God’s help, the love of The People, Denmark’s strength
When Princess Margrethe of Denmark was born on 16 April 1940, she had no succession rights whatsoever, and now she is celebrating 50 years on the throne.
Margrethe’s family was quite popular with the people, and so work began on a new Act of Succession that would allow for a woman to succeed in the event that Margrethe had no brothers (male-preference primogeniture). This law had to be passed by two successive Parliaments and by a referendum, which finally took place on 27 March 1953. The 12-year-old Margrethe thus became the new heiress presumptive to the throne. On her 18th birthday, she was given a seat in the Council of State.
The death of Margrethe’s father came rather unexpected. He gave his traditional New Year’s Address to the nation on 31 December 1971 and fell ill with pneumonia shortly after. He suffered a cardiac arrest a few days later and was rushed to the hospital. He died on 14 January 1972 at 7:50 p.m., surrounded by his family.
At 31 years old and with two small children, Margrethe became the second woman to rule Denmark in her own right. She was proclaimed Queen on 15 January by the Prime Minister.
Her Silver Jubilee was celebrated in 1997 with a religious service and a gala dinner.
Her 40th year on the throne, the Ruby Jubilee, was celebrated in much grander style with a religious service, a concert, a carriage procession and a gala dinner. She also gave several TV interviews.
As she celebrates her 50th year on the throne, she will no doubt remember the father she lost. She will visit her father’s grave and lay a wreath. With her 50 years on the throne, she is currently Denmark’s second-longest reigning monarch behind King Christian IV, who reigned for 59 years and 331 days.
Her Golden Jubilee celebrations will include a special exhibition at Amalienborg Palace in Copenhagen called “A Queen’s Jewels Case.” Queen Margrethe and her family were supposed to make a balcony appearance to receive the well-wishes from the crowd. In addition, there was supposed to be a carriage procession, an official lunch and a gala dinner. On Sunday the 16th, she was supposed to attend a special thanksgiving service at Copenhagen Cathedral. There was supposed to be another gala dinner with foreign guests and Danish dignitaries in the evening. Unfortunately, most festivities have been cancelled due to the pandemic.