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Danish Prince Henrik, husband to Queen Margrethe, dies at age 83

Prince Henrik Of Denmark
Prince Henrik Of Denmark celebrates his 80th birthday in 2014
Patrick Aventurier/Getty Photographs

Prince Henrik, the French-born husband of Danish monarch Queen Margrethe who publicly vented his frustration at not being the social equal of his spouse or their son in line to turn out to be Denmark’s king, died late Tuesday. He was 83.

He was identified with dementia final yr and was hospitalized late final month with a lung an infection. Earlier within the day, Henrik was moved from a Copenhagen hospital to the family’s residence north of the capital, the place the royal palace mentioned he wished “to spend his final moments.”

A later assertion mentioned Henrik died at 11:18 p.m. in his sleep and that the queen and their two sons have been at his aspect.

“The royal household has misplaced an anchor,” Prime Minister Lars Loekke Rasmussen mentioned in a press release, who mentioned Henrik “saved his good spirits until the top.”

Flags have been at half-mast on private and non-private buildings throughout Copenhagen, together with town’s famed downtown amusement park Tivoli. Nationwide radio channels modified their morning packages to broadcast extra austere music interrupted by titbits and anecdotes about Henrik’s life.

Crown Prince Frederik, an Worldwide Olympic Committee member, had left Pyeongchang earlier than the official opening of the Winter Video games to hurry residence due to his father’s worsening situation. Throughout Henrik’s ultimate sickness, Danes wrote on the royal family’s Fb web page, providing heat ideas to his household.

The Danish royal household has no political authority, however is without doubt one of the world’s oldest kingdoms and prides itself on stability. Henrik, nevertheless, precipitated a scandal final August by saying that when he died he did not need to be buried subsequent to Margrethe within the cathedral the place the stays of Danish royals have gone for hundreds of years. The queen already had a specifically designed sarcophagus ready for the couple.

Born on June 11, 1934, in southwestern France to folks with the noble titles of rely and countess, Henri Marie Jean Andre de Laborde de Monpezat married Denmark’s future queen in 1967.

Henri grew to become Henrik and transformed to Denmark’s state Lutheran Church. Nonetheless, he discovered it tough to slot in with Denmark’s egalitarian life-style.

He was titled prince consort — the husband of a reigning queen however not a king — and he wasn’t within the line of succession — his oldest son Frederik being the inheritor.

Shortly after the royal marriage, media criticized Henrik as a result of he had overtly aired his views that spanking was good for youngsters. Within the mid-1980s, Henrik publicly mentioned he needed a paycheck as an alternative of counting on the queen, who will get annual allowances.

The regulation was finally modified to provide him roughly 10 % of the annual allocation Parliament makes to royals every year.

In a 2002 interview, Henrik once more shocked Danes by saying he felt he had been pushed apart in his own residence, not solely by his spouse but in addition by his son. This adopted the annual royal New Yr’s reception for international diplomats, the place Frederik had been host as a result of his mom was unavailable as a consequence of a damaged rib.

“For a few years I’ve been No. 2,” Henrik informed Danish tabloid B.T. “I’ve been glad with that position, however after so a few years in Denmark I do not instantly need to turn out to be quantity three and turn out to be some sort of wearisome attachment.”

Henrik lived his first 5 years in France’s Asian colonies. He graduated from universities in Paris, realized Mandarin and Vietnamese and spent a yr on the Hong Kong College from 1958-1959.

After his transfer to Denmark, Henrik, a eager pianist, was energetic in numerous organizations and wrote poetry, memoirs and books, together with a espresso desk e book on French gastronomy in 1999.

Margrethe and Henrik additionally owned a chateau in southwestern France the place they retreated each summer time.

Below Denmark’s Structure, the royal household has no political energy and is barred from involvement in social gathering politics. As a royal, Henrik held honorary ranks of common within the Danish military and air drive, and was an admiral within the navy.

Mette Jensen, a 33-year-old workplace clerk, mentioned that whereas the Danes had a “love-hate” relationship with Henrik, “I believe we’ll miss him.”

In September 2017, the palace introduced that Henrik had undergone checks at Copenhagen’s college hospital. The prognosis was dementia and “the extent of the cognitive failure is larger than anticipated,” the palace mentioned.

In January, he was admitted to a hospital with a lung an infection and later was mentioned to have a benign tumor.

On Friday, the royal palace mentioned his situation had “critically worsened” and Frederik was dashing residence.

Henrik is survived by his spouse, sons Crown Prince Frederik and Prince Joachim, and eight grandchildren.


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