ABC was first published in Madrid on 1 January 1903 by Torcuato Luca de Tena y Álvarez-Ossorio. The founding publishing house was Prensa Española, which was led by the founder of the paper, Luca de Tena. The paper started as a weekly newspaper, turning daily in June 1905. In 1928 ABC had two editions, one for Madrid and the other for Sevilla. The latter was named ABC de Sevilla.
ABC publishes in compact-sized stapled sheets, noticeably smaller than the loose tabloid format favoured by most Spanish dailies, including El País and El Mundo. Its cover distinctively features a full-size picture.
ABC is known for generally supporting conservative political views and defending the Spanish monarchy. The paper has also a right-wing stance. Its director since 1983, Luis María Ansón, left the paper in 1997 to found another daily, La Razón, which initially catered to even more conservative readers.
Historically, it was noted in its heavy use of photography, and the front page is typically a large photo taking up to one third of the area. Recently, it has been recognized for its coverage of Spanish culture and arts.
On 25 September 2009, ABC made its complete archives, dating back to 1903, available online, giving modern readers a chance to see contemporaneous news about the Spanish Civil War or Francisco Franco's death.
Circulation and readership
In February 1970 ABC had a circulation of 212,536 copies. It was 178,979 copies in February 1975, 171,382 copies in 1976, 145,162 copies in 1977 and 126,952 copies in 1978. The circulation of the paper was 135,380 copies in February 1980.
The 1993 circulation of ABC was 334,317 copies, making it the second best selling newspaper in Spain. In 1994 it was again the second best selling newspaper in the country with a circulation of 321,571 copies. In the period of 1995–1996 the paper had a circulation of 321,573 copies, making again it the second best-selling paper in the country.
The circulation of ABC was 292,000 copies in 2001 and 262,874 copies in 2002. The paper had a circulation of 263,000 copies in 2003, being the fourth best-selling newspaper in the country. Based on the findings of the European Business Readership Survey ABC had 5,685 readers per issue in 2006. Between June 2006 and July 2007 the daily had a circulation of 230,422 copies. The 2008 circulation of the paper was 228,258 copies. It was 243,154 copies between July 2010 and June 2011.
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^Richard Gunther; Jose Ramon Montero; Jose Ignacio Wert (2000). "The media and politics in Spain". In Richard Gunther; Anthony Mughan (eds.). Democracy and the Media: A Comparative Perspective. Cambridge University Press. Retrieved 27 November 2014.