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List of Danish monarchs

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List of Danish monarchs

Royal Banner of the Kings of Denmark (circa 1300s).

This is a list of Danish monarchs, that is, the Kings and Queens regnant of Denmark. This includes:

  • The Kingdom of Denmark (up to 1397)
  • The Kalmar Union (1397–1536)
    • Union of Denmark, Norway and Sweden (1397–1523)
    • Union of Denmark and Norway (1523–1536)
  • The Kingdom of Denmark-Norway (1536–1814)
  • The Kingdom of Denmark (1814 to present)
    • Iceland (since the union between Denmark and Norway in 1380. Independent in a personal union with Denmark 1918–1944. A sovereign republic since 1944.)
    • Greenland (since the union between Denmark and Norway in 1380. Effective Danish control began in 1721. Integrated into the Danish realm in 1953. Internal home rule introduced 1979. Self-determination assumed in 2009.)
    • Faroe Islands (since the union between Denmark and Norway in 1380. County of Denmark 1816–1948. Internal home rule introduced 1948.)

The house of Oldenburg held the Danish Crown between 1448 and 1863, when it passed to the house of Schleswig-Holstein-Sonderburg-Glücksburg, a cadet branch of the same house, descended from King Christian III of Denmark. The kingdom had been elective (although the eldest son or brother of the previous king was usually elected) until 1660, when it became hereditary and absolutist. Until 1864 Denmark was also united in a personal union with the duchies of Schleswig and Holstein.

Semi-legendary Danish monarchs

The Sigtrygg Runestones of the "Swedish Oluf dynasty": was raised after king Sigtrygg by his mother. 934 AD.
  • Hugleik or the Latin name Chochillaicus 515 AD circa, First Danish King mentioned by Gregory of Tours (538 – 594).[1][2][3] Hugleik, according to the written sources suffered a defeat in the year 515 during a naval expedition to the Frankish Empire. Hugleik is the first Danish king mentioned in European sources.[4]
  • Harald, named as former king in relating 9th century events, perhaps model for legendary Harald Wartooth
  • Sigfred, nephew of Gudfred, and Anulo (Anlaufr), nephew of Harald, fought for throne and both were killed, perhaps model for legendary Sigurd Hring: c. 812
  • Sons of Gudfred: 814–820s
    • Horik I: (814) 827–854. king of the Danes (at first ruling jointly with his unnamed brothers). The Frankish annals mention Horik on numerous occasions during the next couple of decades.[9]
  • Horik II: 850s – 860s. He is believed to have been the immediate successor of Horik I, but the annals are silent about the name of the Danish king for a few years after the disaster of 854. In 857, Horik II allowed Rorik to occupy the part of the kingdom between the sea and the Eider. Horik II was still alive in the year 864, when a letter was addressed to him by Pope Nicholas I.[10]
  • Late 9th century kings
    • Bagsecg: c. 860s–871
    • Halfdan: 871–877
    • Sigfred: c. 873–891 It is generally assumed that he was the immediate successor of Horik ii, although that is not certain. His year of succession is unknown, but it was between 864 (when Horik ii was still king) and his first appearance as king in the Frankish annals in 873. Sigifrid was baptized in 882.[11]
    • Gudfred: 880s

Historical Danish monarchs

House of Gorm

Name Portrait Birth Marriages Death
Gorm the Old
(Gorm den Gamle)
c. 900
son of Harthacanute I
four children
c. 958
Harald I Bluetooth
(Harald Blåtand)
c. 925
son of Gorm the Old and Thyra
(1) Gyrid of Sweden
by 950
four or six children
(2) Tove of the Obotrites
c. 970
no issue
1 November 985
aged about 50-60
Sweyn I Forkbeard
(Svend Tveskæg)
c. 960
son of Harald Bluetooth and Gyrid of Sweden
(1 & 2) Gunhild of Wenden or Sigrid the Haughty
eight or more children
3 February 1014
Gainsborough, Lincolnshire
aged 53–54
Harald II Svendsen
eldest son of Sweyn Forkbeard and Gunhild or Sigrid
unknown c. 1018
Cnut the Great
(Knud den Store)
c. 985/95
younger son of Sweyn Forkbeard and Gunhild or Sigrid
(1) Ælfgifu of Northampton
two children
(2) Emma of Normandy
2/31 July 1017
two children
12 November 1035
aged about 40-50
c. 1020
son of Cnut the Great and Emma of Normandy
never married 8 June 1042
aged 21–22

