Carlos, Duke of Parma

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His Royal Highness
The Duke of Parma and Piacenza
Prince Carlos, Duke of Parma, in 2017
Head of the House of Bourbon-Parma
Tenure 18 August 2010 – present
Predecessor Carlos Hugo
Heir Apparent Carlos, Prince of Piacenza
Born (1970-01-27) 27 January 1970 (age 54)
Nijmegen, Netherlands
(m. 2010)
Issue Prince Hugo de Bourbon de Parme (illegitimate)
Princess Luisa, Marchioness of Castell'Arquato
Princess Cecilia, Countess of Berceto
Prince Carlos, Prince of Piacenza
Full name
Carlos Xavier Bernardo Sixto Marie de Bourbon de Parme
House Bourbon-Parma
Father Carlos Hugo, Duke of Parma
Mother Princess Irene of the Netherlands
Religion Roman Catholicism

Carlos Carlos Xavier Bernardo Sixto Marie, Duke of Parma and Piacenza (born 27 January 1970) is the current head of the House of Bourbon-Parma, as well a member of the Dutch Royal Family. He is the claimant to the defunct throne of the extinct Duchy of Parma. In addition, he is considered by some a contested pretender to the Carlist claim to the throne of Spain under the name Carlos Javier I (English: Charles Xavier I).[1] In 2016, Carlos told the Spanish press that, while (like his father in 2005) he "does not abandon" his claim to the throne, it is "not a priority" in his life, and he "will not dispute" [no planteo pleito] the legitimacy of King Felipe VI.[2] Since 15 May 1996, he has been part of the enlarged Dutch royal family with the title – conferred on him by the Queen of the Netherlands – of "Prince de Bourbon de Parme" in the Dutch nobility.

Early life[edit]

Prince Carlos with mother Princess Irene.

Carlos was born in Nijmegen in the Netherlands as the eldest child of Carlos Hugo, Duke of Parma, and Princess Irene of the Netherlands. He has two younger sisters, Princess Margarita and Princess Carolina, and a younger brother, Prince Jaime. He was baptized in the Catholic faith on 10 February 1970 by Archbishop Marcel Lefebvre. Carlos spent his youth in several countries including the Netherlands, Spain, France, England, and the United States. In 1981, when he was eleven, his parents divorced. Together with his mother and his siblings, he then moved to Soestdijk Palace (Baarn) in the Netherlands. He lived at the palace for a number of years with his grandparents, Queen Juliana of the Netherlands and Prince Bernhard of the Netherlands.

Prince Carlos' baptism in 1970

Education and career[edit]

Carlos studied political science at Wesleyan University in Connecticut and demography and philosophy at Cambridge University in England.

After completing his studies, Carlos worked for the company ABN AMRO in Amsterdam, where he was involved with preparations for the introduction of the euro. He then worked for a period in Brussels as a public affairs consultant for the company European Public Policy Advisors (EPPA). Since 2007, he has been engaged in projects concerning sustainability in the business world.

Dutch royal house[edit]

Carlos is sometimes present at representative occasions concerning the royal house of the Netherlands. In 2003, he was involved, together with his aunt, Queen Beatrix, in the inauguration of the "Prince Claus Leerstoel", a professorship named after the Queen's husband, Prince Claus. During special events of the royal house, he is regularly present. For example, he was one of the organizers of the wedding celebration of Prince Constantijn of the Netherlands and Princess Laurentien of the Netherlands.

Personal life[edit]

Relationship with Brigitte Klynstra and son[edit]

Prince Carlos had a relationship with Brigitte Klynstra (born 10 January 1959), the stepdaughter of Count Adolph Roderik van Rechteren Limpurg. During this relationship he fathered a son:

In December 2015, the then 18-year-old Carlos Klynstra started the legal procedure to attempt to change his surname to that of his biological father[3] which would also allow him to use the title of "Prince". The Duke of Parma opposed this on the basis that it was in contravention of the traditions of the House of Bourbon-Parma. On 9 March 2016 the Minister of Security and Justice declared his family name request valid.[4] Later that year a court in The Hague concurred with the minister in declaring the claim valid under Dutch law.[5]

According to the judgement, Carlos Hugo will be entitled to be known as "Zijne Koninklijke Hoogheid Carlos Hugo Roderik Sybren prins de Bourbon de Parme" (His Royal Highness Prince Carlos Hugo Roderik Sybren of Bourbon-Parma); this will come only into effect once the Dutch king has signed the royal decree. According to the press release of the Council of State of 28 February 2018, the name change does not mean that Klynstra is now also a member of the Royal House of Bourbon-Parma. That is a private matter of the House itself and this is outside the jurisdiction of the Dutch Nobility Law.[6]

Marriage to Annemarie Gualthérie van Weezel[edit]

On 7 October 2009, it was announced through his mother's private secretary that Prince Carlos would marry Annemarie Cecilia Gualthérie van Weezel. The civil marriage took place on 12 June 2010 at Wijk bij Duurstede. The church wedding was to have taken place at the La Cambre Abbey in Ixelles on 28 August, but it was postponed owing to his father's illness. Prince Carlos Hugo died shortly afterwards.

