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Gnomes in Middle Earth ?

EJ Womble (30/05/02)
To All:
What do you think about this:
Myth of the Gnomes
Many a dwarf remembers well, from his/her childhood days, the severe scoldings they would receive from their
parents or an elder in their tribe followed, time and again, by the ominus warning "If you don't behave, the
Gnomes will come and take you away!"
The "gnome" is to a dwarf as the "boogie-man" is to man (or any imaginary, threatening, being is to any other
race). But like so many myths and legends from times long since past, sometime these "imaginary" threats are
based on long forgotten truths...
History of the Gnome Race
During the dawn of the 1A when the dwarven race was awaken from their long sleep and the Seven Fathers
divided their tribes to go their seperate ways, an Eighth Father was left to slumber a bit longer. When he awoke
he was consumed with jealousy and anger toward the Seven Fathers who had already settled their tribes in the
best lands, leaving so very little for his own tribe. He vowed revenge against all the Seven Fathers for having
forsaken him and took his people underground, here to live in darkness for all time - as far from the Seven
Fathers as he could travel.
Deep in the earth the Eighth Father found a place unspoiled, filled with all manner of riches in the form of silver,
gold, mithril and precious gemstone. Here he built his peoples home "Rock Dome" and began to build a horde of
great wealth. Soon his tribe began to flurious and spread with new tribes springing up where every the earth's
treasures were in great abundance.
The Eighth Father named his people "gnomes" and with the passing of time they became a different race - appart
from the dwarves of the top world. They became hairless and pale of skin. Their vision in the dark had become
great, their teeth sharp and pointed, their backs gnarled and twisted. They were gifted like no dwarf had ever
been in the ways of metallurgy and magic, crafting great works of metal and stone.
But they had grown jealous of the Fathers above. Evil had crept into their nature - for they were greedy and foul,
eating the flesh of other races who travelled to deep below the earth. Curses became their special art and they
were woven into many of their greatest works. When the Seven Fathers began to delve into the earth for its
riches, the gnomes felt violated, for the realm beneath the surface was promised to them and them lone by their
Father, long ago.
War errupted, the likes of no other the dwarves had ever known. Gnomes would tunnel into their great houses
and attack them in their sleep, killing all - man, woman or child - without mercy or conscience, weilding cursed
weapons of great power and unbriddled dark magics. They would further eat the flesh of their victims and carry
off their heads and children!
The Seven Houses united and genocide was declared upon the Gnomes of Rock Dome and all its people were
hunted to extinction before the dawn of the New Age (2A).
And so now, only myth and legend remain, among most dwarfs "gnomes" never really existed - only in fairy
tales and stories to frighten misbehaving children...
But not all the gnomes were found and killed, in that time, long, long, ago...

There numbers have been steadily increasing over the years in the ruins of their buried and long forgotten
home...
Now, they are ready to, once again, make their presence known to the world above and revenge themselves upon
the dwarves...
"If you don't behave, the Gnomes will come and take you away!" Be afraid, be very afraid...
Note: just to add a little spice to what was turning out to be a quite "boring" episode in a 4A campaign I was
running, I dropped my PC's down a concealed pit (in dense forest) into, what appeared to be, a long abandoned
tunnel leading deep underground. Curious, they followed it and were eventually captured by gnomes, who
marched them to Rock Dome to meet with their King and a festival was held in their honor - of course they had
no idea that they were the main dish!
The name of this adventure is the Gnomes of Rock Dome and it turned out to be one of my more interresting
dungeon/adventures!
Steve Lannigan (30/05/02)
EJ
I quiet like this bogey man story - has a nice feel to it. Question is - how much is truthful? I expect that many
Dwarves in Khazad-Dum have never seen the light of day - but this doesn't give them fangs, lose their hair and
make them pale. However, with just a slight modifier this could work quiet well. For example, it documented
that the Dwarves of Khazad-Dum mined a metal substance that was obviously radio-active in it's origin for it
'made them sick and their hair fell out'. They (for obvious reasons) refused to mine this substance but that doesn't
mean that another tribe far from Khazad-Dum hadn't found their kingdom near a similar type substance. This
would over long term have the effects of much of what you describe and would have a profound effect on their
Dwarven phycology.
I suspect that the 'Eighth Father' thing would be something that the Dwarves added to legend to spice up the
story a bit as would be the 'advanced technology' (although Dwarven nature is such that they would begrude
giving any non Dwarves the acolade of being more technologically advanced than themselves).
EJ Womble (30/05/02)
Steve,
A lot of that "Gnome History" is, as you might have guessed, a bit embelished - it's really just made up from
what myths and legends can still be recalled by the dwarves and as such may not be too accurate.
You are more than welcome to make suggestions to "flesh" out the facts from the fiction - I made up gnomes for
my campaign in the 4A and had a good idea about their origin, but I'm afraid I never took the time to go into
great detail on their history.
The description I gave may have been a bit harsher than the reality (they look more like dwarves than not, a bit
paler than most and far less hairy. I've always imagined their teeth being pointed or more jagged than most other
races - except for orcs... the rest I'll leave to your imagination since they really haven't been seen in the flesh
since before 2A!).
Thanks for your comments! :)
George Photopoulos (30/05/02)
I suggest you use a different name, since gnomes is associated with the Noldor in some of Tolkien's unpublished
texts.....
EJ Womble (30/05/02)
George,
Have any alternate name suggestions - like "Gnolls" or perhaps something else? This topic is open for
discussion, nothing difinitve has been developed thus far and any suggestions and information you can provide
in this area is welcomed. :)

Steve Lannigan (30/05/02)


I like the idea of this Gnome thing. Whilst the actual mechanics of it can be discussed the seeds are fairly good.
Remind me somewhat of the 'Petty Dwarves', but with a twist.
EJ Womble (30/05/02)
Steve (and All),
It has been suggested that the name "Gnomes" be changed to somthing else - since in some of Tolkien's
unpublished works the Noldor were also refered to as "Gnomes".
Do you believe that the name should be changed (to perserve any precedence set forth by Tolkien in his writings
- publshed or not) or is the name OK (I would rather there not be any confusion in the matter)?
What do you think?
Steve Lannigan (30/05/02)
I think that any reference to the Noldor as Gnomes should remain strictly unpublished. Gnomes are (sort of)
recognised for what they are (and this is Not Noldor) and this makes their 'Dwarven' connection more plausible
and realistic. To call them something different would be in effect just adding a new race of 'Petty Dwarves'
whereas I don't think this is what EJ had in mind when he wrote his stuff. I like the legend and with a bit of
tinkering it could be worked. Whether these Gnomes are stuff of legends or some radiation sick small tribe of
Dwarves is not all that important (relatively), but the folklore thing I can quiet dig (excuse the pun).
Cory Rushton (30/05/02)
It all depends, I guess. I'm inclined to allow multiple meanings for the same word, because I feel ME is big
enough to handle it. If you don't use the early texts, it wouldn't matter much, and "Gnomes" is fine.
If you say (as I do) that most of JRRT wrote is available to PCs as "alternate" (often incorrect) versions of the
history, you might have more of a problem. But there are so many peoples in ME that the Dwarves of one tribe,
for example, shouldn't be constrained to rename their legend because of some obscure Noldorin text where they
call themselves "Gnomes."
Let's have two types of "Gnomes." The real world has words that mean more than one thing. They're called
"homonyms." ;)
Steve Lannigan (30/05/02)
There is a certain sense of irony that a twisted dwarf type people should also be named as High Elves. Did the
Dwarves name the Gnomes (in mockery)?
EJ Womble (30/05/02)
Thanks Steve and Cory,
Unless there are other numerous objections voiced at some later date - Gnomes it is!
I'd rather hoped the name would stick - the name was, of course, the whole reason behind the creation of this
dwarven folk lore.
Again, thanks for your input and support. :)
EJ Womble (30/05/02)
Steve,
I never gave it much thought (but I doubt it). Funny you should mention it though - since dwarves have a certain
disdain for elves (in general).
To call a dwarf "petty" or a "gnome" must be a major insult - don't you think? :)

Gabriele Quaglia (30/05/02)


Hi EJ,
good idea indeed. Impossible in part (alas!) but really interesting.
First, Tolkien used the word Gnomes, but he referred to Noldor (Gnomes comes from the Greek root of
knowledge, being a good English translation for Golodhrim, Wise-people). I guess you refer to the Petty
Dwarves, or Noegyth Nibin, that Tolkien shows in the Lay of the Children of Hrin (read it in Sil and Lost
Tales).
I think Tolkien never meant to detail further, and this is an interesting field of discussion. I think that your story
is perfect to be told by the Petty Dwarves themselves, or even by ignorant Dwarves. Of course, as we all know,
the Dwarf Fathers were 7, and it is unlikely that Aule forgot one, or simply didn't care about him.
The Petty Dwarves are a corrupted people: in this I could envisage the work of Shadow, albeit uncomplete (they
are not evil, just weird). It is possible that they were a half-people like the Umli, or common Dwarves who mate
between themselves.
Also, Steve's idea about Celebur (S. "Uranium"), a metal known by Sauron, and capable of making alloys of
exceptional powers. I can suggest that Sauron trained dwarves in this crafts, without talking about side effects.
The survivors were twisted in body (and therefore mind), and became the outcast Petty Dwarves. Also, soon they
lost their knowledge of magical alloys, becoming more rangers than smiths. Perhaps the origin of the Eight
Father legend has a Morgothic or Sauronic origin:
"Aule crafted you FIRST. Then he made seven younger brothers. Coveting your firstborn rights, they convinced
Aule that you were unworthy of him. But you are the original children of Aule: you deserve to take the
possessions and revenge upon your younger brothers!"
Now that I think, I'm sure LOME III suggests something (Eric? What do you think?)
George Photopoulos (30/05/02)
Not gnolls, they're supposed to be humanoids with dog heads, aren't they? The gnomes otoh are an offshoot of
the Dwarves, right? Let me think about it, and I'll try to come up with a name suggestion.
Jason Alexander Lowman (30/05/02)
Well, in D&D gnolls are canine humanoids, but I believe in RMSS/RMFRP gnolls are more like small hobbits,
but I don't know much about them. I have one in the party I'm in right now, and he's a little guy, about 3 feet tall.
But I think we've established that gnomes would be a fine name. Even though the Noldor may be refered to as
gnomes somewhere, it's probably an obscure enough reference that it should still work. As someone mentioned,
there are plenty of words that have more than one meaning. It would be different if Noldo elves were always
refered to as gnomes.
Eric Dubourg (30/05/02)
Hi all,
These ideas about Petty-Dwarves and/or Gnomes and we should use them for a land of eastern or northern
middle earth. Why not the Illuin Bay ?
I love the idea of the Eight Father legend. The Gnomes could be related to the Dwarves, just like Umli and PettyDwarves.
I've downloaded a document about the Petty Dwarves which was originally published in the Adventurer Club
Magazine, which could be useful for Petty Dwarves or Gnomes in history.
EJ Womble (31/05/02)
To All:

So I take it that the idea of Gnomes in ME is an "acceptable" one to most of the memebers of our group. I further
take it that most members agree that they are more closely related to "Petty-Dwarves" than to normal dwarves
(perhaps an off shoot or even a particular "Petty-Dwarf" tribe, long forgotten) and that the history surrounding
their origin needs a little work (some like the Eighth Father idea and some do not, looking for something more
acceptable).
This is a good beginning for our discussion on the topic, perhaps with a concentrated effort from ALL we can
come up with a detailed history (folk tale/legend base) that is acceptable to most of the members of our
group.
Thanks for all the suggestions, ideas and insights offered thus far, keep those ideas rolling! :)
Jason Alexander Lowman (31/05/02)
I don't know how closely the Petty-Dwarves and 'regular' dwarves are related, or when the Petty-Dwarves
became a distinct group, so I can't say which is best. However, if you're going to keep some of what is 'known'
about gnomes legends, then their exact relation to dwarves and Petty-Dwarves and whether or not the 'Eighth
Father' thing is true or not is irrelevant. Now if someone insists that what is known is divided into both legend
and 'fact', then I honestly think it's probably overkill. Unless a part of the module/adventure consists of the PC's
discovering the truth. Still, I think it's a great place to start, so why not build on it? I also like the idea of Celebdil
(right, the metal that is radioactive) being what has 'twisted' the gnomes.
EJ Womble (31/05/02)
Jason,
Point taken.
Perhaps the "true" origin and history of the Gnome race should be shrouded in a little mystery (myth and legends
are often times more exciting to read about than actual facts), but I don't know how well this idea will go over
with the other members.
It seems that with most of the work others have done for the group alot of time and effort is paid to "details"
(filling in all or as many of the gaps as possible on a particular subject or topic) leaving very little to speculation
or self interpetation. It may be different with a myth or legend, however, but then again, the group may wish to
expose the misconceptions/inaccuracies of this unique folk tale, bringing to light the true "facts" which may, in
turn, kill the myth - "There is no real Santa Claus, he was just a man."
Personally, I kind of like the "mystery" which surrounds the Gnomes true origin (however, I am open to the idea
of creating a detailed history, as long as it sounds good...) :)
P.S. I don't care what anyone else says... there really is a boogie-man! (ha..ha..ha!) :)
Mike Berg (31/05/02)
Hi all,
I too like Gnomes in Middle Earth, I see them as Petty Dwarves or an off shoot of them.
In ICE's Lords of Middle Earth III, they tell how the Petty Dwarves broke away from the rest of the Dwarves.
( page 67 ) Bror Grimfist slew his older brother with one punch. Then he was banished from the city of
Tumunzahar, & with him went a small following. He founded the city of Nulukkizdin & other outlawed Dwarves
joined the community.
In ICE's "Over the Misty Mountains Cold" you meet Gnomes who are Petty Dwarves according to the text. Also
they are good, not evil, which brings me to my next thought. I think it would be good to have good & evil Petty
Dwarves.
In the two modules that ICE put Petty Dwarves in they all seemed evil. But in "Raiders of Cardolan" I think this
is not so. Some of the Petty Dwarves were just going along with the program. They were selfish but not all were
evil in my opinion.
In "Adventures Club" magazine, Issue # 11, there is an interesting article, "Petty-Dwarf Characters A New
MERP Character Race" by Jorge Quinonez Again it suggests to me some good Petty Dwarves too.
I would think the Petty Dwarves would prefer to be called Gnomes. ( Greek root of knowledge )

