Does Frank Herbert ever state who took over governorship of the planet Caladan after House Atreides departed for Arrakis? It seems to be implied that they gave Caladan up rather than governing both it and Arrakis. In contrast the Harkonnens govern Giedi Prime, their homeworld, and also governed Arrakis until the Emperor ordered the change.

I don't recall anything in the novel discussing what happened to Caladan after the Atreides departed. Was it mentioned in any of Herbert's sequels, or did he discuss it in interviews or leave notes?

4 Answers 4


The original mentions in an Appendix that Count Fenring was (presumably) temporarily given control of Caladan until a new house could be chosen to take permanent control.

All accounts agree that Fenring was the closest friend Shaddam IV possessed. The Imperial chores carried out by Count Fenring included that of Imperial Agent on Arrakis during the Harkonnen regime there and later Siridar-Absentia of Caladan. He joined Shaddam IV in retirement on Salusa Secundus."

Dune: Appendix III

Note that this must have occurred during the period between the Atreides leaving and Halleck being given the fiefdom by Emperor Paul at the end of Dune.

I'll want an earldom and CHOAM directorship for Gurney Halleck, and him in the fief of Caladan

  • thank you, I actually just re read it but missed this. It is a dense work though. I will have a look myself and see if I can spot the relevant passage.
    – skyjack
    Jul 22, 2021 at 22:49
  • 2
    @skyjack - I have taken the liberty of editing in the passage that you are referring to as well as giving this a timescale from the same book.
    – Valorum
    Nov 3, 2021 at 19:06
  • @Valorum many thanks!
    – skyjack
    Nov 4, 2021 at 1:48

From the Dune wiki:

After the Atreides moved to Arrakis, Count Hasimir Fenring was named Siridar-Absentia of Caladan. However, when House Atreides ascended to the Golden Lion Throne in 10193 AG following the Arrakis Revolt, Caladan once again came under the direct rule of the Atreides.

Before Dune, Fenring was the Emperor's Imperial Agent on Arrakis.


In a long section of plot exposition, Piter states:

... to make Leto exchange Caladan for Dune - and without alternative because the Emperor orders it.

Which could be read to mean that the two planets were literally exchanged for each other (i.e. the Atreides no longer have that fiefdom).


Caladan remained under control of House Atreides when they moved to Arrakis. They relied on its water and food shipments still, but after the House got seeminly destroyed it was handed over to Count Fenring.

  • 3
    Hi, welcome to SF&F. Do you have a source for this? It seems to disagree with the existing answers that say Fenring was put in charge when the Atreides left.
    – DavidW
    Nov 3, 2021 at 18:32

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