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The dwarves of Ansalon are a tough humanoid race of diligent workers. During their history three major subcategories developed: Hill, mountain, and gully dwarves. They are also organized into seven clans: Neidar and Klar of the hill dwarves, Hylar, Daergar, Daewar and Theiwar of the mountain dwarves and Aghar encompassing the gully dwarves. The so-called Kingdom of the Dead, made up of all dwarves who have died, is considered the 8th clan.
Most dwarves encountered on the face of Ansalon are hill dwarves.
The history of the dwarves is a rich and full story. From their initial creation of the legendary kingdom of Kal-Thax, to the Great Halls of Thorbardin, dwarven civilization has fought against countless foes and for endless causes.
The dwarven race were created during the Age of Dreams. A large population of Gnomes had been pursuing the Greytone of Gargath. Upon finding the stone, the gnomes were split in two about what was to be done with it. One group wanted to lock the beautiful stone away for safe keeping. The other half wanted it split open out of curiousity. A large fight broke out and the magic of the gem transformed those gnomes seeking to hoard the gem away into dwarves, and those wishing to crack it open into kender. Dwarves vehemently deny this, maintaining that they were created in the image of their great god Reorx.
Regardless of their origins, during 3200 PC, the dwarves began establishing a new civilization at Kal-Thax, located in the northeastern part of Ansalon. During the next two centuries, the dwarves labored hard to forge a new homeland out of Kal-Thax, a name which was used for various other dwarven settlements as well.
Following the Graystone War of 2900 PC, the dwarven warrior-lord Agate Thorwallen created a new colony for the dwarves in the Khalkist Mountains. It was initially named Hiel-Thax, but the name was quickly replaced by Thorin. Here the dwarven settlers would discover a natural fissure containing a firewell. The firewell contained the source of natural heart that the dwarves used to make raw materials into their highly prised finished goods.
Every spring, the dwarves of Thorin celebrated Balladine, a festival marked by trading with the local human settlements. During the last Balladine humans infiltrated the keep and caused mass chaos. After the attack, the dwarves of Thorin split into two groups, the Calnar (who would remain behind in Thorin) and the Hylar who left.
Ten years later, the Hylar arrived at a settlement also named Kal-Thax and met the dwarven clans of the Daergar, Daewar, Theiwar, Klar and Aghar who came together and formed the mighty kingdom of Thorbardin. During the building of Thorbardin, some dwarves decided to live outside and became known as the Neidar or Hill Dwarves. Despite living outside of Thorbardin, these dwarves maintained representation inside the Kingdom and were effectively a part of it.
In 1900 PC the dwarves of Thorbardin and the elves of nearby Qualinesti signed a treaty known as the Swordsheath Scroll. As part of the pact the two races worked together to construct the fortress of Pax Tharkas, which would be manned by members of both races.
Thorbardin survived the Cataclysm relatively unscathed, although problems would arrive later. The Hill Dwarves who had chosen to live outside of Thorbardin during its founding, demanded to be allowed to enter the kingdom, since their lands were now being ravaged by ogres, humans and goblins. The Mountain Dwarves, led by King Dugan refused them however, due to an immense shortage of food which would result in the starvation of both Mountain and Hill Dwarves if Dugan allowed them back in. The Hill Dwarves led by Reghar Fireforge allied themselves with the human army of the dark wizard Fistandantilus and attempted to invade Thorbardin. They were defeated by the Moutain Dwarves, but the scars of the conflict would take a long time to heal. After the death of King Dugan, the kingdom became divided since no other king was strong enough to claim the throne and the vaunted Hammer of Kharas was lost.
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