Deep-Dwarves; "Khurylan"

The Mountain-Dwarves; also called "Deep-Dwarves,"or "Khurylan," are the most common race of dwarves found on Corwyn.

Most Deep-Dwarves dwell in one of the three northern mountain ranges which make up the nation of Orrek. These dwarves prefer to wear drab, earthy colored clothing tones, and wear their meticulously trimmed beards quite long.

The Deep-Dwarves make up about 80% of the dwarvish population on Corwyn, and are the most commonly encountered dwarves seen outside of their own lands.

Bold and hardy, dwarves are best known for their skills as warriors, miners, stone-carving, and metal-working.


Dwarves are short, standing from 4'3" – 4'9" on average. What Dwarves lack in height they make up for in bulk; on average, they weigh as much as humans, anywhere from about 160 – 220 lbs. Dwarven males are slightly taller and heavier than their female counterparts.

Like humans, dwarves have a wide variety of skin, eye, and hair colors; most have gray, brown, or black hair, gray, brown or hazel eyes, and ruddy tan skin. Male dwarves often grow thick facial hair in the form of long braided beards, which are sometimes used to display their social status.

Dwarves are a long-lived race. traditionally, dwarves are not considered adults until they reach age fifty. Dwarves age much like humans but over a longer period of time, remaining vigorous well past 150 years. Most dwarves live to see their bicentennial, but few live to be over 300. There are stories about dwarves living for nearly 400 years, but this is extremely rare.

Deep-dwarves speak their own language; called Khurlish (humans sometimes call this tongue; "Hill-speak"). It is the official language of the realms of both Orrek and Kharos-Thûngol.



Dwarves are unusually tough and hardy, in many ways. For instance, they are resistant to virtually all poisons and recover from illnesses much faster than other races. Dwarves are also unusually strong for their size, with dense heavy bodies. This strength gives them the capacity to bear loads that other races near impossible. Dwarves also have a keen a sense of their surroundings; showing a keen sense for danger. This trait has long been quite useful for a subterranean race such as the dwarves.

Many dwarves are gruff and difficult to like. They lack the charm of many other smaller races, such as halflings or gnomes, although this is not a trait common to all dwarves. Furthermore, dwarves are not entirely unsocial and more than a few have a natural knack for bartering or judging the value of an offer, something that has long sat well with their legendary crafting abilities.

Having spent much of their existence underground, dwarves have long possessed the ability to see in the blackest darkness. Dwarves also have keen hearing and an almost supernatural affinity for recognizing unusual patterns in stonework.



Whether or not the dwarven claim that they were originally carved from stone is true, dwarves share many qualities considered similar to the stony surrounding in which they dwell. Strong, hardy, and dependable; dwarves are polite and many possess wisdom beyond that of many other races.

Dwarves greatly value tradition and look for inspiration from their ancestral heroes. Dwarves are also known for their stubborn nature, their cynicism and their greed; widespread traits which both contributed to and were commonly offset by their bravery and tenacity.

Dwarven friendship is hard to earn, but is strong once won. Naturally dour and suspicious, these stout folk are reluctant to trust others, specifically those outside their family, suspecting the worst of an individual until the outsider proved many times their good will. Once this trust was gained, dwarves hold their friends to it and view betrayals, even minor ones, with a vicious propensity for vengeance.

For dwarves, loyalty is more than a word and believe it should be both valued and rewarded. Dwarves believe it is a mark of respect to stand beside a friend in combat, and an even deeper one to protect that ally from harm. Many dwarven tales subsequently revolve around sacrifices of dwarves for their friends and family.

Just as dwarves are known for their dependability as friends and allies, dwarves also famously harbor grudges far longer than any other race. These grudges can be either on an individual basis or against entire races. Dwarven hatred of goblins is a well-known example.

Dwarves are careful and deliberate, with a more serious disposition than elves, who they sometimes viewed as flighty or reckless. A dwarf does all things with care and a stubborn resolve, with brash or cowardly behavior unusual for the race. However, dwarves do succumb easily to wrath or greed, which are the most common vices of their race.

Dwarves who leave their homeland to become adventurers do so for a number of reasons. In part, a dwarf might have been motivated by simple avarice, given the dwarven love of beautiful things. As often, however, a dwarf might have been motivated by a drive to do what was right for others (particularly their clan) or a love of excitement for, as settled as dwarves are, they rarely tire of thrills.

But even wayward dwarves retain the spirit of their brethren, hoping that their accomplishments abroad will bring honor to themselves, their clan, or both. Given that successful dwarven adventurers are likely to recover rare items or defeat enemies of the dwarven people during such challenges, this was a hope not entirely without merit.

Society & Culture


Dwarves highly value the ties between family members and friends, weaving tightly knit clans. Dwarves particularly respect their elders, from whom they expect sound leadership and the wisdom of experience, as well as ancestral heroes or clan founders. This idea even carries on to relations with other races; thus, dwarves can be quite deferential to the elders of other races.


Most dwarven societies are divided into clans built along family ties and political allegiances. These clans are usually led by hereditary rulers, often monarchs of a sort and descended from the founder of the clan. Dwarves strongly value loyalty to these rulers and to the clan as a whole. Most dwarves tend to side primarily with their kin, even over other dwarven communities.

These clan-structures have long promoted a tradition of inbreeding. This is so excessive, that it was considered the main reasons for the dwarves' low birth rate.

Most dwarven clans focus on one or two kinds of crafting, such as black-smithing, jewelry, engineering, or masonry. Dwarves strive to avoid overspecialization by sending some of their youth as apprentices to other clans, which also help to foster racial unity. Because of their long age, dwarven apprenticeships can last decades.


Most dwarves prefer living in underground cities near the surface and above the Underdark, built around mines that provided much of their livelihood. Carved into stone, these cities take centuries to complete but are practically ageless once finished. Although dwarves are typically a martial race by nature, these cities have civilian populations that compose about one fourth of the total population and which are made up primarily of the young, the elderly, or a few regular adults.

Even in their own homeland of Orrek, dwarves continue to carve out new living space, mining the riches of the Grey Mountains as they do so. Dwarves in general prefer the three mountain ranges of the Highlands, disliking travel, particularly along waterways, but those who lived near human lands could find themselves quite comfortable.

Most dwarves who live outside dwarven realms make a living as mercenaries, smiths, or artisans of various kinds. Dwarves are also eagerly sought after as soldiers; as their reputation for courage and loyalty makes them an excellent choices.


Interracial Relations

Dwarves do not forgive past wrongs easily and the entire race has more or less declared war on goblins and orcs as a whole, wiping them out wherever they find them. Most dwarves view these races as a foul infestation of their mountain homes and see it as their duty to purge them. Because of this, dwarves generally view related races, such as half-orcs, with distrust.

Because of ancient grievances; dwarves tale an extremely dark view of elves; seeing them as aloof and completely untrustworthy. It is rare for dwarf-elf friendships to arise, and rarer still for those friendships to be accepted by other dwarven folk. Any dwarf will tell you that the elves betrayed the dwarves long ago, in an incident referred to as the "Gravest Insult."

Dwarves get along well with gnomes, with whom they share a love of fine crafting, and passably with humans, half-elves and halflings. However, most dwarves commonly believe that true friendships can only be forged over long periods of time and a common saying was that “the difference between an acquaintance and a friend is about a hundred years,” meaning that few members of the shorter-lived races ever forge strong bonds with dwarves.

There are exceptions, however, and some of the strongest friendships are those between a dwarf and a human whose grandparents and parents were also on good terms.