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Looking Back On The 73-Year Marriage Of Royals Queen Elizabeth II And Prince Philip

Queen Elizabeth II lesser known facts, queen elizabeth and prince philip, Prince Philip

Queen Elizabeth and Prince Philip, top senior royals of the British monarchy, shared a long union of 73 years. One half of the pair remains now. On Friday, Buckingham Palace confirmed the death of Philip, Duke of Edinburgh, at age 99 owing to health issues. “It is with deep sorrow that Her Majesty The Queen has announced the death of her beloved husband,” the royal statement read.

Prince Philip, markedly the longest-serving male member of the British royal family, was a companion and partner to the Queen through her reign. From partaking in royal duties to accompanying her on hers and playing a key role in the upbringing of all the couple’s four children, Prince Philip was notably recognised by many palace insiders and royal watchers as one of the most committed associates of the monarchy.

His meeting in the 1930s to newly-turned teen Elizabeth (who hadn’t then ascended to the throne) prompted letter exchanges and a blossoming romance that developed into a long courtship until their marriage in 1947. They completed 73 years of married life last year in November.

queen elizabeth and prince philip

Source: The Royal Family / Instagram

Queen Elizabeth And Prince Philip: Timeline Of A Decades-Old Love


Prince Philip and Princess Elizabeth meet for the first time at the marriage of the latter’s paternal uncle Prince George. Philip and Elizabeth were second cousins, sharing a direct ancestor in Queen Victoria, their great-great-grandmother.

A descendant of the Greek and Danish royal families, Prince Philip then served in the Navy, while Princess Elizabeth was next in line to the British throne after her father King George VI.


Love was realised between them a couple meetings later, when the princess was only 13 and he, 18. Letters were exchanged and romance eyeing a longer future stirred.


After an engagement the year previously, Princess Elizabeth and Prince Philip tied the knot at Westminster Abbey on 20 November. It was reported there were some concerns about the princess’ young age (21 years) and the prince’s own royal roots. But the couple overcame.

Philip gave up his former titles for Lieutenant Philip Mountbatten, and the King bestowed the titles of Duchess and Duke of Edinburgh for his daughter and son-in-law respectively.


The couple welcomed their first child Prince Charles that November. Three more children followed – Princess Anne in 1950, Prince Andrew in 1960 and Prince Edward in 1964.

1952 and onwards

Princess Elizabeth ascended to the British throne upon her father’s demise and was crowned Queen. Prince Philip, she maintained, was to have a “place, pre-eminence and precedence… on all occasions and in all meetings” beside her, as he took on the role of the Queen’s consort.

He accompanied Queen Elizabeth on all 251 trips she undertook as the sovereign, as per official records, aside from his other engagements in the life of public service. Prince Philip was the patron of reportedly 785 organisations, focused on wildlife to sports and everything in between, and through his time as a public figure, gave many speeches and took on solo ventures of development.


Marking their golden jubilee anniversary in 1997, Queen Elizabeth made a profound recognition of her husband’s support through a speech. “He is someone who doesn’t take easily to compliments but he has, quite simply, been my strength and stay all these years, and I, and his whole family, and this and many other countries, owe him a debt greater than he would ever claim, or we shall ever know.”

Prince Philip was known as a quiet, grounded royal family member, as insiders testify. Operation Forth Bridge, a pre-determined plan for his death and funeral, reflected his personality, in keeping with his wish for minimum “fuss” when the state funeral would be carried out.


Prince Philip retired from his life of public duties at the age of 97. He was, prominently, the longest-serving consort to the Queen in British royal history.

Even following his retirement, Prince Philip was spotted beside Queen Elizabeth in public appearances and on significant occasions.

In recent times 

The British royals have been excessively mired in controversy and complications of late, including concerns surrounding racism at Buckingham and the late Prince Philip’s then-increasing health concerns.

Meghan Markle and Prince Harry, who in March 2021 made headlines for allegations of racism against the royal family in an interview with Oprah Winfrey, later relayed that the racist remarks did not come from Queen Elizabeth and Prince Philip. Full story here.

Meanwhile, the pressure of mounting health conditions prompted Prince Philip to move in and out of hospitals during the final months of his life. He was to complete a century on June 10.

As Queen Elizabeth mourns the “death of her beloved husband,” the royal family website has gone dark in memoriam.