I wrote quite a lot on Petty Dwarf holds from the grand, ( in there standards ) to dirt poor (in Nurn ).
Also quite a bit of history of how they ended up at each sight. I believe there were three places that they lived in
according to the Silmarillion. I don't have my notes in front of me. I am in the process of getting them together.
Gnomes and Petty Dwarves
EJ Womble (31/05/02)
To All:
Just for the record, I always envisioned Gnomes as being a race seperate from Petty-Dwarves.
I kind of like the idea or notion that radiation may have played a part in the deformation of the Gnome race over
the passing of thousands of years.
It can also be used to explain the notion or belief that they wrought "curses" into their greatest works of metal
and stone (perhaps they were "radioactive", causing illness and/or death to any who possessed these items for too
long a period of time - the curse of the Gnomes!)
I also like the idea that perhaps the "Eighth Father" (and "yes" I am aware that only Seven Fathers were ever
mentioned) was kind of an older brother to the more "refine" seven younger siblings. Perhaps the Seven Fathers
were shown a certain amount of favortism by Aule, which in turn instilled jealousy and a sense of inequality in
the elder Father (who was being treated like a step child or "closet" relative no one speaks about or pays much
attention to). Perhaps Aule attempted to make amends for his mistreatment of the Eighth Father by offering his
tribe sole access to the lands and treasures of the Under Deeps - a promise broken by the Seven siblings when
they began to plunder the underworld for it's riches... food for thought).
What do you think?
Steve Lannigan (31/05/02)
EJ
It depends very much on what your trying to create? At some point the origins of Gnomes will have to be worked
out, but I would be a bit reluctant to mess about with Gods as it's always walking on thin ice. I always think that
one should try and rationalise something in the real world first and then add the mythe later (if indeed the 8th
father mythe is one your happy with). That way it makes the whole thing slightly more believable (and plausible)
and makes an excellent argument for their introduction.
Remember - messing with the Gods goes to the fundamentals of Dwarvin kind - and that can always be a bit
tricky.
EJ Womble (31/05/02)
Steve,
Got you (about the tinkering with Gods "stuff).
I was just pondering aloud, that is all... the Eighth Father is just a myth (really), a story handed down over the
ages which is most likely NOT true (a misconseption - a "cute" story).
Though the existance of Gnomes in ME was intended to be true (not a myth). :)
Thanks for your advice.
Gabriele Quaglia (31/05/02)
Hi EJ,

> Perhaps the "true" origin and history of the Gnome race should be shrouded in a little mystery (myth and
legends are often times more exciting to read about than actual facts), but I don't know how well this idea will go
over with the other members.
I take your point. I thought you wanted to detail, but if you want to stop at the legend it's OK (maybe even
better).
> Personally, I kind of like the "mystery" which surrounds the Gnomes true origin (however, I am open to the
idea of creating a detailed history, as long as it sounds good...) :)
I made my suggestion, keep it or trash it, as you will :-)
BTW, what's the difference bewteen Gnomes and Petty Dwarves?
EJ Womble (01/06/02)
To All:
Gabriele asked what were the differences between Petty Dwarves and Gnomes (a valid question which others
may be wondering about as well)?
I'm not an expert on Petty-Dwarves (I'm sure there are MANY in our group more knowledgable on the subject
than I), but I will try to explain the obvious differences in the two races as I see them (correct me if I'm wrong or
completely out of line - please!).
Petty-Dwarves
From what I've gathered and read about, Petty-Dwarves are in most ways like normal dwarves. They tend to be a
bit shorter - 3-4 foot in height (as opposed to 4-5 foot) - than normal dwarves, darker in complexion (less ruddy),
ill tempered, extremely selfish and self-centered (in most, but not all cases) and just down right mean and antisocial beings (except perhaps among their own kind - other Petty-Dwarves, that is), but not neccessarily "evil".
You could probably still pick one out of a line-up of average dwarves, but on a whole they look alot like normal
dwarves (this is the impression I get and is only my opinion).
Gnomes
Gnomes started out as normal dwarves - resembling the tribes of the Seven Fathers in ever way. Over the passing
of thousands of years, there appearence changed (why and how is left to speculation). They became significantly
"paler" than the average dwarf (in many cases appearing almost as albino), far less hairy, with many becoming
completely bald and hairless in the later years of their life. Their limbs and spines are often times misshapened
(even at birth), appearing gnarled and twisted. They are "corrupted" beings, evil by nature with no conscious or
compassion for any race other than their own. They have a deep rooted hatred of all people who live above
ground, but especially toward dwarves, whom they loathe and despise (were they always this way, it's hard to
say. I don't believe they started out as being "evil", I believe they were corrupted by someone or something
which warped and twisted their minds and bodies turning them into the vile creatures they are now). Deformaties
of bones, teeth and nails give many Gnomes the appearence of having spines, jagged or pointed teeth and claws.
It is said that in total darkness one can see a reddish glow eminating from their eyes.
It has been suggested that exposure to radiation over many generations is a plausable explanation for the Gnomes
current condition (is this the actual case, one can only speculate).
I'm sure there are significant differences in the social structure and religion of Petty-Dwarf and Gnome society
(when compared to that of normal dwarves), but for this discussion/comparison we will only focus on the
physical differences in the two (three) races.
As you can clearly see, Gnomes look nothing like Petty-Dwarves (I'm sure they act nothing like them as well).
I hope this helps to clear up (and not further complicate) thedifferences in the two races. If you have any
questions, feel free to drop me an e-mail.

EJ Womble (01/06/02)
Gabriele,
Did you catch my e-mail on the differences between Petty-Dwarves and Gnomes I sent out?
I don't want others to "feel uneasy" about the introduction of any of my ideas (if you don't like or care for them,
don't use them). Most of my ideas are aimed solely as game suppliments for MERP (I know that's not the main
aim of the fan-module group, but perhaps one or two of my ideas will be good enough to make it into one of
your world expansion modules).
I've been running MERP campaigns (off and on) since the game came out, so I have a lot of ideas developed for
the game... soe people will like, but most people will not - I'm trying to pick ideas that I think others in the group
might consider interesting and not too contriversal.
William Wilson (03/06/02)
> So I take it that the idea of Gnomes in ME is an "acceptable" one to most of the memebers of our group. I
further take it that most members agree that they are more closely related to "Petty-Dwarves" than to normal
dwarves (perhaps an off shoot or even a particular "Petty-Dwarf"
I think a little more research is going to need to be done on the topic of Gnomes. My understanding from reading
Lost Tales and other writings of Tolkien is that the term Gnome was an early term used for Elves not any type of
Dwarves. In some of the articles I've seen on the Elvish language Gnomish was close to the language of the
Noldor.
Oliver Schick (03/06/02)
Hi EJ,
I'm not very fond of the gnome history--I'd suggest the following:
You could explain the saying of Dwarvish parents to their children much better if you take it as referring to the
Elves (as has been noted, it was Tolkien's first name for what would become the Noldor), and thus to some of the
conflicts between Elves and Dwarves in the 1A. This would give this children's scare story a historical
dimension, which is often the case with 'bogey-man' stories, apparently.
As has been noted and as you agree, it makes no sense at all to invent an eighth father of the dwarves, as it's in
clear and unequivocal contradiction to Tolkien. As a false myth (contradiction in terms), it makes sense,
however. It must be the story that Morgoth told to his victims to make them justify their attacks on dwarves in
this way. I'd suggest to make the gnomes (though another name might be better--'gnomes' could, of course, be
used as the English translation of the Westron/Sindarin term, just like 'orks' was the English translation of the
very similar Sindarin word--so something similar in sound to 'gnomes' might be the Westron/Sindarin word) the
result of Morgoth's attempt to pervert the dwarves to his uses. Owing to their still implicit allegiance to his
greatest rival Aule, however, they were far too stubborn to obey him like whoever were the ancestors of the orcs
did. I'd suggest that they weren't cowed by Morgoth's command but preferred to die and be tortured rather than
be mass-bred and form his armies, so that he formed another plan, setting them free in order to wreak havoc on
their own.
In this way, you get an interesting parallelism with existing Tolkien stories; if the orks are somehow the product
of corruption of elves and men (we don't quite know who) and the trolls that of ents, then it's only logical that
Morgoth tried to corrupt some dwarves, as well--i.e., all of the Free Peoples. At the same time, it complements
the story of the Rings of Power, to which the dwarves, likewise, reacted in a different manner than men.
Having said that, I'm extremely un-fond of introducing new races into M-e--I don't like the Umli one bit, either.
If anything, I'd suggest that you make the 'gnomes' very few and far between, and not living in the areas mapped
by Tolkien, as this seems like the kind of invention only warranted by being beyond the boundaries of his
chronicle. But that's an opinion I can't support by any direct reference to Tolkien. Certainly, the 'gnomes' should
not really count as a separate race any more than the petty-dwarves did; they should be twisted dwarves, but not
totally unlike dwarves (which I don't think you intended, anyway.) I'd suggest a kind of parasitic
arrangement--'gnomes' should live close to dwarven dwellings, not have major cities of their own; they should be
engaged in their quest for vengeance with the necessary caution owing to their small numbers. But these are only
suggestions, see what you think of them.

Visually, I'd make them less different from other dwarves than you suggest--i.e., why pointed teeth? I don't think
that there is any 'evolution' in Tolkien's work apart from changes to the lifespan of men, which seems directly
due to grace, and Gollum's development, which is explained by his exposure to the One Ring. All other changes
in the makeup of creatures seem not due to 'evolution', but to direct intervention by a powerful being--which is
another reason why I'd suggest the 'gnomes' were bred by Morgoth rather than that they 'evolved' in the darkness.
I don't know what Tolkien thought of Darwin but, judging by his being a Catholic, probably not much.
> He vowed revenge against all the Seven Fathers for having forsaken him and took his people underground,
here to live in darkness for all time - as far from the Seven Fathers as he could travel.
He would have had to be angry at Iluvatar, who awakened the dwarven fathers, rather than the fathers
themselves. But this might be another distortion of the truth made by Morgoth.
Hope this helps,
EJ Womble (04/06/02)
Oliver,
I've been waiting (a bit impatiently and nervously) to hear your opinion (which I respect greatly) on the subject
of Gnomes in ME.
I expected you to totally hate the idea, it's nice, however, to hear instead that you are just "un-fond" of the idea. :)
About the name Gnomes, several members brought up the connection of its referance to Elves - particulaly the
Noldor - in Tolkien's early writings (which I'm sure you picked up on in our e-mail discussions on the
subject).The census was that the name Gnome would be OK to use - even you said yourself that this could be the
Westron translation of the word. However, I would like to come up with another name - like the Sindarin names
Naugrim (used for dwarves) and the Nibin-Noeg or Nibin-Nogrim (for petty-dwarves) - I'm not good with names
(in general) so would appreciate any help that could be provided in this area.:)
I like what you have suggested about the corruption of the Dwarven race by Morgoth and how this is the most
likely way the Gnome race came into being (while still keeping the idea of the "false" myth alive as a lie told to
his victims).
Pointed teeth are not important (though you could better explain them by saying that they were created by
"ritual" filing - I believe, but I'm not sure, that some primitive cultures in our world practiced something similar).
That is, of course, if you wanted to keep the "pointed teeth" image - but I can take it or leave it, again, it is not
that important.
Thanks for your constructive comments and critisms (and for not just "tearing" into the idea). :)
Oliver Schick (05/06/02)
Hi EJ,
> I've been waiting (a bit impatiently and nervously) to hear your opinion (which I respect greatly) on the subject
of Gnomes in ME.
sorry for the delay--I'll try to respond more speedily from now, but I'm still a bit stuck for time. Thanks for the
kudos--but bear in mind that like everyone I can be very wrong, too!
> I expected you to totally hate the idea, it's nice, however, to hear instead that you are just "un-fond" of the idea.
Well, I'd never use it in one of my campaigns, but given what ICE has introduced into M-e over the years, I
guess you become used to things ...
> About the name Gnomes, several members brought up the connection of its referance to Elves - particulaly the
Noldor - in Tolkien's early writings (which I'm sure you picked up on in our e-mail discussions on the
subject).The census was that the name Gnome would be OK to use - even you said yourself that this could be the

