At 5 p.m. today the daughter of Prince Joachim and Princess Marie of Denmark, who was born on 24 January, was christened in Møgeltønder Church in the small town of the same name in the south of Denmark. In accordance with Danish royal traditions it was only at the christening that it was revealed that her name is Athena Marguerite Françoise Marie.
While the Danes are very traditional when it comes to the name of the heir to the throne (the kings are always named either Christian or Frederik) they tend to be quite creative concerning names for junior princes and princesses. Marguerite seems to be in honour of the Princess’s paternal grandmother, Queen Margrethe II of Denmark, while Françoise is for her maternal grandmother Françoise Grassiot and Marie for her mother.
The christening was performed by Royal Chaplain Erik Norman Svendsen, former Bishop of Copenhagen. The sponsors were two of Princess Marie’s half-brothers, Gregory Grandet (son of her mother) and Edouard Cavallier (son of her father), Carina Axelsson (who is the partner of Prince Joachim’s cousin, Prince Gustav of Sayn-Wittgenstein-Berleburg), Julie Mirabaud, Diego de Lavandeyra and Henriette Steenstrup.
Apart from Princess Athena and her parents, the royals and relatives of the royal family present were the Queen and Prince Consort of Denmark, Crown Prince Frederik and Crown Princess Mary with their two eldest children Christian and Isabella, Princess Athena’s half-brothers Prince Nikolai and Prince Felix, her brother Prince Henrik, Count Ingolf and Countess Sussie of Rosenborg, Prince Gustav of Sayn-Wittgenstein-Berleburg and Carina Axelsson, Prince Christian and Princess Lena of Schaumburg-Lippe, Michael and Désirée Iuel (née Princess of Schaumburg-Lippe), Count Valdemar of Rosenborg (grandson of Prince Erik), Countess Marina of Rosenborg (granddaughter of Prince Erik) and Portus Ekman, and Erik Vind (grandson of Prince Erik) and his wife Susanne.
From Princess Marie’s family came her father Alain Cavallier and his partner Marielle Dubern, her mother Françoise Grassiot with her husband Christian Grassiot, Charles Cavallier, Edouard Cavallier, Gregory Grandet, Jerome Grassiot and his wife, Jennifer Shorto, Benjamin Grandet and Nina Arichi.