Dragons of Genovia
Elves are an ancient and powerful people, whose years are long and whose passions run deep. They form tight communities in hidden forests but mingle freely with other humanoids, always welcome yet never at home. Elves favor things of natural and simple beauty and are famed for their poetry, dance, song, lore, and magical arts. When danger threatens their woodland homes, however, they reveal a stern martial side, demonstrating skill with sword, bow, and battle strategy.
Taking the Long View
Elves are more often amused than excited, and more likely to be curious than greedy. With such a long life span, they keep a broad perspective on events, remaining aloof and unfazed by petty happenstance. When pursuing a goal, however, whether adventuring on a mission or learning a new skill or art, elves can be focused and relentless. They are slow to make friends and enemies, and even slower to forget them. They reply to petty insults with disdain and to serious insults with vengeance.
Slender and Graceful
Elves are about the same height as humans, though they vary more widely. They range from under 5 feet tall to just over 6 feet, but they are slender, weighing only 100 to 145 pounds. Males are about as tall as and only marginally heavier than females. Elves tend to be pale-skinned and dark-haired, with deep-green eyes. They have no facial or body hair. With their unearthly grace and fine features, elves appear hauntingly beautiful to humans and members of many other races. They prefer simple, comfortable clothes, especially in pastel blues and greens, and they enjoy simple yet elegant jewelry. An elf reaches adulthood at about 110 years of age and can live to be more than 700 years old.
Proud but not Cold
Elves have high expectations and do not hide that fact. They consider humans rather unrefined, halflings a bit staid, gnomes somewhat trivial, and dwarves not at all fun. They look on half-elves with some degree of pity, and they regard half-orcs with unrelenting suspicion. While they can be haughty, elves are generally pleasant and gracious even to those who fall short of their standards (a category that encompasses just about everybody who’s not an elf).
Hidden Woodland Realms
Most elves dwell in forest settlements, each numbering less than two hundred souls. Their well-hidden villages are built among and blend into the trees, doing little harm to the forest. Elveshunt game, gather food, and grow vegetables, and their skill and magic allow them to support themselves without the need for clearing and plowing land. They are talented artisans, crafting finely worked clothes and art objects. Their contact with outsiders is usually limited, though a few elves make a good living by trading crafted items for metals (which they have no interest in mining).
Elves encountered outside their own lands are commonly traveling minstrels, favored artists, or wandering sages. Human nobles compete for the services of elf instructors to teach swordplay to their children.