October 30, 1975 : Juan Carlos assumes power in Spain

Introduction

Prince Juan Carlos becomes Spain’s acting head of state after General Francisco Franco, the dictator of Spain since 1936, concedes that he is too ill too govern. The 83-year-old dictator had been suffering serious health problems for nearly a year. Three weeks after Juan Carlos assumed power, Franco died of a heart attack. Two days later, on November 22, Juan Carlos was crowned king.

Juan Carlos’ grandfather was Alfonso XIII, the last ruling monarch of Spain, who was forced into exile in 1931 after Spain was declared a republic. Born in Italy in 1938, Juan Carlos returned to Spain in 1955 under the invitation of Franco and received a military education. In 1969, Franco designated Juan Carlos his successor. Despite having pledged loyalty to Franco’s authoritarian regime, King Juan Carlos immediately began a transition to democracy after Franco’s death in 1975.

Article Details:

October 30, 1975 : Juan Carlos assumes power in Spain

  • Author

    History.com Staff

  • Website Name

    History.com

  • Year Published

    2010

  • Title

    October 30, 1975 : Juan Carlos assumes power in Spain

  • URL

    http://www.history.com/this-day-in-history/juan-carlos-assumes-power-in-spain

  • Access Date

    October 23, 2017

  • Publisher

    A+E Networks