Did you also wonder about Prince Joachim’s language on DR: ‘He speaks French-Danish’

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Prince Joachim has now lived in France for so long that it affects his Danish language skills.

Senior researcher at the Danish Language Council, Marianne Rathje, now confirms this after seeing an interview with the prince in The evening show on DR1.

On Thursday evening, Prince Joachim was in the studio to talk about the Copenhagen Historic Grand Prix, which he is participating in this weekend.

“It’s quite funny to hear that he suddenly sounds like his father, Prince Henrik, and sits and speaks that French-Danish thing,” says Marianne Rathje to BT

Senior researcher at the Danish Language Council, Marianne Rathje, says that Prince Joachim has started to speak ‘French-Danish’.
Photo: Niels Ahlmann Olesen

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Prince Henrik was notorious for his singing French accent when he spoke Danish.

In 2019, Prince Joachim moved permanently to France with his wife, Princess Marie and children Prince Henrik and Princess Athena. Prince Joachim first studied at the military academy Ecole Militaire, and later he was employed as a defense attaché at the Danish embassy in Paris.

And the years in France are now leaving their mark purely linguistically, Marianne Rathje believes.

“It’s on different linguistic levels. He says ‘pretty big’ at one point, using it without shock. There he says ‘big’. He searches for the words a lot. He says ‘a long run, ah’, as you say in French,’ she says.


Senior researcher at the Danish Language Council, Marianne Rathje, thinks that Prince Joachim has started to sound like Prince Henrik.

Senior researcher at the Danish Language Council, Marianne Rathje, thinks that Prince Joachim has started to sound like Prince Henrik.
Photo: Liselotte Sabroe

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There are also sounds that have become different:

“He has French t sounds. And then he says ‘ehm’ instead of ‘eh’ in Danish,’ explains Rathje

Also, idioms have become French-sounding:

“He says ‘we were on summer holiday in our heart of France’, and then he corrects it to ‘corner of France’,” she says and elaborates:

“He also uses the wrong words. After all, he himself says, ‘as the French say: All the planets were aligned.’ He uses an expression from French, which he then translates directly into Danish,’ she explains.

The Danish word order has also lost compared to the French.

“He uses reversed word order. He says: At that time ‘I was with the family then on summer holiday’ instead of ‘at that time I was then on summer holiday with the family.’ He puts the words in reverse order,’ she says.


Prince Joachim and Princess Marie moved to France in 2019. Here they are at the town hall in Paris.

Prince Joachim and Princess Marie moved to France in 2019. Here they are at the town hall in Paris.
Photo: Ida Marie Odgaard

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All in all, the prince’s Danish language has therefore been affected by the move to France.

“So there are really many signs that he is used to speaking French. There is no doubt about that,’ says Rathje.

The senior researcher reminds us that it is not at all unnatural when you move from Denmark to another country.

“There is nothing to say about that. You see that with many people who speak a foreign language every day and then have to speak Danish,’ she says and adds:

“I am reminded of Prince Henrik. Prince Joachim has got the French in his blood.’

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