Danish Royal Watchers

Friday 27 April 2007

Frederik presents Research Communication Prize 2007

Along with the celebration of the return of the Galathea 3, today Crown Prince Frederik has awarded the Research Communication Prize for 2007. Normally Crown Princess Mary would make this award as it is her patronage, but as Mary is on maternity leave, Frederik is standing in for her this year. This year the Research Prize was presented onboard the Vædderen in honour of its own scientific endeavours, to Professor Ole Mouritzen of Syddansk University for molecular research. The prize is valued at 100,000 DKk and helps to empahasise the objective of the Galathea 3 expedition to encourage scientific research as a career path for young people. (thanks Janne!)

Crown Prince Frederik's speech (in Danish)
Research Festival
press release about the award from the Ministry of Science, Technology and Innovation
The Copenhagen Post 'Galathea's floating social experiment'
Added: TV2 reported that Frederik began his speech by giving greetings from his daughter "who says she needs her mother today and who unfortunately could not be here today - but she has confidence in me as a replacement for my wife". This is a reference to the Research Prize being Mary's patronage.

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Christening of Lillepigen July 1

Today Per Thornit, Chief of Court for the Crown Prince Couple, announced the christening of Mary's and Frederik's new baby girl for July 1 at Fredensborg Palace Chapel. The Fredensborg Palace Chapel is literally a short walk from the front door of home to the local church. Built by Frederik IV between 1719 and 1726 as part of the palace, it is opposite The Chancellery House (on the bottom right in the first photo below, it looks directly across to the Chapel). The main building was inaugurated in 1722 and the chapel in 1726.

Churches are places where the sad and the happy are marked, and so here is a little bit of history of recent family connections to the chapel. It is the chapel where Prince Nikolai was christened on 6 November 1999 - he was christened Nikolai William Alexander Frederik. Queen Margrethe maintains the custom of services being held in the Palace Chapel on most Sundays and holidays throughout the year and all services are open to the public (although not the christening obviously). Princess Benedikte married Prince Richard zu Sayn-Wittgenstein-Berleburg in the Chapel on 3 February 1968. And, although Frederik was christened in Holmens Kirke (Naval Church of Holmen) in Copenhagen on 24 June 1968, he was confirmed in Fredensborg Palace Chapel on 28 May 1981.

Fredensborg Palace Chapel also has another place in the royal family's history: it was the initial resting place for Queen Ingrid after she died on 7 November 2000, and before her casket was taken to Christiansborg Palace Chapel in Copenhagen (where Christian was christened) to lie in castrum dolorum the next day. After Queen Ingrid's death around 4.30pm, her coffin was covered with her royal standard and was carried by her six grandsons (Frederik, Joachim, Gustav, Pavlos, Nikolaos and Philippos) and her grandaughters' husbands Jefferson-Friedrich Count von Pfeil und Klein-Ellguth (Alexandra S-W-B) and Carlos Morales (Alexia) from The Chancellery House to the Chapel. Queen Margrethe, Princess Benedikte and Queen Anne-Marie and all the other family members followed while members of the court lined the procession bearing lit torches. Afterwards there was a private ceremony held in the chapel.

1. The announcement 2. view of Fredensborg Palace with the Chapel on the top right 3. view from the lake side of Fredensborg Palace with the Chapel on the left 4. views from inside the chapel

1. & 2. Princess Benedikte's wedding 3. Prince Nikolai's christening, and, notice the christening font is the same used for all the royal family and no doubt will be again

1. to 6. The family procession from The Chancellery House to the Chapel after the death of Queen Ingrid on 7 November 2000 7. & 8. Queen Ingrid's casket in the Chapel before it was taken to Christiansborg Palace Chapel the next day for the castrum dolorus and then to her final resting place out in the air with Frederik IX at Roskilde Cathedral (photos: POLFOTO)

See map of Fredensborg Palace and Gardens (in pdf)

DR video clip (0:25)

