The combat of Valverde of 19 February 1810 was a minor Spanish victory on the borders of Andalusia. In the aftermath of the French invasion of Andalusia, just about the only Spanish army in the area was the Army of Estremadura under the Marquis La Romana, based around Badajoz. This army was directly threatened by Reynier’s 2nd Corps, based at Merida, only thirty miles to the east.
Despite this, La Romana was still able to dispatch some troops to threaten the French in Andalusia. The most active of those forces was a division under the command of General Ballasteros, sent south towards the Condado de Niebla, a coastal area west of Seville.
The first fighting during this expedition took place at midnight on 19 February 1810, at Valverde, forty miles west of Seville. Here Ballesteros surprised the cavalry brigade of Mortier’s 5th Corps, killing its commander (General Beauregard) and scattering the brigade. Ballesteros then advanced east to Ronquillo, twenty miles to the north of Seville, fighting a second battle on 25-26 March.
|A History of the Peninsular War vol.3: September 1809-December 1810 - Ocana, Cadiz, Bussaco, Torres Vedras, Sir Charles Oman. Part three of Oman's classic history begins with the series of disasters that befell the Spanish in the autumn of 1809 and spring of 1810, starting with the crushing defeat at Ocana and ending with the French conquest of Andalusia and capture of Seville, then moves on to look at the third French invasion of Portugal, most famous for Wellington's defence of the Lines of Torres Vedras.|
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