House of Fairhair

Name Portrait Birth Marriages Death
Magnus the Good
(Magnus den Gode)
c. 1024
illegitimate son of Olaf II of Norway and Alfhild
never married 25 October 1047
aged 23

House of Estridsen

Name Portrait Birth Marriages Death
Sweyn II Estridsson
(Svend Estridsen)
c. 1019
son of Estrid Svendsdatter
(1) Gyda of Sweden
c. 1048
(2) Gunnhildr Sveinsdóttir
c. 1050
28 April 1074 or 1076
aged 54–57
Harald III the Soft
(Harald Hén)
c. 1040
illegitimate son of Sweyn II
Margareta Hasbjörnsdatter
no issue
17 April 1080
aged 40
Canute IV the Holy
(Knud den Hellige)
c. 1042
illegitimate son of Sweyn II
Adela of Flanders
c. 1080
three children
10 July 1086
St. Alban's Priory
aged 43–44
Olaf I Hunger
(Oluf Hunger)
c. 1050
illegitimate son of Sweyn II
Ingegerd of Norway
c. 1070
one daughter
18 August 1095
aged 44–45
Eric I Evergood
(Erik Ejegod)
c. 1050
illegitimate son of Sweyn II
Boedil Thurgotsdatter
before 1086
one son
10 July 1103
Paphos, Cyprus
aged 42–43
c. 1065
illegitimate son of Sweyn II
(1) Margaret Fredkulla
c. 1105
two sons
(2) Ulvhild Håkansdotter
c. 1130
no issue
25 June 1134
aged 68–69
Eric II the Memorable
(Erik Emune)
c. 1090
illegitimate son of Eric I
Malmfred of Kiev
c. 1130
no issue
18 July 1137
aged 46–47
Eric III Lamb
(Erik Lam)
c. 1120
son of Hakon Sunnivasson and Ragnhild Eriksdatter
Lutgard of Salzwedel
c. 1144
no issue
27 August 1146
St. Canute's Abbey
aged 25–26
Sweyn III Grathe
(Svend Grathe)
c. 1125
illegitimate son of Eric II
Adela of Meissen
c. 1152
two children
23 October 1157
Grathe Heath
aged 31–32
Canute V
(Knud 5.)
c. 1129
eldest son of Magnus I of Sweden and Richeza of Poland
Helena of Sweden
c. 1156
no issue
9 August 1157
aged 27–28
Valdemar I the Great
(Valdemar den Store)
14 January 1131
only son of Ingeborg of Kiev
Sophia of Minsk
c. 1157
Viborg Cathedral
eight children
12 May 1182
Vordingborg Castle
aged 51
Canute VI
(Knud 6.)
c. 1163
eldest son of Valdemar I and Sophia of Minsk
Gertrude of Bavaria
February 1177
Lund Cathedral
no issue
12 November 1202
aged 38–39
Valdemar II the Victorious
(Valdemar Sejr)
9 May/28 June 1170
second son of Valdemar I and Sophia of Minsk
(1) Dagmar of Bohemia
c. 1205
one son
(2) Berengaria of Portugal
18/24 May 1214
four children
28 March 1241
Vordingborg Castle
aged 70
Valdemar the Young
(Valdemar den Unge)
c. 1209
only son of Valdemar II and Dagmar of Bohemia
Eleanor of Portugal
24 June 1229
Ribe Cathedral
one child
28 November 1231
aged 21–22
Eric IV Ploughpenny
(Erik Plovpenning)
c. 1216
eldest son of Valdemar II and Berengaria of Portugal
Jutta of Saxony
17 November 1239
six children
9 August 1250
on the Schlei
aged 33–34
1 November
c. 1218
second son of Valdemar II and Berengaria of Portugal
Matilda of Holstein
25 April 1237
Schleswig Cathedral
four children
29 June 1252
aged 33–34
Christopher I
(Christoffer 1.)
25 December
c. 1219
third son of Valdemar II and Berengaria of Portugal
Margaret Sambiria
c. 1248
five children
29 May 1259
aged 39–40
Eric V Klipping
(Erik Klipping)
c. 1249
eldest son of Christopher I and Margaret Sambiria
Agnes of Brandenburg
11 November 1273
Schleswig Cathedral
seven children
22 November 1286
aged 36–37
Eric VI Menved
(Erik Menved)
c. 1274
eldest son of Eric V and Agnes of Brandenburg
Ingeborg of Sweden
June 1296
Kärnan Castle
fourteen children
13 November 1319
aged 44–45
Christopher II
(Christoffer 2.)
25 January
29 September 1276
second son of Eric V and Agnes of Brandenburg
Euphemia of Pomerania
c. 1300
six children
2 August 1332
Nykøbing Castle
aged 55
(Erik Christoffersen)
c. 1307
eldest son of Christopher II and Euphemia of Pomerania
Elizabeth of Holstein-Rendsburg
no issue
early 1332
aged c. 25
Valdemar III
(Valdemar 3.)
c. 1314
only son of Eric II, Duke of Schleswig and Adelaide of Holstein-Rendsburg
Richardis of Schwerin
two sons
c. 1364
aged 49–50
Christopher II
(Christoffer 2.)
29 September 1276
second son of Eric V and Agnes of Brandenburg
Euphemia of Pomerania
c. 1300
six children
2 August 1332
Nykøbing Castle
aged 55
(Erik Christoffersen)
c. 1307
eldest son of Christopher II and Euphemia of Pomerania
Elizabeth of Holstein-Rendsburg
no issue
early 1332
aged c. 25
Interregnum (1332–1340)
Valdemar IV Atterdag
(Valdemar Atterdag)
21 June
c. 1320
third son of Christopher II and Euphemia of Pomerania
Helvig of Schleswig
c. 1340
Sønderborg Castle
six children
24 October 1375
Gurre Castle
aged 54–55

