In both Norse mythology and the Dragon Age universe, dwarven societies are deeply traditional and value merit. The dwarves of Dragon Age, residing in the grand Thaigs of the underground city of Orzammar, operate on a caste system influenced by lineage and occupation, somewhat similar to the clan-based structure seen in Norse mythology. However, an individual’s standing can be improved through personal achievement, aligning with the Norse dwarves’ value of skill in determining status.
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Stone Affinity: Deep Bonds with the Earth
The Dragon Age dwarves’ relationship with the stone is a spiritual and almost sentient connection, akin to the Norse dwarves’ belief in stone as an extension of their being. The Stone, a deity-like figure for Dragon Age dwarves, is a source of spiritual guidance and also represents the physical earth they mine and shape. This echoes the Norse dwarves’ symbiotic relationship with stone, born from Ymir’s body and understanding its “silent language”.
Ancestry: Origin and Myth
Dragon Age dwarves trace their ancestry back to the legendary Stone, paralleling the Norse dwarves’ birth from Ymir’s body. While Dragon Age dwarves’ origin is less macabre, both mythologies present the dwarves as an inherent part of the earth, embodying a deep connection with the material world and the cycle of life, death, and rebirth.
Craftsmanship: Masters of Creation
Just as Norse dwarves are famed for their extraordinary crafts, the Dragon Age dwarves are expert smiths and renowned across Thedas for their craftsmanship. Their skill in crafting intricate lyrium-infused items matches the Norse dwarves’ prowess in creating powerful artifacts like Mjölnir or Draupnir. Both societies utilize their deep understanding of their material to create objects of significant power and beauty.
In essence, the dwarves of the Dragon Age universe seem to be strongly influenced by their Norse counterparts, mirroring several key aspects such as societal structure, relationship with stone, ancestry, and craftsmanship. The narratives of both mythologies convey the dwarves’ profound connection to the earth and their extraordinary crafting abilities, showing how ancient myths continue to inspire and shape modern fantasy.