Prince Valdemar of Denmark

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Prince Valdemar
Portrait of Prince Valdemar, 1936
Born(1858-10-27)27 October 1858
Bernstorff Palace, Gentofte
Died14 January 1939(1939-01-14) (aged 80)
The Yellow Palace, Copenhagen
(m. 1885; died 1909)
FatherChristian IX of Denmark
MotherLouise of Hesse-Kassel
Military career
AllegianceDenmark Denmark
Service/branch Royal Danish Navy

Prince Valdemar of Denmark (27 October 1858 – 14 January 1939) was a member of the Danish royal family. He was the third son and youngest child of Christian IX of Denmark and Louise of Hesse-Kassel. He had a lifelong naval career.

Early life[edit]

Prince Valdemar with his father Christian IX of Denmark

Prince Valdemar was born on 27 October 1858 at Bernstorff Palace in Gentofte north of Copenhagen.[1] His father was Prince Christian of Denmark, later King Christian IX. His mother was Princess Louise of Hesse-Kassel. He was baptised on 21 December 1858. He had five older siblings: Prince Frederick (1843–1912), Princess Alexandra (1844–1925), Prince William (1845–1913), Princess Dagmar (1847–1928), and Princess Thyra (1853–1933).

Prince Valdemar grew up in an increasingly international family. Despite the fact that the family had limited resources available and lived a relatively bourgeois life by royal standards, Valdemar's siblings managed to enter into some dynastically important marriages. In March 1863, the Danish royal family, including four-year-old Valdemar, travelled to London for the wedding of his eldest sister, Princess Alexandra, to the Prince of Wales, the son and heir-apparent of Queen Victoria. In June of the same year, Prince Valdemar's older brother Prince William was installed as King of Greece under the name of George I. And in November of the same year, his father succeeded to the throne of Denmark as King Christian IX following the death of King Frederick VII.

Prince Valdemar received his early education from tutors. In the summer of 1874, he accompanied his father during his visit to Iceland for the millennium celebrations. After his confirmation in 1874, as was customary for princes at that time, he started a military education and entered the naval college. In 1879, he was sub-lieutenant and in 1880 lieutenant. In the following years, he participated in several naval expeditions. Valdemar was homosexual,[2] and from 1883 lived at Bernstorff Palace near Copenhagen with his nephew Prince George of Greece, who'd been taken as a boy to Denmark to be enlisted in the Danish royal navy, and be consigned to the care of Valdemar, who was an admiral in the Danish fleet. Feeling abandoned by his father on this occasion, George would later describe to his fiancée the profound attachment he developed for his uncle from that day forward.[3]


Prince Valdemar's wife Princess Marie of Orléans.

He married Princess Marie d'Orleans on 20 October 1885 in a civil ceremony in Paris.[4] They had a religious ceremony on 22 October 1885 at the Château d'Eu, the residence of Prince Philippe, Count of Paris.[4] The wedding was believed by one source to have been politically arranged, and in France, it was believed that the Count of Paris (the bride's uncle) was personally responsible for the match.[4] However, the same source claimed that "there was every reason to believe that [it was] a genuine love match".[4] At the time of their marriage, it was decided that any sons would be brought up in Valdemar's Lutheran faith, while any daughters would be raised as Catholics, the faith of their mother.[5] The couple's four sons were consequently Lutherans, while their only daughter, Margaret was raised a Catholic and married a Catholic prince.[5] In 1886 the Bulgarian throne was offered to Prince Valdemar, but he and Marie agreed to refuse.

Later life[edit]

Prince Valdemar with King Chulalongkorn of Siam.

Valdemar had a lifelong naval career. He was the first president of the Seamen's Association of 1856.

He died on 14 January 1939 in the Yellow Palace in Copenhagen and was buried in Roskilde Cathedral. He was the last surviving child of Christian IX.

Coat of Arms of Prince Valdemar of Danemark


Danish orders and decorations[6]
Foreign orders and decorations[6]


Name Birth Death Spouse Children
Prince Aage of Denmark 10 June 1887 19 February 1940 Mathilde Calvi Count Valdemar of Rosenborg
Prince Axel of Denmark 12 August 1888 14 July 1964 Princess Margaretha of Sweden Prince Georg of Denmark
Count Flemming of Rosenborg
Prince Erik of Denmark 8 November 1890 10 September 1950 Lois Booth Countess Alexandra of Rosenborg
Count Christian of Rosenborg
Prince Viggo of Denmark 25 December 1893 4 January 1970 Eleanor Margaret Green No children
Princess Margaret of Denmark 17 September 1895 18 September 1992 Prince René of Bourbon-Parma Prince Jacques of Bourbon-Parma
Queen Anne of Romania
Prince Michel of Bourbon-Parma
Prince André of Bourbon-Parma




  1. ^ Montgomery-Massingberd, Hugh (1977). Burke's Royal Families of the World. Vol. 1. London: Burke's Peerage. ISBN 0-220-66222-3., p. 69.
  2. ^ Élisabeth Roudinesco, Freud: In His Time and Ours, Harvard University Press, 2016, p310
  3. ^ Bertin, Celia (1982). "A False Happiness". Marie Bonaparte: A Life. New York: Harcourt Brace Jovanovich. pp. 85–86. ISBN 0-15-157252-6. From that day, from that moment on, I loved him and I have never had any other friend but him...You will love him too, when you meet him.
  4. ^ a b c d "Royal Marriage Bells", The New York Times, Eu, France, 22 October 1885
  5. ^ a b Finestone, p. 199.
  6. ^ a b Bille-Hansen, A. C.; Holck, Harald, eds. (1933) [1st pub.:1801]. Statshaandbog for Kongeriget Danmark for Aaret 1933 [State Manual of the Kingdom of Denmark for the Year 1933] (PDF). Kongelig Dansk Hof- og Statskalender (in Danish). Copenhagen: J.H. Schultz A.-S. Universitetsbogtrykkeri. pp. 15, 18. Retrieved 24 December 2019 – via da:DIS Danmark.
  7. ^ "A Szent István Rend tagjai" Archived 22 December 2010 at the Wayback Machine
  8. ^ Royal Decree of 22 July 1897
  9. ^ Italia : Ministero dell'interno (1898). Calendario generale del Regno d'Italia. Unione tipografico-editrice. p. 54.
  10. ^ 刑部芳則 (2017). 明治時代の勲章外交儀礼 (PDF) (in Japanese). 明治聖徳記念学会紀要. p. 149.
  11. ^ Norway (1908), "Den kongelige norske Sanct Olavs Orden", Norges Statskalender (in Norwegian), p. 869-870, retrieved 17 September 2021
  12. ^ Sveriges statskalender (in Swedish), 1905, p. 440, retrieved 2018-01-06 – via
  13. ^ "No. 27356". The London Gazette. 17 September 1901. p. 6101.
  14. ^ Hof- und Staats-Handbuch des Großherzogtum Baden (1896), "Großherzogliche Orden" pp. 63, 77


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