London (AP) – At 97, the British Prince Philip really made trouble. The husband of Queen Elizabeth II drove into another car, climbed out of his Land Rover without injuries, but apologized only after massive public criticism of two injured women in the other vehicle.
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A short time later he drove again – this time without a seatbelt. After a fierce debate over seniors at the wheel, he finally gave his driver's license. What the Queen (93) is likely to experience with her prince, who is regarded as a stubborn? Today, Philip is already 98 years old.
"His Royal Highness spends his birthday privately," said Buckingham Palace on request. But where and how? The personal matters of the royals are kept silent at the court.
No British monarch was married as long as the Queen with her Duke of Edinburgh. Already at the age of 13, Elizabeth fell in love with the dashing cadet Philip, who was born Prince of Greece and Denmark on the island of Corfu. His childhood and youth were unhappy. The family had to flee into exile in France, the father hardly cared for him, the mother was mentally ill and Philip passed around with relatives.
Philip has German roots. He is a scion of the house Schleswig-Holstein-Sonderburg-Glücksburg and also attended the elite school Salem on Lake Constance. In 1947, the wedding bells rang in London's Westminster Abbey. From his career in the Navy, he had to say goodbye. His new job: Prince Consort. Not easy for someone who is self-confident and adventurous.
But he took the new tasks seriously and proved to be a particularly diligent Royal. Since the Queen's accession to the throne in 1952, Philip has made more than 22,000 official appointments. Two years ago, it was largely over: he announced his withdrawal. "Retirees" Philip is since rarely seen in public, such as at the wedding of his grandson Prince Harry with the former actress Meghan. On official dates he only appears if he feels like it. That does not seem to be the case often.
The 93-year-old Queen, on the other hand, does not even seem to stop thinking: Bravely, she fulfills her obligations, listens, smiles there, and some even think she looks younger than she used to.
In terms of hard work, the two seem to compete: only a few months ago, the seniors were spotted during sporting activities – he drove a carriage, she was on horseback and wearing a headscarf instead of protective helmet on the way. Heart problems, bladder infections, a new hip joint – the traces of age are indeed noticeable in Philip. For a nearly 100-year-old, the Prince Consort is still amazingly fit.
Philip has always been sporty. Polo, sailing and horse-drawn carriage races are his passions. Flying was one of the hobbies he gave up for reasons of age.
Philips typical mark: He does not mince his words and causes a stir with his sayings. "Are you still scolding yourself with spears?" He asked aboriginal people during an Australian trip. In 1997, he even welcomed the then Federal Chancellor Helmut Kohl with the words: "Welcome, Herr Reichskanzler". For many, he is the "king of faux pas". Others, on the other hand, believe that with such remarks he simply wants to lighten the atmosphere.