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House Crests


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Although WW modified some of the crests, or took them from other houses to use in their games, where did each House get it from - are they chosen or bestowed?

Does it represent the House's beliefs/attitudes, or are they historically significant?

Also, what are the crests of the houses (in the books), and are they pictured anywhere?

I ask in part as the Harkonnen's has a ram, which I find a bit curious (hehe; wolf in sheep's clothing!).


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I can't remember crests of Richese/Moritani ever being mentioned in the novels. However, the Spacing Guild's crest is a mobius loop of infinity, I think.

Another source you should consider in this discussion is the film by David Lynch. In one of his books (Eye) Frank Herbert talks about the film, saying that he completely endorsed the film's depiction of events, or words to that effect.

So Frank Herbert might have wanted the Guild to have the circle-and-line insignia like in the film and in Emperor.

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Just out of curiosity, where did each of you aquire your information about the crests from? What are your sources (book/chapter/scene/even pagenumber&edition if you can). Its a topic ive recently looked into and in the original books by FH(which for the most part is what im interesting in obtaining the information from, as i equate any other source as a secondary one, or even newer child) i've found few references to the subject. I have been able to fill in most of what i could of the Atreides standard, and even the harkonnen to a degree, and with some slight interpretation. The corrion i havent confirmed yet, and most if any others i have yet to search for.

Once i get things more consolidated and nailed down, i'll post the results in this thread again, but until then, i would be interested in seeing some quotes along with sources from suggestions people have submitted. The more people we have workin on it the quicker we can find out what they really are :).

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Khan; You're welcome 8)

Tio; You wouldn't happen to know where I could get more info on the Dune House Crests do you? If online, then even better! And before anyone says it, no - I can't get hold of DE!

Timmen; Your're right, the Guild's symbol is both apt and distinctive. I too like it, though a little embellishment would be good to give it a more Renaissance feel, whilst still remaining quite 'Corporate'.

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The Green black hawk is mentioned alot of times in the story. (Paul thinking about the jihad with the green black hawk banners and people shouting his name)

The Harkonnen Griffin, I don't know where I knew that from, but there is a picture of it on the front of House Harkonnen.

And that it is blue, there was a phrase in Dune:

'A rain of blue uniforms came over the cliff wall in front of him, falling in low-suspensor slowness. In the flashing instant, Hawat had time to see that they were Sardaukar...' (The Sardaukar wore Harkonnen uniforms)

And the Golden Lion Throne, I don't know where I read that in Dune. And they were also red according to Brain Herbert and KJ Anderson

And the helix of Ix, it is mentioned alot of time in the Preludes to Dune

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My sources have simply been the books, the David Lynch film which Herbert himself endorsed, and the games Dune2, Dune2k and Emperor which have been heavily based on the film. In the books, the only crests I can remember being mentioned are Atreides, Harkonnen, Vernius and Corrino.

The golden lion throne is mentioned in the Prelude Books frequently....

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Well, heres what i've dug up pertaining to the Atreides standard. I'll post later on other standards. (sorry about the carrage returns... i didnt have time to clean it up).

Since the DUNE books dont have chapter numbers, i'll try to specify the

quote at the beginning of the chapter, and the scene if possible.


"He [duke leto] pointed out the window to the Atreides green and black

banner hanging limply from a staff at the edge of the landing field." (DUNE

1) (QT:"There is probably no more terrible instant of englightenment then

the one in which you discover your father is a man--with human flesh.")

(Scene where Duke Leto informs Paul of his thoughts towards Jessica as the

traitor, and tells Paul to inform her that he never thought such a thing,

if ever something happened to him)

This is the first mention of the atreides standard, and is the first

mention of it being "green and black." It is mentioned multiple times after

this in the same volume.

The hawk symbol, commonly used by post series Dune associates (the games,

the encyclopedia?, ect) was never actually specified as being their

consistant standard, and is argueably not part of their consistant

standard. At the time of Duke Leto's reign it is most probable that it was

the Atredies standard, and was coloured red. "It carried the red Atreides

hawk crest above the breast pocket."(DUNE 1) (First chapter) (When paul is

told to dress by his mother for the meeting with Reverened Mother Gaius

Helen Mohiam). Besides this, and other mention of the hawk insignia on dress of his father,

it is not mentioned as part of the standard until we get another suggestion

of the hawk, futher into the story. "Gurney Halleck and a few others of his

father's men--a pitiful few--were among them, all marked by the hawk symbol

from the shrine of his father's skull."(DUNE 1) (When paul is having his

precient visions while in the stiltent with his mother, while they wait for

duncan). This however implies that it is indeed his FATHER's symbol, and not the

Atreides symbol. With help from this quote, we can probably assume that since

much of the political structure of the universe is based on a early Italian

rennisance (through all the books actually, even up to the later ones when the

fudalistic housing and "city state" style fell apart, leaving the area of the

universe to be taken over by the predominate religious-like figures, the BG),

that the standards system is also much like that era, where the penent colours

remain constant, but the symbolistical recognition of the House changes from

ruler to ruler. The hawk symbol probably came about to represent his father's reign

because of the Hawk like facial features of Duke Leto: "Behind them[heavy atreides guards]

came a tall man[Duke Leto], hawk-faced, dark of skin and hair."(DUNE1) (QT: "My father,

the Padishah Emperor, took me by the hand one day and i sensed in the ways my

mother had taught me that he was disturbed...") (When Leto and Paul meet Leit-Kynes

for the frist time.).

During Paul's reign, or at least during the substitution reign of his sister Alia, under

Muad'dib's name, the symbol on the standard of the House, which by that time was the

imperial house, had become the moon named Muad'dib, which obviously had heavy representation

of Paul: "Alia's temple dominated the foreground; green and black hangings along

its two-thousand-meter sides displayed the moon symbol of Muad'dib." (DUNE2: Massiah)

(QT: "I think what a joy it is to be alive, and i wonder if I'll ever leap inward to

the root of this flesh and know myself as i once was...") (When "dead" Muad'dib visits

Alia's temple in Arrakeen). This of course reenforces the idea that any emblum on the

Atreides standard usualy changes from ruler to ruler. A purly hypothetical guess could

say that Duke Leto's father, had a symbol of a bull, given his facination with personal

bull-fighting in a public forum.

As a result, it can be reasonably decided that the standard for the Atreides is inconsistant

where any symbol is concerned, but usualy consistant in the standard's colours, when you

take into account only the original writings of Frank Herbert.

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I know Richese has a copper/purple motif, just like H. Vernius. It was in House Harkonnen somewhere. I don't remember much about an hourglass though.

Worf: The Hourglass is a heraldic symbol, and it most likely refers to their anscestors. Today, it stands for mortality or the "flight of time". In a way, it's fitting for H. Richese, as they were once very powerful (they even controlled Arrakis for a time), but are now in the shadow of the superior yet bolder Ixians.

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