- "Slavery is the natural order of things. The weak deserve nothing more than to kneel before the strong, bound to our service."
- ―Queen Miraj Scintel
The Zygerrian Slave Empire was the monarchist corporatist empire of the Zygerrians species based on Zygerria that had holdings from Outer Rim to Wild Space. They had built a slaving enterprise and enslaved many beings in the galaxy for centuries before the Jedi Order fought and disbanded it, forcing slaving operations into the shadows of the underworld and beyond.
Prospering and decline
- "For thousands of years, Zygerria supplied slave labor to the galaxy. We prospered. Our customers prospered. Then the Jedi came."
- ―Darts D'Nar
The Zygerrian slavers successfully maintained their slave industry for thousands of years, which supplied slave labor to unscrupulous masters in the galaxy who became wealthy and powerful. At its height, the population of Zygerria had fortresses and cities built on top of the mesas scattered throughout the planet, using slave labor. However, it would fade from its glory after the Old Republic declared slavery illegal, the Jedi cracked down on their slaving operations and liberated countless beings from bondage. This action ended the slave trade the Zygerrians excelled in, pushing it into the shadows of the underworld, dismantling the empire, and confining what was left of its government to Zygerria, the civilization's homeworld.
Restoration and second decline
- "My queen is going to bring back the royal slave auction as in the days before the Jedi. Zygerria will be rich and powerful again."
- ―Darts D'Nar
At the height of the galaxy-wide Clone Wars, Queen Miraj Scintel of Zygerria, saw an opportunity to renew Zygerria's ancient slave empire and concocted a plot to gain the aid of the Confederacy of Independent Systems and its Head of State, Count Dooku. Dispatching the Zygerrian Commander Darts D'Nar to the Togruta colony world of Kiros, As D'Nar and his forces moved in to "occupy" the colony. Dooku has convinced the governor, Gupat Roshti, to be taken to a "safe haven." Dooku and Zygerrian Prime Minister Atai Molec then contacted him as he negotiated with Jedi General Obi-Wan Kenobi. Dooku then ordered D'Nar to bring Kenobi to him on his knees. Scintel went on to order him to return Kenobi with them to Zygerria so they could be sold at auction in hopes of expanding their slave empire. To this end they began an invasion of Kiros where the Confederacy supplied them with the captured Togruta population, whom the Zygerrians hoped to sell by bringing back the royal slave auction, a tradition of the old Empire.
However, their plans were foiled by the Jedi who located the missing colonists, and sent Jedi Knights Anakin Skywalker, Obi-Wan Kenobi, and Padawan Ahsoka Tano undercover to infiltrate the slavers' auction on Zygerria, where Skywalker and Tano posed as master and slave. Tano later threatened Scintel, but the queen had already outfitted the girl's neck with a shock collar, which she then remotely activated, electrocuting Tano unconscious. Skywalker and Kenobi were captured too. At this point, Scintel had started developing feelings for Skywalker and decided not to kill him which Molec saw as a weakness and invited Dooku to Zygerria to speak with the Queen about her defiance in not killing Skywalker. When the Queen again refused to kill him, Molec and Dooku decided to take matters into their own hands, seeing Scintel unfit to be queen. Molec then stood by as Dooku Force-choked her. However, she was saved by the timely arrival of Skywalker, who tried to convince Miraj Scintel that she too was a slave and pawn in the Separatists plot, something she realized to be true just before succumbing to her injuries and dying.
With the queen dead, Skywalker and Tano escaped from the Zygerrians and headed for Kadavo to rescue Kenobi, Rex, and the Togruta captives, who had been transferred to the Zygerrian slave processing facility on the planet. While en route, the two also called for reinforcements from the Republic.
Tano and her Master soon arrived on the planet onboard the YV-865 Aurore-class freighter Tecora and tried to break into the slave processing facility. When ordered to cease by the Zygerrian Keeper Agruss under threat that the slaves would be killed, Skywalker did not comply. Later when Galactic Republic reinforcements led by Admiral Barton Coburn and Jedi Master Plo Koon landed on Kadavo, they confronted the slavers, with the Wolfpack detachment attacking the facility with LAAT/i gunships and clone Z-95 starfighters. However, although they were initially halted by its ray shields, Skywalker was able to destroy the defensive towers. Meanwhile, Kenobi and Rex rebelled and killed Agruss who in a last act, tried to throw the Togruta hostages into the volcanic crevice below the facility, but, following a plan devised by Tano, the Republic forces evacuated everyone onto Admiral Coburn's Arquitens-class light cruiser Hand of Justice. The Republic strike team then destroyed the slave facility, with its destruction dealing a crippling blow to the Zygerrian slave trade.