Westron translation of the word. However, I would like to come up with another name - like the Sindarin names
Naugrim (used for dwarves) and the Nibin-Noeg or Nibin-Nogrim (for petty-dwarves) - I'm not good with names
(in general) so would appreciate any help that could be provided in this area.:)
If you really want to keep the story, another name would be good; it should perhaps be something that Elvish
scholars called them when researching dwarves.
> Pointed teeth are not important (though you could better explain them by saying that they were created by
"ritual" filing - I believe, but I'm not sure, that some primitive cultures in our world practiced something
similar).
They still do--whether you'd call them 'primitive', though, is a matter of heated anthropological debate. I'm no
cultural relativist, but I certainly think that some aspects of our industrialised societies are considerably more
'primitive' than those of peoples living closer to nature. (I think some (western) 'Satanists' do it.) That said, I find
the idea of filing teeth simply abhorrent. It has been overdone a bit, though, especially in fantasy stuff I've seen.
Roberto Suarez (09/06/02)
On May/30/2002, MULTI-MAX@webtv.net wrote:
> Unless there are other numerous objections voiced at some later date - Gnomes it is!
I know it's a long time since that post, but I'm still getting "up to date" with the mail in this list :-)
I think that one of the good things that Tolkien world has is that most of the words seem natural, and common.
So, why shouldn't we use "Gnomes"? You can take it just as a name in Westron, given by the few people that
have seen these dwarves. And it fits quite well, IMHO.
So, though a bit late, I also think that "Gnomes" is a good name for these "petty dwarves with a twist" :-)
But what you should also do is find some kind of name in Khuzdul (and maybe even sindarin) for them. If
gnomes are part of dwarven folklore, surely dwarves have a name in their own tongue for them. And it's difficult
to think that elves don't have a name for almost anything that exists in Middle Earth :-)
My 2 cents of Euro, anyway.
EJ Womble (09/06/02)
Roberto,
At this time I'm still looking for other names for Gnomes in Khuzdul and Sindarin (perhaps something which
means "underworlders" or "folk from the Under Deep" - something along these lines.
If you (or anyone) have some other suggestions, please let me know. :)

Gnome history
EJ Womble (13/09/02)
Hi All,
I've been developing a few ideas to explain the origin of Gnomes, this is what I have so far (subject to change):
In Valinor Melkor had spies among the Maiar; they were his eyes and ears during the Elder Days when he
walked the lands of Middle-Earth in shadow and solitude alone after the departure of the Valar to the lands in the
West.
It was through these spies he first heard the rumor of the creation of the Seven Fathers by Aule who was all too
impatient for the coming of the Children of Iluvatar who he might instruct and teach his skills and crafts.
His spies told him that Iluvatar was not pleased by this and ordered Aule to put to rest the Seven Fathers,
somewhere hidden, deep down in the bowls of the earth, to slumber and await the coming of the First Born, at
which time they would be awakened.
This intrigued Melkor and seeded within him renewed thoughts of want, desire and jelousy for the works of
Aule, for he could not create such things by his own hands. He desired to know if the rumor be true and to find
the sleeping Fathers where they lay so that he might pervert them to the will and likes of his own mind before
they awakened in Arda.
So to the hidden forges of Aule he travelled, buried deep in the earth below Valinor, to discover the truth about
the creation of the Seven Fathers.
Silent and always hidden in shadow Melkor scoured through the forges searching for clues, until he found what
he had been desiring. In a large pile were heaped the discarded molds of seven small beings, upon the top of an
eighth mold which had been cracked and remained yet unopened!
(Aule had originally created eight molds for the Eight Fathers he had at first imagined, but during their creation,
one of the molds cracked, horribly twisting and disfiguring his creation within. To this creation he never gave a
second thought and discarding it, for he had not yet finished it nor had he breathed life into it and so it was as if
it were a broken vase kindled from the furnace.)
Melkor rejoiced and reveled in the find, and taking the smal vassel to his bosom, he departed Valinor for his
abode in Utumno, forgetting allabout his search for the Seven Fathers.
In Utumno he opened the metal form and breathed life into the creation it held and was delighted. To His
creation he gave the name Gnemlash, who would father a race the Seven Fathers would later name Gnomes.
Here he corrupted them thoroughly and through his lies and deceit installed within them a deep hatred for Aule
and the Seven Fathers who were soon to come. He taught them his crafts and skills, to rival those that would be
taught to the Seven Fathers by Aule and in Utumno they served him as slaves til the day the Valar came to the
great fortress and unroofed it's halls, capturing Melkor, their master, to lead him away in chains.
The Gnomes, freed from the slavery of Melkos, journeyed deep into the earth where they bred and established
many secret cities, among their greatest, from which Gnemlash and all subsequent Gnomish Kings would reign
was known as Rockdome in the common tongue.
END
Well, what do you think? OK, possible or NOT? Let me know your thoughts (as I am still fishing for
"acceptable" ideas about the origin of Gnomes in ME).
Jason Alexander Lowman(13/09/02)
I like the story EJ, but I do not believe Melkor can breathe life into a creation, that is why he had to breed and
twist things to make his minions. If I am not mistaken, Illuvatar alone has the power to create life because he
alone 'controls' the secret fire.

Can anyone out there confirm or deny what I'm saying?


Other than that, I really do like it. I think that it would work quite well. And I dare say it has a very 'Tolkien-ish'
feel to it.
Steve Lannigan (13/09/02)
I concur captain.
I still think EJ should go with the Radiation idea on these gnomes. Plausibility is the key - keep the gods out of it
(although nothing wrong with folklore)
EJ Womble (13/09/02)
Jason,
I too was under the impression that Melkor could not create living things, that he lacked a certain amount of
knowledge and skill that's why he warpped the work of others).
Now Aule obviously had the skill and knowledge (having created the Seven Fathers) and it is said the Melkor
and Aule were very much alike in craft and skill (the way they approached their work and labor in thought). I
figured in my story Aule had pretty much done all the work (on the Eighth Father), but didn't finish it because
because he wanted all the fathers to be "perfect" and because the mold had cracked on the Eighth he discarded it
and instead concentrated his efforts on the remaining Seven Fathers which were whole.
Melkor "finshed" and "breathed" life into the Eighth Father (which wasn't too difficult for him, since most of the
work which was beyond his skill, knowledge and understanding had been already completed by Aule any way)
and in this way "created" his first race of "followers" (children, servants, slaves, whatever one wishes to refer to
them as) which he had always sought to have.
Prior to his capture he cried out to his servants:
"Fly my children and let them not discover you, for surely you will be destroyed by them! Hide yourselves deep
within the earth, where even the Aule the Terrible can not discover you! Always travel South, for in the North
they will always be seeking those things I have created. Now go, multiply and prosper and remember well who,
above all others, are your enemies - the Seven Fathers and their creator Aule! Beware the many lies they will
weave to ensnare you, my children... loathe and hate them withall your hearts! NOW GO!!!"
Jason Alexander Lowman(13/09/02)
No, the dwarves would never have had life if Illuvatar had not given it to them. When Aule made the 7 fathers,
Illuvatar found out and was angry. Aule went to destroy them, but Illuvatar realised how much Aule loved his
creations (was Aule crying as he raised his hammer to destroy his creations? I don't remember) and decided to
give them life and allow them to become another race. However, he wanted the elves to come first, so he put the
7 fathers to sleep until after the elves awoke.
Now that I'm thinking about it, though, aren't the 7 fathers cowering and trembling when Aule raises his hammer
to smash them? That would seem to imply that they did, indeed, already have life. So now I'm questioning
myself. I haven't read the Silmarillion in years, so this is all coming from memory.
Can anyone help me (and EJ) out here??
Gabriele Quaglia (13/09/02)
Hello EJ,
> Well, what do you think? OK, possible or NOT? Let me know your thoughts (as I am still fishing for
"acceptable" ideas about the origin of Gnomes in ME).
Nice story.
I have one question: does the theft of the Eight Father happen before or after the meeting of Aule with Ilvatar?

As I remember, Ilvatar visited Aule, who tried to create life by himself, when the right to create it was left to the
One. Ilvatar compalined about the conduct of Aule, but still he let him keep the Dwarves, and later the One
gave them life, after the Awakening of the Firstborn. What about the Gnomes? In fact, there is no need to explain
it (who knows, after all?), but I wonder if it was Ilvatar who let Melkor steal the Eight Father, and later gave
him life...
EJ Womble (13/09/02)
Jason.
I believe the Seven Fathers were already alive and Aule had taught them the tongue of the Dwarves (Khuzdul)
before the hammer incident with Iluvatar.
Gabriele,
Melkor would have found the Eighth Father after Iluvatar had met with Aule and commanded that the Seven
Fathers be put to sleep util the coming of the First Born. How much time had passed between the meeting and
when Melkor visited the forges of Aule is not clear, it took time for his spies in Valinor to here about that
encounter and to also here that the Seven Fathers were put to sleep and not destroyed. Then that news had to
travel to ME where Melkor walked in solitude and shadow alone.
Jason Taylor (13/09/02)
> No, the dwarves would never have had life if Illuvatar had not
given it to them. When Aule made the 7 fathers, Illuvatar found out
and was angry. Aule went to destroy them, but Illuvatar realised how
much Aule loved his creations (was Aule crying as he raised his
hammer to destroy his creations? I don't remember)...
I believe it states that he 'wept'.
> ...and decided to give them life and allow them to become another
race. However, he wanted the elves to come first, so he put the 7
fathers to sleep until after the elves awoke.
> Now that I'm thinking about it, though, aren't the 7 fathers
cowering and trembling when Aule raises his hammer to smash them?
That would seem to imply that they did, indeed, already have life. So
now I'm questioning myself. I haven't read the Silmarillion in years,
so this is all coming from memory.
I believe it was when Aule noticed them cowering and trembling that
he realized that Iluvatar had given them life. Before that they were
little more than automatons, not able of independent action when
Aule's thoughts were elsewhere.
Jason Alexander Lowman(13/09/02)
> I believe it was when Aule noticed them cowering and trembling that he
realized that Iluvatar had given them life. Before that they were little
more than automatons, not able of independent action when Aule's thoughts
were elsewhere.
I do believe you're right, Jason. I was quite sure that only Illuvatar can breathe life into
something, but I was thinking perhaps there was a Tolkien dichotomy at work here.
EJ Womble (13/09/02)
Hi All!

Discovery of the Gnomes


It was quit by accident that the Gnomes were finally discovered by the Dwarves. No one had known of their
existence except for Melkor (though Aule had begun their creation and had nearly finished the work, the moment
he noticed the "flaw" in his creation, he discarded it and forgot all about it - one of many broken vases in his
life's work), though the dwarves had many legends about some "dwarf-like" race lurking in the shadows of the
Under Deeps, but they remained just stories and tall tales used to frighten unwary travellers/explorers of the
underworld and, of course, small unruly children who tended to wander astray and too far from home!
But to these legends were finally given a single name "Gnomes!"
The dwarves had unwittingly stumbled upon one of the Gnomes secret cities, buried deep in the bowls of the
earth. Upto now they had remained hidden, fearing that their discovery would mean their destruction (as their
former master and teacher Melkor had warned them). But now they had been discovered and even worse, by
their most hated enemy the Dwarves, who would surely tell all the Seven Fathers what they had found and
eventually this discovery would reach the ear of their creator Aule the Terrible!
This set in motion events which would ultimately cause their eventual annihilation.
Word of their discovery spread quickly among both the races (the dwarves and the gnomes) and fearing that Aule
had been searching for them since they escaped dicovery in Utumno and thus had sent the Seven Fathers to "hunt
them down to destroy them" they made war upon the dwarves of the Seven Great House, believing that heir only
chance to survive was to act quicker than the enemy while they still retained the element of surprise!
The gnomes knew well where the many houses of the enemy lay, for they had avoided them for many years,
attempting to hide fom them. Conversely the dwarves had no idea where the gnomes had built their many secret
cities and Rockdome, their capital and in this they were at a disadvantage when the war began.
It was vicious and the gnomes showed no mercy or conscious in their attacks against men, women and even the
children of the enemy (as they had been so thoroughly corrupted by Melkor and feared the enemies wrath).
Eventually Aule became aware of war which now existed between the Seven Fathers of his creation and another
much like the seven. It was then he first remembered the Eighth Father and realized that in discarding his
unfinished work he may have led to this folly! Away to his hidden forges he ran and in a pile of many discarded
molds of his creations he could not discover the Eighth Father !
The war progressed and the Houses of the Seven Fathers took suc terrible loses they feared they might be lost.
Where was this enemy, where were they coming from and how could they be stopped! They broke through all
manner of fortification with ease, possesing skills of engineering which far surpassed that of the Seven! Through
tunnels and pits they entered the great houses, killing all they could lay weapon to and stealing away the infants
and small children from within!
Aule new in that moment of discovery that Melkor had had a hand in the corruption and pervertion of his
discarded work, he had finished and tainted that which he had crafted in love to hate and loathe the Seven he had
finished. What lies and deceit had he perpetrated upon their newly fashioned minds? What hate and utter disdain
had been heaped and hardened upon their hearts to turn them thus against their true Father and Seven Brothers?
"Melkor! I curse you for the hurt you have wrought upon my creation!!"
The Seven Fathers gathered all their forces together to try and stop the atrocities which were befalling each of
their great houses. They cried to their father for aid:
"How can we fight an enemy we can not find Oh Father? Please, help us!"
Aule heard the cry of his children and knew in his heart what needed to be done. The decree was: Genocide for
the Gnomes! He would lead the armies of the Seven Fathers to each of their secret and hidden cities to destroy
them and unto their capital of Rockdome he would lay waste, few (if any) would escape the decree!
Aule would live up to the name Terriible given to him by the Gnomes!

