Royal reporter on Denmark Queen's move to strip grandchildren's titles

Margrethe of Denmark, 82, and her son Prince Joachim, 53, put on a united front and have ‘never’ had a rift in public, royal reporter claims – after the Queen stripped his children of their royal titles

  • Denmark’s Queen Margrethe removed royal titles from four of her grandchildren 
  • Today Prince Joachim claimed he was given five days’ notice about the change 
  • Royal added that the family was ‘very sad’ and the children ‘do not understand’
  • Change impacts Prince Nikolai, Prince Felix, Prince Henrik and Princess Athena 
  • Speaking last night, Queen Margrethe said it will be ‘good for them in the future’ 
  • Royal reporter said Margrethe and Joachim have ‘never’ had a rift in public

Queen Margrethe of Denmark and her son Prince Joachim put on a united front and have ‘never’ had a rift in public, according to a Danish royal reporter – after the monarch stripped his four children of their royal titles.

Kenth Madsen told FEMAIL: ‘There has never been a public conflict between the Queen and Prince Joachim.’

The reporter added: ‘There has also been no evidence that the population is against the Queen’s decision. The people love their Queen and Crown Prince Frederik (who is heir to the throne).’

However, Prince Joachim, 53, the youngest of Margrethe’s two sons, said his children Nikolai, 23, Felix, 20, Henrik, 13, and Athena, 10, had been ‘harmed’ by the news that they will have prince and princess removed from their titles, and will no longer be able to use His or Her Royal Highness. 

The move has created an ‘icy’ atmosphere within the Royal Family, according to one local media report, and has driven a wedge between a seemingly united family. 

It comes as the Danish royal household hit back after Prince Joachim claimed his four children were only given five days’ notice that they would be stripped of their titles by their grandmother Queen Margrethe. 

The palace said in a statement today that there are a ‘lot of emotions’ but that the decision had been a ‘long time coming’ and was designed to ‘future-proof’ the monarchy. 

Prince Joachim, who is sixth-in-line to the throne behind his brother and his children, commented on the bombshell announcement outside the Danish Embassy in Paris, where he lives with his second wife Marie and their children Henrik and Athena. Nikolai and Felix, who are both models, are the product of his first marriage to Alexandra, Countess of Frederiksborg. 

‘We are all very sad. It’s never fun to see your children being harmed. They are been put in a situation they do not understand,’ he said in an interview with Danish news outlet Ekstra Bladet today. 

Alexandra, 58, who was married to Prince Joachim for 10 years until 2005, said the news came like a ‘bolt out of the blue’ and her sons now feel ‘ostracised’ from their family. Her spokesperson also claimed Joachim learned the news through a royal aide, rather than from his mother directly. 

Margrethe’s other four grandchildren – Prince Christian, 16, Princess Isabella, 15, and 11-year-old twins Prince Vincent and Princess Josephine – born to her eldest son and heir Crown Prince Frederik will maintain their titles. 

Front: Queen Margrethe, Middle Row (left to right): Prince Vincent, Princess Josephine, Princess Athena, Prince Henrik. Back row (left to right): Princess Benedikte, Princess Isabella, Crown Princess Mary, Crown Prince Frederik, Prince Christian, Prince Joachim, Princess Marie, Prince Felix and Prince Nikolai in a portrait celebrating Queen Margrethe’s Golden Jubilee

The Danish public is not against their beloved Queen Margrethe’s (pictured) decision to strip four of her grandchildren of their royal titles, a royal commentator has suggested – after the palace said the move had ‘been a long time coming’

Prince Nicolai, Prince Felix, Prince Henrik and Princess Athena attend a service to mark the 50th anniversary of Queen Margrethe II of Denmark’s accession to the throne, at the Copenhagen Cathedral, on September 11, 2022

Prince Joachim of Denmark has said his four children have been hurt by their grandmother Queen Margrethe’s decision to strip them of their royal titles as he spoke for the first time since the bombshell announcement 

Prince Joachim (right back), 53, the youngest of Margrethe’s two sons, said he was only given five days’ notice that Nikolai (left), 23, Felix (second from left), 20, Henrik (far right), 13, and Athena (second from right), 10, will have prince or princess removed from their titles, and will no longer be able to use His or Her Royal Highness. Pictured with their grandmother Queen Margrethe (centre) and Princess Isabella (behind Princess Athena)

