He was the longest-serving consort to the longest-serving monarch in British history and when he died on 9th April 2021, he was only months away from his 100th birthday in June 2021.
Yes, I'm talking of Prince Philip who had returned to Windsor Castle on 16th March 2021 to be reunited with the Queen after spending a month in hospital – his longest stay. He initially received care for an infection but then underwent heart surgery for a pre-existing condition.
Prince Philip’s health had been slowly deteriorating over the past few years. He announced he was stepping down from royal engagements in May 2017, joking that he could no longer stand up.
After his death on 9th April 2021, I came to know so much about him from all the newspapers that paid tributes to him and wrote obituaries on him. Here is some of that information I gathered:
Prince Philip was born on 10th June 1921 on the Greek island of Corfu.
He was the youngest child and only son of Prince Andrew of Greece and Princess Alice of Battenberg.
That heritage made him a prince of Greece and Denmark, but the following year the family was banished from Greece after a coup.
Overcoming a lack of money, nationality and surname to marry Princess Elizabeth, the prince stayed by her side for 73 years.
Day in, day out, at thousands of engagements, Prince Philip also known as the Duke of Edinburgh could be found where protocol dictated and love determined: at the Queen’s side or a few paces behind.
The Duke never forgot his family's forced exodus from Greece, and believed monarchies must adapt to survive.
He set up informal lunches where the Queen could meet people from a broader range of backgrounds. The footmen - palace servants with a traditional uniform - stopped powdering their hair. And when he learned the palace was running a second kitchen exclusively to feed the royals, he had one shut down.
At Buckingham Palace, Prince Philip had intercoms put in so that servants no longer had to ferry written messages to his wife. He carried his own luggage, and cooked his own breakfast in his rooms with an electric frying pan - until the Queen objected to the smell.
As the longest-serving consort in British history, the prince took on some 22,191 solo engagements. When he retired from royal duties in 2017, he was said to be patron, president or a member of more than 780 organisations.
Accompanying the globetrotting Queen on Commonwealth tours and state visits, he visited 143 countries in an official capacity, making use of his fluent French and German.
But one of his most enduring legacies is the Duke of Edinburgh's Award, founded in 1956 at the urging of his former headmaster, Kurt Hahn.
He loved equine sports, including carriage driving, and was among the UK's top 4 polo players in the mid-1960s.
He was seen as the world's most famous husband. He and The Queen had four children:
Prince Charles, 72, Princess Anne, 70, Prince Andrew, 61, and 57-year-old Prince Edward.
Prince Philip lived long enough to see his 8 grandchildren grow up and to welcome 10 great-grandchildren.
Well, I've collated all the above information from the News Links below and so if you want to know more about him, you can click and read.
Prince Philip: the royal yang to the Queen’s yin
Prince Philip: 99 years, 143 countries and one very famous wife
Duke of Edinburgh’s job: first, second and last, never let the Queen down
My daughter has also benefitted from the Prince's legacy of DofE (Duke of Edinburgh's Award)
She participated in the activities and with her sheer hard work and determination, she won the Bronze and Silver awards, lovingly supported by her family, school and friends. Now she's busy with her A-levels and these are Covid times. I've informed her that if she wants to go for the Gold award, then she needs to achieve it by age 25 as in DofE all activities must be completed by the participant’s 25th birthday. Let's see when Covid recedes, if she proceeds....
That's all I had to share for now.
~ Aparna ~