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Queen Margrethe II, Queen Anne-Marie and Princess Benedikte attend the Changing of the Guard at Graasten Castle

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It’s a tradition, every Friday a special changing of the guard takes place in front of Graasten Castle when Queen Margrethe II occupies the premises. The castle is used by the Queen of Denmark mainly during summer holidays. This Friday, Queen Margrethe II was surrounded by her sisters to observe the changing of the guard from the doorstep of the castle.

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The Special Friday Changing of the Guard at Graasten Castle

The changing of the guard takes place at regular intervals in front of most royal palaces in Europe. There are certain traditions specific to each country and each palace. In Denmark, when Queen Margrethe II resides at Graasten Castle, a more special changing of the guard is organized on Fridays. During this changing of the guard, a musical corps is present and the public is invited to gather in front of the entrance to the castle to observe this military spectacle.

In reality, two bands take part in the changing of the guard. The musical corps of the royal guards is accompanied by the tambourine corps. This Friday, Queen Margrethe II was enjoying the company of her two younger sisters at Graasten Castle when they decided to interrupt their activities to observe the changing of the guard.

Read also: The Danish royal family in front of the tomb of King Frederick IX for the Golden Jubilee of Margrethe II

The three sisters witness the changing of the guard with the visitors

Queen Margrethe II, 82, Princess Benedikte, 78, and Queen Anne-Marie, 75, came out on the castle doorstep, barely dressed. The three daughters of King Frederick IX wore casual outfits. They greeted the visitors from afar, who on the other side of the courtyard were watching the changing of the special guard.

Graasten Castle, located not far from Sonderbourg, is a former royal family hunting lodge, which in the 1930s became the summer residence of King Frederick IX and Queen Ingrid. Margrethe, having kept childhood memories with her sisters in these places, decided to perpetuate the tradition and to come and settle there too during the holidays.

Graasten Castle is a former hunting lodge that became the official summer residence of Danish rulers (Photo: Kongehuset)

Princess Benedikte works full-time for the Crown, receiving an annuity to fund her commitments. Anne-Marie is the youngest of the sisters. She became Queen of the Hellenes on her marriage to King Constantine II of Greece in 1964. The sister-in-law of Queen Sofia of Spain, who had been living a peaceful life in Porto-Héli for some years with her husband, recently moved in Athens to bring the former king closer to health facilities. Anne-Marie also returns punctually to Denmark with her sisters.

Queen Margrethe II, Princess Benedikte and Queen Anne-Marie during their vacation in Graasten in 2021 (Photo: Kongehuset)

Nicholas Fontaine

Chief Editor

Nicolas Fontaine has been a freelance web editor since 2014. After having been a copywriter and author for numerous Belgian and French brands and media, he specialized in royalty news. Nicolas is now editor-in-chief of Histoires royales. [email protected]