The Greek royal family (Greek: Ελληνική Βασιλική Οικογένεια) is a branch of the House of Glücksburg that reigned in Greece from 1863 to 1924 and again from 1935 to 1973. Its first monarch was George I, the second son of King Christian IX of Denmark. He and his successors styled themselves "Kings of the Hellenes".
After the overthrow in 1862 of the first king of the independent Greek state, Otto of Bavaria, a plebiscite in Greece was initiated on 19 November 1862[note 1], with the results announced in February the following year[note 2], in support of adopting Prince Alfred of the United Kingdom, later Duke of Edinburgh, to reign as king of the country. The candidacy of Prince Alfred was rejected by the Great Powers. The London Conference of 1832 had prohibited any of the Great Powers' ruling families from accepting the crown of Greece, while Queen Victoria was opposed to such a prospect.
A search for other candidates ensued, and eventually, Prince William of Denmark, of the Danish Glücksburg Dynasty, the second son of King Christian IX and younger brother of the new Princess of Wales, was appointed king. The Greek Parliament unanimously approved on 18 March 1863[note 3] the ascension to the Greek throne of the prince, then aged 17, as King of the Hellenes under the regnal name of George I. George arrived in Greece in October 1863.
George I married Grand Duchess Olga Constaninovna of Russia, and they had seven surviving children. After a reign of almost fifty years, George I was succeeded by his eldest son, Constantine I, who had married, in 1913, Princess Sophia of Prussia, a granddaughter of Queen Victoria and sister of Kaiser Wilhelm II. In turn, all three of Constantine's sons, George II, Alexander and Paul, would occupy the throne.
The dynasty reigned in Greece during the Balkan Wars, World War I, World War II (during which Greece experienced occupation by the Axis), the Greek Civil War, and the Greek military junta of 1967–1974.
Following the National Schism during World War I and the subsequent Asia Minor Disaster, the monarchy was deposed in March 1924 and replaced by the Second Hellenic Republic. Between 1924 and 1935 there were in Greece twenty-three changes of government, a dictatorship, and thirteen coups d'etat. In October 1935, General Georgios Kondylis, a former Venizelist, overthrew the government and arranged for a plebiscite to end the republic. On 3 November 1935, the official tally showed that 98% of the votes supported the restoration of the monarchy. The balloting was not secret, and participation was compulsory. As Time described it at the time, "As a voter, one could drop into the ballot box a blue vote for George II and please General George Kondylis, or one could cast a red ballot for the Republic and get roughed up."  George II returned to the Greek throne on 25 November 1935.
On 4 August 1936, the King endorsed the establishment of a dictatorship led by veteran army officer Ioannis Metaxas, signing decrees that dissolved the parliament, banned political parties, abolished the constitution, and purported to create the "Third Hellenic Civilization." An Index of banned books during that period included the works of Plato.
George II followed the Greek government in exile after the German invasion of Greece in 1941 and returned to the throne in 1946, after a referendum that resulted in the restoration of constitutional monarchy. He died in 1947 and was succeeded by his brother Paul. The new King reigned from the time of Greek civil war until his death in 1964, and was succeeded by his son, Constantine II.
On 21 April 1967, the elected government of Greece was overthrown by a group of middle-ranking army officers led by Colonel Georgios Papadopoulos, and a military dictatorship was established. The military junta formed a new government that was sworn in by Constantine II. On 13 December 1967, the King launched a counter-coup that failed and he, together with his family, fled to Rome and soon after to London.
The dictatorship nominally retained the monarchy but on 1 June 1973, Constantine II was declared "deposed" and Papadopoulos appointed himself "President of the Republic." Some two months later, on 29 July 1973, the military regime held a referendum whose official result confirmed, according to the junta, the abolition of the monarchy.
After the July 1974 Turkish invasion of Cyprus, the dictatorship fell. The military handed power over to Konstantinos Karamanlis, a conservative[note 4] politician who had been prime minister in the 1950s and early 60s. Karamanlis formed a "government of national unity" and held a constitutional referendum on 8 December 1974. The voters confirmed the abolition of the monarchy by a vote of 69% to 31% and the establishment of a parliamentary democracy in Greece.
