Strange Facts About The Way Queen Elizabeth's Marriage Works
Marriage is a life-long commitment and being married for over 70 years is a major accomplishment. This is especially challenging when you're in the spotlight, and this is just the case for Queen Elizabeth II and Prince Philip. They've shown the world how far their love and devotion can go, having been together for decades. However, no marriage is without its difficulties, and this royal couple definitely isn't an exception.
Being part of a royal family makes the situation complicated, and over the years, many strange facts have come out about the queen and prince. Even though you think you may know everything there is to know about the royal family, let's take a closer look at some strange facts you may not have known about the pair.
Elizabeth and Philip were married at Westminster Abbey on November 20, 1947. There were two thousand invited guests, and over 200 million people listened to the ceremony via radio broadcast. Elizabeth was 21 at the time, but had known Philip long before even their initial engagement.
1. Queen Elizabeth and Prince Philip are related
Some may not know that the queen and prince are actually distantly related. Being third cousins, and sharing the same great-great-grandparents, the two met when they were much younger. Elizabeth grew up within a well-off family, but Philip had a different experience growing up. Philip was raised as a commoner, he washed dishes, fired boilers, and even played on a skittles team which was organized by the owner of a local pub.
2. Elizabeth's parents did not approve of the match
King George VI was not exactly in approval of his daughter's choice of groom. He was concerned about the British opinion when it came to his daughter marrying a Greek prince. The king also disapproved of Philip's "loud, boisterous laugh and his blunt, seagoing manners". No matter his opinion, Elizabeth was able to marry the man of her choice, and she and Philip were married when she was 21 years old.
3. Philip had to make some sacrifices to marry Elizabeth
Philip had to make a few changes before getting married. Firstly, he had to become a naturalized British citizen. None of the German family were allowed to attend the wedding, which even included Philip's three sisters who had married German men. To make matters worse, the king did not want to officially announce his daughter's engagement until she was 21, so Princess Elizabeth and Philip had to keep their relationship quiet for some time until it could be announced.
4. She never took her eyes off him but he barely noticed her
When Philip was 18-years-old, Elizabeth couldn’t stop looking at him, despite their age difference. Her governess recalled that the princess barely paid any attention to anyone else, though Philip may not have noticed. One thing that the public noticed was that the duke appeared to have a hard emotional exterior, which Elizabeth would eventually see through, as she was falling in love. Both his age, upcoming military service, and rough childhood probably contributed to his lack of attention for his future wife.
5. They fell in love through letters
While Philip was off at sea, the two used to correspond with each other through letters. His service in the Royal Navy played a major part in their relationship, even after their first child was born, but he started his duties when she was still a teenage princess. This is something the majority of British families sign up for when young, and keep in their tradition as well.
6. The king and queen thought Elizabeth was too young for him
George VI and his wife Elizabeth first noticed the potential romantic connection between Elizabeth and Philip when he visited the family on leave. Back then, she was 17, and both agreed she was still too young for a suitor. Regardless of what her parents thought, the two kept in touch and their relationship blossomed from then onward.
7. She saw a different side of him
To the outside world, Philip seemed closed off and distant. He had a rough childhood and a poor relationship with his father, Prince Andrew. He had many hardships, and this had forced him to grow up young, which often left him seeming closed-off to those around him. Elizabeth still managed to fall in love with him, and unlike the others, she saw a gentler side of him.
8. She agreed to marry him without her parent's approval
Elizabeth and Philip didn't ask for approval to get married. When Philip proposed in the summer of 1946, Elizabeth accepted immediately without a second thought. King George allowed the engagement to continue once he found out, but insisted that the couple held off an official announcement until after Elizabeth turned 21.
9. They kept their engagement secret but almost got caught
Although they had kept their engagement secret. it was inevitable that someone would become suspicious. The couple managed to keep their PDA to a minimum in an effort to keep their engagement secret for as long as they could. One moments-long gaze between the two almost broke the news early, but they waited to make the official public announcement until July 1947.
