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Second Battle of Sverren

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The Second Battle of Sverren took place in 760.M41 during the Sabbat Worlds Crusade.[1a]


Having been reclaimed from the Archenemy since 758.M41, Sverren was overrun again when Archon Nadzybar launched a counter-offensive against Warmaster Slaydo. Slaydo dispatched General Bulledin to re-take the planet, since Bulledin had been one of the two commanders who successfully conquered the world in 757-758. This proved to be fortuitous for reasons that perhaps even Slaydo did not consider.[1a]

Bulledin, who remembered the gruelling first campaign on Sverren, resolved in his private journal that "This place will not belabour me twice." This resolve translated as a dogged refusal to retreat which communicated itself to his officers and helped shore up the morale of the rank-and-file. Thus, even in the face of overwhelming numbers, the Imperials stubbornly refused to withdraw, and successfully delayed the Archenemy forces until reinforcements from Slaydo arrived.[1a]

When the relief forces arrived, it was determined that the Chaos warhosts on Sverren had been commanded not only by Magister Sholen Skara, but also by Archon Nadzybar himself.[1a] Later historians commented that it was perhaps fortunate that Bulledin had been unaware of this, or even he might have decided that retreat was a tactically sound decision.[1b]

Aided by reinforcement, Bulledin drove the Chaos forces back to the Southern Continent, where they dug in and held firm, despite repeated Imperial offensives. Sixteen months later, the momentum of Nadzybar's counter-offensive was spent, and he and Skara retreated, escaping back to Balhaut after an indecisive battle with the Imperial pursuers on Valens 160.[1a]

Even later, the Second Battle of Sverren was identified as one of a handful of possible "tipping points" at which defeat in one particular theatre would have spelled disaster for the entire Crusade effort. Slaydo himself refused to be drawn out on the subject, but several Imperial tacticians and historians guessed that he must have been aware that defeat on Sverren would have left the entire mid-line front of the Crusade vulnerable to Nadzybar's offensive.[1b] As it was, Sverren was one of several delays that set back Slaydo's timetable for the reconquest of Balhaut by months or years, along with the protracted campaign on Cociaminus, outbreaks of rosepock distemper on Formal Prime and Lucius, and a protracted drought and famine on Eco's Hope.[1a]

See also