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Denmark's Prince Henrik Says He Won't Be Buried With His Wife

Danish Queen Margrethe and Prince Henrik arrive on Capitol Hill in Washington in 2011.
Evan Vucci
Associated Press
Danish Queen Margrethe and Prince Henrik arrive on Capitol Hill in Washington in 2011.

Denmark's Prince Henrik has announced that he does not plan to be buried with his wife, Queen Margrethe II, because he is upset about the fact that he was never made King Consort.

The pair have been married since 1967. And over the years, Henrik has repeatedly expressed his feeling that he has been slighted.

"It is no secret that the Prince for many years has been unhappy with his role and the title he has been awarded in the Danish monarchy. This discontent has grown more and more in recent years," the Royal Danish House's director of communications told tabloid BT, in a quote verified and translated by Reuters.

"For the Prince, the decision not to buried beside the Queen is the natural consequence of not having been treated equally to his spouse - by not having the title and role he has desired," the spokesperson told the wire service.

The BBC reports that the 77-year-old queen is "said to have accepted her husband's decision."

Henrik, 83, is originally from France, and is reported to be spending most of his time at a vineyard there since he officially retired last year.

In a 2015 interview with Le Figaro, he said he is angry and feels discriminated against. "Why be only a prince and merely a Highness but not Majesty, without any status?" the Prince said. "Denmark, which is known as a fervent defender of gender equality, would be inclined to consider husbands as worth less than their wives? How can we explain to younger generations the usefulness of the monarchical system?"

According to the Danish edition of The Local, he expressed frustration about being passed over to host a 2002 event his wife's absence:

"In 2002, when Margrethe was too ill to greet guests at a New Year's event, the Royal House opted to have Crown Prince Frederik act as host. Henrik, upset about being upstaged by his own son, vocally complained that he wasn't allowed to receive guests in 'his own home'.

"In a follow-up interview with BT, he said he felt humiliated to be relegated to third-place status behind his wife and son."

Queen Margrethe is expected to be buried "in the Roskilde Cathedral in a sarcophagus made by Danish artist Bjorn Norgaard," according to the BBC.

Copyright 2021 NPR. To see more, visit https://www.npr.org.

Merrit Kennedy is a reporter for NPR's News Desk. She covers a broad range of issues, from the latest developments out of the Middle East to science research news.

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