Frederick IX of Denmark

Frederick IX of Denmark
Frederick IX redirects here. For the article about the Margrave of Brandenburg, see Frederick IX, Margrave of Brandenburg.
Frederick IX
King of Denmark
Reign 20 April 1947 – 14 January 1972
Predecessor Christian X
Successor Margrethe II
Spouse Ingrid of Sweden
Margrethe II of Denmark
Benedikte, Princess of Sayn-Wittgenstein-Berleburg
Queen Anne-Marie of Greece
House House of Schleswig-Holstein-Sonderburg-Glücksburg
Father Christian X of Denmark
Mother Alexandrine of Mecklenburg-Schwerin
Born 11 March 1899(1899-03-11)
Sorgenfri Palace
Died 14 January 1972(1972-01-14) (aged 72)
Amalienborg Palace[1]
Burial Roskilde Cathedral
Religion Lutheranism
Danish Royalty
House of Oldenburg
(Glücksburg branch)
Royal Coat of Arms of Denmark (1948-1972).svg

Christian IX
   Frederick VIII
   Alexandra, Queen of the United Kingdom
   George I of Greece (formerly William)
   Maria Feodorovna, Empress of Russia (formerly Dagmar)
   Thyra, Duchess of Cumberland and Teviotdale
   Prince Valdemar
Frederick VIII
   Christian X
   Haakon VII of Norway (formerly Charles)
   Princess Louise
   Prince Harald
   Ingeborg, Duchess of Västergötland
   Princess Thyra
   Prince Gustav
   Princess Dagmar
Christian X
   Frederick IX
   Hereditary Prince Knud
    Princess Elisabeth
Frederick IX
   Margrethe II
   Princess Benedikte
   Anne-Marie, Queen of Greece
Margrethe II
(paternally Laborde of Monpezat)
   Crown Prince Frederik
   Prince Joachim
   Prince Christian
   Princess Isabella
   Prince Nikolai
   Prince Felix
   Prince Henrik

Frederick IX (Christian Frederik Franz Michael Carl Valdemar Georg) (11 March 1899 – 14 January 1972) was King of Denmark from 20 April 1947 until his death on 14 January 1972.

He was the son of King Christian X of Denmark and Queen Alexandrine, born Duchess of Mecklenburg, and the fourth Danish monarch of the House of Glücksburg.


Birth and family

Four generations - four kings: King Christian IX, Crown Prince Frederick (VIII), Prince Christian (X) and the little Prince Frederik (IX) in 1903.

Prince Frederick was born on 11 March 1899 at Sorgenfri Palace in Kongens Lyngby on Zealand during the reign of his great-grandfather King Christian IX. His father was Prince Christian of Denmark (later King Christian X), the eldest son of Crown Prince Frederick and Princess Louise of Sweden (later King Frederick VIII and Queen Louise). His mother was Alexandrine of Mecklenburg-Schwerin, a daughter of Frederick Francis III, Grand Duke of Mecklenburg-Schwerin and Grand Duchess Anastasia Mikhailovna of Russia.

He was baptised at Sorgenfri Palace on 9 April 1899. The young prince had 21 godparents, among them his great-grandfather Christian IX of Denmark, Nicholas II of Russia, George I of Greece, Oscar II of Sweden, his grandfather Crown Prince Frederick of Denmark, the Prince of Wales (later King Edward VII of the United Kingdom) and his uncle Frederick Francis IV, Grand Duke of Mecklenburg-Schwerin.[2]

Frederick's only sibling, Knud, was born one year after Frederick.

Early life

Christian IX died on 29 January 1906, and Frederick's grandfather Crown Prince Frederick succeeded him as King Frederick VIII. Frederick's father became crown prince, and Frederick moved up to second in line to the throne.

Crown Prince Frederick in 1914.

Just six years later, on 14 May 1912, King Frederick VIII died, and Frederick's father ascended the throne as King Christian X. Frederick himself now became crown prince.

Frederick was educated at the Royal Danish Naval Academy (breaking Danish royal tradition by choosing a naval instead of an army career) and the University of Copenhagen. Before he became king, he had acquired the rank of Rear Admiral and he had had several senior commands on active service. He apparently acquired several tattoos during his naval service.

In addition, with his great love of music, the king was an able piano player and conductor.

Marriage and Issue

In 1922, Frederick was engaged to Princess Olga of Greece and Denmark, his second cousin and the daughter of Prince Nicholas of Greece and Denmark; however they never wed.

The newly engaged Princess Ingrid of Sweden and Crown Prince Frederick of Denmark in 1935.

