All Star Wars Imperial officers have some kind of rank badges on theirs chest. As an illustration, here is Firmus Piett, an Imperial Navy Admiral, posing along with a freehand circle and arrow :

Firmus Piett

How do those badges work? Is there a chart showing the different square configuration for each rank?

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    Under SE honor code, I have to upvote for the freehand circle. Commented Jan 26, 2012 at 17:51

2 Answers 2


The Wookieepedia article Rank Insignia of the Galactic Empire in fact includes several charts.

Essentially, longer bars means higher rank. In some cases, the lower blue rectangles are mixed between blue and orange - this is an older style of rank insignia.

Additionally to the rectangles, the number of cylinders in the pockets plays a part in reading the rank insignia. These are also, I believe, used to authenticate someone's identity to computer systems - one can be removed and dropped into a port, which reads the information stored on it and verifies it against the submitter.

The rank insignia mean different things to the Rebels. To the rebels, they are targets. Bigger bars are bigger targets.

Update: To illustrate "longer bars means higher rank", here's an illustration:

enter image description here

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    I added an illustration. Feel free to roll it back - it may be too campy/offtopic. Commented Jan 26, 2012 at 18:00
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    I always thought those cylinders were some kind of Flash-Gordony ballpoint pen or something, or maybe a spiffy kind of pocket protector.
    – Tango
    Commented Jan 26, 2012 at 19:17
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    – DavRob60
    Commented Jan 26, 2012 at 20:19
  • @DVK - I approve wholeheartedly, especially since I got crazy busy yesterday and couldn't take screencaps of the charts from the article (which aren't images, but a mix of HTML and images).
    – Jeff
    Commented Jan 27, 2012 at 14:32
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    For those who didn't follow the link - the chap in the picture is Leonid Ilyich Brezhnev, General Secretary of the Central Committee of the Communist Party of the Soviet Union (basically, he ran USSR, for those not well versed in soviet rankings) between 1964 and 1982. Was (in)famous for having himself awarded with 100s of combat medals, even though he didn't merit most of them, having spend the war as a political officer. Commented Jan 27, 2012 at 15:27

The more square usually mean higher rank. There are some exceptions. For example, a colonel in ISB is equal to a navy admiral. Yellow squares replacing red or blue usually signify higher rank. For example and admiral with three blue squares removed and replaced with yellow is a Grand Admiral. An admiral badge with three red squares replaced with yellow is a Grand Moff.

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    What does this add that the accepted answer does not already cover?
    – amflare
    Commented Mar 2, 2018 at 21:17

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