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5 Untrained Civilians Who Took On Armies

#2. Juana Galan

Carmen Escobar Carrio, Wikipedia

In 1808, Napoleon, running out of scenic holiday destinations to invade, somehow totally forgot about his neighbor to the south, Spain. So that year he dispatched his troops, kicking off the Peninsular War.

worldgallery
"Spain, huh? There it is, just dangling off of France. Wow, how did I miss that?"

Only 20 years old and working as a barmaid in the town of Valdepenas, Juana Galan was not expecting a surge of French soldiers to come storming through her village. But on June 6, that's exactly what happened. At that time, most of the men were fighting Napoleon's forces elsewhere in the nation. Juana, unfazed by things like rifles and Frenchmen and French riflemen, began organizing the women in her village to form a trap for the approaching army.

Wikipedia
A sexy trap.

When the army arrived, Juana and her friends were ready. They dumped boiling water and oil on the French troops, which by all accounts will instantly take the fight out of pretty much anyone. Then Juana, armed with only a batan, beat back the heavily armed French cavalry with her squad of village women, almost none of whom were armed with guns.

The French retreated, giving up on capturing not just Juana's town but the entire province of La Mancha, leading to ultimate Spanish victory. Today, she is seen in Spain as a national hero, a symbol of resistance, strength, patriotism, feminism and hitting shit with a stick.

Wikipedia
"Hold! Do you see this goddamn thing?"

#1. Pier Donia

pylgeralmanak, Wikipedia

In 1515, Dutch farmer Pier Donia was living a happy life with his wife and children in a small village in the Netherlands when a civil war broke out. Having no military experience to speak of, Donia came to the conclusion that he didn't give two twisted shits about the war and decided to continue farming whatever it is that Dutch people farm. So he was kind of like Mel Gibson at the beginning of Braveheart.

Getty
Tulips don't give a crap about your freedom.

Unfortunately for Donia, the resemblance would not end there.

When his village refused to pay dues to a notorious legion of soldiers loyal to the government known as the Black Band, the soldiers rolled through and burned everything to the ground, raping and killing Donia's wife and murdering his children. When Donia returned from the fields to see the carnage, he vowed revenge against the Habsburgs and their butt-loving faces.

Donia was about to go Braveheart on their asses.

Wikipedia
They may take his life, but they'll never take his ability to take their lives.

Despite not knowing how a boat works or ever firing a gun in his life, he quickly formed a band of pirates and set sail for some assbeat. By the end of 1515, he had captured 28 Dutch Navy boats and become an infamous rebel, earning the truly stunning nickname Grutte Pier ("Big Peter" in Dutch). By 1517, he had started taking over entire villages, and would ransom some of the higher class citizens before burning down their cities himself.

Wikipedia
He may be going a bit far by now, but he does look fabulous.

Later that year, the Dutch ruler Charles V decided he'd had enough of Big Peter and dispatched an entire fleet to stop him. A man who, let us remind you, came into this with no training or experience.

Although he was defeated in the initial attack, Donia struck back by taking the entire fleet of 11 ships before crushing an army of 300 soldiers who showed up as reinforcements. In 1519, disillusioned that he was now becoming the very thing he'd set out to defeat, Donia retired and died of natural causes the next year. That's right -- he quit because he was kicking too much ass.

Wikipedia
For his valiant efforts he got a rugby club named after him and ... this.

See more crazy civilians in 6 Insane True Stories Too Awesome for a Chuck Norris Movie. Or check out The 6 Most Epic One Man Armies in the History of War.

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