Saturday, August 5, 2017

Henri, the Unhappy Prince of Denmark

Prince Consort Hendrik of Denmark recently made it known, and the Royal Palace office in Copenhagen confirmed, that he does not wish to be buried alongside his wife Danish Queen Margrethe II. He has said that he does not wish to be buried in his native France so, we presume, he does wish to be buried in the Kingdom of Denmark but not with his wife the Queen. The Palace confirmed that this was because Prince Henri is unhappy with his title of "Prince Consort" and this is nothing all that new. For many years now the word has been circulating about how Prince Henri was dissatisfied with his title and that he resents not having been made "King of Denmark". The official statement from the palace said that the Prince did not appreciate not having equal status with his wife and this is something that has come up with him before. In 2002, he left Denmark in a huff after his son the Crown Prince hosted an official reception in the absence of the Queen since, as heir-to-the-throne, he is second in the royal hierarchy. This offended Prince Henri though he did finally return with the Queen granting to their children a new hereditary title based on that claimed by the French family of her consort. So, again, this is not exactly coming out of the clear blue sky, this is something Prince Henri has been upset about for many years now.

Most of the comments I have heard or seen have been extremely critical of the Prince to say the least of it. Given that, let me say at the outset that, yes, I think the Prince is being childish and that his devotion to his wife should outweigh any question of titles when it comes to where he spends his eternal rest. That being said, this is an issue that the monarchies of Europe have set themselves up for. First of all, we should consider precedent and recognize that this issue has come up before though not in Denmark where Margrethe II was herself almost unprecedented in that she is the first queen regnant Denmark has had in a great many centuries and only the second in the entire history of the western world's oldest monarchy. However, other countries have had to deal with this issue. In the Kingdom of Portugal, the husband of a queen regnant was always titled "king". The French, Germans, Italians, Poles, Belgians and so on never had a queen regnant. England has and the first (not counting Matilda) was Queen Mary I whose husband, King Philip II of Spain, was also titled "King of England". Queen Isabella II of Spain was married to the Duke of Cadiz who was titled "King Consort". Queen Juana of Castile married Philip "the Handsome" of the Habsburgs and he became King Felipe I of Castile, delivering Spain to the House of Habsburg. Her mother, Queen Isabella I of Castile, was of course married to Fernando of Aragon who was a king in his own right. Lord Darnley, husband of the ill-fated Mary Queen of Scots, was titled King Consort and Queen Victoria of Great Britain & Ireland had wanted to make her beloved Prince Albert "King Consort" but the government would not hear of it and so he had to settle for "Prince Consort" instead. The Habsburg domains have had one female ruler, Empress Maria Theresa, and her husband, the Duke of Lorraine, was ultimately elected Holy Roman Emperor. However, none of the English queens since Mary I have done the same, likewise all of the consorts of the Dutch queens have been 'prince consort' and not kings.

So, it has been done, it is only that it has not been done lately. The reason, in the past, was due to Europe being rather more Christian than it is now (which is to say it was Christian, or at least was serious about trying to be). In the vilified days of old, husbands were expected to be the head of their family, the master of the house, in other words the 'boss' and so it was often not thought appropriate that a husband should have a title subservient to that of his wife. Yes, that was then, this is now and this was never an issue in Denmark before but I point it out simply for the sake of context. Prince Henri's desire is not unheard of, just rather unheard of for this century. However, plenty of things are accepted these days that would have been unheard of in those maligned centuries past. Yes, again, I think Prince Henri is doing himself no favors with this petulant behavior but I dare say this will come up again and probably more frequently in the future.

After all, look at it this way: most of the monarchies of Europe have done away with male preference in the succession because the west has abandoned the traditional, Christian, view of the family. This has happened in the name of the 'equality' of the sexes (though obviously not of age but don't get me started on that issue). So, as queens shall become more common in the future of the European monarchies with Spain, Belgium, The Netherlands and Sweden all set to have female monarchs next time around, the egalitarian mentality will beg the question; why is a woman who marries a king given the title of 'queen' but a man who marries a queen is only given the title of 'prince'? Personally, I would not expect anyone to care that much as few seem to care about men being treated unfairly compared to women. Whenever that happens, the feminists suddenly turn all 'patriarchal' and say, "be a man and stop complaining". However, Prince Henri has objected and I would not be at all surprised to see some in the future take up the issue simply as a way of forcing more innovation on the remaining monarchies or just as an excuse to accuse monarchy of being inherently opposed to egalitarianism (which it is). So, yes, by all means, ridicule Prince Henri for his un-gallant behavior but also ask yourself; in this age of supposed equality, why do the girls get to be queens but the boys do not get to be kings when they get married?

