King Alfonso XIII of Spain - could he really not recognise the national anthem?

I came across one of those trivia facts last night:

Does anyone know whether this was really true? Is it possible for a person to be that tone-deaf?

No takers?

Well, considering that the dates are all wrong, I don’t think the rest of the quote would be accurate.

The dates add together Alfonso XII and Alfonso XIII.

Well, Alfonso XIII never stood up for the national anthem when he was first made king – he was a posthumous heir of his father, and on the throne from birth. No idea about the tonedeafness though.

No, those are the right regnal dates, although it includes his childhood, when his mother was regent.

In The Spanish Bourbons: The History of a Tenacious Dynasty, John Bergamini discusses Alfonso’s personality in some detail and notes that he wasn’t much of a patron of music but was “quite fond of military marches”. No comment about tone-deafness one way or the other.

You’re right, my bad. Sorry.

Thanks for that. A fondness for military marches doesn’t really seem consistent with such a degree of tone-deafness that he wasn’t able to recognise his own national anthem. I assume this was just another of those made-up internet facts.