“I will hand over the throne to my son, Crown Prince Frederik,” the queen, who was sitting at a table and reading from a statement during an evening broadcast to the nation, said.
Her 55-year-old son will become King Frederick X, and his Australian-born wife, Crown Princess Mary, will become queen.
In her speech, Margaret said she believed the time was right to pass up the baton. She referred to the back surgery she underwent this year, saying that it “naturally led to thinking about the future, and whether the time had come to leave responsibility to the next generation.” “I decided now was the right time,” she said.
“Time takes its toll, and the number of ‘diseases’ is increasing. One cannot do as much as they could in the past,” she said.
An eloquent and popular Queen, Margaret is Europe's longest-serving monarch after the death of Britain's Queen Elizabeth II in 2022.
Margaret is known for her love of archaeology, having been involved in excavations in several countries and studying prehistoric archeology at Cambridge University. She also studied at Aarhus University, the Sorbonne, and the London School of Economics. She is also known for her artistic endeavors, including work as an illustrator and as a costume and production designer.
In 2022, the Queen caused an uproar when she moved to reduce the size of the Danish royal family by stripping four of her grandchildren of their royal titles. She later said she underestimated how her family would feel about her decision, but nonetheless said it was a “necessary vindication for the future of the monarchy.”
Danish Prime Minister Mette Frederiksen thanked the Queen for her long service.
“It is still difficult to understand that now is the time to change the throne,” Frederiksen said in a statement. “Many of us have never known another monarch before. Queen Margrethe is the epitome of Denmark, and over the years she has put words and sentiment into our identity as a people and as a nation.