Sunday, 10 June 2007

Margrethe's & Henrik's 40th wedding anniversary


Today is the 40th wedding anniversary of Queen Margrethe and Prince Henrik, when Margrethe married her Henri and Henri married his Daisy. The then Princess Margrethe was titled 'Tronfølgeren', literally thronefollower in Danish, or Heiress Presumptive in English. Denmark follows the system of primogeniture and so Margethe was never a crown princess. The process to change to the constitution in 1953 allowing Margrethe to follow her father Frederik IX began in 1947, when it became apparent Queen Ingrid would have no more children after the birth of Anne-Marie. As a side note, the Danish Parliament began the process of changing the constitution to introduce equal primogeniture when Mary was pregnant with Christian, so that any future heirs will be the first born, whether male or female. This requires deliberations by two parliaments (the current and the next) and then a referendum. And so, as a constitutional monarchy, the engagement and marriage of Margrethe and Henrik was of great import in Denmark and celebrated as such.

On 10 June 1967, Princess Margrethe, the Heir Apparent to the Danish throne, married Henri Marie Jean André Count de Laborde de Monpezat. Henri's name was Danicised to Henrik and he became HRH Prince Henrik of Denmark, and later still HRH The Prince Consort, as he is known officially now. The wedding ceremony took place in Holmens Kirke (the naval church) and the wedding festivities were held at Fredensborg Palace. You don't need to look too closely to see many parallels, intentionally historical or otherwise, with the wedding of Frederik and Mary in 2004.

Perhaps as a sign of who would always be in the driver's seat in Denmark, officially at least, Princess Margrethe drove to Kastrup Airport in Copenhagen to pick up Henri, who arrived prior to the formal engagement festivities:




The engagement day, 5 October 1966, which included a group photo with the Danish Folketing (parliament) at Fredensborg, a press conference with the newly engaged couple, formal photographs including Henri's parents and one of his sisters and then "the balcony scene" at Amalienborg:




The wedding day at Holmens Kirke, the carriage ride back to Amalienborg, the balcony appearance, at Fredensborg:














As a couple they have lived their lives publicly, but without a strong private relationship, it would have been difficult to sustain not only their own relationship, their family and their duties to Denmark through all these years. They have been through some thick and thin together, for example, Margrethe's medical emergency giving birth to Frederik when Henrik feared for her survival, deaths in their families, relentless royal duties, no doubt the normal parental worries about their children, and also many good times, if the photographic record is any guide. This evening we will see them with many family members at a memorial for Queen Ingrid. We wish them many more happy years together.





Their first wedding anniversary at Fredensborg:



They are greeted by a morning song at Fredensborg on their silver anniversary:



A special thanks to POLFOTO for their archive of Danish royal family photographs.

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2 Comments:

Blogger Irma said...

Dear Danish Royal Watchers. Thank you for a wonderful selection of photographs of the life of Queen Margrethe and Prince Henrik. Looking through the photos one thing stands out clear always - they loved, and still love one another, very much right from the beginning. You can see it in the way they look at each other! A match like this makes for a strong bond, almost a stronghold against the battering life gives you.

I am a stranger, from South Africa, to you country, but I wish HM and HRH and their family many more wonderful (with all it's twists) years!!!

From : Mrs Irma Logan, South Africa
email : irmal55@gmail.com

12:37 am  
Blogger lotte said...

Hi Irma,

Sorry to have missed your comment.
I think we are agreed!

Best wishes

lotte :)

2:04 pm  

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