The gnomes, a rather underestimated race, is a marvelous combination of the strong qualities of the dwarves, with the fun-loving free spirits of the woodland creatures. It is their spirited nature that leads others to see them as little more than an entertaining, bearded halfling. In actuality, gnomes have rich heritage, well developed crafts of all sorts, and a natural adept for illusion magic make gnomes a foe few wish to fight. Gnomes are as hearty as their dwarven cousins, and are as nimble as their halfling brethren. Gnomes are far more cimplex than their outward appearance would suggest, and most outside their race rarely have the pleasure of learning about all the many traits, both mundane and magical, that make the gnomes such an intricate and complicated race. Gnomes often find themselves becoming accustomed to being treated as a child in groups mainly composed of taller races. This due to the Gnome's unending need for entertainment. But this judgement is rooted in ignorance of the true nature of the gnomes. Gnomes actually are just dedicated to a tradition of innovation. Gnomes love doing new things, new experiences, changing old and outdated ways of doing things.
Gnome civilization is relatively simple. Most gnomes, curious by nature, prefer to live in small communities deep within hilly areas. Gnomes communites usually consist of several gnome families, centered around a powerful merchant lord and his family. When gnomes settle within another race's city, merchant lords tend to be the representative of the gnome community that inevitably settles near them. The merchant lord usually owns the land the gnome sub-community is settled in and all these gnomes are employed by the merchant lord. However, within entirely gnome communities there is usually no more than 200 members, in the very most, nestled deep within a field of hills, brush, and scattered trees. Gnome towns are usually unseen to those who do not live in them, and if they do not want you to find them, you won't. Because of this, there are very few maps that actually mark the locations of gnome towns. Gnomes speak their own language, Gnomish, and usually learn the language of the local human settlements, as well as dwarven if they encounter them on a regular basis. Additionally, though religion is much less strict or even thought of among gnomes, most every gnome adheres to the teachings of Qerimism, which was a system of beliefs written down by an "enlightened" gnomes named Qerim.