"My name is Dawnstar. I was leader of ShadowClan many seasons ago. I give you a life for putting ShadowClan above all others. There are four Clans in the forest, but ShadowClan will always be the greatest."
— Dawnstar giving Raggedpelt his ninth life in Yellowfang's Secret, page 378

Dawnstar is a lean[3] creamy-brown she-cat[2] with green eyes.[1]

Dawnstar was an ancient ShadowClan leader in the forest territories, and her deputy and medicine cat were Snaketail and Molepelt, respectively. When SkyClan was driven out of their home, Dawnstar agreed with the other leaders and refused to let them have their land, not wanting to sacrifice precious territory. However, she realized her mistake once she reached StarClan. She gave Raggedpelt a life for putting his Clan above everything else, and later gave Leafdapple a life. During the she-cat's leader ceremony, Dawnstar and the other leaders apologized to Cloudstar for not saving SkyClan and driving them out of the forest.


In the Super Editions

Yellowfang's Secret

At Raggedpelt's leader ceremony, Dawnstar gives the tom his final life, to put ShadowClan above all else. She then calls out his leader name, Raggedstar, along with the rest of StarClan.

Firestar's Quest

Dawnstar is an ancient leader of ShadowClan.
She tells Swiftstar, the WindClan leader, that the Gathering cannot start because SkyClan hasn't arrived yet. Upon arriving, Dawnstar warmly welcomes them. When Cloudstar asks for more territory since SkyClan's home has been destroyed by Twolegs, Dawnstar refuses, saying that ShadowClan is the biggest of all the Clans, so they need every paw step of ground they have to supply them with prey.
Much later, Dawnstar appears at Leafstar's leadership ceremony with the other leaders at the time of SkyClan's departure: Swiftstar, Redstar, and Birchstar. She tells Cloudstar that ShadowClan is very sorry for their actions. Dawnstar states that the Clans had good reasons for what they did, but she regrets that they caused so much suffering for Cloudstar and his Clanmates. Firestar is astonished that such a graceful she-cat could be leader of ShadowClan; the Clan who seems to be the most troublesome in the forest, currently. He believes that perhaps ShadowClan was most likely different back then, and has the potential to change again.
Dawnstar gives Leafstar a life, with the gift of determination, to use to set her paws on the path of what she knows to be right. Dawnstar then tells Firestar that she and the other leaders thought they had to drive SkyClan away for the sake of their own Clans, but admits that it was a mistake.

Bramblestar's Storm

Although unnamed, Dawnstar is mentioned by Firestar, when the old ThunderClan leader is talking to Bramblestar about SkyClan. He says that the leaders of ThunderClan, WindClan, ShadowClan, and RiverClan had to deal with the consequences of their actions after being responsible for driving out SkyClan. Firestar goes on to tell Bramblestar that each of these leaders had come to visit Leafstar during her leadership ceremony, and in turn, gave her a life. Firestar says that this served as not only an apology, but a reminder that one Clan is not able to survive alone.

In the Novellas

Cloudstar's Journey

While at a Gathering, Cloudstar notes how all the other Clan leaders, including Dawnstar, look well-fed, while his ribs jut out. He tries to hide this.
Later, at SkyClan's last Gathering, Dawnstar refuses to give part of her Clan's territory to SkyClan. She meows that her Clan is very large and they need all of their land to survive.

In the Field Guides

The Ultimate Guide

Although not mentioned by name, it is mentioned on Cloudstar’s and Skywatcher’s page that when Twoleg dens started to destroy SkyClan's territory, Cloudstar looked to his rival Clans to help him and his Clan survive. Instead, Dawnstar and the other leaders protested that sharing territory would be impossible, that SkyClan could not catch different prey, and that if there were only four Great Oaks in the hollow, perhaps there were only meant to be four Clans.

Character pixels

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Leader info

Leader info
Name From To
Snaketail Before Cloudstar's Journey Before Goosefeather's Curse
Medicine cats
Name From To
Molepelt Before Cloudstar's Journey Before Mapleshade's Vengeance


Dawnstar: "ShadowClan is sorry too. We had good reasons for what we did, but I regret that we caused so much suffering to you and your Clanmates."
Cloudstar: "Thank you, Dawnstar. Thank you, all of you."
Redstar: "Nothing can make up for what we did. But we have each come here to give a life to the new leader of SkyClan, if we may."
Dawnstar: "[...] I give you a life of determination. Use it well to set your paws on the path of what you know to be right."
—The four leaders apologizing before giving Leafstar a life Firestar's Quest, pages 492-493

"Nor will ShadowClan. My Clan is bigger than any other. We need every pawstep of ground to feed our own cats."
—Dawnstar after Cloudstar asks for territory for his Clan Cloudstar's Journey, page Chapter 10

Notes and references

  1. 1.0 1.1 1.2 Revealed in Firestar's Quest, page 492
  2. 2.0 2.1 2.2 Revealed in Firestar's Quest, allegiances
  3. Revealed in Cloudstar's Journey, chapter 6
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