[RPG] the relationship between dwarves and elves in the Forgotten Realms


It is common knowledge that elves and dwarves don't like each other. But I'm curious if there were historical events which forged their views on each other in the lore of Forgotten Realms, or any other reasoning behind their relationship.

Best Answer

The answer by @That_Knight_Guy is complete indeed, nonetheless you may find more details in other source books.

In Races of Faerun (3rd ed) each subrace is deeply described, including also the relations with other races. For example (pag 14) regarding Gold Dwarves

Gold dwarves regard elves and half-elves with suspicion after generations spent battling their deep- dwelling cousins.

or about Shield Dwarves (pag 20)

Despite centuries of squabbling with elves and half-elves, shield dwarves have always managed to put aside their differences with the Tel-quessir in the face of outside threats.

It seems that this distrust of elves is due to the past (and present) conflicts between the majority of the Dwarf subraces and drows: the description of Urdunnir subrace (the closest ones to Nature and druidish culture) says (pag 22)

They are deeply suspicious of elves and half-elves thanks to centuries of dealing with their dark cousins.

On the other hand, I did not find so many details about the relation within Elves and Dwarves in the chapter devoted to Elves (pagg 26-47): just a short note about Wood Elves

Wood elves have a long history of cooperation with the shield dwarves, whose realm of Ammarindar stood alongside their own realm of Eaerlann for many centuries in the vale of the Delimbiyr River. By extension, they look favorably on most other dwarves, too.

Although this distrust, elves and dwarves formed some alliances for fighting orcs and goblins. For example, from Grand History of the Realms (pag 21)

–6400 DR The elves meet the dwarves of Sarphil on the battlefields of the Vast and forge a tenuous alliance since the elves save the dwarves from death at the orcs’ hands.

The history of the Severed Hand is about an alliance between the elves of the Hand of the Seldarine and the Dwarves of the Dorn's Deep: this alliance ended in a slaughter, orchestrated (again) by drows.

In conclusion, it seems to me that the main reason behind the turmoiled relation among Dwarves and Elves find its explanation in the drows' actions, past and present.