Anthony Ramos Discovers He's a Secret 'Prince' Thanks to “Finding Your Roots”

The actor learns in the newest episode of the PBS docuseries that one of his ancestors was royalty

<p>Aaron J. Thornton/Getty</p> Anthony Ramos in Las Vegas in February.

Aaron J. Thornton/Getty

Anthony Ramos in Las Vegas in February.

It’s not everyday one learns they’re descended from actual royalty, but that’s what happens to Anthony Ramos on Finding Your Roots.

During this week’s episode of the popular PBS docuseries, Henry Louis Gates, Jr. revealed to the actor that Ramos’ 15th great grandfather, a Guanche enslaved man named Andrés de Llerena, eventually married Maria de Lugo, whose father was king of the Indigenous people of Tenerife, the largest of Spain's Canary Islands. A statue of Ramos' royal ancestor still stands on Tenerife to this day.

“Do you ever feel like a prince?” asked Gates.

“Yo ma, you hear that? I’m a prince,” Ramos quipped. “My dog’s name is ‘Prince.'”

“The man was ripped, I'm not gonna lie,” he continued. “He was in good shape. Some good genes hopefully. You know what I'm saying? Could put some pants on. Wow.”

Related: Maya Rudolph's Shocking Discovery About Her Slave Ancestors on 'Finding Your Roots' : 'I Just Think of My Daughter'

<p>Peter Schickert/Getty</p> A statue of Anthony Ramos' royal ancestor still stands on Tenerife.

Peter Schickert/Getty

A statue of Anthony Ramos' royal ancestor still stands on Tenerife.

When Gates explains his royal ancestor lived on Tenerife “long before” the Spaniards conquered the island in 1496, Ramos expressed disbelief.

“That's unbelievable,” he said, adding, “That’s so crazy. Definitely didn't feel that way in Bushwick.”

Elsewhere in the episode, Gates discussed de Llerena’s enslavement further. Although researchers couldn't deduce how or how long he was enslaved, the Harvard professor said that they “believe it was for at least 10 years.”

“That’s a long time to be a slave, man,” the In the Heights star said.

The Guanches were aborigines of the Canary Islands. According to Owlcation, the Spaniards began their invasion of the islands at the beginning of the 15th century. After Tenerife — the last island to be conquered — fell to Spain, the conquerors dispersed the Guanche population across the world as slaves.

Related: Sunny Hostin Learns Her Ancestors 'Likely' Owned Slaves on Finding Your Roots

<p>Theo Wargo/WireImage</p> Anthony Ramos in 'Hamilton' in February 2016.

Theo Wargo/WireImage

Anthony Ramos in 'Hamilton' in February 2016.

Ramos has proudly touted his heritage since his breakthrough on Broadway. During a 2021 interview with The Hollywood Reporter, the actor recalled being told to disguise his ethnic identity to not “be in the ‘Latino box.’” When Hamilton won a Grammy for Best Musical Theater Album in 2016, Ramos stood next to creator Lin-Manuel Miranda waving a Puerto Rican flag.

Ahead of a 2022 NFL campaign for Latin Heritage Month, Ramos told PEOPLE that “it's important to celebrate [Latino culture] because it's also remembering and paying respect and homage to our ancestors that came before us.” He emphasized the necessity of spotlighting “la cultural.”

“That's the DNA inside of us," he said. "That's the thing that gets us moving... it's that flavor."

For his next project, Ramos will star in a Bob the Builder movie produced by Jennifer Lopez. A press release stated that the film intends to “​​celebrate the vibrant and colorful textures of the Caribbean Latin nations and their people.”

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Finding Your Roots’ next episode airs Tuesday, April 2 at 8:00 p.m. ET on PBS.

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