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Thursday 26 April 2007

Frederik opens Galathea Exhibition

Today Crown Prince Frederik has been at the University of Copenhagen's Zoological Museum as patron, for the opening of the Galathea Exhibition.

for more photos visit Galathea 3's gallery

Added: Jyllands Posten video clip

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Wednesday 25 April 2007

Lillepigen update

Some more info - we will bring more from the Danish magazines... Meanwhile we hope Mary is recuperating and everyone is settling into the new change in the family. It seems we will not see formal photos of the new baby, as we did with Christian (for now anyway), which shows the difference between the two babies (one the heir, the other the spare). Mary indicated in the press conference at the hospital that they are calling the baby 'lillepigen', which means 'the little girl' in Danish. The 'g' is imperceptable and soft, so (being Danish!) it doesn't sound anything like its written form.

* Uncle Joachim sent flowers and a teddy bear to Mary and his new niece

* Mary's midwife Birgitte Hillerup is a very experienced royal midwife:

14 September 1999: Count Friedrich Richard Oscar Jefferson von Pfeil und Klein-Ellguth (mother: Princess Alexandra zu Sayn-Wittgenstein-Berleburg, Princess Benedikte is his grandmother)

22 July 2002: Prince Felix Henrik Valdemar Christian (mother: Countess Alexandra)

16 August 2003: Countess Ingrid Alexandra Irma Astrid Benedikte von Pfeil und Klein-Ellguth (mother: Princess Alexandra zu Sayn-Wittgenstein-Berleburg, Princess Benedikte is her grandmother)

15 October 2005: Prince Christian Valdemar Henri John (mother: Crown Princess Mary)

21 April 2007: Lilleprinsesse (mother: Crown Princess Mary)

* Some comments have been made about the new baby appearing a little yellow. A doctor commented on this two days ago and said it was quite normal for babies to be a tad yellow a day or two after their birth until the liver begins working properly. He said with Prince Christian it was a more serious case (Christian was treated with UV lights after birth, including after he left hospital, he returned to spend a night under UV light a day after going home)

* check here to see the bedding sets used by Christian and the new baby according to B.T.

ABC Online Monday, April 23, 2007. 8:28am (AEST) - 'Princess Mary's daughter's name under wraps'
Denmark's Consul-General in Sydney Jorgen Mollengaard has told Channel Nine there is a lot of speculation about what the baby's name will be. "As far as I understand, the baptism will be in the beginning of July and not until then will be revealed what the name will be," he said.

Some of the best of the clips:

TV2 news clip (4:00) - shows the press conference and the wall of jounalists, cameras (!) which confronted Mary as she departed. Here you see Mary is asked if she was given a present [by Frederik] for the birth, and she points at the baby and says she was her present

TV2 News clip (1:30) - leaving hospital and greeting well wishers in Fredensborg

Jyllands Posten webTV Christian with the royal wave down!

TV2 News clip (4:10) - shows reaction to the birth, including Prince Joachim's (he was 'on duty' at an event, but it seems televisions were on everywhere), he says how wondeful it is for little Christian to have a little sister and wonderful too for the family to have the first litle girl since 1946, also shows and Australian chef and Seven Network Sunrise program (with Aussie jokes about the name). For the record, not too many people are cooking kangaroo and crocodile Downunder, it is a niche restaurant "thing"

Seven News clip (1:39) - the Australian bits in the press conference. The mini-Mary was used once by one Danish newspaper, the name which is sticking is 'lillepigen' (little girl). The Danish media has never used 'Kingaroo' for Christian, although the Australian media says they do. The Australian media should just own it and use it as their nickname for Christian if they insist!

Nine News clip (2:00) - another Australian report of the departure from the hospital, includes a few words from B.T. reporter Bodil Cath

(special thanks to jema! and Benedikte! and cph! and santa!)

The Copenhagen Post:

Princess question mark

24 April 2007
The birth of the royal family's first girl in six decades has the kingdom asking a number of questions.

The days when kings and queens dominated European politics are long since past, with most monarchs reduced to figureheads subject to the good graces of democratically elected parliaments. But the birth of the royal family's first daughter since 1946 is now forcing the Danish kingdom to consider the very political question of gender equality, and whether to make a permanent change to the laws of succession for a monarchy that has existed for over 1000 years.

