THE QUEEN has shared a poignant photo of Prince Philip as she spoke of "deep sorrow" in a tribute to her "beloved" husband.
The Duke of Edinburgh, who had been married to the Queen for 73 years and described as her constant strength, passed away at Windsor Castle this morning.
The photograph was accompanied by some touching words from the Queen.
A statement from Buckingham Palace said: “It is with deep sorrow that Her Majesty The Queen has announced the death of her beloved husband, His Royal Highness The Prince Philip, Duke of Edinburgh.
“His Royal Highness passed away peacefully this morning at Windsor Castle.”
The royal passed away two months and one day short of what would have been his 100th birthday.
BBC radio stations immediately interrupted broadcasts with the news of his death and played the national anthem shortly after in a sign of respect.
The official Royal Family website was quickly replaced with a single page and heartfelt tribute to the Duke.
Prime Minister Boris Johnson paid tribute and said “he 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.”
The royal was taken to London’s King Edward VII Hospital on February 16 after feeling unwell.
Two weeks later, he was transferred to St Bart’s Hospital for treatment for an infection and heart condition.
Buckingham Palace then announced on Tuesday, March 16 he had been released from hospital and was in "good spirits" and "comfortable".
Philip had dedicated his life to the Queen and tragically died just before his 100th birthday in June this year.
And his death comes after a turmoil-filled 12 months for the royals after Meghan Markle and Prince Harry quit the royal family.
He had retired from his public duties at the age of 96 in 2017 after 65 years of public life.
But despite retiring, the Royal last year issued a message of thanks to NHS workers facing the coronavirus pandemic.
He also made a rare appearance in public to pass on his role as Colonel-in-Chief of the Rifles to Camilla Parker Bowles.
In recent years, the duke had recently struggled with ill-health, spending time in hospital before Christmas in 2019 following a fall.
He was also involved in a car crash in January 2019 after his vehicle collided with another vehicle near the Sandringham estate.
It comes as:
- Queen shares poignant photo of Philip as she talks of ‘deep sorrow’
- Prince Philip funeral arrangements are revealed
- What happens next after Prince Philip’s death?
- When would Prince Philip have turned 100?
- Will there be a Bank Holiday on the day of Philip’s funeral?
His health scares have included heart problems, arthritis, abdominal surgery and bladder infections.
In April 2018 he had a hip replacement operation but had recovered well for Prince Harry and Meghan Markle’s wedding a month later.
The royal was born on the Greek island of Corfu on June 10, 1921, to parents Princess Anne of Battenberg and Prince Andrew of Greece and Denmark.
Soon after his birth, his family was banished from Greece and as a baby he was carried onto a British naval vessel in an orange crate.
He then went onto be educated at The Elms then onto Cheam School before going to school in Germany.
Philip then became a cadet at the Royal Naval College in Dartmouth before making his way up the ranks in the Royal Navy.
In 1942, he became first lieutenant of HMS Wallace, and at 21-years-old was one of the youngest first lieutenants in the Royal Navy
He married Elizabeth in 1947 at Westminster Abbey, described as her "constant strength", after the pair met at the wedding of Princess Marina of Greece and Denmark and Prince George, Duke of Kent, in 1934.
The royal pair then went on to have four children together – Charles, Prince of Wales, born 1948; Anne, Princess Royal, born 1950; Andrew, Duke of York, born 1960; and Edward, Earl of Wessex, born 1964.
They have eight grandchildren: Prince William, Prince Harry, Peter Phillips, Zara Phillips, Princess Beatrice, Princess Eugenie, Lady Louse Windsor, and James, Viscount Severn.
They have another eight great-grandchildren including Savannah Phillips, Isla Phillips, Prince George, Mia Tindall, Princess Charlotte, Prince Louis, Lena Tindall, Archie Mountbatten-Windsor and August Philip Brooksbank.
Their latest great-grandson August, the son of Princess Eugenie and husband Jack, was given the middle name Philip in honour of the Duke of Edinburgh.
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