Wedding of Juan Carlos and Sofia of Spain, 1962

Happy Wedding Anniversary to King Juan Carlos and Queen Sofia of Spain, who got married in Athens on this day 55 years ago. The wedding between the then exiled Infante Juan Carlos of Spain and Princess Sofia of Greece brought together the biggest gathering of royalty (exiled and reigning) since the wedding of Queen Elizabeth II in 1947, and had multiple lavish events. The couple have three children, King Felipe, Infanta Elena, and Infanta Cristina, and eventually succeeded to the Spanish Throne in 1975, ruling until he abdicated in 2014. On May 14, 1962 itself, there were two religious ceremonies, a Catholic one, and an Orthodox one. Take a look at scenes from their wedding below-

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The Catholic Ceremony was held at the Cathedral of St. Denis at 10 am, where the groom was addressed in Spanish and the bride in Greek.

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The Orthodox Ceremony was held at the Metropolitan Cathedral of the Virgin Mary at noon.

After the ceremony, Princess Sofia threw her wedding bouquet, which was caught by Princess Anne Marie of Denmark, who eventually married Sofia’s brother, King Constantine, in 1964.

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The Bride and groom rode back to the Royal Palace of Athens in the 1908 blue and gilt coach, waving to the estimated 1 million spectators who lined the route.

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Princess Sofia wore a gown of silver lame covered in layers of heirloom Bruges lace and tulle with a fifteen feet veil of heirloom Bruges lace, worn by Queen Frederica at her wedding. She topped the whole look with the Prussian Diamond Tiara, which was her wedding gift from her mother. Prince Juan Carlos wore the olive green Spanish army uniform. Among the bridesmaids were Princess Anne of Orléans, Princesses Benedikte and Anne-Marie of Denmark, Princess Tatiana Radziwiłł, Princess Alexandra of Kent, Princess Irene of the Netherlands, Infanta Pilar of Spain, and Princess Irene of Greece.

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Among the wedding guests were King Olav V of Norway, Queen Ingrid of Denmark, Prince Rainier III and Princess Grace of Monaco, Queen Juliana and Prince Bernhard of the Netherlands, King Umberto II and Queen Marie-Jose of Italy, King Michael and Queen Anne of Romania, Prince Franz Josef II and Princess Gina of Liechtenstein, Grand Duke Jean and Grand Duchess Josephine Charlotte of Luxembourg, Count and Countess of Paris, Queen Helen of Romania, Queen Victoria Eugenie (Ena) of of Spain, Lord Mountbatten of Burma, Duke of Calabria, Prince Amadeo, Duke of Aosta, Prince Philip of Hesse, Princess Marina, Duchess of Kent, Princess Irene of Greece, Duchess of AostaPrincess Margarita of Hohenlohe-Langenburg, Princess Theodora, Margravine of Baden Princess Sophie of Hanover, Princess Paul of Yugoslavia, and Princess Eugenie of Greece.

(Click on highlighted / underlined links above to get to a page on that person)

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