- -Fomorous Hugues
The Gnomes are perplexing individuals who use their gifts of knowledge in the medicine and magic field to benefit those they ally with. However, if you aren't one of these select few, you will be none the wiser as they seldom share their knowledge with outsiders. Even in their own society they are divided into three caste: Templars, that set and enforce the laws; Scholars, who venture for knowledge; and Praetorians, the Gnomes fighting force known throughout Amalur.
Political power in the Gnomes society is split between the three cast; Templars, Scholars and Praetorians all of which take part to govern the society. There was a fourth caste, called the Auspices. They were divine scholars, similar to priest of other societies, however, they soon became a part of history as their sacred monastery was attacked and destroyed. Templars, focus on diplomacy, politics, and the planning of what the society and those within it should do. They set the agenda which in turn results in long term accomplishments like the creation of the Well of Souls. The Praetorians, are the guards of the Gnomes society. They bring breakers of laws to be justified by the law upheld by the Templars and protect the Gnomes culture and society. Scholars, are those who practice philosophy, while collecting and recording knowledge of Amalur's past, present and future for a desire to help change the world for the better.
The Gnomes culture revolves around solving problems that arise and achieving goals in a rational manner, despite living in times were magic is prominent and used widely among other cultures for these things. Because of this, they have earned a reputation to be practical and logical thinkers. However, within the community and not known to "outsiders" the Templars give the Scholars some leeway when working out problems in a different and perhaps unorthodox manner to come up with solutions, even if it might mean breaking a few rules here and there. Most of the Gnomes society and culture was very spread apart in small villages or sects within allied cities until the Age of Arcana, when the Templars decided to found the city of Adessa. This city would serve as a center of knowledge and learning for all of Amalur to take advantage of. Upon the completion of Adessa, the Gnomes received the visability and recognition they desired, however, the destruction of Adessa was just the start of the Age of Ruin. Since then, it's been a spiral into a dark era that would undo the changes the Gnomes culture had given the world.
Because they are so gifted in the process of creating certain things the Gnomes society usually gives away what it will sell later. Sort of like a trial run, or maybe a sample. Since they have such strong allegiances with other races and their holds, they have a large variety of people to trade with. They also want to keep their relationships with those individuals flourishing and good so they cherish the reputation they have built for themselves and anything to ruin it, like the flaunting of wealth to others, won't be tolerated.
While magic is used and does play a role in the Gnomes culture, it isn't "worshiped" like it is in other cultures. They aren't as effective at using it as the more magically inclined elves either, but they are still very much effective in it's use. They use it to study things, solve problems and find answers. Even with all this going on, they still aren't sure of what the source for magic is, why it's here or what all it can do.
There are two religious extremist in the Gnomes society, those who believe and those who don't. For those who do believe, they see the world as a divine manifestation and everything that's happening within it is from the deities. The deities that are most commonly worshiped in the Gnomes society are Mitharu, Lord of Order, and Lyria, Goddess of Magic. But, some people still seek answers in other places, like the stars, a connection between fate and magic or the gods of sun and moon; Helius and Lunala. All forms of religious worship, all left up to the individual. However, where their are believers, there are nonbelievers. The nonbelievers shun religion and those connected with it stating "divine influence are explainable manifestations of magical energy." These individuals believe that the rational study of magic and it's connection to the divine is what will give them the answers they desire, those that can't be answered.