The Dauk were people who populated the northern reaches of the Continent before the First Landing. While the Dauk culture is gone, its heritage survives in mythological figures incorporated into the Nordling tradition.
Dauk had their own language and writing system. Their writings survive on menhirs and are still studied and deciphered. Notable yet controversial studies of several inscriptions were done by Eltibald, who delved into the curse of the Black Sun.
Similarly to how other human groups lived before the Nordlings introduced feudalism to the North, the Dauk were nomadic. As they discovered agriculture—evidenced by their worship of a goddess of harvest and fertility and a guardian of farmers and gardeners—the Dauk had begun to settle down and raise menhirs.
Apart from the aforementioned goddess similar to Melitele, they prayed to two deities regarded as precursors to Coram Agh Tera and Veyopatis by scholars. Menacing Lilit had her place in their myths too.
Alongside the Wozgor, the Dauk are counted among most ancient humans on the Continent. Arriving immediately after the Conjunction of the Spheres, they settled between the Dragon Mountains and the Gulf of Praxeda in nowadays Narok, Talgar, Hengfors League, Gelibol, Nimnar valley, and went up to Velhad, which lies in the cold Far North. Their contact with elves and dwarves must have been limited as most nonhumans associate the dawn of the human age with the First Landing.
What led to their extinction is unknown and greatly disputed by historians. One theory holds they were gradually assimilated by Nordlings.
- While The Last Wish mentions both the Dauk and unspecified primordial human groups, the first confirmation that the first belonged to the second comes in The World of the Witcher, a compendium for CD PROJEKT RED's The Witcher franchise. Andrzej Sapkowski's writings are more vague, with a perceived inconsistency between The Last Wish and Blood of Elves, where humans are said to appear only following the First Landing.
- The apparent contradiction might be possibly explained with the mistake in Arnelius Grock's classification. Nordling researchers might have attributed nonhuman achievements to ancient humans, reflecting how real-world colonialists perceived various Native American and African ruins as remnants left by ancient Europeans or Lost Tribes of Israel instead of admitting their indigenousness. The "real" Dauk might be then a nonhuman group that was assimilated into humanity or other race through interbreeding.
- In Andrzej Sapkowski's Oko Yrrhedesa role-playing game of debatable connection to The Witcher world, two tribes of a species called vorkers appear, the halla-vorkers and the dauk-vorkers. Dauk-vorkers are described as 1.20 meters tall, stocky humanoids with Mongolian facial features and goblin manners who arrived at the Yarra valley, where they came into conflict with more peaceful halla-vorkers and Wood Elves.
- While the area where dauk-vorkers live does not match territories of the Dauk described in The Witcher sources, it's possible their names just share etymology as e.g. an Elder Rune.