Prince Philip, the Queen’s consort for almost 60 years, turns 90 this week and so I thought it only right that today’s sermon should pay tribute to a man who pays more than a passing resemblance to a velociraptor.
The Duke of Edinburgh is the country’s longest-serving consort. For this alone we should give thanks as it has given him ample opportunity to show off his unique style, a bizarre mix of Werther’s Original toting Grandpa and a posh Roy ‘Chubby’ Brown.
His gaffes have made him a national institution in his own right and so to celebrate his birthday I offer the top ten all time Prince Philip faux pas:
- On an official tour of Canada when asked if he knew Scilly Isles he replied “My son…er…owns them.”
- When asked about his daughter the Princess Royal he said “If it doesn’t fart or eat hay, she isn’t interested.”
- With belly obviously rumbling at an official dinner at Buckingham Palace in 2004 he was overheard saying “Bugger the table plan, give me my dinner!”
- When presented to an up and coming fashion designer in 2009 he commented “Well, you didn’t design your beard too well, did you?
- In a comment that has scarred the minds of many, speaking with Scottish Tory leader Annabel Goldie about the specially designed Papal tartan “That’s a nice tie… Do you have any knickers in that material?”
- Discussing his complex role as Consort to the Queen he told Jeremy Paxman “Any bloody fool can lay a wreath at the thingamy.”
- In 1999 he asked Lord Taylor of Warwick, whose parents emigrated from Jamaica and has just been jailed for fiddling his expenses: “What exotic part of the world do you come from?” Lord Taylor replied: “Birmingham.”
- During the Cold War the Price was asked if he wanted to visit the USSR. He answered “I would like to go to Russia very much – although the bastards murdered half my family.”
- Addressing a group of British students in China he warned them “If you stay here much longer, you will go home with slitty eyes.”
- Making clear his love for Eastern cuisine in 1986 he said “If it has four legs and it is not a chair, if it has got two wings and it flies but is not an aeroplane and if it swims and it is not a submarine, the Cantonese will eat it.”
So, hallelujah for Prince Philip and may the dawn of his tenth decade not blunt his loose-lipped oratory. Amen.