Friday 27 April 2007

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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