|Louis Alphonse de Bourbon|
|Duke of Anjou|
|Legitimist pretender to the French throne |
as Louis XX
|Pretendence||30 January 1989 – present|
|Predecessor||Alfonso, Duke of Cádiz|
|Heir apparent||Louis, Duke of Burgundy|
|Born||25 April 1974|
|Father||Alfonso, Duke of Anjou and Cádiz|
|Mother||Carmen Martínez-Bordiú, 2nd Duchess of Franco|
Louis Alphonse de Bourbon (Spanish: Luis Alfonso Gonzalo Víctor Manuel Marco de Borbón y Martínez-Bordiú, French: Louis Alphonse Gonzalve Victor Emmanuel Marc de Bourbon; born 25 April 1974) is the head of the House of Bourbon by primogeniture. The Bourbons are the royal family of Spain. Members of the family formerly ruled France and other countries. As a pretender to the French throne, he is styled Louis XX and Duke of Anjou.
Louis Alphonse considers himself the senior heir of King Hugh Capet of France (r. 987–996). His claim to the French throne is based on his descent from Louis XIV of France (r. 1643–1715) through his grandson Philip V of Spain. Philip renounced his claim to the French throne under the Treaty of Utrecht in 1713. The rival Orleanist pretenders argue that this, as well as being born a Spanish citizen, makes Louis Alphonse ineligible for the throne. They also question whether he truly is the heir-male of Louis XIV, given the rumors of illegitimacy surrounding Alfonso XII (his great-great-grandfather).
Louis Alphonse is patrilineally the senior great-grandson of King Alfonso XIII of Spain. However, his grandfather Infante Jaime, Duke of Segovia, renounced his rights to the Spanish throne for himself and his descendants owing to his deafness (a renunciation disputed by legitimists). The crown of Spain has descended to his second cousin, King Felipe VI of Spain. Through his mother, he is also a great-grandson of Spain's caudillo (dictator), General Francisco Franco and through his father, a great-great-great-grandson of Queen Victoria of the United Kingdom.
Louis Alphonse was born in Madrid, the second son of Alfonso de Borbón, Duke of Anjou and Cádiz, and of his wife María del Carmen Martínez-Bordiú y Franco, eldest granddaughter of Francisco Franco. Alfonso was at that time the dauphin (using "Duke of Bourbon" as title of pretence) according to those who supported the claim of his father, Infante Jaime, Duke of Segovia to the French throne. On 20 March 1975, the Infante Jaime ("Henri VI" by Legitimist reckoning) died. Alfonso then asserted his claim to be both Head of the House of Bourbon and Legitimist claimant to the throne of France and the Co-Principality of Andorra. As such, he took the title "Duke of Anjou".
Louis Alphonse's parents separated in 1982, and their Catholic marriage was annulled in 1986. His mother has since remarried civilly twice; he had two stepsisters Mathilda (deceased) and Marella, and a stepbrother Frederick, all born before his mother's marriage to Jean-Marie Rossi and a half-sister, Cynthia Rossi, born afterwards. On 7 February 1984, Louis Alphonse's older brother Francisco died as the result of a car crash in which Louis Alphonse was also injured, although less so than their father, who was driving the automobile. From that date Louis Alphonse was recognised as the heir apparent to his father by the Legitimists. As such, he was given the additional title Duke of Bourbon on 27 September 1984 by his father. In 1987, the Spanish government declared that titles traditionally attached to the dynasty (such as the Dukedom of Cádiz) would henceforth be borne by its members on a lifetime only basis, forestalling Louis Alphonse from inheriting that grandeeship.
On 30 January 1989, his father died in a skiing accident near Vail, Colorado. Later, in 1994 Louis Alphonse received 150 million pesetas from a lawsuit against Vail Associated, which owned the ski resort where the accident occurred. Louis Alphonse was recognised by some members of the Capetian dynasty as Chef de la Maison de Bourbon (Head of the House of Bourbon) and took the title Duke of Anjou, but not his father's Spanish dukedom. He is considered the rightful pretender to the French throne by adherents of the Legitimist movement.
Louis' father was elected by the French Society of the Cincinnati to be the representative of Louis XVI (leading to the resignation of the Count of Paris, who had represented the Admiral d'Orléans). On 16 June 1994, Louis Alphonse was elected to succeed his father as the representative of Louis XVI, whose military aid was instrumental to the independence of the United States of America.
In addition to his Spanish citizenship, Louis Alphonse acquired French nationality through his paternal grandmother, Emmanuelle de Dampierre, also a French citizen. He attended the Lycée Français de Madrid, obtaining his COU in June 1992. He studied economics at the IESE Business School. He worked several years for BNP Paribas, a French bank in Madrid.
