Monarchy of Denmark
The Monarchy of Denmark, colloquially known as the Danish Monarchy, is a constitutional institution and a historic office of the Kingdom of Denmark. The Kingdom includes not only Denmark, but the autonomous regions of Greenland and the Faroe Islands. The monarchy is currently represented by Queen Margrethe II, who ascended the throne on the death of her father, King Frederik IX, on 14 January 1972. Danish regnal names have traditionally alternated between ""Frederick"" (Frederik) and ""Christian""; Margrethe has taken the place of a Christian, and accordingly her heir apparent is Crown Prince Frederik.The Danish Monarchy is constitutional and as such, the role of the monarch is defined and limited by the Constitution of Denmark, which refers to the position as the King (Konge). The monarch and his or her immediate family undertake various official, ceremonial, diplomatic and representational duties. The ultimate executive authority over the government of Denmark is still by and through the monarch's royal reserve powers; in practice these powers are only used according to laws enacted in Parliament or within the constraints of convention. The monarch is, in practice, limited to non-partisan functions such as bestowing honours and appointing the Prime Minister.The unified kingdom of Denmark was founded by the Viking kings Gorm the Old and Harald Bluetooth in the 10th century, making the monarchy of Denmark the oldest in Europe. Originally an elective monarchy, it became hereditary only in the 17th century during the reign of Frederick III. A decisive transition to a constitutional monarchy occurred in 1849 with the writing of the first Constitution. The current Royal House is a branch of the princely family of Glücksburg, originally from Schleswig-Holstein in Germany, the same royal house as the Norwegian and former Greek royal families. On her accession, Queen Margrethe II became the first female monarch of Denmark since Margrethe I, ruler of the Scandinavian countries in 1375‒1412, during the Kalmar Union.