Queen Margrethe II: Denmark’s normal exceptional monarch

Status: 01/14/2022 10:24 a.m

Denmark’s Queen Margrethe II is celebrating her 50th jubilee on the throne today. As the first woman on the throne, she had an advantage, says the 81-year-old. A discussion with the public shows what she is popular for.

By Sofie Donges, ARD Studio Stockholm

Again there will be no carriage ride through Copenhagen. As with Queen Margrethe’s 80th birthday last year, the jubilee will also be small due to the pandemic – with few official appointments with the Danish government and parliament. However, the country wants to celebrate by far; for example with special programs on Danish television. 18 Danes were able to meet their monarch in person and ask her questions. The queen, who is considered to be close to the people, clearly enjoyed it and said, for example, that she would never eat in front of the television.

A woman from Copenhagen wanted to know whether it had been difficult to be the first woman to become head of state after hundreds of years. That had more advantages, the queen replied: “There was no such thing as: ‘The old king always did it that way’ or ‘The old king would never have done that’. Because it was a woman, you knew that it would be a little bit different. And it was a support for me.”

On June 10, 1967, Margrethe II married the French diplomat Count Henri de Laborde de Monpezat, who has since been known as Prince Henrik of Denmark. The couple has two sons: Crown Prince Joachim and Prince Frederik.

Image: picture alliance / Ritzau Scanpi

stage designer and studied archaeology

However, the young queen’s early years were not always easy. The then 31-year-old was considered shy and insecure, which nobody talks about anymore. Most Danes are very satisfied with their versatile monarch. They praise that she lives a modern understanding of the monarchy and leads an active, “normal” life – and is a good artist.

In fact, Margrethe has an artistic talent: she designs sets and costumes and illustrated the Danish edition of “Lord of the Rings” under a pseudonym. She also studied archeology, among other things – something Margrethe II is still very interested in today.

“Driving? No way…”

But there are also things she can’t do: “Cooking, I can still do that to some extent. But driving? No way! I’ve never been really good at it,” she joked. “Let’s put it this way: You would probably survive my food. Certainly not my driving…”

The celebrations have now been postponed to the beginning of September – combined with the hope that the pandemic situation will then be better.


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