Beards are highly valued by the Dwarves. Though it seems to be rare, female Dwarves are capable of growing beards as well -- a trait considered beautiful by the race.
The Earthen were created by the Titans to continue to shape Azeroth even after the Titans had left the world. They were intended to shape the caverns and underground of the world, and were designed specifically for that task by the Vanir Titans.
The Old Gods inflicted many of the Earthen with the Curse of Flesh, which caused them to mutate into the monstrous Troggs. The Titans found the Troggs to be ugly and savage, and thus sealed them away. Most Troggs were locked beneath the city of Uldaman. Displeased, the Titans modified the Earthen. When the Curse of Flesh affected the second series of Earthen, they transformed into Dwarves. Although unhappy, the Titans saw that the Dwarves retained their cognitive abilities and would be able to perform their tasks as set before them. Still, the Titans continued to modify the Earthen.
These Dwarves and Earthen were asked to take part in the War of the Ancients, which they did until the Sundering ripped apart the world of Azeroth, the Earthen and the Dwarves felt the incredibly agony of the earth. They retreated to the Titan cities from which they had been created and hibernated for eight thousand years.
At the end of the eight thousand years, they awoke and discovered that they had all -- with the exception of those Earthen created in the Forge of Wills -- been affected by the Curse of Flesh. They had lost much of their command over the earth, and their skin was smooth and soft.
Aside from their participation in the War of the Ancients, neither the Dwarves or the Earthen had much to do with other races prior to their hibernation. The Ironforge Dwarves, however, held a thirst for exploration. Roughly 1,800 years prior to the First War they encountered the Humans and the High Elves, as both races were already allies. The humans taught their language to the Dwarves and introduced them to the faith of the Holy Light. It seems that humans coined the term "dwarf" for the race, although the Kaldorei equivalent had already been used as a derogatory term for the Earthen during the War of the Ancient.
Very few humans opposed this new alliance, although the racist and xenophobic Lord Garithos did and was one of the most vocal about this. He frequently referred to the dwarves as freaks and idiots.
A mere 200 years ago, the Dwarves first encountered the Gnomes. Sharing an interest in technology, the two races bonded closely and have frequently been treated as one faction instead of two ever since. Initially, the Gnomes even allowed the Dwarves to represent them to the rest of the Alliance. The Dwarves did permit the Gnomes construct their city of Gnomeregan in Khaz Modan and even helped to construct it.
War of the Three HammersEdit
The Ironforge Dwarves living within Ironforge were initially all part of the Ironforge Clan. Eventually, they divided into three clans -- the [[Bronzebeard Clan], the Wildhammer Clan, and the Dark Iron Clan. Upon the death of Modimus Anvilmar, fighting began over who the new ruler of Ironforge might be. The civil war ended quickly, with the Bronzebeard Dwarves quickly becoming the victors.
The bitter Dark Iron Dwarves soon launched an attack upon both rival clans, attacking the Wildhammer Dwarves in their home of Grim Batol. The Bronzebeard Dwarves defeated the Dark Iron invasion and retaliated by sending an army towards the Dark Iron home of Thaurissan. In the battle at Grim Batol, however, the queen of the Dark Irons Modgud fell while using terrible dark magic. Her soldiers quit the field and fled, and the Wildhammer's pursued them until they perceived they were no longer a threat. The queen's magic, however, left Grim Batol a dangerous, haunted place to be so the Wildhammers traveled north and built Aerie Peak in the Hinterlands as their new home. The retreating Dark Irons were then slain by the advancing Bronzebeard army.
When the Bronzebeard's reached Blackrock Mountain, they discovered the Dark Irons had accidentally summoned Ragnaros the Firelord who devastated the Redridge Mountains and enslaved the Dark Iron Dwarves. The Bronzebeard Dwarves beheld this and fled back to Ironforge. Thus, the Dark Irons were thoroughly defeated in the War of the Three Hammers.
Second and Third WarsEdit
During the Second War, the Dwarves and Gnomes participated in the Alliance of Lordaeron against the Horde when the savage green-skinned race began to devastate their lands as well. While the High Elves and Gilneas withdrew from the Alliance, the Dwarves remained loyal through the Third War. The Gnomes did as well, though their home was being invaded by Troggs and they were unable to assist. In the aftermath of the Third War, the Dwarves allowed the Gnomeregan Exiles to establish Tinker Town in Ironforge until they could reclaim their home city.
The Explorer's LeagueEdit
The Dwarves began to rediscover their origins shortly after traveling to Kalimdor in the Third War. The Explorer's League was founded to excavate Titan ruins and delve deeper into the mysterious origins of the race. Brann Bronzebeard quickly became the most successful member of the League. Although other races of the Alliance do not share the Dwarven fascination, they support the Dwarves in their endeavor to reclaim their history. The Explorer's League has also uncovered much history for other races, discovering the Vrykul in Northrend and the Mechagnomes from which humans and gnomes seem to have evolved. The Explorer's League has also allowed the Dwarves to rediscover their ancient Stoneform ability.
The Burning CrusadeEdit
The Dwarves have remained steadfast members of the Alliance despite their own motivations in archaeology. They can be found spread across Azeroth and the Outlands aiding in the Alliance's goals and uncovering archaeological discoveries. The Bronzebeard Dwarves are the most active in the Alliance, but the Wildhammer Dwarves have also proven themselves dependable.
An expedition to Grim Batol uncovered that not all of the Dark Iron dwarves fled the place. Those that remained were mutated by the dark magic into lizard-like Dwarves called the Skardyn.
Wrath of the Lich KingEdit
While in Northrend, the Alliance rediscovered two more subraces of Dwarves. The Frostborn, who allied themselves with the Alliance quite readily though they are hesitant to leave their home of Frosthold and the Iron Dwarves who remain loyal to Loken and the Old God Yogg-Saron.
With the world in upheaval, King Magni Bronzebeard attempted to use Titan magic to aid in Azeroth's survival. Unhappily, he was transformed into a massive diamond by this attempt. This threw Ironforge into chaos, something that Magni's daughter was quick to take advantage of. She swept into the city with her Dark Iron forces and began to rule it with an iron fist. She was quickly deposed but it had become evident that the three clans needed to unite once more. As such, the Council of Three Hammers was formed with a representative for each clan of Ironforge Dwarves.
- The Earthen, while not truly considered Dwarves, do still remain in the ancient ruins of Titan cities. They are Dwarven in appearance, although made completely of stone.
- The Frostborn, also known as "Frost Dwarves", have blue skin and are clearly adapted for life in the freezing Northrend. They are quick to ally themselves with other Dwarves.
- Iron Dwarves seem to have evolved, barely, from Earthen made from iron by Loken, they are loyal still to their creator and to Yogg-Saron.
- Ironforge Dwarves were once a united race of dwarves fully transformed by the Curse of Flesh. They have since split.
- Bronzebeard Dwarves are the most populous race of Dwarves, they are highly interested in exploration and archaology.
- Wildhammer Dwarves have a deep connection to nature, especially to the Griffins they raise in Aerie Peak.
- Dark Iron Dwarves have long been the enemies of other Dwarves, but many have recently reunited with the rest of their race.
- Skardyn are reptillian mutations of Dark Iron Dwarves caused by too much exposure to dark magic over a long period of time.
Dwarves are a race that appears in first in Warcraft II: Tides of Darkness and continue to appear throughout the rest of the Warcraft games.