Queen Margrethe of Denmark Turns 80 | PEOPLE.com

A series of events planned by the Danish royal family to celebrate the Queen's birthday were canceled due to the coronavirus pandemic

By Conchita Margaret Widjojo
April 16, 2020 01:59 PM
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Credit: Per Morten Abrahamsen

Happy birthday to Queen Margrethe of Denmark!

The Danish monarch turned 80 on Thursday, and though the public celebrations planned in honor of her birthday were canceled due to the coronavirus, members of her family and well-wishers around the country made sure to pay tribute to the Queen on her milestone birthday.

The official Danish royal family’s Instagram uploaded multiple posts to commemorate the Queen’s birthday, including one from the portrait series taken by Per Morten Abrahamsen of her standing in the palace gardens with her pet dog in front of Fredensborg Palace, the royal family’s spring and fall residence.

Queen Margrethe of Denmark
| Credit: Kongehuset
Queen Margrethe of Denmark
| Credit: Kongehuset

“Her Majesty the Queen has a birthday and is now 80 years old,” the caption said in Danish. “On the round, the Queen celebrates at Fredensborg Castle, and throughout the day it is possible to send congratulations to the Majesty from the Royal House website.”

The staff at Fredensborg — who practiced social distancing — greeted the Queen with a song in the morning as they serenaded her while she watched from the balcony overlooking the grand hall.

“This morning it was in the Dome Hall at Fredensborg Castle, where the staff of the castle sang morning songs for Her Majesty the Queen at a good distance,” the post was captioned. “Afterwards, the Queen thanked her for the song.”

Additionally, all of Queen Margrethe’s beloved grandchildren (all eight of them!) banded together for a sweet group effort to wish their matriarch a happy birthday through a video message.

The clip first shows Prince Joachim and Alexandra, Countess of Fredericksborg’s children, Prince Nikolai, 20, and his brother Prince Felix, 17, giving their grandmother their wishes before switching to their younger siblings Prince Henrik, 10, and Princess Athena, 8.

Then, the second half of the clip shows Crown Prince Frederik and Crown Princess Mary’s four children, Prince Christian, 14, Princess Isabella, 12, and 9-year-old twins Prince Vincent and Princess Josephine sitting down on steps and holding up letters that read “Tillykke” (which approximately translates to happy birthday) before saying it themselves.

Prince Frederik is currently first in line for the Danish throne, followed by his eldest son Prince Christian.

Last but not least, royal families from all across Europe recorded sweet messages for the Queen, who they call “Aunt Daisy” in the video. Royals from Crown Princess Victoria and Prince Daniel of Sweden to King Felipe and Queen Letizia of Spain to King Willem-Alexander and Queen Maxima of the Netherlands all took the time to record a thoughtful birthday message (in languages ranging from English to Swedish to French) in honor of the Danish monarch’s 80th birthday.

On Tuesday, the Danish royal family released new portraits of Queen Margrethe, Crown Prince Frederik and grandson Prince Christian on its official Instagram account in honor of the monarch’s birthday.

Crown Prince Frederik, Queen Margrethe and Prince Christian
| Credit: Per Morten Abrahamsen

The images, which were taken by Per Morten Abrahamsen in the fall and winter of 2019, feature the Queen wearing a long-sleeved purple dress with a floral brooch posing with Frederik and Christian in coordinating suits at Christian IX’s Mansion at Amalienborg as well as at Fredensborg Castle. The photos were the first three in a series of new portraits of the Queen and her family.

All the events planned to commemorate Queen’s 80th birthday throughout the month of April were canceled due to the coronavirus pandemic. On March 12, the Danish royal court released a statement announcing the news.

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“In light of the spread of COVID-19 and the consequences of this for the society, The Queen has decided to cancel all of the Royal Danish House’s planned activities and events in connection with the upcoming 80th birthday in April,” the statement read. “The royal family’s participation in other items on the official program in the coming weeks is also cancelled.”

Additionally, in honor of her birthday, Queen Margrethe traditionally receives flowers from her supporters every year. However, this year, she ask that people send a bouquet to older citizens who may be facing a difficult time instead.