10. Philip quit smoking for her
With all marriages, come compromises, and Philip made this choice completely on his own. He recognized that the king’s addiction to cigarettes really bothered Elizabeth, so in order to avoid upsetting her or making her feel uncomfortable, he stopped smoking one day without complaint. This may not seem like a huge sacrifice, but for the smokers out there, it is a sign of dedication and a challenging one.
11. Elizabeth's wedding dress was bought with ration coupons
We all think of royal weddings to be glamorous, elegant and extravagant, but this wasn't the case for Elizabeth and Philip's nuptials. Great Britain was still recovering from World War II at the time of the couple's marriage, and because of this, the queen-to-be actually used ration coupons to pay for her wedding dress materials. This beautiful 13-foot-long train, embroidered with crystals, was exactly 200 coupons.
12. The couple always had connecting bedrooms
Apart from the royalty thing, Elizabeth and Philip were like any other married couple after their wedding. When they moved to Clarence House in 1949, they had connected bedrooms. The reason for this was that they didn't want to be bothered with snoring, or flinging legs throughout the night, and wanted a comfortable, soundless sleep. When it comes to snoring, we fully understand.
13. Philip was not crowned at the coronation ceremony with Queen Elizabeth
When Elizabeth officially became queen, that didn't necessarily mean her husband received a new title as well. In fact, Philip was still the Duke of Edinburgh for some time after Elizabeth's coronation in 1953. According to BBC, he dedicated himself to her at the ceremony, saying,
"I, Philip, Duke of Edinburgh, do become your liege man of life and limb, and of earthly worship; and faith and truth I will bear unto you, to live and die, against all manner of folks. So help me God."
14. After Charles was born, he brought her roses
Philip became an official prince in 1957 when the couple’s first child was born and was the male heir to the throne. Charles was a precious gift on his own, but Philip also brought Elizabeth roses, carnations, and a kiss as an added gesture of affection, which she probably appreciated.
15. She followed him everywhere
When Philip had to return to the Navy, the two grew more in love. They first began to fall in love while apart, but she chose not to spend months away from him, and on two separate occasions, Elizabeth accompanied her husband out to sea when their children were still young.
16. They had their disagreements, but he supported her
Elizabeth became queen following her father’s death in 1952. She immediately chose to keep her father’s name (Windsor) instead of Philip’s (Mountbatten). This was something that he would be upset about for many years to come, but he still took on his new role as consort, husband and father, showing her eternal support.
17. Their second son was named after Philip’s father
In 1960, Elizabeth and Philip had their second third child and second son. She named him Andrew, after Philip’s father, who he had lost over a decade earlier. Even though this was a small gesture, she made the decision out of love for the man she remains beside today.
18. There are rumors that Philip wasn't always faithful
Being in the public eye will no doubt raise suspicions among the paparazzi and crowd. There have been rumors over time that associate Philip with women he knew throughout the years. One of them stated that Philip was "romantically involved with an unnamed woman whom he met on a regular basis in the West End apartment of a society photographer." This made Philip angry, but it was his word against these rumors, which lasted some time.
19. The couple is never seen holding hands in public
We have seen Queen Elizabeth and Prince Philip together in the public for many years. One thing we have always noticed, is that they never hold hands in public. This is not because they are not fond of each other or anything negative, it is just the way they have been since marriage, and probably like to keep their romantic side private. We can respect that.
Prince Philip is known to be a hopeless romantic when it comes to Elizabeth, but never reveals his true nature to the public eye. Philip, however, calls himself a pragmatist, and not a romantic. The two definitely make a good team, and dons the power behind the throne. Philip wears the pants, and when needed, is shrewd, steadfast, and never-failingly supportive.
We hope you enjoyed the inside scoop and royal gossip as much as we enjoyed sharing it with you. Remember to share this with your friends and family, and keep up-to-date for more insiders from the royal family in the future.