Imperial Profile: The Grand Admirals

While my admiration of Grand Admiral Thrawn has always been a center-piece of my Star Wars love, I have never-the-less also gravitated to other high ranking officials within the Galactic Empire, finding their stories equally fascinating. As part of my ongoing “Imperial Profile” series I wanted to offer a small look at not just Thrawn but ALL of the Grand Admirals who have been in service to the Empire. What follows is just a small sampling of information about each Grand Admiral in the Star Wars Expanded Universe AND the Disney Canon, information which I have spliced together from a variety of sources for quick and easy access. If you have any questions or thoughts about these individuals, the rank of Grand Admiral, the sources I have used, or anything else, I hope you will leave a comment!!!


Background on the Grand Admirals

Introduced for the first time in Timothy Zahn’s infamous novel Heir to the Empire, the rank of Grand Admiral was utilized over and over again by Expanded Universe authors, writers, and creators. While Grand Admiral Thrawn was the very first Grand Admiral introduced into Star Wars, he was chronologically the last individual to be promoted to the esteemed rank. According to The Essential Guide to Warfare (written by Jason Fry), Emperor Palpatine elevated twelve individuals to the new rank of Grand Admiral in 2 BBY during the New Year Fete Week. Promoted for various reasons – acumen as battlefield strategists, commitment to the New Order, role in research and development – the twelve Grand Admirals were adorned in white dress uniforms with signature gold epaulets (The Essential Guide to Warfare, pg. 168-169).

While twelve were initially promoted, a thirteenth- Mitth’raw’nuruodo (aka Thrawn) – would be named as Grand Admiral Zaarin’s replacement following Zaarin’s attempted coup. The last individual promoted to the rank, Thrawn would also be the last Grand Admiral in-service to the Empire until his death in 8 ABY.


Martio Batch

First MentionThe Essential Chronology (Kevin J. Anderson and Daniel Wallace)

Homeworld – Unknown

Species – Human

Notable Achievement(s) -Developed the TIE Phantom. Destruction of Aeten II using the Tarkin superweapon.

Death – Sometime between 4 ABY and 6 ABY


Nial Declann

First MentionWho’s Who: Imperial Grand Admirals (Star Wars Insider 66)

First AppearanceStar Wars Galaxies: Jump to Lightspeed (LucasArts)

Homeworld – Unknown

Species – Human (Force-sensitive)

Notable Achievement(s) – Taken to Dromund Kaas and trained in the ways of the dark side of the Force by the Prophets of the Dark Side.

Death – 4 ABY during the Battle of Endor (stationed on Death Star II)


Octavian Grant

First MentionThe Essential Chronology (Kevin J. Anderson)

Homeworld – Unknown (planet in the Tapani Sector)

Species – Human

Notable Achievement(s) – Last known Grand Admiral (before Thrawn re-emerged from the Unknown Regions); Defected to New Republic in 6 ABY

Death – Unknown (survived past 10 ABY)


Josef Grunger

First MentionThe Glove of Darth Vader (Paul and Hollace Davids)

Homeworld – Unknown

Species – Human

Notable Achievement(s) – Seizure of planet Gargon following the Battle of Endor. One of the first Imperial warlords, declaring himself the new Emperor.

Death – 5 ABY at the Battle of Tralus (fighting Grand Admiral Pitta’s forces)


Ishin-ll-Rax

First MentionThe Essential Chronology (Kevin J. Anderson and Daniel Wallace)

First Appearance – Republic HoloNet News Special Inaugural Edition 16:5:241 (Star Wars Insider 84)

Homeworld – Unknown

Species – Human

Notable Achievement(s) – Led the Commission for the Preservation of the New Order (COMPNOR).

Death – Committed suicide in 4 ABY by crashing his Star Destroyer in the Denarii Nova


Afsheen Makati

First MentionVision of the Future (Timothy Zahn)

Homeworld – Unknown

Species – Human

Notable Achievement(s) – Hunted down and killed the false Prophet “Kadaan.”

