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The Oni
2013-10-31, 04:25 AM
Never in my life have I seen a Dwarf that I thought could be under thirty, save for Lineage II's lady-dwarves with the physiques of fifteen year olds - but I'm pretty sure we can just chalk that one up to "lol anime" and leave it at that.

What does a dwarf child look like? A dwarf teenager? Are they even shorter than normal dwarves? 2/3rds the height of a human child? Are they born with beards and beer bellies or are dwarf children merely seen and not heard?

Maybe Dwarves keep their boys out of sight of human visitors because they're deathly afraid that someone will figure out that there's a time in their lives that their faces aren't covered in glorious beard.

These are the burning questions...

OldTrees1
2013-10-31, 04:51 AM
Being mammals, dwarfs babies are small enough to fit in the womb of a female dwarf.

Lord Raziere
2013-10-31, 05:01 AM
Personally I think dwarven boys all have five o'clock shadows until puberty. then their real beard comes in and the dwarves celebrate it as the boy finally becoming a man.

JHShadon
2013-10-31, 05:08 AM
Personally I think dwarven boys all have five o'clock shadows until puberty. then their real beard comes in and the dwarves celebrate it as the boy finally becoming a man.

This celebration involves more beer than most Dwarven celebrations.

OldTrees1
2013-10-31, 05:13 AM
Personally I think dwarven boys all have five o'clock shadows until puberty. then their real beard comes in and the dwarves celebrate it as the boy finally becoming a man.

Ooh. I like that theory!

An alternate theory is that the beards grow continuously and that the length of a hair can determine the age of the dwarf.

TheCountAlucard
2013-10-31, 05:13 AM
My dwarf hacker, L3NN„, was of medium build (scrawny as hell for a dwarf), and had the small beginnings of a beard just on his chin, as a sixteen-year-old. He was also on the paler side, but that was because he didn't get a hell of a lot of sun. He was already "adult" dwarf height, though.

jamieth
2013-10-31, 06:06 AM
I can't find the exact quote, but I believe Terry Pratchett once stated that dwarfs looked like short, sturdy, bearded old men by the age of five... and then looked pretty much exactly the same three centuries later. Granted, that only concerns Discworld dwarfs, not the d&d ones...

hamishspence
2013-10-31, 07:19 AM
Haven't seen much in the way of 3.0-3.5 art depicting them.

Female dwarves tend to be depicted as beardless in 3.0 and later editions.

Mastikator
2013-10-31, 07:58 AM
Dwarves are never young. Dwarves sculpt dwarf statues out of the mountain and then use dwarven rune magic to make them come alive.

Grim Portent
2013-10-31, 08:14 AM
Well in Dwarf Fortress dwarves are born with stubble that grows into a beard in short order. So dwarf mothers carry around babies with beards like an adult dwarf, which is a glorious mental image.

BlckDv
2013-10-31, 08:22 AM
All depends on your view of their origin; Mastikator sites one out of real mythology.

Tongue in cheek I'd say they were born as a ball of hair like a tribble that develops the rest of the body, and when they can clearly be told to have beard/hair separation, they are an adult.

Given that it is common n fiction for the loss of a beard to be a major badge of shame; we can assume that either dwarves have beards from very early childhood; or that one can tell the difference between an adolescent and a shaven young adult visually.

Generally; I'd follow basic mammal rules if you're sticking with basic D&D Dwarves. Start off with big heads and torsos, limbs grow out (but not so much as they are stocky) as they age, hair becomes thicker, secondary sexual characteristics develop, etc. I'd suggest that dwarven children may in fact seem to waddle as they would have legs even shorter in ratio to body size than human toddlers.

Frankly; I don't like the D&D 3.0-present trend of drawing dwarven females as beardless. It seems to play up to the angle of making them "more attractive" to human males, which is just silly, and it also implies many social elements which D&D pays lip service to avoiding. To take away female dwarves beards but keep all the cultural support of the value and importance of the beard implies that only Dwarven Men are able to hold onto the virtues their society values, and undercuts the "non-gender rolled" trope of D&D's default flavor in modern editions.

Segev
2013-10-31, 08:32 AM
Well, BlckDv beat me to it, but...

Dwarves are born when two dwarves love each other enough to weave together cuttings of their beards. This baby beard is carried and nurtured by the parents' beards (traded as needed for convenience purposes) until it grows a dwarf toddler capable of learning to groom it himself.

Segev
2013-10-31, 08:43 AM
Frankly; I don't like the D&D 3.0-present trend of drawing dwarven females as beardless. It seems to play up to the angle of making them "more attractive" to human males, which is just silly, and it also implies many social elements which D&D pays lip service to avoiding. To take away female dwarves beards but keep all the cultural support of the value and importance of the beard implies that only Dwarven Men are able to hold onto the virtues their society values, and undercuts the "non-gender rolled" trope of D&D's default flavor in modern editions.
To me, the "even dwarven women have beards" thing tends to fail every time it's taken seriously. When treated as a joke, it works as a joke, but if you want your dwarves to be a "serious" race, giving dwarf women beards is tricky, at best. Yes, this is due to human ideas of masculinity and femininity, but railing about it doesn't change it. It would take a really creative and well-developed setting and dwarven society/physiology/etc. to make it work, come off seriously, and come off well.

Part of the issue, of course, being that dwarves remain humanoids who, like elves and orcs and halflings, share a lot of human characteristics. When you shift to "dwarves are carved from stone," you don't need sexes at all anymore and the problem goes away.

