The Jordanian monarch turns 56 today, and his family are marking the occasion with heartfelt messages.

He’s the king of Jordan, a passionate public speaker, and a devoted family man. (Want proof of that last one? Click here).

And Abdullah II bin Al-Hussein celebrates his birthday this week, turning 55 years old on January 30.

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His family have already started sharing heartwarming messages to the royal to mark the occasion, including his eldest child, Crown Prince Hussein.

“We celebrate a father and a leader,” the 23-year-old wrote alongside an image of he and his father.

To mark his birthday here at Emirates Woman, we’ve put together 10 facts about one of our favourite modern royals.

1. He met his wife, Queen Rania, at a dinner party in 1992

The couple announced their engagement six months later, before tying the knot on 10 June 1993. They’ve since welcomed four children; Crown Prince Hussein, Princess Iman, Princess Salma and Prince Hashem.

2. He’s got a prestigious military background

The king, who has reigned since 1999, trained at the UK’s Royal Military Academy Sandhurst, the same military school attended by his son, Crown Prince Hussein.

3. He assumed command of Jordan’s Special Forces as brigadier general in 1994

King Abdullah II also became a major general in 1998.

4. He is a descendant of the house of Hashemite.

King Abdullah II is the eldest son of the late King Hussein.

5. He’s a real-life hero

The Jordanian ruler made headlines last year after rushing to help extinguish a fire that had taken hold near his palace. Luckily, no one was injured in the blaze,

6. Though he started school in Amman, he went on to continue his education at St Edmund’s School in the UK

The royal later attended high school in the US.

7. King Abdullah II also studied Middle Eastern affairs at Oxford University

He completed a one-year course before heading back to Jordan to join the army.

8. He made a cameo appearance in Star Trek: Voyager in 1995

According to the BBC, the royal is an avid fan of the sci-fi TV show.

9. He is a qualified diver and helicopter pilot

And also lists motorcycling and skydiving as hobbies (although he told Discovery Channel travel host Peter Greenberg he is not allowed to enjoy the latter since becoming king).

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10. King Abdullah II penned an autobiography that was released in 2010

It’s called Our Last Best Chance: The Pursuit of Peace in a Time of Peril, and focuses on his early life and political history.

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Images: Crown Prince Hussein/Instagram, Royal Hashemite Court/Instagram