Stephen de Windesore
Fictional Character
"Clash of Arms"
Set in OTL
Type of Appearance: Direct POV
Nationality: England
Date of Birth: c. 1255
Date of Death: Early 14th century (probably between 1306 and 1309)
Cause of Death: Torn apart by demons (apparently)
Occupation: Merchant

Magister Stephen de Windesore (1255-1308[1]) was an Englishman who lived outside London and an expert in heraldry. He was a fat, ill-tempered man past fifty.

One year, he travelled to the biennial tournament at the castle of Thunder-ten-tronckh in Westphalia not for the clashing of arms but for the coat of arms of the contestants. This tournament was renowned throughout Europe and attracted great knights from all over. This proved to be a bonanza for de Windesore who recorded all manner of coats that he had studied but had never seen before.

Although not a fighter, de Windesore nevertheless became involved in a clash of arms himself. He disputed with an Italian named Niccolo dello Bosco, whom he chanced to meet in a tavern, over who knew heraldry better. His temper caused him to make a wager over it. When asked by Bosco what the stakes were to be, de Windesore answered that he could ask what he will since he would not win. When de Windesore won, he would fling dello Bosco into a dung heap for his insolence.

They began taking turns asking one another questions about heraldry with the winner being the one who stumped the other. The "battle" went on into the night, and the two returned to de Windesore's room at the inn. After several hours, dello Bosco announced he was tired of the battle, and asked de Windesore what arms the Devil bore. Magister Stephen replied that only the Devil knew that. Instantly Bosco revealed that he was in fact the Devil, and carried Magister Stephen to Hell. Windesore saw the inscription "Abandon all hope, ye who enter here" on the gates of Hell, before being given over to three demons.[2]


  1. Dates estimated.
  2. See, e.g., Departures, pgs. 96-102.