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Prince Philip funeral: King Carl XVI Gustaf of Sweden leads European royals paying tribute

Sweden's King Carl XVI Gustaf and Queen Sonja have led European royals paying tribute to the Duke of Edinburgh, as the world watches on his funeral. 

Carl XVI Gustaf, a distant cousin of the Queen through his great-great-grandmother Queen Victoria, described Prince Philip as a 'good friend' in a tribute shared following his death last week.

Today a post on the official Swedish Royal Family Instagram account paid tribute to Prince Philip and the Queen, and revealed wreaths had been sent to Her Majesty. 

The Danish royal family also joined European royalty in paying tribute to the Duke of Edinburgh, who was born as a Prince of Denmark and Greece, in a post on their official Instagram page.

The Irish flag flew at half mast at Aras An Uachtarain, the official residence and principal workplace of the President of Ireland, in tribute to the prince. 

And in Malta, where Philip lived with the Queen for two years in the 1950, a nine-gun salute was fired this morning before the funeral to to honour the duke in Valletta.

The Swedish Royal Family post included a number of photographs from state visits to Sweden in 1956 and 1983. 

The Queen and the Duke of Edinburgh with Sweden's King Carl XVI Gustaf and Queen Sonja, the current King and Queen, in 1983

The Queen and the Duke of Edinburgh with Gustaf VI Adolf and Queen Louise, who was the Duke of Edinburgh's aunt through the Mountbattens, on their state visit to Sweden in 1956. Gustaf VI Adolf was the grandfather of the current king, Carl XVI Gustaf

The Duke of Edinburgh and the Queen share a light-hearted moment with Gustaf VI Adolf and Queen Louise on the 1956 state visit

The Irish flag flying at half mast at Aras An Uachtarain, the official residence and principal workplace of the President of Ireland, in a mark of respect to mark for the Duke of Edinburgh

A nine-gun salute is fired to honour Prince Philip before his funeral, at the Upper Barrakka Saluting Battery overlooking Grand Harbour in Valletta, Malta

The caption also revealed the bell at Stockholm's Riddarholmen Church will ring out in tribute.

The post, translated from Swedish, reads: 'Today the Duke of Edinburgh is taken to his final resting place.

'The duke visited Sweden several times. Together with Queen Elisabeth, he paid state visits to both King Gustaf VI Adolf and Queen Louise - who was the Duke's aunt - as well as to the current King and Queen.

'As a final tribute, the Royal Family has sent flower wreaths to today's funeral service in Windsor, which [has been reduced in size] due to the pandemic. 

The Queen and the Duke of Edinburgh with members of the Swedish royal family on the 1983 state visit

The Duke of Edinburgh with his aunt, Louise Mountbatten, during the 1956 state visit. Queen Louise, born Louise Mountbatten, was the sister of Prince Philip's mother Alice of Battenberg

'In Stockholm, Riddarholmskyrkan's big bell will ring between kl. 12:00 and 13:00 to honor the Duke of Edinburgh, who was a Knight of the King. Order of Seraphim.

'A number of photographs from the British state visits in 1956 and 1983 are published here.'

Game of thrones! How Queen Victoria sat at the centre of a spider's web of European royal connections 

With nine children of her own and 42 grandchildren, Queen Victoria sat at the centre of a spider’s web of royal connections across Europe.

Her husband Prince Albert of Saxe-Coburg and Gotha had dreamt of a Europe held together by family connections, and Victoria was determined to carry out his wishes.

They married their offspring into royal and noble families across the continent, earning Victoria the nickname 'the grandmother of Europe'.

Eight of their children married into royal houses, starting with Vicky, who wed the Crown Prince of Prussia.

But after Albert's death in 1861, Victoria retreated from public appearances and became known for wearing black and living in mourning.

King Carl XVI Gustaf of Sweden, is descended from Queen Victoria twice as his parents were second cousins because they were both her great-grandchildren.

The first time Prince Philip and the Queen visited, in 1956, King Gustaf VI Adolf and Queen Louise were on the throne. 

Queen Louise, born Louise Mountbatten, was the sister of Prince Philip's mother Alice of Battenberg.

On King Gustaf VI Adolf's death in 1973, his grandson King Carl XVI Gustaf ascended the throne and hosted the Queen and the Duke of Edinburgh on their visit in 1983. 

