Queen Elizabeth II paid her final respects to her husband of 73 years, Prince Philip, on Saturday, at a special celebration of life for the Duke of Edinburgh. Due to the coronavirus, the funeral was kept much smaller than it would have been. There were just 30 family members in attendance, but millions of people watched online or on TV.
The 94-year-old reigning monarch’s other half died on April 9 at the age of 99. Philip’s celebration of life, which he had a major role in planning prior to his death, was attended by his and the queen’s four children — Prince Charles, Princess Anne, Prince Andrew and Prince Edward — as well as Charles’s wife Camilla, Duchess of Cornwall; Anne’s husband Timothy Laurence and Edward’s wife Sophie, Countess of Wessex.
Philip married then-Princess Elizabeth in 1947 and is the longest-serving royal consort in British history.
Prior to the ceremony, members of the military gathered in ceremonial formation in the Quadrangle of Windsor Castle prior to the funeral procession. Philip’s coffin was carried to St. George’s Chapel on a modified Land Rover, which he designed himself.
The Duke of Edinburgh served in the Royal Navy for 12 years. Military personnel had a large role in honoring him Saturday despite the attendance limit due to coronavirus restrictions in England. Earlier this week, it was revealed senior royals attending the funeral must wear civilian clothes, defusing potential tensions over who would be allowed to don military uniforms.
Pallbearers placed Prince Philip’s casket onto a modified Land Rover, designed by the Duke of Edinburgh, himself. The late duke was fond of Land Rovers and drove them for much of his life.
The ceremony also marks the first time Harry is reuniting with his family since the Duke and Duchess of Sussex’s tell-all interview to Oprah Winfrey that was viewed by nearly 50 million people globally.
It was previously revealed that Prince Harry’s wife, Meghan Markle, 39, is not attending. The Duchess of Sussex, who is pregnant with the couple’s second child, was advised by her doctor not to attend. The Duke and Duchess of Sussex settled down in Santa Barbara, California, last year, months after the couple announced their decision to step back as senior members of the royal family.
The United Kingdom observed a nationwide minute of silence just before the Duke of Edinburgh’s funeral service started.