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Juan Carlos I of Spain

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Juan Carlos I
King Juan Carlos I in 2009
King of Spain
Reign 22 November 1975 – 18 June 2014
Enthronement 27 November 1975
Predecessor Alejandro Rodríguez de Valcárcel (interim Head of State)
Alfonso XIII (as King of Spain)
Francisco Franco (as Caudillo of Spain)
Successor Felipe VI of Spain
Prime Ministers
Spouse Sophia of Greece and Denmark
Infanta Elena, Duchess of Lugo
Infanta Cristina, Duchess of Palma de Mallorca
Felipe, Prince of Asturias
Full name
Juan Carlos Alfonso Víctor María de Borbón y Borbón-Dos Sicilias
House House of Bourbon[1][2]
Father Infante Juan, Count of Barcelona
Mother María de las Mercedes of the Two Sicilies
Born 5 January 1938 (1938-01-05) (age 82)
Rome, Italy
Religion Roman Catholicism

Juan Carlos I (born 5 January 1938) reigned as King of Spain from 1975 to 2014.

His name came from his father (Juan de Borbón), his grandfather (Alfonso XIII) and his mother's father's name (Prince Carlo of the Two Sicilies).

On 22 November 1975, two days after the death of Francisco Franco, Juan Carlos became king. Franco had picked him and prepared him for the job. In 1969 it had been thirty years since the last king. King Juan Carlos helped change Spain from a dictatorship into a parliamentary democracy. In 2008 he was voted the most popular leader in all Ibero-America.

Juan Carlos' wife Queen Sofía of Spain is his third cousin. She is the sister of ex-King Constantine II of Greece.

On 2 June 2014, Juan Carlos announced that he would abdicate in favour of his son, Felipe VI.[3] The date of abdication and handover to Felipe occurred on 19 June 2014. He and his wife kept their titles.[4]


  1. "His Majesty the King Juan Carlos". The Royal Household of His Majesty the King!.
  2. The English-language version of the Official Royal Family website is rendered as Borbon, while in Spanish it is Borbón
  3. Goodman, Al; Mullen, Jethro; Levs, Josh (2 June 2014). "Spain's King Juan Carlos I to abdicate". CNN. Retrieved 2 June 2014.
  4. "Spain will have two kings and two queens". Retrieved 18 June 2014.

Titles and styles

  • 5 January 1938 – 21 July 1969: His Royal Highness The Infante Juan Carlos of Spain
  • 15 January 1941 – 22 November 1975: His Royal Highness The Prince of Asturias
  • 21 July 1969 – 22 November 1975: His Royal Highness The Prince of Spain
  • 22 November 1975 – 18 June 2014: His Majesty The King of Spain
  • 18 June 2014 – : His Majesty King Juan Carlos I of Spain