Queen Margrethe's Grandchildren Lose Their Titles on Royal Family Website

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Prince Joachim's children are no longer princes or princesses. On Jan. 1, four of Denmark's Queen Margrethe II's grandchildren were listed as count or countesses on the royal family's website, rather than as a prince or a princess, titles that they inherited at birth. The title change was announced last year and went into effect at the start of 2023.

Joachim shares Nikolai, 23, and Felix, 20, with his ex-wife, Alexandria, Countess of Frederiksborg. He is also dad to Henrik, 13, and Athena, 10, with his current wife, Princess Marie, whom he married in 2008.

While the children used to be known as His or Her Royal Highness, Nikolai, Felix and Henrik now have the title of His Excellency Count of Monpezat, while Athena's title is now Her Excellency Countess of Monpezat. 

Queen Margrethe II announces changes to 4 grandchildren's titles
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In September 2022, Queen Margrethe II announced that four of her grandchildren's royal titles would change, and that they, as well as their descendants, would have the Count and Countess of Monpezat titles going forward.

"In April 2008, Her Majesty The Queen bestowed upon her sons, their spouses and their descendants the titles of count and countess of Monpezat. In May 2016, it was also announced that His Royal Highness Prince Christian, as the only one of The Queen’s grandchildren, is expected to receive an annuity from the state as an adult," the statement read. "As a natural extension of this, Her Majesty has decided that, as of 1 January 2023, His Royal Highness Prince Joachim’s descendants can only use their titles as counts and countess of Monpezat, as the titles of prince and princess that they have held up until now will be discontinued. Prince Joachim’s descendants will thus have to be addressed as excellencies in the future."

The statement noted that the decision by the 82-year-old monarch was made to simply fall in line with similar adjustments made by other royal houses.  

"The queen’s decision is in line with similar adjustments that other royal houses have made in various ways in recent years," the statement read. "With her decision, Her Majesty The Queen wishes to create the framework for the four grandchildren to be able to shape their own lives to a much greater extent without being limited by the special considerations and duties that a formal affiliation with the Royal House of Denmark as an institution involves. All four grandchildren maintain their places in the order of succession."

Queen Margrethe later spoke to reporters, who asked her about her decision.

"It is a consideration I have had for quite a long time and I think it will be good for them in their future," she said (via Hello!). "That is the reason."

When asked about her grandchildren feeling "ostracized" by the move, the queen responded, "Well, you have to see how you... I haven't seen it myself, I must say."

Shortly thereafter, Joachim reacted to his mother's decision in an statement to Ekstra Bladet, a Danish publication.

"We are all very sad. It's never fun to see your children being mistreated like that," he said, via translation. "They themselves find themselves in a situation they do not understand."

Additionally, Alexandria, spoke out about the change, noting that her children feel "ostracized" by the queen’s decision. 

In a statement toB.T., her translated message said, "We are all confused by the decision. We are saddened and in shock. This comes like a bolt from the blue. The children feel ostracized. They cannot understand why their identity is being taken away from them."

Queen Margrethe II announces changes to 4 grandchildren's titles
Getty Images

Later, Crown Princess Mary, -- who is married to Crown Prince Frederick and mom to the queen's other four grandchildren, Prince Christian, 17, Princess Isabella, 15, and 11-year-old twins, Prince Vincent and Princess Josephine -- told reporters (via Hello!) that she "can understand that it is a difficult decision to make and a very difficult decision to receive."

"Change can be difficult and can really hurt. But this does not mean that the decision is not the right one," she said. "We will also look at our children's titles when the time comes. Today we do not know what the royal house will look like in Christian's time, or when Christian's time begins to approach."


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