xcalibur wrote:it's important to keep in mind that the encyclopedia was compiled after god emperor and before heretics/chapterhouse. FH naturally didn't want to limit himself to what was put down in the encyclopedia, he wanted free rein to create. and so, where there are contradictions, official canon takes precedence, but that doesn't necessarily refute the encyclopedia. in fact, for Frank Herbert to strictly stay within the guidelines of numerous articles by various authors would've been a bit much.
Yes, those are probably the reasons why FH made sure to point out that he was not committed to what it said, and hence why it is not canon. I note that even in the preface to the book, he carefully avoids actually endorsing anything it says, just saying he gives the encyclopedia "his delighted approval" – a key distinction.
Can you point to any instances where FH seems to have been inspired by, or decided to incorporate some original idea or detail from the Dune Encyclopedia into his books? Because as long as all we have are contradictions, I think it does refute the Encyclopedia as a whole.
xcalibur wrote:I agree that it's not fully canon, but it's a better source than the "museum dune" books by that pair of hacks. therefore I consider it semi-canon for lack of a better term. I could call it quasi-canon if that suits you better.
If by "canon" we mean the set of texts fans are compelled to accept as authoritative, then the Dune Encyclopedia is not canon, because Frank Herbert is the only undisputed authority on Dune, and there's no indication he felt committed to any of the information in the DE.
I don't think "semi-canon" or "quasi-canon" are meaningful terms (if we extend the metaphor that gave us the term, it should be either "deuterocanonical" or "apocryphal"). If you just mean to say that it's a text that adds to the other books, and that fans can choose to treat it as true where it doesn't contradict Frank Herbert, then sure. But you could say the same thing about the BH&KJA books. I don't think you've offered any particularly compelling argument that we ought to