The people of the United Kingdom are getting ready to say a final farewell to Prince Philip, the Duke of Edinburgh and husband of their 94-year-old Queen, Elizabeth II, with his burial this weekend.
Many English people, for once, seem overwhelmed by the massive publicity and information overdose about the demise of the 99-year-old consort of the Queen for 73 years, who passed on at Windsor Castle on Friday 9th April, 2021 at the age of 99.
The Duke of Edinburgh’s funeral will take place on Saturday 17th April 2021 at 3.00 p.m. in St. George’s Chapel, Windsor. The Funeral Service will begin with a National Minute’s Silence at three o’clock. The service will be preceded by a ceremonial procession inside the grounds of Windsor Castle.
The plans for the funeral are in line with The Duke of Edinburgh’s own personal wishes, and the occasion will recognise and celebrate The Duke’s life and his more than 70 years of service to The Queen, the UK and the Commonwealth.
It will be a Ceremonial Royal Funeral, the same as for Queen Elizabeth The Queen Mother, rather than a State Funeral – something which is generally reserved for Monarchs. The plans have been approved by The Queen and reflect appropriate government advice.
Some English citizens have let their disdain for the monarchy bubble to the brim, with complaints about the media blitz, so his death seems to have attracted more condolences from outside their country.
Tributes have poured in for him and commiserations to the Royal Family, from far and wide, from friends and foes of the monarchy, although most of the complainants have not expressed any dislike, now or before, about the Prince himself, who was considered basically harmless and loyal in every way.
From Europe, the Americas, Australasia and Africa, including Nigeria, the mark of respect has poured into Buckingham Palace.
Here are some:
FROM PRESIDENT MUHAMMADU BUHARI OF NIGERIA:
The death of the Duke of Edinburgh is the end of an era. Prince Philip was one of the greatest and publicly recognizable international figures whose contributions to the Commonwealth will be remembered for generations to come. Prince Philip was a great man in his own right who made enormous contributions to philanthropic activities and charities especially for wildlife conservation and youth development programmes in more than 130 countries. The Duke of Edinburgh was a remarkable husband who had been happily married to the Queen since 1947 and this is an impressive record for any marriage at any level.
FROM CAMEROON PRESIDENT PAUL BIYA:
I salute the memory of Prince Philip, who was always at your side to embody the monarchy and contribute to the success of your reign. My wife and I wish to express our deepest sympathy to you, the royal family, the government and the British nation at this time of sorrow.
FROM PRESIDENT EDGAR CHAGWA LUNGU OF ZAMBIA:
Zambia joins the rest of the World in mourning the passing of His Royal Highness, the Duke of Edinburgh Prince Phillip. We extend our deepest condolences to Her Majesty Queen Elizabeth II, the Royal Family and the British people.
FROM PRESIDENT MACKY SALL OF SENEGAL:
I have learned the sad news of the passing of His Highness Prince Philip of Great Britain. I salute his memory and offer my heartfelt condolences to the Royal Family and our friends the British people. May his soul rest in peace.
FROM TANZANIAN PRESIDENT SAMIA SULUHU:
On behalf of the Government and the People of the United Republic of Tanzania, I convey my heartfelt condolences to you Your Majesty and through you to the People of the United Kingdom following the sudden demise of Prince Phillip. We stand with you during this difficult time of loss and mourning. May his soul rest in eternal peace. Amen.
FROM PRESIDENT EMMERSON MNANGAGWA OF ZIMBABWE:
My deepest condolences to the people of the United Kingdom and the Royal Family on the death of His Royal Highness Prince Phillip”. May his soul rest in eternal peace.
FROM FORMER U.S. PRESIDENT BARACK OBAMA AND WIFE MICHELLE:
When we first met His Royal Highness Prince Philip, Duke of Edinburgh, he and Her Majesty Queen Elizabeth II had already been on the world stage for more than half a century – welcoming leaders like Churchill and Kennedy; Mandela and Gorbachev. As two Americans unaccustomed to palaces and pomp, we didn’t know what to expect. We shouldn’t have worried. The Queen and Prince Philip immediately put us at ease with their grace and generosity, turning a ceremonial occasion into something far more natural, even comfortable. Prince Philip in particular was kind and warm, with a sharp wit and unfailing good humor. It was our first introduction to the man behind the title, and in the years since, our admiration for him has only grown. We will miss him dearly. Like the Queen, Prince Philip saw world wars and economic crises come and go. The radio gave way to the television, and the television to the internet. And through it all, he helped provide steady leadership and guiding wisdom. It has long been said that the United States and Great Britain have a special relationship – one that has been maintained and strengthened not just by presidents and prime ministers but by the Royal Family that has outlasted them all. At the Queen’s side or trailing the customary two steps behind, Prince Philip showed the world what it meant to be a supportive husband to a powerful woman. Yet he also found a way to lead without demanding the spotlight – serving in combat in World War II, commanding a frigate in the Royal Navy, and tirelessly touring the world to champion British industry and excellence. Through his extraordinary example, he proved that true partnership has room for both ambition and selflessness – all in service of something greater. As the world mourns his loss, we send our warmest wishes and deepest sympathies to the Queen, their children, grandchildren, and great-grandchildren; and everyone who knew and loved this remarkable man.
