His Royal Highness Prince Henrik of Denmark, the husband of Queen Margrethe II of Denmark, has been diagnosed with dementia, the Danish Royal Court announced.
A series of examinations have been conducted during the late summer, and a team of specialists from the Rigshospitalet has now concluded that Prince Henrik suffers from dementia. The diagnosis implies a decline in Prince Henrik’s cognitive functional level and the extent of the cognitive failure is greater than expected considering Prince Henrik’s age. This can be accompanied by changes in behaviour, reaction patterns, judgement and emotional life and the interaction with the outside world.
As a consequence, Prince Henrik will further downgrade his future activities, such as where patronages and honorary membership are considered. The Queen and the Royal Family have asked that Prince Henrik should have the peace and quiet as required by the situation.
Prince Henrik of Denmark has been married to the then Princess Margrethe since 1967, and the couple has two sons, Crown Prince Frederik (born 1968) and Prince Joachim (born 1969) and eight grandchildren. Margrethe II succeeded as Queen of Denmark upon the death of her father in 1972. Prince Henrik has often complained about not being King, as the wives of Kings are usually Queens. In 2005, he was given the title “Prince Consort”, which he gave up in 2016 as part of his retirement. Henrik said in an interview, “It angers me that I am discriminated against. Denmark, which is seemingly known as an avid defender of gender equality, apparently, is ready to be considered useless husbands their wives.”
The change in title was at first not officially announced, but he was listed on his biography page of the Danish Royal Family’s official website as simply ‘Prins Henrik’ and also on the guest list for the Mexican state visit gala. It was later confirmed by Lene Balleby, to TV2.
“Prince Henrik in his desire – in continuation of his retirement – changed his title to the less formal Prince Henrik. HRH seems that the title is better suited to his current situation as a pensioner,” she told the media outlet.