- "Arrakis...Dune...desert planet"
- ―Paul Atreides[src]
Arrakis, also known as "Dune", is the third planet of Canopus, and appears in the Dune series. It is the single most important planet in the Known Universe because it is the sole source of the spice melange.
Arrakis is a desolate desert planet of vast wastes and no bodies of water. desert storms can strip flesh from bone in minutes. The only habitable areas on Arrakis are within 60 degrees latitude north and south.
The only known sentient life on the planet is the Fremen who live within the rocks. The greatest known creature was Shai-Hulud, the sandworms of the planet who excreeted the melange(see below).
History of the Planet
- "With the storm their air power will be useless. On Arrakis, it's desert power."
- ―Paul Atreides[src]In the 102nd century, under the control of CHOAM, the spice was mined from the planet and sold on the Imperial market. The Fremen had long held a prophecy that a man would come and lead them to freedom. That man was Paul Atreides.
In the year 10,191, House Harkonnen(who ruled Arrakis for 80 years), was ordered to evacuate the planet and return to Giedi Prime. This was ordered by Emperor Shaddam Corrino IV because the Harkonnen's enemies, House Atreides, was to have Arrakis. Duke Leto Atreides, the ruler of his House, suspected foul play. He took control of the planet with his concubine, the Lady Jessica Atreides, and their son, Paul.
The Imperial House Corrino, who ruled the Universe on planet Kaitain, devised a plan to destroy the Atreides. This was because of the army the Duke was training. Rumors had circulated that the army was more powerful than the Corrino's Sardaukar, who were the most powerful warriors of the Universe. With the Baron Vladimir Harkonnen being the Duke's enemy, Shaddam and the Baron conspired to destroy them. They attacked Arrakis and killed the Duke. The Emperor could rule without fear of being overpowered, and the Baron was given control of Arrakis once more.
Unknown to them, however, Paul and his mother survived and hid in the desert. They were taken in by the Fremen and trained to survive in the desert. Paul became one of their leaders, and trained them to fight as well as his father's army.
Two years later, in 10,193, Paul brought all spice production to a hault. The Emperor gathered the armies of all the Great Houses and went to Arrakis to stop Paul. Paul defeated him and took the Golden Lion Throne from Shaddam and, avenging his father's death, became the new Emperor of the Known Universe. When this happened, he ordered that Arrakis become the new Imperial Capital(Shaddam's capital being Kaitain).
If the Emperor saw fit, and with the supervision of the Imperial Court, he could order any Great House to control Arrakis to mine the spice.
Significant rulers were...
- House Fenring, who ruled for only a short time, and were good friends of the Imperial House Corrino.
- House Harkonnen, enemies of the Atreides, who ruled for 80 years before they did.
- House Atreides, who took control of Arrakis in 10,191, only to be destroyed by the Harkonnens(with help from the Emperor, unknown to anyone).
The spice was only on Arrakis. Something else was only on Arrakis as well: the Sandworms. Attracted to all vibrations, whether it was from spice mining or anything else, they would attack and come up to the surface. Most of the sand on Arrakis is credited to sandworm action.
A sandworm could grow to enormous size. In the deep desert, worms were seen to be 400 meters long. A worm could live a great expectancy. They could only be killed by one of their own, or by being drowned in water, which was poison to them.
To the Fremen, the worms were referred to as Shai-Hulud, and were considered the Gods of Arrakis. The Fremen could capture a worm and ride it on the surface of the desert. A tooth of the worm could be made into a weapon of the Fremen: a Crysknife, which, under no circumstances, could leave the planet. And known to the Fremen but not to many others: the worms were the spice, the spice was the worms, the worms created the spice.(Dune)