Death – sometime around 5 ABY while leading the defense of the Corporate Sector


Danetta Pitta

First MentionThe Essential Chronology (Kevin J. Anderson and Daniel Wallace)

Homeworld – Unknown

Species – Near-Human

Notable Achievements(s) – Notable xenophobe and defender of human culture;  Commanded three dungeon ships, taking them through the Outer Rim to depopulate and sterilize non-Human worlds; established himself as the protector of the Corellian sector following the Battle of Endor

Death – 5 ABY at the Battle of Tralus (fighting Grand Admiral Grunger’s forces)


Peccati Syn 

First MentionThe Essential Chronology (Kevin J. Anderson and Daniel Wallace); indirect appearance in Star Wars: Galactic Battlegrounds

Homeworld – Taris

Species – Human

Notable Achievement(s) – Devout follower of the “Sacred Way” as a youth. Remained loyal to Coruscant following the Battle of Endor. Convert to the Church of the Dark Side.

Death – 5 ABY leading the defense of Kashyyyk against New Republic forces


Miltin Takel

First MentionStar Wars Adventure Journal 5

First AppearanceStar Wars Adventure Journal 10

Homeworld – Gargon

Species – Human

Notable Achievement(s) – Victorious at the Siege of Trasemene in 2 ABY. Takel was one of the few individuals who knew of Thrawn’s promotion to Grand Admiral. Narrowly survived the Battle of Endor.

Death – Executed on Kessel by Grand Moff Hissa in 5 ABY


Osvald Teshik

First MentionThe Far Orbit Project (Timothy S. O’Brien)

Homeworld – Anaxes (spent youth on Kallistas)

Species – Human (cyborg following the Battle of Andalia)

Notable Achievement(s) – Survived his “execution” when he was ordered by Emperor Palpatine to engage the Hapan Royal Navy, with insufficient forces, at the Battle of Andalia; Continued the fight against the Rebels at the Battle of Endor even after the remnants of the Imperial Fleet fled into hyperspace. His Star Destroyer disabled, Teshik was captured and executed by the New Republic.

Death – 4 ABY by the New Republic for war crimes


Ruufan Tigellinus

First AppearanceStar Wars Adventure Journal 8

Homeworld – Unknown

Species – Human

Notable Achievement(s) – Commanded Imperial forces fighting pirates in the Outer Rim. Member of the Order of the Canted Circle. Eventually became a Grand Moff before his death.

Death – 5 ABY


Demetrius Zaarin

First Mention/AppearanceStar Wars: TIE Fighter (LucasArts)

Homeworld – Coruscant

Species – Human

Notable Achievement(s) – Head of Imperial Starfighter research and development;. Designed the TIE Advanced and TIE Defender. Attempted a coup against Emperor Palpatine in 3 ABY but was defeated by Vice Admiral Thrawn.

Death – 4 ABY in the Unknown Regions (aboard the CR90 Corvette Vorknkx)


Mitth’raw’nuruodo (Thrawn)

First Mention/AppearanceHeir to the Empire (Timothy Zahn)

Homeworld – Csilla

Species – Chiss

Notable Achievement(s) – Destroyed the Republic’s Outbound Flight in 27 BBY. Founded the “Empire of the Hand” in the Unknown Regions. As a Vice Admiral, Thrawn hunted down and defeated the traitor Demetrius Zaarin. Promoted to the rank of Grand Admiral as Zaarin’s replacement. Defeated the Warlord Nuso Esva at the Battle of Quethold. Launched a crushing campaign against the New Republic in 8 ABY.

Death – 9 ABY during the Battle of Bilbringi (assassinated by his bodyguard Rukh while aboard the ISD Chimaera)

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Disney Canon: Alternative Universe

In 2014, with the decision by Disney/Lucasfilm to create a new Star Wars canon, the Expanded Universe was set aside under the term “Legends.” Confined under this new label, the Grand Admirals of the Empire and their stories may have been set aside but the rank of Grand Admiral has, never-the-less, found its way into the ranks of the Empire. This time, rather than twelve Grand Admirals being present, only two Grand Admirals have, so far, been incorporated into the new Alternative Universe. One is a familiar face from the Expanded Universe, the other is a bold, new character with an enticing story and growing fan base.


