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By Heresies Distressed
03 - By Heresies Distressed 01.jpg
Author David Weber
Abbreviation BHD
Illustrator Ellisa Mitchell (maps)
Publication date 2009
Published by Tor Books
ISBN 978-0765315038
Publication Order
Preceded by
By Schism Rent Asunder
Followed by
A Mighty Fortress

By Heresies Distressed is a science fiction novel written by David Weber and published by Tor Books. It is the third book of the Safehold Series and the direct continuation of the storyline of By Schism Rent Asunder.

It was released on July 31, 2009.

Timeframe: October, Year of God 892 - September, Year of God 893

Plot summary[]

It is November of the Year of God 892 on the world of Safehold: in retribution for the Ferayd Massacre, the Royal Charisian Navy under Admiral Rock Point lays waste to large parts of the Delferahkan port city of Ferayd. Also, and to the disbelief of many, Rock Point has the priests of the Inquisition responsible for the deaths of Charisian merchants sentenced to death and hanged right on the spot.

All over the world different factions react to the fundamental changes that are taking place; while the Republic of Siddarmark is mainly interested in securing its financial interests, the Church of God Awaiting prepares for a propaganda war as well as for a naval one, and back in Charis, the rebellious Temple Loyalists under former bishop Mylz Halcom plan their campaign of terrorism and sabotage against the newly founded Empire of Charis.

Some three months later, Cayleb II Ahrmahk, King and Emperor of Charis, arrives in Cherayth to meet his Chisholmian subjects – and his mother-in-law, the Queen Mother Alahnah – for the first time. After a warm welcome from the people as well as from the Queen Mother, Cayleb addresses the Chisholmian parliament, reassuring his peers that his course of action is the best one possible. With his trusted advisor Merlin at his side, he debarks from Chisholm with new strength, as his fleet sails south to begin the Invasion of Corisande.

Meanwhile, back in the holy city of Zion, Grand Inquisitor Zhaspahr Clyntahn and Chancellor Zahmsyn Trynair learn of the execution of the Schuelerite priests in Ferayd. Clyntahn immedialtely puts all blame on the Charisians, but Trynair explains how Charis has written proof of the Ferayd Massacre and will use it against the temple. A subsequent investigation by the Temple finds that the priests in Ferayd did in fact commit criminal actions, but also declares that the Charisian government had no right to prosecute, much less kill them. Some time later, the Grand Inquisitor meets an informant and learns of a cabal of priests who secretly oppose the Group of Four, calling themselves the Circle.

The Grand Duchy of Zebediah surrenders to the Charisian invaders without a single shot being fired. Cayleb agrees to leave Grand Duke Tohmas in power as long as the latter respects the Imperial crown. The invasion force proceeds to Corisande Island and makes its landing in the Barony of Dairwyn. The local capital of Dairos is taken without any serious resistance. Only days later, the Royal Charisian Marine Corps engages the Corisandian Army in the Battle of Haryl's Crossing, which ends with an overwhelming Charisian victory due to superior arms and tactics. At the same time, all Corisandian ports are besieged by the Royal Navy.

In the following months, the Corisandian Army is able to hold Talbor Pass, thus keeping the Charisians from reaching the capital city of Manchyr. Eventually, however, the invaders manage to sneak up in the defenders' back and the line of defense breaks down, General Koryn Gahrvai surrenders to Emperor Cayleb. All remaining Corisandian forces fall back to Manchyr, and Cayleb's army soon lays siege to the city. Prince Hektor has his younger children smuggled out of Corisande and brought to Delferahk by sea.

Meanwhile, Cayleb's wife, Empress Sharleyan, has to deal with various matters of state, as well as with some less than helpfull noblemen who question her decisions and ability to lead. In order to distract herself from these day-to-day problems for a few days, she decides to visit the remote Convent of Saint Agtha. Once there, however, the Empress and her guardsmen are ambushed by a group of Temple Loyalists who were given information about her destination and the strength of her guard by her uncle, the Duke of Halbrook Hollow; the Duke, who disapproves the alliance with Charis, hopes to capture his niece and force her return to Chisholm, but Bishop Mylz has him killed as soon as he is of no more use to the Temple Loyalists' true goal: to kill Sharleyan.

Merlin learns of the attack on Sharleyan and proceeds to Saint Agtha's as soon as he can. The Empress' guardsmen are killed one by one, yet they too inflict terrible damage on their attackers and manage to keep Sharleyan alive until Merlin arrives. The seijin unleashes the full superhuman power of his PICA body, slaughtering the Temple Loyalists along with Bishop Mylz, leaving no survivors behind to speak of what they witnessed. Sharleyan and Edwyrd Seahamper are shocked to see Merlin, whom they know to be in Corisande with Cayleb.

Subsequently, the secret of Nimue Alban is revealed to both of them, and they meet with Cayleb, whom Merlin brings back to Tellesberg aboard a recon skimmer. Sharleyan also learns that her beloved uncle was the traitor responsible for the death of her guardsmen. Merlin then gives her and Cayleb a communicator, so that they can speak to each other after the Emperor's return to Corisande.

In Manchyr, Prince Hektor decides to offer his surrender to Cayleb, but he and his son are assassinated by agents of the Church before an agreement can be arranged. The Prince's generals have no other choice than to offer the total surrender of the League of Corisande, which is subsequently dissolved. Its armies are disbanded, and its territories become part of the Charisian Empire.

The Emperor and Empress meet in Cherayth to spend the winter, finally finding some time to actually commit to their relationship. Meanwhile, the Group of Four, whose members are beginning to distrust each other more and more, tries to prepare for the things to come.

