Gnomes were also among the few races to remain independent under The Great Dominion. This was due mostly to their skill at sailing and trade. As long as gnomish history stretches back, their race has felt at home on the waves. Building few permanent settlements, most gnomes have always spent most of their lives on their vessels. What shorebound towns the race did construct were usually dedicated to trade.
Throughout history, gnomes have avoid outright conflict with the other races. In every war, these tiny merchants have maintained open trade with both sides of the conflict. This outlook on the world continued, even under the human Dominion, where the gnomish trade guilds kept goods flowing between the human kingdoms.
Following the collapse, the trade guilds managed to keep the former kingdom of Murai intact, even after most of its territory was lost to the sea and the human inhabitants abandoned the old kingdom. This center of trade has existed much as it has for the past centuries, however, an increase in smuggling, piracy, and thievery has led to the stereotyping of many gnomes as dangerous thieves willing to do anything for the right amount of gold.