Carlos, Duke of Madrid

Don Carlos, Duke of Madrid (Spanish: Carlos María de los Dolores Juan Isidro José Francisco Quirico Antonio Miguel Gabriel Rafael; 30 March 1848 – 18 July 1909) was the senior member of the House of Bourbon from 1887 until his death. He was the Carlist claimant to the throne of Spain under the name Carlos VII from 1868 (his father's Spanish abdication), and the Legitimist claimant to the throne of France under the name Charles XI after the death of his father in 1887.

Infante Carlos
Duke of Madrid
Carlos Duke of Madrid.jpg
Carlist pretender to the Spanish throne
as Carlos VII
Pretendence3 October 1868 – 18 July 1909
PredecessorJuan III
SuccessorJaime III
Legitimist pretender to the French throne
as Charles XI
Pretendence21 November 1887 – 18 July 1909
PredecessorJean III
SuccessorJacques I
Born(1848-03-30)30 March 1848
Ljubljana, Carniola
Died18 July 1909(1909-07-18) (aged 61)
Varese, Italy
Berthe de Rohan
(m. 1894)
IssueInfanta Blanca
Jaime, Duke of Madrid
Infanta Elvira
Infanta Beatriz
Infanta Alicia
FatherJuan, Count of Montizón
MotherArchduchess Maria Beatrix of Austria-Este


coin of Carlos VII

Carlos was born in Ljubljana, the capital of Carniola in what is now Slovenia, the elder son of Juan, Count of Montizón and of his wife Archduchess Maria Beatrix of Austria-Este. His name in full was Carlos María de los Dolores Juan Isidro José Francisco, Quirico Antonio Miguel Gabriel Rafael. As an infant he lived with his family briefly in London where his younger brother Alfonso was born. After their father, considered too liberal for Carlist tastes, left their mother, the boys lived with her in Modena. Her brother Duke Francis V of Modena was largely responsible for the education of the boys and was the chief influence in their early lives. Carlos was known for his traditionalist views, much different from those of his father.


On 4 February 1867, at Frohsdorf in Austria, Carlos married Princess Margherita of Bourbon-Parma, daughter of Duke Charles III of Parma and of his wife, Louise Marie Thérèse of France.[1] The couple had five children:

De facto kingEdit

Carlos organized and led the Third Carlist War. Between 1872 and 1876 he effectively ruled much of peninsular Spain, having as much legitimacy as the Presidents of the First Republic.[1]

Carlos VII, de facto King of Spain

Later lifeEdit

In January 1893 Carlos' wife, Margarita, died. The following year he decided to remarry. He consulted his mother who suggested two ladies: Princess Theresia of Liechtenstein (daughter of Prince Alfred of Liechtenstein) and Berthe de Rohan (daughter of Prince Arthur de Rohan).

Having met both ladies, Carlos decided on the latter and asked for her hand in marriage.[2]

On 28 April 1894 Carlos and Berthe were married by Cardinal Schönborn in his private chapel in Prague. Berthe had a dominant personality, making the marriage very unpopular among Carlists. "All writers agree that this second marriage was disastrous, not only for the family of Don Carlos and for [Carlos] himself, but also for the [Carlist] party."[3]

Carlos died in Varese in 1909. [1] He is buried in the Cathedral of San Giusto in Trieste. He was succeeded in his Spanish and French claims by his son Jaime.



  1. ^ a b c Chisholm 1911.
  2. ^ Jaime Del Burgo, Carlos VII y su tiempo: Leyenda y realidad (Pamplona: Gobierno de Navarra, 1994), 340.
  3. ^ Del Burgo, 341


  • Del Burgo, Jaime. Carlos VII y su tiempo: Leyenda y realidad. Pamplona: Gobierno de Navarra, 1994.
  • "The Curé Santa Cruz and the Carlist War." Blackwood's Edinburgh Magazine (1873).
  • "The Spanish Pretender: Who he is and What he has Been." The New York Times (May 31, 1874).
  • Chisholm, Hugh, ed. (1911). "Carlos, Don (Prince of Bourbon)" . Encyclopædia Britannica. 5 (11th ed.). Cambridge University Press.
Carlos, Duke of Madrid
Cadet branch of the Capetian dynasty
Born: March 30, 1848 Died: July 18, 1909
Titles in pretence
Preceded by
Juan, Count of Montizón
as Juan III of Spain and
Jean III of France
King of Spain
October 3, 1868 – July 18, 1909
Succeeded by
Jaime, Duke of Madrid
as Jaime III of Spain and
Jacques I of France
King of France and Navarre
November 21, 1887 – July 18, 1909