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Karak Norn, which means "Barren Earth Hold" in Khazalid, is a Dwarf hold built on a forested and valley-ringed mountain amongst the Grey Mountains.[1][2][3] It is believed to be the first hold to be ruled by a queen.[4]


Of all the areas settled by the Dwarfs, the Grey Mountains are the poorest in minerals. The scant deposits of ores and gems are made harder to mine by the treacherous and unstable bedrock. The Dwarfs who settled the Grey Mountains were drawn by tall tales of undiscovered riches, and they cling to the hope of a spectacular find with typical Dwarf stubbornness. However, there has been a trend in recent generations for younger Dwarfs to leave the Grey Mountains to seek their fortune elsewhere; the mood among those who remain is increasingly sombre and dour.[3a][3b]

The largest hold in the Grey Mountains is Karak Norn (“Barren Earth Hold”). Populated by displaced clans from the fallen hold of Mount Silverspear and the watchtowers of Mad Dog Pass, Karak Norn sits on the only sizeable deposits of metal and semiprecious stones in the Grey Mountains. The Dwarfhold is strategically placed with its upper level visible on a plateau high above the Loren Forest. This enables the Dwarfs to monitor the activities of the Wood Elves of Loren, albeit from a considerable distance. While the Elves haven’t been a threat for over 4,000 years, and the grudge against the Elves was officially settled with the taking of the Phoenix Crown, the Dwarfs see no harm in vigilance.[3b]

Ruled by King Brokk Ironpick the Grim and Queen Thurma of the Grintzagaz clan, Karak Norn is the smallest of the principal Dwarfholds outside the World’s Edge Mountains, but it still has a strong influence over the surrounding Dwarf settlements. The Grey Mountain Dwarfs enjoy a relatively peaceful co-existence with the Bretonnians to the west and a very uneasy truce with the Wood Elves of Athel-Loren. They side with the Empire in times of war with Bretonnia, and have been known to close all major passes in the southern Grey Mountains, including the well-travelled Montdidier Pass that transverses the southern end of the range, near the Vaults. Karak Norn is defended by large flame cannons and powerful bolt throwers. Although clearly designed with the Wood Elves of Loren in mind, the Dwarf defences are a formidable deterrent to any who might seek to invade their realm.[3b]


  • 1 Warhammer Armies: Dwarfs (6th Edition revised)
    • 1a pg. 23
  • 2 Warhammer Armies: Dwarfs (8th Edition)
    • 2a pg. 25
  • 3 Warhammer RPG 2nd Edition: Stone & Steel
    • 3a pg. 36
    • 3b pg. 37
  • 4 The Doom of Dragonback, The Fall of Ekrund
    • 4a pg. 411

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