The Darksaber has long been a mythic weapon in Mandalorian history. But what is it, and where does it come from? Let’s find out.
The Darksaber made us all gasp when Moff Gideon used it to cut his way out of a downed TIE Fighter at the end of Season 1. And it was his personal plaything throughout Season 2… but what exactly is the Darksaber?
The Darksaber is a relic from the heyday of the Old Republic. Back when Mandalorians had whole houses and planets and waged wars across the stars, instead of being confined to the secretive network they are today. And the Dark Saber is a symbol of how prevalent they were. It was the personal weapon of Tarre Vizsla, the first Mandalorian to become a Jedi.
Vizsla created the black-bladed lightsaber during his time in the Jedi temple, and it reflects his Mandalorian sensibilities. The blade itself is shorter than most lightsabers, and bears more resemblance to other, more traditional swords seen in the galaxy. It has a Mandalorian angular pommel and hand-guard, and it possessed a unique trait among lightsabers–the Darksaber’s crystal was a conduit for the Force, which allowed the blade to pulse with energy as its wielder’s emotions became charged.
Eventually Vizsla became the Manda’lor and for many years after his passing the Darksaber rested quiet and waiting in the temple. However, during the fall of the Old Republic, Mandalorians of House Vizsla raided the Jedi Temple and retook the relic, using it to secure their dominance of Mandalore as well as fend off and kill their Jedi opponents.
During the Clone Wars, Pre Vizsla, leader of the Death Watch, a splinter group of Mandalorians who claim to be the descendants of the true Mandalorians–took up the Dark Saber and fought Obi-Wan Kenobi during an attempted coup on Mandalore. Vizsla proved to be a persistent foe, and held on to the Darksaber until he was killed by Darth Maul, who bested Vizsla in single combat after a betrayal.
In Maul’s hands, the Darksaber was a vicious weapon indeed. He used it to kill Duchess Satine, fought against Darth Sidious (and lost), and fought off many Jedi Masters before the Darksaber came to rest on Dathomir during the Age of the Empire. Darth Maul kept it until it came into the possession of Sabine Wren, Ezra Bridger, and Kanan Jarrus who took the Darksaber away from Dathomir where it fell into the possession of the Emperor’s Hand. Sabine fought off the Hand and reclaimed the Darksaber, eventually passing it on to Bo-Katan Kryze who would lose it during the Empire’s Great Purge of the Mandalorians. There it found its way into the hands of Moff Gideon until he came into the path of Din Djarin.
And now the Darksaber has changed hands once more…