The move is said to have driven a wedge between Margrethe and her four grandchildren. Pictured, the Queen (centre) with sons Joachim (left) and Crown Prince Frederick (right). Also pictured: Crown Prince Frederick’s wife, Crown Princess Mary (right) and son Prince Christian (in his lap) and Prince Nikolai and Prince Felix (left) who will be affected by the change

Prince Nikolai of Denmark, 23, walks runway during the Dior Pre-Fall 2019 Men’s Collection show on November 30, 2018. He has also appeared on the cover of Vogue Scandinavia 

Prince Joachim’s children Nikolai, 23, Felix, 20, Henrik, 13, and Athena, 10, will all be losing their titles on January 1 2023

Indeed, they put on a united front just weeks ago when they celebrated Queen Margrethe’s Golden Jubilee. 

Queen Margrethe, 82, who attended the funeral with her eldest son Crown Prince Frederick, said she hoped the move would allow her grandchildren to ‘shape their own lives without being limited by the special considerations and duties’ that come with a formal affiliation with the Danish Royal Family. 

The statement also hinted that it is a move designed to streamline the monarchy – in echoes of King Charles’ desire for the British Royal Family, and those of other European royal households. 

Queen Margrethe last night defended her decision, saying at an event in Copenhagen: ‘It is a consideration I have had for quite a long time and I think it will be good for them in their future. That is the reason.’

It had been reported that Prince Joachim was first informed of the decision in May, however he has claimed this morning that he was only informed of the decision five days ago. 

Prince Nikolai and Prince Felix’s mother says she’s ‘in shock’ by move to strip them of their royal titles 

Alexandra, Countess of Frederiksborg – Prince Joachim’s ex-wife and mother to Prince Nikolai and Prince Felix – said she is ‘in shock’ over Queen Margrethe II of Denmark’s decision to strip her sons of their royal titles.

Nikolai, 23, and Felix, 20, along with their younger siblings Prince Henri, 13, and Princess Athen, 10, from their father’s second marriage, will all have their titles of prince and princess removed from January 1 2023, the palace announced yesterday.

‘We are all confused by the decision. We are saddened and in shock,’ Alexandra said in a statement from her press advisor Helle von Wildenrath Løvgreen, reported Danish magazine Se og Hør.

Earlier this month, Alexandra attended Queen Margrethe’s Golden Jubilee celebrations at the Danish Royal Theatre in Copenhagen (pictured)

The statement continued: ‘This comes like a bolt from the blue. The children feel ostracised. They cannot understand why their identity is being taken away from them.’

Earlier this month, Alexandra attended Queen Margrethe’s Golden Jubilee celebrations at the Danish Royal Theatre in Copenhagen.

Prince Joachim married his second wife Princess Marie in 2008, and they later welcomed Prince Henrik and Princess Athena.

‘I was given five days’ notice to tell them. In May, I was presented with a plan which, by and large, was that when the children each turned 25, it would happen. 

‘Now I had only five days to tell them. Athena turns 11 in January,’ he clarified. 

His ex-wife, Countess Alexandra, added in a statement to Danish magazine Se og Hør: ‘This comes like a bolt from the blue. The children feel ostracized. They cannot understand why their identity is being taken away from them.’

Her spokesperson Helle von Wildenrath Løvgreen told another news organisation that Joachim learned of his children’s fate via an aide. 

Queen Margrethe spoke neither to her sons nor her grandchildren, it is claimed. 

‘The children have received the message that they are losing their titles, delivered by their father, just as Countess Alexandra was told by Prince Joachim,’ the spokesperson added. 

Under the agreement, Nikolai, Felix, Henrik, and Athena will be known as either His Excellency Count of Monpezat or Her Excellency Countess of Monpezat from January 1, 2023. 

However they will maintain their positions in the order of succession. 

They are currently seventh, eighth, ninth and tenth, but would move down if any of Crown Prince Frederick’s children were to have children. 

The bombshell announcement was made in a statement released yesterday by the Danish Royal Household.

It read: ‘In April 2008, Her Majesty the Queen conferred the titles of Count, Countess and Comtesse of Monpezat on her sons, their spouses and their descendants. 

‘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.

‘As a natural extension of this, Her Majesty has decided that with effect from 1 January 2023, the descendants of His Royal Highness Prince Joachim can only use their titles as Count and Countess of Monpezat, as their previous titles as Prince and Princess of Denmark will lapse. 