In 2013, after being declared personae non gratae in the 1980s, having the palaces of the family and other estates expropriated in 1994, and then their passports annulled, Constantine and his wife Anne-Marie were once again living in Greece.
As male-line descendants of King Christian IX of Denmark, members of the dynasty bear the title of Prince or Princess of Denmark and thus are traditionally referred to as "Princes" or "Princesses of Greece and Denmark".
The extended members of the Greek royal family are:
|King George I||Queen Olga|
|King Constantine I||Queen Sophia||Prince Christopher||Princess Françoise|
|Queen Frederica||King Pavlos||Marina, consort of Prince Michael*||Prince Michael*|
|Queen Sofía of Spain*||The King||The Queen||Princess Irene*||Princess Alexandra, Mrs Mirzayantz*||The Duchess of Apulia*|
|Princess Alexia||The Crown Prince||The Crown Princess||Prince Nikolaos||Princess Tatiana||Princess Theodora||Prince Philippos|
|Princess Maria-Olympia||Prince Constantine-Alexios||Prince Achileas-Andreas||Prince Odysseas-Kimon||Prince Aristidis-Stavros|
* Member of the extended royal family
The Danish royal family is the dynastic family of the monarch. All members of the Danish royal family except Queen Margrethe II hold the title of Prince/Princess of Denmark. Dynastic children of the monarch and of the heir apparent are accorded the style of His/Her Royal Highness, while other members of the dynasty are addressed as His/Her Highness. The Queen is styled Her Majesty.
The Queen and her siblings belong to the House of Glücksburg, which is a branch of the Royal House of Oldenburg. The Queen's children and male-line descendants belong agnatically to the family de Laborde de Monpezat, and were given the concurrent title Count/Countess of Monpezat by royal decree on 30 April 2008.The Danish royal family enjoys remarkably high approval ratings in Denmark, ranging between 82% and 92%.Duke of Castel Duino
The Dukes of Castel Duino are a noble family in Italy descending from the Bohemian line of the Princely House of Thurn and Taxis. The title was created along with the additional title of Principe della Torre e Tasso in 1923 for Prince Alexander of Thurn and Taxis following his naturalisation in Kingdom of Italy. The second duke, Raimundo, married Princess Eugénie of Greece and Denmark a member of the Greek Royal Family.The seat of the family is Duino Castle in Duino in the Province of Trieste, Friuli-Venezia Giulia.Elisabeth of Romania
Elisabeth of Romania (full name Elisabeth Charlotte Josephine Alexandra Victoria: Romanian: Elisabeta a României, Greek: Ελισάβετ της Ρουμανίας; 12 October 1894 – 14 November 1956) was a princess of Romania and member of the House of Hohenzollern-Sigmaringen and by marriage Queen consort of Greece during 1922–1924.
Raised by her grand-uncle King Carol I of Romania and his wife Queen Elisabeth, she was an introvert and socially isolated. Married to Prince George, the heir to the Greek throne in 1921, she felt no passion for him and underwent the political turmoil in her adopted country after World War I. When her husband became King of Greece in 1922, Elisabeth was involved in assisting refugees who arrived to Athens after the disaster of the Greco-Turkish War. The rise of the revolutionary climate, however, affected her health and with great relief she left the Kingdom of Greece with her husband in December 1923. The royal couple then settled in Bucharest, and King George II was deposed on 25 March 1924.