It's a woman's kingdom - for now
Denmark is currently reigned by Queen Margrethe II. Only the second woman to rule over the kingdom as its monarch, her accession to the throne was secured in 1953 as an exception to the Line of Succession Act, which places male heirs in front of their older female relatives.

Up to now, the act, which states that 'the throne is inherited by the king's son or daughter, with the son taking precedence over the daughter', has escaped serious public challenge, thanks to the fact that Queen Margrethe had two sons but no daughters, and that the current Crown Prince's first child was a son.

But before the new princess's big brother Christian was born in October 2005, debate began to emerge about whether a first-born girl would be allowed to inherit the throne. Parliament eventually set into motion the complex machinery such a law change would require.

Once it was announced that the child was a boy, however, the issue fell somewhat by the wayside, as a first-born male was unquestionably the next in line after his father. With the birth of the new princess the issue has been pushed back into the fray.

Time for a change
Even though a majority of MPs - including the prime minister - support giving princesses equal rights to the throne, the procedure is a torturous one. The proposal has already been passed by the current parliament, but it must also be passed by the next, after which it will be sent to a national referendum in which 40 percent of all eligible voters must give their support.

Royal popularity aside, the prospects of such a referendum attracting enough voters to the polls to secure a change is uncertain, unless it were coupled with a second general election. Barring political scandal, the time horizon for two general elections is over ten years.

Nevertheless, prior to Prince Christian's birth, MPs in favour of the change said that even with the long procedure, time was on their side.

'I guarantee that the child the Crown Princess gives birth to will become Denmark's regent,' Birthe Rønn Hornbech, a member of the PM's Liberal party said. 'Before then, the constitution will have been changed.'

A princess's preparation
Even with the law change, there is only an outside chance that the princess will ever reign as monarch. Still, she is close enough to the throne that she would need to be raised as if she will become queen, according to Steffen Heiberg, head of research for the Museum of National History at Frederiksborg Castle.

'The new princess has to be ready, at least until Prince Christian marries and produces an heir.'

Heiberg added that the days when a princess could be expected to wait around for her Prince Charming were over. He suggested Christian's little sister should be prepared for a career path that begins with an education in the stately crafts: politics and the military.

'The requirements for a member of the succession's abilities have become less dependent on gender than in the past. I imagine that a female in the succession line would also have to receive a continuing military education.'

All bets are in
While some have already begun planning the princess's future, one of the most elemental aspects about her has yet to be decided - or at least revealed: her name.

As the proud parents left Copenhagen University Hospital Monday, the crown princess said only that their daughter was called 'Little Girl' for the time being, but that they were considering 'several' names.

Bookmakers are reportedly even odds on Ingrid, the former queen mother, while the queen's own name and Henrietta, the crown princess's mother, are the other leading candidates.

Many experts believe the princess's name will include all of the above, as royals traditionally have four given names. Susanne Vogt of the University of Copenhagen, said, however, that a less traditional name wouldn't be a surprise.

'When it's child number two, then the parents usually get a little more liberal,' Vogt said.

For the time being, however, the dark haired little girl who slept soundly through her first meeting with the press will remain simply the kingdom's Little Girl.The Copenhagen Post
Want to see photos again?

TV2 photo gallery of Frederik meeting the press after the birth. It seems the piece of plastic behind Frederik on the wall was not part of building works but a modern art installation (!) - it was removed by the time lillepigen left hosptital

TV2 photo gallery of Frederik, Mary and lillepigen leaving Rigshospitalet

TV2 photo gallery of the return home to Fredensborg (59 photos). In a few photos - no. 30 on - you can just see John Donaldson waiting inside the house and having a peek through the door

An article from TV2 24 April 2007: Will it be an Ingrid or a Pipaluk?

