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On Tuesday, October 31, Leonor, Princess of Asturias, will turn eighteen. On this day, she will swear an oath to the Spanish constitution, a highly symbolic and important event in Spanish royal life.
Every step has been carefully planned, and every moment has a deep meaning. Nothing is left to chance. Spanish people want their royal family to place sacrifice and humility above all other facets of royal activities.
On Tuesday, Felipe, Letizia, Leonor and Sofia will travel from the Palace of Zarzuela to the Palacio de las Cortes, where the Spanish Congress of Deputies meets. They will enter the Queen’s Vestibule, where a statue of Isabella II and a table made of fine wood are located. That is where the Constitution of 1812 was signed. Next, they’ll proceed to the Lost Steps vestibule where the Princess will greet the president of the Congress and the president of the Senate. It’s called like that because here, our deputies waited for their turn to get into the hall to deliver their speeches and they used to pace up and down the vestibule, thus “lost steps”. The paintings are allegorical and depcit the rivers of Spain, regions and old kingdoms. On the ceiling, there are 4 ladies: Law, Justice, Religion and Abundance.
Palacio de la Cortes (Wikimedia Commons)
The family will then proceed into the session hall and climb up the stage. Leonor will swear in front of a tapestry with the national coat of arms, made of wool, gold and silver, and under the watchful eyes of two statues from 1862: Isabella I and Ferdinand, the Catholic Monarchs. There are two massive paintings. Queen Maria of Molina (see our post on her here) begging the Courts of Valladolid to protect her son, the future king Ferdinand II, and the other representing a session of the Courts of Cadiz writing the 1812 constitution. On top of them, there 4 caryatids symbolising science, commerce, navy and agriculture.
After the oath, the family will parade through Madrid with the royal guard on the return to the Royal Palace. An official reception will be held for authorities, cultural figures, scientists, presidents of charities and some young people invited by Leonor that are the best students of their promotion, presidents of young people associations and NGOs. There will be a lunch, and King Felipe will give Princess Leonor the royal order of Carlos III in the very same room where King Carlos III lived and died, his old bedroom.
Royal Order of Carlos III (Wikimedia Commons)
In the evening, there will be a private party at El Pardo Palace, where King Felipe and Queen Letizia held their pre-wedding dinner. There’ll be a concert for Madrid citizens in the evening at El Retiro Park and at Puerta del Sol, the headquarters of the Madrid region president, they’ll give cake for free: a layer of almond sponge cake with custard and whipped cream mixed and raspberry and lemon jam on top to copy the Spanish flag.
The Princess of Asturias chose a white suit from Sastrería Serna, which made an impact from a distance and up close. Her shoes from are from Lodi and she wore new earrings from Gold & Roses.
Infanta Sofia rented a printed and caped dress from a Spanish company, Borow. The design is believed to be by Erdem.
Queen Letizia chose a blue dress with embellished shoulders, pairing it with her Bulgari earrings. Her dress is a rewear by Carolina Herrera, first seen during the state visit to Germany in 2022. Regal Fille has a nice post about that visit and information on the dress here.
Reception and Speech
From today I owe myself to all Spaniards, whom I will serve at all times with respect and loyalty. There is no greater pride. On this important day -which I will always remember with emotion- I ask you to place your trust in me, just as I place all my trust in our future, in the future of Spain.
Thank you very much.Leonor, Princess of Asturias