However, as a slightly distinct proposal, what if dwarves are universally bald as males, but grow beards from birth. Females have a more human-like head of hair. The dwarven language doesn't actually have a word for "hair;" their word translates as "beard," and female dwarven "beards" are the hair on top of their head. Edit: Alternatively, dwarves are born hairless ("beardless") regardless of gender, and only at puberty do they grow their beards: men on their faces; women on their heads. A shaven dwarf - if it's not a horrific shame - would thus look very young to other dwarves. end edit

Like dwarven males, the females are very proud of their beards. Whatever standards of honor and shame attach to a male dwarf's facial hair attaches to a female dwarf's head-hair. Both are, to dwarves, "beards."

Human men look "girly" to dwarves if they aren't bald, and elven men, unable to grow beards but often with full heads of hair (not to mention delicate features) are practically just "really skinny girls" to dwarves who don't know better. And even those who know better still have to mentally check themselves unless they're really used to dealing with non-dwarves.


Dwarven theater in at least one dwarven culture has a comedy tradition of cross-dressing perpetrated by male dwarves wrapping their beards up and piling them on top of their heads or trailing them down their backs, and female dwarves tying their beards down around the top of their heads under their chins (rather than down their backs as is "properly feminine").

Another dwarven culture might popularize such "androgyny" as a form of elect beauty, like the high French Court with all the wigs and makeup. Piling hair on top of the head if male and tying it under the chin in elaborate decoration if female might be a mark of aristocratic fashion. (Perhaps the aforementioned comedy tradition even began as a not-so-subtle mockery of this aristocratic class.)

Fouredged Sword
2013-10-31, 08:52 AM
I once wrote a wold that had dwarves born beardless. Adulthood came when the dwarf developed enough psionic ability to manifest Sustenance and thus no longer be a burden on the mountain home. Food was scarce, but only children ate.

Once the dwarf obtained that ability, they left their family and joined one of the guilds. They braided their beard (men) or hair (women) from an tangled mess into a series of braids that depicted the guild they joined.

A dwarf that was kicked out of their guild would have his guild knots shaved, and would be considered a child again until their beard grew out and a guild accepted them into membership.

Besieging a dwarven hold was considered a nightmare. Even if you blocked the water and starved them for years, all you would do is kill their children. The rest of the clan would survive and hunt you down for centuries.

Mono Vertigo
2013-10-31, 10:04 AM
Very much like an adult Dwarf, you know, for they were born old. Just like James May.
Okay, okay, I'm out.

Psyren
2013-10-31, 10:26 AM
Isn't Pikel Bouldershoulder pretty young?

Mark Hall
2013-10-31, 10:35 AM
While Joel Rosenberg (RIP) doesn't paint much of a picture of young dwarves, in his Not Really the Prisoner of Zenda, we learn that having a beard is a sign of adulthood in dwarves. Losing a beard is a sign of shame; having a beard shaved off is a great insult.

FWIW, I tend to picture young dwarves as looking pretty much similar to young humans, though proportioned like a dwarf... shorter legs, thicker chest, heavier facial features.

Scow2
2013-10-31, 11:06 AM
With my expert knowledge of dwarves, males are born with the start of their beards (Though they remain rather light until puberty), and both genders are born with beer bellies. While drinking alcohol while pregnant is dangerous for humans, dwarves require the energy stored in alcohol to survive. Dwarf babies are extremely small, allowing them to be born as a Standard Action (Instead of over several hours), and their beer bellies sustain them long enough for the mother to take her time getting around to feeding them (Many dwarves are born on the battlefield). Although they are small, they have oversized arms, and sufficient strength to use an axe from birth as well, so they can fend for themselves and fight alongside their mothers when born on a battlefield.

As they age... they tend to grow more linearly than exponentially, with strong limb development earlier than in humans - they are stocky throughout their lives. They grow wide, then up to match their width.


Besieging a dwarven hold was considered a nightmare. Even if you blocked the water and starved them for years, all you would do is kill their children. The rest of the clan would survive and hunt you down for centuries.In what world do you live where besieging a dwarf fortress doesn't end in hot, fiery death for the attackers at the ends of massive magma-cannon pumps?

AstralFire
2013-10-31, 11:20 AM
I agree with Segev. The only way to make all dwarves have beards and have it be taken seriously when they're already a race of funny humans is if Dwarves don't have sexes.

Discworld Dwarves get away with it, but:

Continued exposure to human society is causing them to rethink their own values of femininity and masculinity. Loss of beard is not unthinkable in a generation, with Pratchettian Rapid Social Development.
Discworld as a whole is an overdeveloped joke, and Pratchett has mostly shyed away from touching on the subject whenever something's serious and dwarf development is not specifically the focus.


I bet that if you counted all the serious attempts to play a bearded dwarf female in the world, you'd barely catch sand and most of them have read Discworld.

Slipperychicken
2013-10-31, 12:05 PM
With my expert knowledge of dwarves, males are born with the start of their beards (Though they remain rather light until puberty), and both genders are born with beer bellies. While drinking alcohol while pregnant is dangerous for humans, dwarves require the energy stored in alcohol to survive. Dwarf babies are extremely small, allowing them to be born as a Standard Action (Instead of over several hours), and their beer bellies sustain them long enough for the mother to take her time getting around to feeding them (Many dwarves are born on the battlefield). Although they are small, they have oversized arms, and sufficient strength to use an axe from birth as well, so they can fend for themselves and fight alongside their mothers when born on a battlefield.


You know, this does a lot to explain racial weapon proficiency.

And of course, being born mid-battle is a sign of the mother's strength and Dwarfiness, in addition to being an indicator for the child's success in life.


He was also on the paler side, but that was because he didn't get a hell of a lot of sun.

The sun? Leave that for the Elves. A true Dwarf needs nothing but hard rock, purple mushrooms, and copious amounts of alcohol. Which does leave them with a lack of skin pigmentation (which might explain why dwarves are almost always white), but it's not like you'd really notice under the beard.

hamishspence
2013-10-31, 12:07 PM
I bet that if you counted all the serious attempts to play a bearded dwarf female in the world, you'd barely catch sand and most of them have read Discworld.