Instead, he married Princess Ingrid of Sweden (1910–2000) at Storkyrkan in Stockholm on 24 May 1935. She was a daughter of Crown Prince Gustaf Adolf (later King Gustaf VI Adolf of Sweden) and his first wife, Princess Margaret of Connaught. They were related in several ways. In descent from Oscar I of Sweden and Leopold, Grand Duke of Baden, they were double third cousins. In descent from Paul I of Russia, Frederick was a fourth cousin of Ingrid's mother.

They had three daughters:


King Frederik IX and Queen Ingrid, circa 1950's.

From 1942 until 1943, Frederick acted as regent on behalf of his father who was temporarily incapacitated after a fall from his horse in October 1942.

On 20 April 1947, Christian X died, and Frederick succeeded to the throne. He was proclaimed king from the balcony of Christiansborg Palace by Prime Minister Knud Kristensen.

Frederick's reign saw great change. During these years, Danish society shook off the restrictions of an agricultural society and developed a welfare state. And, as a consequence of the booming economy of the 1960s, women entered the labour market. In other words, Denmark became a modern country, which meant new demands on the monarchy.


Frederick with his younger brother Prince Knud in 1920.

When he had no sons, it was expected that his younger brother Knud would inherit the throne, in accordance with Denmark's succession law (Royal Ordinance of 1853).

However, in 1953, an Act of Succession was passed, changing the method of succession to cognatic primogeniture. This meant that his daughters could succeed if he had no sons. His eldest daughter, Margrethe, did so, as Queen Margrethe II. By order of 27 March 1953 the succession to the throne was limited to the issue of King Christian X.


Shortly after the king had delivered his New Year's Address to the Nation at the 1971/72 turn of the year, he fell ill. On his passing 14 days later in Amalienborg Palace on January 14, 1972, King Frederick IX was buried at Roskilde Cathedral near Copenhagen, after a lying in state at the chapel of Christiansborg Palace. Previous rulers had been interred in the cathedral, but it was the King's wish to be buried outside.

He was succeeded by his eldest daughter, Queen Margrethe II. Queen Ingrid survived her husband by 28 years. She died on 7 November 2000. Her remains were interred alongside him at the burial site outside Roskilde Cathedral.


Statue of Frederick IX by the harbour in Copenhagen. In the background the royal yacht Dannebrog.

On 20 April 1982, a statue of King Frederik IX dressed in the uniform of an admiral was unveiled by the Copenhagen harbour on the 35th anniversary of his accession to the throne in 1947 and in the tenth year after his death.[3]

The Frederick IX Bridge which spans the Guldborgsund strait between the islands of Falster and Lolland was named after Frederick IX.

Titles, styles and honours

Titles and styles

Royal Monogram
  • 11 March 1899 – 14 May 1912: His Royal Highness Prince Frederick of Denmark
  • 14 May 1912 – 1 December 1918: His Royal Highness The Crown Prince of Denmark
  • 1 December 1918 - 17 June 1944: His Royal Highness The Crown Prince of Denmark and Iceland
  • 17 June 1944 - 20 April 1947: His Royal Highness The Crown Prince of Denmark
  • 20 April 1947 – 14 January 1972: His Majesty The King of Denmark


He was appointed 912th Knight of the Order of the Garter in 1951.


16. Friedrich Wilhelm, Duke of Schleswig-Holstein-Sonderburg-Glücksburg
8. Christian IX of Denmark
17. Princess Louise Caroline of Hesse-Cassel
4. Frederick VIII of Denmark
18. Landgrave William of Hesse-Kassel
9. Princess Louise of Hesse-Kassel
19. Princess Louise Charlotte of Denmark
2. Christian X of Denmark
20. Oscar I of Sweden
10. Charles XV of Sweden
21. Princess Josephine of Leuchtenberg
5. Princess Louise of Sweden
22. Prince Frederick of the Netherlands
11. Princess Louise of the Netherlands
23. Princess Louise of Prussia
1. Frederick IX of Denmark
24. Paul Frederick, Grand Duke of Mecklenburg-Schwerin
12. Frederick Francis II, Grand Duke of Mecklenburg-Schwerin
25. Princess Alexandrine of Prussia
6. Frederick Francis III, Grand Duke of Mecklenburg-Schwerin
26. Prince Heinrich LXIII Reuss of Köstritz
13. Princess Augusta Reuss of Köstritz
27. Countess Eleonore zu Stolberg-Wernigerode
3. Duchess Alexandrine of Mecklenburg-Schwerin
28. Nicholas I of Russia
14. Grand Duke Michael Nikolaevich of Russia
29. Princess Charlotte of Prussia
7. Grand Duchess Anastasia Mikhailovna of Russia
30. Leopold, Grand Duke of Baden
15. Princess Cecilie of Baden
31. Princess Sophie of Sweden


External links

Frederick IX
Cadet branch of the House of Oldenburg
Born: 11 March 1899 Died: 14 January 1972
Regnal titles
Preceded by
Christian X
King of Denmark
Succeeded by
Margrethe II

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