Note:  Do not rely on this information. It is very old.


Bar-sinister. Strictly speaking this is a misnomer for "bend-sinister." It is one of the honourable ordinaries in heraldry, and is formed by two parallel diagonal lines, containing a third part of the field, crossing the escutcheon from the top right-hand corner to the bottom left-hand side. In heraldic language this is from the sinister (hence its name) chief to the dexter base points, it being the exact opposite of the bend proper. Though another mark has now taken its place it was anciently the "difference" denoting illegitimacy, and in such meaning has become a very general term outside the limits of armory.