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Jaén Celebrates the 8th Centenary of the Battle of Las Navas de Tolosa

Tuesday, July 17, 2012

Number: 1788

With the participation of 10th Brigade ‘Guzmán el Bueno’

The present force parades in La Carolina

The present force parades in La Carolina (Photo:10th Mechanised Infantry Brigade)

 The lieutenant general greets officers

The lieutenant general greets officers (Photo:10th Mechanised Infantry Brigade)

 Ceremony held at ‘Las Huelgas’ Monastery in Burgos

Ceremony held at ‘Las Huelgas’ Monastery in Burgos (Photo:Heavy Forces)

The 8th Centenary of the Battle of Las Navas de Tolosa, which remembers the victory of the Christian troops over the Muslim army in 1212 during the Reconquest, was commemorated on 16th July in La Carolina (Jaén). The town, near the site of the conflict, hosted a series of events to honour the Armed Forces, represented by 10th Mechanised Infantry Brigade ‘Guzmán el Bueno’.

Various civilian authorities were present at the tributes, headed by the minister of Foreign Affairs and Co-operation, Mr. José Manuel García-Margallo. Also attending were representatives of the autonomous governments of Aragón, Castilla-La Mancha and Navarra. The military delegation was led by the director of the Centre for Advanced Defence Studies, Lieutenant General Alfonso de la Rosa, accompanied by the commander of the 10th Brigade, General Teodoro Baños. Outstanding among the various ceremonies held were the celebration of a field mass; the unveiling of a monument commemorating the 8th Centenary; undertaking a Flag Tribute; the presentation of the keys to the city to several civilian and military authorities; and, to conclude, an Oath of Allegiance to the Flag for civilian personnel.

The events began at nine o’clock in the morning in the church square in Navas de Tolosa –municipality of La Carolina (Jaén)-, where the bishop of Jaén, The Most Reverend Ramón del Hoyo, officiated a field mass.  The festivities were brought to a close with the Oath of Allegiance to the Flag for civilians, which had the participation of 2nd Mechanised Infantry Regiment ‘La Reina’ personnel.

The celebrations were within the framework of the commemoration of the victory by the allied Christian army-made up of soldiers from the kingdoms of Castille and Navarra, the Crown of Aragón, as well as volunteers from other territories-, which fought and defeated the  Almohad army, much greater in number.  This act marked a turning point in the course of the Reconquest, which permitted seizing various Andalusian cities from the Muslim invaders.

 Burgos Joins the Festivities

Moreover, the Chapter House of the ‘Santa María la Real de Las Huelgas’ Monsatery  (Burgos) was also the venue, on 16th July at six o’clock in the evening, of a moving tribute to the Christian combatants who fought and won the epic, decisive battle.

The ceremony was held in front of the replica of the Standard of Las Navas that is conserved in this temple.  The tribute was presided over by the military commander of Burgos, Soria and Cantabria, General Miguel Alcañiz, who was accompanied by, among other authorities, the mayor of Burgos, the president of the High Court of Justice of Castille and León, along with the deputy Government delegate to Burgos.