While Tom Hanks and wife Rita Wilson were the first celebrities to go public with their coronavirus results, it’s now been revealed that the disease has infected a European royal. Karl von Habsburg, the Archduke of Austria, has been diagnosed with COVID-19 and is now being quarantined. The 59-year-old, who is the head of the House of Habsburg-Lorraine, confirmed the news in a phone call on the Austrian TV channel oe24.
"It's annoying, but I'm fine. It's not the black plague," he said. "I thought it was the usual flu. When a friend called me that he had a positive test at a congress in Switzerland, I was also tested." Karl also praised Austrian authorities for acting “with measure and goal.” He added, “Panic is not brought in.”
Fellow European royals, Queen Letizia and King Felipe of Spain, were tested for the coronavirus on Thursday, March 12. In a statement, the Royal House said (via HOLA!), “Based on the recent public activities of HM the Queen and the information transmitted by the Government, as a preventive measure indicated by the health authorities, Their Majesties the Kings have carried out the corresponding COVID detection test throughout this morning 19. The results of these tests will be publicly communicated. Thank you.”
Last week, Princess Leonor and Infanta Sofia’s mother stepped out with the Minister of Equality of Spain, Irene Montero, who revealed on Thursday that she tested positive for COVID-19. Letizia was also recently at an event with Irene’s partner Pablo Iglesias Turrión, who has also been tested and is being quarantined.
The coronavirus outbreak has led to the cancelation and postponement of several royal events, including the Monaco royal family’s annual Rose Ball and Queen Mathilde of Belgium’s state visit to Italy. Per CNN, COVID-19 has infected more than 108,000 around the world. According to the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention, the coronavirus is thought to spread mainly from person-to-person.