Prince Philip. Why He was often Misunderstood by Outsiders As Arrogant

One of my favorite members of the European monarchy has died Friday morning, April 9. His Royal Highness Prince Philip, the Duke of Edinburgh died peacefully at Windsor Castle, according to the Royal Family's social media posts.

With it, ended the 19th century memory of European monarchy's glorious age of royalty where royal spouses really mean ROYAL.

Prince Philip was the last generation of that golden era of the monarchy's prestige. He was Europe's last prince consort who was born royal.

The last European prince to marry into the British royal family and the last link to the third generation of Europe's three prominent royal houses: Glucksburg, Windsor and Romanov of the Russian empire.

Prince Philip in 2011 (left) during the wedding of Prince William. And (right) as a young navy commander

Prince Philip was a third cousin to the seven out of 10 reigning Crown Heads of Europe including his wife, Queen Elizabeth II, from their two common ancestors, Queen Victoria and King Christian IX of Denmark.

King Felipe VI of Spain sent a deeply personal message of sympathy to his Aunt Lilibet (nickname of the Queen) for the passing of his dear Uncle Philip. King Felipe VI's father, King Juan Carlos, is a third cousin to the Queen and double third cousin of Prince Philip. Felipe's mother, Queen Sofia, is Prince Philip's niece.

The Queen and Prince Philip attending the private wedding of their granddaughter, Princess Beatrice of York. July 2020

The passing of Prince Philip came in a time when the world is convulsed in pain, grief and sorrow due to the pandemic, so it's more particularly searing to the Queen, more painful and more difficult. They had been married for 73 years.

Although it's quite inevitable due to his advance age (99) and in recent years, he had been ravaged by illnesses, the news still came as a shock. In part because, I had high hopes he would reach his centenary birthday celebration this June. 😔

A regular figure in my ROYAL BLOG

It's been a pleasure writing about Prince Philip down through all these years. He had been part of my royal ardor since college. And had written numerous articles about him and birthday tribute for the past 12 years.

Apart from Diana, he was a regular topic in my royal blog in the span of 12 years, fascinated with the fact that he descended from the most illustrious royal lineage in the European monarchy.

Why the Duke was often misunderstood?

More than his devotion to royal duty and his legacy on public service, people remembered him as a man with a dry humor who never held his tongue giving controversial statement.

People often have a one-sided view about Prince Philip but for royal observers who have followed the European monarchy for life, the Queen's husband was a relentless man who was fiercely protective of his wife's reign.

He was known for his gaffes, politically incorrect statement, and sometimes, offensive comment, which framed him on some people's mind as an arrogant man.

But to the people who really knew him, he was an exceptional prince consort in the anal of British history who assumed his role with life of dedication and loyalty.

He had been the British royal court's fierce defender, ensuring the prestige of the crown would not be tarnished by controversies.

In all the scandalous affairs his three children and in-laws got involved in 1990's, he was the monarchy's "watchdog", making sure none of it would threaten the survival of the monarchy.

However, he was largely misunderstood as a callous person.

Prince Philip believed part of his mission in life was to ensure the British throne would survive in the next centuries, firing bullet to those who may want to ruin the reputation of the crown.

Two of the "casualty" of his fiercely protective nature towards the monarchy were his daughters-in-law, Diana, Princess of Wales and Sarah, Duchess of York, whose messy marriages to two of his sons created serious crisis to the monarchy.

But Diana and Sarah were not the only people who triggered Philip's resentment, Prince Charles and Prince Andrew received his lashing.

He was often heard criticizing his eldest son, Prince Charles, for his unconventional behavior carrying an affair with a married woman (Camilla Parker Bowles) while still married with Diana.

Although public speculation on how he handled the crisis of his son's controversial marital and extra-marital affairs varies, the Duke's sympathy had always been on Her Majesty's reign.

Initially, Prince Philip and the Queen tried to save the marriage of Charles and Diana but it was the Prince of Wales who stomped hard his feet on the ground to get out of his marriage he thought was already irretrievable.

In the public view, Prince Philip was a callous parent who terrorized his daughters-in-law and tolerated his sons, but in reality, he was assuming both the role of a father and a prince consort.