I think there's one or two Forgotten Realms Moonshae novels that mention bearded female dwarves- not sure if they postdate Guards, Guards though.

Malak'ai
2013-10-31, 12:08 PM
I have to ask, where did the common theory that Dwarven women have beards come from?
I know the joke has been around for decades (if not longer), but I have no idea where it started.

To answer the OP, I'd have to agree that they'd look like human babies but with shorter limbs and a stouter body.

hamishspence
2013-10-31, 12:09 PM
In the Appendix to Lord of the Rings- there's a mention that there are very few Dwarf women- they mostly stay at home- and when they do travel, they are similar enough to the men that most people can't tell them apart.

ellindsey
2013-10-31, 12:19 PM
My dwarves all have beards from a young age. They also don't have gender until they pair off. Like the clownfish, when two dwarves decide to become a couple the larger one will become female, and the smaller one will become male. Many dwarves never pair off and remain genderless their entire lives. This is all completely unknown to outsiders, since all dwarves look the same to them, and dwarves don't discuss it with outsiders because their reproductive habits are none of your damn business.

Angel Bob
2013-10-31, 12:31 PM
That...

...is a really good question. I'm surprised this is the first time the subject has come up.

My D&D group places a lot of emphasis on dwarves and their beards, to the point of female dwarves being bearded, so no doubt they would decree dwarves to boast full beards from the moment they're born. So that's my two cents.

Mark Hall
2013-10-31, 01:47 PM
I have to ask, where did the common theory that Dwarven women have beards come from?
I know the joke has been around for decades (if not longer), but I have no idea where it started.

Also, if you look at the art for the A series of modules, the female dwarf pregen has a beard. Dwarves Deep, an FR product, mentions dwarven beards.

BlckDv
2013-10-31, 02:04 PM
Segev;

While I've never had trouble with Dwarves all have beards being taken seriously in my gaming; I will give you credit for a very excellent suggestion for a way to present a cultural/anthropological solution to the dilemma of presenting what appear to humans to be beardless women while keeping the central place of beards in dwarf lore, and even building on the classic dwarfs think elves are feminine lore item.

I've had some groups that play up the angle that dwarves are more androgynous than humans, or less focused on gender identity, while others have embraced the beards and still wanted to portray women as distinctive, positing different beard styles and grooming by gender, etc.

Some delve fairly deep into sociology and one group even posited a solution out of The Republic; Dwavres don't have monogamous nuclear families, but their bravest and most capable warriors and craftsmen have scheduled orgies (segregated by Clan and thus playing up the Clan as the key unit of relationship) and collectively consider all the children born from those they participate in as their children. Their "Spouse" is thus not a mate but a partner, and Dwarves don't worry about the gender of their partner.

Lord Vukodlak
2013-10-31, 03:20 PM
In my own setting I'm developing for my E6 campaign Dwarven beards were used to identify clan. Different clans would style there beards in different ways. If a Dwarven male was banished from his clan he'd be cursed to be beardless so all would know his mark of shame.

However after the destruction of the Dwarven kingdoms and enduring centuries of enslavement some young Dwarves have discarded their beards because the clans no longer exist and The Magisters who enslaved their people for centuries used beard cutting as a method of control.

But many Dwarves still consider the beard important a symbol of their lost Kingdoms and culture.

Ravens_cry
2013-10-31, 05:51 PM
In the Appendix to Lord of the Rings- there's a mention that there are very few Dwarf women- they mostly stay at home- and when they do travel, they are similar enough to the men that most people can't tell them apart.
Exactly. Unlike humans, elves, and hobbits, Dwarves were created by Aulė. I don't find it surprising they should be rather different from those races.
I don't see it a joke, any more than elves having pointy ears is a 'joke'.

TaintedDeity
2013-10-31, 08:38 PM
I wasn't aware female dwarves having beards was a joke; I take that **** seriously. I love non-human races being... well, non-human.

I like the idea of dwarves being born with soft downy, tufty beards, like longer peach fuzz. They only grow in the big, proper beards when they reach puberty.

Grim Portent
2013-10-31, 08:47 PM
In The Dwarves by Markus Heitz dwarf babies are born beardless but it starts to grow slowly immediately after birth so it gets quite long after a few years but it takes an age to grow back if shaved. The women don't grow beards in that, they just get a sort of wispy downy fuzz instead.

Ravens_cry
2013-10-31, 10:28 PM
I wasn't aware female dwarves having beards was a joke; I take that **** seriously. I love non-human races being... well, non-human.

Heh, me too. Which is why Elves are the evolved seed spore of single species ecosystem in one world I had in mind, and I like that Mialee looks like some kind of orange space lemur.


I like the idea of dwarves being born with soft downy, tufty beards, like longer peach fuzz. They only grow in the big, proper beards when they reach puberty.
That certainly works. Maybe female dwarves keep the soft beards past puberty, but dwarven testosterone makes the males' all bristly.

Darklord Bright
2013-11-01, 01:58 AM
Since this has segued into discussion about female dwarves, allow me to throw in my own head-canon.

I never liked bearded female dwarves. It always struck me as a rather silly one-off joke that ran on too far and was taken a little too seriously by some, but it wouldn't be the first thing that the fantasy community flanderized :smalltongue:. However, when I design setting that include dwarves, my explanation for the "Dwarf women have beards" stereotype is actually based on an age-old cultural misconception.

The first humans to encounter dwarves saw that the men had these finely-kept beards with many fashion styles. When they caught their first glimpse of a female dwarf, they were flabbergasted to discover that she had hair under her chin as well, similarly styled. However, closer inspection would reveal that the style of female dwarves was actually to grow one's hair long and then wrap it over the shoulders, tying it under the neck. The cultural fashion looked, at first glance, very much like a beard.

