05-02-2005, 06:57 AM
On Monday morning, second of May, 1808 two large crowds had gathered in Madrid; one outside the city post office in the Puerta del Sol and the other by the main gate of the Royal Palace where royal carriages waited to take the last of the Bourbons off into exile. Suddenly a young boy appeared from a balcony window, he was the last of the male heir to the Spanish throne, Francisco de Paula. Either his appearance or the fact he was crying sparked off the riot that would signal a national uprising against the French. Knives were drawn and the French soldiers there butchered. marshal Murat heard the commotion from his nearby residence and ordered the cavalry to charge into the mob. At the Montelban barrack two Spanish Artillery officer Daoiz and Velarde officers ordered cannon to be turned on their erstwhile allies. The War of Independence had begun!