Louis de Bourbon, Duke of Anjou

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His Royal Highness
The Duke of Anjou and Bourbon
Legitimist pretender to the French throne
Head of the House of Bourbon
Tenure 30 January 1989 – present
Predecessor Alfonso, Duke of Anjou and Cádiz
Heir apparent Louis, Dauphin of France[1]: 47 
Born (1974-04-25) 25 April 1974 (age 50)
Madrid, Spain
(m. 2004)
  • Eugénie, Madame[1]: 47 
  • Louis, Dauphin of France[1]: 47 
  • Alphonse, Duke of Berry[1]: 47 
  • Henri, Duke of Touraine[1]: 47 
Full name
Louis Alphonse Gonzalve Victor Emmanuel Marc de Bourbon
House Bourbon
Father Alfonso, Duke of Anjou and Cádiz
Mother Carmen Martínez-Bordiú
Religion Roman Catholicism

Prince Louis Alphonse Gonzalve Victor Emmanuel Marc de Bourbon, Duke of Anjou, Duke of Bourbon[1] (In French: Louis de Bourbon, duc d'Anjou, duc de Bourbon);[2][3][4] born 25 April 1974) is the head of the House of Bourbon. Members of the family formerly ruled France and other countries. According to the legitimists, Louis Alphonse is considered the pretender to the defunct throne of France as Louis XX.[5] With the death of his father, he has been using the title of Duke of Anjou since 1989.

Louis Alphonse considers himself the senior heir of Hugh Capet, King of the Franks (reigned 987–996). His claim to the defunct 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.[6] They also question whether he truly is the heir-male of Louis XIV, given the rumours of illegitimacy surrounding Alfonso XII (his great-great-grandfather).[7]

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.[2]

Early life[edit]


Louis Alphonse, Duke of Anjou (2006).

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, Jaime died, and Alfonso then asserted his claim to be Head of the House of Bourbon and Legitimist claimant to the throne of France. As such, he took the title "Duke of Anjou".[8]


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.[9] 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.[9] 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.[9]


Louis Alphonse took his primary studies at College Molière, a bilingual school, where he earned his baccalaureate. In 1991, he was admitted to CUNEF University in Madrid, where he earned a master's degree in international finance. Louis is multilingual, speaking English, Spanish, and French (in addition to some Italian and German).[10]


On 30 January 1989, his father died in a skiing accident near Vail, Colorado. Later, in 1994 Louis Alphonse received 150 million Spanish pesetas from a lawsuit against Vail Associated, which owned the ski resort where the accident occurred.[9] Louis Alphonse was recognised by some members of the Capetian dynasty as Chef de la Maison de Bourbon (Head of the House of Bourbon)[9][11] and took the title Duke of Anjou, but not his father's Spanish dukedom. He is considered the rightful pretender to the defunct French throne by adherents of the Legitimist movement.[9]

Louis Alphonse was elected by the French Society of the Cincinnati as the representative of Louis XVI.[12]

In addition to his Spanish citizenship, Louis Alphonse acquired French nationality through his paternal grandmother, Emmanuelle de Dampierre, also a French citizen.[9] He attended the Lycée Français de Madrid school, obtaining his University Orientation Course (Curso de Orientación Universitaria) qualification in June 1992.[9] He studied economics at the IESE Business School of the University of Navarra. 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 in modern day Slovenia, 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.[13]

In 2021, Louis Alphonse attended the wedding of Grand Duke George Mikhailovich of Russia and his wife in Russia.[14]


Louis Alphonse describes himself as 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.[15] He holds ties to the conservative Spanish political party Vox and is a close friend of its leader, Santiago Abascal.[16]

He is a social conservative and has spoken out against same-sex marriage and same-sex adoption.[17]

In March 2018, Louis Alphonse was named honorary president of the Francisco Franco National Foundation, a position held by his grandmother, Carmen Franco, 1st Duchess of Franco, until her death in December 2017.[18] 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 head of state, his great-grandfather 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 2019, he expressed public support for the Yellow vests movement in France,[19] and later spoke at the World Congress of Families XIII, where he called for return to "Christian society".[20]

Marriage and issue[edit]

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 the Venezuelan capital 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 of Spain, 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".[21]

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, a top-level diplomatic mission of the Holy See, in Paris in June 2007. Her godparents are Prince Charles-Emmanuel of Bourbon-Parma and his wife Constance. French Legitimists recognize her as Eugénie, Madame Royale,[1]: 47  the style commonly attributed to the eldest unmarried daughter of a king of France (in Spain her name is Eugenía de Borbón Vargas).[1]: 47 

The couple had twin sons, Louis and Alphonse, on 28 May 2010 in New York City.[22] Their father has conferred upon them the historic French titles of, respectively, Duke of Burgundy (duc de Bourgogne), and Duke of Berry (duc de Berry). (In Spain, the twins are Don Luis and Don Alfonso de Borbón Vargas).[1]: 47  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.

