Margrethe Alexandrine Þorhildur Ingrid, Queen of Denmark
Margrethe Alexandrine Þorhildur Ingrid, Her Majesty The Queen, became Queen of Denmark in 1972. HM Queen Margrethe II was born on 16 April 1940 at Amalienborg Palace as the daughter of King Frederik IX (d. 1972) and Queen Ingrid, born Princess of Sweden (d. 2000). The Queen’s motto is “God’s help, the love of The People, Denmark’s strength”.
Christened and confirmed
HM The Queen was christened on 14 May 1940 in Holmens Kirke (the naval church) and confirmed on 1 April 1955 at Fredensborg Palace.
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 the accession to the throne on 14 January 1972, HM Queen Margrethe II became the first Danish Sovereign under the new Act of Succession.
A Seat on the State Council
On 16 April 1958, the Heir Apparent, Princess Margrethe, was given a seat on the State Council, and the Heir Apparent subsequently chaired the meetings of the State Council in the absence of King Frederik IX.
On 10 June 1967, the Heir Apparent married Henri Marie Jean André Count of Laborde de Monpezat, who in connection with the marriage became HRH Prince Henrik of Denmark. The wedding ceremony took place in Holmens Kirke, and the wedding festivities were held at Fredensborg Palace.
HRH Crown Prince Frederik André Henrik Christian, born on 26 May 1968 and HRH Prince Joachim Holger Waldemar Christian, born on 7 June 1969.
HM The Queen attended Zahles Skole during the years 1946-1955, from 1946 to 1949 as a private pupil at Amalienborg Palace. In the period 1955-1956, HM The Queen was a boarder at North Foreland Lodge, in Hampshire, England. Having received private lessons, Her Majesty graduated from Zahles Skole with the upper secondary examination certificate (language line) in 1959. Next followed the years from 1960 to 1965, when HM The Queen studied at universities in Denmark and other European countries. After having passed the examination in philosophy at Copenhagen University in 1960, HM The Queen studied archaeology in the period 1960-1961 (Diploma in Prehistoric Archaeology) at University of Cambridge. Her Majesty, subsequently, studied political science at Aarhus University in the period 1961-1962, at the Sorbonne in 1963 and at the London School of Economics in 1965.
HM The Queen’s mother tongue is Danish. In addition, Her Majesty speaks French, Swedish, English and German.
Relations to the Defence
HM The Queen performed voluntary service with Women’s Flying Corps in the years 1958-1970, and received comprehensive training in the corps during this period.
HM The Queen is the supreme commander of the Danish Defence Forces.
In addition to the relations to the Danish Defence, HM The Queen has a special connection to particular units of the British Defence. In 1972, Her Majesty was appointed Colonel-in-Chief of The Queen’s Regiment, and in 1992 HM The Queen was appointed Colonel-in-Chief of The Princess of Wales’ Royal Regiment.
HM The Queen takes no part in politics and does not express any political opinions.
Tasks and duties as Head of State
Denmark has a Constitutional Monarchy, which means that the monarch cannot independently perform political acts. Although The Queen signs all Acts of Parliament, these only come into force when they have been countersigned by a Cabinet Minister. As Head of State, The Queen participates in the formation of a new government.
After consultation with representatives of the political parties, the Party Leader who has the support of the largest number of seats in the Folketing, (the Danish Parliament), is invited to form a government. Once it has been formed, the monarch will formally appoint it. Additionally, it is The Queen who is the formal Head of the Government and therefore presides over the State Council, where the Acts which have been passed by the Folketing, are signed into law.
The Prime Minister and the Minister of Foreign Affairs report regularly to The Queen to advise of the latest political developments. The Queen hosts official visits by foreign Heads of State and pays State Visits abroad. The Queen receives every Ambassador from foreign countries and also formally appoints and dismisses civil servants.
The Queen’s main tasks are to represent Denmark abroad and to be a figurehead at home. The Queen performs the latter task by accepting invitations to open exhibitions, attending anniversaries, inaugurating bridges etc.
In 1989, HM The Queen was awarded the Mother-Tongue Society’s prize, and Her Majesty received the Adeil Order in 1990.
Since 1970, HM 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. A great 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 (the Danish national gallery), Aarhus Art Museum, ARoS, and Køge Art Gallery Sketch Collection (sketches for church textiles).
Køge Art Museum of Sketches and The Glass Museum, Ebeltoft, both 1988; Millesgaarden, Stockholm, 1989; Blaafarveværket, Norway, 1991; Baron Boltens Gaard, Copenhagen, 1991; Gammel Holtegaard, 1993 and Herning Art Gallery, 1993-1994; Schloss Bourglinster, Luxembourg, 1994; Aarhus Art Building, Marienlyst Palace, Helsingør, and the Danish Central Library, Flensburg, all 1998; The National Museum, Reykjavik, (church textiles), 1998; Gallery J.M.S. (together with Dorte Foss), Oslo, 1999; Sofiero Palace, Hälsingborg, together with works of the late Crown Princess Margareta, 2002; The Karen Blixen Museum (découpage works), Rungsted, 2002 and Blaafarveværket, Norway, 2003; The Didrichsen Art Museum, Helsinki, 2002-2003; Yamanashi Hemslöjd, Tokyo, Japan, 2003; Brandts Klædefabrik, Odense, and Waldemarsudde, Stockholm, together with works of the late Prince Eugen, 2003-2004.