In 2017, Louis Alphonse stated that he wishes for the remains of his ancestors, including King Charles X, to remain at the Kostanjevica Monastery, after a movement reportedly began to have the King's remains moved to be buried along with other French monarchs in Basilica of St Denis.
In an interview with Paris Match on June 13, 2010, Louis Alphonse declared himself to be a monarchist, “but not anti-republican”. He argues for a constitutional monarchy, with a king who acts as moral authority, foreign ambassador, unifying figure, and reminder of a nation's history.
On January 8, 2013, Louis Alphonse spoke out publicly against the bill introducing same-sex marriage in France.
In March 2018, Louis Alphonse was named honorary president of the Francisco Franco Foundation, a position held by his grandmother Carmen Franco until her death in December 2017. On July 15, later that year, he headed a Movement-for-Spain demonstration at the Valley of the Fallen monument, leading supporters of the late Spanish dictator, Francisco Franco. They opposed the Spanish socialist government's plan to remove Franco's remains from a basilica near Madrid. He also launched a change.org petition, calling for the resignation of the Socialist Prime Minister Pedro Sánchez.
In early 2019, Louis Alphonse expressed public support for the Yellow vests movement in France. Later that year in March, he gave a speech at the World Congress of Families, where he called for return to "Christian society".
Marriage and children
Louis Alphonse's engagement to marry Venezuelan María Margarita Vargas Santaella, the daughter of the businessman Victor Vargas, was announced in November 2003. They were married civilly in Caracas on 5 November 2004 and religiously on 6 November 2004 in La Romana, Dominican Republic. None of the members of the Spanish royal family attended the wedding. Although no official reason was given, it was no secret that the then king, Juan Carlos I, did not approve his cousin's claim to the French throne, nor the fact that Louis Alphonse issued the wedding invitations styled as "Duke of Anjou".
Louis Alphonse and María Margarita had their first child, Eugénie, on 5 March 2007, at Mount Sinai Medical Center, Miami. She was baptised at the papal nunciature in Paris in June 2007. Her godparents are Prince Charles-Emmanuel of Bourbon-Parma and his wife Constance. Legitimists recognize her as Princess Eugénie (Eugenia de Borbón Vargas in Spain) and also as the current Madame Royale, the French style commonly attributed to the eldest unmarried daughter of a king of France.
The couple had twin sons, Louis and Alphonse, on 28 May 2010 in New York City. Louis, as Legitimist Dauphin of France, is expected to succeed his father as head of the French royal house, the senior Bourbon/Capetian line, in Legitimist reckoning. Louis and Alphonse were baptised on 5 September 2010 at St Peter's Basilica in Vatican City by Cardinal Angelo Comastri. Louis' godparents were Arancha Martínez-Bordíu (his father's maternal aunt) and Francisco D'Agostino (his mother's brother-in-law). Alphonse's godparents were Amparo Corell de Trenor, Baroness de Alacuás and Lorenzo Perales.
Titles and styles
- 1974–2018 : The Most Illustrious Don Luis Alfonso Marco de Borbón y Martínez-Bordiú
- 2018–present: The Most Excellent Don Luis Alfonso Marco de Borbón y Martínez-Bordiú
He is expected to eventually succeed to the Dukedom of Franco, held by his mother Carmen Martínez-Bordiú, 2nd Duchess of Franco, since her succession to that title was officially confirmed in July 2018.
- His biography at the website of the Institut Duc d'Anjou gives his name as "Louis Alphonse de Bourbon" "Archived copy". Archived from the original on 12 December 2009. Retrieved 28 July 2012.CS1 maint: archived copy as title (link) CS1 maint: bot: original URL status unknown (link)."
- His name is given as "Prince Louis Alphonse of Bourbon and Martínez-Bordiú, Duke of Anjou" by Olga S. Opfell in Royalty who Wait: The 21 Heads of Formerly Regnant Houses of Europe (2001), p. 11.
- Eilers, Marlene A. Queen Victoria's Descendants. Princess Beatrice. Rosvall Royal Books, Falkoping, Sweden, 1997. pp. 166, 181; ISBN 91-630-5964-9
- Enache, Nicolas. La Descendanace de Marie-Therese de Habsburg Reine de Hongrie and Boheme. Maison royale regnante d'Espagne. ICC/Nouvelle Imprimerie Laballery, Paris, 1999, p. 535. (French). ISBN 2-908003-04-X.
