The Stockwood Scrolls
Nine human ethnic groups are widely recognized in Toril, though over a dozen others can be found in more localized areas. The main nine are listed below, as well as the main areas they can be found (though centuries of trade, political alliances, and the diasporas of war mean that they can found almost anywhere in Faerûn).
Shorter and slighter in build than most other humans, Calishites have dusky brown skin, hair, and eyes. They’re found primarily in southwest Faerûn, such as in the namesake nation of Calimshan, and they are also a major ethnic group in Tethyr and Amn.
Chondathans are slender, tawny skinned folk with brown hair that ranges from almost blond to almost black. Most are tall and have green or brown eyes, but these traits are hardly universal. Humans of Chondathan descent tend to dominate the central lands of Faerûn, around the Inner Sea, such as Cormyr, the Dalelands, the Dragon Coast, the Great Dale, and Sembia.
Found primarily in the north of Faerûn east of the Anauroch, Damarans are of moderate height and build, with skin hues ranging from tawny to fair. Their hair is usually brown or black, and their eye colour varies widely, though brown is most common. Their people are most common in Damara, Vaasa, Narfell, Thesk, Moonsea, the Great Dale, and Aglarond.
Illuskans are tall, fair-skinned folk with blue or steely gray eyes, also known as Northlanders. Most have raven-black hair, but those that inhabit the extreme northwest have blond, red, or light brown hair. They are most common in the North, such as in Neverwinter and the Silver Marches, as well as the city of Waterdeep.
Dominant in the eastern and southeastern shores of the Inner Sea, the Mulan are generally tall, slim, and amber-skinned, with eyes of hazel or brown. Their hair ranges from black to dark brown, but in the lands where the Mulan are most prominent, nobles and many other Mulan shave off their hair. The Mulan are most common in Chessenta, Tymanther, High Imaskar, and Thay.
Most often found east of the Inner Sea and often intermingled with the Mulan, Rashemis tend to be short, stout, and muscular. They usually have dusky skin, dark eyes, and thick black hair. They are common in Rashemen, Thesk, Thay, and Aglarond.
The Shou are the most numerous and powerful ethnic group in Kara-Tur, far to the east of Faerûn. They are yellowish-bronze in hue, with black hair and dark eyes. Shou surnames are usually presented before the given name. The Shou are not common in Faerûn, but there are some communities in Thesk and the Dragon Coast.
Widespread along the entire Sword Coast at the western edge of Faerûn, Tethyrians are od medium build and height, with dusky skin that tends to grow fairer the farther north they dwell. Their hair and eye color varies widely, but brown hair and blue eyes are the most common. They are most common in Tethyr, Amn, the Western Heartlands, the Dragon Coast, Cormyr, the North, Waterdeep, and Calimshan.
Native to the southern shore of the Inner Sea, the Turami people are generally tall and muscular, with dark mahogany skin, curly black hair, and dark eyes. The Turami are most common in Turmish, Chessenta, and the Dragon Coast.
Among the races of Faerûn, humans are the most numerous and widespread. Humans are builders and destroyers who have fleeting life spans that can drive them to momentous accomplishments or simple pleasures. Some say humans will control all of Faerûn by virtue of their numbers alone. Although many humans are content to live simple lives, never looking beyond the farms and fences that surround their communities, there are always those who insist on expanding and conquering.
Other races attribute humans’ capacity for survival to their adaptability. Even dwarves, a race known for obstinacy, sometimes call humans stubborn for their ability to thrive despite all odds. However, not all humans do prosper, and in many nations, humans suffer at the hands of others, serving as slaves and common laborers. Although humans exist across the continents, their quality of living varies to a greater degree than that of any other race.
On the whole, humans live free and relatively prosperous lives. Most members of the race are content to carve out a living in their little corner of the world. Many dream of lives filled with glamor or luxury, but only the small few whose ambition matches their goals ever succeed in rising above their lot in life. These examples include adventurers, conquerors, mages, and priests—those who go to any length to overcome adversity and the challenges of their heritage.
Humans run the gamut in height, weight, complexion, eye color, and hair color, all of which characteristics mostly depend on the region from which they originate. Northerners have light complexions and hair, and they are often taller and more brawny than humans to the south. A southern human has darker features and is shorter and thinner. However, such regional distinctions are undependable, for as commonplace as humans are, one rarely knows a human’s origin with certainty without asking that individual.
Humans of Faerûn are considered to be middle-aged at around 35, old by 53, and are considered venerable by age 70. Though most people die from pestilence, violence, or simply infection before they are venerable, the oldest humans can live to be over 100 even without the aid of magic.