The Darkness Below
The stuff of nightmares to many residents of Faerun, the drow are a race of elves that live in the Underdark. The vast majority are evil, though some neutral or even good individuals exist, overcoming not only their dark past but the prejudices of the surface races.
A ruthless matriarchal society, the drow live in several cities scattered around the Underdark, with outposts scattered throughout the subterranean world. The greatest of these is Menzoberranzan in the depths under the North. Drow are ruled by noble Houses, the matriarchs of which are powerful priestesses of the Spider Queen Lolth. Drow males are never permitted to join Lolth's clergy, but instead become warriors or mages. Drow society is ruthless, and anything up to and including killing a rival is permitted in many situations in order to climb up the social ladder. Drow also employ a great deal of slave labor, poorly treating their captives. They raid the surface occasionally for slaves and loot, though some coming-of-age rituals involve assaults on surface settlements. While drow pose a great threat to those on the surface, they're held somewhat in check by their constant infighting.
Drow tend to be shorter than their surface kin. They have jet-black skin, white hair, and eyes that tend toward red or violet, though various other odd colors have been observed among them. All drow possess some innate magic, such as the ability to cloak an area in magical darkness or outline those enemies who attempt to hide from them in magical purple flames, making them even more dangerous to the unwary.