Her godparents were King Christian X of Denmark, Prince Knud of Denmark, Prince Axel of Denmark, King Gustaf V of Sweden, Crown Prince Gustaf Adolf of Sweden, Prince Gustaf Adolf of Sweden, The Duke of Connaught.
Queen Margrethe II's official motto is: The Help of God, the Love of the People, the Strength of Denmark.
The process of changing the constitution started in 1947, when it became clear that Queen Ingrid would have no more children. At this time, Margrethe's uncle Prince Knud was the Heir Presumptive, but the popularity of Frederik and his daughters and the more prominent role of women in Danish life started the complicated process of altering the constitution. That proposal had to be passed by two Parliaments in succession and then by a referendum, which was held on 27 March 1953. The new Act of Succession permitted female succession to the throne of Denmark, according to male-preference primogeniture, similar to that in use in the United Kingdom. Princess Margrethe therefore became the Heiress Presumptive. On her eighteenth birthday, 16 April 1958, the Heiress Presumptive was given a seat in the Council of State, and the Princess subsequently chaired the meetings of the Council in the absence of the King.
She studied prehistoric archaeology at Girton College, Cambridge during 1960-61, political science at Aarhus University between 1961-1962, at the Sorbonne in 1963, and at the London School of Economics in 1965.
On 10 June 1967, Princess Margrethe of Denmark married a French diplomat, Henri de Laborde de Monpezat, at the Naval Church. Laborde de Monpezat received the style and title of "His Royal Highness Prince Henrik of Denmark" because of his new position as the spouse of the Heiress Presumptive to the Danish throne. Two children were produced from this union:
In mid-1960, together with the Princesses of Sweden and Norway, she traveled to the United States, which included a visit to Los Angeles, California, and to the Paramount Studios, where they were met by several celebrities, including Dean Martin, Jerry Lewis and, most notably, Elvis Presley. She is an accomplished artist and costume designer. She suffers from arthritis and has had both her knees replaced as a result.
After consultation with representatives of the political parties, the leader of the party which holds the largest number of seats in the Danish parliament is invited to form a new government. Once it has been formed, the monarch formally appoints it. Additionally, it is the queen who is the real head of the government and therefore presides over the Council of State, where the acts of legislation which have been passed by parliament are signed into law.
The queen's main tasks are to represent the Kingdom abroad and to be a unifying figurehead at home. The queen performs the latter task by accepting invitations to open exhibitions, attending anniversaries, inaugurating bridges, etc. As an unelected public official, the queen takes no part in party politics and does not express any political opinions. In addition to her roles in her own country, the queen is also the Colonel-in-Chief of the Princess of Wales's Royal Regiment (Queen's and Royal Hampshires), an infantry regiment of the British Army, following a tradition in her family.
o The queen is an accomplished and painter, and has held many art shows over the years. It is said that were she not the queen, she could make a living as a professional artist. Her illustrations—under the pseudonym Ingahild Grathmer—were used for the Danish edition of The Lord of the Rings published in 1977 and the re-issue in 2002. She is also an accomplished translator and is said to have participated in the Danish translation of The Lord of the Rings. She also designs some of her own clothes. Margrethe is a chain smoker, and she is famous for her tobacco habit. However, on November 23, 2006 the Danish newspaper B.T. reported an announcement from the Royal Court stating that the queen would never again be seen smoking in public. Still, the queen does continue to smoke but in the future she will do so only privately. The announcement is probably due to the fact that the Danish parliament recently has decided on strict rules concerning smoking.
A statement in a 2005 authorized biography about the queen (entitled Margrethe) focused on Islam: "We are being challenged by Islam these years. Globally as well as locally. There is something impressive about people for whom religion imbues their existence, from dusk to dawn, from cradle to grave. There are also Christians who feel this way. There is something endearing about people who give themselves up completely to their faith. But there is likewise something frightening about such a totality, which also is a feature of Islam. A counterbalance has to be found, and one has to, at times, run the risk of having unflattering labels placed on you. For there are some things for which one should display no tolerance. And when we are tolerant, we must know whether it is because of convenience or conviction.
In her 1984 annual New Year's speech, the Queen of Denmark had cautioned the Danish people to remember to be kind and hospitable towards immigrants. The topics of tolerance, immigration and freedom of speech also featured in her 2006 speech.