FROM BRITISH PRIME MINISTER BORIS JOHNSON:
Prince Philip helped to steer the Royal Family and the monarchy so that it remains an institution indisputably vital to the balance and happiness of our national life. He was an environmentalist, and a champion of the natural world long before it was fashionable, and he inspired the lives of countless young people with his Duke of Edinburgh awards scheme. We remember the duke for all of this and, above all, for his steadfast support for Her Majesty the Queen. Not just as her consort, by her side every day of her reign, but as her husband, her ‘strength and stay,’ of more than 70 years. And it is to Her Majesty, and her family, that our nation’s thoughts must turn today, because they have lost not just a much-loved and highly respected public figure, but a devoted husband and a proud and loving father, grandfather and, in recent years, great-grandfather.
FROM U.S. PRESIDENT JOE BIDEN AND WIFE JILL BIDEN:
On behalf of all the people of the United States, we send our deepest condolences to Her Majesty Queen Elizabeth II, the entire Royal Family, and all the people of the United Kingdom on the death of His Royal Highness Prince Philip, the Duke of Edinburgh. His legacy will live on not only through his family, but in all the charitable endeavors he shaped. His lifetime of service, his bravery serving in World War Two, the charitable things he set up… Extraordinary life. He’s going to be missed. Ninety-nine years he never slowed down. I admired the devil out of him. Over the course of his 99-year life, he saw our world change dramatically and repeatedly. From his service during World War II, to his 73 years alongside the Queen, and his entire life in the public eye – Prince Philip gladly dedicated himself to the people of the UK, the Commonwealth, and to his family. The impact of his decades of devoted public service is evident in the worthy causes he lifted up as patron, in the environmental efforts he championed, in the members of the Armed Forces that he supported, in the young people he inspired, and so much more. His legacy will live on not only through his family, but in all the charitable endeavours he shaped. Jill and I are keeping the Queen and to Prince Philip’s children, grandchildren, and great-grandchildren in our hearts during this time.
FROM FORMER U.S. PRESIDENT DONALD TRUMP:
Melania and I send our deepest and most profound condolences to Her Majesty Queen Elizabeth II, and to the entire Royal Family. We send our most heartfelt sympathies to the British people. This is an irreplaceable loss for Great Britain, and for all who hold dear our civilization. Prince Philip defined British dignity and grace. He personified the quiet reserve, stern fortitude, and unbending integrity of the United Kingdom. Over the past few years, Melania and I were honored to have the opportunity to visit the United Kingdom. We saw firsthand how the Monarchy epitomizes and carries on the virtues of the British People—and no one did so more than Prince Philip. As we grieve his loss, we celebrate his memory and rededicate ourselves to the values to which he devoted his extraordinary life. He will be greatly missed.
FROM THE PRIME MINISTER OF AUSTRALIA SCOTT MORRISON:
Prince Philip embodied a generation that we will never see again. For nearly 80 years, Prince Philip served his Crown, his country and the Commonwealth. His Royal Highness The Duke of Edinburgh was, in the words of Her Majesty, her ‘strength and stay’. He embodied a generation that we will never see again. Prince Philip was no stranger to Australia, having visited our country on more than 20 occasions. Through his service to the Commonwealth he presided as patron or president of nearly 50 organisations in Australia. Given his own service, Prince Philip also had a strong connection with the Australian Defence Force. For 65 years, The Duke of Edinburgh’s Award scheme has encouraged over 775,000 young Australians to explore their leadership potential. Forty thousand young Australians are currently participating in the program. Australians send our love and deepest condolences to her Majesty and all the Royal family. The Commonwealth family joins together in sorrow and thanksgiving for the loss and life of Prince Philip. God bless from all here in Australia… Flags will be lowered in honour of His Royal Highness.
PRIME MINISTER OF INDIA NARENDRA MODI:
My thoughts are with the British people and the Royal Family on the passing away of HRH The Prince Philip, Duke of Edinburgh. He had a distinguished career in the military and was at the forefront of many community service initiatives. May his soul rest in peace.