House of Bjelbo

Name Portrait Birth Marriages Death
Olaf II
(Oluf 2.)
3 May
December 1370
Akershus Castle
only son of Haakon VI of Norway and Margaret I
never married 23 August 1387
Falsterbo Castle
aged 16

House of Estridsen

Name Portrait Birth Marriages Death
Margaret I
(Margrete 1.)
1376–1412 (de facto)
c.  1353
Vordingborg Castle
youngest daughter of Valdemar IV and Helvig of Schleswig
Haakon VI of Norway
9 April 1363
Church of Our Lady
one son
28 October 1412
Ship on Flensburg Fjord
aged 58–59

House of Pomerania

Name Portrait Birth Marriages Death
Eric VII
(Erik af Pommern)
17 June
c. 1381/82
Rügenwalde Castle (Poland)
only son of Polish Duke of Pomerania Wartislaw VII and Mary of Mecklenburg-Schwerin
Philippa of England
26 October 1406
Lund Cathedral
no issue
3 May 1459
Rügenwalde Castle (Poland)
aged 76–78

House of Palatinate-Neumarkt

Name Portrait Birth Marriages Death
Christopher III
(Christoffer af Bayern)
9 April 1440–
5/6 January 1448
26 February 1416
Neumarkt in der Oberpfalz
fifth son of John, Count Palatine of Neumarkt and Catherine of Pomerania
Dorothea of Brandenburg
12 September 1445
no issue
5/6 January 1448
Kärnan Castile
aged 31

