Talal of Jordan

Talal
Talal of Jordan.jpg
Talal in 1951
King of Jordan
Reign20 July 1951 – 11 August 1952
Coronation20 July 1951
PredecessorAbdullah I
SuccessorHussein
Prime Ministers
Born(1909-02-26)26 February 1909
Mecca, Ottoman Empire
Died7 July 1972(1972-07-07) (aged 63)
Istanbul, Turkey
Burial7 July 1972
Raghadan Palace, Jordan
Spouse
Zein Al-Sharaf (m. 1934)
IssueHussein
Prince Muhammad
Prince Hassan
Princess Basma
Full name
Talal bin Abdullah bin Hussein bin Ali
HouseHashemite
FatherAbdullah I of Jordan
MotherMusbah bint Nasser
ReligionSunni Islam

Talal bin Abdullah (Arabic: طلال بن عبد الله‎, Ṭalāl ibn ʿAbdullāh; 26 February 1909 – 7 July 1972) was King of Jordan from the assassination of his father, King Abdullah I, on 20 July 1951, until he was forced to abdicate by Parliament on 11 August 1952. According to Talal, he was a 39th-generation direct descendant of Muhammad as he belongs to the Hashemite family—who have ruled Jordan since 1921.

He was born in Mecca as the eldest child of Abdullah and his wife Musbah bint Nasser. Abdullah was the son of Hussein bin Ali, the Sharif of Mecca. Sharif Hussein led the Great Arab Revolt against the Ottoman Empire in 1916; after removing Ottoman rule, Abdullah established the Emirate of Transjordan in 1921, a British Protectorate, for which he was Emir. During Abdullah's absence, Talal spent his early years alone with his mother. Talal received private education in Amman, later joining Transjordan's Arab Legion as second lieutenant in 1927. He then became aide to his grandfather Sharif Hussein, the ousted King of the Hejaz, during his exile in Cyprus. By 1948, Talal became a general in the Army.

Abdullah sought independence in 1946, and the Emirate became the Hashemite Kingdom of Jordan. Talal became Crown Prince upon his father's designation as King of Jordan. Abdullah was assassinated in Jerusalem in 1951, and Talal became King. Talal's most revered achievement as King is the establishment of Jordan's modern constitution in 1952, rendering his kingdom as a constitutional monarchy. He ruled for less than thirteen months until he was forced to abdicate due to mental illness—reported as schizophrenia. Talal spent the rest of his life at a sanatorium in Istanbul and died there on 7 July 1972. He was succeeded by his oldest son Hussein.[1]

Early life

He was born in Mecca as the eldest child of Abdullah, an Arab deputy of Mecca in the Ottoman Parliament, and his wife Musbah bint Nasser. Abdullah was the son of Hussein bin Ali, Sharif of Mecca, traditional steward of the holy cities of Mecca and Medina. Sharif Hussein and his sons led the Great Arab Revolt against the Ottoman Empire in 1916; after removing Ottoman rule, the Sharif's sons established Arab monarchies in place. Abdullah established the Emirate of Transjordan in 1921, a British Protectorate, for which he was Emir. During Abdullah's absence, Talal spent his early years alone with his mother. Talal received private education in Amman, later joining Transjordan's Arab Legion as second lieutenant in 1927. He then became aide to his grandfather Sharif Hussein, the ousted King of the Hejaz, during his exile in Cyprus. By 1948, Talal became a general in the Army.[2]

He was educated privately before attending the British Army's Royal Military College, Sandhurst, from which he graduated in 1929 when he was commissioned as a second lieutenant in the Cavalry Regiment of the Arab Legion. His regiment was attached to a British regiment in Jerusalem and also to the Royal Artillery in Baghdad.[3]

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