PRIME MINISTER BENJAMIN NETANYAHU OF ISRAEL:
I express my deepest condolences to Her Majesty Queen Elizabeth, Prince Charles, the Royal Family and the people of the United Kingdom on the passing of the Duke of Edinburgh. Prince Philip was the consummate public servant and will be much missed in Israel and across the world.
FROM PRIME MINISTER JACINDA ARDERN OF NEW ZEALAND:
Our thoughts are with Her Majesty The Queen at this profoundly sad time. On behalf of the New Zealand people and the Government, I would like to express my sincere condolences to Her Majesty and to all the Royal Family. Prince Philip will be fondly remembered for the encouragement he gave to so many young New Zealanders through The Duke of Edinburgh’s Hillary Award. In over fifty years of The Award in New Zealand, thousands of young people have completed life-changing challenges through the programme. New Zealanders will also remember The Duke of Edinburgh’s enormous support for Her Majesty The Queen. His time as royal consort exceeded that of any other royal consort in British history. His Royal Highness accompanied The Queen on her ten visits to New Zealand, the first being in 1953, and the last in 2002.
FROM PRIME MINISTER OF IRELAND MICHAEL MARTIN:
Our thoughts and prayers are with Queen Elizabeth and the people of the United Kingdom at this time. The Queen and her husband made a landmark visit to Ireland in 2011, becoming the first British monarch to tour the country in 100 years in what was seen as a key moment in Anglo-Irish reconciliation.
FROM PRESIDENT VLADIMIR PUTIN OF RUSSIA:
The name of His Royal Highness is associated with many important events in your country’s recent history. He rightfully enjoyed respect among the British and international prestige. I wish the Queen courage and spiritual fortitude in the face of a heavy and irreparable loss.
FROM GERMAN CHANCELLOR ANGELA MERKEL:
The death of Prince Philip fills me with great sorrow. His friendship to Germany, his straightforwardness and his sense of duty will not be forgotten. All our thoughts are with Her Majesty Queen Elizabeth and the Royal Family.
FROM PRESIDENT CYRIL RAMAPHOSA OF SOUTH AFRICA:
South Africa’s thoughts and prayers are with Her Majesty, the Royal Family, the government and the people of the United Kingdom as they mourn their loss. Prince Philip was a remarkable public figure who lived an extraordinary life and who will be fondly remembered by many people around the world.
FROM PRIME MINISTER JUSTIN TRUDEAU OF CANADA:
Prince Philip was a man of great purpose and conviction, who was motivated by a sense of duty to others. The Duke always sought out the best in people and challenged them to strive for greater heights. Flags will be flown at half staff until the Duke’s funeral.
FROM PRIME MINISTER IMRAN KHAN OF PAKISTAN:
My condolences on the demise of HRH Prince Philip, Duke of Edinburgh. Britain has lost a wise elder who was imbued with a unique spirit of public service. His role in promoting Pakistan-UK relations will always be remembered.
FROM PRESIDENT EMMANUEL MACRON OF FRANCE:
I wish to express my sincere condolences to Her Majesty Queen Elizabeth, The Royal Family and the British people upon the death of His Royal Highness The Prince Philip who lived an exemplary life defined by bravery, a sense of duty and commitment to the youth and the environment.
FROM ITALIAN PRESIDENT SERGIO MATTARELLA:
Upon hearing the news of the death of His Royal Highness Prince Philip of Edinburgh I wish to extend to Her Majesty, the Royal Family and all the citizens of the United Kingdom the most sincere condolences of the Italian Republic and myself. It’s alive in a multitude of people around the world the memory of a figure who for over seventy years has offered his service to the Crown and the United Kingdom with exemplary dedication, accompanying the evolution of his country with an open and innovative spirit. On the occasion of his visits to Italy, Prince Philip has always shown a sincere friendship towards the Italian people, who keep a grateful memory of his deep admiration for the artistic and cultural heritage of our country. Please accept, your Majesty, the expressions of my sympathetic condolences and the senses of my personal consideration.
FROM KING FELIPE AND QUEEN LETIZIA OF SPAIN:
We are deeply saddened to hear about the passing away of dear Uncle Philip. Filled with sorrow and sense of loss, we would like to send you our most heartfelt condolences on behalf of the government and people of Spain, and all our sympathy and support. We shall never forget the moments that we shared with him and the legacy of service and dedication to the Crown and United Kingdom by your side. Our thoughts and prayers are with you and the whole family.
IMAGE CREDITS: royal.uk