‘Prince Joachim’s descendants will henceforth have to be addressed as Excellencies. 

‘The Queen’s decision is in line with similar adaptations that other royal houses have implemented in different ways in recent years. 

‘With her decision, Her Majesty the Queen wants 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,’ concluded the statement.

Margrethe, who is the world’s longest serving queen and celebrates her Golden Jubilee this year, is affectionately known as ‘aunt Daisy’ by European royals due to her close personal ties with many reigning monarchs.

Prince Nikolai, from left, Princess Marie, Prince Joachim and Prince Felix arrive for the command performance at the Danish Royal Theatre to mark the 50th anniversary of Danish Queen Margrethe II’s accession to the throne in Copenhagen, Saturday, September 10, 2022

Prince Nikolai of Denmark celebrated his 23rd birthday in August at home with his parents and siblings in Copenhagen. Pictured left with Prince Felxi, 20, Prince Henrick, 13 and Princess Athena, ten 

Nikolai with his stepmother Princess Marie, siblings, and father Prince Joachim, on the balcony of Amalienborg palace during the Danish Queen’s 78th Birthday in April 2018

Out of a title: The four grandchildren who will no longer be TRHs 

Nikolai of Denmark, 23: The Copenhagen Business School student and model regularly tops lists of the world’s most eligible bachelors. He lives in Denmark but has jetted around the world to walk for designers in Paris and London. Nikolai has also appeared on the cover of Vogue Scandinavia. 

Felix of Denmark, 20: Following in his brother’s footsteps, Prince Felix has also had success as a model and has starred in an advertising campaign for Georg Jensen. He had a short stint at the Royal Danish Military Academy but quit after two months because it ‘wasn’t for him’. 

Henrik, 13, and Athena, 10, of Denmark: The youngest of Prince Joachim’s four children, Henrik and Athena are the product of his second marriage to Princess Marie. They live with their parents in Paris. 

She is a first cousin of Sweden’s King Carl XVI Gustaf and a second cousin of Norway’s King Harald V. 

She enjoyed a close relationship with the Queen, a distant cousin, and the Duke of Edinburgh, and shared deeply personal tributes following their deaths. 

She was joined by her son Crown Prince Frederick at the Queen’s funeral earlier this month.   

The Queen seemingly enjoys a close relationship with both sons and all eight of her grandchildren, and makes regular appearances with both families.

However there is now said to be an ‘ice-cold air’ between the Queen and her grandchildren. 

‘There is ice-cold air between Queen Margrethe and her grandchildren after she decided that they will lose their titles as prince and princess from the New Year,’ leading Danish publication Ekstra Bladet reported. 

‘The news, which has crushed both the four children and their parents, was not delivered by the queen herself.

‘They have not been called to Amalienborg for a cold coke and an explanation as to why they must henceforth be addressed as counts and countesses. Not even that far.’

Joachim, the Queen’s youngest son, lives in Paris with his wife Princess Marie and has been working as a Defense Attaché at the Danish Embassy since September 2020.

In the summer of 2020, he suffered a stroke while holidaying in France with his family and had to be rushed into hospital for emergency brain surgery.

Both of Margrethe’s grandsons turned to modelling in their late teens. Pictured with their grandmother in May 2021

Felix made his modelling debut in February by posing in a series of moody snaps for jeweller Georg Jensen’s new Reflect collection

Nikolai modelling a short and gloves and a leather bumbag for Dior during Paris fashion week in 2020 

Left Nikolai wearing a pastel suit for Dior in 2018 at Paris Fashion Week. Right: The royal strutting his stuff on the runway in January 2020

Prince Joachim’s eldest sons, Felix and Nikolai, are Margrethe’s eldest grandsons and have embraced a life in the public eye. 

The 20-somethings, who both live in Denmark, both enrolled in the National Military Academy but dropped out before completing their studies. 

They have enjoyed flourishing careers as models, posing for several advert campaigns and on the cover of magazines. 

Nikolai caught international attention in 2018 when he walked in the Burberry show at London Fashion week, before a front row that included Kate Moss, Naomi Campbell, Michelle Dockery, Naomi Watts, Zendaya, and Idris Elba.

He is signed to Scoop Models agency in Denmark and has been multiplying his modelling gigs. 

