Guild Navigator

Guild Navigator
Name: Guild Navigator
Function: Interstellar Travel Overseer
Affiliation: Spacing Guild
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Her direct physical senses were deadened, and Norma no longer cared about taste, touch, or smell ... She found it remarkable to see webbing between her fingers and toes. Her face, once blunt-featured and later flawlessly beautiful, now had a small mouth and tiny eyes surrounded by smooth folds. Her head was immense, while the rest of her body atrophied to a useless appendage.
Description of Norma Cenva's experience of becoming the first Navigator.


Used by the Spacing Guild to guide ships through folded space, Guild Navigators (also known as Guild Steersmen), were deformed, bulbous or amphibious-looking creatures that had once been human but, in the interest of the Spacing Guild,

Guild Navigator

A Navigator converses with the Bene Gesserit, an organisation with whom the Guild had an unsteady coexistence.
had consumed vast quantities of concentrated spice with which to expand their consciousnesses. This granted them the power to navigate the maddening complexity of folded space, and its numerous immeasurably complex mathematical procedures, which no human with a lesser intelligence could crack. Due to their melange-saturated mutations, they were kept in specialised Guild Navigator tanks, where they would maintain a spice-diet through the use of melange tablets (taken orally), and used as emissaries and envoys for the Spacing Guild.


To the human eye, a Navigator may have seemed quite a spectacle. Mutations among them varied slightly but most were given large and deformed craniums, webbed, aquatic feet and hands, and, presumably, fish-like bodies that were useless, and had to be suspended in anti gravity whilst tank-bound. When a Navigator communicated, it was always in the interest of continuing the productivity of the Guild, as they were its only source of spice, which it needed to survive, or it would be unable to navigate folded space, and (though there is no evidence to suddest that it would) could go into addictive withdrawal. They spoke using a small speaker-like device located somewhere on the exterior casing of their tanks. In some circumstances, a contingent of carers surrounded the Navigator's tank, as they were so precious to the Guild that they needed to be kept under watch at all times (not to mention that they were physically unable to defend themselves).


In 177 B.G., Norma Cenva, who would later become the first Guild Navigator, devised the theory of folding space to allow a ship to pass from one location to another instantaneously. By 174 B.G., she had constructed the first prototype space-folding ship, and some years later she, along with Aurelius Venport, established a shipyard of Kolhar, which began production of heighliners. A first, Norma's creations were used to aid the members of the Butlerian Jihad, but since folding space was a tricky business at the time, only nine in every ten heighliners survived their journey. Norma therefore pioneered the usage of melange to increase calculative powers in the on-board human navigator, and discovered that melange, in great quantities, increases prescience, and mutates the body. Norma became the first navigator, but many more were to follow.
After the rule of the Lord Leto Atreides II, Guild Navigators became obsolete due to the creation of an Ixian device that possessed the same capabilities as them. A few remained however, and were still in use in Guild Transports.

Notable Navigators

Norma Cenva

Relevant Article: Norma Cenva
The first of the Navigators, and the inventor of the foldspace theory, Norma Cenva experimented with vast quantities of spice, and managed to mutate herself into the first Navigator form. She used her heighliners to assist the Butlerian Jihad in their quest to eradicate thinking machines.

D'murr Pilru

Relevant Article: D'murr Pilru
The son of Ambassador Cammar Pilru of Ix,
D'murr Pilru and his brother, C'tair Pilru, both took the test set by the Spacing Guild to prove themselves worthy navigators. Only D'murr passed. When he began training, and was told he would never see his family again, which was the truth.

Oberon (non-canon)

Relevant Article: Oberon
One of the foremost emissaries for the Guild, Oberon spent most of his time on the sanctuary planet of Tupile, but when he did venture out, it was only to perform great diplomatic feats for the Guild. He once even spoke with the Padishah Emperor Shaddam IV on the matter of Paul Atreides.


Edric, executed for treason.
Relevant Article: Edric
A true navigator, loyal to his Guild even unto death, Edric was one of the conspirators plotting to kill Paul Atreides. Several attempts on Paul's life were made, resulting only in the man's blindness, but they were unable to kill him. Finally, the conspirators were hunted down, and Edric, along with several others, including the Reverend Mother Gaius Helen Mohiam, were executed.


Edrik, another Guild Navigator with entourage.
Relevant Article: Edrik
Edrik was a Guild Navigator during the time when the Guild was pressured into using more advanced Ixian technology to power their ships. Since this technology did not require navigators, Edrik began to fear that he, along with many others, would become obsolete.
Guild Navigator Prototype
An early Guild Navigator Prototype.

Out of-Universe Information

The Guild Navigator first appeared in Dune Messiah, in the form of Edric. They also appeared visually in Dune, the film, as a huge, bloated puppet. The design for this puppet changed during pre-production, and used to be a little more pouted. It was a basic flexible skinned puppet, maintained by a group of puppeteers that painted and operated it. In the Dune series, the Guild Navigator was not fully puppeteer operated, but rather used puppeteers for the close ups, and stop-motion for the far away shots.

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