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Happy New Year from the Queen Posted by on Dec 31, 2016 in Media, Traditions

Unlike julen (Christmas), the Danish nytårsfejring (New Year Celebration) hasn’t got a lot of traditioner. People get together, eat, drink (remember to say skååål!) and watch fyrværkeri. (Each year a small number of people get hurt by raketter – rockets.) One fixed tradition, however, is the televised nytårstale (New Year’s speech) by Queen Margrethe. Here are a few typical cuts from last year’s speech, to give you an idea… Godt nytår!

Public Domain, https://commons.wikimedia.org/w/index.php?curid=85545

Et år er ved at rinde ud; i morgen står et nyt for døren. (A year is about to end; tomorrow a new will be ”standing at the gate”…) Mange flygtninge har søgt beskyttelse i Danmark og det er vores ansvar at hjælpe. Det er en stor opgave, men også et vanskeligt dilemma, for hvor mange kan vi hjælpe og hvordan hjælper vi bedst? (Many refugees have searched protection in Denmark and it is our responsibility to help. It’s a huge task, but also a difficult dilemma, for how many can we help and how do we help in the best way possible? …)

De fleste mennesker havde en mere barsk hverdag for to-tre generationer siden. (Most people [in Denmark] led a harsher everyday life two-three generations ago…) Alligevel kan det se ud, som om flere bekymrer sig mere om mindre. Spiser vi for meget? Spiser vi sundt nok? (Still, it looks as if more people worry about less. Do we eat too much? Is our food healthy enough?…)

I år har Prinsgemalen og jeg igen besøgt Grønland. (This year the Prince Consort and I have been visiting Greenland again…) Vi siger begge: Tak for i sommer og ønsker hele det grønlandske samfund et godt nytår. (We both say: Thank you for this summer and we wish the entire Greenlandic society a happy New Year!…)

Vi sender vores varmeste hilsener og bedste nytårsønsker til alle på Færøerne (We send our warmest greetings and best New Year wishes to all people on the Faroes…)

I aften sender jeg også mine hilsener og tanker til alle danske, hvor i verden de end befinder sig. (This evening I also send my greeting and thoughts to all Danes, wherever in the world they may be…) Jeg sender også mine hilsener til de danske sydslesvigere. Ligesom det tyske mindretal nord for grænsen er de med til at gøre vort grænseland til et forbillede for andre grænselande. (I also send my greeting to the Danes of Schleswig in Germany. Just like the German minority north of the border they’re helping making our border region an example for other border regions…)

I nat vender vi endnu et blad: Hvad venter der os? Vi må se på fremtiden med håb, velvidende, at det nye år kan bringe os glæder såvel som sorger, udfordringer såvel som lykkelige stunder. Jeg ønsker for alle og for vort land, at de lykkelige stunder må blive de fleste og at vi kan møde udfordringerne med fortrøstning. Af hjertet: Godt nytår 2016! (Tonight we turn another page: What is awaiting us? We must look upon the future with hope, with the knowledge that the new year may bring us both joys and sorrows, challenges and happy moments. I wish for everybody and our country that the happy moments will be in the majority and that we’ll be able to meet the challenges with confidence. From the bottom of my heart: Happy New Year 2016!)

Gud bevare Danmark (God bless Denmark)

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About the Author:Bjørn A. Bojesen

I was born in Denmark, but spent large parts of my childhood and study years in Norway. I later returned to Denmark, where I finished my MA in Scandinavian Studies. Having relatives in Sweden as well, I feel very Scandinavian! I enjoy reading and travelling, and sharing stories with you! You’re always welcome to share your thoughts with me and the other readers.