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We're the kingdom's guards. Its protectors. The mighty wall between chaos and calm.

Leroy to Dr. Jekyll src

Dwarves are a humanoid species featured on ABC's Once Upon a Time. They are native to the Enchanted Forest and the Wish Realm, and first appear in the first episode of the first season.

Most of the dwarves are derived from the species of the same name featured in the fairytale "Snow White" and the Disney film Snow White and the Seven Dwarfs.


Dwarves physically resemble humans but have distinctive ears and noses. They are considered short by human standards, as Prince Charming refers to them as "little people", and the Evil Queen describes them as "little child-beasts"; however, they are taller than traditional fairytale dwarves. The seven dwarves are all about the same height as Snow White.[1] ("Snow Falls", "7:15 A.M.", "Souls of the Departed")

Dwarves are born from eggs, though how these eggs come into existence is not known as there are no female dwarves, and all that hatch from eggs are male in gender. Dwarves hatch out of the eggs fully grown and fully clothed. According to Bossy, they don't get sick. ("Dreamy")

Dwarves are sometimes confused with Munchkins, such as when Zelena referred to Mr. Clark as a Munchkin, but they are different species. One notable difference is that Munchkins are much shorter and have two sexes. ("It's Not Easy Being Green", "Our Decay")

Dwarves don't fall in love and are not interested in romantic relationships. Grumpy, however, is an exception because his egg is affected by fairy dust, which was accidentally dropped by Nova. ("Dreamy")


Dwarves mine the diamonds that get crushed into fairy dust. They love to work and even whistle while they do it. A group of dwarves hatched at the same time, live, and work together as brothers.

Dwarves receive their names from a special pickax, which materializes with each of their own personal names. While these pick axes can also be used by others, they will not show the name of someone who is not a dwarf, but will work for a person who has been shrunken by magic, like a giant who have been shrunken to human size. If a dwarf's ax breaks, the new ax may give them a different name if the dwarf in question has gone through a major change in personality. ("Dreamy", "Tiny")


Before First Curse

In the Enchanted Forest's underground mines, a dwarf named Watchy pays careful attention to eight eggs that are on the verge of hatching. For one of the eight dwarves in this nesting brood, he dreams of a fairy with red hair after this very person accidentally spills fairy dust on his egg. This also causes the dwarf, later given the name Dreamy, to hatch early, and his siblings follow suit by hatching as well. After being cleaned up, the leading dwarf, Bossy, schools them on their mining duties. All eight dwarves receive his own pick ax that generates a name for each. Besides Dreamy, his brothers include Bashful, Doc, Dopey, Happy, Sleepy, Sneezy and Stealthy. Using their pick axes, they learn to mine for diamonds and crush them into fairy dust for the fairies. A year later, Dreamy and Nova become acquaintances after he saves her pouch of fairy dust from going into the mine furnace. She invites him to come to Firefly Hill, but Dreamy does not understand her gesture. Clueless about his growing feelings for Nova, he only realizes this after a woman, Belle, points it out to him. Soon after meeting Nova at Firefly Hill, the two fall madly in love and make plans to see the world. The night Dreamy intends to leave, he is persuaded by Bossy and Nova's teacher, the Blue Fairy, that they do not belong together. After breaking Nova's heart, a hardened Dreamy returns home and breaks his pick ax, to which he receives another one with a new name for himself—Grumpy. ("Dreamy")

Despite breaking things off with Nova, Grumpy's feelings for her remain the same. Wishing to win back his lost love, he sells his wages for a diamond; intending to propose to her. However, the diamond turns out to be a stolen one, and though he is no thief, Grumpy takes the blame and is thrown into jail in King George's castle. He is trapped alone until receiving a cellmate, Snow White, who attempts to escape so she can be with the man she loves. Stealthy breaks in to free both Grumpy and Snow White. As they attempt to escape the castle, she suggests leaving through the back exit, but the dwarves head to the front. Apprehended by guards, Stealthy is shot dead by a stray arrow, and Grumpy nearly faces the same fate until Snow surrenders herself to King George. On her urging, he flees and rejoins his six remaining brothers. Snow White, forced on King George's orders to reject Prince Charming, leaves the castle after doing so. In her misery, she tries to ingest a potion to erase her love for Charming, but Grumpy advises that it's better to live with pain than forget. After the dwarves offer Snow shelter at the dwarves' cottage while she heals from her broken heart, she stays with them. On the day Grumpy discovers Prince Charming has called off his engagement to Princess Abigail, he rushes to tell Snow, but unfortunately, she has already taken the potion. ("7:15 A.M.")

