With the upcoming drama series The Mandalorian set to premiere on the forthcoming Disney streaming service, the interest in the nomadic people from every corner of the galaxy is set to exponentially increase. Since Boba Fett and Jango Fett graced cinema screens, fans have been captivated by the warrior culture of the Mandalorians.
Early Mandalorian Culture
The Mandalorians have a rich culture that represents multiple species and genders with varying attitudes all bound by a common culture. Mandalorian culture, in their earliest years, revolved around constant battle, and war was considered their source of honor and pride.
Mandalorians were led by a leader known as “Mand’alor” (which translates to “Sole Leader”) who was a combination of general, warlord, and king all rolled into one. The role was non-hereditary and when one Mandalore stepped down or died only a Mandalorian who had risen to exemplify the meritocratic ideal of the society could claim the title.
Early in the history of the Mandalorians, they frequently allied with the Sith and most notably with the ancient Sith Lord Exar Kun. The Mandalorians often had a deep mistrust of the Jedi Order but were not, however, above partnering with Jedi when their interests aligned.
These partnerships with major groups and organizations in the galaxy made many Mandalorians turn to bounty hunting and mercenary work, often becoming highly sought after for their determination and skilled combat prowess. Many Mandalorians sided with the Alliance to Restore the Republic (Rebel Alliance) following the Battle of Yavin.
Central Tenets of Mandalorian Culture
The central tenets of Mandalorian culture were known as the “Resol’nare”, or the “Six Actions”. These tenets defined what it meant to be Mandalorian and consisted of:
1. Wearing Armor
2. Speaking the Mandalorian language
3. Being capable of defending oneself and one’s family
4. Contributing to the welfare of one’s clan
5. Rallying to Mandalore if called upon
6. Raising one’s children in the ways and culture of the Mandalorians
The Mandalorians were a nomadic people and held a long tradition of conquering worlds in order to adopt them as new homes. These allowed the Mandalorians to remain decentralized and prevented them from being wiped out completely by an opposing force.
There was, however, an original homeworld known also as Mandalore which was the fifth planet in the Mandalore system, located in the Outer Rim territories. In the Mandalorian language, the planet was known as “Manda’yaim” and was named for Mandalore the First who originally conquered the planet.
Perhaps the most recognizable aspect of the Mandalorians is their armor which was known as “beskar’gam” or “iron skin”. In a group made up of many different species, Mandalorian armor was meant as a sign of the shared culture of the Mandalorians.
Mandalorians would often use certain paint schemes to represent their state of mind or a personal mission such as black for a desire for justice or sand-gold to represent a quest for revenge. Blue and green were, however, the most common color choices when it came to Mandalorian armor.