When it comes to unforgettable romances, Queen Elizabeth and Prince Philip are the portrait of love and devotion. And, as they mark an incredible 70 years of wedded bliss and Prince Philip’s milestone 97th birthday this year, there’s still so much we never knew about the Duke of Edinburgh and the Queen. From their unexpected bedroom arrangements, to their adorable nicknames and past power struggles — the pair continue to surprise us!
One thing that’s certain, these old-timers simply adore each other and have a seriously sweet way of showing it. “He is someone who doesn’t take easily to compliments. But he has, quite simply, been my strength and stay all these years, and I and his whole family, in this and many other countries, owe him a debt greater than he would ever claim or we shall ever know,” Her Majesty, 92, previously said of her husband. As for their secret to a successful marriage, Philip has revealed it’s all about having “tolerance” and “different interests.” Take notes, everybody!
Scroll down to read more fascinacting facts about Queen Elizabeth and Prince Philip!
Philip’s nicknames for the Queen are adorable
“Cabbage,” “Darling,” and “Lilibet” are just a few of the sweet nicknames Prince Philip calls his beloved wife. The Queen filmmaker Peter Morgan has said he has it “on good authority” that “Cabbage” is the preferred nickname Philip uses. “I inquired in royal circles and was told on very good authority that that is what the Duke sometimes calls the Queen,” he said. The term apparently derives from the French saying “mon petit chou,” which means “my darling” and translates to “my little cabbage” in English.
They were destined to be together
Like something out of a movie, their paths first crossed in 1934 at the wedding of Elizabeth’s uncle Prince George, Duke of Kent to Princess Marina of Greece and Denmark. The future Queen was only eight at the time and Philip was 13 and it was love at first sight! Three years later, they had another chance encounter and began to keep in touch by writing to each other while Philip was away in the military.
In newly-surfaced letters that were auctioned off in 2016, Elizabeth wrote about the struggles of having a long-distance romance with Philip. “I was 13 years of age and he was 18 and a cadet just due to leave. He joined the Navy at the outbreak of war, and I only saw him very occasionally when he was on leave — I suppose about twice in three years. Then when his uncle and aunt, Lord and Lady Mountbatten, were away he spent various weekends away with us at Windsor. Then he went to the Pacific and Far East for two years.”
They’re actually distant cousins
The blue-blooded crowd is a small world and it turns out, the Queen and Prince Philip are second cousins once removed via their shared relative, King Christian IX of Denmark, and third cousins through their shared great-great-grandmother, Queen Victoria. Creepy, cute, or a little bit of both? You decide!
Philip did something sweet on their wedding day
They say marriage is all about compromise, and knowing how much his wife-to-be hated smoking, the then Prince Philip of Greece and Denmark gave up smoking cold turkey on the morning of his wedding. No patches, no nagging, just plain old commitment. How nice of him!
Philip was reluctant to take the Queen’s name
It’s no secret that Prince Philip has struggled with the power dynamic and playing second fiddle as the Queen’s ultimate wingman. Anyone who has watched The Crown understands this. And it’s not just fiction, the history books prove it’s true. Much to his dismay, Philip abandoned his title Prince Philip of Greece and Denmark and became Lieutenant Philip Mountbatten when he married Elizabeth. He also converted from Greek Orthodoxy to Anglicanism. Between 1947 to her accession in 1952, Elizabeth briefly took on the title Princess Elizabeth, Duchess of Edinburgh to try and keep the peace.
Philip made dinner while his wife was working
Who needs chefs when you have Prince Philip? That’s right, the father-of-four was great in the kitchen and, according to the book My Husband and I: The Inside Story Of 70 Years Of Royal Marriage, he always cooked dinner for Prince Charles, Princess Anne, Prince Andrew, and Prince Edward while the Queen was on duty. When his partner in crime was home, he loved to cook breakfast for her and was famous for his omelettes, scrambled eggs, and smoked haddock.
They sleep in separate beds
Apparently, a lot of posh people actually prefer to sleep in separate beds++,++ including the Queen and her husband. As etiquette expert Lady Pam and Her Majesty’s cousin explained in a biography about her relative, “In England, the upper class always have had separate bedrooms. You don’t want to be bothered with snoring or someone flinging a leg around. Then when you are feeling cozy you share your room sometimes. It is lovely to be able to choose.” Clearly their approach paid off, they’re parents to four children after all.
They’re already preparing to say goodbye
With Queen Elizabeth and Prince Philip at 92 and nearly 97 years old, respectively, friends say the royal couple aren’t naive to the fact that their time together is limited. “They will be stiff upper lip in public and keep their own emotions behind [when one passes away]. They are both deeply religious people and it won’t take them by surprise,” a royal aid recently revealed to People. Their faith and resilient nature will help them through their heartbreaking last chapter. “Their life together has always been built on regular separations. They are not a soppy couple,” royal historian Robert Lacey added.
They’ll be together for all eternity
When it comes to their final resting place, it’s believed the Queen and Prince Philip will be buried next to each other in Frogmore Gardens on the grounds of their beloved Windsor Castle. Although a vast majority of past British monarchs are laid to rest in St George’s Chapel and Westminster Abbey, Queen Elizabeth’s parents and younger sister are all buried at St George’s Chapel, Windsor Castle. Queen Victoria and Price Albert are also buried on the site.
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This post was written by Bella Brennan. It originally appeared on our sister site, Now to Love.