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Original Dune
This article or section refers to elements from Original Dune.

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The term "Pre-born" was used to refer to someone who was fully aware as a personality long before actual birth, able to peruse their ancestral memories in the same way as a Reverend Mother. According to the Bene Gesserit, a pre-born was vulnerable to be over-powered by a memory (or ancestor-ego) of theirs and could go insane.


Alia Atreides was pre-born, shocked to awareness when Lady Jessica took the Water of Life while she was pregnant. This resulted in the Sisterhood giving Alia the title of "Accursed One". She did eventually become possessed by the ancestor ego-memory of the Baron Vladimir Harkonnen.

Ghanima and Leto[]

Both Ghanima and Leto Atreides were also pre-born, but each found their own way to come to terms with their internal awareness and ancestry to avoid the fate of their aunt.

Behind the Scenes[]

In the 2003 Children of Dune miniseries, all three pre-born characters (Alia, Ghanima, and Leto II) are played by actors significantly older than them, suggesting that accelerated physical maturation is a side effect of pre-birth.

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