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Prince Philip celebrates 99th birthday with the Queen

PUBLISHED: 10:09 10 June 2020 | UPDATED: 10:48 10 June 2020

Queen Elizabeth II and the Duke of Edinburgh picturedin the quadrangle of Windsor Castle ahead of his 99th birthday on June 10. The Queen is wearing an Angela Kelly dress with the Cullinan V diamond brooch. The Duke is wearing a Household Division tie. Picture: Steve Parsons/PA Wire

Queen Elizabeth II and the Duke of Edinburgh picturedin the quadrangle of Windsor Castle ahead of his 99th birthday on June 10. The Queen is wearing an Angela Kelly dress with the Cullinan V diamond brooch. The Duke is wearing a Household Division tie. Picture: Steve Parsons/PA Wire

The Duke of Edinburgh celebrates his 99th birthday today with the release of an official photograph marking the milestone.

Princess Elizabeth and Lieutenant Philip Mountbatten posing for their engagement pictures at Buckingham Palace on July 10, 1947 Picture: PA/PA WirePrincess Elizabeth and Lieutenant Philip Mountbatten posing for their engagement pictures at Buckingham Palace on July 10, 1947 Picture: PA/PA Wire

Philip and the Queen are pictured posing in the grounds of Windsor Castle in celebration.

The photograph is the first public image of the duke since he was seen leaving a private hospital on Christmas Eve last year, following a four-night admission for treatment relating to an undisclosed but “pre-existing condition”.

And the picture, taken last week, says as much about Philip’s 72-year marriage to the head of state, who stands by her husband’s side, as his birthday.

The Duke of Edinburgh with Queen Elizabeth II waving from the balcony to the crowds around the gates of Buckingham Palace after her Coronation on June 2, 1953  Picture: PA/PA WireThe Duke of Edinburgh with Queen Elizabeth II waving from the balcony to the crowds around the gates of Buckingham Palace after her Coronation on June 2, 1953 Picture: PA/PA Wire

Famously described by the Queen as her “strength and stay” the duke enters his 100th year in lockdown with the monarch, but is still active and engaging with events during the coronavirus outbreak.

Joe Little, managing editor of Majesty magazine, said about their time shielding together at Windsor Castle: “It’s an opportunity for them in their later years to reconnect... It is the perfect royal cocooning.”

He added: “They will make a fuss of him on Wednesday as much as you can make a fuss of the Duke of Edinburgh.”

Queen Elizabeth II and the Duke of Edinburgh during a visit to the Fort settlement at Jamestown, Virginia on the second day of her state visit to the USA  Picture: Fiona Hanson/PA WireQueen Elizabeth II and the Duke of Edinburgh during a visit to the Fort settlement at Jamestown, Virginia on the second day of her state visit to the USA Picture: Fiona Hanson/PA Wire

In the birthday picture, taken in the castle’s quadrangle, the Queen wears a bright floral dress and the Cullinan V heart-shaped diamond brooch, while Philip, with his hands clasped behind his back, looks smart in a blazer, shirt and tie, and grey trousers.

The duke is the longest serving consort in British history and also the oldest serving partner of a reigning monarch.

In a rare public message issued in April, Philip praised those tackling the coronavirus pandemic across the UK and keeping essential services running.

The Duke of Edinburgh after taking part in the 2006 Houpetoun estate horse driving trials during a two-day event on the Hoptoun estate, near Edinburgh, in 2006 Picture: Andrew Milligan/PA WireThe Duke of Edinburgh after taking part in the 2006 Houpetoun estate horse driving trials during a two-day event on the Hoptoun estate, near Edinburgh, in 2006 Picture: Andrew Milligan/PA Wire

The comments, his first major statement since retiring in 2017, also recognised the “vital and urgent” medical and scientific work taking place.

Prince Philip of Greece and Denmark was born on the island of Corfu on June 10 1921 to Prince Andrew of Greece and Princess Alice of Battenberg.

His early years were marked by upheaval after the family went into exile following a military coup in Greece which overthrew Philip’s uncle, King Constantine I.

The Duke of Edinburgh looking at a cartoon of Queen Elizabeth II drawn by Trogg for the Golden Jubilee in 2012 Picture: PA/PA WireThe Duke of Edinburgh looking at a cartoon of Queen Elizabeth II drawn by Trogg for the Golden Jubilee in 2012 Picture: PA/PA Wire

He moved to England to stay with relatives and study at Cheam Prep School in 1928, before spending a year at Salem School in south Germany, then finally enrolling at Gordonstoun School in Morayshire.

Philip went on to join the Royal Navy and, while a cadet, he caught the eye of a 13-year-old Princess Elizabeth.

He served with distinction during the Second World War and his friendship with the princess grew into love. They married two years after the end of the war.

The Duke of Edinburgh before competing at the Royal Windsor Horse Show, Windsor, in 2002 Picture: Fiona Hanson/PA WireThe Duke of Edinburgh before competing at the Royal Windsor Horse Show, Windsor, in 2002 Picture: Fiona Hanson/PA Wire

Within five years, George VI had died and Princess Elizabeth had become Queen.


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