“Nobody understands Elizabeth more than Philip,” former royal butler Paul Burrell, who worked for the couple for 11 years, exclusively told Closer Weekly in the magazine’s latest issue, on newsstands now. “He has been her mainstay for most of her life. They have no secrets. They have lived through traumas and ordeals but have stayed on course as a committed couple.”
Queen Elizabeth, 93, and Prince Philip, 98, got married in 1947 and have stayed together ever since. Unlike most marriages, their union has never wavered or fallen apart. One thing the queen admires about her hubby is his bluntness and ability to lead.
“She is the monarch and head of state on the public stage, but he is the head of the family behind closed doors,” Paul explained. “She would always refer all household questions to her husband.”
Not only that, but the Duke of Edinburgh would always stick to his guns, even if it came to his staff. “Prince Philip is not a man to be messed with; he does not suffer fools gladly. I have seen grown men walk out of his room in tears,” Paul confided.
However, he admits the prince has a softer side too. “He can be kind, gentle and generous, especially with ladies,” he said.
Right before Christmas Eve, Prince Philip gave everyone a scare when he was hospitalized for a “pre-existing condition.”
“He is extremely sick and doesn’t have long,” a source told Closer. With limited time on the clock, Queen Elizabeth has been trying to spend as much time as possible with Philip, so she’s been talking “every day on the phone” with him. Other than that, she’s just been enjoying their time together.
“She has had Prince Philip beside her for most of her life and for that she is grateful,” Paul explained. “They have had an exceptional marriage.”
For more on the royal family, pick up the latest issue of Closer Weekly, on newsstands now — and be sure to sign up for our newsletter for more exclusive news!