Humans would wink and nudge those who had not met female dwarves in person, claiming that they had 'beards'. Among those people who had never seen them, the joke's origins were lost. The further out from the source you went, the more they took the comment at face value. So began the stereotype.

Anyways, getting back on topic, I figure the only real difference between baby dwarves and baby humans is that they are smaller (but wider) and with thicker skills and larger noses. I just really like giving my dwarves big cartoony noses, for some reason.

Ravens_cry
2013-11-01, 03:15 AM
Since this has segued into discussion about female dwarves, allow me to throw in my own head-canon.

I never liked bearded female dwarves. It always struck me as a rather silly one-off joke that ran on too far and was taken a little too seriously by some, but it wouldn't be the first thing that the fantasy community flanderized :smalltongue:. However, when I design setting that include dwarves, my explanation for the "Dwarf women have beards" stereotype is actually based on an age-old cultural misconception.

The first humans to encounter dwarves saw that the men had these finely-kept beards with many fashion styles. When they caught their first glimpse of a female dwarf, they were flabbergasted to discover that she had hair under her chin as well, similarly styled. However, closer inspection would reveal that the style of female dwarves was actually to grow one's hair long and then wrap it over the shoulders, tying it under the neck. The cultural fashion looked, at first glance, very much like a beard.

Humans would wink and nudge those who had not met female dwarves in person, claiming that they had 'beards'. Among those people who had never seen them, the joke's origins were lost. The further out from the source you went, the more they took the comment at face value. So began the stereotype.

Anyways, getting back on topic, I figure the only real difference between baby dwarves and baby humans is that they are smaller (but wider) and with thicker skills and larger noses. I just really like giving my dwarves big cartoony noses, for some reason.
Why is 'big cartoony noses' not a "rather silly one off joke", but female dwarves with beards are? :smallconfused:
Personal preference is personal preference, of course, but it seems a tad arbitrary.

Darklord Bright
2013-11-01, 03:25 AM
Why is 'big cartoony noses' not a "rather silly one off joke", but female dwarves with beards are? :smallconfused:
Personal preference is personal preference, of course, but it seems a tad arbitrary.

Because it's an artistic thing I do, in the cartoony style I draw in? It's not something I demand out of my dwarves in fantasy, nor do I pretend it's not just a cute thing I like to do. Also, it's not a one-off. Also also, "big noses" aren't quite on the same cultural level as "bearded women", when it comes to that sort of thing, seeing as big noses are fairly common and not seen as a joke or a spectacle by default.

Ravens_cry
2013-11-01, 03:41 AM
Because it's an artistic thing I do, in the cartoony style I draw in? It's not something I demand out of my dwarves in fantasy, nor do I pretend it's not just a cute thing I like to do. Also, it's not a one-off. Also also, "big noses" aren't quite on the same cultural level as "bearded women", when it comes to that sort of thing, seeing as big noses are fairly common and not seen as a joke or a spectacle by default.
If you are drawing them in a cartoony style, I would say they are. Besides, bearded woman also exist in real life, and I doubt they would like very much being considered 'a joke'.

Darklord Bright
2013-11-01, 03:47 AM
If you are drawing them in a cartoony style, I would say they are. Besides, bearded woman also exist in real life, and I doubt they would like very much being considered 'a joke'.

Whether or not you or I find the concept bearded women amusing is irrelevant, really (I do not). The fact is that on a cultural level, it's a thing that's often been viewed as amusing or shocking, and so most real-world cultures assume it to be so by default. These are a lot of the people who will be reading/viewing/whatever any work with bearded dwarf women in it, and are likely to be the people perpetuating the jokes surrounding it, as well. Whether or not you or I personally care for the jokes doesn't really have a bearing on whether or not said jokes will be ingrained into the public consciousness surrounding the thing.

The jokes which, I will repeat, stemmed from a single one-off line in a Tolkien appendice, if geeks are to be believed. Compared to "I draw cartoony characters and my cartoony dwarves have cartoonishly large noses", it's a very different thing. One's an artistic style, and one's been thrown into an echo chamber. If other people saw my dwarves and assumed that was how their dwarves should be, and then copied such things until they drove that single trait so deep into the ground that they encountered Duergar, then perhaps it would be equivalent. :smalltongue:

But then, I don't like Scottish dwarves that much, either. It's one of those things that's incredibly common because somebody else did it, and then D&D perpetuated it.

I will repeat for posterity that I did not mean to imply I found bearded women to be a joke, simply that that's the common public perception of it. I'll apologize if it came off otherwise, I tend to type before I properly articulate, just a little.

Ravens_cry
2013-11-01, 04:42 AM
I think we've had this conversation before.
Let's look at another generally (but not absolutely) fictional feature.
Pointed ears are frequently associated with puckish tricksters, Puck himself being one example. Santa's 'elves', Old Nick, Mister Mxyzptlk, and fairies of many description are also frequently drawing or described this way. If someone has actually pointed ears, it is considered somewhat 'shocking' and, especially if self-inflicted, 'amusing'. Does that mean that is the only way creatures with pointed ears can be seen in fiction? Heck no!
Creatures with pointed ears can run the gamut from the most sombre Vulcan to the most frivolous Disney pixie and many more ways besides.
I see no jokes.
I am not saying female dwarves have to have beards, but I don't see why it has to be otherwise or that it automatically makes them 'a joke'.
Tolkien, I highly doubt, was joking.
The man was a consummate world builder, and if he wanted his dwarven woman to have beards, than his dwarven woman had beards, probably stemming from how dwarf women in Norse myths are extremely rarely mentioned.