”What is the name of the child?” will probably be [an] important question [this] year. It is a question to be asked by the bishop of Copenhagen, Erik Norman Svendsen, and unless Her Royal Highness Princess No Name of Denmark decides to make some noise [in that moment at the christening], it will be very quiet when Crown Prince Frederik and Crown Princess Mary utter four or possibly five names which will be the official names of the princess.

But what is the child going to be called? All over the country most have begun to guess and already now there are a few favourites for the name.

NordicBet is paying 1.03 for the child to be called Ingrid after her great grandmother. Margrethe pays 1.50, while the third almost dead certain possibility is Henrietta, after the late mother of the Crown Princess which pays 1.50.

As it is pretty certain that the child will have at least four names, the new parents will have an opportunity to put their mark on history with a more personal name that is not inherited within the family. The Greenlandic name Pipaluk repays the a bet 30 times over. While Aziza pays 100 times over.

The names of the royal women:

Queen Margrethe: Margrethe Alexandrine Thorhildur Ingrid.

Princess Benedikte: Benedikte Astrid Ingeborg Ingrid.

Princess Elisabeth (cousin to Margrethe, Benedikte and Anne-Marie and a favoured grandchild of Christian X when she was a child): Elisabeth Caroline-Mathilde Alexandrine Helena Olga Thyra Feodora Estrid Margarethe Desiree.

Bet24 more believes Margrethe is a favoured name, followed by Henrietta and Ingrid coming in third. Going against Ingrid is the fact Norway already has the patent on the name given to the firstborn of the Crown Prince couple there who is Ingrid Alexandra.

Bet24 pays out by 20 times over if the princess should be named after her mother and 1000 times over if the child will be named Bet24. In the latter case the Danish legislation regarding names* would come into play.

Other royal names like Thyra, Caroline, Mathilde, Benedikte and Alexandrine is also on the list.

* You cannot call your child whatever you want to in Denmark. There is legislation to control the use of names to protect the child from being called something silly, too unusual, offensive, blasphemous or profane. With due respect to the religion of the parents or if one or both parents are foreign, then there is consideration of what is normal in their native country.
(thanks Muhler!)

Another article from TV2 24 April 2007: The Crown Prince: It is not a doll!

When the Crown Prince couple left Rigshospitalet shortly after 11am with the little new princess the press showed up in great numbers as expected.

Mary was in good spirits and a smiling Frederik answered the more or less daft questions willingly, which is part of such an occasion.

At some point the madness became at bit too much, when a representative of the media asked to have the cap removed from the newborn “so we can see the beautiful dark hair”.

“Remember, it’s not a doll, she’s a child,” was the commanding reply from the Crown Prince.

Bravo, Frederik!
(thanks Muhler!)

And one more from a TV2 article 24 April 2007: Little prince crazy about TV2 helicopter
While mum and dad waved to the crowd gathered outside Kancellihuset in order to welcome the Crown Prince couple and the new princess of Denmark, little Prince Christian lost the concentration and pointed towards the higher spheres.

Little sister was for a moment forgotten when little Christian spotted TV2’s news-chopper, circling above Fredensborg to transmit the homecoming live on TV.

And the concentration became somewhat doubtful when the family withdrew from the crowd. The 18 month old prince much preferred to stay outside to play. But the Crown Prince managed to get him inside, where they were to have a cosy time with mommy Mary.

The Crown Princess had her hands full with the hungry new arrival, who during the presentation at Rigshospitalet had a small hand firmly attached to her mother’s cleavage, as if she was making sure everything was within reach.

“She has a good appetite,” said Mary...who also confirmed to the press that she has sufficient courage to have more children. However “one at a time” she smiled, before she got in the car with her daughter and the Crown Prince in order to go home to to little Christian and the helicopter.
(and, of course, thanks Muhler!)