- Willis, Daniel A. The Descendants of King George I of Great Britain. The Descendants of Princess Anne, The Princess of Orange. Clearfield, Baltimore, 2002. p. 231. ISBN 0-8063-5172-1
- Ardisson, Thierry, Louis XX: Contre-enquête sur la monarchie, 1986. ISBN 978-2855653341.
- Opfell, Olga S. (2001). Royalty Who Wait: The 21 Heads of Formerly Regnant Houses of Europe. McFarland & Company. ISBN 978-0-7864-0901-3.
- Juan Sisinio Pérez Garzón, Isabel II: Los Espejos de la Reina (2004)
- Gazette du Palais, Tribunal de grande instance de Paris (1re Ch.) 21 décembre 1988, accompanied by the comments of G. Poulon, président de chambre honoraire à la cour de Paris. Prince Henri Philippe Pierre Marie d'Orléans et autres c. Prince Alphonse de Bourbon. 8 March 1990. In French.
- Les Manuscrits du CEDRE V, Le Royaume d'Espagne III. Cercle d'Etudes des Dynasties Royales Europėennes (CEDRE), Paris, 1992, ISSN 0993-3964 p. 162-164
- Genealogisches Handbuch des Adels, Fürstliche Häuser, Band XV. "Spanien". C.A. Starke Verlag, 1997, p.98. ISBN 3-7980-0814-0.
- Al. Ma. (19 February 2017). "Francoski princ Burbonski želi, da njegovi predniki ostanejo pokopani na Kostanjevici" [A French prince of Bourbon wishes the remains of his ancestors to remain at Kostanjevica] (in Slovenian). RTV Slovenija. Retrieved 20 February 2017.
- Match, Paris. "Louis de Bourbon - Les descendants du Roi-Soleil". parismatch.com.
- "Manifeste de Mgr le duc d'Anjou au sujet du mariage pour tous | Alliance Royale | Le parti politique royaliste". archive.wikiwix.com.
- Bourbon, Louis de. "25 janvier 2014 : Discours de Mgr. le duc d'Anjou". institutducdanjou.fr.
- O'Reilly, Edward (24 January 2019). "Did You Know? The Tale of the three Frenchmen who still lay claim to the throne". The Local. Stockholm. Retrieved 5 February 2019.
- "Emanuela de Dampierre, a cuchillo contra Carmen Martínez-Bordíu". Elsemanaldigital.com. Retrieved 29 November 2011.[permanent dead link]
- Terra Noticias. "Los Duques de Anjou anuncian el nacimiento de sus hijos Luis y Alfonso". Noticias.terra.es. Archived from the original on 6 September 2011. Retrieved 29 November 2011.
- "Je suis heureux, avec Marie-Marguerite, de vous annoncer la naissance d'Henri, notre quatrième enfant, aujourd'hui à 13:05 GMT.Il pèse 4,200 kg et mesure 53 cm. La maman et le bébé se portent bien. Nous remercions tous ceux qui s'associent à cette naissance par la prière.pic.twitter.com/yYucXKGX2r". @louisducdanjou (in French). 2019. Retrieved 14 July 2019.
- Boletín Oficial del Estado: no. 161, p. 67519, 4 July 2018. Retrieved 2 January 2020 (in Spanish)
- López, Gema (20 June 2013). "La familia Franco se reparte los títulos: Carmen Martínez Bordiú será marquesa de Villaverde; Luis Alfonso de Borbón nunca será duque de Franco". elconfidencial.com (in Spanish). Retrieved 25 November 2015.
- Thierry Ardisson. Louis XX. Contre-enquête sur la monarchie., Olivier Orban, 1986, ISBN 2-85565-334-7
- Jean Foyer, Titre et armes du prince Louis de Bourbon, Diffusion-Université-Culture, 1990.
- Apezarena, José. Luis Alfonso de Borbón: Un príncipe a la espera, Random House Mondadori, 2007, ISBN 978-84-01-30552-8.
- Cassani Pironti, Fabio. "Bref crayon généalogique de S.A.R. la Princesse Marie-Marguerite, Duchesse d'Anjou, née Vargas Santaella", Le Lien Légitimiste, n. 16, 2007.
- Opfell, Olga S. H.R.H. Louis-Alphonse, Prince of Bourbon, Duke of Anjou: Royal House of France (House of Bourbon), Royalty Who Wait: The 21 Heads of Formerly Regnant Houses of Europe. Jefferson: McFarland & Company, Inc., Publishers, 2001. 11–32.
Media related to Louis Alphonse de Bourbon at Wikimedia Commons