Princess Elisabeth of Denmark — Who Famously Lived with Her Lover for Decades — Dies at 83
Princess Elisabeth of Denmark died on Tuesday, the Danish Royal Court announced Wednesday morning. She was 83.
The princess was surrounded by close friends and family at the time of her death. She was living in her childhood home, Sorgenfri Palace, in the northern suburbs of Copenhagen.
As the first cousin of Queen Margrethe of Denmark, Princess Elisabeth was 12th in line to the Danish throne. She was also distantly in line for the British throne as a dependent of King George II. Princess Elisabeth had two brothers, Count Ingolf of Rosenborg, 78, and Count Christian of Rosenborg, who passed away in 2013.
Because she never married, Princess Elisabeth was considered a pioneer by many. She lived with her lover, filmmaker Claus Hermansen, for more than 20 years until his death in 1997.
In an interview with the Danish publication, Billed Bladet, in January, the princess said: “It’s not easy to grow old. For me, the worst is not that the health fails. The worst thing is missing my dear and the many friends who are not here anymore.
“Sometimes I feel like sitting on a sidewalk when I’m sitting here in my sofa. So it may be difficult to maintain your mood.”
Princess Elisabeth was a dedicated civil servant and spent 45 years — from 1956 to 2001 — working for Denmark’s foreign affairs ministry. She had multiple international postings, including the Danish embassy in Washington, D.C., first in the 1970s and again in the 1980s.
Princess Elisabeth’s cremation services will take place at Lyngby Kirke on Monday, 25 June, at 1 p.m. The service will be led by former royal Chaplain-in-Ordinary Erik Norman Svendsen.
She will be laid to rest next to Hermansen.