Stefan Salvatore

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Name: Stefan Salvatore
Relationships: Damon Salvatore (brother), Zach Salvatore (decendant), Sarah Salvatore (decendant)
Fandom: Vampire Diaries
Other: Played by Paul Wesley
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Stefan Salvatore is one of the main character in The Vampire Diaries fandom (both the novels and the TV show).

Book Canon

Stefan is over 500 years old, and a vampire. He was born in Italy and fell in love with Katherine von Swartzschild during his human life and before he was transformed into a vampire. Katherine also turned Stefan's brother Damon into a vampire. The brothers have a contentious relationship, even in death, as they had both been in love with Katherine and both blame the other for Katherine's death. Years later they discover that Katherine faked her own death, to try and resolve the brothers quarreling.

In an attempt to get away from his brother, Stefan left Italy and Europe in search of a new start. He ends up in a town called Fells Church, in modern day America. Here he encounters Elena Gilbert, a young woman he is inexplicably drawn to, who bears a strong resemblance to his first love Katherine. He initially avoids Elena, but as the two attend the same high school, this becomes difficult. Stefan eventually begins a relationship with Elena, but his brother's arrival in Fells Church forces Stefan to face his past.

During the series the two brothers are other forced to work together, and Stefan often entrusts Damon with ELena's safety and protection, helping them to mend their fractious relationship.

TV Show Canon

Stefan is an American of Italian decent who lived during the Civil War in Mystic Falls. He had competed with his older brother Damon Salvatore. for the affection of a young woman Katherine Pierce. Katherine, a vampire, turned both brothers. Stefan talked his brother into completing the transition and becoming a vampire.

Following his transition, Stefan struggled to control his bloodlust, and during the 1900s he became known as the Ripper of Monterey.

In season 1 of the show, Stefan returns to his hometown and becomes enamored with Elena Gilbert, Katherine's doppelganger. He attends the local high school in an effort to get to know her better and the two begin a romantic relationship. There are many obstacles to be overcome in their relationship including the return of his brother Damon, who is also intrigued by Elena.

Despite their relationship ending in season 4, Stefan remained close to Elena. Despite several false starts, death, resurrection and a deal with the Devil, Stefan managed to reconcile with his brother. He became close friends with Caroline Forbes and eventually married her.


A lot of Stefan fans find his Ripper persona interesting and either want the character to embrace it or fight it[1]. There are also a number of anti-Stefan fans who dislike the character because of his Ripper tendencies and his treatment of Elena and other characters.[2]

Common Pairings

Most popular het pairings were inspired by canon relationships or canon interactions. Stefan/Elena (Stelena) was initially very popular and there was much fan discourse about which Salvator brother was better for Elena.

Stefan/Rebekah and Stefan/Caroline (Steroline) were initially considered small crackships.[3] However during and following season 5, Steroline became more popular as it appeared to be an endgame ship.

Slash pairings for Stefan are less popular. There is the incestuous pairing of Stefan/Damon, the two Salvatore brothers. There is also the pairing of Stefan and his old friend, Klaus.

Fanon and Common Tropes in Fanworks

  • Human AUs often place Stefan in a similar role, with the only difference been that he has always been human. Other works place a human Stefan in High School AU, Historical AU or other scenarios.
  • Ripper Stefan or Dark Stefan, sometimes appears as an antagonist. This is often in works featuring Stefan in (sometimes) unhealthy relationships where his violent instincts are encouraged, but it also appears in works where Stefan's friends and romantic interest help him to control his bloodlust.
  • Pre-canon works can be used to examine Stefan's relationships with his brother Damon, his love interest Katherine Pierce or his old friend Klaus Mikaelson.


  • For once, it's not about the blood by eleai, When we look at Stefan’s character this season, I think we kind of have to break it down into two parts. We have to look first at what Plec wrote, and then what Paul Wesley acted (along with the directing and such in his scenes.) They tell two very different stories, and I think that deciding what to believe makes a huge difference with how you view season three.
  • Stefan Salvatore Part 1 Part 2 Part 3 by lauren3210, I think to truly understand The Vampire Diaries as a whole show, we need to discuss the very first main character we meet, voice-wise at least. So, here is my essay on Stefan Salvatore, where I hope to try to explain all of his faults and issues, and why they make me love him. I will touch on the SE relationship, if only to provide examples of this character’s story arc, but this will mainly focus on Stefan as a separate being. Also, while writing this, I realised I had way more feels about this character than I originally thought, so I’ve decided to put this essay into multiple parts. This part is insanely long, but don’t let that put you off!
  • Ripper's Anonymous by eleai, He is the man who sat in a bathroom with Caroline and taught her how to breathe through the blood, he is the man who saved Bonnie from Damon and tried to broker peace with a werewolf and saved his brother umpteen times and protected the town and loved Elena. He is that person, but he is also a that person who ripped two people apart in a little house in Tennessee and then put their bodies back together. He is a vampire, and that means that there is a part of him that will always want to kill.
  • Ripper!Stefan is no Angelus by with-lemonade, With the introduction of Ripper!Stefan in the season two finale of The Vampire Diaries, there have been a lot of comments around the TVD community comparing Stefan to the Buffy the Vampire Slayer character of Angelus. Being a big fan of both shows, I honestly do not see a good basis for comparison. For me, these two characters, while having superficial similarities, are in completely different categories if evil.

Example Fanworks

Examples Wanted: Editors are encouraged to add more examples or a wider variety of examples.




Archives and Communities

Links and Resources


  1. ^ See also Ripper's Anonymous meta by eleai
  2. ^ An anti-Stefan thread at began Oct 12 2012, accessed 31/12/2018.
  3. ^ Steroline on crackshipgifs, Tumblr post, 2012