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This article is about the illicit narcotic. You may be looking for the food seasoning.

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Sansanna spice

Sansanna spice

"Spice, in any of its dozens of varieties, was the plague on the galaxy; a horribly addicting drug that its victims would lie, steal, assault, and murder for."
―Reflections of Eli Vanto[1]

Spice was the name for a type of illicit substance or substances in demand throughout the galaxy. Spice was mined at the spice mines of Kessel, where slaves such as captured Wookiees were worked to death turning mined medicinal spice mineral into a recreational drug. Spice mines could be found in several other planetary systems throughout the galaxy, including those of Ryloth and Naboo.[2] One variation of the narcotic known as ryll was mined on the planet Ryloth and had both scientific and recreational applications.[3] Sansanna spice was a type of spice that could be found throughout the galaxy.[4]


Spice Den SaV

Denizens of a spice den

"Many things can be made out of spice, and they're not all good."
Ahsoka Tano[5]

Padawan Reath Silas believed Captain Leox Gyasi spoke like how Grand Master Yoda would sound on spice.[6] The Pyke Syndicate used raw spice to create a powerful drug that Supreme Chancellor Finis Valorum sent Jedi Master Sifo-Dyas to investigate.[7]

In 22 BBY,[8] an assassination attempt against Senator Padmé Amidala was initially suspected to be the work of disgruntled spice miners on the moons of Naboo, though it later transpired that the assassin was in fact hired by Count Dooku, the leader of the Separatists.[9] The laws on Naboo regarding spice were based on its use to achieve a recreational high, rather than its ability to numb pain. Medical-grade spice assisted Kharl of the Torada Collective with pain management for a chronic health condition, but it required leaving the Republic world of Naboo for the Separatist-aligned Nooroyo.[10]

When the Ohnaka Gang captured Count Dooku, they demanded a million credits in spice delivered in an unarmed diplomatic ship in exchange for handing him over to the Jedi.[11]After Obi-Wan Kenobi and Anakin Skywalker were captured during a meeting to verify that the pirates did indeed have Dooku, the Gungan Jar Jar Binks and Senator Kharrus were sent with the demanded spice, though it was rendered irrelevant, as Dooku had already escaped by the time they arrived with it.[12]

In 20 BBY,[13] the pirate Hondo Ohnaka delivered missile launchers to the rebels on the planet Onderon after he was paid by the Jedi Knight Anakin Skywalker. Upon seeing the leader Steela Gerrera, he tried flirting with Gerrera, and he told her she could be his new favorite spice. Gerrera then denied his advances.[14]

Imperial Moff Delian Mors was a known user of spice, and Colonel Belkor Dray noted that she could operate well despite its effects.[3]

Ensign Baz was a known spice user and because of this was relieved from duty on the Carrion Spike by Moff Tarkin during a voyage to Coruscant shortly after an attack on Sentinel Base.[15]

Polstine spice Thrawn3

Moff Ghadi sprays Arihnda Pryce with polstine spice.

Imperial Moff Ghadi used a variant of spice known as polstine spice to blackmail Arihnda Pryce, then an aide to Lothal Senator Domus Renking. He described the spice as "highly prized, highly expensive, and highly illegal," and evidently even a light dusting on one's clothes was enough to guarantee a life sentence in prison.[1]

A pre-spice variant called scarn was the subject of a land dispute between the native Cyphari of the Afe clan led by Chief Joko and the human colonists led by Mayor Pord Benchel. The land dispute was engineered by human colonists Clay Tanoo, Lenora Scath, Brigte Polcery, and mercenary Nightswan as a means to gain access to the large scarn vein under the Afe Clan land. The conspiracy was quickly unraveled by Commander Thrawn and Ensign Eli Vanto, who brought a swift end to the land dispute by scorching and destroying the scarn vein with the help of TIE fighter pilot Lieutenant Gimm and Lieutenant Commander Osgoode.[1]

Luke Skywalker grew up believing his father Anakin was a navigator on a spice freighter. Han Solo ran afoul of Jabba the Hutt after ditching a shipment of spice to avoid trouble with the Empire, owing the Hutt a great deal of money as a result. When Imperial forces boarded the Tantive IV, C-3PO was worried that he and R2-D2 would be sent to the spice mines of Kessel.[16]

In 9 ABY, the late Jabba the Hutt's territory on Tatooine was promised to the Pyke Syndicate by the mayor of Mos Espa, Mok Shaiz.[17] The Pykes intended to use the planet to expand their spice trading business.[18] However, former bounty hunter Boba Fett had taken over Jabba's former criminal empire, and when he learned of the mayor's deal with the syndicate, he began preparing for a war with the Pykes.[19] After an intense battle in Mos Espa between Fett's forces and those of the Pyke Syndicate, the defeat caused so many losses to the Pykes that the Syndicate withdrew from incorporating Tatooine into its territory, leaving the world free of the spice trade.[20]

Behind the scenes[]

It has been posited that Frank Herbert's classic 1965 science fiction novel Dune had a heavy influence upon Star Wars. The drug known as "the spice" Melange plays a central role in the Duniverse.[21] Spice was first mentioned at the beginning of the original Star Wars with C-3PO's worry to R2-D2 that "We'll be sent to the Spice Mines of Kessel, smashed into who-knows-what!"

