'The Mandalorian': What Is Beskar?

The Mandalorian has been making waves on Disney+ since its premiere episode. Fans are raving over the new show, and so far every episode has received rave reviews. However, there is plenty of Star Wars lore buried within the nooks and crannies of The Mandalorian, and some of that reveals itself in the form of beskar. 

Fans have seen the protagonist earn beskar as a reward for his tasks, and it seems to be a highly coveted metal among his tribe. So what is the deal with beskar? (Warning: This article may contain light spoilers for The Mandalorian.)

Where do Mandalorians come from?

The Mandalorians are legendary throughout the Star Wars universe. Mandalore itself is a plent that occupies the Outer Rim, its surface scarred and rendered inhabitable by years of warfare. Now, they live in domed cities on their otherwise unlivable planet. 

While the Mandalorians today are humans, that wasn’t always the case. Once Disney acquired Star Wars, all the rules changed in terms of what is and isn’t canon in the series’ universe. Prior to the acquisition, however, there was a race called the Taung. Taung were a lizard-like people that were the indigenous inhabitants of Coruscant. 

The Taung eventually migrated to Mandalore, where they slew the mythosaurs and established their dynasty. The Taung were known to take in and accept other species. Over time, the Taung died out. However, the species’ they took in carried on their culture in the form of Mandalorians. 

Now, it seems as if the Taung and Mandalore’s previous history with the alien race has been largely wiped from the official canon of Star Wars

Mandalorian warrior culture 

While the Taung’s hand in the creation of Mandalorian culture may have been removed from canon, the culture remains largely intact. In fact, they are feared across the Star Wars universe for their martial prowess and seemingly indomitable will. 

These warriors are famed for being one of the few races capable of going up against Jedi Knights and coming out on top. In fact, the Mandalorians once waged a crusade against the Inner Rim and the Jedi Council during an expansionist portion of their history. 

Mandalorian armor is paramount in their culture. In Star Wars Rebels, Mandalorian leader Sabine Wren says, “Ezra, the armor I wear is five hundred years old. I reforged it to my liking, but the battles, the history, the blood all lives within it. And the same goes for every Mandalorian. This armor is part of our identity. It makes us Mandalorians who we are.”

Honor duels and one-on-one combat are also important to Mandalorian culture. Duels can even be used to determine leadership. 

What is beskar?

Because Mandalorians hold combat in such high esteem, it’s only natural that they’d seek out the best when it comes to their armor and weapons. After several efforts to build their ideal armor, Mandalorians settled upon beskar. 

Beskar is a metal native to Mandalore and its moon. According to the Star Wars fandom wiki’s canon tab, beskar is capable of withstanding blaster shots, and even turning aside glancing blows from lightsabers. 

However, the Empire began hoarding beskar for its own purposes during the Great Purge, a period of time in which the Empire slaughtered Mandalorians. The metal holds great value to Mandalorians not only for its strength, but also because of its cultural significance among the martial people.  

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