Courtship and love is varied among the races of Nederantansie. By most races it is quite the same but a bit different from the rest. Marriage is also common among most races, but sometimes regarded as a duty to one's family. This is a description about courtship and love about the four races from the lands of Veranor.
Among the humans, marriage is both a celebration of tradition and a practical decision. Through a favorable marriage, one can make valuable connections, improve one's social standing, and secure financial stability for oneself and one's family. Especially among the nobility. Love is not necessary for a successful marriage but is nonetheless desirable, as it makes the union stronger. Nobles and knights are also only allowed to court noblewomen. If a knight falls in love with a peasantgirl, than it is viewed as a disgrace and vice versa. Same goes to noblewoman with a peasant. It is even better if the Noblewoman is of higher descent than the knight, because that brings more power and a change to get a higher noble rank. Divorce is unthinkable among the nobility, because it could break a union between noble families apart. Many petty wars has started only because of a noblewoman wants to divorce from her abusive husband.
Human pregmancies takes nine months.
Because elves are physically immortal, they don't really bother with love in their early century of life. But they will start to find love just as important as living their life, because, according to the elves, love is eventually all what life is about. When elves bond with each other, they are also bonded for life. Standing together in dire needs. And like humans, marriage make valuable connections. However, if the partner died suddenly (like during a battle or caused by an accident for example), then it is common that the other partner would die aswell out of grief. If he/she didn't die out of sorrow, then he/she would never have partner again for many years out of respect for their former partner. Divorce is taboo among elves, because they believe that there will be never a reason to divorce from an elf.
Elven pregmancies takes nine years.
One important thing for dwarves is to grow a beard if he wants to be attractive to the dwarf ladies. Which is also one of the reasons why all male dwarves wear beards. The bigger the beard, the better the change to meet a dwarf lady. A shaven male dwarf is not only unattractive, but also shunned upon by the rest of the dwarven community. Both a male and female dwarf usually meet each other in a Mead House. While drinking some alcoholic drinks, they watch each other which one would make the first move. Suprisingly, it is usually the female. When a dwarf couple is married, the female would start to grow a beard aswell because of traditions, although some dwarven females remain to keep a shaven face but that is not frowned upon.
Dwarven pregmancies takes two years.
Gnome communities are small, so their life partners are usually someone they have known for many years, like a childhood friend. But gnomes don't think about love or courtship until they have reached their hundredth birthday. Marriage among the gnomes are simple ceremonies, that usually takes place on a clear night sky. At a Meeting Stone, the engaged couple will swear an oath to be loyal to each other for an eternity and proceed their first kiss while being applauded by their relatives and friends whom are attending at the ceremony. When a gnome couple marries, they will go on a honeymoon by travelling around lands for a decade. Like elves, gnome partners are for life. When they both reach an age around 400 years, while knowing that their end is near, they will travel together around for one final time, untill they die together.
Gnome pregmancies takes 1.5 years.
1. Relationships between two different races exist. But it's usually frowned upon and not a common sight. You'll risk being disownd by your family even for doing so.
2. Relationships between two of the same gender exist aswell. But that's more in secrecy to avoid controversies.
The characters on this picture from above to below and left to right are:
A human knight courting a female noblewoman.
An Elf maid kissing a male dwarf on the forehead.
And two lovey-doovey gnomes.