Queen Margrethe II of Denmark inaugurates her works at the Henri Martin museum, in Cahors, southern France Photograph - AFP
Queen Margrethe II of Denmark inaugurates her works at the Henri Martin museum, in Cahors, southern France Photograph - AFP

Following the death of Britain’s Queen Elizabeth II, Denmark’s popular Queen Margrethe II has become Europe’s longest-serving monarch.

Hailed for unifying and modernising the Danish monarchy in her 50 years on the throne, the 82-year-old is always impeccably coiffed with her white hair swept up in a bun.

After Buckingham Palace confirmed the death of Britain’s head of state, Denmark announced it will scale back golden jubilee festivities this weekend.

Becoming the first woman to hold the position of reigning queen in Denmark, Margrethe came to the throne at the age of 31 in January 1972 after the death of her father.

Only 45 per cent of Danes were in favour of the monarchy at the time of her accession but she wanted to prove them wrong.

Allowing her two sons to marry commoners, Margrethe has managed to stay away from scandal and helped to modernise the institution.

Enjoying the support of more than 80 per cent of Danes, the Danish monarchy is one of the most popular in the world.

While her third cousin Queen Elizabeth was the British monarch for 70 years, she has been reigning monarch of Denmark for 50 years and seven months.

Her Swedish cousin Carl XVI Gustaf, who has been monarch for 48 years, trails behind her.

After Queen Elizabeth II’s demise, Margrethe is also Europe’s only reigning queen even though four other European countries have crown princesses.

Born in Copenhagen in 1940, Margrethe, the eldest of three sisters, eventually became the queen at a time when women were barred from inheriting the throne in Denmark.

Under pressure from successive Danish governments mindful of a need to modernise society, the law was changed in 1953 following a referendum.

With a scaled-down celebration due to the coronavirus pandemic, Margrethe marked the 50th anniversary of her accession in January.

Keeping the monarchy relevant without diminishing its status, she has repeatedly insisted that she will never step down from her duties.

Source : wionews.com

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