Darklord Bright
2013-11-01, 04:50 AM
Might point out that pointed ears are seen as demonic in Japan - which is why their elves have horizontally-pointing ears. Pointed ears aren't universally seen as a sign of trickters, which is why they're used in so many different ways. Also, if we're being fair, Tolkien never said the dwarf women had beards. It was what was assumed by "Similar to dwarf men" and then oft repeated.

I don't care for it, but I don't demand that anyone agrees with me about it either. That seems a silly thing to demand, really. "How dare your fictional creatures have beards!" I would cry, "How dare you have different tastes to me, that only occasionally become relevant to my life!"

No, I'm not like that. All I really wanted to do was say how I'd personally do it, and then point out that I have weird preferences myself (which I admit are silly). I've always felt the beards stereotype to be rooted in young nerds snickering about it in their formative years, and I'll always identify it as that whether or not that's fair to do so.

I apologize if my sense of humour comes off as abrasive, as well. That's a thing I sometimes forget - tone doesn't really carry through text and pixels. I'll politely bow out of the conversation if I've accidentally made people feel uncomfortable on any level, since it wasn't my intention to argue about the stereotype. Anyone is free to call me a horrible person for it whether or not I'm here, though. :smalltongue:

Narren
2013-11-01, 12:06 PM
I have to say, I'm really surprised to realize that in all my years of gaming, I've only just now even thought about what a dwarf child may look like.

kieza
2013-11-01, 12:21 PM
With my dwarves, both genders have thick, full sideburns starting as children. The women treat them as part of their hair, the men treat them as part of their beards.

Both genders also have thick, luxuriant hair in general. Dwarven bards would probably enjoy glam rock.

Mark Hall
2013-11-01, 12:59 PM
With my dwarves, both genders have thick, full sideburns starting as children. The women treat them as part of their hair, the men treat them as part of their beards.

Both genders also have thick, luxuriant hair in general. Dwarven bards would probably enjoy glam rock.

Fat bottomed girls they make the dwarven world go 'round!

Segev
2013-11-01, 01:10 PM
The reason "female dwarves have beards" comes off as a joke is because it evokes the image of "the bearded lady," which is a deliberate juxtaposition of a nearly singularly-identifying secondary sexual characteristic of human males with the obviously wrong gender.

It will always be taken at least somewhat as a joke for the same reason that a "man with boobs" will: it's off in a way that either is uncomfortable or humorous depending on context.

I hope this doesn't derail the thread now. I am not making any moral or ethical or political statement nor judgment. I'm just saying: we view beards as "very manly" things for a person to have. We don't view "pointed ears" as particularly associated with one sex or the other. We have extant comedy and (more cruelly) freak shows featuring "bearded ladies" and "manly women," and the dwarfess-with-a-beard will always trigger similar reactions.

BlckDv
2013-11-01, 03:33 PM
I think we're just going to have to agree to disagree Segev.

Dwarven Women do not evoke the Bearded Women of Circus and Carnival fame to me or to most people I know any more than Ettins evoke Conjoined Twins or Dwarves in general evoke the "Clever Midget Clown" that outwits the normal sized clowns in many classic circuses.

Dwarves are a unique species with separate cultural and biology from humans in all fantasy I know of, and while it is fine to have humans in the game world expect dwarven women to be like human women and be surprised, humored, or shocked at differences, I don't see any reason that players capable of accepting that elves and dwarves populate the fantasy world can not also accept them having different norms of appearance than the humans of our own world without having to share the same reaction they would to meeting a human with the same appearance in reality.

While true on the pointed ears, I must express doubt if you claim to be generally unaware that elven appearance is very stereotypically seen as delicate and feminine by human standards, but within elven society they don't see their men as unmanly, and indeed the ability of a Half-Elf to grow a beard is a plot point of some note in at least one very popular fantasy setting.

Elderand
2013-11-01, 04:30 PM
Want to know about dwarf children do you ?

Well, let me tel you about dwarf children. Fact is dwarves have sex by entangling their beard together. From that, one of the dwarf will have a new patch of beard grow and after a while it detaches (incidently that little bit of beard is grown on alcohol, which is why dwarves do not drink but quench.)

No you seen that moss on cavern walls ? That ain't no moss lad, that's a colony of prepubescent dwarves. Dwarves don't grow beards, dwarves grow bodies, they have the same amount of beard their whole life.

Blueiji
2013-11-01, 04:35 PM
I once wrote a wold that had dwarves born beardless. Adulthood came when the dwarf developed enough psionic ability to manifest Sustenance and thus no longer be a burden on the mountain home. Food was scarce, but only children ate.

I remember that campaign, very cool setting. :smallbiggrin:

TheThan
2013-11-02, 04:00 AM
Dwarf children are highly protected by their clans. Outsiders are not allowed access to them at all, not either dwarves from other clans are allowed to see them. therefore nobody but dwarves know what they look like.

Sith_Happens
2013-11-02, 05:11 AM
Dwarf children are actually a fairly common occurrence in the Dragon Age series, but then again, Thedas is the one Tolkien/D&D-esque setting I've seen or heard of where the Dwarves are even a tiny bit different from every other Tolkien/D&D-esque setting's Dwarves (http://tvtropes.org/pmwiki/pmwiki.php/Main/OurDwarvesAreAllTheSame).

Trekkin
2013-11-02, 09:44 AM
I kind of like the idea that dwarves are bearded from infancy.

Heck, now I'm picturing a dwarf blastocyst with a little ring of fuzz around its middle.

hamishspence
2013-11-02, 09:57 AM
I kind of like the idea that dwarves are bearded from infancy.

