King Alexander

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Alexander, King of the Hellenes was the second-born son of King Constantine I of Greece who reigned from June 1917, when his father and elder brother - later King George II of Greece - were forced into exile, until October 25, 1920 when he died from gangrene acquired as the result of a monkey's bite.

Alexander was born on August 1 (July 20 OS), 1893 at Tatoi, the son of then-Crown Prince Constantine and Princess Sophie. He studied at the Greek Military Academy, graduating in 1912. He saw action during the Balkan Wars (1912-1913) as an artillery officer.

On June 12 (May 30 OS), 1917, he became King of Greece in place of his father who was driven out of the country by the Entente allies as he refused to approve the country's entry into World War I. Alexander's reign coincided with the Greek occupation of Asia Minor following the first World War.

The young monarch became popular with his army by visiting Eastern Thrace. Later, and despite advice to the contrary, he landed in Artaki, Asia Minor and also visited Panormos where he personally raised the Greek flag on the local town hall.

King Alexander was also reconciled with PM Eleftherios Venizelos whom his father vehemently opposed.

He was married on November 17, 1919, in Athens, in total secrecy, to Aspasia Manou (1896 - 1972), a commoner. The marriage was not revealed to the public until late 1920 - after his death - though the relationship caused a scandal in 1919, forcing the couple into temporary exile. Their only child, Alexandra of Greece, was born after his death. She later married King Peter II of Yugoslavia.

Preceded by:
King Constantine I
Royal COA of Greek Kingdom.png
King of the Hellenes

Succeeded by:
King Constantine I