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Written by Dante Atkins
Published on January 29, 2001

Ancient Germanic Languages
in Star Wars

I am, of course, a Star Wars enthusiast, as well as a student of Classics and Germanic languages at UCLA. I wanted to provide some information that might not have been thought of before.

George Lucas apparently has a passion for using material from Germanic languages for Star Wars names. The most obvious one is Darth Vader, which, I believe, is Dutch for "Dark Father".

More recently, however, I saw that the alphabet used on the Naboo planet is called "Futhark". It can hardly be a coincidence that the runic alphabet, in which the earliest attested Germanic languages are written, is also called Futhark, because the first letters of the alphabet are F, U, Th, A, R, and K.

But I just had another revelation recently about the name Anakin. I just realized that in the dialect of Old High German spoken in Bavaria between 750 and 950 A.D., "Anakin" means "the beginning". I think that this also can hardly be coincidental, and the significance of these names would probably be of interest to all SW fans.

Feedback welcome

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