Fascinating Facts You Need To Know About Prince Philip


The Queens funny nickname


Prince Philip and Queen Elizabeth II have been married for seven long and fruitful decades. Dame Helen Mirren iconically played Queen Elizabeth II in the movie The Queen. In the acclaimed film, audiences discovered the unlikely nickname the Prince had for his beloved wife. Filmmaker Peter Morgan said, “I inquired in royal circles and was told on very good authority that that is what the Duke sometimes calls the Queen.” In the movie, Prince Philip can be heard calling his wife ‘Cabbage!’

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Family Feud


Prince Philip served in the Royal Navy from 1939 until 1952. He graduated from the Royal Navy College in Dartmouth where at just 21 years old he became the first lieutenant of HMS Wallace. During the invasion of Sicily in 1943 Prince Philip saved a British naval vessel from enemy attack. Not long after he began his service, while on a tour in 1939, he met and fell in love with the young and lovely, Elizabeth. Shockingly, when serving in World War II with the British forces, his two brother-in-laws (who were married to his older sisters) were on the opposing German side!

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Aristocrat in the Air


Philip is a man of many passions and many talents. He is actually the very first member of the British royal family to fly a helicopter. But we’ll learn more about this royal’s unlikely skills later…

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Canada vs. Calories


Philip has always been known to be an outspoken man. The Prince actually caused a minor scandal in 1959 while on tour alongside Elizabeth to Canada. Apparently, he made remarks that inferred Canadian kids were too ‘out of shape.’ He later revised his comments to clarify he was simply encouraging a culture of fitness and health amongst the nation’s youth.

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The Church of Phil


Astonishingly, Prince Philip is actually worshipped as a god by a sect of people on the remote island of Tana, Vanuatu. When knowledge of the “Prince Philip Movement” was brought to the royal himself, it was suggested he send the villagers a signed portrait. Philip agreed, and the grateful tribe sent him a pig-killing club in return. He sent them another portrait back, featuring the consort himself posing with the gifted club.

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A Princely Penny


It might be difficult to believe, but apparently being royal by blood doesn’t always pay. At the time of his marriage to the Queen, Philip reportedly only had only 12 pence in his bank account. His current net worth is reportedly $30 million. Oh, how times have changed!

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Philip and Elizabeth Are Cousins


Perhaps shocking to some, Prince Philip and Queen Elizabeth II are actually related. Though this practice amongst royals is not uncommon. The previous Queen Victoria married her cousin, known to us as Prince Albert. Elizabeth and Philip are related as third cousins through Queen Victoria of Great Britain. Through another royal connection, they are also second cousins, once removed.

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The longest-lasting couple


Prince Philip and Queen Elizabeth II are in fact the longest-lasting married couple of any British ruler and their consort. The married couple have actually been together and in love for close to eighty years. It looks as though the relationship between Prince William and Kate Middleton could outlast the Queen’s but in order to do so, both Kate and William would both need to live to be over 100 years old!

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Fleeing to Florence


During 1919, when the Turkish war with Greece broke out, Prince Philip’s family found themselves in grave danger. Philip was born into Greek and Danish Royal families. During the war his uncle, King Constantine I, was violently forced to abdicate the throne. Prince Andrew, Philip’s father, was subsequently arrested and the royal family knew that in order to survive they would have to flee. Their decision to escape to France meant that their family then became royal exiles. Just a baby at the time of the harrowing ongoings, Philip was smuggled into the country by hiding in a wooden fruit box.

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Official retirement


On 2nd August 2017 Prince Philip retired from his duties after almost 70 years of public service. He had a staggering amount of solo engagements under his belt with a total of 22,219 completed. His last royal appearance was at the Captain General’s Parade. Prince Philip’s retirement came soon after his 96th birthday. It seems the Queen  is also taking a step back from the public eye and leaving more and more appearances to her son and grandsons.

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He identifies as Danish


Prince Philip speaks fluent English, French and German. After his family had to flee from Greece, they moved in with Philip’s aunt, Princess George of Greece and Denmark, who lived in Paris, It was there that Philip had a predominantly Danish upbringing. Following his retirement, a spectacular portrait of the royal was painted and put on display in Denmark at Frederiksborg castle.