House of Oldenburg

Name Portrait Birth Marriages Death
Christian I
28 September 1448–
21 May 1481
February 1426
eldest son of Dietrich, Count of Oldenburg and Helvig of Schauenburg
Dorothea of Brandenburg
28 October 1449
Church of Our Lady
five children
21 May 1481
Copenhagen Castle
aged 55
2 February 1455
Aalborghus Castle
third son of Christian I and Dorothea of Brandenburg
Christina of Saxony
6 September 1478
five children
20 February 1513
Aalborghus Castle
aged 58
Christian II
1 July 1481
Nyborg Castle
second son of John and Christina of Saxony
Isabella of Austria
12 August 1515
six children
25 January 1559
Kalundborg Castle
aged 77
Frederick I
7 October 1471
Haderslevhus Castle
fourth son of Christian I and Dorothea of Brandenburg
(1) Anna of Brandenburg
10 April 1502
two children
(2) Sophie of Pomerania
9 October 1518
Kiel Castle
six children
10 April 1533
Gottorp Castle
aged 61
Interregnum (1533–1534)
Christian III
4 July
12 August 1503
Gottorp Castle
only son of Frederick I and Anna of Brandenburg
Dorothea of Saxe-Lauenburg
29 October 1525
Lauenburg Castle
five children
1 January 1559
Koldinghus Castle
aged 55
Frederick II
1 July 1534
Haderslevhus Castle
eldest son of Christian III and Dorothea of Saxe-Lauenburg
Sophie of Mecklenburg-Güstrow
20 July 1572
eight children
4 April 1588
Antvorskov Castle
aged 53
Christian IV
12 April 1577
Frederiksborg Palace
eldest son of Frederick II and Sophie of Mecklenburg-Güstrow
(1) Anne Catherine of Brandenburg
27 November 1597
Haderslevhus Castle
seven children
(2) Kirsten Munk
31 December 1615
twelve children
28 February 1648
Rosenborg Castle
aged 70
Frederick III
18 March 1609
Haderslevhus Castle
third son of Christian IV and Anne Catherine of Brandenburg
Sophie Amalie of Brunswick-Lüneburg
1 October 1643
Glücksburg Castle
eight children
9 February 1670
Copenhagen Castle
aged 60
Christian V
9 February 1670–
25 August 1699
15 April 1646
Duborg Castle
eldest son of Frederick III and Sophie Amalie of Brunswick-Lüneburg
Charlotte Amalie of Hesse-Kassel
25 June 1667
Nykøbing Castle
eight children
25 August 1699
Copenhagen Castle
aged 53
Frederick IV
25 August 1699–
12 October 1730
11 October 1671
Copenhagen Castle
eldest son of Christian V and Charlotte Amalie of Hesse-Kassel
(1) Louise of Mecklenburg-Güstrow
5 December 1695
five children
(2) Elisabeth Helene von Vieregg
6 September 1703
one son
(3) Anne Sophie Reventlow
4 April 1721
three children
12 October 1730
Odense Palace
aged 59
Christian VI
12 October 1730–
6 August 1746
30 November 1699
Copenhagen Castle
second son of Frederick IV and Louise of Mecklenburg-Güstrow
Sophia Magdalene of Brandenburg-Kulmbach
7 August 1721
Pretzsch Castle
three children
6 August 1746
Hirschholm Palace
aged 46
Frederick V
6 August 1746–
14 January 1766
31 March 1723
Copenhagen Castle
only son of Christian VI and Sophia Magdalene of Brandenburg-Kulmbach
(1) Louise of Great Britain
11 December 1743
five children
(2) Juliana Maria of Brunswick-Wolfenbüttel
8 July 1752
Frederiksborg Palace
one son
14 January 1766
Christiansborg Palace
aged 42
Christian VII
14 January 1766–
13 March 1808
29 January 1749
Christiansborg Palace
second son of Frederick V and Louise of Great Britain
Caroline Matilda of Great Britain
8 November 1766
Christiansborg Palace
two children
13 March 1808
aged 59
Frederick VI
13 March 1808–
3 December 1839
28 January 1768
Christiansborg Palace
only son of Christian VII and Caroline Matilda of Great Britain
Marie Sophie of Hesse-Kassel
31 July 1790
Gottorp Castle
eight children
3 December 1839
Amalienborg Palace
aged 70
Christian VIII
3 December 1839–
20 January 1848
18 September 1786
Christiansborg Palace
eldest son of Frederick, Hereditary Prince of Denmark and Sophia Frederica of Mecklenburg-Schwerin
(1) Charlotte Frederica of Mecklenburg-Schwerin
21 June 1806
Ludwigslust Castle
two sons
(2) Caroline Amalie of Schleswig-Holstein-Sonderburg-Augustenburg
22 May 1815
Augustenborg Palace
no issue
20 January 1848
Amalienborg Palace
aged 61
Frederick VII
20 January 1848–
15 November 1863
6 October 1808
Amalienborg Palace
second son of Christian VIII and Charlotte Frederica of Mecklenburg-Schwerin
(1) Vilhelmine Marie of Denmark
1 November 1828
Christiansborg Palace
no issue
(2) Caroline of Mecklenburg
10 June 1841
no issue
(3) Louise Rasmussen
7 August 1850
Frederiksborg Palace
no issue
15 November 1863
Glücksburg Castle
aged 55

