Dongun Hold

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Dongun Hold

Small town
95% dwarves, 3% humans, 2% other
Source: The Inner Sea World Guide, pg(s). 112 (1E)
Impossible Lands, pg(s). 90 (2E)

The dwarven Sky Citadel of Dongun Hold, located in the Mana Wastes of southeastern Garund, is part of the magic-bereft Grand Duchy of Alkenstar. While the nation as a whole has a primarily human population, Dongun Hold is almost exclusively inhabited by dwarves.

The ancient forge within Dongun Hold is surrounded by gargantuan dwarven statues, seemingly gazing at the forge within. A flaming inverted hammer is engraved into the handle of every item forged in Dongun Hold to show its provenance.2


Dongun Hold was the second Sky Citadel established by the dwarves (after Koldukar) following the completion of the Quest for Sky. Connected to Koldukar via a tunnel in the upper reaches of Nar-Voth, Dongun Hold was built as part of an alliance with Osirion, and envisioned as the first far-flung outpost of Tar Taargadth. Arnhild Arunak, one of the most trusted generals of High King Taargick, was assigned to command it.3

Before the Mana Wastes came into existence, the area around Dongun Hold was renowned for its natural beauty. The pharaohs of Osirion let the dwarves rule their land in peace, as did the petty warlords who succeeded them after Osirion's decline, but this changed with the emergence of the two powerful wizards, Nex and Geb.4

During the ongoing war between Nex and Geb, control of Dongun Hold changed between both nations. Eventually, the dwarven inhabitants used strange explosives and divine magic to seal off their fortress and prevent it from being taken again, but also laid waste to the region surrounding it. This might have resulted in the first area of dead magic in the area, as the powerful dwarven magic interacted strangely with the arcane powers employed by both Nex and Geb. The dwarves took residence in a deep, magic-dead Darklands vault, where they eventually perfected the invention of firearms. Later, the ruins of the collapsed dwarven structures became a settlement for human scavengers and renegades from both nations.56

In 4588 AR, Ancil Alkenstar discovered the dwarves and made a bargain with them to provide the refugees with firearms, allowing them to defend themselves from the battles between Geb and Nex. Dongun Hold was thus opened to the outside world.67


Dongun Hold is currently ruled by High King Anong Arunak, who has led it to unprecedented prosperity. However, her rule is not without enemies: the Keepers of the Skyflame oppose the development of firearms and the very idea of trading with Alkenstar and Nex;, while the Goldhand Lodge often tries to circumvent the king's restrictions in the name of profit, resulting in the arrest of several of their agents for smuggling.89


Many of the dwarves of Dongun Hold venerate Angradd and believe that the Forge-Fire encourages them to create ever more powerful firearms to show their piety and strength.10


For almost 1,000 years, the dwarves of Dongun Hold have mined the rich mineral deposits of the Shattered Range, providing magnetite, gold, and other ores for trade and use in Alkenstar City's many factories. However, the vast rivers of quartz and other crystals comprise most of the dwarves' wealth, since they export much of it east to Vudra thanks to lucrative trade agreements with Nex.11 This makes Dongun Hold the region's hub of commerce, as well as a gathering point for explorers on the forefront of technological development.12

The Hold is connected to the main city and Cloudreaver Keep via the impressive Bridge of the Gods.11


For additional as-yet unincorporated sources about this subject, see the Meta page.

  1. Population growth between the publications of The Inner Sea World Guide (1,900) and Impossible Lands
  2. Logan Bonner, et al. “Forges of Invention” in People of the Wastes, 14. Paizo Inc., 2017
  3. Amirali Attar Olyaee, et al. Taargick” in Legends, 103. Paizo Inc., 2020
  4. Erik Mona, et al. Impossible Lands” in World Guide, 79. Paizo Inc., 2019
  5. James Jacobs, et al. The Inner Sea World Guide, 111. Paizo Inc., 2011
  6. 6.0 6.1 Erik Mona, et al. Impossible Lands” in World Guide, 75. Paizo Inc., 2019
  7. Saif Ansari, et al. Dwarves” in Heroes from the Fringe, 7. Paizo Inc., 2018
  8. Amirali Attar Olyaee, et al. Anong Arunak” in Legends, 14. Paizo Inc., 2020
  9. Amirali Attar Olyaee, et al. Anong Arunak” in Legends, 15. Paizo Inc., 2020
  10. Logan Bonner, et al. “Gods of Innovation” in People of the Wastes, 26. Paizo Inc., 2017
  11. 11.0 11.1 James Jacobs, et al. The Inner Sea World Guide, 112. Paizo Inc., 2011
  12. David Eitelbach, et al. “The Five Kings Mountains” in Dwarves of Golarion, 19. Paizo Inc., 2009