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Burghal Gnome Cultures

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The Withycombe Bloodline:

The gnomes of Bloodline Withycombe descend from the original burghal gnomes, who left the forests for the shelter of the Human Empire. They reside in brick-lined compounds deep underground, and they often serve host families as expert gardeners and housekeepers. Their attention to detail and manual dexterity makes them skillful tailors and jewelry makers--as well as expert thieves. The true calling of the Withycombe gnomes lies in mechanical design and tinkering, however, as they compensate for their diminutive stature with elaborate labor-saving devices. A cheerful people, the Withycombes delight in toys, gems, and poetry (however bad).

The Winedotter Bloodline:

The gnomes of Bloodline Winedotter live beneath the cities of the elven nations. Individual families of gnomes serve particular families of elves, and they take the role of servant very seriously (many wear livery marked with their elven family's crest). Their passion is winemaking and wine tasting, though Winedotter gnomes are also famous for their clocks and music boxes. A matriarchal society, the Winedotters are particular devoted to female Arkati, and to those lesser spirits who act as servants to the Arkati. Others among the bloodline serve as mystics, using starstones to read the past and future.

The Aledotter Bloodline:

The gnomes of Bloodline Aledotter live outside the caverns of the dwarves, often sneaking inside to glean information about metallurgy and forging. Aledotter gnomes supply the other bloodlines with metals and weaponry; over time this role has expanded to encompass the entire inter-bloodline trade. These gnomes are particularly proud of their size, believing that it gives them an advantage over larger, clumsier races; as a result, Aledotter women are known to choose their mates on the sole basis of stature. Aledotter gnomes rarely worship the gods on a personal level, though respect for Eonak and Gosaena is deeply embedded into their cultural lives.

The Nylem Bloodline:

The gnomes of Bloodline Nylem love nothing better than a good joke, preferably at someone's expense. Where Withycombe gnomes act for the good of their hosts, the Nylem undermine with dirty tricks. They often select targets who deserve punishment for some failing or flaw, but in other circumstances these merry pranksters act with no moral purpose at all. Most Nylem are profoundly irreligious, though Cholen and Jastev receive respect. The cultural life of the bloodline surrounds the roast, and no acquaintance of a Nylem gnome is spared their caustic wit.

The Vylem Bloodline:

The gnomes of Bloodline Vylem are the proudest of their race, and they brook no disrespect from other gnomes. Worshippers of the Lornon pantheon with a special devotion to Eorgina, the Vylem are ruled by adolescent queens whose every whim is law. Vylem men always defer to Vylem women, who tend to be imperious as a result. Many Vylem men chose a life of chastity, for reasons best left unsaid. Along among the burghal gnomes, the Vylem are self-sufficient, believing it demeaning to work for--or even steal from--the other (inferior) races.

The Neimhean Bloodline:

The gnomes of Bloodline Neimhean live in silence and shadow, in and among the larger burghal bloodlines. A society of assassins and thieves, the Neimhean mask their identity from all but fellow initiates. The very name "Neimhean" is anathema to all but the Rosengift gnomes, who supply the group with poisons. Rarely will a gnome tolerate the presence of a Neimhean, even one who renounces membership in the group. So vicious and permanent is the revenge taken on oathbreakers that one may safely assume that a gnome who speaks openly about Neimhean cultural practice is a fraud.



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