|Battle of Cabezón|
|Part of the Peninsular War|
|Commanders and leaders|
|Gregorio de la Cuesta|| Jean-Baptiste Bessières |
| 300 regular cavalry|
|Casualties and losses|
The Battle of Cabezón was an engagement early in the Peninsular War on 12 June 1808 between a small Spanish militia force (grandiloquently styled the "Army of Castile"), based in Valladolid, and a detachment of Marshal Bessières' French Army Corps under General Lasalle.
The battle took place when General Cuesta's small army, scraped together almost from scratch to defend Old Castile, deployed itself at the bridge over the Pisuerga at Cabezón, just 13 kilometres (8.1 mi) outside Valladolid, to bar the road from Burgos against oncoming French divisions. Rather than dig in on the opposite bank of the river, Cuesta, swept along by the enthusiasm of his men, rushed his troops across the bridge against almost double his number, with predictable results: Lasalle's veteran cavalry trampled Cuesta's raw recruits with ease and marched on to Valladolid.
The Peninsular War (1807–1814) was a military conflict between Napoleon's empire and Bourbon Spain, for control of the Iberian Peninsula during the Napoleonic Wars. The war began when the French and Spanish armies invaded and occupied Portugal in 1807, and escalated in 1808 when France turned on Spain, previously its ally. The war on the peninsula lasted until the Sixth Coalition defeated Napoleon in 1814, and is regarded as one of the first wars of national liberation, significant for the emergence of large-scale guerrilla warfare.
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Events from the year 1808 in France.
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