Dark-Elves (the Drothë)

The Dark-Elves of Corwyn are also commonly known as Drow, Drotharum, or Drûlka. These evil elves are extremely rare on the surface and are usually killed on sight by surface humans, dwarves and especially other elves. These elves have silver, gray, or white hair, black, gold, or red eyes, and jet black skin. Most Dark-Elves reside in the vast underground realm of Drotharë, but can be found throughout the Underdark. These elves are physically very similar to surface elves in build and facial expression, but their skin coloring and their evil ways easily set them apart from other elvish races.



Dark-Elves are, on the whole, sadistic , treacherous, and destructive. They view themselves as the rightful heirs to Corwyn, and still remember the great surface empire in the East they controlled many millennia ago. Dark-Elves still feel the the sting they perceive as the injustice of being driven from their home and under the ground. They hate other races, especially the other sub-races of elves. Most wish to make war upon other elves and destroy them, and view all other races with contempt who and tolerate them only as necessary for trade or temporary military allies. Even among their own kind, Dark-Elves are cruel and suspicious. There is little room for love and friendship in their society. They may value alliances with other family members or acquaintances, but none really trusts each other. Dark-Elves only forge alliances when they know they are more powerful than their 'ally,' and usually possess blackmail worthy knowledge or share a common enemy that overrides their mutual hatred. Even then, the Dark-Elves keep their eyes open for the slightest hint of treachery. The motto of the Drothë may as well be "Do onto others before they can do onto you."

Most Dark-Elves worship the Spider-Queen, the deity of their religion. The Spider is their symbol. The Dark-elf society is matriarchal and most high-ranking females are priests of the Spider-Queen. Feared and reviled throughout the Lands Above, the drow are perhaps the most numerous, powerful and widespread of the Underdark's native peoples. The majority of the dark elves live in city states ruled by various noble houses. Each House commands its own small army of fearless drow soldiers, cunning wizards, and zealous priestesses, as well as large contingents of slave soldiers, such as Bugbears, ogres and minotaurs. In fact, half to two-thirds of any drow city's population consists of humanoid slaves and rabble, all of whom are subject to the cruelty and whims of any passing drow.



Dark elf city-states lie below dozens of surface realms, often unbeknownst to the surface dwellers who live above them. The rulers of some drow cities prefer to leave the surface races alone and turn their attention toward gaining power through the endless scheming and feuding of the noble Houses. Others, however view the surface lands as theirs to pillage and plunder whenever they choose.

Personality: Most drow are cruel, arrogant and hedonistic. Their eternal game of advancement at the expense of others, which is encouraged by the spider goddess herself, has transformed dark elves into a race of scheming backstabbers eager to increase their own stations by pulling down those ahead of them and crushing their inferiors underfoot. Drow trust no one and nothing, and most are incapable of compassion, kindness or love. Many dark elves are actively murderous and delight in the giving pain. While dark elves neither honor their promises nor maintain personal loyalties once it becomes inconvenient to do so, their pride lends them a certain sense of style and an appreciation of subtlety. Drow can be courteous and urbane, even to deadly rivals. They enjoy surrounding themselves with things of beauty, giving hardly a thought to the cost. Any drow city features breathtaking architecture and elegant revels marked by dark and delicious entertainments, but only a fool would lower his guard in such an environment.

Physical description: The skin of a drow can be any shade from dark gray to polished obsidian. His hair can be pale yellow, silver or white and his eyes can be almost any color, including blood red. Drow are short and slender compared to other Corwyn Elves, but they are strong for their size. Most dark elves especially nobles, are strikingly handsome individuals. Lolth does not favor meek, plain or unassuming worshipers.

Relations: Drow regard all other races as inferior. Some they view as potential slaves, others as deadly vermin to be exterminated. None, however, are considered truly equal to the dark elves. Drow maintain a grudging respect for duergar and mind flayers, since the gray dwarves and Illithids also build powerful cities and have demonstrated the strength to stand up to repeated assaults from the dark elves. Though they despise humans and all other surface folk as weak creatures, the drow save their true venom for surface elves, particularly sun and moon elves. The dark elves hate their kinfolk with a blind passion and seize any chance to strike at their ancient enemies.

Society: Drow society is strongly matriarchal, with females holding all positions of power and responsibility in government, the military, and in the home. Males are effective fighters, and can become priests and wizards of minor power. Outside drow communities, they are rarely encountered without female commanders. Male-commanded drow groups are generally either streeakh, suicide squads, or are dobluth (outcasts) who have rejected the traditional authority-structure of the drow. Social station is the most important thing in the world of the drow. Ascension to greater power is the ultimate goal in drow society. Assassination is the preferred tool in this job. It must be used discreetly in the city setting, for to openly murder or wage war (on a rival House) brings down the merciless might of drow justice (not because of the act itself, simply as punishment for the boorish act of fighting in public). Outside the patrol-range of cities, however, might is right, and Houses and merchant clans often battle each other openly in the wild Underdark.



Alignment: The great majority of drow are evil through and through and most tend toward the chaotic end of the lawful-chaotic spectrum. In general, drow believe in doing what they want to do, when they want to do it.

Religion: Most drow cities are dominated by priestesses of Lolth, the Spider Queen. As the special patron and protector of the dark elves, Lolth demands abject obedience and unflinching ruthlessness from her followers. Drow who have turned away from the Spider Queen are rare, but they do exist. Good aligned drow often worship Eilistraee, the Dancing Maiden. Evil drow who choose not to subject themselves to Lolth's tyranny may worship of of the other deities of the drow pantheon, such as Vhaeraun or Ghaunadaur.