Nikolai in a loose, tailored suit on the runway during the Dior Homme Menswear Spring/Summer 2019 in Paris in 2018

Nikolai has become a runway staple at every fashion show after making his debut for Burberry in 2018, left. Right, pictured walking for Dior Homme Menswear that same year

The grandson of Queen Margrethe made royal swoons in his official birthday portraits, pictured, before taking to modelling  

Extending an olive branch? Danish Royal Court shares photo of Princess Marie – hours after announcing her children will be stripped of their titles 

This morning, the Danish Royal Court’s official Instagram account posted a photo of Marie Agathe Odile Cavallier, the second wife of Prince Joachim.

The post was to acknowledge French-born Princess Marie’s appearance on Danish television to mark the country’s national Food Waste day.

Her Royal Highness spoke to the Danish schoolchildren at the Save Food event from her kitchen in Paris in a pre-recorded video message.

The Instagram photo caption read: ‘Her Royal Highness Princess Marie, who for a number of years has been engaged in the fight against food waste, sent a video greeting to school children from her kitchen in Paris.’

Princess Marie was featured on the official Instagram account just a day after Queen Margrethe revealed the children she shares with Prince Joachim, Henrik, 13, and Athena, 10, were to be stripped of their Prince/Princess titles and would no longer be referred to as His/Her Royal Highness. 

Princess Marie of Denmark appeared on the Danish Palace’s official Instagram account today as she appeared via video message at a food waste event from her home in Paris



He sent royal fans into a frenzy in February when he graced the cover of Vogue Scandinavia.

The 22-year-old oozed sophistication when appearing in the magazine and looked effortlessly stylish in a matching pink Dior jacket and trousers as he posed in front of a number of colourful flowers.

When he is not modelling, Nikolai is studying Business Administration and Service Management at the  In 2019, Prince Nikolai began his B education at Copenhagen Business School.

Last year he was living in Paris as part of a school exchange, and could see his younger siblings and his dad more easily. 

At the end of last year, he started training at the Royal Danish Military Academy to become an Army Lieutenant, but in October it was announced that he’d quit after just two months because it ‘wasn’t for him’.

Prince Felix chose to make his modelling debut for jeweller Georg Jensen, appearing in pictures and an advert promoting the new Reflect collection of necklaces, earrings and rings. 

The royal is further down the line of succession, pursuing his own career path rather than being a ‘working royal’ was expected choice for Felix even before his grandmother’s announcement, and modelling is certainly a popular choice for minor royals across the globe. 

While they are growing to be their own person, Felix and Nikolai do attend royal events on occasion. 

They both looked very dapper as they attended the celebrations for their grandmother’s golden jubilee with their parents in early September.

Princess Marie with Prince Joachim, Prince Felix, Prince Nikolai, Princess Athena and Prince Henrick with Joachim’s first wife’s Alexandra, Countess of Frederiksborg in 2020

Queen Margrethe and Crown Prince Frederik of Denmark at the State Funeral of Her Majesty Queen Elizabeth II. Margrethe tested positive for Covid-19 only 24 hours after Queen Elizabeth II’s funeral on Monday September 19

Queen Margrethe was pictured out and about for the first time on Monday after testing positive for Covid-19 last week. She attended a gala dinner at the Grand Hotel in Oslo after receiving the Nordic Association’s Language Award 

Queen Margrethe of Denmark, 82, attended the ‘reception of the century’ at Buckingham Palace, which was hosted by King Charles and Camilla before Queen Elizabeth II’s funeral

Margrethe tested positive for Covid-19 last Tuesday, just 24 hours after attending Queen Elizabeth II’s funeral and mourning events in London. 

She was in attendance at Westminster Abbey along with her son Crown Prince Frederik, and the two went on to the Queen’s Committal Service in Windsor afterward.

The royal also paid her respects to the Queen by visiting her coffin in Westminster Hall the night before the Queen’s funeral, and attended the Buckingham Palace ‘reception of the century’ where she was pictured chatting closely with King Charles.

On Monday, the monarch made her first appearance since she tested positive for Covid, joining Queen Sonja of Norway at a literary event in Oslo.

Queen Sonja of Norway presented the Nordic Association’s annual language award to Queen Margrethe of Denmark at Nordens Hus before they attended a gala at the Grand Hotel. 

Margrethe wore a vibrant long pink skirt for the gala dinner, which she paired with a navy blue lace top. 

She pinned her hair tightly back and was pictured with a navy shawl over her shoulders as she arrived at the Grand Hotel. 

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