October 15, 2005

Christian XI

Denmark is celebrating the birth of a son early Saturday morning to Crown Prince Frederik and Princess Mary. I came to the lab today and heard the news from Carsten, a Dane. 'What's his name?' I asked. This was a really silly question and I only get away with stuff like this becasue I am a foreigner. Every last pine cone in Denmark knows that the names of the Danish Kings (the world's oldest monarchy) have alternated between Christian and Frederik since Christian I took the throne in 1448. The future monarch has several names: Christian (naturally) Frederik (for his father) Henrik (his grandfather) John (Mary's father). Mary formerly Donaldson is from Tasmania and her father is a mathematics professor. She converted from her original Presbyterian church to Lutheranism, the state religion of Denmark. The Danish royal house is the oldest in the world, with an unbroken line of succession that can be traced to Canute (father of Gorm the Old), who was crowned in 917.


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