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Thousands of speeches


Prince Philip is the longest-serving royal consort in British history. Even though he is not king himself, and is officially classed as a ‘Consort,’ this does not alter the many demands placed upon him as the Queen’s partner. Prince Philip has given around 5,496 speeches throughout his time of public service. Conservation and environmentalism is one of his greatest passions and he is actively involved in 800 organizations committed to protecting the environment.

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But why isn’t he king?


We know that Prince Philip was born into a royal family and officially wed then-Princess Elizabeth in 1947. Upon walking down the aisle, the Prince gave up both of his titles. It wasn’t possible for him to receive the title of King or even simply Prince and he was instead named Prince Philip, Duke of Edinburgh. In the UK, a reigning Queen’s husband is known as a prince consort, regardless of any titles he may hold. As he was a foreigner, he wasn’t able to become a king consort.

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Did We Put Power Moves on the Wedding Registry?


On the occasion of their wedding, Mahatma Gandhi sent the royal couple a wedding gift of cotton lace with the embroidered words “Jai Hind” which means “Victory for India.” He had spun the piece of cloth himself. Philip’s mother-in-law thought it was a loincloth and believed it was an “indelicate” gesture.

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Born Photographers


The Queen and Philip have always been icons of great British style. This beautiful and rare image from Vanity Fair magazine, shows the young couple out for the day, while the young Queen makes use of her new camera.

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He’s also an author


With his unrivalled love for the environment, Prince Philip has actually penned many books on the subject. While fulfilling all of his royal duties, he has also written several works including Survival or Extinction: A Christian Attitude to the Environment and Birds from Britannia. In total, he has published 14 books.

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His love for being at sea


Queen Elizabeth II has had many things built in her honor, one being the Royal Yacht Britannia which was built in 1952. Following his time in the navy, Prince Philip was the most excited about the new vessel and it wasn’t long until he took to the sees on a leisurely voyage.

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Well, One of Us Had to Do It


From 1956 to 1957, Philip made a worldwide trip on the HMY Britannia. Impressively, he became the first royal person on record to cross the Antarctic Circle.

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He thinks he’s a comedian


The royal family is expected to act with the utmost sensitivity and tact in all situations. Despite his years of service, the Prince has not always got it right. In 2002, while visiting Australia, he asked, “Do you still throw spears at each other?”  Most people put his offensive comments down to old age.

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The first royal to fly


Flying is yet another one of Prince Philip’s many passions. Besides spending time at sea, the royal adrenaline junkie also ensured he would be able to fly a plane. In 1953 he earned his pilots wings after successfully finishing three landings and solo circuits.

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Time with his children


After 30 grueling hours of labour, Queen Elizabeth II gave birth to Prince Charles in 1948. At this time, Prince Philip made little adjustments to his daily life in order to prepare for the birth of his first child. When a reporter speculated on the relationship between father and son, a friend of the family once said “When he needed a father, there just wasn’t anybody there.”

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The life as a consort


Unable to have the title of a King, Prince Philip has remained a consort throughout his time as a royal family member – even though he was born into 2 royal families. When a new King or Queen takes reign, the royal house must be given a name. Under usual circumstances a royal home would bear the husband’s name. However, British Prime Minister Winston Churchill and Queen Mary decided the house would take Elizabeth’s name and was called the House of Windsor.

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A strong relationship


After 70 years, the couple are still deeply committed to one another. Queen Elizabeth II and Prince Philip have had a long and unwavering marriage, as well as four children. In 2012, while giving a speech at her Diamond Jubilee, Queen Elizabeth II said Philip is her “constant strength and guide.” Through the highs and lows of her lengthy reign, the couple has remained resilient.

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Prince Philip Quit Smoking On Their Wedding Day


While she wasn’t yet Queen, the public were very fond of Elizabeth. Philip and Elizabeth’s wedding proved to be a nationally-celebrated occasion. Millions were invested in the future of the Queen-to-be’s relationship. As a kindhearted wedding gift, Prince Philip promised to stop smoking cigarettes.