Becoming cold and callous as a result of the potion's effects, Snow White's dwarf friends are alarmed by her personality change and stage an intervention to make her understand how her actions are affecting them. They set examples such as when she brings hay into the house even though Sneezy is allergic to it or when she broke Happy's mug. Snow retorts excuses for her behavior, however, with Jiminy's reasoning, she realizes that her actions are making her friends unhappy. However, her anger turns onto the Evil Queen and she decides on a whim to kill her. Chasing after Snow, Grumpy then drags her back to Rumplestiltskin, who was the person who gave her the potion in the first place. Though there is nothing Rumplestiltskin can do to change Snow's current condition, he does offer her an enchanted bow to kill the Queen. Seeing that she is a lost cause, he gives up trying to stop her and leaves. Snow White goes ahead with her plan, but with a kiss of true love from Prince Charming, she returns to her normal self, though he is kidnapped by King George's forces. Returning to the dwarves' cottage, she apologizes for troubling them with her prior attitude. Upon hearing from Snow that Charming is now King George's prisoner, they offer to help her rescue him. ("Heart of Darkness")

Readying an assault on King George's castle, the dwarves, Granny and Red Riding Hood join Snow White in the fight. After Red gives them the signal that the coast is clear, the dwarves and Snow scale the castle walls and take the guards by surprise. At one point, the guards surround them, but the Blue Fairy and her army of fairies knock the henchman out with fairy dust. Unfortunately, Snow White discovers Prince Charming has already been traded into the Queen's hands. For the sake of her true love's safety, she agrees to meet the Queen for a parley. The dwarves, Granny and Red dislike the idea, but Snow White adamantly wants to follow the Queen's terms. When she does not return, they go searching and find her collapsed over and motionless on the ground. Despite having the appearance of being dead, Snow is actually under a sleeping curse. ("An Apple Red as Blood")

In their grief, the dwarves build a glass coffin in the forest for Snow White to rest in forever and adorn the sides of the coffin with flowers. They are mourning the loss of their friend when Prince Charming appears on the scene. He pleas to at least say goodbye, and the dwarves lift the glass coffin cover off for a brief moment. Charming gives Snow one last kiss; not knowing the power of his kiss breaks the curse she is under. ("Pilot")

After Snow and Charming capture the Evil Queen by freezing her with squid ink, one of the dwarves, Grumpy, is present on the war council as Snow and Charming come to the decision that the death penalty would be most suitable as punishment for the Queen's horrible deeds. On the day of the execution, however, Snow White puts a halt to it out of remorse, and instead, the Queen is exiled out of the kingdom. ("The Cricket Game")

Many months later, the dwarves attend and happily watch Snow White and Prince Charming officially marry in the castle. The ceremony is interrupted by the unprecedented arrival of the Evil Queen. She comes bearing a special gift, and declares she will destroy everyone's happiness in the worst way. Some time following this, Cinderella makes a deal with Rumplestiltskin, and in return, he asks for her first-born child. Because Cinderella doesn't want to go through with her end of the bargain, she tricks him into signing a new contract with squid ink that magically freezes him in place. He becomes a prisoner in a dungeon cell made specifically by the dwarves. ("Pilot", "The Price of Gold")

Due to the impending danger of the Evil Queen's plans, the war council tries to strategize against her. Snow White and Prince Charming find out through speaking with Rumplestiltskin that the Evil Queen plans to cast a powerful curse to take everyone to another land. The key to beating the Evil Queen is their unborn child, who will rise up as the savior in twenty-eight years. The Blue Fairy brings to them the last enchanted tree, which is carved into a magic wardrobe by Geppetto and Pinocchio. The wardrobe has the power to protect and send a person to another land to be unaffected by the curse, with the pregnant Snow White as the one chosen for the journey. However, on the day the curse is cast, Grumpy and Sleepy are on the lookout on top of the castle. While Sleepy is dozing off, Grumpy spots thick black smoke in the air quickly approaching, and signals the bell to let everyone know the curse is coming. At the same time, Snow White unexpectedly goes into labor. Charming tries to persuade Doc that they have to get her into the wardrobe before the baby arrives, but Doc insists it's too late and they cannot move her. With Doc's assistance, Snow gives birth to her daughter Emma. As they have little time before the curse affects them, she and Charming realize Emma must be sent alone into the wardrobe, or all hope is lost. After baby Emma disappears safely into the other world, the curse engulfs the inhabitants of the Enchanted Forest. ("Pilot")

