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|Battle of Castellón|
|Part of the Peninsular War|
|Commanders and leaders|
|Honoré Charles Reille||Marqués de Lazán|
|Casualties and losses|
| 300 dead or wounded,|
The Battle of Castellón was an ambush delivered against a French Imperial detachment under General Reille near Girona during the Peninsular War (1807–14).
An ambush is a long-established military tactic in which combatants take advantage of concealment and the element of surprise to attack unsuspecting enemy combatants from concealed positions, such as among dense underbrush or behind hilltops. Ambushes have been used consistently throughout history, from ancient to modern warfare. In the 20th century, an ambush might involve thousands of soldiers on a large scale, such as over a choke point such as a mountain pass, or a small irregular band or insurgent group attacking a regular armed force patrol. Theoretically, a single well-armed and concealed soldier could ambush other troops in a surprise attack.
France, officially the French Republic, is a country whose territory consists of metropolitan France in Western Europe and several overseas regions and territories. The metropolitan area of France extends from the Mediterranean Sea to the English Channel and the North Sea, and from the Rhine to the Atlantic Ocean. It is bordered by Belgium, Luxembourg and Germany to the northeast, Switzerland and Italy to the east, and Andorra and Spain to the south. The overseas territories include French Guiana in South America and several islands in the Atlantic, Pacific and Indian oceans. The country's 18 integral regions span a combined area of 643,801 square kilometres (248,573 sq mi) and a total population of 67.3 million. France, a sovereign state, is a unitary semi-presidential republic with its capital in Paris, the country's largest city and main cultural and commercial centre. Other major urban areas include Lyon, Marseille, Toulouse, Bordeaux, Lille and Nice.
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Having crept his force up along the right bank of the Fluvià River and set up headquarters at La Armentera, a village near the river's mouth on the Mediterranean Sea, General Lazán prepared a coup de main against the French battalion installed atop Castelló d'Empúries. Since bad roads precluded a night attack, Lazán moved in the early morning, and brusquely forced the French off the ridge. While Reille's troops effected a disciplined fighting withdrawal toward Rosas, the Chasseurs of Juan Clarós, acting as the vanguard for General Castro's division, circled across their path of retreat and set up a position in a grove next to the main road, preparing to block the French passage. Caught in a pincer movement, the French were cut down. Only 80 escaped unwounded and 90 surrendered.
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Luis Rebolledo de Palafox y Melci, 1st marqués de Lazán was an Aragonese officer and general during the Spanish War of Independence. Alongside his brother José de Palafox, the Duke of Saragossa, Lazán was a national hero in 19th century Spain for his defence of Saragossa from the French Imperial armies in 1808 and 1809.
When Reille, established at Figueras, learned of the rout of his men, he set out against the Spaniards the next day with 3,000 infantry and cavalry, aiming to cut their communications with Gerona. In spite of the rapid French movements, Reille was unable to achieve a surprise, and Lazán awaited him with his men solidly entrenched at Castellón. Seeing his attacks repulsed everywhere along the line, Reille decided not to try conclusions with the Spaniards, and Lazán fell back on Gerona unmolested.
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