Friday, 20 April 2012

65 years ago: King Christian X is dead - Long live King Frederik IX

At the beginning of this year, the Danish people celebrated the 40th anniversary of Queen Margrethe II as Queen of Denmark.

However, there is another significant anniversary to be commemorated. To this day 65 years ago the present Queen’s grandfather, King Christian X, died and her father ascended the Danish throne as King Frederik IX.

King Christian X and Queen Alexandrine.

King Christian (*26th September 1870) was not only King of Denmark from 1912 to 1947, but was also the only official King of Iceland (1918 – 1944). During the German occupation King Christian X remained in Denmark and became to the Danish people a visible symbol of the national cause.

Iceland’s Act of Union with Denmark recognized the island as a fully sovereign state united with Denmark under a common king on 1st December 1918. The Kingdom of Iceland established its own flag and asked that Denmark represent its foreign affairs and defense interests.
King Christian's Icelandic Royal Standard 1920.

On 18th June 1936 King Christian X of Denmark and of Iceland, arrived in Reykjavik on board the royal yacht Dannebrog with Queen Alexandrine, and their younger son, Prince Knud and his wife, Princess Caroline Mathilde. It was a holiday for the Reykjavik's 33,000 residents. Virtually every resident was at the harbor when the Dannebrog dropped anchor. The King addressed his subjects in Icelandic. The official delegation of reception was headed by Iceland's Prime Minister, Herman Jonasson, 35, who might have been the world's youngest Prime Minister at that time. During the US occupation of Iceland the union between the two countries was declared dissolved and a republic was proclaimed.

On 20th April 1947, King Christian X died, and his eldest son, Crown Prince Frederick (*11th March 1899 - +14th January 1972), succeeded to the throne.

He was proclaimed King Frederik IX from the balcony of Christiansborg Palace by Prime Minister Knud Kristensen. He remained Denmark’s popular King until his death on 14th January 1972.

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