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Frederik at Galathea 3 homecoming

Today Crown Prince Frederik has been to Langelinje (part of the Copenhagen harbour) to take part in the homecoming celebration for the return of the Galathea 3 expedition on the specially re-fitted Danish navy surveillance vessel the Vædderen. It has been 258 days since the Vædderen set sail from Copenhagen. Frederik joined the ship as it entered the harbour and the Sixtus Battery gave a salute as it sailed into Langelinje with the Crown Prince on board.

Galathea 3 photo gallery

B.T. photo gallery

B.T. video clip (02:54)

Added: The Copenhagen Post 'Around the world in 287 days'

We should also mention that before Lillepigen was born Frederik had also attended several functions in anticipation of the return of the Galathea 3 research expedition voyage in the Vædderen to mark its homecoming. The events were organised by the Danish Expeditionary Foundation at Nyhavn in Copenhagen and recognised the sponsors. There was a time when sponsorship by newspaper Jyllands Posten made all the difference for the expedition to proceed. The foundation has been the organiser and fundraiser for Galathea 3. There have been a number of events to mark the return of the Vædderen and highlight the work of the expedition. Frederik attended a lunch on 12 April 2007 and another on April 17.

There was an interesting note for April 17: as it made its way home, the Vædderen passed the point in the Atlantic where the Titanic sank, at 41 degrees 46 minutes north by 50 degrees 14 minutes west. Also check out the Jyllands Posten/Galathea 3 photo series from the whole voyage including the 'best of' gallery just posted.

An interesting Swedish link which gives a good overview of the vision behind the Galathea project: SASNET - Swedish South Asian Studies Network

And a little background about Galathea 3: it is the largest Danish scientific expedition since the Galathea 2 expedition more than 50 years ago. The aim is to strengthen Danish scientific research through the research projects conducted during the expedition, and also to inspire recruitment of scientists from among upcoming generations.

Galathea 3 has focused on education and communicating about the 71 research projects conducted on board the Vaedderen. The ship has circumnavigated the world over seven months at sea with 35 research scientists, a dozen journalists, photographers and TV crew, plus a couple of students and their teacher onboard. A crew of 50 have kept the ship sailing and functioning for the more or less 100 people onboard.

The research projects have included the areas of climate and the environment, biology, geology, history and culture.

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Monday 23 April 2007

Mary, Frederik & 'lille pige' arrive at Fredensborg

Crown Prince Frederik with his son Prince Christian on his arm and Crown Princess Mary present their new born daughter on 23 April 2007 at their home at Fredensborg Palace, north of Copenhagen. Before returning home Mary told the press at the hospital that they were calling the new little member of the family "lille pige" which means little girl in Danish. This matches their name for Christian before he was christened - Mary said she callled him "lillemand", or little man.

* Madeleine Glindorf's gallery (thanks Madeleine!)

The Copenhagen Post:

Royal salute for newborn princess

23 April 2007

Palaces across the country Sunday fired a royal salute in honour of Denmark's new princess.

The first princess born into the Danish royal family since 1946 was born to Crown Princess Mary and her husband Crown Prince Frederik Saturday, giving the old canons at the nation's castles and palaces cause to fire away in honour of the event.

As with every significant event in the royal family, canons at the nation's palaces, forts and castles - some dating back to the 1700s - fired a 21-gun salute to celebrate the birth. In the past, the births of princesses used to receive only a 17-gun salute, but the tribute was made equal just prior to the birth of the new princess's older brother, 18-month-old Prince Christian.

The baby girl arrived two weeks early but was in good health, as was her mother, according to the royal family's spokesperson. The new princess weighed in at 3350 grams and was 50 cm tall. She is the first girl born into the royal family since Queen Margrethe's sister, Princess Anne-Marie, was born in 1946.

Shortly after the birth, Crown Prince Frederik met a throng of reporters gathered in the lobby of Copenhagen University Hospital, joking that the princess 'looked like a baby' and had a full head of dark hair.

'It was just as fantastic and beautiful as the first time,' he said. 'There might have been a bit more routine on the father's part. It at least felt as if I was more in the moment.'

Danish flags, the Dannebrog, decorated public buildings, as well as many private companies and homes in honour of the birth, as dictated by tradition.