Annemarie (born The Hague, 18 December 1977) is the daughter of Johan (Hans) Stephan Leonard Gualthérie van Weezel and Gerarda Gezine Jolande (Ank) de Visser. Her father was a member of the House of Representatives of the Netherlands for the Christian Democratic Party, the Dutch ambassador to the Council of Europe in Strasbourg, and the ambassador to Luxembourg. Gualthérie van Weezel's paternal grandfather was Jan Hans Gualthérie van Weezel, who was the head of the police in The Hague and member of the Dutch resistance during the Second World War. Annemarie Gualthérie van Weezel went to secondary school in Strasbourg and obtained a Master of Laws degree at the University of Utrecht. Subsequently, she completed a post-graduate study in Radio and Television journalism at the University of Groningen. Gualthérie van Weezel works as a parliamentary journalist in The Hague and Brussels for the Dutch public channel Nederlandse Omroep Stichting (NOS). In Brussels, she met Prince Carlos for the first time.

On 2 August 2010, it was revealed that the health of his father, the Duke of Parma, was quickly deteriorating due to cancer. As a consequence, the church wedding of the prince Carlos and his fiancée was delayed. In a final announcement about his condition, the Duke confirmed Carlos as the next Head of the House of Bourbon-Parma.[7] Just before his death the old Duke of Parma named Annemarie as "Contessa di Molina" (Countess of Molina).[8] Prince Carlos's father died on 18 August 2010 in Barcelona, Spain, at the age of 80; Carlos subsequently became the next head of the House of Bourbon-Parma.

The new Duke of Parma and Annemarie were married on 20 November 2010 in La Cambre Abbey.[9] Together, they have two daughters and a son:

In 2016, at the baptism of Prince Carlos Enrique, Prince Carlo conferred on his son the title of "Principe di Piacenza" (Prince of Piacenza), which is the traditional title assigned to a crown prince of the House of Bourbon Parma, the continuer of the dynasty, and future Duke of Parma and Piacenza.[10] In September 2017, the Duke of Parma named his daughter Luisa as "Marchesa di Castell'Arquato" (Marquise of Castell'Arquato), and her younger sister Cecilia was named as "Contessa di Berceto" (Countess of Berceto).[11]

His rights as the Carlist pretender[edit]

Carlos Xavier, in an interview with the newspaper La Vanguardia, said:

I don't set out dynastic lawsuits.[12]

— Barcelona, October 11th, 2010

Titles, styles and honours[edit]

Titles and styles[edit]

  • 27 January 1970 - 2 September 1996: His Royal Highness Prince Carlos of Parma
  • 2 September 1996 – 18 August 2010: His Royal Highness The Prince of Piacenza[13]
  • 18 August 2010 – present: His Royal Highness The Duke of Parma and Piacenza




  1. El primogénito de Carlos Hugo de Borbón – Nuevo pretendiente carlista a la corona de España – website news agency [Europa Press (Spanish)
  2. "Ser príncipe me ayuda a mejorar el bienestar común". La Vanguardia. 11 November 2016. Retrieved 11 February 2018.
  3. "Buitenechtelijke zoon prins Carlos jr. Wil een Bourbon de Parme worden". 24 December 2015.
  4. "Bezwaarschrift prins Carlos afgewezen". Blauw Bloed (in Dutch). Retrieved 2016-03-14.
  5. "Claim buitenechtelijke zoon Carlos erkend". 24 November 2016.
  6. Press release - website Council of State of the Netherlands
  7. News of the House of Parma (in Spanish) Archived 5 February 2005 at the Wayback Machine
  8. Interview in the French magazine Point de Vue, edition 13–20 October 2010: Carlos & Annemarie de Bourbon de Parme, Les amoureux de Parme
  9. "Maxima shares Prince Carlos' joy as he weds his princess-bride". Hello Magazine. 24 November 2010.
  10. In Duomo il battesimo del Principe Carlo Enrico Archived 8 October 2017 at the Wayback Machine website of the Italian newspaper Gazzetta di Parma
  11. La Duchessa di Parma e Piacenza, e la Figlia, Principessa Luisa Irena, in Visita a Castell'Arquato – Website of the Royal and Ducal House of Bourbon-Parma
  12. Amela, Víctor-M. (11 October 2010). "Ser príncipe me ayuda a mejorar el bienestar común". La Vanguardia (in Spanish). Barcelona: Conde de Godó. p. 60.
  13. Almanach de Gotha (182nd ed.). Almanach de Gotha. 1998. p. 55. ISBN 0953214206.

External links[edit]

This article initially used material from the Wikipedia article Prince Carlos, Duke of Parma, which is released under the Creative Commons Attribution-ShareAlike 3.0 Unported License (view authors). Changes by Royalpedia users can be viewed by clicking 'View history'.