He was known to have offered his sheer of sympathy, but his loyalty had always been on his role as a consort of the sovereign who meant business.

No matter how the public wrongly perceived the Duke of Edinburgh, he was a devoted consort to Her Majesty and the House of Windsor's custodian of royal decorum.

The Queen herself acknowledged the loyalty, dedication and sacrifices he did for the monarchy, calling him "my strength and my stay all these years".

Apart from her, no other member of the House of Windsor ever understood royal duty in the real sense of the world better than Prince Philip.

Prince Philip's turbulent childhood

Despite born royal, and descended from Europe's most illustrious royal families, Prince Philip did not live a life of privilege and wealth.

In 1923, his family fled Greece and lived in exile for the rest of their lives. His father, Prince Andrew of Greece and Denmark, was accused of High Treason for breaking the rules of engagement of his military commanders during the Greek-Turkish war.

He was rescued by his cousin, King George V of Britain, by dispatching a British warship to get him and his family out of Greece.

In 1931, when Prince Philip was 10 years old, his parents separated. His mother was sent to a mental facility in Switzerland while his father went to live in Southern France with a mistress.

All of his four sisters already married princes in Germany so the young Prince Philip was sent to England to live with his grandmother, Princess Victoria of Hesse and by Rhine, at Kensington Palace.

Since then, Philip had no permanent home and was constantly shuffling locations with various royal relatives around Europe. His education was financed by his sisters in Germany, maternal uncle, Lord Mountbatten, and maternal aunt, Crown Princess Louise of Sweden, wife of the future King Adolf VI Gustaf of Sweden.

His deeply troubled childhood had shaped Prince Philip's views in later life and taught him to be resilient, independent and patriarchal. The fall of the Greek monarchy also marked a searing memory in his mind. Greece was engulfed with political unrest and instability, constantly switching from monarchy to republic to monarchy and finally declared republic in 1947.

Philip was in line in the Greek throne succession until 1947 when he renounced his Greek royal title to become a British subject for his marriage to then Princess Elizabeth.

In November 1947, he finally found a permanent abode when he married the future Queen and found his true mission in life when he became a prince consort in 1952.

The experiences he undergone in his young life further honed his personality to be robust, protective and defensive against any threats of the throne's survival.

As a result, he was viewed as an arrogant man.

How I've come to know Prince Philip
In my college years, I became fascinated with the European monarchy after reading the story of Queen Victoria's glamorous era. From then on, I began digging stories about the European royals and started collecting royal books.

Prince Philip and his eldest son, Prince Charles

As the Queen's husband, he was a regular fixture of all things royals for 69 years and by the time I started writing about the monarchy, he had reached a peak of his role as the sovereign's consort.

However, I was surprised why he was not titled King.

It began my extensive research about royals of Europe, reading about royal titles, royal history, royal lifestyle and their function in the current society.

I started writing few articles about the Duke of Edinburgh and submitted it on pay-per-post websites. The hobby developed into a passion until it turned into a blogging endeavor about the royal world.

For 12 years, he was a regular topic in my blog, deeply impressed with his illustrious royal pedigree but felt sad about the circumstances of his childhood.

It inspired me to write his family tree to trace the roots of his royal ancestry and his blood connections to the current European royals. It was a strenuous task but very fulfilling, satisfied with the fact that I could trace the family roots of every royal in Europe.

Thus, Prince Philip's death left a huge void in my royal musing. It would take sometime before things get settled that he's now gone forever.

His presence would surely be missed by his family and by the members of the public he had touched in so many aspects, and the organizations and patronages he had devotedly supported. And most especially in my royal blogging life.

I have few book collections about his life and had read almost every article written about him since my college days.

The Duke of Edinburgh, who directly descended from Queen Victoria of the United Kingdom, King Christian IX of Denmark and Emperor Nicholas I of Russia, was a cousin and uncle to most European royals. Seven out of 10 Crown Heads in the continent are his third cousins and nephew. Thus, his death felt like a personal loss to them. He will forever be missed but will never be forgotten.

"Eternal rest grant unto him O Lord and let your perpetual light shine upon him. May His Royal Highness's soul, through the mercy of God, rest in peace".


Post a Comment