The name of the new princess will not be made public until she is christened - which in big brother Prince Christian's case took place three months after he was born. The name 'Margrethe' has been mentioned as a possible candidate, as well as 'Ingrid', the name of the late queen mother. Another possibility is 'Henrietta', the name of Australian-born Crown Princess Mary's late mother, as is the crown princess's middle name, 'Elizabeth'. All of the names could wind up in the princess's name, as members of the royal family typically have four given names.

News of the birth quickly spread throughout the world and John Howard, Australia's prime minister, was one of the first to wish the royal couple well.

'On behalf of all Australians I send them my very warm congratulations. Crown Prince Frederik looked like a very happy father on the television,' Howard told Australian reporters.

The new princess is third in line to the Danish throne behind Crown Prince Frederik and little Prince Christian.

The Copenhagen Post

From The Mercury (Mary's hometown newspaper in which her own birth was announced 35 years ago):
Mary shows her little princess

in Copenhagen
April 24, 2007 12:00am

PRINCESS Mary's newest crown jewel shone brightly last night as the newborn girl left hospital to begin her fairytale life.

New mum Mary cradled the tiny daughter she's nicknamed little "Pigen" -- Danish for girl -- for a crowd of hundreds gathered for the first glimpse.

"She's been good, very good for her mother. Only up once a night," the radiant former Tasmanian princess said.

"I breastfeed her ... and she has a very good appetite."

The baby's tiny hand hung onto the neck of mum's top throughout the 15-minute press call, but she appeared to be asleep most of the time.

Barely two days after she was born, the baby princess handled the media like a pro.

Dubbed "Mini Mary" by the Danish press in the absence of a formal name, she reportedly has dark, curly hair but it was hidden under a cap. She was wrapped in an antique lace blanket.

"We're calling her little girl at the moment, which is quite sweet in Danish," Mary said.

The princess said she had thought about her late mother Henrietta as she gave birth.

"The birth went really well, it was easier this time, even though the word easy is not one that you use about giving birth," she said.

The relaxed-looking royal couple knocked back the offer of a tube of Vegemite from two Aussie backpackers in the crowd.

"She's a little bit young isn't she," joked Mary, who wore a loose grey top and stylish slim-fit blue pants.

She said the new baby's brother, Prince Christian, had already shown interest in her, "a little bit of boyish love".

Mary said a trip Down Under to show off the new addition wasn't on the cards for now.

"We don't have any plans," she said.

She said she was proud to have delivered the first princess for many years into the Danish royal family.

She is the first daughter born into the royal family since 1946.

"We didn't know we were having a girl," Mary said before her husband chipped in: "We are very fortunate, very lucky to have a girl."

Prince Frederik was a good coach throughout the six-hour labour, Mary said.

"It's lovely to have one of each sex," she said.

She said it would be a great advantage for the little girl to be so close in age to older brother Prince Christian.

"But I will love them equally," she said.

She refused to comment at all about the child's formal name.

"We're going to go home and relax and ... return to our everyday lives, even though the past couple of days have been wonderful," she said.

Prince Frederik said Crown Prince Christian was looking forward to having his mum home.

The princess spoke Danish easily to the crowd, with a hint of an accent the few times she switched to English.

The couple stopped to thank the medical team before they stepped into waiting cars to drive home to their Fredensborg home.

Excited members of the public waved flags outside the hospital.

The couple's palace has been transformed with hundreds of bouquets, teddy bears and other gifts delivered in the past couple of days to celebrate the birth.

The baby's formal name will not be revealed until her christening, probably within three months.
Possible names include the traditional Danish royal tag Margrethe -- the same as the current Queen -- or Ingrid, after the baby's great-grandmother.

Princess Mary is said to favour the name of her late mother Henrietta, and an outside chance is the Greenlandic name Aziaja.

Hello magazine 'Proud dad Frederik measures up his new baby daughter'

Hello magazine 'Denmark's newborn princess makes her public debut'

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