Humans are widely considered the most boring part of the Player’s Handbook. That’s… not really a fair assessment. They may have the most basic statline in Dungeons & Dragons 5th Edition, but that doesn’t make their history any worse. Humans come in a variety of cultures, ethnicities, and places. They are extremely adaptable, and their natural charisma make them valuable allies to any race. But why can’t you just place “Bob” onto your name column and call it a day? Well, you could, but our DND Human Names Guide will explain why that might not be the best idea.
DND Human Names 5E Guide
5E’s humans have quite literally 9 different ethnicities. Humans can hail from a wide range of different places, and even have hints of different races peppered in their blood. With how many options you have, it’s worth taking a look at your options and thinking about how that may change your Human. At the very worst, you’ll have a better idea about what your background will be like!
Human Culture and Naming Conventions in 5E
Humans, generally, are governed by two codes; first, ambition. Humans wish to be the best in a huge variety of skills and themes. They live in the present, and champion causes to push their goals as hard as possible. Second, they’re building to last. Where other races pass traditions through word of mouth, humans have build monuments and libraries, temples and outcroppings, to attempt to match the Elves’ immortality. They may not live long, but they ensure their lives will be remembered forever.
It is also important to remember that in most settings, humans are the largest and most malleable of species. There are often countless human cultures in a specific game compared to other races who are treated as largely homogenous. That means the naming conventions can vary dramatically not only from one setting to another, but also from one region or culture to another within the same setting.
Examples of DND Human Names in Faerun
Humans have nine widely recognizable ethnicities, though over a dozen more are found throughout the Forgotten Realms. It’s impossible to say “general human names,” since there’s so many different cultures scattered along the land. While no race can have a definite “this culture rules all,” humans are the paragons of this thought.
Southwestern Faerun natives, these humans are dark-skinned and smaller than typical size. Their surnames are based on older ancestral names.
These humans live around the inner sea, and are a dominant force in central Faerun. They’re tawny-skinned and slender, with dark hair. Their surnames are based off of old jobs and elements of nature.
Damarans are northwest of Faerun, and have moderately large builds. Their hair is pretty dark, and have somewhat light skin. Surnames are harsh and almost Russian/Norwegian; “Bersk, Nemetsk, and Starag” are viable, common names.
Tall, fair-skinned folk from northwest faerun. Their eyes are brutally blue, and their hair varies from raven-black to much lighter, depending on how extremely northern they get. Their surnames are almost a mix between elven and dwarven; “Brightwood, Lackman, Windrivver.”
Natives of eastern and southeastern Inner Sea, Mulan are tall, slim, and amber-skinned. Their hair is dark, but nobles and most other Mulan shave their heads. Their surnames are rather complex and combine names; “Ankhalab, Hahpet, Uuthrakt.”
East of the Inner Sea, and usually connected with Mulan, they’re the dwarves of humans; not necessarily tiny, but short and well-built. Their skin is dusky, and their eyes and hair are both dark. Their surnames are long and full of depth, pulled from ancestral names; “Chergoba, Murthyethara, Stayanoga.”
The Asian equivalent, the Shou are the strongest element of Kara-Tur, the eastern portion of Faerun. They’re yellowish-bronze in hue, with dark hair and eyes. Their surnames are usually presented before their given name, and are short, one-syllable bursts; “Kao, Mei, Tan.”
Tethyrians are more connected to the western edge of the Sword Coast. They’re medium build, and their skin starts dusky and grows fair the farther north they go. They have the most varied hair and eye color, and use Chondathan names.
Finally, in the southern shore of the Inner Sea are the Turami people. They are tall and muscular, with dark mahogany skin, with dark hair, and eyes. Their surnames are almost Italian-inspired; “Agosto, Domine, Marivaldi, Ramondo.”
Concluding our DND Human Names Guide
Whew! That’s all for Humans. Keep in mind that these conventions are specifically designed for Forgotten Realms setting. Names are different when it comes to other official settings like Eberron, or particularly for Critical Role’s Exandria setting. Make sure you know how to roll for your stats, and how to get starting gold in 5E.
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