Prince Philip death: Tribute honours ‘legend’ who ‘breathed new life’ into Royal Family

Prince Philip: Sophie Wessex discusses Duke's final moments

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Prince Philip’s death early on Friday, April 9, shocked the nation – and the world at large. The Duke of Edinburgh died age 99 at his Windsor Castle apartment, where he is understood to have been accompanied by the Queen. As the sad news of his passing was announced, heartfelt tributes poured in from around the globe.

World leaders and members of the public alike shared their condolences, praising the man who stood by the Queen’s side for more than 70 years.

In the US, former president Barack Obama called Prince Philip a “kind and warm” man marked by his “unfailing good humour”.

Current President Joe Biden similarly paid tribute, describing the Duke as “a heck of a guy”.

Prime Minister Boris Johnson also spoke at Downing Street about Philip’s “extraordinary life”, saluting the Duke for his unfaltering bravery and servitude to crown and country.

Although born into the royal family of Greece and Denmark, Prince Philip’s life led him down a path towards a life in the British Royal Family.

He renounced his royal heritage and became a naturalised British citizen, as well as one of the nation’s most committed servants.

On November 20, 1947, he married a young Princess Elizabeth and was bestowed the title of Duke of Edinburgh, Earl of Merioneth and Baron of Greenwich.

Outside of the Royal Family, he had a decorated career in the Navy and maintained a passion for flying.

In many ways, he was seen as an outsider who not only acted as the Queen’s confidante and support but also a link to the rapidly changing outside world.

It was Philip, after all, who strongly supported the idea of broadcasting his wife’s coronation – the world’s first-ever broadcast of such an important event.

The Queen famously marked the couple’s Golden Wedding Anniversary with the words: “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 shall ever know.”

Above all else, it has been said, Prince Philip was simply put, a “legend”.

Marek Belka, the former Prime Minister of Poland (2004 to 2005), joined the chorale of world leaders – past and present – paying tribute to the Duke.

In a heartfelt message shared on Twitter, he said: “Legend. Carried by charisma through the ages but also the controversies that accompanied him.

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“Many believe that he breathed life into the Royal Family and brought it into the media age.

“He left a smile along the way, often far removed from court etiquette.

“The Duke of Edinburgh, Philip passed away at the age of 99.”

Rafal Trzaskowksi, the mayor of Poland’s capital, Warsaw, also paid tribute to Philip.

He tweeted: “Prince Philip has passed away. The embodiment of class, seriousness and, at the same time, distance to himself.

“He raised children, modernised the monarchy and always had a warm word for everyone.

“Condolences to all subjects of Queen Elizabeth.”

The Duke of Edinburgh’s funeral will take place on Saturday, April 17, at St George’s Chapel in Windsor Castle.

The low-key ceremony will start at 3pm with a national minute of silence and will be broadcast live on TV.

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