skywalker, the last remaining heir to the Skywalker legacy, may be the only one who can save the Jedi Order.
This era is for stories released under the official Star Wars banner which are not meant to be considered part of the Star Wars canon. Some of these stories are alternate versions of stories covered elsewhere in the continuity, but with events which cannot be reconciled with other stories. Some are explicitly "alternate universe" tales, which branch off from existing storylines when a crucial event turns out differently. Others are pure parodies.