Like Nale (not a dwarf though)?

http://www.giantitp.com/comics/oots0050.html
http://www.giantitp.com/comics/oots0725.html

endoperez
2013-11-02, 01:10 PM
Why so few images?





http://fc06.deviantart.net/fs71/i/2012/101/7/d/dwarven_fortress_by_shabazik-d4vv5vv.jpg (http://shabazik.deviantart.com/art/Dwarven-Fortress-295386763)

http://th09.deviantart.net/fs71/PRE/i/2010/214/1/5/Dwarven_Maidens_by_Shabazik.jpg (http://shabazik.deviantart.com/art/Dwarven-Maidens-173731091)

http://fc02.deviantart.net/fs70/f/2011/110/c/5/c54c4dac5de60c36fccab095f0f80763-d3ai5yw.jpg (http://silveraxe.deviantart.com/art/Baby-Dwarf-199042232)

Dwarf miniatures by Stonehaven Miniatures

http://www.beastsofwar.com/wp-content/uploads/2012/07/Dwarven-Extras.png

http://www.beastsofwar.com/wp-content/uploads/2012/09/Dwarven-Kids.png

http://cdn.relaxpics.com/show/imgs/6270cc32906d996151297494de8b1e1b.jpg

http://th02.deviantart.net/fs71/PRE/i/2013/059/0/e/gloin_and_young_gimli_by_kriegswaffle-d5wi9kf.png (http://kriegswaffle.deviantart.com/art/Gloin-and-young-Gimli-356930799)

http://fc01.deviantart.net/fs70/f/2013/027/3/5/teenager_gimli_by_3393339-d5svzks.jpg (http://3393339.deviantart.com/art/teenager-gimli-350852572)

http://fc06.deviantart.net/fs70/i/2013/047/e/9/it_was_nori_s_fault_by_kriegswaffle-d5v7svq.png (http://kriegswaffle.deviantart.com/art/It-Was-Nori-s-Fault-354762998?q=gallery%3AKriegswaffle%2F25865498&qo=5)


As you can see, most artists think that dwarven children are beardless. I guess beards just look weird on kids. This is the only image I found with a bearded dwarven kid, and it's in LEGO, so I don't think it counts! :smalltongue:


http://heirsofdurin.files.wordpress.com/2013/07/dwarf-family.jpg

Ravens_cry
2013-11-03, 01:22 AM
Here's (http://0-media-cdn.foolz.us/ffuuka/board/tg/image/1362/74/1362743845227.jpg) a picture of what I suppose are supposed to be dwarves. Note that the kids and their little goatees.

Scow2
2013-11-03, 09:39 AM
Bleh... none of those artists except the Lego Guys get dwarves even remotely close to right. Dwarves Do Not Follow Human Proportion!

Driderman
2013-11-03, 10:49 AM
Generally, my take on dwarves:

Dwarves are much like humans. They simply developed and lived in colder regions that the humans and elves and thusly their ape-like forebears were much hairier than the forebears of the other races, and dwarves still remain so today. Dwarves aren't just bearded, they're overall very hairy and even though their woman as a rule don't grow beards (even though some might manage it due to the race's overall hairyness) their leftover fuzz tends to be more distinct than with other races. Having beards is a cultural thing, but by not extent is being unbearded a mark of shame, although a properly cultivated beard roughly carries the same connotation as wearing an expensive, tailor-made suit.

endoperez
2013-11-03, 11:54 AM
Bleh... none of those artists except the Lego Guys get dwarves even remotely close to right. Dwarves Do Not Follow Human Proportion!

Wha? No way! :smallconfused:

The Tolkien-inspired dwarves were more humanlike in proportions, but especially the first batch of images were all very stocky in build. They are 3 to 4 heads high. Human is about 7 heads high.

http://i66.photobucket.com/albums/h251/Endoperez/Art%20from%20others/dwarf_proportions_zps5871906d.jpg

They're probably not dwarves as you imagine them, but that doesn't mean they're exactly like humans. Could you post an example of a very dwarfy dwarf, for comparison?

Slipperychicken
2013-11-03, 02:29 PM
Wha? No way! :smallconfused:

The Tolkien-inspired dwarves were more humanlike in proportions, but especially the first batch of images were all very stocky in build. They are 3 to 4 heads high. Human is about 7 heads high.



Techically, D&D dwarves are medium size, so they do differ from Middle Earth dwarves in that sense. I've heard this is because they were a player race in D&D before size category was a thing.

Wardog
2013-11-03, 02:44 PM
Dwarven mother with baby:
http://dwarvenglory.files.wordpress.com/2011/10/eap7cp.jpeg

(Also, not a child, but while looking for that image, I found this as well. Too bad large roaches have been nerfed in the current version :smallsmile: ).
http://2.bp.blogspot.com/--6ebcUzM_1A/TXFSAeUJKbI/AAAAAAAAAss/VlyzVQPOFUg/s1600/dwarfRoachShot.jpg

The Oni
2013-11-03, 02:44 PM
Techically, D&D dwarves are medium size, so they do differ from Middle Earth dwarves in that sense. I've heard this is because they were a player race in D&D before size category was a thing.

I always thought Dwarves were medium-sized because their shoulders were roughly as broad as a human's; they'd take up the same amount of space in a horizontal plane, roughly, as a human, therefore they would be in the same size category.

Slipperychicken
2013-11-03, 03:07 PM
I always thought Dwarves were medium-sized because their shoulders were roughly as broad as a human's; they'd take up the same amount of space in a horizontal plane, roughly, as a human, therefore they would be in the same size category.

That does make a lot of sense, actually. If they're medium because of width rather than height, that's consistent with ponies being medium.

Scow2
2013-11-03, 05:19 PM
If Dwarves were to be re-written for 3.5, it would probably be "Small, with Powerful Build".

