Published: 09th April 2021
Queen Elizabeth II's husband Prince Philip dies: 5 facts you probably didn't know about the Duke of Edinburgh
"Prince Philip is simply my rock. He is my foundation stone," Queen Elizabeth II had said at a lunch in 1997 honouring their 50th wedding anniversary
Queen Elizabeth II's husband, Prince Philip, Duke of Edinburgh breathed his last at the Windsor Castle in the English county of Berkshire on Friday. He would have been 100 years old on June 10 this year. With the Duke's death, this would be the end of the longest marriage of a reigning monarch in Britain's history. "It is with deep sorrow that Her Majesty The Queen has announced the death of her beloved husband, His Royal Highness The Prince Philip, Duke of Edinburgh," Buckingham Palace said in a statement. "His Royal Highness passed away peacefully this morning at Windsor Castle."
Prince Philip had been hospitalised for a month this year, from February 16 to March 16, during which he underwent a heart procedure. He was also treated for chest pains in 2011, was hospitalised for two days in 2017 and was hospitalised again for 10 days in 2018 for a hip replacement.
It is with deep sorrow that Her Majesty The Queen has announced the death of her beloved husband, His Royal Highness The Prince Philip, Duke of Edinburgh.— The Royal Family (@RoyalFamily) April 9, 2021
His Royal Highness passed away peacefully this morning at Windsor Castle. pic.twitter.com/XOIDQqlFPn
"Prince Philip is simply my rock. He is my foundation stone," Queen Elizabeth II had said at a lunch in 1997 honouring their 50th wedding anniversary. As the entire world mourns his demise, here's five facts about the Duke of Edinburgh you probably didn't know.
1. The Duke of Edinburgh wasn't actually born on his birthday
Prince Philip was born at the summer retreat of the Greek royal family, Mon Repos, on the island of Corfu off the west coast of Greece, in the year 1921. At the time, Greece was still following the Julian calendar and the country didn't adopt the Gregorian calendar until 1923. The difference between the two calendars means that in his home country he was actually born on May 28 instead of June 10, which is now officially celebrated as his birthday.
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2. His mother was a nun
If you have watched Netflix’s show on the British royal family The Crown, it might have come as a surprise to you in season three that Prince Philip’s mother became a nun. But it is the absolute truth. Otherwise known as Princess Alice of Battenberg, the Duke's mother was born in England but married a Greek prince. She lived in Greece until the family was forced into exile. She endured mental health issues, for which she consulted renowned psychologist Sigmund Freud.
3. The Duke of Edinburgh was a pilot
Like his grandsons Prince William and Prince Harry, Prince Philip too loves to fly and is a trained pilot. Named Marshal of the Royal Air Force (RAF) among his other service appointments, the Duke became an RAF pilot in 1953, as well as a helicopter pilot in 1956. He also earned his private pilot’s license in 1959.
4. Prince Philip was a war hero
The Duke of Edinburgh accomplished a lot in his youth as a member of the Royal Navy starting at age 18 years as a midshipman. During the Second World War, he was mentioned in dispatches — reports to high-ranking officers — for his searchlight control in the March 1941 Battle of Matapan off Greece. He had also been awarded the Greek War Cross of Valor.
5. Prince Philip had the last name Mountbatten, but not at birth
Prince Philip was originally born "Prince Philip of Greece and Denmark" but his family had been exiled from Greece when he was just a toddler. When he married Queen Elizabeth II in 1947, the Duke had to abandon his foreign titles, become a British citizen, and adopt a new surname all at once. He chose Mountbatten, the last name of his maternal grandparents. When the queen inherited the throne, she was advised not to take the Mountbatten title. Eight years after 1952, the Queen and Duke of Edinburgh declared together that they would like their kids to have the last name Mountbatten-Windsor.