In a statement released last week, he called the Duke of Edinburgh 'a good friend of our family [and] a friendship we have placed great value on.'

In a statement, he said: 'The Queen and I were deeply saddened to learn of the death of His Royal Highness The Duke of Edinburgh. 

'Prince Philip has been a great friend of our family for many years, a relation which we have deeply valued. His service to his country will remain an inspiration to us all. 

'We offer our sincere condolences to Her Majesty The Queen, The Royal Family and the people of the United Kingdom.' 

The King and Queen of Sweden, as well as the heads of other European monarchies, would have been extended an invite had the funeral been held under more normal circumstances. 

Today just 30 mourners, including the Queen, her four children, eight grandchildren, and their respective spouses, will gather at St George's Chapel, Windsor, to remember the Duke of Edinburgh, who died last Friday aged 99. 

Queen Margrethe II of Denmark, who was Philip's cousin, also paid tribute to the Duke of Edinburgh in a post on the official Instagram page for the Danish Royal House.

The post included a picture of Prince Philip's coat of arms, Amalienborg, the residence of the royal family, and the Order of the Elephant badge, which Prince Philip was awarded in 1947.

In a lengthy caption, it was revealed that a half flag will be flown at Amalienborg, the residence of the royal family, when Philip is buried at St George's Chapel in Windsor Castle at 4pm.

In a statement (above), he said: 'The Queen and I were deeply saddened to learn of the death of His Royal Highness The Duke of Edinburgh'

It also revealed that Danish and Greek decorations will be placed at the Duke of Edinburgh's funeral to mark his heritage, as he was born a Prince of Denmark and Greece.

The post, which was translated from Danish, read: 'At 16.00 today Danish time, His Royal Highness Prince Philip, Duke of Edinburgh will be buried from St. George's Chapel at Windsor Castle. 

'On that occasion, half a flag is flown at Amalienborg. The prince, who for more than 73 years was married to Her Majesty Queen Elizabeth II, was born the prince of Greece and Denmark. 

'At the funeral, Prince Philips' Danish and Greek decorations will be placed in the church together with the Prince's decorations from Great Britain and the Commonwealth countries. 

'Prince Philip, Duke of Edinburgh, was awarded the Order of the Elephant on 16 November 1947. As a Knight of the Order of the Elephant, Prince Philip had his coat of arms hung in the Knights' Chapel in Frederiksborg Castle Church.

'Prince Philip was born Prince of Greece and Denmark and until 1947 carried the Greek royal coat of arms. In the period 1947-1949, Prince Philip carried the weapon shown here. 

'It is the Greek royal coat of arms with a shield inserted at the top left with the coat of arms for his great-grandmother on the mother's side, Princess Alice, daughter of Queen Victoria. Prince Philips' shield is held by two shield holders. 

Queen Margrethe II of Denmark, who was Philip's cousin, also paid tribute to the Duke of Edinburgh in a post on the official Instagram page for the Danish Royal House

The post included a picture of Prince Philip's coat of arms and revealed that a half flag will fly at Amalienborg, the residence of the Danish royal family, when Philip is buried

'To the left Hercules from the Greek royal coat of arms and to the right a lion derived from the coat of arms of Prince Philips' grandfather, Prince Louis of Battenberg, later Mountbatten. This lion has had a so-called ship's crown added around his neck as a reference to Prince Philips' career in the British navy.⁣

'The shield is crowned with a special crown and above this a royal helmet is placed. From the helmet hangs a helmet cloth in gold and ermine.

'In addition, this helmet cloth and the royal helmet are used only by the British monarch and by the heir to the throne. On the helmet there is a so-called helmet mark, which consists of black and white ostrich feathers. The helmet sign is also inspired by Mountbatten's weapon. 

'About the shield is seen the Order of the Hose with the motto of the order HONI SOIT QUI MAL Y PENSE (Shame on those who think badly of it). Prince Philip led the election slogan "God is my help".

'In 1949, Prince Philip received a new weapon, where the shield contained coats of arms for Denmark, Greece, Mountbatten and Edinburgh. The other elements of the weapon remained unchanged. As is the tradition for Knights of the Order of the Elephant, the original knight's shield in the chapel was not changed on that occasion.'

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