They're also 1' 6" shorter than a human - just inside the bottom of the "Medium Size" bracket (4'-8')

Ravens_cry
2013-11-03, 05:30 PM
If Dwarves were to be re-written for 3.5, it would probably be "Small, with Powerful Build".

They're also 1' 6" shorter than a human - just inside the bottom of the "Medium Size" bracket (4'-8')
Yeah, but they are as stocky as all heck (http://www.canonfire.com/wiki/index.php?title=File:Dwarf00.jpg).

Scow2
2013-11-04, 06:42 PM
Wha? No way! :smallconfused:

The Tolkien-inspired dwarves were more humanlike in proportions, but especially the first batch of images were all very stocky in build. They are 3 to 4 heads high. Human is about 7 heads high.

http://i66.photobucket.com/albums/h251/Endoperez/Art%20from%20others/dwarf_proportions_zps5871906d.jpg

They're probably not dwarves as you imagine them, but that doesn't mean they're exactly like humans. Could you post an example of a very dwarfy dwarf, for comparison?Wardog beat me to the dwarfliest dwarf, but the one in the PHB isn't too bad. The dwarves in this image you linked are about the right proportion width-wise, but Dwarves actually tend to stand closer to 4-5 heads tall (But only 2 or 3 beards tall), yet are extremely wide. 3-4 heads is Kender/Halfling proportion, and they tend to be much less stocky as well (Like several of the images in your prior post).

Dwarves also aren't as "Round", with squarer/hardlined features on the females and children. Blockier. I guess. They also have longer, gorrila-like arms (As long as a full-sized human's)

No brains
2013-11-04, 09:29 PM
Warning: enclosed is a rant filled with logical fallacies, awful structure, and pseudo-intellectual blathering. This was created largely for entertaining ****-shooting and is not intended to be a definitive work on the subject of small baby people.

The term 'Dwarf' is a pretty nebulous one. It can refer to no less than fifty separate peoples from distinct universes. The development of Dwarves to sexual maturity is dependent upon many factors and as such, there are many different ways they can look and there are yet more reasons for why. Maybe the best way to simplify this argument is to pick one variety to be the Dwarves in question, but barring that, we could possibly reason our way to what any given Dwarven child may look like.

Perhaps the most important distinction to first be made is what produced the Dwarves and how do they re-produce themselves. To start, we should decide whether or not a Dwarf is an evolutionary creature or an intelligently designed one. Should a Dwarf be the latter, then there are infinite possibilities, all of them true in certain worlds, including that Dwarves may never be children. In the case of the former, more rules have to be followed as there are fewer ways a creature can come to exist under the rules of biology as we understand them. Because of the measurable logic required to imagine the form of a non-magic dependent Dwarf, I will pursue this explanation as a way of narrowing down the possibilities.

The easiest place to begin is at the adult Dwarf, but that is still a very difficult place to begin, as not everyone can even agree on what half of them look like. Assume for now that all adult Dwarves have beards, male and female. This scenario makes it possible that all Dwarves at all stages of life have beards. However, if adult female Dwarves do not have beards, then barring some kind of 'beard molt' at puberty, Dwarven children do not have beards. They must develop them through male hormones just as Humans do. Further assumptions into the humanoid functions of Dwarf biology would make it even more likely that beards in female Dwarves is an exceptional trait.

At this point, the answer to what Dwarven children look like is better answered by another question: "What makes Dwarves different from humans?" If Dwarves are simply a genetic offshoot of modern Homo Sapiens, then it is very likely the children look more or less the same. If they branched off earlier than modern man, then there is a greater chance the children will look very different, but still follow most of the rules of ape children, including less hair until maturity. If Humans and Dwarfs were created by distinct heavenly beings, then imagination is the limit.

Indeed, imagination on part of the heavenly being who copied the one people from the previous work is the very deciding factor. In what places did the artist enact license on their work and where did they plagiarize? Some of this can be conjectured from the attitudes and beliefs of the original and copying artists. Did a Dwarf god want to make Humans more like the unchanging hills of the land, or did a Human god want to make Dwarves more like animals in nature? Because an adult Dwarf functions in most cases far more like a Human than a hill, it is reasonable to assume Dwarves were created second with more Earth-themed embellishments by the creator. Decisively, because beards are a trait associated greatly more with Humans than the Earth, it is most likely that they would be copied with very Human-like rules, including standard beardless female adults and children.

In summation: Dwarven children would not have beards, unless there is a very good reason for them to have beards. A reason influenced by survival in a very different environment or an insane and arbitrary artistic mark left by an eccentric god.

LordChaos13
2013-11-06, 07:06 AM
The easiest place to begin is at the adult Dwarf, but that is still a very difficult place to begin, as not everyone can even agree on what half of them look like. Assume for now that all adult Dwarves have beards, male and female. This scenario makes it possible that all Dwarves at all stages of life have beards. However, if adult female Dwarves do not have beards, then barring some kind of 'beard molt' at puberty, Dwarven children do not have beards. They must develop them through male hormones just as Humans do. Further assumptions into the humanoid functions of Dwarf biology would make it even more likely that beards in female Dwarves is an exceptional trait.

First: You name is actually nobrains? I feel like Im insulting you just quoting your post
Second: You make a lot of assumption in the 'females are not bearded' scenario

What if sexual dimorphism is obvious from birth? Genitalia is the only birth dimorphism in humans but it doesnt have to be the ONLY one in a different race.
What if Puberty happens a lot earlier? At the age of 1 when they are just beginning to speak they might develop their beards and such
What if Puberty doesnt happen to Dwarves? It doesnt in a lot of other animals

Segev
2013-11-06, 08:41 AM
And now I'm picturing dwarf children as hairballs a la Cousin It (or his kid, What) who slowly "outgrow" and "molt" parts of their full-body mane until they only have beards (or, if females lack beards, only hair on their heads).