Personally, I think it is just another example of the idiocy of the whole egalitarian mindset and particularly of the outright absurdity of trying to enforce "equality" on a monarchy, but, maybe that's just me...

11 comments:

  1. Actually Poles had a queen regnant.
    https://en.m.wikipedia.org/wiki/Jadwiga_of_Poland

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  2. Personally, I don't care if Denmark thinks their consort should be called a "prince" because honestly that makes no sense whatsoever to start with. I refer to him as "King of Denmark" because that is what he is.

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  3. I personally think he should be subservient due to the suo jure rule just as how the wife is subordinate to the husband when he rules in his own right


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    1. Regardless of who should be subordinate to whom, the wife's title is still of equal dignity of that of the husband's when he rules in his own right. In this instance the husband's title is of less dignity than the wife, and because that is not the case in the reverse, it should not be the case now.

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  4. I disagree. That if the religion is Christianity. Then per the religion. The wife is subordinate to her husband not matter how high status she is.

    Marrying into the family should make him King. He must be the one that sits on the Throne.

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    1. I'm so happy that it isn't you Americans who decide who our sovereign is.

      I like Henri more than most Danes, he's certainly been treated unfairly at times, especially by the media. But no matter what, he doesn't hold a candle to Margrethe. Margrethe is a clever, elegant, much less political correct than most other European monarchs and very knowledgeable of our history, and many other topics. Yet, most importantly, she's a Glücksburger, she and her dynasty are a continuation of Danish history. Henri is just a member of some minor French aristocratic family.

      Furthermore, this isn't the first time he's been acting like a child. In fact, behaviour like this is something that he's become infamous for, and it has been going on for so long that many people suspect him of having become demented.

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    2. ''I'm so happy that it isn't you Americans who decide who our sovereign is''

      Much obliged.

      ''But no matter what, he doesn't hold a candle to Margrethe. Margrethe is a clever, elegant, much less political correct than most other European monarchs and very knowledgeable of our history, and many other topics. Yet, most importantly, she's a Glücksburger, she and her dynasty are a continuation of Danish history. Henri is just a member of some minor French aristocratic family.''

      The Queen married poorly then. But given marriage in the Christian religion. If they are Christian. Then they must adhere to the divine order handed down from the Most High. As Christ is the head of the church so the Husband is head of his wife. Just as Christ is superior in rank to the Church so is the Husband superior in rank to his wife.

      As the Church submits to Christ so the wife submits to Husband. For to marry is to image that relationship. In so doing glorifying the God they worship.

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  5. I agree that he has a point. I dislike how he handled the situation. As I read it, it sounds as if he is being difficult because he has not received the title he wants.

    There are more important issues which he could use his position to address. Perhaps he would make a better case for obtaining his rightful title by acting regal, and taking a leadership role. Passive aggressive displays do nothing to make his case and everything to justify the converse.

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  6. There is only ONE monarch regnant, and that monarch is a citizen of the country over which he/she rules. CASE CLOSED. In the Victoria example, which happened in the 19th century, Parliament wisely forbade the Queen/Empress from giving her husband Albert equal titles. The specious complaints about giving a woman the title Queen by a King Regnant is just that -- specious. It is an honourific because of her sex. However, in the minds of many people, they WILL NOT understand the honourific nature because he is a MAN (DUH!). An outsider would then possibly be thought an heir to the throne when he is not. Phillip, Prince Consort Of Elizabeth II, should really have a heart to heart discussion with this idiot. Either that or Margarethe II should divorce him.

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  7. I think that what should be changed is that Queen is made comparable with king by not having consorts get title Queen but Princess instead. In UK this might accidentally happen since Camilla isn't very popular and there are people saying she should not have the title of a Queen.

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  8. Henri is a very embarrassing clown. How can he be king if he did not inherit the kingdom? He should take a look on the mirror, and realize that he is a nobody who pretends to be a royalty. That guy is very out of his place.

    If he really wanted to be a king then go ahead and found his own kingdom, not by marrying a queen regnant. A Frenchman has no business ruling in a foreign country.

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