Star Wars: What Is the Sith Triumvirate & Is It Canon?

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The Sith Order has had its fair share of powerful individuals throughout history. However, some of the most powerful group of Sith haven’t made it to the big screen yet – the Sith Triumvirate. Usually, the Sith followed the Rule of Two, but the Triumvirate didn’t follow the Sith Order’s regulations. So, what is the Sith Triumvirate, and does it belong to the current canon?

The Sith Triumvirate was an alliance between three vastly powerful Dark Lords: Darth Traya, Darth Nihilus, and Darth Sion, the latter two being Darth Traya’s apprentices at first. Only one of them – Darth Nihilus – has been confirmed to be a canon character, but the Triumvirate’s canon status is currently unknown/unconfirmed.

The story of the Sith Triumvirate basically starts and ends in betrayal, as Darth Traya actually started as a Jedi Master before falling to the Dark Side after feeling betrayed by her kin. And, as it usually goes with the Sith, an ultimate betrayal ended the reign of the Sith Triumvirate, too. If you want to hear all about it, keep reading this article.

Who are the members of the Sith Triumvirate?

The Sith Triumvirate actually had many members in terms of Sith assassins and associates. However, the three leaders that formed the Triumvirate were Darth Traya, Darth Nihilus, and Darth Sion. It actually all started with a Jedi Master named Kreia.

Kreia was intelligent, cunning, and philosophical as a Jedi, being one of Revan’s teachers – who later on became a powerful, historic Sith Lord. When Revan and Malak fell to the Dark Side and attacked the Mandalorians, many other Jedi students were corrupted and joined him.

Darth Traya

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Kreia was unjustly accused and blamed, stating that her teaching was the reason why Revan fell. She was banished from the Jedi Order. Trying to find a new purpose and new answers to her beliefs, she landed on Malachor V.

It’s a dead planet that was very powerful in the Dark Side – it was a wound in the very fabric of the Force. As she approached Sith ruins on the planet, Kreia, too, fell to the Dark Side and became Darth Traya, aka the Lord of Betrayal – as her kin betrayed her.

She became a headmistress of the Trayus Academy – a school for those who are willing to fulfill the purpose of the Sith – to eradicate the Jedi completely.


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Darth Nihilus & Darth Sion

Darth Traya found not one but two students whom she took as her own apprentices, who would later become an extremely powerful pair of Sith Lords that ruled beside her.

One of them was Darth Nihilus, aka the Lord of Hunger. We never got too much of a backstory on Nihilus, but it is believed that he was, in fact, one of the Jedi who followed Revan and fell to the Dark Side as a result.

He sought to study under Darth Traya on Malachor V and became an incredibly powerful, destructive Sith Lord. He had the power to drain the Force and even create wounds in the very fabric of the Force by his mere existence.

He needed to keep draining others of their life Force in order to satisfy his hunger. Unlike other Sith, Darth Nihilus never really sought to rule. Instead, he wanted to destroy all life, everywhere, to satisfy his insatiable hunger.

sith triumvirate darth sion

The final piece of the Sith Triumvirate was Darth Sion, aka the Lord of Pain. Darth Sion, for years, survived under the wreckage of Revan’s Empire. His body was shattered and destroyed countless times, making Darth Sion a mere patchwork of his original self.

However, his pure strength, force of will, and rage were what kept Sion alive, and he eventually managed to escape the years of constant pain, agony, and suffering and ventured onto Malachor V.

Just like Nihilus, Darth Sion was chosen as Darth Traya’s second apprentice, as she noted his strength, brutality, and power. However, Darth Sion lacked knowledge or any will to learn, which soon made him despise Darth Traya and vice-versa. Traya was philosophical, even wise, which made her resent Darth Sion’s approach.


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The Betrayal of Darth Traya

Nihilus and Sion completed their training and became co-rulers of a new Empire with their former teacher, Darth Traya. The Sith Triumvirate was a powerful entity that sought to corrupt Jedi to the Dark Side and create an army that could easily rule the galaxy. 

Sion, however, quickly grew tired of not confronting the Jedi and the Republic directly. On the other hand, Darth Nihilus’ hunger grew stronger, as Traya’s strategy never ‘fed’ his need to drain the Force out of other beings.

Naturally, as it usually goes with the Sith, Nihilus and Sion conspired to betray Darth Traya, which they did one day at the Trayus Core while Traya was meditating. They brutally attacked her, subdued her, and used Sever Force to literally detach her connection to the Force.

The Lord of Betrayal was left powerless, exiled, and betrayed again by both the Jedi and the Sith. Later, called Kreia again, found another Jedi Exile, and guided her in a new direction against Nihilus and Sion.

Meanwhile, Nihilus and Sion got complete control over the remaining Sith, but they had different philosophies that eventually saw them go their separate ways. Both still believed that the Jedi needed to be eradicated, but they took different approaches to achieving that before being defeated.

Is The Sith Triumvirate canon?

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The canon status of the Sith Triumvirate as such is yet unconfirmed. The Triumvirate initially belonged to the Star Wars Legends, and currently, only Darth Nihilus was also confirmed as a canon character.

Darth Traya and Darth Sion are still only present in Legends, but that could potentially change in the future, as it did for Nihilus and many other Legends characters over the years.


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What is the Rule of Two in the Sith Triumvirate?

The Sith Order usually followed the Rule of Two, which stated that, at any time, there can only be one Sith Lord and one apprentice – the one with power and knowledge and the one seeking it.

The principle was designed to create fewer individuals who are more powerful rather than many flawed individuals. However, the Sith Triumvirate clearly did not follow the same Rule of Two, seeing that Darth Traya had two apprentices herself.

As I’ve mentioned, many things about the Triumvirate didn’t really correlate with common Sith rules, as they essentially created their own path.

There’s debate on whether the Rule of Two was ultimately beneficial or detrimental to the Sith Empire, but it undeniably worked in terms of creating incredibly powerful individuals. Perhaps if Darth Traya followed the Rule of Two and had only one apprentice, things would turn out much differently for her and the Galaxy.

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