Life Story Of The Queens’ Husband: Hardships That Forged Prince Philip’s Character

Date June 29, 2018

After almost 70 years in the public eye, it seems that this tall and noble gentleman has always enjoyed luxury and royal privileges. However, his childhood story is one of exile, moving, loneliness, and hardships of military service.


A prince by birth

The longest living royal of the world was born in 1921 on the Greek island of Corfu to Prince Andrew of Greece and Denmark and Princess Alice of Battenberg. He was the only son among their 5 children and the sixth in line to the Greek throne. His bloodline is linked with Nicholas I of Russia, Christian IX of Denmark, and Victoria, Former Queen of the United Kingdom.

However, his noble birth didn’t save Prince Philip from a turbulent childhood.

Forced emigration

After the fiasco of Greco-Turkish War Philip's, uncle had to abdicate the Greek throne. Philip’s father, who was commanding a division, soon fell out of favor and was exiled in 1922. They moved to France, spending next decade in the suburbs of Paris.

It was a very hard time for the family. Although Alice and Andrew were loving parents, the children didn’t see much of them. His mother felt very bitter about the exile, and following a nervous breakdown she was confined to a sanatorium. Little Philip barely saw his mother for almost 5 years.

In the first decade of his life, Philip was mostly alone, communicating only with friends and distant relatives. The family was broken apart: The father left for South of France and elder sisters got married to German aristocrats. The little heir of the Greek throne was looked after by relatives on his mother’s side with ties to the British royal family.

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He was educated in a school in Britain, with a little time spent in Germany at school owned by one of his sisters’ husband. After Nazis took over, little Philip left Germany and continued to study in Gordonstoun (Scotland).

Upon reaching 18, the young man had endured more than his fair share of grief: The eldest sister was killed in a plane crash along with her husband and two children, and within month of this tragedy his uncle and guardian, George Mountbatten, died of cancer .

Philip enrolled at the Royal Naval College, and in 1940 served as a midshipman on the battleship in the Indian Ocean. He also served in the Mediterranean Sea and the Pacific Ocean, returning to civil life in 1946.

Meeting the love of his life


During his college years, Philip met his third cousin Princess Elizabeth. Yes, they are related through their great-great grandmother. He was asked to take the royal daughters on a tour. Although Elizabeth was only 13, the young people became friends and started corresponding.


In 1947, they announced their engagement.

The royal relatives on the bride’s side perhaps weren’t too pleased with Elizabeth’s choice, but nothing could change her mind.

READ ALSO: Royal Marriage: Queen Elizabeth Had To Fight For Prince Philip

The wedding took place on the 20th of November, 1947. Nobody of the groom’s relatives was present at the wedding.


Consort of the Queen

In 1952, after King George VI’s departure, Elizabeth was announced the Queen and Philip became Duke of Edinburgh. He had to leave the idea of pursuing the military path. In 1947, he abandoned his Greek and Danish royal titles and became a naturalized British subject.


Can you imagine what it must have been for an independent and tough first lieutenant of the Royal Navy to accept it? Anyway, he has been doing an excellent job for the last 70 years!


Tough childhood and early adulthood, the lack of parents’ care and misfortunes have forged Prince Philip into a tower of strength for his beloved woman – the Queen of the United Kingdom and the other Commonwealth realms.


Has this story changed your perception of the Duke of Edinburgh? Tell us what you felt reading his life story.

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Prince Philip