Before Second Curse
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Known Dwarves


On-Screen Notes

Production Notes


Props Notes

  • For the episode "Dreamy", the dwarves' noses were made of silicone and their ears from gelatin.[6]

Set Dressing

Other Notes

  • The seven dwarves were originally unnamed in the Snow White fairytale. They first received names in the 1912 play, Snow White and the Seven Dwarfs. In the play, they were named "Blick", "Flick", "Glick", "Snick", "Whick", "Plick" and "Quee". They were renamed in the 1937 Disney animated film Snow White and the Seven Dwarfs, where they were given the names used on ABC's Once Upon a Time.
  • The standard plural of the noun "dwarf" is "dwarfs". The plural "dwarves" was popularized (though not invented) by the famous author J.R.R. Tolkien in his fantasy fiction works, and specifically refers to fictional fantasy races.[10] The characters on Once Upon a Time correctly refer to the species as dwarves.[11]


Note: "Archive" denotes archive footage.

See also


  1. File:110SnowWhiteAndTheSevenDwarves.png
  2. File:114Title.png
  3. File:121Title.png
  4. 4.0 4.1 Ng, Philana (October 3, 2012). Showrunners 2012: 'Once Upon a Time's' Adam Horowitz and Edward Kitsis. The Hollywood Reporter. “We added an eighth dwarf last year and killed him, and his original name was Sneaky. We were told that seemed derogatory, so we changed it to Stealthy. They were OK with us adding an eighth dwarf and killing the eighth dwarf, but they weren't OK with his name being Sneaky…They were probably right.”
  5. Josh Dallas on the Season One Blu-ray/DVD Audio Commentary for "7:15 A.M."
  6. Schaefer, Glenn (July 19, 2012). It's Emmy time for Once Upon a Time's Vancouver artists. The Province. “The make-up is a subtle approach. we [sic] didn't want to go too far from their natural look. They've got silicone noses and gelatin ears, some have beards and eyebrows.”
  7. File:114AtThoseLights.png
  8. File:114Okay.png
  9. File:221KnockKnock.png
  10. Dwarfs vs. dwarves. Grammarist. Retrieved on August 16, 2018. “Dwarfs is the standard plural of the noun dwarf. Dwarves is a newer variant popularized (though not invented) by English author J.R.R. Tolkien in his fantasy fiction works, including The Hobbit and The Lord of the Rings. The Tolkien spelling is appropriate when referring to little people in fantasy worlds. Dwarfs is better everywhere else.”

    Marian, Jakub. ‘Dwarves’ or ‘dwarfs’ – which spelling is correct?. Jakub Marian's Language learning, science & art. Retrieved on August 16, 2018. “It may come as a great surprise to the fans of The Lord of the Rings, but the correct traditional spelling of the plural of "dwarf" is "dwarfs", not "dwarves". (...) Nonetheless, J. R. R. Tolkien decided to use the spelling "dwarves" throughout his books instead. Tolkien himself admitted that "dwarves" was a misspelling. (...) The spelling may have started off as an error, but it has been living a life of its own and is now considered the standard spelling of the plural when referring to the fictional race created by Tolkien. Due to the books' popularity, other fantasy authors commonly adopt the spelling as well.”
  11. "Snow Falls", "True North", "Dreamy", "Heart of Darkness", "We Are Both", "The Crocodile", "The Doctor", "The Cricket Game", "Tiny", "Lacey", "The New Neverland", "Going Home", "Witch Hunt", "There's No Place Like Home", "Unforgiven", "The Dark Swan", Once Upon a Time, ABC
  12. File:209SnowWhiteStorybook.png
  13. File:607FoundEachOther.png
  14. File:102TornOutPages.png
  15. File:107IsSnowWhite3.png
  16. File:113Pages.png
  17. File:422SnowCharmingStorybook.png
  18. File:616SnowWhiteAndRoseRed.png
  19. File:621AndItBurnsBurnsBurns2.png
  20. File:520HereYouGoFlipped.png (flipped image)
    File:520HereYouGo.png (original image)
  21. File:515CruellaPage.png
  22. File:521HelpTheMost.png
  23. File:522ButHenry.png
  24. File:716BookPages3.png
  25. File:419SheKnewEverything.png

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