The “Plaza de la Reina” (Queen's Square) in Valencia was dedicated to what queen of Spain?
The "Plaza de la Reina" (Queen's Square) in Valencia, Spain, is dedicated to Queen Maria de las Mercedes de Orleans, the first wife of King Alfonso XII. The square's correct and full name is "Plaza de la Reina María de las Mercedes".
On 23 January 1878, the day of their wedding, the City Council authorized the demolition of the Convent of St. Tecla and the blocks opposite to the Gate of the Irons of the Cathedral (“Puertas de los Hierros de la Catedral”) and ordered the construction of a large square.
The royal marriage lasted less than six months. Maria de las Mercedes succumbed to typhoid fever and died in Madrid two days after her 18th birthday, on 26 June 1878.
During the Republic (1931-1939), it was called: “Plaza de la Region Valenciana” (Valencian Region Square) and for a very brief period, also during the Republic, “Plaza de Zaragoza” (Zaragoza's Square). Since Valencians kept on referring to the square as the “Queen's Square”, the City Council reverted to its original name.
In 1959, the first fountain was installed in the square and in 1970, underground parking was offered to the city. In the photo, the Cathedral of Valencia and the "Miguelete" Bell Tower can be seen in the background.