PRINCE Philip will celebrate his 99th birthday this week with a low-key celebration at Windsor Castle, where he is in lockdown with the Queen.
The longest-living male member of the Royal Family is legendary for his no-nonsense ways, naughty moments – and the odd embarrassing gaffe.
King of comedy
TO the General Dental Council in 1960: “Dontopedalogy is the science of opening your mouth and putting your foot in it, which I’ve practised for many years.”
On marriage in 1997: “You can take it from me – the Queen has the quality of tolerance in abundance.”
He said in 1956: “It’s my custom to say something flattering to begin with so I shall be excused if I put my foot in it later on.”
On robots colliding, Science Museum, 2000: “They’re not mating, are they?”
To a driving instructor in Scotland during a 1995 walkabout: “How do you keep the natives off the booze long enough to get them through the test?”
On Princess Anne: “If it doesn’t fart or eat hay, she’s not interested.”
After meeting Gogglebox regulars Sandra Martin and Sandy Channer in 2016 : “Well, I won’t be watching you, that’s for sure!”
To Tom Jones after the 1969 Royal Variety Show: “What do you gargle with – pebbles?”
Showing Chinese President Xi Jinping oriental treasures in 2015: “You can’t claim any of them back – we check your luggage before you go.”
After being told Madonna was singing the theme for Bond movie Die Another Day in 2002: “Are we going to need earplugs?”
To a group of industrialists in 1961: “I’ve never been noticeably reticent about talking on subjects about which I know nothing.”
To a British trekker in Papua New Guinea, 1998: “You managed not to get eaten, then?”
On the Duke of York’s house, 1986: “It looks like a tart’s bedroom.”
“Where’s the Southern Comfort?” When presented with a hamper of goods by the US ambassador in 1999.
To Elton John, who was driving a gold Aston Martin in 2001: “Oh, it’s you that owns that ghastly car, is it?”
Born in a kitchen
PRINCE Philip was born on a kitchen table at Mon Repos, the Corfu villa of the Greek royal family, on June 10, 1921.
His grandfather was a prince of Denmark “imported” to become King of Greece.
When he was 18 months old, in 1922, the royal family in Greece was exiled.
He first met the Queen, then Princess Elizabeth, at the wedding of Princess Marina of Greece and the Duke of Kent in 1934, when she was eight.
Where and when he proposed is a secret, but the marriage announcement was made on July 10, 1947.
He was given the title His Royal Highness but that did not make him a British prince – an oversight the Queen rectified in 1957.
Every day he performs Canadian Air Force exercises, including sit-ups and stomach crunches.
When Prince Charles was born in 1948, he said: “He looks like a plum pudding!”
During a 1951 tour of Canada, he chased Elizabeth down a train corridor wearing a set of joke false teeth.
The islanders of Tanna, in Vanuatu in the South-West Pacific, worship him as a god.
After Cambridge students challenged him to a tiddlywinks match in 1958, he has awarded the annual Silver Wink to champions.
He carried out 20,219 official engagements during his royal career.
Since founding the Duke of Edinburgh’s Award scheme in 1956, more than four million young people from more than 90 countries have taken part.
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In 2000, at Sandringham, Philip put on display dozens of cartoons poking fun at him over 50 years.
As a great-great-grandson of Queen Victoria, he is approximately 570th in line to the throne.
If he reaches 100 next year, he will be eligible to receive a card of congratulation from his wife.
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