Cookies help us deliver our Services. By using our Services, you agree to our use of cookies. Learn More.

Star Wars: How Many Jedi Died In Order 66?

One of the darkest moments in "Star Wars" is Order 66, the command given to the clone armies of the Galactic Republic instructing them to kill their Jedi commanders. As Chancellor Palpatine (Ian McDiarmid) cemented his control over the newly formed Empire in "Star Wars: Revenge of the Sith," he finally revealed his ace in the hole: secret programming in the clone troopers of the Grand Army of the Republic that enabled them to turn on their commanding officers. But just how many Jedi died as a result?

On the fateful night of Palpatine's attempted arrest by Mace Windu (Samuel L. Jackson) and several other Jedi Masters, the Sith Lord activated Order 66, declaring Jedi as traitors subject to summary execution. As Jedi were slaughtered across the galaxy by their own troops, his new apprentice Anakin Skywalker (Hayden Christensen) led the elite 501st Legion in a raid on the Jedi Temple and killed its inhabitants, including children, in his first act as Darth Vader.

In the days and years that followed, Jedi not killed in the immediate aftermath of Order 66 were systematically hunted down and executed by Vader's ferocious Grand Inquisitors, as depicted in "Obi-Wan Kenobi," the video game "Star Wars Jedi: Fallen Order," and elsewhere.

While a handful of Jedi, including Yoda, Obi-Wan, and Ahsoka did survive, Order 66 eradicated the Jedi as an institution and drove survivors underground. It's tricky to estimate how many Jedi existed prior. Still, some rough math along with a bit of information from the canon tells us that about 10,000 Jedi existed prior to Order 66, almost all of whom died.

Approximately 10,000 Jedi fell under Order 66

Conflicting estimates of total Jedi numbers prior to Order 66 appear across multiple "Star Wars" novels, games, and television shows, but in the wake of Disney's acquisition of the franchise, many are no longer canon. That means the clearest, most canonical figure we can rely on comes from a Season 1 episode of "Star Wars Rebels."

In the episode "Path of the Jedi," Kanan Jarrus, a Jedi who survived Order 66, tells his apprentice Ezra Bridger that during the halcyon days of the Republic, there had been a sum total of about 10,000 Jedi Knights. Given that across all of "Star Wars" media we've seen only a few important Jedi who survived Order 66, it's safe to say that just under 10,000 were killed as a result of the regime. In a galaxy as densely populated as it is in "Star Wars," that isn't a lot of manpower, which helps make sense of the fact that clone troopers were able to slaughter powerful Jedi en masse. They overpowered their force-wielding commanders with sheer numbers.

However, Kanan's use of the term "Jedi Knights" complicates the matter. Jedi ascend ranks from Padawan to Knight, and a select few progress to become Masters. Anakin Skywalker was famously allowed to sit on the Jedi Council without being granted the rank of Master, for example. So it is possible that Kanan was only accounting for Knights, but not Padawans, Masters, or other niche titles Jedi could acquire. Even so, Knights were the most common Jedi and comprised the bulk of the Order, meaning that even if Kanan's figure of 10,000 only includes them, it wouldn't be far off from the actual figure.