Luxembourg mourns Grand Duke Jean

Grand Duke Jean has passed away at the age of 98 following a week in hospital. Collections photographiques de la Maison grand-ducale de Luxembourg

Grand Duke Jean has passed away at the age of 98 following a week in hospital. Collections photographiques de la Maison grand-ducale de Luxembourg

The royal court issued a brief statement at 6 am on Tuesday to announce the death of Grand Duke Jean. The 98-year old was admitted to hospital a week ago with a lung infection, but as Delano reported by Wednesday his health outlook had been deemed “favourable” again.

However, his health deteriorated at the weekend and on Sunday evening the royal family gathered around his bed for his final hours.

Prime minister Xavier Bettel announced on Tuesday that the funeral had been scheduled for 4 May, at 11am, at the Notre Dame Cathedral.

Bettel will hold a cabinet meeting at 10am on Tuesday which will be followed by a meeting with Grand Duke Henri at Colmar-Berg, at 12 noon.


Message of condolences were shared on Tuesday.

European Commission president and former Luxembourg prime minister Jean-Claude Juncker paid tribute to the “commitment, kindness and courage” of a former head of state “who, throughout his reign, and in all circumstances, gave the best of himself to his country, which owes him so much. His death is a great loss for the Grand Duchy and for Europe.”

On behalf of the people of the US, the government and the embassy community, US ambassador in Luxembourg Randy Evans wrote of Grand Duke Jean:

“His role was indispensable in transitioning a people from the throes of identity annihilation, to the Grand Duchy his mother Grand Duchess Charlotte valiantly fought to preserve. His was no easy task following in the footsteps of such a larger than life historical leader in a place so decimated by war and challenged by bigger powers all around. But, he did it. Without him, the Grand Duchy of Luxembourg would not exist as it does today - thriving, expanding, and standing on its own as one of the most influential nations in the world.”

Patrons and Council of the British Luxembourg Society wrote:

“Grand Duke Jean was for many years the Patron of the Sir Winston Churchill Memorial Lectures and we were recently advised by his Chamberlain that the Grand Duke was pleased to hear that we are reviving the Lectures.
Grand Duke Jean was a great friend of the United Kingdom having served in the British Army as an officer in the Irish Guards during the second world war. He was subsequently Colonel of the regiment and an Honorary General in the British Army. He was frequently to be seen at the annual Trooping of the Colour riding behind Her Majesty the Queen.

The British ambassador to Luxembourg wrote:

HRH Grand Duke Jean was much loved by all who came into contact with him. We send our condolences to the Grand-Ducal family and to the people of Luxembourg.”

The British ambassador to Luxembourg wrote:

Modern art museum the Mudam, which in 1989 was named after Grand Duke Jean (Musée d'Art Moderne Grand Duc Jean) to mark his 25th anniversary as head of state, wrote in a statement that it was proud to carry the Grand Duke's name. It added that its thoughts were with the Grand Ducal family.