The ecumenopolis of Coruscant plays a pivotal role in the Star Wars prequel trilogy and its history remains just as fascinating after the events of the original trilogy. Once the capital of the Galactic Republic, Coruscant became the center of the Galactic Empire following Palpatine’s coup. Once The Emperor died (for the first time) during the Battle of Endor, canon and Legends tell different accounts of what happened to this invaluable world for the remainder of the Galactic Civil War and the age of the New Republic.
In the Legends continuity, Coruscant was renamed to Imperial Center following the fall of the Republic, and the now-Imperial City became the secret home of the Lusankya, a Super Star Destroyer that Palpatine kept as an escape craft. In the current canon, Palpatine converted the ruined Jedi Temple into the Imperial Palace, further tarnishing the Jedi Order’s legacy. As shown in Return of the Jedi, Coruscant’s populace rioted against the Empire following Palpatine’s first death, with these revolts becoming a planetary civil war in canon and being brutally suppressed in Legends. Coruscant eventually becomes the New Republic capital in both continuities, though how and when differs between canon and Legends.
Coruscant Remained Important To The Empire After Return Of The Jedi
In Legends, the Empire fractured into various warlord factions following Palpatine’s first death. One such faction, led by Ysanne Isard (formerly the Director of Imperial Intelligence), controlled Imperial Center, where the ecumenopolis remained a major Imperial stronghold for two years after the Battle of Endor. In 6 ABY, the costly Liberation of Coruscant would finally put the ecumenopolis under New Republic control, but this was hardly the end of Coruscant’s importance to Imperial factions. Isard, Grand Admiral Thrawn, and even the reborn Emperor Palpatine himself would besiege Coruscant, with the latter forcing the New Republic to temporarily adopt Da Soocha V and Nespis VIII as its capital worlds.
In canon, Coruscant’s post-Endor Imperial history was even shorter than in Legends. The riots shown in Return of the Jedi engulfed the planet into a civil war, with citizens revolting against Imperials. While the Empire did not fraction into the same warlord factions as it did in Legends, the now-headless government struggled to maintain control over its capital, with Gallius Rax, a friend and protégée of Palpatine’s, methodically ensuring the demise of the Empire (and planting the seeds of its rebirth) in the year following the Battle of Endor.
Coruscant Lost Its Place As The Galactic Capital
In Legends, Coruscant would remain the capital of the New Republic until 27 ABY, when the Yuuzhan Vong terraformed the world, leading the New Republic to adopt Mon Calamari as its new capital. The New Republic’s successor state, the Galactic Federation of Free Alliances, would retake Coruscant (renamed Yuuzhan’tar) and use it as their capital. In the following eras, Coruscant would be claimed by Darth Krayt’s Sith Empire, the One Sith, and the Galactic Federation Triumvirate.
Coruscant would not remain the capital of the New Republic in the canon continuity either. Canon’s New Republic would have a rotating capital world, with Coruscant being the first but Chandrila and Nakadia being among its successors. By the events of the Star Wars sequel trilogy, the New Republic’s capital was Hosnian Prime, which the First Order obliterated with its superweapon housed in Ilum’s Starkiller Base.