Saturday 1 January 2011

Mary in the media

Photos © Marc Høm /
Anticipation for the birth of Crown Princess Mary's twins is building among royal watchers in Denmark, Australia and a world wide sprinkling too* and in the Danish and Australian media. The Crown Prince Family has spent its first Christmas and New Year at the recently renovated Frederik VIII's Palace at Amalienborg with their first night at their new home on December 17. The Crown Prince's standard was raised and Royal Guards were stationed outside. German Vogue has featured Frederik, Mary and the children and the new art works in the renovated Rococo Frederik VIII's Palace in its January 2011 issue. Even the twins make an 'appearance' wrapped in Danish red. The photographer is Marc Høm, who is married to Caroline Heering's sister and whose wedding was attended by Frederik and Mary.

According to's publication preview, the photo of the family together in the Knight's Hall is a reference to a Velázquez court painting. Frederik said: "Being a modern couple, we have modern interests, so we try to reconcile this with the traditional. About the renovation, we have decided to include contemporary art." The article centre's on the Crown Prince Couple's royal style in an old palace revived with modern art.

For six years Frederik VIII's Palace at Amalienborg, built in the elegant style of the European Rococo, was modernised for about €30 million. Since 1828 Frederik VIII's Palace has been in royal use and is home to the Danish Crown Prince Frederik of Denmark and Crown Princess Mary, their children Prince Christian (5) and Princess Isabella (3). In January, the royal couple is expecting twins.

"The interesting thing about modern art is that it provokes dialogue. The refurbished rooms combine respectfully restored antiques with contemporary design and historical works by Danish artists with modern art", said Crown Prince Frederik of Denmark. 15 December 2010

...and three of the artists with their works in the palace: photo gallery of the art and decoration in the palace interior

Photos © Marc Høm /

If you don't have access to the magazine and are interested in purchasing it, try emailing in English to at

Mary's gold dress is by Talbot Runhof

Sky News clip - Australia


Meanwhile, don't know what News Ltd's journalist Damien Brown usually reports on, but a royal reporter he is not, at least on the evidence of his handiwork in the last few days. Where to start? Every paragraph has errors. Okay, let's just work through it one by one:
  • "...the recent cancellation of several traditional Christmas and upcoming New Year events..." - Crown Princess Mary has taken 'maternity leave' for each of her pregnancies. Mary's last event before Christian was born was 13 September 2005, although paparazzi photos were taken of her walking in the palace park around Chancellory House, including the day before Christian was born, 15 October 2005 . We saw a little more of Mary before Isabella's birth on 21 April 2007 because of the balcony appearance for the Queen's birthday on 16 April 2007 and Christian beginning nursery school on 27 March 2007, otherwise her last official event was 20 March 2007. This time around Mary's last official event was at the Queen's neighbourhood reception for Fredensborg at Fredensborg Palace on 23 November 2010
  • missing the New Year royal courts is hardly surprising since Mary will either be in advanced pregnancy with twins or giving birth to them or at home with them and breastfeeding (Mary encourages this in her patronages for maternal and baby health for the UN and breastfed Christian and Isabella). Mary was simply not included in the royal guest list for the New Year courts this year because she is on maternity leave and Billed Bladet reported that she sent her apologies in advance long ago. Mary would otherwise normally attend court events on January 1, 4 and 5 and then a reception later in January for her own 25 patronages. The spokeswoman for the royal family made no special confirmation that Mary would not take part - she was just not included in the regular calendar postings of events on the royal family's website
  • "[Mary and Frederik] cancelled the annual trip to Schackenborg Manor..." - Schackenborg is not the traditional place for a Danish royal Christmas, so there was nothing cancelled. The royal Christmas is normally at Marselisborg near Aarhus. Christmas 2010 was an exception because of Mary's unusual pregnancy and the Crown Prince family have just moved into Frederik VIII's palace in Copenhagen. The Queen and Prince Henrik were in the unusual position of being able to do an unusual Christmas which included Nikolai and Felix because it was Prince Joachim's turn to have them. It was the first time the Queen and Prince Henrik had Christmassed at Schackenborg. In short, all was very unusual combined with the unpredictability of a harsh northern winter.
  • Mary "increasingly troubled as her stomach grows and grows"? There is no evidence Mary is at all troubled. Mary has looked happy and comfortable during all her appearances and there has been nothing to indicate otherwise. Frederik has been asked how Mary is during all his recent events and has replied she is very well and strong every time. Might Mary be tired? Quite likely, she is pregnant with twins.
  • We don't know that Mary is due to give birth in 'mid-January', there has only ever been one statement - the official press release which says "January". A natural birth always includes unpredictability and wishing an end doesn't have any effect on what is a physiological process. There is no planned Cesarean unless it turns out to be medically indicated. We know a lot about the birth team since we have met most of them all before for the births of Christian and Isabella and this time round Frederik will be considered part of the birth team according to Billed Bladet. With his experience he is expected to offer more than moral support to Mary by cutting the umbilical cord of twin A and holding him or her while midwife Birgitte Hillerup helps deliver twin B.
  • "A bonus was the surprise arrival of Professor Donaldson and his wife Susan Moody on Christmas Eve." - No, it must have been a planned visit since John Donaldson and his wife Susan now live in France and the Billed Bladet article last August says they will visit Denmark later in the year, ie: now. Christian and Isabella are accustomed to John and Susan looking after them when Frederik and Mary have been away (eg: their trip to the US) so it is a treat for the children while Frederik and Mary are busy delivering the twins. John and Susan used to live in Denmark but have been in France most of 2010 - see Billed Bladet's photo gallery of John and Susan at their farmhouse.
  • "The couple's new home at Amalienborg, to which they moved in July" - No, The Crown Prince Family officially took up residence on December 17, 2010. Mary has been very occupied with management of the move according to Billed Bladet which also confirmed in this article on December 12 that "The pregnancy goes as planned and the Crown Princess is very busy with the move," says head of DRF communications Lene Balleby.

Lucy Carne of The Advertiser/Adelaide Now got it pretty right though - so it can be done! - Denmark's Princess Mary prepares for early birth of her twins
The Mercury (Hobart) - Mary due any day soon
The Courier Mail (Brisbane) - Princess Mary's baby due soon
Perth Now (Western Australia) - Denmark's Princess Mary prepares for early birth of her twins
The Advertiser/Adelaide Now (South Australia) - Princess Mary ready for early birth of twins : by Lucy Carne, who at least got the facts right. Good on you Lucy!
Female First repeated all the rubbish with 'Princess Mary to give birth early?' - Crown Princess Mary of Denmark ready to deliver twins any minute

* evidence is based on the blog visitors, among other things.
Thanks gudinde, kimberley, Tamriko and Ayvee :))

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