Padme Amidala was a central figure in the Star Wars prequels, serving as a respected senator, Queen, and also becoming the love interest of Anakin Skywalker. However, this would partially prove to be the cause of her tragic death.
Once their relationship bloomed, Anakin started to have visions of Padme in nightmares. Since Anakin also had visions of his mother before she died, Anakin took this as a sign that Padme would surely die during childbirth, just like in his dreams.
In the end, he was proved correct, but not in the way that he thought. Padme’s actual cause of death was much more complicated than he envisioned.
There still remains a lot of mystery revolving around Padme’s death, both canonically and in fan theories. This has led to a lot of questions that need answering.
Did Padme die in childbirth? Did she die when Anakin force-choked her?
To give a quick answer, Padme Amidala canonically died of a “broken heart” after giving birth to Luke and Leia.
The medial droids were unable to explain why she was dying because the extreme mental anguish of watching Anakin turn to the dark side of the Force was actually the root cause of her death.
Do you still have questions? Read on to learn more about Anakin, Padme, and her tragic death.
Table of Contents
Did Padme Die In Childbirth?
Although Anakin predicted that Padme would die during childbirth, this is partially untrue. Padme died AFTER childbirth, which means that simply the act of giving birth didn’t contribute to her death.
During Padme’s delivery, the medical droids reported to Obi-Wan that they were losing Padme. They explained that medically she was fine, but she had lost the will to live.
The act of giving birth didn’t kill her, nor did complications from the procedure. It was something else that caused her to lose the will to live.
Some fans even theorize that when Anakin force-choked her on Mustafar and caused her to collapse, it could have been part of what led to her death. Even though it didn’t kill her right then, it’s possible that it could have contributed to complications during delivering the baby.
However, this was proven untrue when the medical droids reported that she was completely medically healthy.
Did Anakin Kill Padme?
Despite Anakin’s physical attack, Padme was still well enough to give birth to their two twins. She fell unconscious after Anakin force-choked her, but was that enough to contribute to her death?
Emperor Palpatine chose to tell Anakin that he killed Padme when he force-choked her, even though this was a lie. He implied that Anakin killed Padme out of anger while she was still on Mustafar, despite the fact that she went on to live and give birth to their children.
After all, Anakin even admitted that he sensed that Padme was alive after he choked her. Palpatine’s statement was a lie meant to manipulate Anakin.
In reality, Palpatine told Anakin he killed Padme to increase his hatred and rage, thus growing his power in the dark side of the Force.
Anakin knew that she was alive when she was on Mustafar, but he was so ridden with guilt and anger when he heard that she died that he didn’t confront the Emperor’s lie.
This must have consumed Anakin with self-hatred. After all, the only reason he joined the dark side was to save Padme from death.
Even if he had doubts that Palpatine’s story was true, there was nothing he could do. She was already dead, and he had already given himself over to the dark side.
Regardless of how he interpreted her death, Anakin must have blamed himself. He tried to save her by joining the dark side, but he ended up losing her anyway.
Did Padme Die From Sadness?
Most fans believe that Padme died of a broken heart. Although this may seem implausible and has been the subject of a lot of criticism of the prequels, it’s actually the more logical explanation.
Padme didn’t die as a result of childbirth or because Anakin force-choked her. Instead, she died because she had lost the will to live in the light of Anakin’s transition to evil.
Believe it or not, this can actually happen medically. Dying from a broken heart is a real condition called broken heart syndrome and can be brought on by intense emotional trauma.
If there was ever cause for a broken heart, Anakin’s downward spiral was certainly a good reason. Her entire world flipped upside down in a matter of hours.
What’s worse is that Anakin’s attempts to save her life are actually part of what killed her. He joined Palpatine to try to learn the secrets to prolonging life, but in doing so he ended up becoming evil and causing her so much emotional pain that she died.
Though this story may be the clearest modern-day example of tragic irony, even Padme knew that there was still good in Anakin at the time of her death. With her dying breath, she told Obi-Wan she knew that there was still hope for Anakin to return to the light side of the Force.
Although she never got to see it in person, her son Luke would prove her right.
Even though a lot of critics of the prequels use Padme’s death as an example of a gaping plot hole, it actually makes more sense than most fans realize.
The intense trauma of Anakin killing younglings, abandoning the Jedi, and choking Padme after a soul-crushing argument took a part of Padme’s soul that she just couldn’t get back.
Although many fans have theories that Palpatine drained Padme’s life force to heal Anakin, the Star Wars canon says otherwise. Padme did in fact die of a broken heart.
If anything, this proves the pure evil of the Sith and the grip that it had on Anakin’s heart.
Instead of loving his wife, he attacked her. Instead of helping to save her, his actions became part of what killed her.
Anakin’s downfall to the dark side proved just as tragic for him as it did for others. His good intentions meant nothing in the wake of his own destruction.
However, Padme was right. There was still good in Anakin.
Despite all the pain he caused and all the death that surrounded his consuming hatred, Anakin fulfilled his prophecy and defeated the Emperor.
In the end, he brought balance to the Force and revealed the good in himself, just like Padme knew all along.