The Stockwood Scrolls
The gold dwarves of Great Rift and elsewhere in the South are a stocky and muscular people. They stand about 4 feet tall and weigh as much as other dwarves. Unlike their northern kin, gold dwarves have dark skin, deeply tanned to dark brown. They wear their black to dark brown hair long, and males (and rarely females) sport long beards, carefully oiled and groomed. Gold dwarves usually have hazel or brown eyes, and green eyes are considered lucky.
Expert craftsfolk, gold dwarves take pride in their personal equipment and often wield weapons featuring intricate engravings, scrollwork, and acid etchings, all of which depict scenes from dwarven history and creatures their ancestors defeated. The attention to detail extends farther than their weapons, of course; the most innocuous items—combs, brushes, backpacks—feature lovingly wrought scenes and images on their surfaces. Their armor is exceptional, and each piece is a work of peerless art, making gold dwarf armor some of the most coveted in the world.
Gold dwarves have a reputation for arrogance, pride, and disdain for other races. Where shield dwarves frequently make alliances with their neighbors, gold dwarves have traditionally shunned them and extended their haughtiness even to their dwarven kin. The destruction of the last century has dulled this pride, and for the first time in memory, the gold dwarves now welcome outsiders into their communities. An influx of adventurers and explorers drawn by the lure of excitement, fabulous treasure, and ancient secrets has managed to strengthen the gold dwarf settlements in the Great Rift and has done much to slow the drow attacks that test their defenses.
The lineages of both the gold dwarves and the shield dwarves springs from the first dwarven kingdom of Bhaerynden, founded beneath the earth where the Great Rift now sits. While the shield dwarves left that realm to found Shanatar in the west, the gold dwarves are those that stayed behind. Although Bhaerynden was lost to the drow, and the caverns were later destroyed, the Great Rift was formed from the collapsed realm, and the gold dwarves still live there today.