Life to the Dwarves


To All,
It seems that the membership is right in this matter: that it was Iluvatar which finally gave to the Seven Fathers
of Aule's creation life.
So, it seems, I will have to find another "possible" story (or a way to "correct" my current story) for the creation
of the Gnomes.
Any ideas and/or suggestions you could offer me in this endeaver would be greatly appreciated.
Thanks for your input thus far (Jason, Steve and others).:)
EJ Womble (14/09/02)
Steve,
The radiation thing can still work and play into the history (after leaving Utumno the gnomes founded many
secret cities deep in the bowls of the earth, perhaps some of them were in or near promenantly radioactive areas maybe even their capital Rockdome was built upon a radioctive site!).
Who really knows (that is what I'm trying to discover, invent and/or create- a comprehensive history for the
Gnome race for use by interrested members).
I'm still open to ideas/suggestions revolving around Gnome history and the race (in general), so if you have any let me know!
Jason Taylor (14/09/02)
I'm thinking, that keeping creation as the sole providence of Iluvatar is pretty important...the 8th father idea is
going to be hard to fit in. It may be better to have Melkor 'corrupt' some of the first Dwarves, ala Elves-to-Orcs,
instead. This can still be made fairly tragic and early by having it be maybe the oldest son of one of the Seven
Fathers and his followers that were initial captured and corrupted.
Life to the Dwarves
EJ,
Aside from the corruption email sent previously...you could just note that the histories were in error and that
there were originally Eight Fathers brought to life by Iluvatar. Melkor pilfers one while sleeping and does his
nasties to him...and viola...Gnomes :). Dwarves mystical reverence of the number seven has just been a multieon screw up.
Nah...I like the corruption suggestion better :p,
Steve Lannigan (14/09/02)
Nice 1 EJ.
I think the Gnomes is a really nice idea. I'm not really into the Morgoth thing but that's really because I tend to
take a pratical approach to Middle-earth. I like to be able to explain stuff without relying too heavily on the gods.
Like you say though it horses for courses really. The most important thing is I think we all agree that they should
exsists (which given heated discussion lately isn't bad going!).
I'm well into the 7 Dwarven father stuff - which sort of counts me out of the 8th father theory - although to be
honest I haven't looked into with as much depth as obviously you have. 7 is also my favourite number.
Mike Berg (17/09/02)

Hi EJ, & All,


Why not have Morgoth back in the 1 st. Age or before, breed Gnomes in mockery of Dwarves.
But there had to be down fall with the experiment, otherwise he might have used Gnomes instead of orcs.
Gnome down falls would be a low birth rate, & worst of all not all Gnomes turned out to be evil. Gnomes were
more like humans in this respect. ( Free Will )
Even though he could influence the Gnomes & make most delight in evil things. There were always some who
were just plane good, & others who were caught up in their own desires. ( Not good or bad ) Morgoth not
wanting to create more free peoples opted to use orcs instead. He didn't abandon the evil Gnomes, & he taught
them to hate the Free Peoples.
Also to persecute any good or neutral Gnomes that were exposed. As a result any non evil Gnomes who weren't
slain would try to escape & lived alone or formed small communities as far away from Morgoth & the Evil
Gnomes as they could.
Hate Spam (17/09/02)
Weren't the dwarves and exception to that rule though (Only Illuvatar)? They were alive before, but had to be put
to sleep and wait when it was found out?
I'm forgetting any of the names and details, just remembering the story line vaguely.
Mike Berg (17/09/02)
Weren't the dwarves and exception to that rule though (Only Illuvatar)? They were alive before, but had to be
put to sleep and wait when it was found out?
I'm forgetting any of the names and details, just remembering the story line vaguely.
Hi all,
What I meant was to have Morgoth take living dwarves & breed into them the perversion he wanted. But it didn't
work as well as it did with the orcs.
EJ Womble (18/09/02)
Mike and All,
I've been re-thinking my Gnome history (taking into account what others have suggested) and this is what I've
come up with.
In brief (I don't want to add in all the details until the story is right):
The Two Trees are dead, the Silmarils stolen and Melkor (now Morgoth) has returned to the lands of MiddleEarth.
The Seven Fathers have awakened (I believe right before or right after the arrival of Morgoth in ME) and
establish their Great Mansions, among them Nogrod and Belegost in the Blue Mountains (the Ered Luin).
The Dwarves in Belegost begin trade with the Grey Elves (the Sindar) of Beleriand and become friend and ally
to Elu Thingol, King Greymantle of the Elves of Beleriand.
They help Thingol to build Menegroth and crafted for him a stockpile of their best arms and armor.
Orcs and other "fell beasts" fro the north invaded and attacked the elves of Beleriand, but were beaten back with
the help of the dwarves.
This is the first Morgoth has heard of the existance of the Seven Fathers in the lands of ME. He immediately sets
out to capture some to corrupt and pervert to his will and liking and these he will call Gnomes.
He deceives the Gnomes and corrupts their minds with lies about Aule and the Seven Fathers.

One lie (which has persisted to this day) is that they (the Gnomes) are the descendants of an Eighth Father who
was rejected by Aule for his imperfections and denied his birth right which was instead divided among the other
Seven Fathers.
The lies were many and in the end the Gnomes hated and loathed Aule and the Seven Fathers with all their heart
and soul.
At this time their numbers were few and their secret cities even fewer and so they could not act at once against
all the Seven Fathers to regain their stolen birth right, so their eyes were turned against one of the seven that
reigned in Belegost whom their Master (Morgoth) loathed the most (at this time for having dared to helped the
gery elves in Beleriand).
They attacked both Nogrod and Belegost in secrecy and with surprise, entering the Great Mansions through
tunnels and pit they had constructed.
The dwarves suffered great losses and eventually word reached the other Great Mansion who sent them aid
(Khazad-dum?),but they could not fight in ernest an enemy they could not find. They cried out to Aule, The
Father,for aid.
Aule, outraged at what Melkor (Morgoth) had done, decreed that all the Gnomes shall be destroyed, hunted
down and exterminated from ME and all Arda.
Genocide was his decree!
He would lead the armies of the Seven Fathers to the secret cities of the Gnomes (deep underground) to destroy
them and to their capital Rockdome he would lay waste.
So it was and few Gnomes manage to escape the decree and wrath of their most hated enemies.
Mike Berg (18/09/02)
Hi EJ,
What did you think of my idea of why Morgoth didn't use Gnomes more. Good Gnomes (This is why there were
good & bad Gnomes in human folk tales.) Also the low birthrate.
I forgot to comet on your idea.
I liked it, but they attacked two of the seven dwarf kings if they attacked both cities.
Are you having Aule attack the Gnomes too? I would think the Dwarves could find the Gnomes if they tunneled
into their cities. Also I think the Seven houses could destroy the Gnomes without Aule at their head. By your
description of why the Gnomes didn't attack openly to start with.
EJ Womble (18/09/02)
I always invisioned Gnome as being "all bad" or evil (like orcs). The reason he didn't use them more is because
he didn't have time to breed them in great numbers before the Seven Fathers (supposedly) exterminated all of
them.
That's also the reason no one ever knew about their existence except the Dwarves who kept the knowledge
"hush, hush" - one of those dark family-type secrets.
Mike,
The Gnomes most likely attacked Belegost first, then went after Nogrod which was their folly, by then the
dwarves had reeived reinforcements from the other Seven Fathers and were beginning tofight back.
Aule probably only lead the armies of the Seven Fathers to Rockdome and more than likely never took an active
roll in it's destruction (he only helped the Seven Fathers find it).
>From Rockdome the dwarves discovered clues on how and where to find the Gnomes other secret cities (which
there were very few) and went there destroying them as well.

The few Gnomes which manage to escape then fled south, travelling deep underground where they hoped the
dwarves would never venture, into the Under Deeps.
Jason Taylor (18/09/02)
I always invisioned Gnome as being "all bad" or evil (like orcs). The reason he didn't use them more is
because he didn't have time to breed them in great numbers before the Seven Fathers (supposedly)
exterminated all of them.
[JT]...or, not that he DIDN'T have time to breed them in great numbers, but that they were
INCAPABLE of breeding in great numbers. The Dwarves aren't all that fertile of a race, this could be a
trait in common with the Gnomes that disallowed a prodigous breeding program. Orcs, on the other
hand, bred like rabbits...or rats :).
Gabriele Quaglia (18/09/02)
Hi all,
> I always invisioned Gnome as being "all bad" or evil (like orcs). The reason he didn't use them more is
because he didn't have time to breed them in great numbers before the Seven Fathers (supposedly) exterminated
all of them.
> That's also the reason no one ever knew about their existence except the Dwarves who kept the knowledge
"hush, hush" - one of those dark family-type secrets.
Moreover, if Gnomes may be good or neutral they would be quite a copy of Petty Dwarves. Instead, they are
creatures of Morgoth, like Orcs, Trolls and Dragons.
> What did you think of my idea of why Morgoth didn't use Gnomes more. Good Gnomes (This is why there were
good & bad Gnomes in human folk tales.)
> Also the low birthrate.
I think the basic problem with Dwarves is that they are too stubborn. Their resistance to the rule of Morgoth may
have been one of the causes that made the Black Enemy prefer the Orcs.
EJ Womble (18/09/02)
Gabriele,
Thank you, you put that quite nicely (that's the way I always saw them anyway - on the same level as orcs, trolls
and dragons!).
EJ Womble (18/09/02)
(Gnomes History)
Hi All!
EJ here. Concerning my history on Gnomes, I think there will eventually be THREE different one's written.
History 1 - Accounts of the Seven Fathers:
1) The myths, legends and first hand accounts which the Dwarves know and have come to believe;
History 2 - According to the Gnomes:
2) The myths, stories and lies told to the Gnomes by Morgoth that they have come to believe as being their "true"
history;
and finally
History 3 - The True Story
3) The "true" history of how the Gnomes came into being and their relationship to Morgoth and the Dwarves.

The THREE histories (the first two being based on just stories, myths, lies and legends - the last being the only
"true" history) will incorperate all which I have written thus far, plus the addition of some new materials (like
some stories and tales about the Lost Years between the end of the First Age and the beginning of the Forth Age for those members who would like to use Gnomes during this period in their campaigns).
I am open to any story suggestions you can offer me to fll in the Lost Years of the Gnomes between the end of
1A and the beginning of 4A (as well as any suggestions and/or ideas to polish up the stories I have already
written for the History of the Gnomes so that their history from 3 points of view can overlap, mess and blend
together properly).
Thanks for all your ideas and suggestions thus far! :)

Naugrim
Gabriele Quaglia (05/06/02)
Hi all,
does anyone know the difference between Naugrim (sing. Naugir?) and Noegyd (sing. Nogod)? I think they both
refer to Dwarves, but Naugrim is possibly an offense to them. If anyone can solve my doubts...
Steve Lannigan (05/06/02)
Naugrim means 'stunted people' and was given to them by the Elves (prepominately the Sindar). I haven't heard
of Noegyd.
Chris Jennings (11/06/02)
Since I'm catching up on my emails, and have my dictionary handy...
Both labels are Sindarin, and both mean "stunted folk", but then that is what "dwarf" means in English, so I'm
not sure how insulting they were supposed to be.
"Naugrim" is the common adjective "naug" ("stunted, dwarf") with the 'racial' plural suffix "-rim" ("host")
added. "Naug" can also be used as a singular for "Dwarf" ("one of the Naugrim") but usually only in compounds,
where the -au- often becomes -o-. For example in "Nogrod" (
"Nogoth" is singular noun for "Dwarf" (meaning basically "stunted-one", related to 'naug'), and seems to be the
basic Sindarin word for a Dwarf. This has two plurals: "Noegyth" ("(some) Dwarves", meaning more than one
'Nogoth') and "Nogothrim" ("The Dwarves (as a race)", "the Dwarf-folk"), with the '-rim' suffix again.
There is also the noun "Naweg" (pl. Neweg?), but the use of this is unclear.
I suspect the 'politically correct' term for a Dwarf was Hadhod, which is simply a 'Sindarinisation' of the
Dwarves' own name for themselves "Khazaad". The class plural here again is simply Hadhodrim. After the First
Age though, and the sack of Doriath, I doubt Elves ever bothered to be polite to Dwarves, and the term fall out of
use.
Does that help? Or are you even more confused?!
Gabriele Quaglia (12/06/02)
Wow, Chris, this truly cleared my mind! Now I understand many things about naming.
I agree that Sindar and Noldor didn't bother about the name Naugrim.
My question is: if I greet a Dwarf, calling him 'Naug', will he be offended?
I think that the adversion for Dwarves is widespread among Elves, but quite a common idea about the whole
race. If an Elf meets a Dwarf and he gets impressed by his behaviour (for any reason), he will change his mind
about that Dwarf. This is a sort of chauvinism, so 'Dwarves can be good, if they don't behave too Dwarvishly'.
IMO, talking between themselves, Elves use 'Naugrim' as a habit, knowing the negative meaning of the word
(especially if you consider the tendence to give beautiful names to everything). In presence of Dwarves, if they
want to be polite, they use Hadhod.
If any of you knows something about the relation between northern and southern Italians, I think he may catch
the double naming of things.
Regards
Gabriele

