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When Yoda was 700 years old, he served on a council of Jedi Masters instructing new students aboard the massive Jedi training vessel Chu'unthor. The starship crashed onto the planet of Dathomir. The Jedi Masters attempted to free the vessel from its swampy confines but they were repulsed by the Dathomirian Nightsisters.
Much of Yoda's history is unknown. Just prior to the dark times that accompanied the fall of the Republic, Yoda trained the Gannathan royal King Empatojayos Brand in the ways of the Force. Another student of his was the powerful and stern Qu Rahn.
Another tale of Yoda's past involves stopping a swath of destruction cut by Dark Jedi from Bpfassh. One of these dark siders had gotten as far as Dagobah, were Yoda bested him in direct confrontation. The Bpfasshi Jedi died, his dark Force absorbing into and twisting a nearby tree -- forming a dark side nexus. It is believed that Yoda chose Dagobah as his hiding place due to the dark side energies emanating from the tree. From a distance, Force-users like the Emperor would not detect Yoda since the master's bright light side presence would be canceled by the Bpfasshi dark side presence.
Like all the Jedi, Yoda became a General in the Clone Wars, leading swarms of Republic clone troopers into battle against the Confederacy of Independent Systems. It was a tumultuous time for the Jedi. Some Jedi, disagreeing with the politics behind the war, left the order in protest. Recognizing that dissension in the Jedi ranks would make the order look weak to both the public and its enemies, Yoda was gravely concerned by these turns of events.
Though Yoda was more widely known as a sage instructor who stayed mostly within the Jedi Temple, he saw frontline combat action during the Clone Wars. He led troops into the field atop a loyal kybuck steed, leading the charge against the Separatists. On Axion, the diminutive Jedi Master defeated a missile-laden hailfire droid with his wits and the power of the Force. Yoda was also instrumental in easing the strained diplomatic relations between the Senate and the Wookiees, keeping Kashyyyk within the Republic during the conflict.
Early in the Galactic Civil War, Alliance historian Major Arhul Hextrophon was researching stories about the Jedi Master when he came across evidence of Yoda's existence at the University of Charmath. Hextrophon voyaged to Dagobah, where he met Yoda. Yoda was about to erase Arhul's mind of any knowledge of the Jedi Master when he had a change of heart. Instead, he swore Arhul to secrecy, and let him depart. Aside from logging it in his personal journals, it is believed Hextrophon has not told a soul.