Mitth’raw’nuruodo (Thrawn)

First AppearanceStar Wars Rebels: Steps into Shadows

Homeworld – Csilla

Species – Chiss

Notable Achievement(s) – Pacification of the Rebel insurgency on Batonn. As a result of his victory, promoted to the new rank of Grand Admiral by Emperor Palpatine. Given command of the Seventh Fleet. Successful blockade and destruction of “Chopper Base” in the Atollon System. Important 

Death – Unknown (disappeared in 1 BBY during the Liberation of Lothal) 


Rae Sloane

First AppearanceA New Dawn (John Jackson Miller)

Homeworld – Ganthel

Species – Human

Notable Achievement(s) – As an Imperial cadet, Sloane foiled a plan to assassinate Emperor Palpatine and Darth Vader. Foiled a plot by Count Vidian to destroy Cynda, the moon orbiting the planet Gorse. Taking command after the death of Admiral Piett, Sloane coordinated the Imperial retreat from the Battle of Endor. Promoted to Grand Admiral by Fleet Admiral Gallius Rax, making her the “leader” of the Imperial Navy. Helped to establish the First Order.

Death – Unknown (disappeared with Imperial fleet in 5 ABY following the Battle of Jakku, still alive ten years before the attack on Tuanul village)

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11 comments

    1. Hahahaha 5 ABY was a terrible year for a lot of them! All of the post-Endor infighting took many of them down. Glad you found it informative. I was hoping to just give a bit of background that would entice people to explore on their own. Plus, it is neat when one starts to discover the ways different authors used each of the admirals (and other characters) in the stories they wrote, creating really interesting ties. A lot of people admonish the EU for being cluttered and random, but in reality there is a lot of very clear connections created with purpose when one really digs into it all.

      What EU stories have you read?

      Liked by 1 person

      1. I forget the titles, but they were about the Solo twins. To tell you the truth, it was more a skim read. I just wanted to know how their final fight ended!

        Liked by 1 person

      2. Nothing wrong with a skim read. I do that with some books, too. And I have definitely done that with some Star Wars books. I do think part of the problem with the EU is that there are so many books in it that it is hard to know where to begin, and it is easy to begin with something one wouldn’t enjoy. Which, in turn, could paint all of the other books as being “not good” if that very first read wasn’t enjoyable. That is why I suggest people look into starting SW stories (EU or Disney) that have thematic ideas/elements they might enjoy. Or that focus on specific time periods or characters. I just think narrowing down one’s individual criteria makes a lot of sense when trying to decide where to begin and hoping to hit upon a winner.

        Have you ever thought about diving into the EU in any significant way or are you just sorta “meh” on it at this point?

        Liked by 1 person

      3. Meh is a good response. While I would love to read EU stories about Luke where he has a wife, child & DIGNITY; I don’t really have the time considering my other reading interests.

        Liked by 1 person

  1. To paraphrase something an old history teacher of mine used to say about another history teacher, “You’ve forgotten more about the Empire than I’ll ever know.” Seriously man, your knowledge is encyclopedic! This is an impressive feat and something I’m sure I’ll return to as I continue my re-read of the Expanded Universe. Thanks for doing all this work for me (and others too, I guess) so I can just come to one site to easily find all this info too!

    Liked by 1 person

  2. I like this post! It’s well written and, since I’m a very linear thinker, this was perfectly formatted that I read all of it. If you wrote it with pictures and more visuals you probably would have lost me.

    The Glove of Darth Vader is certainly a blast from the past. I knew I had read it but it had been a while so I looked up the summary on Wookiepedia. I can’t really remember much other than Ackbar being in it. It must not have been memorable as I don’t recall Josef Grunger.

    And I’m glad you made up most of it – it’s super convincing, I believe it all! 😉 Have you seen the movie Shattered Glass with our Anakin Skywalker as the main role? He made up a bunch of stuff for his articles and as Stephen Glass and people believed it because it was so convincing and written realistically that no one fact checked until he was way too deep. Maybe that’s like your posts…. haha!

    Liked by 1 person

    1. Glad you liked it! I didn’t want to overwhelm people with tons of info/descriptions about each character so I thought I would streamline the whole thing. If people want to know more about any of the Grand Admirals, they can go from here and do some research on their own. Plus, it was fun putting in a bunch of pictures in a different format. I am gonna try to use that gallery option more often in posts.

      I loved The Glove of Darth Vader! I haven’t read it in a while but I might have to read it sometime this summer. My summer plan is to do a lot of EU re-reads/a lot of EU themed posts. I need to get “back to basics” with my Star Wars love (the Disney stuff is just not going it for me right now) and remind myself of the stories that held my attention for years.

      I have not watched that movie but it sounds interesting. Admittedly, I think the only film with Hayden Christensen I have watched since Revenge of the Sith was Jumper. Otherwise I haven’t exactly kept up with his career.

      Like

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