Spanish version

Plaza de Isabel II

Plaza Isabel IIAt the end of  Calle de Arenal we find  Plaza de Isabel II. On the opposite side isIsabel II Statue the Teatro Real (Royal Theater), probably the most important building in this square. The Teatro Royal is the Opera Theater of Madrid.

In the middle of  Plaza de Isabel II we can see a statue dedicated to the Queen Isabel II.

She was the daughter of Fernando VII.

In order to make her a possible successor Fernando VII abolished the Salic Laws (in which only sons could be kings). His brother Carlos was against this and proclaimed himself Carlos V. This was the beginning of several wars betweeen those in favour of Isabel II and those who supported Carlos V.

Royal TheaterIsabel was proclaimed Queen when she was 13 years old and one of her first worries was to find a husband. Finally Francisco Francisco de Asis de Borbon y Borbonde Asis de Borbon y Borbon was the chosen suitor. They had 11 children but only urvived. The interesting thing is that Francisco de Asis was homosexual and he was probably not the father of any of them.
The reign of Isabel II was full of changes. A new Constitution (1845) came into force and battles between the different polital groups to obtain more power even tried to dethrone her.
Although it was a time of crisis, it was also a time of developments (railways changed communications, the Stock Exchange Law came into force, also the Penal Code and the Guardia Civil was created...).
Isabel II It was a time of decadence for Spain in the world, that had already started durign the reigns of Carlos IV and Fernando VII.
In 1868 the Queen was sent into exile to France. She divorced her husband and she abdicated  in favour of her son Alfonso XII. After six years she came back to Spain but due to problems with her son and later with his widow, Maria Cristina de Habsburgo-Lorena, she left again. Eventually she died in Paris in 1904.
She was quite popular among the people because of her open character.
She had many lovers and used to meet them at Lhardy´s, where she frecuently had dinner in a private room.

@Copyright 2008, 2009 Mª Dolores Diehl Busch. All rights reserved.
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