Queen Elizabeth II news: How Queen made special exception for Prince Philip’s title
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Queen Elizabeth II, then known as Princess Elizabeth, married Philip Mountbatten in 1947. Although he is known nowadays by everyone as Prince Philip, the Queen’s husband has not always held the title of Prince.
Prince Philip was born a Prince of Greece and Denmark, but his grandfather King Constantine I was forced to abdicate and the family was driven out of Greece.
Philip was taken under the wing of his mother’s uncle Lord Louis Mountbatten, and he became a British citizen – taking on the surname of Mountbatten.
However, Philip had to renounce all of his own royal titles when he married the future Queen Elizabeth II.
King George VI created the title of Duke of Edinburgh for his son-in-law when he married Elizabeth, and it is a title Philip has kept ever since.
But in 1957 the Queen made an unprecedented decision to introduce a significant change to Philip’s royal title.
In British royal history, male heirs who take the throne become King, and their wives become Queen Consort.
However, when a Queen ascends the throne in her own right, her husband is not entitled to be known as King.
There have been few cases of queens on the throne in British history, and usually each queen has implemented different titles for their husbands over the centuries.
Prior to Queen Elizabeth II, the most recent queen was Queen Victoria, who was devoted to her husband Prince Albert.
Queen Victoria awarded her husband with the unique title of Prince Consort in 1857.
But rather than sticking with the precedent set by her great-great-grandmother, the current Queen opted for a different title for her husband.
Philip became a Prince of the United Kingdom, rather than Prince Consort, and he also retained his title as Duke of Edinburgh.
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A statement from the time read, according to Town & Country: “The Queen has been pleased by Letters Patent under the Great Seal of the Realm bearing date February 22, 1957, to give and grant unto His Royal Highness the Duke of Edinburgh, K.G., K.T., G.B.E., the style and titular dignity of a Prince of the United Kingdom of Great Britain and Northern Ireland, Whitehall.
“The Queen has been pleased to declare her will and pleasure that His Royal Highness the Duke of Edinburgh shall henceforth be known as His Royal Highness The Prince Philip, Duke of Edinburgh.”
The name of the monarch’s spouse is also likely to see a significant alteration under the reign of the next in line to the throne, Prince Charles.
Prince Charles married Camilla Parker-Bowles in 2005, who subsequently became known as Camilla, Duchess of Cornwall.
And although she will one day be the wife of a king, she is not currently expected to hold the title of Queen Consort.
At the time of her marriage to Charles, it was announced Camilla would be styled as Princess Consort when Charles is King.
The decision was made out of respect for the late Princess Diana, whom Charles married in 1981 but later divorced.
Despite their divorce, Diana was allowed to keep her style as Diana, Princess of Wales.
Out of respect for Diana, it is also the case Camilla does not publicly use the Princess of Wales title even though she currently holds it.
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