Putin offers condolences to Queen of Denmark over death of Prince Henrik

Putin offers condolences to Queen of Denmark over death of Prince Henrik

Putin offers condolences to Queen of Denmark over death of Prince Henrik

Prince Henrik in 1974.

The prince made headlines for his displeasure with the title he was given after marrying Queen Margrethe.

Denmark's Prince Henrik, the French-born husband of Queen Margrethe II, has died at the age 83, after a half-century struggle to win the hearts of Danes that only succeeded in his later years.

Prince Henrik caused a stir in 2002 when Crown Prince Frederik replaced Henrik to represent the Queen at a New Year's ceremony. He was 83, and had been diagnosed with a benign tumor two weeks ago, Reuters reported. "I wish you and all members of the Danish royal family courage and fortitude at this hard time", Putin wrote in a telegram. The queen already had a designed-just-for-them sarcophagus at Roskilde Cathedral in Denmark.

Henrik had been diagnosed with dementia last September and was recently hospitalised for a lung infection. Earlier in the day, Henrik was moved from a Copenhagen hospital to the family's residence north of the capital, where the royal palace said he wished "to spend his last moments".

Henrik is survived by his wife, sons Crown Prince Frederik and Prince Joachim, and eight grandchildren.

Henri became Henrik and converted to Denmark's state Lutheran Church.

Teased for his French accent and unable to understand why protocol required him to remain in his wife's shadow, Henrik never really found his place in Denmark. In Denmark, if a princess is given the title of Queen, her husband does not automatically gain the title of king.

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The royal families in neighbouring Sweden and Denmark sent condolences.

Prince Henrik is pictured on the royal balcony.

The law was eventually changed to give him roughly 10 percent of the annual allocation Parliament makes to royals each year.

He said he felt "pushed aside, degraded and humiliated", and "disappointed all the time and walked over in such a way that my self-respect is destroyed".

Henri, as he was then known, spent his first five years in Vietnam while his father was employed there. He was made Prince Consort in 2005, and in 2008, both of Margrethe and Henrik's sons were conferred the title "Count of Monpezat".

Margrethe and Henrik also owned a chateau in southwestern France where they retreated every summer.

In August 2017, Henrik announced he did not wish to be buried next to the queen, breaking a 459-year-old tradition.

With reporting from AAP and AP.

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