Despite the restrictions imposed by the pandemic and the royal family’s demand for the public to avoid visits to their homes, Buckingham Palace and Windsor Castle woke up on Saturday (10) with bouquets of flowers and letters left by the British in honor of Prince Philip, killed Friday (9).
“I brought yellow roses, which symbolize friendship, because I think that’s what he showed people,” Joanna Reesby, 60, said outside the palace.
Across the UK – from the Tower of London to Edinburgh castles and Royal Navy ships – the sound of armed forces guns sounded at noon (8 a.m. Brasilia time) on the first of 41 greetings in honor of Queen Elizabeth’s second husband.
On their social media, the Royal Family posted a photo of the Duke of Edinburgh and The Queen on their 50th wedding anniversary in 1997, with a tribute written by Elizabeth around that time.
“He has just been my strength and my permanence for all these years, and I and his whole family, and this country and many other countries, owe him a greater debt than he could ever imagine,” the text.
Family members visited the Queen at Windsor Castle, where Philip died at age 99, two months before his 100th birthday. “The Queen has been amazing,” said Sophie, the Countess of Wessex, as she dated her husband Prince Edward, the youngest son of Elizabeth and Philip.
The cause of death has not yet been released, but the prince had undergone heart procedures in recent months, during which he was hospitalized for four weeks.
Due to the coronavirus pandemic, Philip will not have a state funeral with the traditional pomp of this type of event. The College of Arms, the royal institution responsible for the ceremony, issued a statement saying the body will remain in Windsor until the funeral in St. George’s Chapel in the Castle area.
The agency also asked the population not to try to attend or participate in any act of the ceremony. The office of British Prime Minister Boris Johnson has also recommended that people stop bringing flowers to royal residences in order to avoid overcrowding and transmission of the coronavirus.
Buckingham Palace and other buildings across the country have lowered their flags at half mast in mourning.
Philippos Schleswig-Holstein Sonderburg-Glucksburg was born in 1921, on the Greek island of Corfu, in a house marked by misfortune. Still linked to the Danish Crown, Philip’s family were forced into exile as a baby after a military uprising.
Philip passed through France and eventually went to live in England with his maternal grandmother, who was also the granddaughter of Queen Victoria (1819-1901) – making him a distant cousin of Elizabeth, 94 years.
He joined the Navy and in 1939 met Elizabeth during a visit by the Princess to the British Naval Academy, where the then student was assigned to co-founder of the Heir to the Throne.
When they married in 1947, Philip became a British citizen, converted to the Anglican faith, and abdicated his rights to foreign thrones. He became Duke of Edinburgh, the main of his many titles.
He continued to play a pivotal role in helping the monarchy adjust to a changing world in the post-war period and only left public office in 2017.
“I think he will be remembered as a modernizer in many ways, as someone who both inside and outside the palace was a force for change,” said Simon Lewis, secretary to the Queen’s communication from 1998 to 2001, to the Reuters news agency.
“I think they [Philip e Elizabeth] it was the most amazing partnership and it’s going to be a huge gap, ”he said. “I think he always saw himself partly as the eyes and ears of the Queen, and that is gone forever.”
During Premier League football matches, there will be a minute of silence in honor of the prince.
On Friday night, the bells of Westminster Abbey, where they were married, rang 99 times, once a minute, in honor of the prince’s 99 years of life.