At the moment, there are three major dwarven kingdoms in Glanodel, Fundur, Grinarv, and Thalim'har, which served as the namesake of these mountains. All dwarves are very prideful people, and will always reject aid of any kind until their life depends on it, usually. However, if you stay with a dwarf long enough, they will prove to be the most capable, dependable, and loyal friend you will ever have. They may be rigid, but their hearts are made of gold, and they have no problem showing it to those who are closest to them.
Dwarven Society and LanguageEdit
Dwarven society is very orderly. Though it is not necessarily strict, adherence to its unwritten and written laws are expected from all dwarves who are part of the clans who dwell within their Mountains. Dwarves, more than anything else, fear chaos, and this is why their society is always so neatly organized. Dwarven society is organized into clans. In the old days before the forming of the dwarven kingdoms, clans settled close together anyway, since they usually needed the same raw materials for their crafts. Clans are competitive, though there is generally no anomosity between clans, perhaps dislike, but all Dwarves share a strong sense of kinship with all their brethren.. Trading members for gold, status, and/or new members is a regular occurrence and expected. Dwarven cities which form the basis for present day dwarven kingdoms were founded when enough clans moved to a particular location and by chance created a community. Each dwarven clan usually specializes in a particular craft or skill; young dwarves are apprenticed at an early age to a master in their clan (or, occasionally, in another clan) to learn a trade. Since dwarves live so long, apprenticeships last for many years. Dwarves also consider political and military prowess a skilled trade, so soldiers and politicians are usually subjected to a long period of apprenticeship before they are considered professionals.To members of other races, life within these cities might seem as rigid and unchanging as the stone that the dwarven houses are wrought from. In fact, it is. The love of stability dwarves have probably comes from the dwarves' long life spans, for dwarves can watch things made of wood and other mutable materials decay within a single lifetime. It shouldn't be surprising, then, that they value things that are unchanging and toil ceaselessly to make their crafts beautiful and long-lived. For a dwarf, the earth is something to be loved because of its unchanging nature, and the sea is a thing to be despised and feared because it is chaotic. Dwarves also prize wealth, as it is something that can be developed over a long period of time. All types of precious metal, particularly gold, are highly prized by dwarves, as are diamonds and other gems. However, dwarves believe that it is in poor taste to advertise wealth. Most other races see dwarves as a greedy, dour, grumpy folk who prefer the dampness of a cave to the brightness of an open glade. This is partially true. Dwarves have little patience for men and other short-lived races. Dwarves also mistrust elves because they are not as serious-minded as dwarves and waste their long lives on pastimes the dwarves see as frivolous. Dwarves speak both their own language, Dwarven, and usually learn the language of the nearest human settlements. Also, most every dwarf adheres to a system of worship centered around their ancesters and gods who look after them in the after life, usually referred to simply as Ancestralism by outsiders.
Dwarven societies usually have very strict and authoritarian type of governments. This is due to the fact that all dwarves are more apt to show fondness towards stability, than feel the need to protect civil liberties. Dwarven kingdoms are extremely lawful and rigid in their politics and there are two main bodies that govern the lives of non-ruling dwarves. At the top of these kingdoms, there is a terryn. He is their king and the undisputed ruler of the dwarves that lie within his territory. Below him are the Clan Elders. These male and female dwarves form a council that mainly serves as the leader of their specific clan. But these dwarves also serve as advisers to the terryn. The terryn rules with an iron fist, due to the fact that his clan was and still is known as the royal clan. They were once the greatest warriors and generals that led dwarven armies long ago and slowly they rose to the position of power over all the clans. Most terryns are the clans of the most valiant heroes of the Goblin Wars, a terrible time in dwarven history, as well as descendants of founding members of the city they reside. In territories outside of a dwarven kingdoms, cities are led by the Clan Elders.
In individual dwarven cities, there is a militia that helps to protect the citizens. This is because almost every dwarf, at least strong enough to hold a pickaxe, knows a little about how to wield a weapon effectively. These cities usually have a large hold in its heart, well fortified and well protected, it holds a vault full of the best weapons in the city, only to be brought out when the city is under attack. However, within the boundaries of a kingdom, there is the Stronghold Battalion. The Battalion is the military of the entire kingdom, a collection of the strongest warriors that the dwarves can forge. The Battalion is made up of that kingom's best soldiers, incredibly disciplined and trained to perfection with some of the most well-crafted weapons in the land. In kingdoms, the Battalion is also used as the city guards, usually being referred to as the "Terryn's will within his kingdom."
Dwarven territory simply pertains to the underground cities, villages, and smaller mining towns within the depths of the many mountains that litter our region, all connected by the massive network of tunnels and adjoining crossroads. Within these mountains is a vast network of tunnels broken up by various crossroads, mining outposts, or huge dwarven cities with stone buildings and giant columns of stone carved into statues of nobility, heroes, forgemasters, and the royals, or carved into the very palaces that some of these dwarves reside in. Dwarves are masters when it comes to manipulating metals and stone and this trait clearly shows through their stone structures, some of which date back to the very founding of the kingdom they are in and seem as though they were made just yesterday. Dwarves never use any precious metals or gems in their decorating. It is considered ostentatious and prideful. Most decorative additions to structures are made from marble or other fine stones and few metals that are easily available.