Prince Henrik of Denmark, the husband of Queen Margrethe, has died at the age of 83.
The controversial French-born prince had been diagnosed with dementia last year and was admitted to hospital in January with a lung infection.
The prince died “peacefully in his sleep” at the Fredensborg Castle, north of Copenhagen, with Queen Margrethe and their two sons – Crown Prince Frederick and Prince Joachim – at his side, writes BBC.
Born Henri Marie Jean André de Laborde de Monpezat on 11 June 1934, Prince Henrik married the then-crown princess Margrethe in 1967.
When she became queen in 1972, he was named Prince Consort – in Denmark, a princess traditionally becomes queen when her husband takes the throne, but a man does not become king if his wife becomes queen.
But over the years, Prince Henrik made no secret about his unhappiness at being denied the title of king. And many Danes disliked him for that, seeing it as a sign of an arrogant man hungry for recognition, writes BBC.
Resenting never being named king, in 2016, he 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.
In August 2017, Henrik announced he did not wish to be buried next to the queen, breaking a 459-year-old tradition. Shortly afterwards, the palace announced he had dementia, writes Channel Newsasia.
The palace has announced that it will respect Prince Henrik’s wish not to be buried in a tomb prepared for him and Margrethe who he said had never acknowledged him as her equal.
In accordance with his wishes, rather than being buried at a sarcophagus prepared for him and his wife in Roskilde Cathedral, Henrik’s body will be cremated and half of the ashes scattered in Danish waters and half buried in the garden of Fredensborg Castle, north of Copenhagen, where he died, report several media outlets today.
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