Video: Spain’s Queen Letizia clashes with mother-in-law at Easter mass

Camera captures moment when queen tries to block a photo of her daughters with their grandmother

Letizia and Sofía spar over the children at Easter mass.Photo: atlas
More information
How the relationship between the two queens of Spain started to sour

A video recorded inside Palma de Mallorca cathedral at the end of Easter Sunday mass has captured tension within the Spanish royal family.

In the video, Queen Sofía  – the mother of King Felipe VI – gets ready to pose for a photo with her grandchildren, 10-year-old Infanta Sofía and 12-year-old Leonor, princess of Asturias. But just as the photographer is about to snap the image, Queen Letizia walks in front of all three, blocking the view. Letizia then tries to take her mother-in-law’s hand off Infanta Sofía before the group breaks apart.

In public, Queen Letizia has always shown her appreciation for her mother-in-law’s support

King Felipe VI, seeing the scene, approaches his wife and mother and exchanges words with both. His father Juan Carlos I meanwhile looks on in puzzlement. After the incident, the royal family leaves the cathedral and poses for photos for the media. The video was shared by the Twitter account El Rabillo del OjO (@rabillodelojo) and has since gone viral.

For Juan Carlos I, it was his first Easter Sunday mass since he handed over the crown to his son in 2014. It was also one of the few occasions when Sofía and Leonor, who are typically kept away from the spotlight by their parents, appeared in public.

Both children were visibly absent from a Tuesday mass at El Escorial, held in memory of Felipe VI's grandfather, Don Juan, who died 25 years ago without ever accessing the throne. The girls were also absent from the first state tribute to Don Juan in the Royal Palace in Madrid on June 20, 2013.

In public, Queen Letizia has always shown her appreciation for her mother-in-law’s support. Letizia thanked Sofìa on the day of her engagement to Felipe, and also after Juan Carlos I ceded the throne to his son.

Sofía meanwhile is devoted to her grandchildren, and upset that she does not get to see them more often. Sofía has boasted about how much Leonor looks like her, and once produced a photograph of herself as a child to prove it.

English version by Melissa Kitson.


More information

Archived In

Recomendaciones EL PAÍS
Recomendaciones EL PAÍS