- "With the meddling Republic gone, we can return to Kadavo and rebuild what was taken from us. Under this new empire, our operation will flourish once again."
Despite the defeat of the Separatist-aligned Zygerrian slave trade, a Zygerrian named Raney came to command a remnant of the empire; his forces were made up of a YV-865 Aurore-class freighter and an encampment–staffed by Zygerrian soldiers and his pet Brezak—in the ruins of Old Ord Mantell City on the planet of Ord Mantell. The Clone Wars would also come to an end, as the Confederacy collapsed after the deaths of its leaders, while the Republic was transformed into the Galactic Empire. Understanding that the laws concerning slavery could be different under a new regime, Raney and his troops took advantage of the Republic's fall, taking captives to restore the Zygerrian regime. Their prisoners included humans and Falleen, who were made into their slaves, and an adolescent rancor named Muchi, which had belonged to crime lord Jabba Desilijic Tiure.
Raney sought to return to Kadavo to makeup for the empire's defeat during the Clone Wars. Meanwhile, desperate for the return of his pet, Jabba had his majordomo, Bib Fortuna, hire the Trandoshan Cid to rescue the rancor; Cid hired a team of deserting clone commandos named Clone Force 99, otherwise called "the Bad Batch," to rescue Muchi from the slavers, albeit without informing them Muchi was a rancor. Ordering their youngest member—the enhanced clone Omega—to stay back at their ship, the Havoc Marauder, the commandos attempted to attack the encampment, only for the Brezak to attack CT-1409 "Echo," revealing the presence of the team. The commandos were captured to be made into slaves, and two Zygerrian guards searched through the Marauder but found nothing, as Omega remained hidden and GNK-series power droid Gonky pretended to simply be a box. Seeing that her friends were captured, Omega set out to rescue them, being caught only after she removed the lock on Muchi's cage.
Muchi rampaged throughout the encampment, allowing the Bad Batch to rescue the slaves. As Echo and Omega escorted the slaves to safety and while Muchi fought the Brezak, Clone Sergeant "Hunter" fought Raney, who attacked the commando with his electro-whip. Nevertheless, Hunter overcame the pain and quickly defeated the slaver. Afterward, Omega would claim a Zygerrian energy bow, and clone commando "Wrecker" began to fight Muchi in order to convince the rancor to follow them. With the Zygerrians defeated, the Bad Batch was able to escort Muchi back to Cid's Parlor, where she was reunited with Fortuna.
The Zygerrian Slave Empire was a monarchist corporatist empire, with a monarchy reigning over both the empire and the slaving enterprise as a whole. This effectively constituted what was essentially the governmental hierarchy and bureaucracy of the empire. Head of this was a prime minister who oversaw daily running of government as well safeguarding its interests. The prime minister had a further role by running the royal guards as captain of a group of sentinels sworn to protect Zygerria's Queen. These positions thereby collectively form into one common order, and controlling the state business enterprise, making the Empire wealthy and powerful but at the expense of others.
Diplomatically, the Zygerrians were highly corporate-minded who sought to maintain their Slave Empire at the expense of other civilizations, holding countless slaves across many worlds across the galaxy. This became a valuable part of Zygerrian culture and heritage.
Society and culture
- "How can a civilization this advanced still practice slavery?"
"It makes them wealthy and powerful at the expense of others."
- ―Ahsoka Tano and Anakin Skywalker, on the Zygerrians
Cunning, the Zygerrians were a humanoid feline species that were a warlike and selfish minded race who held—in great esteem that it was the natural order of life for the strong to dominate the weak, so slavery was normal for the species, and that all were bound to their service, to that they showed a large amount of prejudice towards aliens and humans alike.
During the time of Clone Wars, the restored Zygerrian regime was based on Zygerria as it was during the ancient era and came to control the Togruta colony world of Kiros in the Expansion Region, and Kadavo, located in Wild Space.
- Star Wars: The Clone Wars – "Kidnapped" (First mentioned)
- Star Wars: The Clone Wars – "Slaves of the Republic" (First appearance)
- Star Wars: The Clone Wars – "Escape from Kadavo"
- Star Wars: The Bad Batch – "Rampage" (Indirect mention only)
- Star Wars: Build the Millennium Falcon 91 (Guide to the Galaxy: Zygerria – World of Slavery)
- Star Wars: The Visual Encyclopedia
- Star Wars Encyclopedia of Starfighters and Other Vehicles
- Star Wars: Scum and Villainy: Case Files on the Galaxy's Most Notorious
- Star Wars - The Official Magazine 101 (Database: Before the dark times…)