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Mattes Tunstall †
Biographical Information
Birth Name
Mage Name
Nickname Mattes
Died June 28, 249 HE
Race Eastern Hillman
Nationality Tortallan
Physical Description
Gender Male
Height 6' 7"
Hair Brown and greying
Eyes Brown
Family Information
Adoptive Parents
Lover Sabine of Macayhill (246 - 249 HE)
Myaral Fane (c. 231 HE)
Adoptive Children
Other Family
Patron God
Rank Commoner
Residence Corus
Provost's Guard
Senior Guardsman
Guard District Lower City
Guardhouse Jane Street
Guard Watch Evening
Training Partners
Previous Partner Clary Goodwin (233 - 247 HE)
Current Partner Beka Cooper (since 247 HE)
Trainee Partner Beka Cooper (246 HE)
Guard Badge
Events Kidnap of Prince Gareth
Bread Riot
Bibliographical Information
Tortallan Universe character
First Mentioned '
Only Mentioned '
First Appeared Terrier
Last Appeared Mastiff
Latest Appearance '
Only Appearance '
Last Mentioned '

Matthias Tunstall, often called Mattes, was a resident of Corus and guardsman for the Provost's Guard, assigned to Evening Watch in the Lower City. He was partnered with Clara Goodwin until she accepted a desk job. From late 247 HE onwards his new partner was Beka Cooper, who had also been his trainee some time previous. He was well-known for his good work and was a veteran of over a decade. However, Mattes was easygoing, more so than Beka imagined a famous veteran of the dangerous Lower City to be. Like his partner Goodwin, Tunstall was a good enough guardsman that he could have any position in Corus that he wanted, but chose to stick to the Lower City. Tunstall was good-looking and flirtatious, although he developed a more serious relationship with Lady Sabine, a lady knight of Tortall who occasionally visited a favorite haunt of Tunstall, Goodwin, and Beka.


Matthias Tunstall originates from the eastern hillcountry[1], where his native language was Hurdik[2]. That's why Goodwin often refers to him jokingly as "hill barbarian".

At some time before or after 231 HE Tunstall had an relationship with Myaral Fane. They wanted different things out of their lives, however, with Tunstall wanting fun and Mya wanting babies, thus they split up and Mya eventually married while Tunstall is still a bachelor fifteen years later.[3]

Tunstall has been working as a Dog since 226 HE. Seven years later he was partnered with Clara Goodwin.[4] They have worked together ever since. Both work the Evening Watch in the Lower City, reporting to Jane Street kennel. By 246 HE, Tunstall has the position of a Senior Dog[5]. He has been offered promotion to Corporal and could have even been Sergeant but has refused every time because he didn't want the additional paperwork.[6]

While doing his work Tunstall once fell off a roof. He was chasing a criminal in Prettybone District and had already gotten hold of him, when the criminal threw soot in Tunstall's face. He fell three stories down into a pile of dung.[7] In 244 HE Tunstall was living in Rowan's Lodgings on Bott Street in Patten District.[8] It's unknown if he still lived there two years later, when Beka became his and Goodwin's puppy, but later he seems to have moved, because he then owns a lodging house of his own.

He first met Lady Sabine when he, Goodwin, and Beka got into trouble in the Barrel's Bottom. Since then, the two of them meet some times when he is off-duty and by May 9, 246 HE they seem to have been to supper together several times[9]. In September the following year they still maintain a romantic relationship, even though Lady Sabine once commented that she likes her single state. About a month after Tunstall and Lady Sabine started seeing each other he repainted the doors and shutters of the lodging house he owned and where he lived. He also added new boards on the stairs and railings. He'd probably done so to impress Lady Sabine.[10]

On Midwinter of 246/247 HE Pounce saved Tunstall's live, causing the man to refer to Pounce as hestaka, which means wise-one in Tunstall's native language, in the following months and perhaps even years and to also have great respect for Pounce.[2]

During the Bread Riot on September 8, 247 HE Tunstall had both his legs broken when people trampled them. Hansevor Remy carried him out of the crowd and into the shelter of the Jack and Pasty.[11] Afterwards his legs needed weeks to heal, which is partially caused by the complexity of his injuries—his legs are both broken in several places—and partially due to the fact that in his years as a Dog, Tunstall had already had enough healings administered to himself that he has gotten somewhat resistant to them. He deeply disliked being kept abed, even more so after he realized that Beka and Goodwin were to go off to Port Caynn to investigate counterfeit money. After two weeks abed he began to enjoy the paperwork Kebibi Ahuda sent to him, because he was getting very bored[12].