And in the Delferahkan capital of Talkyra, Prince Hektor's daugther, Princess Irys, whose under-age brother had been proclaimed Prince of Corisande by both Charis and the Temple, swears bitter revenge to Emperor Cayleb.

Publishing data[]

Edited by Patrick Nielsen Hayden

Book design by Ellen Cipriano

Maps by Ellisa Mitchell



Charlz AbylynLywys AhbahtZhefry AhbahtCayleb II AhrmahkZhan AhrmahkKahlvyn Cayleb AhrmahkZhanayt Ahrmahk the YoungerZhanayt Ahrmahk the ElderRayjhis AhrmahkZhenyfyr AhrmahkAlyk AhrthyrFranz AhstynPhylyp AhzgoodHektor Aplyn-AhrmahkMerlin AthrawesHektor BahnyrBorys BahrmynRahnyld IV BahrnsAhzwald BanahrHanbyl BaytzNahrmahn II BaytzTrahvys BaytzFelayz BaytzMahrya BaytzOhlyvya BaytzHauwerd BreygartDahryn BryndynZhon ByrkytSamyl CahkraynZhasyn CahnyrKarlos ChalmyrzYerek CharlzHauwyl ChermynTaiwyl CheryngKynt ClareykZhaspahr ClyntahnLewk CohlmynGahlvyn DaikynMytrahn DaivysTymythy DarysHektor DaykynHektor Daykyn the YoungerIrys DaykynRaichynda DaykynCharlz DoyalMahkynty DragonmasterRhobair DuchairnAdorai DynnysErayk DynnysStyvyn DynnysTymythy DynnysKevyn EdwyrdsStyvyn ErayksynWyllym ErayksynErek XVIITairyn FahrmynPayter FaircasterAhdym FhairlyAhrnahld FalkhanVyk FraidmynHairys FyshyrRahnyld GahrmynKoryn GahrvaiRysel GahrvaiWyllys GairahtNaithyn GalvahnLywys GardynyrWyllys GraisynStyvyn GraisynStyvyn GraivyrAndrai GyrardMahrak HahlmynSairaih HahlmynPawal HahlyndAhndrai HahskynMahrys HaimynMylz HalcomBahrkly HarmynZhoel HarysLywys HoldynEhdwyrd HowsmynVyrnyn HwystynFarahk HyllairAhlfryd HyndrykDunkyn HyndyrsZhozef HyrstChiyan HysinAvrahm HywstynPaitryk HywytAhntahn IllianHauwyrd JynkynErnyst JynkynsTraivyr KaireeTomhys KairmynAhrdyn KestairLairync KestairEvelyn KnowlesJeremiah KnowlesMairah LywkysBryahn LahftynNailys LahrakShairmyn LahsahlClyfyrd LaimhynVyk LakyrRhobair LathykZhim LaynTaryl LektorBryahn Lock IslandRhobair MahklynRahzhyr MahklynTohmys MahklynYsbet MahklynHauwyrd MahkneelStywyrt MahlykTahdayo MahntaylAilas MahntynZheryld MahrysAllayn MaigwairZhaksyn MaiyrZhosh MakaivyrGwylym ManthyrAlyx MychailMyldryd MychailRhaiyan MychailStyvyn MychailPhylyp MyllyrHairym NethaulKohdy NylzTrahvys OhlsynDustyn OlyvyrAhkyllys PahlzarAhlvyno PawalsynTymahn QwentynAhnzhelyk PhondaGharth RahlstahnBynzhamyn RaiceLyndahr RaimyndCarlsyn RaiyzArttu RaizyngyrEkohls RaynairWyllem RaynoZhames II RaynoHailyn RaynoBahrtol RohzhyrNynian RychtairHain SahlmynMahrak SahndyrsJennifer SarmacKayleb SarmacRahss SawalRahnyld SeacatcherRhyzhard SeafarmerEdwyrd SeahamperPaityr SellyrsLarys ShaikyrPayter ShainHahl ShandyrAhlvyn ShumayThomys ShylairNyklas StantynDomynyk StaynairMaikel StaynairAhrdyn StaynairGreyghor StohnarZohzef StywyrtZher SumyrsTohmys SymmynsHahl SymynZhorj SymynAirah SynklyrGairyt TanyrDaishyn TaysoAlahnah TaytSailys TaytSharleyan Tayt AhrmahkHauwerstat ThompkynWu-shai TiangZahmsyn TrynairZhairymiah TryntynLyam TyrnBryndyn TyrnyrSamyl TyrnyrHahl UrbahnZhak UrvynBryahn UshyrAhdym VynairZherohm VyncytAidryn WaimynByrtrym WaistynEdmynd WalkyrGreyghor WalkyrLyzbet WalkyrMychail WalkyrStyv WalkyrZhorj WalkyrFrahnklyn WallycePaityr WylsynnHauwerd WylsynnSamyl WylsynnAhnainah WystahnEdvarhd WystahnAllayn YairleyDunkyn YairleyRayjhis YowanceAibram ZayvyairTohmys ZhaksynZhoel ZhanstynHainz ZhaztroWyll ZheffyrGahrmyn ZhonairWahlys ZhorjAhlber Zhustyn


HMS DancerHMS Dawn StarHMS DestinyHMS DreadfulHMS Empress of Charis


Corisande IslandDairosFeraydManchyrPriory of Saint HamlynTellesberg


Battle of Haryl's CrossingSiege of Manchyr


Blink-lizardChewleafPersimmon figrecon skimmer

External links[]

Safehold Novels
Off Armageddon ReefBy Schism Rent AsunderBy Heresies DistressedA Mighty FortressHow Firm A FoundationMidst Toil and TribulationLike A Mighty ArmyHell's Foundations QuiverAt the Sign of TriumphThrough Fiery Trials