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Basic Information

A coppersmith (also known as a brownsmith) is, as the name suggests, a smith who specialises in working in copper. A coppersmith may also work in bronze and/or brass, but that trade is sometimes known as redsmithing.

Traditionally this trade would consist of a certain amount of decorative and ornamenting work (jewelry was normally a seperate trade) and quite a bit of cookware and general domestic goods. Copper is traditionally a semi-precious metal but one with a fair few mundane uses. Bronze and brass even more so, being copper alloys with a variety of specific applications. Of course, in the pre-iron era, bronze, brass and even copper were worked for weapons and armour as well and bronze and brass were frequently used in the gunsmithing trade as well.

For currencies that use a sub-silver bullion coin, a coppersmith might be called upon to strike an issue of coins, especially for a local, low volume mint that can't justify a full time coiner.


1. full source reference

Game and Story Use

  • This craftsman might well buy fairly mundane (but realistic) items of loot from PCs, especially in a historical or low fantasy game.
  • He would also be a logical place to buy various bits of cookware - and maybe equipment for use in alchemy as well.
  • Note that low-tech redsmithing can include arsenical bronze … and many copper deposits tend toward 1% arsenic by weight anyway. The job can have some unpleasant surprises.
    • Where you have non-human sapients with greater arsenic resistance, they may dominate the bronze trade.
    • Where you have traditional fae with their traditional iron-bane, they may counter this with arsenic resistance and some excellent arsenical bronzework.
    • The arsenic poisoning is suggested as one of the reasons for the Crippled Smith archetype.
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