Rock gnomes were a curious, childlike race very much unlike their cousins, the svirfneblin (or deep gnomes) and the forest gnomes. When most people thought of gnomes, they were thinking of the rock gnome. Rock gnomes embodied the characteristics of their creator and patron deity, Garl Glittergold, choosing to spend their long lives by filling each day with as much fun and enjoyment as possible.
Rock gnomes were typically between 3 to 3½ ft (0.91‒1.1 m) tall and weighed anywhere from 40 to 45 lb (18‒20 kg). They possessed a natural brownish tint to their skin; the presence or absence of light had little effect upon it. Young rock gnomes possessed any of a large number of hair colors that faded to gray or white upon reaching adulthood. Male gnomes typically kept beards groomed in a neat manner.
Rock gnomes possessed many of the traits of other races, particularly humans, attributed to children. Most rock gnomes enjoyed life to their very fullest; asking questions endlessly, playing pranks on friends and strangers, and finding new and interesting hobbies were just a few of the countless chores that rock gnomes burdened each day with. Much like a child, a rock gnome possessed very little tolerance for long term mental focus unless the task at hand was of notable interest.
While their joyful, child-like viewpoint of life gave the impression that a rock gnome would be incapable of achieving something as mundane as physical labor, rock gnomes managed to use their keen intelligence to turn something as generally unexciting as work into a fun and enjoyable expenditure of their time and energy.
Rock gnomes gathered in small towns, rarely reaching 500 adults. They considered large cities to be uncomfortable, partially because of the great amount of demand the Big Folk had for their skills. Rock gnomes were comfortable deep underground almost as much as on the surface world, possessing skill in ore and gemcutting that surpassed that of the dwarves, along with notable skills in toymaking and clockwork engineering. Rock gnomes were also the finest producers of the unusual weapons known as "guns."
Rock gnome homes were burrows, small but clean cave-like carvings into stone and hillsides. Married gnome couples had rooms for each to use, though rock gnome children generally slept together in a single room. Rock gnome burrows were constructed by clan, allowing underground tunnels to conjoin one another for defense and other purposes.
Although rock gnomes could theoretically be of any alignment, the majority of rock gnomes, as a culture, leaned towards neutral good. Rock gnomes would aid someone in need and oppose all who would impose their will upon those weaker than them.
Rock gnomes typically possessed a nonchalant reverence of their chosen deity, bringing up the name of their god in any form of conversation as if they were referring to a friend. Rock gnomes rarely went to church and had no particularly great amount of zeal towards the worship of their pantheon of gods. In typical gnomish manner, the gnomish gods required no particularly impressive display of faith, being more interested in following their own admittedly mundane agendas.
Relations with other races
Rock gnomes were especially easy going with dwarves and halflings, especially those who appreciated a good joke. They were typically more cautious and subdued around the Big Folk (humans, elves and the other medium size humanoids), taking a considerably longer time (a day longer, perhaps) to consider them a friend and ally. They considered all forms of goblinkin to be extremely untrustworthy and gave them a very wide berth if possible.
Rock gnomes roamed the lands of Faerûn far and wide, using their impressive natural intelligence as inventors, mages, and other positions which required mechanical aptitude or just sheer knowledge of their surroundings. Rock gnomes who chose to study the paths of arcane magic typically chose the school of illusion, which they often used to enhance storytelling or defending their small villages from goblinoid attack. Rock gnomes were also found commonly in the Western Heartlands, the Dalelands, and the woodlands between the Great Dale and Thesk.
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