Dwarven names
EJ Womble (09/06/02)
To All:
On several occations I have been told that names like Kordmiere and Dwarkin just don't sound dwarven and
don't seem to follow the "formula" set forth by Tolkien when creating dwarven names.
I agree these names may not be the best names I could have come up with and that I could have tried to find
names to use that sounded more "traditonal".
Here's my question: after exhausting all the possible combinations for creating a "traditional" dwarven name (lets
say 1000 names - and that's being very generous), what do dwarves start calling each other (let's say their
population reaches 1 million at its peak - what do the 999,000 other dwarves call themselves)?
I can't believe that if I paged/called out for a "Thorin" (for example) in an all dwarven tavern (in some dwarven
city - of course) that one third of the room would flag me down saying "I'm Thorin!" I also have a hard time
believing they would all be using "numbers" (like Thorin III or Thorin IV) after their names or even a snazzy last
name like Oakenshield or Gemseeker or the like...
It's seems more lkely to me that at some point other names (seemingly not so traditional) would have to be used,
if not only out of neccessity!
My opinion only.... :)
P.S.
What kind of dwarven names are Gimli, Fili, Kili, Bifur or Bofur anyway (they sound made up to me)?
Steve Lannigan (12/06/02)
I think Dwarves tend to introduce themselves as "" son of "" grandson of "". This tends to distinguish themselves
to us non Dwarves. Also I would say that between themselves they may have different sounding names since
they would almost certainly use their secret language of Khuzdal which may/would have different pronouciation.
Whether this would give them their 'true' names as such I'm not sure. Certainly since they are a secret society
anyway much of what we are discussing is difficult to fathom. Perhaps, the jokes on us Men.
Steve
Cory Rushton (12/06/02)
Hi EJ,
Take a look at the royal families in the English Middle Ages some time ... more Henries, Richards and Edwards
than you can shake a stick at. Reading any history of the Wars of the Roses is tricky when there are three kings
named Henry, three named Edward, two Richards both of whom are Dukes of York.
Previous eras haven't held the principle of "exciting and unique" personal names the way we do.
B F (12/06/02)
E.J.,
>What kind of dwarven names are Gimli, Fili, Kili, Bifur or Bofur anyway(they sound made up to me)?
Most if not all of Tolkien's dwarf names are from the Elder Edda.
EJ Womble (09/06/02)
Cory,

That's all fine and dandy for "royal" branches of dwarven society (and whether or not dwarves have secret names
in Khuzdul - which they most certainly have - is not what I'm getting at) what about the other "majority" of the
dwarven populace?
Are we to assume that whatever "human" (in pronunciation) names they might go by is irrevelant, because you'll
never meet/interact with the "majority" of dwarves (since they are a secret society) and that we should only
concern ourselves with the "minority" of more adventurous/famous dwarves that we have encountered thus far
(and not bother to ask the question - what about other dwarven names)?
This is an easy out/ way to skirt the issue now isn't it? If you can't come up with an "easy" or "plausable" answer
for a question (which might diverge/go against a given Tolkien trend), well then we just simply brush it aside "that's just the way dwarves are named in "human"terms, don't worry/ question it until you've used up/exhaust
the 1000 or so names you can make up right now." Instead of considering what is obvious - "I guess, on occation,
you will run into individual dwarves whose names do not follow any given pattern/formula or trend"... now that's
the truth as I see it (PCs in the game often time diverge from given trends and /or formulas when creating
character names - to be original or unique - I would think the same would hold true in dwarven society, it
certainly true in our society).
My opinion... :)
Cory Rushton (12/06/02)
It might seem like the easy way out, but it's also the historical way out... Name distribution widens at the level
below royalty, but not as much as it stands today. One could argue that giving everyone different names just
because it's easier to keep track of them is also an "easy way out."
Besides, the question of what happens when the average Dwarven population reaches a million is a bit
ambitious for the Dwarves, isn't it? Given Dwarven propagation rates, you'd expect names to fall out of
use faster than they get created.
Actually, though, I think Dwarven names should be non-Edda in origin the farther east and south you go. They
should take on names from the population they interact most frequently with. I saw nothing wrong with
Kordmiere under either situation, nor with Dwarkin (except the similarity of the name to a radical feminist writer
of some fame, prompting me to wonder just what a feminist Dwarf would be like).
Gabriele Quaglia (12/06/02)
Hi EJ,
> Here's my question: after exhausting all the possible combinations for creating a "traditional" dwarven name
(lets say 1000 names - and that's being very generous), what do dwarves start calling each other (let's say their
population reaches 1 million at its peak - what do the 999,000 other dwarves call themselves)?
> I can't believe that if I paged/called out for a "Thorin" (for example) in an all dwarven tavern (in some dwarven
city - of course) that one third of the room would flag me down saying "I'm Thorin!" I also have a hard time
believing they would all be using "numbers" (like Thorin III or Thorin IV) after their names or even a snazzy last
name like Oakenshield or Gemseeker or the like...
Except for Moria and other large cities, I don't believe Dwarves lived in large numbers; and even in those cities,
rarely the population exceeded 60'000. Suppose Dwarves organize themselves in households/clans (quite
believable, I think).
In this case a Dwarf can introduce himself as X, son of Y, of Z house, also called W (nickname). This would
permit to avoid problems with naming. Of course, when the Dwarf talks with non-Dwarves, he may avoid the
household name (say Thorin Oakenshield, instead of Thorin II Oakenshield, son of Thrain II of the Royal House
of Durin's Folk).
I think that some populations did exist with such problems (few names), for example Romans, who used many
names: Praenomen = proper names; no more than 20 (!) did ever exist Nomen = the clan name (only nobles)
Cognomen = the family name Agnomen = a nickname

They still managed to build an empire with such a few names :-) so it was surely a mess, but not so much. Hope
it was clear...
EJ Womble (12/06/02)
Cory,
OK, at least I got some consideration for the idea - thanks. 1 million is a bit ambitious (I admit - even for all
seven houses combined), I was just trying to hammer home a point. :)
Still, I think if a player were to enter into an area of heavy dwarven population (a dwarven city, fortress, mining
camp, etc.) he/she would be confronted with alot of dwarven idiosyncrasies and beliefs which would not hold
true under close scrutiny/inspection and or interaction.
Enough said, thanks for your response and insight. :)
Anders Blixt (12/06/02)
In regard to the discussion about Dwarven names:
In earlier days it seems that the selection of names in European cultures was limited. In classical Rome all
women of the same family had the same name. E.g. the women of the Julius family were all named Julia. That's
why people invented nicknames. In medieval Sweden lots of kings were named Erik. One of them got the
nickname "king Erik the Lisping and Limping" -- no kidding.
It could certainly be that Dwarves used nicknames to distinguish between the five chaps named Fili working the
same shift in the pit. We have already nicknames in Tolkien's text, like Stonehelm, Oakenshield and Deathless.
Oliver Schick (20/06/02)
Hi EJ,
the reason why I object to names such as 'Kordmiere', 'Hendale', or 'Wendale' is because they are not explained.
This means both that no background for them is given (i.e., in which language they're supposed to be), but also
because they are not phonetically sound for any of the languages we know of in M-e. Tolkien's dwarven names
are taken from the Elder Edda, but this was only because he did this in the 'Hobbit' and didn't feel later that he
could take the names back, much as he changed some other things in the 'Hobbit'. So he interpreted them as
English equivalents/representations of the Westron translations/versions of dwarven names. In order for this to
have some verisimilitude, the names had to sound ancient and strange in English, so that he as translator came up
with using Old Icelandic. Consequently, all English versions of Westron versions of Khuzdul names should have
the same sound to them. By no stretch of the imagination, however, do the above names sound right. This is why
I object to their _unexplained_ use.
In order to retain them, you need to add something like, for example, explaining that 'Kordmiere' is a name given
to the dwarf by the men living around Belegost, i.e., that it is in _their_ language. You might also explain why
the normal convention for representing dwarven names is not followed here. You might (correctly) point to the
fact that Westron hadn't emerged by the time Kordmiere died, and as he wasn't illustrious enough to be known to
the elves, he was never recorded in Elvish history of the 1A. This meant that in later Mannish translations of
these histories he did not receive a Westron name, and this in turn meant that it was never represented in English
the conventional way. Likewise, you have to explain how the English names 'Hendale' and 'Wendale' could have
come to be used.
These contortions are necessary to make such names believable, I'm afraid. You said yourself that you invented
these names a while ago--I would suggest they're due for review. Names are a very important part of making a
story atmospheric, and if you get them wrong, you can wreck a whole story. For me these names detract very
much from the adventure, which otherwise I think is good stuff and worth developing.
On the question of distribution of dwarven names, you have to consider that with the exception of Azaghal, we
don't know a single dwarven name--we don't even know Durin's. There is no guarantee that the Westron names
adopted by dwarves accurately reflect their Khuzdul names. (Cp. the present-day Asians who adopt Western
'epithets' in order to facilitate their stay in the West. These often differ greatly, even though people might have
the same Chinese name.) Also, as has been remarked, the range of different first names available to any society
isn't that great. Just think of how many people are called the same Christian names like Peter, David, Michael,

Simon, Tom, etc. By all accounts, dwarves are even less imaginative than humans when it comes to language and
naming, and it may be assumed that their range was even smaller. Among Elves, name duplications apparently
occurred very rarely, and neither did they occur among the Numenorean kings. However, among the Kings of
Gondor, Chieftains of the Rangers, and Stewards of Gondor (also the lords of Dol Amroth, I believe), you find
name repetitions. The closer a people was to the elves and Undying Lands, the less repetitions seem to have
occurred. An exception are the hobbit genealogical tables, where Tolkien's imagination ran riot and didn't
produce any repetitions except for the deliberate ones of Sam's children.
Still, you can make many different dwarven names based on the existing templates!
EJ Womble (20/06/02)
Oliver,
As usual you have a way of making things more complicated than they have to be...
In Appendix F of Return of the King there is a "brief" section devoted to the topic of Dwarves - society, names
and language.
In it they explain, and I quote: "But in the Third Age close friendship still was found in many places between
Men and Dwarves; and it was according to the nature of the Dwarves that, travellng and labouring and trading
about the lands, as they did after the destruction of their ancient mansions, they should use the languages of men
among whom they dwelt."
Furthermore: "Gimili's own name, however, and the names of all his kin, are of Northern (Manish) origin. Their
own secret and 'inner' names, the Dwarves have never revealed to any one of alien race. Not even on their tombs
do they inscribe them."
That being said, I defend the use of the names of Dwarkin, Hendale and Wendale for my Dwarves in the
adventure on the basis that they are among several Manish names which were prominantly used by Dwarves in
and around the region of the Ered Luin and Vales below Belegost as influenced by the languages being spoken
by men in this region at the close of the 3A and during the beginning of the 4A.
As for your arguement on the name "Kordmiere", well I'm still looking into that (but as he is known as
Kordmiere Stonecutter - an obvious Manish adaptation - perhaps with the passing of time, this name was
adopted by the Dwarves of this region inorder to "tell the tale" to other races without revealing Kordmiere's true
"secret" name that sounds like a safe arguement).
You need to stop being so "anal" about these things (no offense). I'm sure there is a logical explanation for why
things are as they are(especially when presented by a fellow GM - as far as adventure info. goes). If I read, in a
module for instance, that there is a Dwarf named Kordmiere who existed during the 1A, I accept it as being fact.
I might think it odd and may not be exactly sure how this came to be, but none the less, I accept it (even if no
detailed explanation is given) and move on. In most cases when you purchase a published adventure module,
there is no one whom you can contact to explain or give greater detail to subject matter contained in the said
module - you just accept the facts presented at "face value" for what they are and move on (if later there is a
correction or alteration to the facts, you simply take mental note of it and include the changes in future use of
that module).
Questioning every little "quirk" in some one's work is not a very productive use of your time (as a GM or Player
in the "real" world of "store bought" modules we are not given this luxury - the info. contained in the module is
what it is, like it or not (there's no one you can complain about it to)... and if you don't like it, change it - that's
what alot of GMs do).
In an "official" capacity you might consider yourself to be a "supervisor" of work submitted by members - this
would be fine if this were a "real" job and my livelyhood in this "business" were at stake, but this is just a fanmodule group open for the introduction of new works and ideas for ME and not a job. You need to "chill-out"
and be more accepting of "new" materials/ideas and ways of thinking/seeing things that are submitted here... and
if you don't like something (I personally submitted), just change it (you have my permission - not that you ever
needed it), since your "vision" and finale "say-so" seem to be the only opinion you think matters anyone anyway
(boss).

