Is there much canon information about the Padishah Emperors in the Dune Universe?

If I remember correctly, the calendar in Dune dates from the Spacing Guild's legal monopoly on interstellar travel, so dates were usually given as AG (After Guild).

The Battle of Corrin, which resulted in the foundation of the Imperium under the House Corrino, happened in 88 BG (Before Guild).

In my copy of Dune Appendix IV: the Almanak en-Ashraf (Selected Excerpts of the Noble Houses) says of Shaddam IV (who lived 10,134-1022) that:

The Padishah Emperor, 81st of his line (House Corrino) to occupy the Golden Lion Throne, reigned from 10,156 (date his father Elrood IX, succumbed to Chaumurky) until replaced by the 10,196 Regency set up in the name of his eldest daughter Irulan...

I remember also reading in Dune that the spice lengthened human life spans, but that assassination of important persons by poison meant that they didn't live longer than normal persons who couldn't afford the spice.

If the House Corrino founded the empire in 88 BC, then 10,156 AG would be 10,244 years after the House Corrino founded the Empire. And Elrood IX who died in 10,156 was the 80th emperor, thus making 80 reigns in 10,244 years, or an average reign length of 128.05 years.

So if there is a statement in Dune that spice extends the lifetime of those who can afford it, but all important people were assassinated before they outlived the normal human lifespan, in the era of Dune the normal lifespan of people who couldn't afford spice must have been well over 100 years due to various medical advances.

Is there such a statement in Dune?

And are there any canon statements in any of the Dune novels about the names, lifespans, and reigns of the previous Padishah Emperors?

  • 2
    Do we accept stuff from the Dune Encyclopedia? dune.fandom.com/wiki/Padishah_Emperor/DE.
    – Valorum
    Jan 2 at 10:01
  • 4
    I'm pretty sure this can't be answered from what Frank Herbert wrote, and does anything else actually matter?
    – DavidW
    Jan 2 at 11:49
  • 2
    Was there a statement that no important person ever lived an extended lifespan without being assassinated, or that assassination was common and it was rare for an important person to survive? If it's the latter, a small number of emperors who managed to evade the assassins could greatly skew the calculation.
    – Michael
    Jan 2 at 18:46

1 Answer 1


In the book House Corrino Irulan say as her father is more than 200 years old and yet looks only 31. It depends on the dynamics, how careful the person was against assassination, etc

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