In Romania, Elisabeth and George II's relationship deteriorated and the couple divorced in 1935. Very close to her brother, King Carol II of Romania, the princess amassed an important fortune, partly due to financial advice of her lover, the banker Alexandru Scanavi. After the death of her mother, Queen Marie, in 1938 and the dethronement of Carol II in 1940, Elisabeth took up the role of First Lady of Romania. At the end of World War II, she established close links with the Romanian Communist Party and openly conspired against her nephew, the young King Michael I, earning the nickname of "Red Aunt" of the sovereign. However, her communist links did not prevent her from being expelled from the country when the Socialist Republic of Romania was proclaimed in 1947. Exiled, the princess moved to Switzerland and then to Cannes, in southern France. She had a romantic relationship with Marc Favrat, a would-be artist almost thirty years younger, whom she finally adopted just before her death in 1956.List of Greek flags
This is a list of flags used in the modern state of Greece or historically used by Greeks.List of honours of the Greek royal family by country
This article serves as an index - as complete as possible - of all the honorific orders or similar decorations received by the Greek Royal Family, classified by continent, awarding country and recipient.List of royal palaces
This is a list of royal palaces, sorted by continent.Order of George I
The Royal Order of George I (Greek: Βασιλικόν Τάγμα Γεωργίου Α') is a Greek order instituted by King Constantine I in 1915. Since the monarchy's abolition in 1973, it has been considered a dynastic order of the former Greek royal family.Order of Saints George and Constantine
The Royal Family Order of Saints George and Constantine (Greek: Βασιλικόν Οἰκογενειακόν Τάγμα Ἁγίων Γεωργίου καὶ Κωνσταντίνου, romanized: Vasilikon Oikogeneiakon Tagma Agion Georgiou kai Konstantinou) is an order of the Greek royal family. For the duration of its existence, it has been the second highest decoration awarded by the modern Greek state and the Greek crown, after the Order of the Redeemer. It was instituted in January 1936 by King George II in the memory of his grandfather (King George I) and his father (King Constantine I). The order is awarded only to men, while the corresponding Order of Saints Olga and Sophia is reserved for women. The order's design was influenced by the royal family's Danish origin, evoking the appearance of the Order of the Dannebrog. The order is not awarded since 1975 by the Greek state after the abolition of monarchy and today is awarded only by the Greek Royal Family.Order of Saints Olga and Sophia
The Royal Family Order of Saints Olga and Sophia (Greek: Βασιλικόν Οἰκογενειακόν Τάγμα Ἁγίων Ὂλγας καὶ Σοφίας, romanized: Vasilikon Oikogeneiakon Tagma Agion Olgas kai Sofias) was an order of the Greek royal family. Reserved for women, it was the third highest honour of the modern Greek state and the Crown after the Order of the Redeemer and the male-only Order of Saints George and Constantine. It was instituted in January 1936 by King George II in the memory of his grandmother (Queen Olga) and his mother (Queen Sophia).
The order was abolished in 1973 by the Greek state and today is awarded only by the head of the former Greek royal family.Prince Achileas-Andreas of Greece and Denmark
Prince Achileas-Andreas of Greece and Denmark (Greek: Αχιλλέας Ανδρέας, born 12 August 2000) is a member of the Greek royal family. He is the second son and third child of Crown Prince Pavlos of Greece and Marie-Chantal Miller. His paternal grandparents are Constantine II of Greece and Anne-Marie of Denmark, who were the last King and Queen of the Hellenes. He is currently third in the line of succession to the former Greek throne.Prince Constantine Alexios of Greece and Denmark
Prince Constantine Alexios of Greece and Denmark (Greek: Κωνσταντίνος Αλέξιος; born 29 October 1998) is a member of the Greek royal family, the eldest son and second child of Crown Prince Pavlos and Crown Princess Marie-Chantal of Greece. He is second in line of succession, after his father, to the former throne of Greece. His paternal grandparents are Constantine II and Anne-Marie of Denmark, who were the last King and Queen of the Hellenes.Princess Alexia of Greece and Denmark
Princess Alexia of Greece and Denmark (Greek: Αλεξία; born 10 July 1965) is the eldest child of Constantine II and Anne-Marie of Denmark, who were king and queen of Greece from 1964 until the abolition of the monarchy in 1973.Princess Alice of Battenberg
Princess Alice of Battenberg (Victoria Alice Elizabeth Julia Marie; 25 February 1885 – 5 December 1969) was the mother of Prince Philip, Duke of Edinburgh, and mother-in-law of Queen Elizabeth II.
