The species to which the legendary Jedi Grand Master Yoda belonged was ancient and shrouded in mystery. Members of this species were rarely seen anywhere in the galaxy. The few members of this species seen in the galaxy were all Force-sensitive, and the species' homeworld and name were unknown.
Biology and appearance
- "Wait. They said fifty years old."
"Species age differently. Perhaps it could live many centuries."
- ―Din Djarin and IG-11 upon discovering an infant of the species
The species had two known sexes: male and female. Members of the species were small in size, roughly comparable to that of a human child, with green skin, large eyes and long pointed ears. Their three-fingered hands ended in claws. The species were suggested to mostly have a carnivorous diet, with a preference towards catching and devouring live amphibians whole. Their ears were expressive, curling and unfurling in accordance with their emotions.
Members of the species were capable of growing thin hair, with shades varying from auburn to white being documented. The species had a very long life expectancy, spanning at least several centuries; Yoda lived nearly a thousand years before dying of old age.  and they aged very slowly, remaining in infancy for at least fifty standard years. Even at this stage of life, certain Force-sensitive individuals of this species could use Force powers such as telekinesis and Force healing; they were also capable of complex thought processes, and could understand speech and communicate via the Force at this age. Despite their slow aging for the first five decades of life, members of the species reached maturity by their hundredth year, as exemplified by the Jedi Yoda, who began training other Jedi when he was about one hundred years old.
Society and culture
Due to the rarity of the species in the wider galaxy, little was known about them except that the species was ancient and shrouded in mystery. Members of the species were capable of speaking Galactic Basic, although Yoda used a distinctive and archaic syntax.
Yoda, Grand Master of the Jedi
Yoda, the last Grand Master of the Jedi Order prior to its fall at the end of the Clone Wars, was a member of the species born around the standard year 896 BBY. He began training other Jedi when he was around a century old. Over the centuries, Yoda, who never revealed what his homeworld was, trained many Jedi before eventually becoming the Grand Master of the entire order. One of his final Padawans was Dooku, a human male who eventually left the Order and fell to the dark side, becoming the Sith Lord Darth Tyranus, who served as Darth Sidious' right-hand man in the orchestration of the Clone Wars. When Sidious, publicly Supreme Chancellor Palpatine, revealed himself and issued Order 66, which killed most Jedi across the galaxy, Yoda was one of the few survivors, returning to Coruscant and duelling the self-declared Galactic Emperor; however, Yoda was forced to retreat. Yoda subsequently went into hiding on the remote planet Dagobah, eventually training one final student, Luke Skywalker, during the Galactic Civil War to overthrow Sidious' Galactic Empire. Yoda died on Dagobah shortly before the Battle of Endor, afterwards becoming a Force spirit.
Yaddle of the Jedi Council
During the same period of time, one other member of the species, Yaddle, was also a member of the Jedi Order. Born in 509 BBY, she was a Jedi Master and member of the Jedi High Council during the Invasion of Naboo. She trained at least one Padawan, Oppo Rancisis. After the Battle of Naboo, Yaddle decided to take a less active role in Jedi affairs and stepped down from the Council.
Grogu, the Mandalorian foundling
Around fifty years before 9 ABY, a member of the species eventually known as Grogu was born. By four years after the end of the Galactic Civil War, Grogu was kept in a compound on the planet Arvala-7, guarded by a faction of Nikto mercenaries against various bounty hunters sent after him. Eventually, Din Djarin and IG-11 defeated the mercenaries, with Djarin leaving with Grogu after destroying the assassin droid, whose instructions had been to kill the infant while Djarin's had been to take it alive if possible. Although he initially handed Grogu over to his client, Djarin had a change of heart and chose to return and rescue it, placing both him and Grogu in the crosshairs of an Imperial remnant headed by the war criminal Moff Gideon, who wanted Grogu for unknown purposes. After prevailing in an initial battle against Gideon's forces, Djarin, now acting as Grogu's father by Mandalorian Creed, was charged with protecting Grogu until he could get him to either his own people or a Jedi.
After many adventures, Din Djarin finally found Ahsoka Tano, a former Jedi Padawan. However, Ahsoka refused to train Grogu because of his feelings of anger, and fear, and his attachment to Djarin. Ahsoka then told Djarin to go to an ancient Jedi Temple on Tython. On Tython, Grogu reached out with the force while members of Gideon's forces attempted to capture him. He was eventually captured by Gideon's Dark Troopers, and brought aboard his light cruiser. He was later rescued by Djarin and the timely intervention of Luke Skywalker.
Yoda's species in the galaxy
The species, its origins shrouded in mystery, was rarely seen, with only a few members known to the wider galaxy. All known members of the species active in the galaxy were Force users and affiliated with the Jedi.
Behind the scenes
- "So he's a mystery character. He's a magical character. He has no background. He comes and he goes. He's the subversive secret mysterious stranger that enters the film and then exits at the end."
- ―George Lucas, about Yoda
In the documentary "From Puppets to Pixels," available on the DVD bonus disc of Star Wars: Episode II Attack of the Clones, Lucas joked that Yoda was "the illegitimate child of Kermit the Frog and Miss Piggy."
In The Empire Strikes Back: So You Want to Be a Jedi?, a canon retelling of Star Wars: Episode V The Empire Strikes Back written by Adam Gidwitz, Luke Skywalker calls Yoda a "little swamp frog."
Notes and references
- Star Wars: Episode V The Empire Strikes Back
- Star Wars: Episode III Revenge of the Sith
- Dark Disciple
- The Mandalorian – "Chapter 1: The Mandalorian"
- Star Wars: Absolutely Everything You Need to Know
- The Mandalorian – "Chapter 7: The Reckoning"
- The Mandalorian – "Chapter 2: The Child"
- The Mandalorian – "Chapter 13: The Jedi"
- Star Wars: The Complete Visual Dictionary, New Edition
- Star Wars: Card Trader
- In Star Wars: Episode V Return of the Jedi, set in 4 ABY by Star Wars: Galactic Atlas, Yoda says he is 900 years old. Therefore, basic math indicates he must have been born around 896 BBY.
- Dooku: Jedi Lost
- Star Wars: Episode V Return of the Jedi
- According to Star Wars Character Encyclopedia: Updated and Expanded, Yaddle was 477 years old at the time of the invasion of Naboo. Since Star Wars: Galactic Atlas dates that to 32 BBY, Yaddle was born in 509 BBY.
- Star Wars: Episode I The Phantom Menace
- Star Wars Character Encyclopedia: Updated and Expanded
- Ultimate Star Wars
- The Mandalorian – "Chapter 1: The Mandalorian" indicates that Grogu was 50 years old by the time of 9 ABY, which The Mandalorian takes place in. Using simple math, we can deduce that Grogu was born 41 years before the Battle of Yavin, which was depicted in Star Wars Episode IV A New Hope.
- The Mandalorian – "Chapter 3: The Sin"
- The Mandalorian – "Chapter 8: Redemption"
- The Mandalorian – "Chapter 14: The Tragedy"
- The Mandalorian – "Chapter 16: The Rescue"
- Unscripted with Hayden Christensen and George Lucas
- DVD bonus disc of Star Wars: Episode II Attack of the Clones: "From Puppets to Pixels"
- The Empire Strikes Back: So You Want to Be a Jedi?