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Anniversary of the succession of King Juan Carlos of Spain

Mon 22th Nov 2010

Today marks 35 years since King Juan Carlos assumed the throne to the 'Kingdom' of Spain.

Just two days after the death of Francisco Franco, Juan Carlos was designated King according to the law of succession delared by the dictator. The Spanish throne had been 'vacant' (but never officially removed) since 1947, but Franco named Juan Carlos as his successor and the next ruler of Spain in 1969.

The King's popularity grew as he personally oversaw the transition of Spain from a dictatorship to parliamentary democracy, and this was affirmed when he took his part in thwarting an attempted military coup in 1981.

Both the King and his wife, Queen Sofia of Spain - also known as Princess Sofia of Greece & Denmark - are distant relatives of Great Britain's Queen Victoria.

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