Your way may not always be the "best" way and you may not always have all the answers (no matter how hard
you try to cover all your bases)... something to consider.
Gabriele Quaglia (21/06/02)
Hi EJ,
> That being said, I defend the use of the names of Dwarkin, Hendale and > Wendale for my Dwarves in the
adventure on the basis that they are among > several Manish names which were prominantly used by Dwarves
in and around the region of the Ered Luin and Vales below Belegost as > influenced by the languages being
spoken by men in this region at the > close of the 3A and during the beginning of the 4A.
Well, this alternative explanation works, but I prefer the other... few and unimaginative, traditional names for
Dwarves. As nearly all Dwraves in Tolkien's works have similar names, you can suppose they are all the same,
and that it is not by chance that Thorin's company had such ridiculous names. They would sound less stupid if
you think that they were traditional and there wasn't much choice in naming Dwarves. This sounds more
Tolkienish, but it's just MHO.
> You need to stop being so "anal" about these things (no offense). I'm > sure there is a logical explanation for
why things are as they are (especially when presented by a fellow GM - as far as adventure info. goes). If I read,
in a module for instance, that there is a Dwarf named Kordmiere who existed during the 1A, I accept it as being
fact. I might think it odd and may not be exactly sure how this came to be, but none the less, I accept it (even if
no detailed explanation is given) and move on. In most cases when you purchase a published adventure module,
there is no one whom you can contact to explain or give greater detail to subject matter contained in the said
module - you just accept the facts presented at "face value" for what they are and move on (if later there is a
correction or alteration to the facts, you simply take mental note of it and include the changes in future use of
that module).
If you accept what people writes in modules, there is no more room for discussion. Moreover, it was you who
invited comments. I think Oliver was polite in spending time to read your adventure. Then, if you don't agree
with him, just say it and do what you want (after all, the adventure was written by you), but it's not correct to ask
his opinion and then ask him to shut up.
Personally, I liked the discussion about Dwarven names.
Jason Taylor (22/06/02)
At least to the extent of TH and LotR, all of the Dwarves were from Durin's Tribe (if I remember correctly)...so it
would make some sense that all their names had a similiar source since they shared both family and geography.
The only other Dwarf names I can remember are Mim and Khim...I don't know if they are Elda Edda type names
as well...but they sound more exotic :).
EJ Womble (22/06/02)
Gabriele,
I wasn't exactly asking/telling Oliver to "shut up" as you so politely phrased it, I simply don't agree, as you stated
in your response, with his point of view on dwarven names. The fact that Oliver keeps bringing up the name
issue in nearly every correspondence to my adventure addressed to me, asking/telling me I need to
explain/defend my introduction/use of what he deems "non traditional dwarven names" is just not right... to
inquire as to why, might be more polite... and to then accept whatever name(s) I, the writer, choose/decide to use.
I would never tell another writer that his choice of names "will ruin your story" (not an exact quote, but close
enough). If I had totally left out the names of characters in my adventure and instead left it up to individual GMs
to choose/decide what names they would like to use, would not change the story/adventure - a good
story/adventure/plot is still good reguardless of trivialities - like names.

I have told Oliver (and all) that they are welcome to take or change any portion of my adventure to suit their own
needs/use - it just seems important to Oliver that he change my mind about the use of names in ME (a pet peeve
of his, I suppose), but this is not going to happen... he has, however, my permission to change anything he does
not particularly like about my adventure to better fit into his "stereotypical" idea of ME (perpetuating this
stereotype might be fine for advetures based in the 2A and 3A where it is important not to alter the ideas/works
of Tolkien, but I play during the 4A, a time of dynamic change in ME and if part of that change is that dwarves
during this time have decided to expand their name base to include a whole new venue of dwarven names, so be
it - this has happened in many other cultures, that is why names are so varied in so many places within different
cultures, so why not for the dwarves?).
All along I have informed/told everyone why it is that I choose only to set my aventures and play during the 4A as not to tamper with the ideas/works of Tolkien which are "fact" (not presumptions or assumptions - as is the
case for any ideas/works which are developed in the 4A). I am open to critism from all and welcome any debate
which generates new ideas and ways of preceiving/thinking about ME from a "game point of view" - my ideas
are based on use for MERP, not implied as expanded history on Tolkiens work... many do not see a difference
between the written work and the game, however I do. There are creatures, magic, ideas, etc. that Ican see
working quite well in a MERP campaign, but would be very questionable as suggested writing material to be
included in the works of Tolkien.
Again, I am a GM, first and foremost, the works I submit are done solely to give other GMs fresh ideas and new
ways of looking/thinking about campaigns and campaigning in ME - take it or leave it, the choice is up to each
of you... my only hope is that in some meager way I might contribute to both GMs and players enjoying/having
more fun running and playing MERP.
Dieter Aufmwasser (22/06/02)
Hello all,
I've spend last night trying to get up to date, the Dwarven Names Discussion was very interesting. First of all,
Mim and Khim are Petty Dwarven (Noegyth Nibin) names, probably not the best choice to bring in.
But I think the discussion is quite fruitless, because in the end it is a matter of gaming style. In this question there
can't be a worse or better, it's just one way or the other. One prefers detail and depth (in names, descriptions,
being as "Tolkienish" as possible, etc.) others are very campaign oriented (complex story, rich background,
political involvement of the players) and there are others who are just in for smashing some orc-skulls :-)
Most will fall somewhere in-between...
Everyone develops his/her own style with time, it's a matter of gaming experience, personel preferences and
many more. It is very difficult to change, and what for? And although there are some points which seem strange
to me in EJ's adventure it has inspired my imagination, thank you for that and go on
Oliver Schick (22/06/02)
[Warning: This is extremely long, so please only read if you're really interested in the subject of names and in the
general issue of whether we should comment on each other's work here.]
EJ,
> As usual you have a way of making things more complicated than they have to be...
I'm afraid not. You make them simpler than they are (but see below) by ignoring the other sources. Letter 15 (31
August 1937), Letters p. 21, about the 'Hobbit':
'In any case--except for the runes (Anglo-Saxon) and the dwarf-names (Icelandic), neither used with antiquarian
accuracy, and both regretfully substituted to avoid abstruseness for the genuine alphabets and names of the
mythology into which Mr Baggins intrudes--I'm afraid my professional knowledge is not directly used.'

Had Tolkien used the dwarf-names as used by them among the Northmen, there would have been no need for a
substitution. The dwarf-names as used in the H are therefore not names used in Middle-earth, either as 'open'
names or as 'secret' names. They are editorial substitutions to make the reading easier for the English edition.
Further, Letter 25 (published in the Observer 20 February 1938), Letters p. 31:
'The dwarves are not quite the dwarfs of better known lore. They have been given Scandinavian names, it is true;
but that is an editorial concession. Too many names in the tongues proper to the period might have been
alarming.'
Therefore, the Old Icelandic from which the dwarf-names are drawn is not a tongue proper to the period.
Thirdly, Letter 144 (25 April 1954), Letters p. 175:
'The language of Dale and the Long Lake would, if it appeared, be represented as more or less Scandinavian in
character; but it is only represented by a few names, especially those of the Dwarves that came from that region.
These are all Old Norse Dwarf-names.'
Again, the dwarf-names that appear in the 'Hobbit' are 'Old Norse Dwarf-names'. As Old Norse was not a tongue
proper to the period, the 'real' tongues of the period would have been 'more or less Scandinavian'. In the event, in
order to simplify, as he did not use the languages proper, only names, Tolkien did not invent names 'properly' in
those tongues, though he might have done had he invented the tongue, as well. Names for Tolkien are always
meaningful, and in order to ensure their belonging to a certain language, their meaning has to be anchored in that
language. As the languages in question had not been invented (I don't know whether there is anything in the
philological writings currently being published in Vinyar Tengwar, though), no names could be formed in them.
Nor had the opposite process, by which, for example, the elvish languages sprang from the name 'Earendel',
taken place. If Tolkien had invented any names in new languages, he would inevitably have sought to explain
them and thereby would have invented bits of these languages.
Finally, Letter 297 (draft, not sent, August 1967), Letters p. 382:
'As stated in the Appendices the 'outer' public names of the northern Dwarves were derived from the language of
men in the far north _not_ from that variety represented by A.S. [Anglo-Saxon], and in consequence are given
Scandinavian shape, as rough equivalents of the kinship _and_ divergence of the contemporary dialects.'
Again, the 'Scandinavian shape' is only a rough equivalence to the names as they were in 'the contemporary
dialects'. This is just to show that I don't complicate things. The process of 'external' vs. 'internal' invention in
Tolkien's work holds a very great fascination for me, and especially so with names. In order to get them right,
i.e., consistent and believable, one had better observe what he has to say on the subject.
I'm assuming that you're quoting the following passage (though you don't say so) because in my previous mail I
talked throughout of dwarves having Westron names. That's a clear mistake on my part. Naturally, some dwarves
would have had Westron names they went by, but others would have northern names. So in fact, I didn't make
things complicated, but on the contrary simplified too much. Nonetheless, the following passage likewise, and in
a different way, states only a part of the complete case:
> In it they explain, and I quote: "But in the Third Age close friendship still was found in many places between
Men and Dwarves; and it was according to the nature of the Dwarves that, travellng and labouring and trading
about the lands, as they did after the destruction of their ancient mansions, they should use the languages of men
among whom they dwelt."
On Gimli's name:
> Furthermore: "Gimili's own name, however, and the names of all his kin, are of Northern (Manish) origin.
Their own secret and 'inner' names, the Dwarves have never revealed to any one of alien race. Not even on their
tombs do they inscribe them."
In the light of the above, this (not very clear) passage omits the crucial distinction (still present in Tolkien's mind
in 1967, as we have seen, and so post-Appendices) that at least the names of Gimli's kin, as contained in H and
LotR, are not authentic names out of M-e, but substitutions. 'Gimli', for all I know, may well be an exception; I
haven't checked the Vlusp passage for whether it occurs in it. By the time of the LotR and the dwarvish

genealogical table, Tolkien may well have taken to inventing variations on the Vlusp names to increase the
size of the pool of names. So 'Gimli' may be a later invention that may even be a genuine M-e form. Letters 381
again: 'A-S will have nothing to say about _Gimli_.' Four more dwarf-names from the Vlusp are Lofar, Nar,
Anar, and Hannar (Return of the Shadow, p. 238 and n. 14 (p. 246)). There may be a reference to Gimli's name
somewhere else in HoM-e, but I can't find it now.
> That being said, I defend the use of the names of Dwarkin, Hendale and Wendale for my Dwarves in the
adventure on the basis that they are among several Manish names which were prominantly used by Dwarves in
and around the region of the Ered Luin and Vales below Belegost as influenced by the languages being spoken
by men in this region at the close of the 3A and during the beginning of the 4A.
I did suggest that they can be retained as long as they're _explained_. I'd only ask you to consider that all three
names sound a lot like English names.
> As for your arguement on the name "Kordmiere", well I'm still looking into that (but as he is known as
Kordmiere Stonecutter - an obvious Manish adaptation - perhaps with the passing of time, this name was
adopted by the Dwarves of this region inorder to "tell the tale" to other races without revealing Kordmiere's true
"secret" name - that sounds like a safe arguement).
Yes, it's what I was suggesting--as long as the origin of the name was explained, there could only be an aesthetic
argument against it, and that's clearly beyond the scope of this list.
> You need to stop being so "anal" about these things (no offense).
How can you expect anyone not to take offence at that?
> I'm sure there is a logical explanation for why things are as they are
I agree, of course, but in that case, you need to _provide_ it. Fantasy role-playing needs to occur in worlds in
which things are made believable and consistent. That doesn't mean that you have to give every single bit of
explanation to your players all the time (of course not), but that even without explanation, the information the
players get speaks for itself through its implicit consistency.
> (especially when presented by a fellow GM - as far as adventure info. goes). If I read, in a module for
instance, that there is a Dwarf named Kordmiere who existed during the 1A, I accept it as being fact.
(Adventure) modules are for GMs, who are often asked questions by their players. Sometimes, circumstances
arise in which they have to answer them. Of course, many questions players ask ask for information which can't
be given at that moment; but when it can, the GM must be prepared. By not providing all the necessary
information, you are letting the GM down. Some things, like the name Kordmiere, are _not_ self-explanatory.
> Questioning every little "quirk" in some one's work is not a very productive use of your time (as a GM or
Player in the "real" world of "store bought" modules we are not given this luxury - the info. contained in the
module is what it is, like it or not (there's no one you can complain about it to)... and if you don't like it, change
it - that's what alot of GMs do).
Nonetheless, it must be useful in the first place. I don't have any objections to GMs changing things for their own
games, or possibly even making them inconsistent--that's up to them. But a published module _must_ adhere to
higher standards.
How can you say that I question 'every little "quirk"' in your work? Haven't I said very clearly and repeatedly
that I consider the Belegost adventure good and productive, and that I feel I only need to comment on the things
that in my opinion need to be improved? Am I really making points that question every little quirk, EJ? I don't
think so. Most of it I have left completely untouched. And when you've responded to my questions and
suggestions, you will find, looking back, that I've mostly said something along the lines of 'Great--put that in, as
it was missing before.' I see this as collaborative improvement of such texts. Believe me, if I ever get round to
making available to you my own texts, they won't be free of mistakes, and I will very highly appreciate
constructive comments and suggestions made about and for them.
I have to ask whether you even want to receive my comments. If not, I'll shut up immediately. But I think it
would be a shame.You still seem very insecure about the standard you want to apply to your own writing--you
still don't seem to consider it potentially published, i.e., publishable material. However, presenting work to a

