Legion of the Damned

Legion of the Damned - Sven Hassel

“No ordinary novel of war, this has the special quality of being an accurate account not only of armies fighting but of the opposed loyalties of individuals fighting within themselves while remaining loyal – not to a dreadful system – but to the known and treasured friends. A masterpiece.”


Chicago Sunday Tribune



“After the fall of Kharkov the 27th Regiment was withdrawn and sent to Dnepropetrovsk, where we were allotted the armored train ‘Leipzig’. As soon as we were installed, we and another armored train went to Kharol, 100 kilometres west of Poltava, where we did some firing practice to get acquainted with our new guns. We five were allotted a coach: The Old Man was coach commander and Porta was in charge of the eight machine guns and three automatic cannon; Stege was in charge of No. 1 Turret and I of No. 2 Turret with its 12-cm long barreled gun, one of which Stege also had. Pluto was in charge of the radio and communications. For crew we were given twenty-five recruits who had four weeks’ training. The youngest was sixteen, the eldest sixty-two. They made a pitiful sight.

We went up toward the front where we shot a village to smithereens and engaged Russian artillery with our automatic arms. After that we went Southeast. Day and night we thundered along the hundreds of kilometres of track, stopping only to take in water and oil, or to wait in a siding to let past a train coming from the opposite direction. We were able to stretch out and sleep in our coach and had a wonderful time. War, we thought, was not really so bad if only you could sleep your sleep out every now and again. It was the continual lack of sleep to which we had been subjected that made it all so intolerable and our nerves raw…”

Translated into the following languages as:

BRAZILIAN: A Legiao dos Condenados
CHINESE: (Legion of the Damned)
CROATIAN: Legija Prokletih
CZECH: Legie Prokletych
DANISH (org. language): De Fordømtes Legion
DUTCH: Bataljon der Verdoemden
ENGLISH: Legion of the Damned
FINNISH: Tuomittujen Legioona
FRENCH: La Légion des Damnés
HUNGARIAN: Kárhozottak Légiója
ICELANDIC: Hersveit Hinna Fordämdu
ITALIAN: Maladetti da Dio
LATVIAN: Noladeto Legions
NORWEGIAN: De Fordømtes Legion
POLISH: Legion Potepiencow
PORTUGUESE: Regimento da Morte
ROMANIAN: Ligiunea Blestematilor
RUSSIAN: (Legion of the Damned)
SERBIAN: Legija Proleitih
SLOVENIAN: Legija Prekletih
SPANISH: La Legión de los Condenados
SWEDISH: De Fördömdas Legion
TURKISH: Lanetliler Taburu