May 2 – Dos de Mayo in Spain

Posted on May 2, 2016

Growing up in Southern California, I have always known about Cinco de Mayo, which translates to “Five of May”: the Mexican celebration of an unlikely victory against the French in 1862. Cinco de Mayo is a popular holiday in some portions of the U.S., and not just among Mexican American people!

But I've never heard of Dos de Mayo (“Two of May”).

This holiday is also a historical anniversary of a battle against French troops. This time, it was in 1808. This time, it was in the city of Madrid, Spain.

The people of Madrid rebelled against the French troops occupying their city – and the rebellion was brutally crushed. Hundreds and hundreds of Spaniards died by much better armed French soldiers.

And then the French moved to avenge their own losses by killing all those arrested in the uprising and all those possessing weapons!

The French leaders apparently thought that their swift repression of the Spaniards would help them maintain control of the country – but actually, it just made Spaniards angrier, and there were rebellions in various parts of the country. So started the Peninsular War.

Speaking of Madrid...

I got to visit Madrid, Spain, a couple of years ago. Here are a few of my favorite sights:

  • The Royal Palace:
  • The rows of statues leading up to the Palace:
  • Retiro Park:
  • The Crypt below Almudena Cathedral:

Also on this date:

Sham el-Nessim in Egypt

Anniversary of the modern legend of the Loch Ness Monster

Plan ahead:

Check out my Pinterest boards for:
And here are my Pinterest boards for:

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