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Queen Maud (1869 -1938)

Queen Maud was born in London on 26 November 1869. Christened Maud Charlotte Mary Victoria, she was the daughter of the Prince of Wales and the Princess of Wales (born Princess Alexandra of Denmark), later King Edward VII and Queen Alexandra of the United Kingdom.

Princess Maud attended regular family gatherings in Denmark, where she came to know her cousin, Prince Carl of Denmark, well. They were married in Buckingham Palace on 22 July 1896, and settled in Copenhagen. Their son and only child, Prince Alexander, was born at Appleton House in Norfolk, England, on 2 July 1903.

Life as Queen

The fact that Princess Maud was the daughter of the ruling monarch of the UK was an influential factor in the Storting’s decision to offer Prince Carl the Norwegian throne in 1905. The prince accepted and Princess Maud became Norway’s first queen after the dissolution of the union with Sweden.

The King and Queen arrived in Norway on 25 November 1905, and were crowned in Nidaros Cathedral on 22 June 1906.

The Queen had many official engagements to fulfil, and was renowned for always being exquisitely dressed. Her exceptionally elegant wardrobe has been the object of a number of recent exhibitions.

The Queen carried out much of her work outside the public eye. She undertook a range of social and cultural activities and was dedicated to supporting charitable causes. In 1914 she took the initiative to establish a fund in her name to assist people in extremely difficult circumstances following WWI.

The Queen was in many ways a reserved person, and in public she often appeared shy. However, in private she was known for being warm and vivacious. She was very involved in Crown Prince Olav’s upbringing, and sought to make him a thoroughly Norwegian boy, although she herself never became fluent in Norwegian.

The Queen enjoyed outdoor recreational activities, spending a great deal of time riding, walking her dogs or skiing – a sport to which she was introduced by polar explorer Fridtjof Nansen. She also enjoyed dancing and was a keen amateur photographer.

The Queen maintained close ties to England throughout her lifetime, with an extended stay there each year. The Queen’s – and by extension the Norwegian Royal Family’s – close ties to the UK were of pivotal importance to Norway during WWII.

Funeral

Queen Maud died in London on 20 November 1938, and was buried in the Royal Mausoleum at Akershus Castle.

08.01.2011

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