Dagmar of Denmark

From Academic Kids

Missing image
Maria Fyodorovna and Alexander III posing during a sojourn in Denmark in 1893.
Template:House of Oldenburg (Glucksburg-Denmark)

Princess Marie Sophie Frederikke Dagmar (November 26, 1847 - October 13, 1928) was born as the second daughter of Louise of Hesse and Christian of Glucksburg. Her father soon became a hereditary prince of Denmark, mostly on basis of her mother's succession rights.

Most of her life, she was known as Maria Fedorovna (in Russian Мария Фёдоровна) which name she took when converting to the Orthodoxy immediately before her marriage to the future Tsar Alexander III. She was the mother of the last Russian Tsar Nicholas II of the Romanov Dynasty. She was baptized Lutheran and born as a daughter of relatively impoverished princely cadet line. Her father became King of Denmark six days after her marriage. Due to the brilliant marriages of his children, he was known as the "Father-in-law of Europe."

She was a younger sister of Alexandra, Queen Consort of King Edward VII and mother of George V of the United Kingdom. This helps to explain why there is such a striking resemblance between Nicholas II and George V of the United Kingdom.


Her father became king of Denmark only after her marriage. At the time of her marriage, his father was HRH Prince Christian of Schleswig-Holstein-Sonderburg-Glucksburg, hereditary prince of Denmark (the last title, and HRH epithet granted by a recent Danish succession law settling the succession to him and the children of his marriage with Louise of Hesse after the possible extinction of the male line of the yet living Frederick VII and that of Frederick V).

  1. At birth: HSH Princess of Schleswig-Holstein-Sonderburg-Glucksburg
  2. After the new succession law: HRH Princess of Schleswig-Holstein-Sonderburg-Glucksburg
  3. After wedding: HIH Grand Duchess of Russia, Princess of Schleswig-Holstein-Sonderburg-Glucksburg
  4. After father's accession: HIH Grand Duchess of Russia, Royal Princess of Denmark, Princess of Schleswig-Holstein-Sonderburg-Glucksburg
  5. After husband's accession: HIM Empress of All Russias etc, Royal Princess of Denmark, Princess of Schleswig-Holstein-Sonderburg-Glucksburg
  6. After husband's death, until own death: HIM The Empress Dowager of All Russias etc, Royal Princess of Denmark, Princess of Schleswig-Holstein-Sonderburg-Glucksburg

Adult life

She was married to Alexander III. Pretty and popular, Maria Fyodorovna rarely interfered with politics, preferring to devote her time and energies to her family, to her charities, and to the more social side of her position. Her one exception to this "hands off" policy was her militant dislike of Germany.

Despite the overthrow of the monarchy (1917), the Empress Maria at first refused to leave Russia: it was only in 1919, at the urging of her sister Alexandra, that she grudgingly departed. After a brief visit to London, she returned to her native Denmark, choosing as her home Hvidøre, her former holiday villa near Copenhagen. There she remained until her death in 1928; following services in Copenhagen's Orthodox church, she was interred at Roskilde Cathedral. As of this writing (May, 2005), following years of negotiations between the Danish and Russian governments, permission has been granted for the Empress's remains to be returned to St. Petersburg, where seventy-seven years after her death, she will finally be interred next to her beloved husband.

Plays and films aside, Maria Fedorovna never met any of the Anastasia claimants; indeed, to the end of her life, she refused to acknowledge that the massacre of her son, daughter-in-law, and grandchildren had ever taken place.

The children of Tsar Alexander III and Maria Fedorovna:

fr:Dagmar de Danemark nl:Dagmar van Denemarken


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