HM Queen Margrethe

Margrethe Alexandrine Þorhildur Ingrid, Her Majesty Queen Margrethe II was born on 16 April 1940 at Amalienborg as the daughter of Frederik IX (d. 1972) and Queen Ingrid, born Princess of Sweden (d. 2000).

Queen Margrethe’s motto is "God’s help, the love of The People, Denmark’s strength".

Queen Margrethe's monogram. Photo: Kongehuset ©
On 16 April 1958, the Heir Apparent, Princess Margrethe, was given a seat on the State Council. Photo: Allan Moe, Ritzau Scanpix ©

Family

Queen Margrethe has two siblings: HRH Princess Benedikte (b. 1944) and HM Queen Anne-Marie (b. 1946)

Christening and confirmation
Queen Margrethe was christened on 14 May 1940 in Holmens Kirke (the Naval Church) and confirmed on 1 April 1955 in Fredensborg Palace Chapel.

The Act of Succession
The Act of Succession of 27 March 1953 gave women the right of succession to the Danish Throne but only secondarily. On the occasion of her accession to the Throne on 14 January 1972, HM Queen Margrethe II became the first Danish Sovereign under the new Act of Succession.

The Act of Succession has since been amended in 2009, when full equality in the succession to the Throne was introduced. That means the regent’s oldest child – regardless of gender – inherits the Throne (so-called primogeniture). Similar rules are found in several other European monarchies, including Norway and Sweden.

A seat on the State Council
On 16 April 1958, Queen Margrethe (at the time the Heir Apparent) was given a seat on the State Council and subsequently chaired the meetings of the State Council in the absence of the king.

Abdication
Her Majesty Queen Margrethe announced in the New Year's Adress on 31st December 2023, that Her Majesty would step down as Queen of Denmark on 14th January 2024 and hand over the throne to her son, King Frederik X.

Wedding
On 10 June 1967, Queen Margrethe (at the time the Heir Apparent) married Henri Marie Jean André, Count of Laborde de Monpezat, who in connection with the marriage became Prince Henrik of Denmark. The engagement was announced on 5 October 1966. The wedding ceremony took place in Holmens Kirke, and the wedding festivities were held at Fredensborg Palace. Prince Henrik passed away on 13 February 2018.

Children
HM King Frederik X (Frederik André Henrik Christian), born 26 May 1968, and HRH Prince Joachim Holger Waldemar Christian, born 7 June 1969.

Queen Margrethe and Prince Henrik's wedding, 1967. Photo: Erik Gleie ©

Education

Queen Margrethe attended Zahles Skole between 1946 and 1955 and was a private pupil at Amalienborg from 1946 to 1949. In the school year 1955-1956, Queen Margrethe was a boarder at North Foreland Lodge in Hampshire, England. Having received private lessons, Queen Margrethe graduated from Zahles Skole with the upper secondary examination certificate (language line) in 1959. Between 1960 and 1965, Queen Margrethe studied at universities in Denmark and other European countries.

After having passed the examination in philosophy at Copenhagen University in 1960, Queen Margrethe studied archaeology at the University of Cambridge, England in 1960-1961 and earned a Diploma in Prehistoric Archaeology. Subsequently, Queen Margrethe studied political science at Aarhus University in 1961-1962, at the Sorbonne, Paris in 1963 and at the London School of Economics in 1965.

Relation to the Defence
Queen Margrethe performed voluntary service with Women’s Flying Corps from 1958 to 1970 and received comprehensive training in the corps as corporal in the Women’s Air Force, sergeant in the Women’s Air Force and lieutenant in the Women’s Air Force.

In addition to her relationship with the Danish Defence, Queen Margrethe has special connections to particular units of the British Defence. In 1972, Queen Margrethe was appointed Colonel-in-Chief of The Queen's Regiment, and in 1992, she was appointed Colonel-in-Chief of The Princess of Wales' Royal Regiment.

Language
Queen Margrethe’s mother tongue is Danish. In addition, Her Majesty speaks French, Swedish, English and German.

Queen Margrethe performed voluntary service with Women’s Flying Corps from 1958 to 1970. Photo: Polfoto ©
Queen Margrethe visited The Princess of Wales' Royal Regiment in 2019. Photo: Chris Atkins Photography ©

Patronages and honorary memberships

Queen Margrethe is patron of many national organisations, institutions, and foundations and is an honorary member of various associations and societies.

Speeches

Queen Margrethe's speeches

Artistic work

The Queen's artistic work

Since 1970, The Queen has been actively engaged in a number of artistic modes of expression: painting, church textiles, watercolours, prints, book illustrations, découpage works, scenography and embroidery. Many of these artistic works have been shown in connection with exhibitions in Denmark and abroad.

The Queen’s artistic works are represented at the following art museums: Statens Museum for Kunst (National Gallery of Denmark), ARoS Aarhus Art Museum, and Køge Art Gallery Sketch Collection (sketches for church textiles).