wider public means that one accept the judgement of others to some extent. You still seem to take offence that I
provide mine. Is it because you're the only one to whom I'm currently responding in such detail? That's not
because I'm singling you out, but because you're the only one currently posting (bar general discussion) on the
area of M-e to which I limit my interest, namely, the lands described by Tolkien. Elsewhere, it's not quite
'anything goes', but a lot closer to that. I would only _encourage_ you to think more about some sort of
publication, even if it remains within this list. Right now, you still add all sorts of insecure caveats (your basic
attitude seems to be 'like it or lump it or change it in private') to what you post that betray your uncertainty about
publicity of your writing. Believe me, with good layouts that Belegost thing can be a cracking adventure!
As for the subject of names, you may be aware that for Tolkien names were by far one of the most important
aspects of his writing. He _agonised_ over them. We must aspire to good standards on this extremely important
point if we're working on M-e. _I_ would argue that this should also be the case with other worlds, but they don't
tend to have the resource of a philological genius like Tolkien, and tend to be extremely sloppy about names.
Compare Letters p. 375, where Tolkien criticises and repudiates the notion falsely attributed to him that: 'When
you invent a language, you more or less catch it out of the air. You say boo-hoo and it means something.' Names
are not a little quirk when you're writing about M-e.
> In an "official" capacity you might consider yourself to be a "supervisor" of work submitted by members - this
would be fine if this were a "real" job and my livelyhood in this "business" were at stake, but this is just a fanmodule group open for the introduction of new works and ideas for ME and not a job. You need to "chill-out"
and be more accepting of "new" materials/ideas and ways of thinking/seeing things that are submitted here...
and if you don't like something (I personally submitted), just change it (you have my permission - not that you
ever needed it), since your "vision" and finale "say-so" seem to be the only opinion you think matters anyone
anyway (boss).
I don't understand where you're coming from here at all. Don't I give arguments every time I give my opinion?
Do you think that any arguments are generally unpersuasive? You again distort my meaning completely when
you say that I don't value the opinions of others, and that is what I consider very offensive here. With the
exception of the points I raised, I have commended the entire rest of your work on Belegost. This suffices as a
counter-example,
although
I
could
mention
others.
Please understand that I consider this list to fulfil a useful function in that we can _all_ be each others' editors.
I'm not doing anything that I think can't be done by everyone else here. I'm not 'supervising' anyone. The public
world does not stop at _jobs_--we are still doing work here. That it happens to be unpaid is entirely coincidental.
It _is_ possible to learn from others, you know--just now I made the mistake of leaving aside the fact that
dwarves in the H were mainly around northern languages, etc., which you pointed out to me. Believe it or not,
this reminded me of something I'd simply forgotten. So it works both ways. OK? Please stop flaming me.
> Your way may not always be the "best" way and you may not always have all the answers (no matter how hard
you try to cover all your bases)... something to consider.
It is better to have a better answer than a worse one. A better answer is distinguished from a worse one by being
supported by better arguments. So what if it is subjective? That doesn't mean it's only _relative_ to the one
giving it. You can still often tell which is better-founded. Subjective answers can be communicated, agreed or
disagreed on, and expanded or reduced further. Please, EJ: The kind of debate I'm interested in is not one in
which my opinion prevails. Together, we can find the best answer. How often do I have to stress the value of
collaboration before you cease misunderstanding and misrepresenting me? (I am only referring to your general
remarks here, not to the entirely correct point about Westron etc. that I perceive you to be making.)
EJ Womble (22/06/02)
Oliver,
Sorry for the misunderstandings and for offending you thus, I appreciate the time you take to comment
constructively about my e-mails (though I don't always agree with your point of view or see eye-to-eye on many
issues of discussion, there is alot of new information revealed to me for consideration).
Don't "shut-up" as you so politely put it (I don't recall ever saying these words... perhaps "chill-out" or take it
easy... something along these lines) :) I have always been opened to suggestions, critisms, open discussions and
debates - you, and others, make me think alot (mostly on defending my work and comments with
reasonable/rational responses) and that's a good thing (believe it or not). I don't mean to be offensive, but like
others I do take pride in my work and sometimes get more emotional in arguements than one should - please
forgive and try to over look such outbursts... there has never been a time I intentionally tried to attack/offend/hurt

another individual on comments directed toward me (I'm more sarcastic than anything else - a bad habbit and
often times offensive (sorry) - it's just venting frustration at others expense (again sorry)).
Now on to other matters of debate:
Since ME is not "our" Earth, how can the languages of Old Norse or Scandinavian even exist? What I am
suggesting is that these languages may have been used as templates for languages in ME, but since no two
languages will ever be exactly the same, there is room for add-ons, alterations and new added words and
interpetations to the ME "equivilant" to these languages or is Tolkien just simply suggesting that Westron is
Scandinavian (which is not very original).
By the way, I always thought the spoken language of Westron (the "common tongue" of ME) to be the
"equivilant" of English in our world (from a game/gamers point of view - not a literary point of view) and not
Scandinavian (as was suggesed or did I misinterpret something)? This would account for my choice of dwarven
names seeming so "English" the Westron in MERP was interpretted by me to be English (or the "equivilant").
You say dwarven name were chosen to be meaningful, give some examples - explain this to me - what
"meaning" (if any) can you give me for several dwarf names - pick any of your choosing to explain better this
point to me.
If Tolkien wants to explain away his choices for dwarven names used in the Hobbit as "easy for English
translation" this is a good enough explanation for you... OK and acceptable, but I have to go to great lengths and
detail to explain and defend my use of names? This is not right.
Also, it is OK for Tolkien to increase the dwarven name pool, but not others (yes, I am aware it is "his world",
but this arguement holds fast to the exanded works the group and many others have done to "his world" - why is
it OK for some to expand on Tolkien's ideas and not others? OK to expand certain areas of knowledge and taboo
to expand others? Who make these choices?) I don't think expanding the dwarven name pool in the 4A with more
"English" sounding names (for use in MERP only) would be "pushing the envelope" too far.
Remember, all my works are based in the 4A... I would think this would grant me a little more creative leniency
since most events in the 4A are speculatory and are not "fact" based as in earler ages.
As far as being published... I don't much care (at the moment). I do some fantasy writing on the side and perhaps
one day (in my retirement) I might actually find the time to finish writing my trilogy I started perhaps as far back
as 6 years ago about a half-troll named Romac who is trying to save his people (the Trolls) from becoming
second class citizens in their own lands under the domination of the cunning Goblins (who started out as slaves
in Troll society), who now have a seat on the Council of Elders and influence over the Emperor and have set into
motion events which will lead to war against the humans, elves and dwarves of the Freelands to the west (after
800 years of peace). I feel its a god story, worthy of publication, but being a perfectionist it's hard for me to
accept my own work as being ready to publish (I always seem to find room for changes, never beng quite happy
with the work I've done thus far). But this is off the topic/subject of our ME discussion.
Thanks for your e-mail (I think I need to get copies of those published letters your so fond of quoting if I expect
to make better arguements to plead/support my cases). :)
Gabriele Quaglia (22/06/02)
Hello EJ,
I respect your point of view, totally legitimate. Only, for what concerns pure opinion, I agree with liver about the
importance of names. I like your stories (I haven't read the whole Belegost adventure and Fourth Age, but only
some excerpts here and there), but I think that I would have liked them more if the names were more 'Tolkienish'.
Having said this, please go on writing, as I see many people enjoy your good work. Only, if I share Oliver's
opinion about the importance of good names and the feeling they add to the fame, maybe we are not the only
ones, and what one considers a minor detail, for others it might be an interesting way to create feeling in the
players. Just the opinion of a part of the audience :-)
Oliver Schick (30/06/02)

Hi EJ,
I'm glad you want to change the names. I suppose the phonetic problem with 'Dwarkin' is that it appears to be a
rule in Dwarven names not to have more than two separate double consonants in a name. Here are some sample
names I made up on the spot; perhaps you like some of them--Boi, Nari, Thalin, Groi, Lari, Bilur, Thili, Fari,
Loi, etc. Make your own! You'll easily get a feel for the names if you study the basic patterns. As we don't know
(anyone with better knowledge of Old Icelandic out there than me?) whether the Elder Edda names are
meaningful, this method of making up names seems possible. I think it's a good idea to make up similar names
with different initial sounds for the father-son combination of Hendale and Wendale.

Creative Genius (and Gnomes in particular)


Steve Lannigan (30/05/02)
To All
One thing that has annoyed me intensely about these discussion board is the constant repetoire by some who
seem to have nothing better to do than arragontly assume that they have for some reason the exclusive rights
from Christopher Tolkien to correct any statement made by others regardless of whether they are right or wrong.
I firstly refer to our friends EJ wonderful tale of the Gnomes. A story that had a nice tale which with a minor
tinker or two could be wonderfully intorduced. Next we seem to have sparked an argument among the so called
(and self proclaimed may I add) experts who seem to think that we have the whole thing wrong and in fact EJ's
tale of Gnomes is in fact a tale of the Petty Dwarves! How ARROGANT can some people really assume to be?
Since it's EJ's tale and has no reference to ANY of the Petty Dwarven tales (of which there are few and their
origins have NOTHING to do with Sauron teaching Dwarves how to use Celebur and twisting them) then who
has the right to tell HIM that his Gnomes aren't in fact Gnomes but are Petty Dwarves? Shall we tell him how to
write his campaign as well?
Not content with this but then some people start to insult him with saying that there was 7 Dwarvin Fathers and
not 8. Well assuming that EJ hasn't been living on the moon for the past 25 years or so I'm sure that he's perfectly
aware of this fact. I took it to be a wonderful tale in Dwarvin folklore which COULD have had it's origins as a
small Dwarven tribe exposed to the long term effects of Celebur (or some other radio active substance) - but it
didn't really matter as that's the wonderful thing about legends - the truth doesn't have to be known for sure.
We should all take a step back and get off of our high horses and respect things that other GM's do. I am frankly
appauled at the way some people have ripped into others on these discussion boards. They should be to discuss
topics not to try and outdo each other with our views or knowledge on how Middle Earth should be.
Are we not trying to create something wonderful here? Then lets encourage a bit of creative thinking and give
plaudits where it's deserved!
Steve
Cory Rushton (31/05/02)
(Creative Genius (and Gnomes in particular))
Perhaps we all need to step bakc for a moment. I didn't think anyone was particularly harsh with EJ on the issue
of the Gnomes. I happen to think it was an intriguing way to add some Dwarvish folklore to the mix, but as far as
I recall there was no nastiness on either side. Some people simply thought to equate the Gnomes with the Petty
Dwarves, in part (I assume) because the two "peoples" seem very similar.
Steve, it's always far more difficult to give plaudits where they're due as a group... because we all see plaudits
differently and in different places. If someone doesn't like an idea for whatever reason, they should be under no
compulsion to praise it regardless.
I, for example, wasn't offended when someone (Oliver, maybe?) critiqued by Arthur-4th Age campaign. You
can't have a discussion without disagreements, unless we're all just going to praise one another all the time.
When I have criticized the work of some in the group (Gabriele being one), they have accepted the criticisms
graciously and have often modified their work (not always in the direction I envisioned, but nonetheless).
Everyone who submits work to a public forum has to learn to do that.
Cory
Just tryin' to keep the peace
Steve Lannigan (30/05/02)
(Creative Genius (and Gnomes in particular))
Cory,
Creative critism I'm all for. As you know, I've added my own bit of creative critism myself on numerous threads
but drawn the line on what I feel is arrogance - and it's important to recognise when it's displayed in front of you.
Gabriele Quaglia (31/05/02)

