Yoda, one of the greatest swordmasters of his time.

A swordmaster was a melee warrior who was proficient in the use of bladed weapons, such as vibroweapons or lightsabers. A swordmaster was constantly training to better his skills in combat. It took years of training and practice to become a swordmaster.[source?]

Jedi swordmasters[edit | edit source]

A master duelist of the Old Republic.

An example of a Jedi swordmaster was Mace Windu, considered as such because he was a master of all form of lightsaber combat and due to his mastery of Vaapad, which he created.[1] Prior to the Clone Wars, Windu was considered equal to Count Dooku and even close to Yoda himself in skill among the Jedi, and by the end of the war, even managed to disarm the likes of Darth Sidious.

Obi-Wan Kenobi was considered to be one of the greatest Jedi swordsmen of all time. A practitioner of Soresu, Kenobi was considered the greatest master of the form ever, just as Dooku was considered the greatest Makashi user ever. His staunch and impenetrable defense was enough for him to hold back the Djem So offensive barrage of his former apprentice Anakin Skywalker, who was arguably on par with the likes of Mace and Dooku, had earlier managed to overwhelm and kill both Cin Drallig and Dooku by himself. The newly appointed Sith lord, Darth Vader, became increasingly enraged by Kenobi's unbreakable defence and because of his arrogance, he made an error when trying to kill his former master, giving Kenobi the opening to strike him down.

Cin Drallig, Sora Bulq and Grand Master Yoda were also considered swordmasters. All three of them had mastered every known form of lightsaber combat and Sora was known for helping Mace Windu develop his Vaapad fighting style. Also, all three became lightsaber instructors to many younglings. Yoda was considered to be the greatest swordmaster of his time, alongside the likes of Mace Windu, Count Dooku, Darth Vader, and Darth Sidious.[2]

Sith swordmasters[edit | edit source]

One of the earliest known Sith to have achieved such mastery of lightsaber combat was Tulak Hord, who is noted by Kreia to have been the greatest lightsaber duelist of his time.[3]

Kreia demonstrated a great deal of practical knowledge of the various lightsaber forms through her instruction of the Jedi Exile during their journey. She was a practitioner of telekinetic lightsaber combat, and fought with it on a never-before-seen scale. She had the ability to fight with three lightsabers at once, holding each aloft with the Force, making them float and appear to fight with a will of their own.[3] It should be noted, however, that this tactic was an act of desperation, as Kreia had lost both of her hands in previous engagements.

Darth Tyranus, definitive master of Makashi.

Kas'im was a Dark Lord of the Sith during the New Sith Wars who was trained by the highly skilled Sith Lord Na'daz and said to be a prodigy, quickly grew to become more skilled than his master. After slaying Na'daz, Kas'im's swordsmanship was deemed to be unrivaled among the Sith and he earned the title of blademaster at the Sith Academy on Korriban. Kas'im had achieved full mastery over every form of lightsaber combat, and proved comfortably effective with any blade type, be it one single, one double, or two single blades. He was the one who trained Darth Bane in the art of lightsaber combat and although he was ultimately killed by the latter in single combat, he still proved to be the superior duelist and only through his inferior power in the Force did he lose his life against his much more powerful apprentice.[4]

Darth Tyranus was once a Jedi Master who fell to the dark side and became the Sith apprentice to Darth Sidious. Dooku was a consummate practitioner of Form II: Makashi. He was regarded by many as one of the greatest duelists of his time, on par with Mace Windu who himself was considered by many as second only to Master Yoda.[5]

Anakin Skywalker, later known as Darth Vader, was perhaps one of the three greatest swordmasters of all time, alongside Master Yoda and Darth Sidious. As both a Jedi and a Sith, Skywalker's preferred style was the highly aggressive Form V: Djem So, which involved using brute strength to batter down an opponent's defense. By the end of the Clone Wars, his lightsaber skill was so great that he was able to defeat and kill Count Dooku singlehandedly. During the massacre at the Jedi Temple, Vader's extraordinary skill allowed him to swiftly and effortlessly cut down every Jedi in his path, from young Padawans to highly experienced Jedi Masters. He even managed to defeat and kill Cin Drallig, who was considered to be one of the greatest Jedi swordmasters of all time, though it did take Vader considerable effort to do so. During his duel with Obi Wan Kenobi, Vader proved to be equally matched with him and was only defeated when he got blinded by rage and hubris, which allowed the calm and composed Kenobi to dismember him. After his reconstruction as a cyborg, Vader's lightsaber skill was hampered in some aspects while others were enhanced. On one hand, he lost a good bit of his speed and agility. On the other, his heavy prosthetics meant that his strikes had more force, which could stun or knock down his opponents. In the end, he remained skilled enough to kill many Jedi that survived the purge. He was able to duel evenly with his former apprentice Galen Marek, but the latter was able to subdue him with Force lightning.

Darth Sidious was the greatest and most skilled Sith swordmaster, as he has mastered all the seven lightsaber forms,[6] all their stances and techniques and is capable of using each form equally effective ambidextrously. Indeed, he had proven to be capable of competing with Mace Windu and even Grandmaster Yoda, although he was disarmed by the former, and on the verge of losing against the latter.

Appearances[edit | edit source]

Sources[edit | edit source]

Notes and references[edit | edit source]

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