House of Glücksburg

House of Glücksburg
House of
Country Germany, Denmark, Norway, Greece and Iceland
Ancestral house House of Oldenburg
Titles Duke of Schleswig-Holstein, King of Denmark, King of Norway, King of the Hellenes, and King of Iceland
Founder Friedrich Wilhelm, Duke of Glücksburg
Current head Christopher, Duke of Schleswig-Holstein
Founding 1825
The family's ancestral castle, Glücksburg Castle, in Glücksburg, Schleswig-Holstein
Christoph, Duke of Schleswig-Holstein, current head of the House of Glücksburg and the entire House of Oldenburg

The House of Schleswig-Holstein-Sonderburg-Glücksburg (Danish: Slesvig-Holsten-Sønderborg-Lyksborg, the latter name is also spelled Glücksborg), known as the House of Glücksburg (or House of Glücksborg) for short, is a German ducal house, junior branches of which include the royal houses of Denmark and Norway, the deposed royal house of Greece, and the heir to the thrones of the Commonwealth realms[1][2] (although in the latter case, they are, by royal proclamation, declared to be members of the House of Windsor[3]). The family is named after Glücksburg in northernmost Germany, and is a cadet branch of the House of Oldenburg that is descended from King Christian III of Denmark. However, as the elder line of the House of Oldenburg became extinct in the 19th century, the House of Glücksburg is now the senior surviving branch of the House of Oldenburg.

This particular line comes from the Dukes of Schleswig-Holstein-Sonderburg-Beck. The last of them became Duke of Glücksburg and changed his title accordingly to Friedrich Wilhelm, Duke of Schleswig-Holstein-Sonderburg-Glücksburg. He was married to Princess Louise Caroline of Hesse-Kassel, a granddaughter of King Frederick V of Denmark.

Neither the Dukes of Beck nor of Glücksburg were sovereign rulers - they held their lands in fief to the sovereign dukes of Schleswig and Holstein (who were also the Kings of Denmark in personal union) and, before 1773, the Dukes of Holstein-Gottorp.

Christian IX of Denmark, the fourth son of Friedrich Wilhelm, was chosen by the childless King Frederick VII of Denmark to be his heir, as Christian was married to Frederick's first cousin, Luise of Hesse-Kassel. Wilhelm, the second son of Crown Prince Christian and Crown Princess Luise, was elected King of the Hellenes on March 30, 1863 to succeed the deposed Wittelsbach Otto of Greece and took the name George I of Greece. His father became King of Denmark as Christian IX on November 15, 1863. Prince Carl, the second son of Frederick VIII of Denmark, Christian IX's eldest son, became King of Norway on November 18, 1905 as Haakon VII of Norway. Christian IX's daughters, Alexandra of Denmark and Dagmar of Denmark (who became Maria Feodorovna), married Edward VII of the United Kingdom and Alexander III of Russia, respectively. As a result, by 1914, descendants of King Christian IX were nearly as prevalent on European thrones as those of Queen Victoria; Christian IX became known as the Father-in-law of Europe.


Male line ancestry of Duke Friedrich Wilhelm

  1. Elimar I, Count of Oldenburg
  2. Elimar II, Count of Oldenburg
  3. Christian I, Count of Oldenburg (Christian the Quarrelsome)
  4. Maurice, Count of Oldenburg
  5. Christian II, Count of Oldenburg
  6. John I, Count of Oldenburg
  7. Christian III, Count of Oldenburg
  8. John II, Count of Oldenburg
  9. Conrad I, Count of Oldenburg
  10. Christian V, Count of Oldenburg
  11. Dietrich, Count of Oldenburg
  12. Christian I of Denmark
  13. Frederick I of Denmark
  14. Christian III of Denmark
  15. John II, Duke of Schleswig-Holstein-Sonderburg
  16. Alexander, Duke of Schleswig-Holstein-Sonderburg
  17. August Philipp, Duke of Schleswig-Holstein-Sonderburg-Beck
  18. Frederick Louis, Duke of Schleswig-Holstein-Sonderburg-Beck
  19. Peter August, Duke of Schleswig-Holstein-Sonderburg-Beck
  20. Karl Anton August, Prince of Schleswig-Holstein-Sonderburg-Beck
  21. Friedrich Karl Ludwig, Duke of Schleswig-Holstein-Sonderburg-Beck
  22. Friedrich Wilhelm, Duke of Schleswig-Holstein-Sonderburg-Glücksburg

Senior line, Dukes of Schleswig-Holstein-Sonderburg-Glücksburg (1825–present)

Ducal Family of Schleswig-Holstein
Coat of arms of Schleswig-Holstein.svg

HH The Dowager Duchess

v · House of Oldenburg.

Junior branches

Junior branches of the House of Glücksburg are descended notably from Duke Friedrich Wilhelm's younger son, who became Christian IX of Denmark.

Monarchs of Denmark, 1863–present

The agnatic lineage is continued from Friedrich Wilhelm, Duke of Schleswig-Holstein-Sonderburg-Glücksburg.

Kings of the Hellenes (Greece), 1863–1973

The Greek line is descended from Prince Vilhelm, a son of Prince Christian of Schleswig-Holstein-Sonderburg-Glücksburg (the later Christian IX of Denmark), who became King of the Hellenes as George I. The agnatic lineage is continued from Christian IX of Denmark.

Thirty-drachma coin of 1963, commemorating the centennial of the reign of the House of Glücksburg in Greece. Clockwise from the top: Paul, George II, Alexander, Constantine I and George I.
Heirs to the Commonwealth realms and their ancestors

The heirs to the Commonwealth realms are descended from Prince Philip of Greece and Denmark, a paternal grandson of George I of Greece. However, by Letters Patent of 8 February 1960, Queen Elizabeth II declared that her children with Prince Philip would belong to the House of Windsor, as would any agnatic descendants who enjoy the style of Royal Highness, and the title of Prince or Princess. (Those who do not have that style and title would bear the surname Mountbatten-Windsor.)[3]

The agnatic lineage is continued from Friedrich Wilhelm, Duke of Schleswig-Holstein-Sonderburg-Glücksburg.

Kings of Norway, 1905–present

The Norwegian branch is descended from Prince Carl of Glücksburg, a younger son of Frederick VIII of Denmark. He took the name Haakon as king.

Other notable members

Coat of arms

The coat of arms of Norway is the coat of arms of Norway as a state, in use since the 11th century and used by all ruling houses since then, and not the family coat of arms of Schleswig-Holstein-Sonderburg-Glücksburg.


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