Though I think my favorite explanation is still "dwarf children are hairless, and men grow beards on their faces while women grow them on their heads. Dwarf males thus appear 'bald' to other races."

No brains
2013-11-06, 12:52 PM
First: You name is actually nobrains? I feel like Im insulting you just quoting your post
Second: You make a lot of assumption in the 'females are not bearded' scenario

What if sexual dimorphism is obvious from birth? Genitalia is the only birth dimorphism in humans but it doesnt have to be the ONLY one in a different race.
What if Puberty happens a lot earlier? At the age of 1 when they are just beginning to speak they might develop their beards and such
What if Puberty doesnt happen to Dwarves? It doesnt in a lot of other animals

I was going from the perspective that Dwarves are a recent humanoid offshoot that would follow most of the same rules as other similar animals. Hair patterns and puberty are fairly consistent* among great apes. As far as I know, humans are the only ones to have beards, so there must be some pretty stringent guidelines on the 'beardability' of an animal. It would be happy to see an ape with a Z Z Top beard though.

As for my name, I go from the perspective that I'm an idiot who may occasionally say smart things. It's sort of a Socrates idea. If I can collect a bunch of quotes from people saying how something I said was especially smart, then 'No brains' just becomes my ID pattern and I can really grow past the name. I'm also less tempting to Illithids.

*As I understand. What seems to separate humans from other apes is a protracted childhood, so a near humanoid should follow similar rules. It would be fun to learn more.

hamishspence
2013-11-06, 01:00 PM
I was going from the perspective that Dwarves are a recent humanoid offshoot that would follow most of the same rules as other similar animals. Hair patterns and puberty are fairly consistent* among great apes. As far as I know, humans are the only ones to have beards, so there must be some pretty stringent guidelines on the 'beardability' of an animal. It would be happy to see an ape with a Z Z Top beard though.

Some monkey species have moustaches, or beards, on both genders:

http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Emperor_Tamarin

endoperez
2013-11-06, 02:01 PM
Wardog beat me to the dwarfliest dwarf, but the one in the PHB isn't too bad. The dwarves in this image you linked are about the right proportion width-wise, but Dwarves actually tend to stand closer to 4-5 heads tall (But only 2 or 3 beards tall), yet are extremely wide. 3-4 heads is Kender/Halfling proportion, and they tend to be much less stocky as well (Like several of the images in your prior post).

Dwarves also aren't as "Round", with squarer/hardlined features on the females and children. Blockier. I guess. They also have longer, gorrila-like arms (As long as a full-sized human's)

Oh, okay. I don't see that big of a difference between what Wardog posted, and these ones. The main difference is the width, really.

Roundedness is due to these being females and kids. Squarer and hardlined features are a male thing, roundedness is how you're taught to draw women and kids.

http://i108.photobucket.com/albums/n24/kallen_05/male_female_face_tut.jpg

Scow2
2013-11-06, 02:27 PM
Oh, okay. I don't see that big of a difference between what Wardog posted, and these ones. The main difference is the width, really.Which is the major factor in dwarves. Dwarves are WIDE.


Roundedness is due to these being females and kids. Squarer and hardlined features are a male thing, roundedness is how you're taught to draw women and kids.But not rounder to that extent.

endoperez
2013-11-06, 04:18 PM
Which is the major factor in dwarves. Dwarves are WIDE.

But not rounder to that extent.

I think dwarves don't have to be any wider than in the pictures I posted, and I think dwarven women and kids should have rounded faces.

It comes down to one's own opinion. I thought these dwarves were good examples of young and female dwarves, and so did the artists, because they drew them this way.

Lord Vukodlak
2013-11-08, 05:58 PM
This kinda thing will probably come up in my next campaign as the entire party are Dwarves.

Averis Vol
2013-11-08, 10:23 PM
Fili and Kili are the youngest of the dwarven group in the hobbit, so I kind of assume they're a good base for dwarven youth.

http://scienceblogs.com/principles/files/2012/11/Fili_Kili_door.jpg

LordChaos13
2013-11-08, 10:31 PM
Young being relative, considering the timeline of them leaving their mines cause of OMGDWAGON!
They came off as young-adultish like early-mid 20s

Averis Vol
2013-11-08, 11:28 PM
Young being relative, considering the timeline of them leaving their mines cause of OMGDWAGON!
They came off as young-adultish like early-mid 20s

Considering how long dwarves live, I think 20ish can be considered young.

LordChaos13
2013-11-08, 11:30 PM
I meant relative to humans

Averis Vol
2013-11-09, 12:12 AM
I meant relative to humans

well, yea. I assumed we were talking relative to dwarves though. Humans don't really have a place in this argument.

GoblinArchmage
2013-11-09, 12:25 AM
Personally I think dwarven boys all have five o'clock shadows until puberty. then their real beard comes in and the dwarves celebrate it as the boy finally becoming a man.

The traditional Beard Mitzvah, a very special occasion.

LordChaos13
2013-11-09, 01:39 PM
well, yea. I assumed we were talking relative to dwarves though. Humans don't really have a place in this argument.

Dwarves are anything from Human lifetimes to several hundred years
Using the human reference for ages gives across the idea of maturity more than giving a conversion table so you can work out the human age yourself

But to put it a different way:
The two act like young-adults, in a similar way that humans of the age 20-25 act as young adults

Slipperychicken
2013-11-09, 03:38 PM
Dwarves are anything from Human lifetimes to several hundred years
Using the human reference for ages gives across the idea of maturity more than giving a conversion table so you can work out the human age yourself

But to put it a different way:
The two act like young-adults, in a similar way that humans of the age 20-25 act as young adults

Ehh. If a setting puts in such a difference between races (i.e. Elves live for hundreds of years), but then doesn't do anything with it, it might as well not exist.