Hi, Steve,
please excuse me for the tone I used with you last e-mail. It was a joke, and I didn't thought that you might be
offended (even after my genuine appreciation about your idea about Celebur). So, I don't mean to offend any of
you, I respect all who contribute to our work. Only, I don't think that cold formality has to be used every time.
Next time I will pay more attention on how I write things (anyway I see you didn't lose your quoting habits)
Since EJ came out with an adventure with Petty Dwarves, taking elements here and there from several ICE
modules, I assumed (wrongly, indeed), that he was talking about Petty Dwarves, simply calling them Gnomes (in
fact, i don't think they call themselves petty; and I can't see differences between the two races).
I already wrote that I like this story very much, and I complimented with him, so I can't see why you think that I
am insulting him.
I think that it is not so clear that the Dwarf Fathers are 7, as we have already seen Sauron survive the Third Age.
I was just pointing out something that someone may have forgotten.
Again, you seem to have not noticed that I praised myths and folklore. Yes, EJ's tale can be a wonderful legend,
and it is not necessary to know all the detailed truth about Petty Dwarves/Gnomes. Most Free People seem to
know almost nothing about them. I only suggested some spicy idea on their origin.
Is this arrogance?
EJ Womble (01/06/02)
Gabriele,
I never thought any of your comments about Gnomes and Petty Dwarves was derogatory in any way - on the
contrary, since I never fully explored the "true" history behind the appearence of the Gnome race in ME, any
suggestions and/or ideas about their origin is welcomed.
In my adventure The Flooded Mines of Belegost, there are no Gnomes, just Petty-Dwarves. I'm sorry if I gave
anyone the impression that there were Gnomes in this adventure... I just wanted to know what other members
thought about the idea of Gnomes in ME (I do, however, have several other adventures/encounters where I use
Gnomes, just that the Flooded Mines is not one of them - sorry).
The topic of Gnomes in ME was not meant to be contriversal, I just wanted to know what others in our group
thought about the idea (I have a whole lot of ideas I have explored for MERP, some - like my 4A Time-Line - are
quite contriversal and so I have been tentative in their introduction to the group for discussion). From time to
time I will drop an idea in for group discussion - these are only ideas.
I always hope something good can come out of discussing them in an open forum - more so for game use in
MERP as opposed to expanding or adding to the history of ME as written by Tolkien (alot of my ideas sound
cool for game use, but not so cool for expanding the written history of Tolkien's ME).
As always, thanks for entertaining my thoughts and ideas with an open mind. :)
Gabriele Quaglia (02/06/02)
Hello EJ,
> I never thought any of your comments about Gnomes and Petty Dwarves was derogatory in any way - on the
contrary, since I never fully explored the "true" history behind the appearence of the Gnome race in ME, any
suggestions and/or ideas about their origin is welcomed.
I'm glad there were no misunderstanding.
Sometimes one may think that "it doesn't fit well in Middle Earth" means "it sucks".
It is never the case, at least when it is I who say it. Your ideas are interesting, so go on :-)
> In my adventure The Flooded Mines of Belegost, there are no Gnomes, just Petty-Dwarves. I'm sorry if I gave
anyone the impression that there were Gnomes in this adventure... I just wanted to know what other members
thought about the idea of Gnomes in ME (I do, however, have several other adventures/encounters where I use
Gnomes, just that the Flooded Mines is not one of them - sorry).
> The topic of Gnomes in ME was not meant to be contriversal, I just wanted to know what others in our group
thought about the idea (I have a whole lot of ideas I have explored for MERP, some - like my 4A Time-Line - are

quite contriversal and so I have been tentative in their introduction to the group for discussion). From time to
time I will drop an idea in for group discussion - these are only ideas.
Tolkien wrote few lines about Petty Dwarves (at least in the Silmarillion), so there's not much to quote (take a
look). We can speculate a lot, especially on the past of this race.
I had always imagined Petty Dwarves very similar to what you call Gnomes, but definitely this is an opinion.
This is why I thought you meant the same thing with different names. 'Petty' is the best description for both their
lookings and their behaviour. They hate Elves and in general all the other races, including Orcs and Trolls. They
are wicked and treacherous, coward, and greedy (their greed may be stronger than family ties).
I must confess to be quite uneasy with the creation of a new race in Middle Earth. At the same time, I see
Gnomes 'work', and are believable. I think we (all) should go on discussing it, and in the end you (EJ) decide if
you arelike to upload something about them.
Gabriele Quaglia (02/06/02)
Hello EJ,
> I don't want others to "feel uneasy" about the introduction of any of my ideas (if you don't like or care for
them, don't use them). Most of my ideas are aimed solely as game suppliments for MERP (I know that's not the
main aim of the fan-module group, but perhaps one or two of my ideas will be good enough to make it into one
of your world expansion modules).
That's what I said. Only, let's think twice before introducing new races into ME. I like Gnomes and I think they
can fit in the Illuin Bay (or wherever you want them to be), but need some more detail than a simple legend,
something maybe the players will not know, but the Master should be aware of, if he plans to use them in a
different way than cannon fodder for dungeons. So, simply let's keep the mail list running :-) (only my opinion)
William Wilson (03/06/02)
--- In fan-modules@y..., Steve Lannigan <Steve.Lannigan@s...> wrote:
> Creative critism I'm all for. As you know, I've added my own bit of creative critism myself on numerous
threads but drawn the line on what I feel is arrogance - and it's important to recognise when it's displayed in front
of you.
Arrogance like beauty may be in the eye of the beholder. What you may find as arrogant, antoher may not. Its
subjective. However, what may need to be addrfessed (I haven't noticed it) is how true to Tolkien's works the
gathering here wants to be? Are people here to work out only what was in the books? Primary or with the
addition of all the writings? Are they here to "value add" to the books? Add in plausible material like my Greater
Harad or Nazgul's citadel? Or are they here to add in anything that sounds fun whether it might conflict with the
primary books or any of JRR's or Christopher's writings?
I am all for extrapolating but don't care for things that just don't fit. And yes, that can be subjective for me. I have
to make the call. Everyone who looks at other's works have to make the call and I would rather them be honest
about it.
--- In fan-modules@y..., Steve Lannigan <Steve.Lannigan@s...> wrote:
<much snippage>
> We should all take a step back and get off of our high horses and respect things that other GM's do. I am
frankly appauled at the way some people have ripped into others on these discussion boards. They should be to
discuss topics not to try and outdo each other with our views or knowledge on how Middle Earth should be.
<<smile>> By the way, It's Middle-earth if talking about Tolkien's world. And after the amoke stops coming out
of your ears, you and the rest peobably need to go by your advice. However, there are known factors in Tolkien's
works and I for one have no problem with someone telling me that I am wrong and here is the chapter and verse
that says I'm wrong. With that, a person shouldn't tell someone they are wrong without stating chapter and verse.
Now questioning something is fine though if done in a reasonable manner...

Petty Dwarves
Oliver Schick (23/11/02)
'But now at last they had dwindled and died out of Middle-earth, all save Mim and his two sons ...' (Sil.)
The only possibility for a survival of the Petty-dwarves would have been for Ibun, Mim's surviving son, to have
taken a dwarvish wife. How that might have been possible would be up to a skilled story-teller, given that the
dwarves protected their women very well. Even after they had children, more spouses would have to be brought
in from dwarvish stock, making the putative later Petty-dwarves not 'real' Petty-dwarves in anything except
possibly continuing to be dwarvish outlaws, and having one 'proper' Petty-dwarvish ancestor. (Also, inbreeding
would have been a problem.) Still, people always think they need more different races to make M-e colourful,
and I expect many more to be invented.
Gabriele Quaglia (24/11/02)
Hi Oliver,
>'But now at last they had dwindled and died out of Middle-earth, all save Mim and his two sons ...' (Sil.)
>The only possibility for a survival of the Petty-dwarves would have been for Ibun, Mim's surviving son, to have
taken a dwarvish wife.
The Silmarillion is the reckoning of 1stA history by the Elves and Dnedain. If they didn't know that other Petty
Dwarves existed, they would believe them to be extinct. Given the secrecy of Petty-dwarves, it is possible that
some of them survived well into the Third Age, though never thriving.
Mike Berg (24/11/02)
So we must take every line as absolute fact.
So Ogres are in middle Earth sense Bilbo mentioned them in the Hobbit. Nowhere does it mention more than one
Mouth of Sauron. How were Trolls made of stone when Morgoth could only twist already living things. At first
Tolkien was going to have Dwarves more sinister. All those later published lost tales are full of contradictions.
Ect................
You must have hated all the ICE "MERP" products.
Anyway, maybe it was just thought they were the last, Sauron thought all of Isildur heir were dead ,but he was
wrong.
David Wendelken (24/11/02)
Remember that the Silmarillion is a set of tales (mostly) told by the elves to other elves. It is perfectly possible
that they were mistaken on some points, and poetic license must also be accounted for.
Paul Robinson (24/11/02)
David pointed out:
So Ogres are in middle Earth sense Bilbo mentioned them in the Hobbit.
I personally have wondered why someone hasn't run with that. Even though it is only one line, it is a lot more to
base something on than many things ICE came up with. Maybe something I can use for Mirkwood...
EJ Womble (24/11/02)
Paul,
I have Ogres and Hill Giants in my 4A campaigns (they were both the result of Sauron's last attempts to better
Orcs and Trolls - by creating (breeding) a race of creature which were both very strong and could move about
freely in sunlight - before he was destroyed).

After the fall of Sauron, both races escaped the confines of Mordor and disappeared into the mountains, hills and
vales of the freelands of ME. By FA 350 (the time of my campaigns) both races can be encountered (on rare
occassions) as far north and west as the Misty Mountains and Rhudaur (certainly they would have made it to
Mirkwood as well). However, I can't speak for their use in ME prior to the 4A
David Keogh (27/11/02)
Hi Oliver/Gabriele
Actually, that's not the bit of the Silmarillion I was thinking of.
The bit I'm thinking of is somewhere after the death of Turin when Hurin goes to Nargothrond and reclaims the
Nauglamir. Mim has taken ownership of the ransacked caves there because his people started building them
before the elves took them over. Mim tries to bar Hurin from entering 'his' caves but Hurin tells him who he is
and that he knows who betrayed Turin (Mim). At this point, Mim does the last speech thing before Hurin slays
him and in that speech it is Mim himself who says he is the last of his people in middle earth. Hence the book
does make it really quite clear that Mims people were no more - either that or Mim's memory concerning his
own son Ibun was a bit vague about Ibun still being breathing.
I do like the concept represented by petty dwarves as a source for new material though and I had some thoughts
about how that might fit without contradicting Mims last words. (Apologies if I'm being too picky about this...
And this is all just personal opinion and all that)
Really it all depends on how you think of petty dwarves. The more I think about it, the less I'm thinking of them
as a different race to regular dwarves at all and in that case, maybe there is no reason why a similar chain of
events couldn't overtake a.n.other group of dwarves anywhere else, hence problem solved.
Some reasoning:
'Petty dwarves' was simply a name given to a particular group of 'normal' dwarves by the elves who considered
them 'lesser' than the other dwarves because they had lost much of their lore and smithcraft (things prized and
respected by the elves) and taken instead to ways of secrecy, stealth and trickery (things the elves would
naturally respect less) whereas the regular dwarves held to their historical ways and were wise in lore and
smithcraft - not to mention preffering a stand up fight to sneaking around any day.
The only distinguishing physical characteristic (I can remember) mentioned is that they did exhibit a more
'hunched stance' than regular dwarves - but then maybe that's not a 'racial' thing necessarily, maybe its more your
standard fantasy depiction of the sneaky type? That and they'd have a heck of a lot less pride than their stiff
bearded relatives. Not to mention that they were all real old. Mim was described as 'very old even for dwarven
kind' so his sons were likely 'fairly old even for dwarven kind'.
So what we have is a group of dwarves who were exiled from the east and wander all over the place, ending up
in Beleriand. They are no longer in the 'big dwarven community' but settle in small groups at several places in
beleriand. And they must have spent a fairly long time being pretty nomadic to get there which would be harder
on dwarves than other races maybe (since its specifically stated several places in the books that dwarves don't
travel much).
Maybe this is why they developed the traits they had and lost much of their lore/smithcraft. Their lifestyle didn't
support the 'old ways' anymore.
And if that's the case, similar things might easily happen to any group of dwarves who get to be too small a
community/too cut off from the big dwarven burgs/forced to move around too much.
So Mim might have been the last of 'his people' (the group exiled from the east) but maybe 'petty dwarves' don't
have to have ever been related to this original group.
Which ends up being pretty much what Gabriele says but avoids conflicting with what (to me) is a pretty clear
depiction in the book that Mims people died out completely, since the book doesn't so much put it as an
assumption by the elves and edain that they did but more as the relaying by them of knowledge from Mim who
would have known for sure.
Gabriele Quaglia (27/11/02)
Hi David,

> I do like the concept represented by petty dwarves as a source for new material though and I had some
thoughts about how that might fit without contradicting Mims last words. (Apologies if I'm being too picky
about this... And this is all just personal opinion and all that)
Mike Berg is writing something about Petty-dwarves and their origin. I shared some ideas with him (and sent
them to the ML, though I can't remember when), but I don't know if in the end he used them. The whole idea was
about Petty-dwarves being cursed by Sauron and perverted by exposure to celebur (Sindarin name for uranium).
Of course, this does not prevent Dwarven communities from turning Petty. However, they should also be
outlaws: else, I think the conquest of Nargothrond by Felagund, who drove off Petty-dwarves, would have
triggered vengeance by either Nogrod or Belegost or both. You know how Dwarves respect blood bonds?
Doriath fell only because Thingol refused to pay some craftsmen...
Some ideas...