Hans Christian Andersen is Denmark’s most famous writer, responsible for stories that have been shared around the world like The Ugly Duckling and The Little Mermaid. The author was born in Odense, the son of a shoemaker and a washerwoman. At the age of 14, he moved to Copenhagen, where he would call home for most of his life. Though Andersen loved to travel (the large leather trunk he carried on those journeys is on display at the Copenhagen airport) he never settled anywhere else.
Andersen died in 1875, at the age of 70. The composer J.P.E. Hartmann was a close friend, and one of the last people to visit the author before his death. Andersen’s health had been growing worse for several years, and the two reportedly discussed what music would be played at his funeral.
On August 11, 1875, Andersen’s funeral was held at the Cathedral of Our Lady in Copenhagen. He was buried in Assistens Cemetery, where he originally shared a burial plot with his friend Edvard Collin, and Collin’s wife Henriette. In 1914, the Collins’ tombstone was moved to another cemetery. A new gravestone was put in place, but only included Andersen’s name and the dates of his birth and death.
His gravestone and the location are much more modest than one might expect, but nevertheless get regular visits from fans.
Know Before You Go
The grave is freely accessible, but do check the website for opening hours of the cemetery.