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King Frederik's incredible gift for Queen Mary on his birthday

The Danish king and queen appeared on the palace balcony with their children

Danielle Stacey
Online Royal CorrespondentLondon
May 27, 2024
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It may have been his birthday, but King Frederik presented his wife, Queen Mary, with a priceless gift on his special day.

The Danish royal palace announced that in celebration of Frederik's 56th birthday, which fell on Sunday, he has awarded Mary the Grand Commander's Cross of the Order of the Dannebrog.

The Grand Commander order is reserved for persons of royal origin and it is awarded only to those with close family ties to the Danish Royal House.

Its glittering insignia, which Mary is likely to wear for any forthcoming white-tie events, features Frederik's cypher at the top of a red and gold cross, interspersed with crown emblems and surrounded by diamonds.

Mary's award was previously worn by the late Prince Henrik – consort to Queen Margrethe – but it has been restored with Frederik's emblem.

 There are currently seven Grand Commanders of the Order of Dannebrog. In addition to the King and Queen, other recipients of the Grand Commander's Cross include Queen Margrethe, Frederik's brother Prince Joachim, Margrethe's sister Princess Benedikte, Sweden's King Carl XVI Gustaf and Norway's King Harald V.

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Frederik and Joachim were the last Danish royals to be awarded the honour – both in 2004.

Women were only allowed to be awarded the Order from 1951, however Christian VIII broke tradition for this when he gifted it to Frederik VI's widow, Queen Marie Sophie Frederikke, in 1840.

Balcony appearance

King Frederik and Queen Mary delighted royal fans as they made an appearance on the balcony at Frederik VIII's Palace, Amalienborg alongside their four children and Queen Margrethe on the monarch's birthday on Sunday.

King Frederik and Queen Mary wave to royal fans alongside their four children and Queen Margrethe© Getty
A family balcony appearance for Frederik's 56th birthday

Mary stunned in a hot pink midi dress from No. 21's spring/summer 2018 collection, while her daughters, Princess Isabella, 17, and Princess Josephine, 13, borrowed pieces from their mother's wardrobe.

Isabella looked beautiful in a navy blue and floral wrap dress by Zimmermann, while Josephine donned a pretty blue and white frock from Paul & Joe.

King Frederik and Queen Mary holding hands on the balcony of Amalienborg Palace© Getty
Mary looked beautiful in pink

Frederik and his sons, Crown Prince Christian, 18, and Prince Vincent, 13, matched in navy suits.

Sporty royals

Frederik and Mary's four children also took part in the annual Royal Run last week, which saw over 95,000 runners take to the streets to complete races in Brønderslev, Aarhus, Fredericia, Kalundborg and Copenhagen / Frederiksberg.

Princess Josephine, Princess Isabella and Prince Vincent before Royal Run© Instagram / @detdanskekongehus
Princess Josephine, Princess Isabella and Prince Vincent before Royal Run

Frederik, who is an avid sportsman and has ran marathons in Copenhagen, New York and Paris, set up Royal Run to mark his 50th birthday in 2018 and it has become an annual event ever since.

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