In September, Queen Margrethe announced that the children of her youngest son, Prince Joachim, would no longer be able to use the royal titles prince or princess after January 1 2023, which has now come into effect. Prince Joachim and his wife, Princess Marie were upset by the change and said in an interview that the Danish monarch had not spoken to them since the announcement.
At the time, Queen Margrethe said she wanted to “future-proof” the monarchy by slimming it down but “underestimated” her family’s “strong reactions” to the decision.
Prince Joachim said his children had been “mistreated” while Princess Marie said her youngest child had been bullied at school due to the announcement.
The four grandchildren, Prince Nikolai, age 23, Prince Felix, age 20, Prince Henrik, age 13, and Princess Athena, age 10, will now go by the titles Count or Countess instead of Prince or Princess.
The eldest grandchild, Nikolai, said his family had been “shocked” and that he felt “very bewildered” by the decision.
In her televised New Year’s Eve address, Queen Margrethe made a rare comment about trouble within her own family while reflecting on the past year.
Her speech included commentary on the war in Ukraine as well as the Danish Queen celebrating 50 years on the throne.
However, she also spoke about how hurt and sad she felt about the rift between herself and Prince Joachim.
She said: “I always feel great love for my entire family. Difficulties and misunderstandings may arise in any family, also in mine.
“The whole country has witnessed that. That the relationship with Prince Joachim and Princess Marie has run into difficulties makes me sad.”
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The move by Queen Margrethe to try and slim down the monarchy has drawn parallels with the British Royal Family.
It has been said that King Charles has wished to reduce the number of working royals, and there has been some public speculation about whether Prince Harry and Meghan Markle’s children will be given royal status.
In their interview with Oprah in 2021, Meghan Markle spoke about her son Archie’s title and said there may be a change in the rules, which now currently state that the grandchildren of the monarch are entitled to a royal title.
There has also been some public debate about Prince Harry’s royal title, as a recent YouGov survey released this weekend found 44 percent of participants wished for the Duke of Sussex to be stripped of his title.
The same poll found that 23 percent said Prince Harry and Meghan Markle’s Netflix documentary released in December made them think worse of the couple.
However, the majority (51 percent) still wished for both Prince Harry and Meghan Markle to be invited to King Charles’s coronation this year.