Spice was mentioned in the prequel trilogy film Attack of the Clones.[9]

A payment of spice was an important plot element in two installments of Star Wars: The Clone Wars. In canon, the details of what, exactly, spice was were kept vague until "The Lost One" episode of Star Wars: The Clone Wars, which identified it as being used to make a dangerous drug.

Reference material for Star Wars Rebels clearly establishes it as a dangerous drug. Numerous stories from the Expanded Universe continuity, later rebranded as Star Wars Legends, gave details on the spice trade and described it as consisting a number of different types of mind-altering drugs, such as ryll and glitterstim.


Props used for spice smokers and spice sticks in Obi-Wan Kenobi

The spice smokers seen in the Obi-Wan Kenobi television series were crafted in the same shape and style as Jabba the Hutt's hookah pipe,[22] and they were given a similar gold embellishment.[23] Propmaster Brad Elliott said the idea was that there is a pressurized canister that vents the spice when a button is pushed.[22] Props were also created for the spice sticks seen in the series.[23]



Notes and references[]

  1. 1.0 1.1 1.2 Thrawn
  2. Star Wars Rebels: The Visual Guide
  3. 3.0 3.1 Lords of the Sith
  4. TCW mini logo Star Wars: The Clone Wars — "Revival"
  5. TCW mini logo Star Wars: The Clone Wars — "Deal No Deal"
  6. The High Republic: Into the Dark
  7. TCW mini logo Star Wars: The Clone Wars — "The Lost One"
  8. Star Wars: Galactic Atlas
  9. 9.0 9.1 Star Wars: Episode II Attack of the Clones
  10. Queen's Hope
  11. TCW mini logo Star Wars: The Clone Wars — "Dooku Captured"
  12. TCW mini logo Star Wars: The Clone Wars — "The Gungan General"
  13. Star Wars: Galactic Atlas dates the partnership between Ahsoka Tano and the Onderon rebels, which was first depicted in "Front Runners," to 20 BBY. Star Wars: The Clone Wars: Character Encyclopedia - Join the Battle! dates the events of "The Gathering" to be 20 years before the events of Star Wars: Episode IV A New Hope, which corresponds to 20 BBY according to Star Wars: Galactic Atlas. As StarWars Star Wars: The Clone Wars Chronological Episode Order on StarWars.com (backup link) establishes that the events of "The Soft War" occurred between the events of Front Runners and The Gathering, it must occur in 20 BBY.
  14. TCW mini logo Star Wars: The Clone Wars — "The Soft War"
  15. Tarkin
  16. Star Wars: Episode IV A New Hope
  17. The Book of Boba Fett - "Chapter 3: The Streets of Mos Espa"
  18. The Book of Boba Fett - "Chapter 6: From the Desert Comes a Stranger"
  19. The Book of Boba Fett - "Chapter 3: The Streets of Mos Espa"
  20. The Book of Boba Fett - "Chapter 7: In the Name of Honor"
  21. Everything Star Wars Took From Dune by Lethbridge, Thomas on Screen Rant (October 20, 2021): "However, perhaps because of its shared genre, the book's most obvious descendent is probably the Star Wars universe. In fact, in the 2003 Herbert biography Dreamer of Dune, written by his son Brian, it is claimed that "(Herbert) & the other science fiction writers who thought they saw their work in Lucas's movie formed a loose organization that my father called, with his tongue firmly placed in his cheek, the We're Too Big to Sue George Lucas Society." This demonstrates the clear parallels that Herbert himself saw between his work and the Star Wars movies. Upon closer inspection, it's clear that he may have had a claim. Here is everything that Star Wars took from Dune. (...) One of the most important plot points in Dune is the so-called spice melange, a mind-altering substance that allows for interstellar travel and that's only known source – at least in the first book – is the planet Arrakis. Possession of the spice influences everything in the world of Dune and is one of the factors that shapes the Harkonnen/Atreides feud at the center of the narrative. Although the spice of Star Wars is not as significant to the overall plot as the spice of Arrakis, George Lucas' films do feature so-called spice mines on the planet Kessel, highlighting a clear connection between the two works." (archived from the original on October 29, 2021)
  22. 22.0 22.1 StarWars Inside the Lucasfilm Archive: A Brewing Rebellion in the Obi-Wan Kenobi Limited Series on StarWars.com (backup link)
  23. 23.0 23.1 This Week in Star Wars logo This Week! in Star Wars San Diego Comic Con Plans, Obi-Wan Kenobi Props, and More! on the official Star Wars YouTube channel (backup link)  (Posted on StarWars.com)

External links[]