Spoiler Alert: The following section contains spoilers about Mastiff.

In Mastiff, he and Beka are sent on a special Hunt to find the kidnapped Prince Gareth. It is revealed that he has been working for the traitors to the Crown for the latter half of the Hunt. He allowed himself to be bribed with a noble title, so that he could marry Sabine of Macayhill. When Beka realizes his betrayal, they fight and she narrowly wins. When he loses, Tunstall attempts to roll himself off a cliff, but Beka stops him so he will face the Crown's justice and Sabine finds out he was a traitor. He dies overnight of cold and battle shock. Afterwards, his soul comes to Beka on a pigeon, and he explains the motives behind his betrayal. He apologizes to Beka and calls her and Goodwin his true sisters before his soul departs for the Black God's realm.

Physical description

He is about six foot seven inches (6'7") tall with long arms and long legs. In Mastiff, it is mentioned that he stands a half a head taller than Farmer Cape, who is 6'3". He has dark skin, deep brown eyes and a long, curved nose. He wears his hair, which was originally brown but is greying now, cropped short, and sports a short beard and a moustache. Beka compares him to an owl.[4] [11]

Personality and traits

"If her husband comes looking for you, I won't be your second, not after last time. [...] I stood there like an idiot while you made the cove laugh so hard at your jokes he ended up buying all of us breakfast. Some duel that was."
—Goodwin to Tunstall[src]

Tunstall is normally good-humoured which makes him quite the opposite of Goodwin. It would seem as though he flirts and jokes, even when he is on duty as Beka witnesses on her first day with her training Dogs [13], but Tunstall can also get quite serious. He has the ability of making people leave with just a glance at them.[14] While Lady Sabine herself doesn't care about people making jokes on her behalf because she beds a common Dog, Tunstall himself cares very much and is fast to lose his good humour when he hears of it.[15] When he thinks he does so while standing still[16], and even when he isn't carrying his baton he makes the movements of tapping it.[17]

Tunstall likes to grow miniature roses, which he has learned from a Yamani friend.[18] Beka even comments about him being the best gardener in the Lower City, considering his garden only cosists of window and porch boxes.[10] He also has a great liking of apple-raisin patties, especially those made by Deirdry Noll[19]. Tunstall's favorite color is a pale yellow[20].

Spoiler Alert: The following section contains spoilers about Mastiff.


Tunstall appears both in Terrier and Bloodhound, although he plays a far greater role in the first novel, because he is at home with a broken leg for the most part of the latter. He has a large role as Beka's partner in the last installment of the Provost's Dog trilogy, Mastiff.

Notes and references

  1. Bloodhound, September 8, 247 (p. 32)
  2. 2.0 2.1 Bloodhound, September 8, 247 (p. 37)
  3. Terrier, April 7, 246 (p. 222)
  4. 4.0 4.1 Terrier, April 1, 246 (p. 32)
  5. Terrier, April 1, 246 (p. 30)
  6. Bloodhound, September 7, 247 (p. 13)
  7. Terrier, April 7, 246 (p. 235)
  8. Terrier, Prologue, From the journal of Matthias Tunstall
  9. Terrier, May 9, 246 (p. 482)
  10. 10.0 10.1 Bloodhound, September 12, 247 (p. 129)
  11. 11.0 11.1 Bloodhound, September 9, 247 (p. 67)
  12. Bloodhound, September 24, 247 III (p. 529)
  13. Terrier, April 1, 246 (p. 39)
  14. Terrier, April 3, 246 (p. 143)
  15. Bloodhound, September 7, 247 (p. 21)
  16. Bloodhound, September 17, 247 (p. 345)
  17. Terrier, April 3, 246 (p. 144)
  18. Terrier, April 3, 246 (p. 142)
  19. Terrier, April 1, 246 (p. 42)
  20. Bloodhound, September 12, 247 (p. 131)

See also

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