Their fourth child, Henri, was born on 1 February 2019 in New York and was granted the title Duke of Touraine (duc de Touraine) by his father.[23]


8. Alfonso XIII of Spain
4. Infante Jaime, Duke of Segovia
9. Princess Victoria Eugenie of Battenberg
2. Alfonso, Duke of Anjou and Cádiz
10. Roger de Dampierre, 2nd Duke of San Lorenzo Nuovo
5. Emmanuelle de Dampierre
11. Donna Vittoria Ruspoli dei Principi di Poggio Suasa
1. Louis, Duke of Anjou and Bourbon
12. José María Martínez y Ortega
6. Cristóbal Martínez-Bordiú, 10th Marquis of Villaverde
13. María de la Esperanza Bordiú y Bascarán, 7th Countess of Argillo
3. Carmen Martínez-Bordiú
14. Francisco Franco
7. Carmen Franco, 1st Duchess of Franco
15. Carmen Polo, 1st Lady of Meirás


  1. 1.0 1.1 1.2 1.3 1.4 1.5 1.6 1.7 1.8 Etat présent de la Maison de Bourbon (6th ed.). Paris: Le Léopard d'or. 2020. p. 55. ISBN 9782863772782.
  2. 2.0 2.1 Eilers, Marlene A. Queen Victoria's Descendants. Princess Beatrice. Rosvall Royal Books, Falkoping, Sweden, 1997. pp. 166, 181; ISBN 91-630-5964-9
  3. 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.
  4. 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
  5. Ardisson, Thierry, Louis XX: Contre-enquête sur la monarchie, 1986. ISBN 978-2855653341.
  6. Opfell, Olga S. (2001). Royalty Who Wait: The 21 Heads of Formerly Regnant Houses of Europe. McFarland & Company. ISBN 978-0-7864-0901-3.
  7. Juan Sisinio Pérez Garzón, Isabel II: Los Espejos de la Reina (2004)
  8. 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.
  9. 9.0 9.1 9.2 9.3 9.4 9.5 9.6 9.7 Les Manuscrits du CEDRE V, Le Royaume d'Espagne III. Cercle d'Etudes des Dynasties Royales Europėennes (CEDRE), Paris, 1992, Template:ISSN p. 162-164
  10. Opfell. (2001). Royalty who Wait: The 21 Heads of Formerly Regnant Houses of Europe. p. 16.
  11. Genealogisches Handbuch des Adels, Fürstliche Häuser, Band XV. "Spanien". C.A. Starke Verlag, 1997, p.98. ISBN 3-7980-0814-0.
  12. Bern, Stéphane (28 May 2002). "L'Amérique en pince pour les Bourbons". Le Figaro. Paris.
  13. 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.
  14. Hopkins, Valerie (2 October 2021). "After 100 years, a royal wedding in Russia evokes days of the czars". BDNews.
  15. Match, Paris. "Louis de Bourbon - Les descendants du Roi-Soleil". parismatch.com.
  16. Aanmoen, Oskar (23 September 2019). "Pretender to the French throne 'could soon enter Spanish politics'". royalcentral.co.uk.
  17. "Manifeste de Mgr le duc d'Anjou au sujet du mariage pour tous | Alliance Royale | Le parti politique royaliste". archive.wikiwix.com. Archived from the original on 31 December 2013. Retrieved 22 September 2021.
  18. "Franco legacy: Luis Alfonso de Borbón becomes 'king' of the Franco faithful | In English | EL PAÍS". Archived from the original on 2018-09-20.
  19. 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.
  20. Bourbon, Louis de (17 April 2019). "The Present Battle". Archived from the original on 22 September 2020.
  21. "Emanuela de Dampierre, a cuchillo contra Carmen Martínez-Bordíu". Elsemanaldigital.com. Retrieved 29 November 2011.[permanent dead link]
  22. 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.
  23. "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.


  • 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.

External links[edit]

Website of Louis de bourbon, Duke of Anjou

Louis, Duke of Anjou and Bourbon
Cadet branch of the Capetian dynasty
Born: 25 April 1974
Titles in pretence
Preceded by — TITULAR —
King of France
30 January 1989 – present
Reason for succession failure:
Bourbon monarchy deposed in 1830
Louis, Dauphin of France
This article initially used material from the Wikipedia article Louis Alphonse de Bourbon, 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'.