A great-granddaughter of Queen Victoria, she was born in Windsor Castle and grew up in the United Kingdom, the German Empire, and the Mediterranean. A Hessian princess by birth, she was a member of the Battenberg family, a morganatic branch of the House of Hesse-Darmstadt. She was congenitally deaf. After marrying Prince Andrew of Greece and Denmark in 1903, she adopted the style of her husband, becoming Princess Andrew of Greece and Denmark. She lived in Greece until the exile of most of the Greek royal family in 1917. On returning to Greece a few years later, her husband was blamed in part for the country's defeat in the Greco-Turkish War (1919–1922), and the family was once again forced into exile until the restoration of the Greek monarchy in 1935.
In 1930, she was diagnosed with schizophrenia and was committed to a sanatorium in Switzerland; thereafter, she lived separately from her husband. After her recovery, she devoted most of her remaining years to charity work in Greece. She stayed in Athens during the Second World War, sheltering Jewish refugees, for which she is recognised as "Righteous Among the Nations" by Israel's Holocaust memorial institution, Yad Vashem. After the war, she stayed in Greece and founded an Orthodox nursing order of nuns known as the Christian Sisterhood of Martha and Mary.
After the fall of King Constantine II of Greece and the imposition of military rule in Greece in 1967, she was invited by her son and daughter-in-law to live at Buckingham Palace in London, where she died two years later. Her remains were transferred from a vault in her birthplace, Windsor Castle, to a Russian Orthodox convent on the Mount of Olives in Jerusalem in 1988.Princess Maria-Olympia of Greece and Denmark
Princess Maria-Olympia of Greece and Denmark (born 25 July 1996) is an American-born fashion model, socialite and member of the Greek royal family. She is the oldest child and only daughter of Pavlos, Crown Prince of Greece and his wife, Marie-Chantal Miller. Her paternal grandparents are Constantine II of Greece and Anne-Marie of Denmark, who were the last King and Queen of the Hellenes, while her maternal grandfather is duty free entrepreneur Robert Warren Miller. She is currently sixth in the line of succession to the former throne of Greece, after her father and brothers.Princess Tatiana of Greece and Denmark
Princess Tatiana of Greece and Denmark (born Tatiana Ellinka Blatnik, 28 August 1980) is the wife of Prince Nikolaos, son of Constantine II, who reigned as King of Greece until the monarchy was abolished in 1973.Princess Theodora of Greece and Denmark
Princess Theodora of Greece and Denmark (Greek: Θεοδώρα, born 9 June 1983 in St Mary's Hospital, London), also known under her stage name Theodora Greece, is a British actress and member of the Greek royal family and Danish Royal Family. She is currently ninth in the line of succession to the defunct Greek throne.Queen Anne-Marie of Greece
Queen Anne-Marie of Greece, RE (Greek: Άννα-Μαρία pronounced [ana marˈia], born Princess Anne-Marie of Denmark on 30 August 1946) is the wife of King Constantine II, who reigned from 1964 until 1973.
Anne-Marie is the youngest daughter of King Frederick IX of Denmark and his wife Ingrid of Sweden. She is the youngest sister of the reigning Queen Margrethe II of Denmark and cousin of the reigning King Carl XVI Gustaf of Sweden.Tatoi Palace
Tatoi (Greek: Τατόι, pronounced [ta.ˈto.i]) was the summer palace and 10,000 acre estate of the former Greek Royal Family, and the birthplace of George II of the Hellenes. The area is a densely wooded southeast-facing slope of Mount Parnitha, and its ancient and current official name is Dekeleia. It is located 27 km from the city centre of Athens.Wedding of Princess Elizabeth and Philip Mountbatten
The wedding of Princess Elizabeth and Philip Mountbatten took place on 20 November 1947 at Westminster Abbey in London. Philip had been made Duke of Edinburgh on the morning of the wedding.
|Greek royal family|
|House of Glücksburg|