House of Schleswig-Holstein-Sonderburg-Glücksburg

Name Portrait Birth Marriages Death Biography Relationship with predecessor
Christian IX
15 November 1863–
29 January 1906
8 April 1818
Gottorf Castle
fourth son of Friedrich Wilhelm, Duke of Schleswig-Holstein-Sonderburg-Glücksburg and Princess Louise Caroline of Hesse-Kassel
Louise of Hesse-Kassel
26 May 1842
Amalienborg Palace
six children
29 January 1906
Amalienborg Palace
aged 87
[13] Great-great-great-great-great-great-great grandson of King Christian III
Frederick VIII
29 January 1906–
14 May 1912
3 June 1843
Yellow Palace
eldest son of Christian IX and Louise of Hesse-Kassel
Louise of Sweden
28 July 1869
eight children
14 May 1912
Jungfernstieg park, Hamburg
aged 68
[14] Son of King Christian IX
Christian X
14 May 1912–
20 April 1947
26 September 1870
Charlottenlund Palace
eldest son of Frederick VIII and Louise of Sweden
Alexandrine of Mecklenburg-Schwerin
26 April 1898
two sons
20 April 1947
Amalienborg Palace
aged 76
[15] Son of King Frederick VIII
Frederick IX
20 April 1947–
14 January 1972
11 March 1899
Sorgenfri Palace
eldest son of Christian X and Alexandrine of Mecklenburg-Schwerin
Ingrid of Sweden
24 May 1935
Storkyrkan Cathedral, Stockholm
three daughters
14 January 1972
Amalienborg Palace
aged 72
[16] Son of King Christian X
Margrethe II
14 January 1972–
16 April 1940
Amalienborg Palace
eldest daughter of Frederick IX and Ingrid of Sweden
Henri de Laborde de Monpezat
10 June 1967
Holmens Kirke, Copenhagen
two sons
Incumbent [17] Daughter of King Frederick IX


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  9. ^
  10. ^
  11. ^
  12. ^ Skovgaard-Petersen, Inge (2003). "The Making of the Danish Kingdom". In Helle, Knut. The Cambridge History of Scandinavia: Prehistory to 1520. Cambridge University Press. p. 174.  
  13. ^ "Christian IX". Official website of the Danish Monarchy. Retrieved 2010-12-21. 
  14. ^ "Frederik VIII". Official website of the Danish Monarchy. Retrieved 2010-12-21. 
  15. ^ "Christian X". Official website of the Danish Monarchy. Retrieved 2010-12-21. 
  16. ^ "Frederik IX". Official website of the Danish Monarchy. Retrieved 2010-12-21. 
  17. ^ "HM The Queen". Official website of the Danish Monarchy. Retrieved 2010-12-21. 

Further reading

  • "Royal Lineage" Royal Family - The Monarchy in Denmark.
    • "Kongerækken" Kongehuset.

External links

  • History of the Danish royal titles based on contemporary documents

See also

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