Queen Margrethe’s heartwarming tribute to late husband Prince Henrik revealed as she becomes first Danish monarch to abdicate in 900 years

Queen Margrethe of Denmark paid heartwarming tribute to her late husband Prince Henrik as she stepped down as monarch yesterday.

The royal, 83, ended her 52 year reign yesterday afternoon after she signed her historic abdication papers at Christiansborg Palace in Copenhagen.

The mother-of-two wore a purple button-down jacket and matching skirt for the occasion. 

The former Queen – who had her hair swept back in her signature up-do – completed her elegant ensemble with a pair of silver and ruby earrings.

The priceless earrings were a present from Margrethe’s husband Prince Henrik, who passed away in February 2018.

Pictured: Queen Margrethe looked visibly emotional as she became the first Danish monarch to abdicate in 900 years yesterday

The late royal had given the earrings to Queen Margrethe in 1990 to celebrate her 50th birthday.

Queen Margrethe has worn the ruby earrings on several occasions – including her 40th Jubilee celebrations in 2012, as royal jewellery expert Lauren Kiehna pointed out on X, formerly known as Twitter.

What’s more, the royal paired her earrings with her diamond-and-ruby horseshoe brooch, which had been a present from her father King Frederik IX.

The royal wore this brooch for own proclamation ceremony in 1972 as it is believed to have been given to her to celebration her becoming Queen.

In February 2018, the Danish Royal Family announced that Prince Henrik – who was married to Queen Margrethe for 51 years – had passed away ‘peacefully in his sleep’.

In 2016, Henrik renounced the title of Prince Consort and spent much of his time at a chateau on a vineyard in southwestern France, although he remained married to the queen and officially still lived with her. 

The following year, French-born Henrik announced he did not wish to be buried next to the queen, breaking a 459-year-old tradition. 

The palace said it would respect his request not to be buried in a sarcophagus prepared for him and Margrethe and instead would follow Henrik’s wish to be cremated.

Queen Margrethe pictured with her late husband Prince Henrik in Caix, France, in 2002. Henrik passed away in 2018

Queen Margrethe pictured with her late husband Prince Henrik in Caix, France, in 2002. Henrik passed away in 2018 

The mother-of-two, 83, wore a purple cor-ord which she paired with her ruby-and-diamond earrings and brooch

The mother-of-two, 83, wore a purple cor-ord which she paired with her ruby-and-diamond earrings and brooch

Queen Margrethe pictured wearing the ruby-and-silver earrings Prince Henrik gave her for her 50th birthday

Queen Margrethe pictured wearing the ruby-and-silver earrings Prince Henrik gave her for her 50th birthday

Queen Margrethe pictured wearing her ruby-and-diamond brooch for her proclamation in  1972

Queen Margrethe pictured wearing her ruby-and-diamond brooch for her proclamation in  1972

Shortly afterwards, the palace announced he had dementia – he was hospitalised in January 2018 with a lung infection. 

Born on June 11, 1934, in southwestern France to parents with the noble titles of count and countess, Henri Marie Jean Andre de Laborde de Monpezat married Denmark’s future queen in 1967.

Henri became Henrik and converted to Denmark’s state Lutheran Church. However, he found it difficult to fit in with Denmark’s egalitarian lifestyle.

He was titled prince consort – the husband of a reigning queen but not a king – and he wasn’t in the line of succession – his oldest son Frederik being the heir.

Shortly after the royal marriage, media criticized Henrik because he had openly aired his views that spanking was good for children. In the mid-1980s, Henrik publicly said he wanted a paycheck instead of relying on the queen, who gets annual allowances.

The law was eventually changed to give him roughly 10 percent of the annual allocation Parliament makes to royals each year.

People pass an image of Queen Margrethe in Copenhagen, Denmark, ahead of of her passing on the throne to her son on Sunday

People pass an image of Queen Margrethe in Copenhagen, Denmark, ahead of of her passing on the throne to her son on Sunday

The former monarch signed her historic abdication papers with her son and grandson Prince Christian, 18, present in Christiansborg Palace in Copenhagen

The former monarch signed her historic abdication papers with her son and grandson Prince Christian, 18, present in Christiansborg Palace in Copenhagen

The pair looked overcome with emotion as they shared a loving look before then being joined by their four children

The pair looked overcome with emotion as they shared a loving look before then being joined by their four children

The Queen’s last words before leaving the Council of State yesterday were: ‘God save the King.’

Following this, the new King addressed the crowds that had gathered outside the royal palace from the balcony.

Queen Margrethe became the first Danish monarch to abdicate for 900 years when she stepped down as monarch yesterday. 

On Saturday night, the Royal – who announced she was stepping down on New Year’s Eve – listened to the public singing to her on the eve of her abdication. 

Danish royalists took to the streets of Copenhagen this weekend and waved red and white flags to honour their beloved Queen Margrethe.

A video posted on X, formerly known as Twitter, captured the public singing to Margrethe outside Amalienborg, Margrethe’s winter residence last night. 

One of the windows to the palace was left wide open, so that she could hear those who came to sing to her.

The Queen, known for her chain-smoking and flamboyant style – was seen on the clip walking around her home and peering out at the crowd.

Margrethe, who in the past had said she would remain on the throne for life, did not give an exact reason for her decision to step down.

However, she said that a major back surgery she underwent in February last year had made her consider her future.

‘The surgery naturally gave rise to thinking about the future – whether the time had come to leave the responsibility to the next generation,’ she said in her speech.

‘I have decided that now is the right time. On January 14, 2024, 52 years after I succeeded my beloved father, I will step down as Queen of Denmark.

‘I leave the throne to my son, Crown Prince Frederik.’

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