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Princess Leonor speaks publicly for first time on 13th birthday to read Spanish Constitution on its 40th anniversary

Leonor, Princess of Asturias, has read and spoken publicly for the first time. The future Queen of Spain, on her 13th birthday, read from the Spanish Constitution on Wednesday alongside her father, King Felipe.

On the occasion of the 40th anniversary of the Spanish Constitution, both King Felipe and Princess Leonor gave readings at the headquarters of the Cervantes Institute in Madrid. Queen Letizia and Infanta Sofía (the younger daughter of the King and Queen) were in the audience.

Others in the audience included the President of the Government, Pedro Sánchez; the President of the Congress of Deputies, Ana Pastor; the President of the Senate, Pío García-Escudero; the President of the Constitutional Court, Juan José González; the President of the Supreme Court and the General Council of the Judiciary, Carlos Lesmes; and the Director of the Cervantes Institute, Luis García Montero among others.

The King, Queen, Princess and Infanta all posed for the press and greeted important guests before heading in for the celebration of the Spanish Constitution’s 40th anniversary.

His Majesty read the Preamble of the Constitution:

“The Spanish Nation, wishing to establish justice, freedom and security and promote the good of all those who integrate it, in use of its sovereignty, proclaims its will to:

  • Guarantee democratic coexistence within the Constitution and laws in accordance with a fair economic and social order.
  • Consolidate a Rule of Law that ensures the rule of law as an expression of popular will.
  • Protect all Spaniards and peoples of Spain in the exercise of human rights, their cultures and traditions, languages and institutions.
  • Promote the progress of culture and economy to ensure a decent quality of life for all.
  • Establish an advanced democratic society, and collaborate in the strengthening of peaceful relations and effective cooperation among all the peoples of the Earth.
  • As a result, the Cortes approve and the Spanish people ratify the following CONSTITUTION.”

    © Casa de SM el Rey

Princess Leonor then read Article 1 of the Preliminary Title of the Magna Carta while both King Felipe and Queen Letizia, who had tears in her eyes, looked on proudly. Article 1 states:

  • 1. “Spain is constituted as a social and democratic State of Law, which advocates freedom, justice, equality and political pluralism as superior values ​​of its legal system”.

  • 2. “National sovereignty resides in the Spanish people, from whom the powers of the State emanate.”

  • 3. “The political form of the Spanish State is the parliamentary Monarchy”.

Members of the Spanish government continued on with the reading of the Constitution including the President of the Government, Pedro Sánchez.

Leonor and Sofía have remained primarily out of the public eye with the exception of a handful of events each year including National Day and Easter Mass. However, over the past year, the King and Queen have brought their two daughters along for more events. Spain’s future monarch, Leonor was presented with her Order of the Golden Fleece earlier this year. And last year on her 12th birthday, the first solo photo of the heir to the throne was released by Casa Real.

If, as expected, Leonor ascends the throne, she will be Spain’s first queen regnant since Isabella II was monarch from 1833 to 1868.

About author

Brittani is from Tennessee, USA. She is a political scientist and historian after graduating with a degree in the topics from the University of Tennessee, Knoxville, in December 2014. She also holds a master's degree from Northeastern University. She enjoys reading and researching all things regarding the royals of the world. Her love of royals began in middle school, and she's been researching, reading, and writing on royalty for over a decade. She became Europe Editor in October 2016, and then Deputy Editor in January 2019, and has been featured on several podcasts, radio shows, news broadcasts and websites.