Grand Duke's Official Birthday

Grand Duke's Official Birthday

The Grand Duke's Official Birthday (French: Célébration publique de l'anniversaire du souverain) is celebrated as the annual national holiday of Luxembourg. It is celebrated on 23 June, although this has never been the actual birthday of any ruler of Luxembourg. When the monarch of Luxembourg is female, it is known as the Grand Duchess's Official Birthday.


Development of the holiday

The monarch's birthday has not always been celebrated on 23 June. Under William I (1815–40), the date was 24 April (although his actual birthday was 25 August), and under William II (1840–1849), it was 6 December, his actual birthday. This change created the strange situation of celebrating two Grand Ducal birthdays in 1840.[1] Under William III (1849–90), the date was set at 17 June until 1859, after which, his birthday was celebrated on 19 February: two days after his actual birthday.[1]

With the separation of the orders of succession, the Dutch and Luxembourgois thrones split in 1890. The Nassau-Weilburg monarchs celebrated their Official Birthdays on their actual birthdays. In 1947, the day was declared the 'national holiday'.[1] As both the reigning Charlotte and the Heir Apparent (and regent) Jean were born in January, it was feared that their actual birthdays, therefore the nation's holiday, would be marred by poor weather.[2] Thus, on 23 December 1961, the date was fixed on 23 June by Grand Ducal decree.[3]

See also


  1. ^ a b c Dostert et al. (2002), p. 103
  2. ^ "Everything you need to know about Luxembourg" (PDF). Service Information et Presse. p. 13. Retrieved 2006-08-02. 
  3. ^ (French) "Mémorial A, 1961, No. 59" (PDF). Service central de législation. Retrieved 2006-08-02. 


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