The Much-Loved, Chain-Smoking Danish Queen

The Much-Loved, Chain-Smoking Danish Queen

She’s been called the ‘people’s monarch’. Denmark’s Queen Margrethe II, now 83, was born on April 16, 1940, a week after Nazi Germany had invaded Denmark. Learn more about the much-loved, chain-smoking Danish queen.

Her nickname is Daisy and she’s known from doing her own supermarket shopping, being hired for Netflix film and her less-than-harmonious family relations (including a husband who refused to be buried beside her).

The Much-Loved, Chain-Smoking Danish Queen
Queen Margrethe II is Europe’s longest-serving current head of state. Photo:

Denmark’s Monarch for over 50 years

Margrethe II of Denmark has reigned as Denmark’s monarch for over 50 years, she is Europe’s longest-serving current head of state and the world’s longest-serving current female head of state.

In 1960, together with the princesses of Sweden and Norway, she travelled to the United States, which included a visit to Los Angeles, and to the Paramount Studios, where they met several celebrities, including Dean Martin, Jerry Lewis and Elvis Presley.

She outstripped all other royals in terms of the longevity of her reign when her third cousin Queen Elizabeth II died aged 96 last September, after 70 years as monarch.

Related: Scandinavian Royal Line

The Much-Loved, Chain-Smoking Danish Queen
Queen Elizabeth II smiles whilst speaking to Queen Margrethe II of Denmark whilst watching a performance showing the process of D-Day through to post-war piece on Sword Beach during the Commemoration of the 70th anniversary of the Normandy landings, Ouistreham, France. Screendump from itvx

Close relationship with Queen Elizabet II

Margrethe enjoyed a close relationship with the Queen, having bonded during several official visits to each other’s countries down the decades – most recently in 2000, when Margrethe was received at Windsor.

Margrethe attended the funeral of Queen Elizabeth but underwent major back surgery in February and was unable to be at the Coronation.

There are, however, also some Danes who dislike the monarchy and the roughly 100 million kroner they cost Danish taxpayers each year. These people call the royal family Denmark’s biggest welfare recipients.

The Much-Loved, Chain-Smoking Danish Queen
Qeen Margrethe II by Andy Warhol

Her many passions

Margrethe is known for her strong archaeological passion and has participated in several excavations, including in Italy, Egypt, Denmark and South America. She shared this interest with her grandfather Gustaf VI Adolf of Sweden, with whom she spent some time unearthing artefacts near Etruria in 1962.

Almost everyone likes her, even if she last year caused a furore by stripping grandchildren of their royal titles. Support for the monarchy in Denmark has, however, been and remains consistently high at around 82%, as does Margrethe’s personal popularity.

Related: Danish Royalty Opened the Dior 2019 Menswear Collection

The Queen is the head of the Danish state church, and the Danish state – she still signs all the laws. But the Queen is also an artist. Her real entertainment is in designing her own clothes, and often chooses rather un-Danishly bright colors. She paints, and draws, and has designed stage sets for the Danish Royal Ballet.

The Much-Loved, Chain-Smoking Danish Queen
The Queen is the head of the Danish state church, and the Danish state. Screenshot

May God give me help and strength

“The task that my father had carried for nearly 25 years is now resting on my shoulders,” she says. “I pray to God to give me help and strength to carry the heavy heritage. May the trust that was given to my father also be granted to me.”

The Much-Loved, Chain-Smoking Danish Queen, written by Tor Kjolberg

Feature image (on top):


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