Christian X of Denmark

Christian X of Denmark

Christian X of Denmark

Christian X (*26 September 1870 in Castle Charlottenlund; † 20 April 1947 in Copenhagen) was King of Denmark from 1912 to 1947 and as Kristjan I. King of Iceland 1918 to 1944.

Christian X. was the eldest son of Frederick VIII ofDenmarkand his wife Louise of Sweden-Norway.

Easter Crisis 1920

In April 1920, King Christian broke the Easter Crisis of 1920 – perhaps the most significant event in the development of the Danish monarchy. After Denmarkhad lost in the German-Danish War, the territory of the former duchy of Schleswig to Prussia, it claimed this area until the end of the First World War. The Treaty of Versailles was held to settle the state of Schleswig membership in two referendums, one in Northern Schleswig (later Danish Jutland Office), the other in Central Schleswig (today part of the state of Schleswig-Holstein). For South Schleswig no referendum was provided as it was ruled by a German majority and should be left to the former opinion in Germany.
In the first vote was expressed by 75% for connection to Denmark and 25% for remaining with Germany. In the second zone (Central Schleswig), there was an inverse result: 80% voted for Germany and 20% in Denmark. As a result, the government decided Statsminister of Carl Theodor Zahle, fostering the integration of North Schleswig, whileCentral Schleswig would remain under German control.

In agreement with many Danish King Christian nationalists ordered his prime minister to push even a portof Schleswig resources. Zahle felt but, sinceDenmark after an earlier crisis was a constitutional monarchy since 1901, is not bound to this command. He refused to comply and which came seven days later after a heated argument back to the king.

Then the king dismissed the rest of the elected government and replaced it with a conservative interim cabinet. This led to demonstrations inDenmarkand almost a revolutionary mood, some days seemed the future of the monarchy into question. This was followed by negotiations between the king and members of the Social Democratic Party. Given the threat was over Hazard Christian X. after, dismissed the new government and appointed a compromise government to during elections could be held.

This was the last time that a reigning Danish monarch tried to prevail against his Parliament. After this crisis, Christian accepted his drastically reduced role as head of state.


On the morning of 9 April 1940 was early at 5:15 clock “Operation Weser Exercise” on. Christian X. This invasion was unthinkable just like his brother, the Norwegian King Haakon VII Although he was warned by the Danish Ambassador inBerlin, but the news was not believed. Even on the eve of the invasion, with the knowledge that had a large German naval force set course to the north, Christian attended the Royal Theatre. The next morning,Denmarkreceived the ultimatum fromGermany, to put themselves under the protection of the empire or to be overrun.Denmarkwas completely inadequate and therefore equipped to provide unable serious resistance or defend themselves. Even with British aid was not expected, the expeditionary force had sailed toNorway. The Danish commander William Wain Prior demanded Although token resistance, but was soon brought by Prime Minister and Foreign Minister Thorvald Stauning Munch silenced. The King refused therefore to order the mobilization.

At the conference atAmalienborgPalacewas the German general and chief negotiator Leonhard Kaupisch a bomber squadron flying over the palace. The ultimatum was accepted. Christian was loud Kaupisch indeed “morally broken”, but retained his dignity and called for the establishment of German bases, that there should be in the internal affairs ofDenmarkno German interference. This should Christian X. later allow you to cover the Danish resistance movement and to be deported 7,000 Jews to neutralSweden(rescue of the Danish Jews).

Unlike his brother Haakon inNorway, he did not leave the country, but remained inDenmarkand became a symbol of resistance. Become legendary, especially his rides through the streets ofCopenhagen, as a challenging reminder of his presence until he was finally made in 1943 by the German occupying forces under house arrest.

Anecdotes from the Occupation

Christian X. on, after the occupation ofDenmark9th Announced April 1940 by Nazi Germany by his courage. He ostentatiously rode every morning unarmed and without bodyguards through the streets ofCopenhagenand became a symbol of the rejection of the Danes against their German occupiers.

In 1942, the behavior of the king, even leading to a serious crisis with Germany. Hitler’s effusive telegram of congratulations to King Christian 72nd Birthday of Dear replied in writing with a dry My best thanks. BC Rex what Hitler felt as a personal insult, immediately auswies the Danish ambassador toGermany and the German ambassador inCopenhagen, Cécil of Renthe-Fink, who was considered more reluctant diplomat recalled and replaced by Werner Best. Also had to German pressure to withdraw the Danish Prime Minister Vilhelm Buhl in favor of the supposedly friendly German Erik Scavenius.

It is reported – and generally assumed to be true – that King Christian vigorously defended, as the Nazi flag at ChristiansborgCastle, the seat of the Danish Rigsdag (Reichstag), should be hoisted. The king is said to have ordered a general in the army of occupation to remove the flag. When the general refused, the king declared: “A Danish soldier will remove the flag.” The German officer said that such a soldier would be shot. King Christian, with 1.99 meters, the largest Danish royal history, replied: “I do not think. For I will be the soldier. ” Thereupon ordered the General to remove the flag immediately.

Resistance from the demonstrative Christian X against the occupiers, is probably also related to the rescue of the Danish Jews in October 1943, which does not reflect reality incurred such legend, the Danish king had ridden in protest against the persecution of Jews in the country with a Star of David on his jacket around town. This legend is also featured in the film Exodus. A variant of this legend describes the reaction of the king to the command of the German occupiers that all Jews to wear a yellow star. Christian X. replied that a Dane was as good as another. Therefore, he would be the first to wear the Star of David and expect that every loyal Dane will follow his example. The next day, the German command had been revoked. Both legends are not true, because the Jews were forced inDenmark ever to wear the yellow Star of David. The German occupation authorities granted to the occupied country in domestic affairs since the surgery Weserübung great autonomy.

Postwar period

Just a short time after the end of World War II died Christian X. on 20 April1947 inCopenhagen. He was buried at the traditional burial place of the royal family in Roskilde Cathedral. His eldest son Frederick succeeded him as King Frederik IX. on the throne.


Christian X. was married to Alexandrine of Mecklenburg-Schwerin. The couple had two sons:

  • Frederick IX. (* 11 March 1899: † 14 January 1972), King ofDenmark
  • Knut Christian (born July 27, 1900; † 14 June 1976), Prince of Denmark


Christian X. was initiated in1889 inthe Federation of the Freemasons. There he held the office of Master of the Order in the Danish Masonic Order. The mostly practiced in Scandinavia Swedish educational system is processed in Germany by the Grand National Lodge of Freemasons of Germany.

King (Denmark)

Person in World War II (Denmark)

Danish Freemasons

Freemason (19th century)

Freemason (20th century)

Carrier of the Garter

Support of the White Eagle Order

Winner of the Freedom Cross

Carrier of Dannebrogordens

Support the Order of the Elephant

Support of the Finnish Order of the White Rose (Grand Cross with chain of orders)

Winner of the Order of St. Olav (Grand Cross)

Winner of the Northern Hawk (Collane)

Knight Grand Cross of the Order of theBath

Knight of the Order of the Golden Fleece (Spain)

House of Oldenburg (Younger line of Schleswig-Holstein-Sonderburg-Glücksburg)

Born 1870

Died in 1947


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