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Philip’s Mother Was Diagnosed With Schizophrenia


Princess Alice of Battenberg was the mother of Prince Philip. To her young son’s devastation, she was diagnosed with schizophrenia. Princess Alice moved to Switzerland when she was committed to a mental health hospital when Philip was just nine years old. Following her admission, he had little contact with her. Bizarrely, his mother believed she was she receiving messages from a divine source.

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Philip is a great dresser


With all eyes on him and the Queen, Prince Philip always has to look prim and proper. He has amassed a vast wardrobe over his 70 years of service. Even one of the worlds top male fashion magazines, GQ, ranked him the 33rd best dressed man in the UK.

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A skilled carriage rider


Later in his life, Prince Philip took up another adrenaline-fuelled hobby. He told the Daily Mail, “I started driving because I’d been playing polo, and I decided I’d give up polo when I was 50. I was looking round to see what next, I didn’t know what there was available.’ And I suddenly thought, well, we’ve got horses and carriages so why don’t I have a go.”

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Love from a young age


In 1939, then Prince Philip of Greece and Princess Elizabeth were playing tennis in Devon, a seaside town in the United Kingdom. It was here that they first met each other on the tennis courts. Elizabeth was just 13 at the time yet her connection with the 18 year old royal was undeniable. The pair stayed in contact and Philip was subsequently invited to spend Christmas with the Royal Family at Windsor in 1943. Her father, King George VI, told the couple they had to wait until Elizabeth turned 21 years old to wed.

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German ties after the war


Despite the nation-wide excitement of Prince Philip and Princess Elizabeth’s impending wedding, there was some uncertainty surrounding Philip’s family. It wasn’t too long after the war that they were going to get married. Prince Philips sisters were married to two German princes and were in turn, German. With the effects of war still being felt in the UK, neither of his sisters were invited to the wedding. Little money was spent on the wedding as the country was still recovering from the devastating war.

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Royal Recycling


Philip used the diamonds from his mother’s tiara to make Elizabeth’s engagement ring. With the jewels left over, he also fashioned her a wedding bracelet.

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His love for traveling


Prince Philip always had a great love for travel and adventure. With the demanding duties of his royal engagements, Philip’s role matched perfectly with his lust for new experiences. Whether he was traveling on his own, or accompanying Queen Elizabeth on her many press tours, he visited many of the world’s most beautiful and exotic countries. For their honeymoon, the pair took a trip to Scotland staying at the Balmoral Estate in Aberdeenshire. During the 50’s, the pair traveled extensively, visiting Malta, Washington, Niagra and Kenya. As well as visiting Canada where they met with a group of Native American chiefs.

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Diana Causing A Rift


When it became clear that Princess Diana had given interviews for Andrew Morton’s infamous biography, which exposed the misery of her marriage in searing detail and frowned upon scrutiny, Philip was utterly incensed. As always, Philip articulated his views forcefully and accused the Queen of ‘procrastinating’ on the question of whether Charles and Diana should divorce.

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Marital Woes


Prince Philip, for his part, decided to get involved in the tumultuous situation. He initially tried to talk to Charles about his marital difficulties and the effect they were having on the royal institution and the UK at large. Philip then asked his wife to bring her considerable authority to bear on an increasingly senseless situation, but she refused to intervene. He also tried reaching out to his unhappy daughter-in-law by writing her dozens of heartfelt letters.

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Grandfatherly Advice


Amidst the royal family’s polarizing response to Diana’s tragic death in 1997, it was Philip who convinced her sons to walk behind her coffin at the public funeral. When Princes William and Harry were apprehensive, Philip reportedly told his eldest grandson, “If you don’t walk, I think you’ll regret it later. If I walk, will you walk with me?” At the funeral, in a now-iconic image, Philip, William, Harry, Charles, and Diana’s brother followed the bier.

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Prince Philip the artist


The Duke of Edinburgh has always had a love of fine art yet few people know, he is an artist himself. In 1965, he painted a picture of the Queen entitled ‘The Queen at Breakfast, Windsor Castle.’ The painting sits within his private collection. The pictures show’s us an intimate glimpse into the Queen’s and her loving husband’s personal life.