TATOI, Greece — Prince Philip’s life spanned a century of European historical past. His household ties had been simply as broad, with Britain’s longest-serving consort linked by blood and marriage to many of the continent’s royal homes.
“If Queen Victoria is taken into account the grandmother of Europe, Prince Philip is the uncle of Europe,” mentioned Vassilis Koutsavlis, president of the Tatoi Royal Property Pals Affiliation.
It’s in that densely wooded property on the foot of a mountain north of Athens that Philip’s father, Prince Andrew of Greece and Denmark, lies buried. The Tatoi property housed the royal summer season residence and the royal cemetery, dotted with the tombs of Philip’s relations: kings and queens of Greece, princes and princesses of Denmark, grand duchesses of Russia and even a distant relative of Napoleon Bonaparte.
”At the moment, it was quite common to marry others in royal households. And (Denmark’s King) Christian IX was excellent at it,” royalty knowledgeable Lars Hovbakke Soerensen mentioned. “He was instrumental in getting his youngsters married into different royal homes in Europe.”
Christian additionally despatched one among his sons to grow to be the monarch of Greece. The comparatively new state had received its independence just a few many years earlier from the Ottoman Empire, with the assistance of the Nice Powers on the time: Britain, France and Russia.
Philip’s grandfather was simply 17 years previous in 1863 when the Greek Nationwide Meeting elected him king, changing into George I to take the place of the equally foreign-born however unpopular King Otto, who had been deposed.
George I married Olga Constantinova of Russia, a member of the Romanov dynasty, and collectively they’d eight youngsters, of which Andrew, Philip’s father, was the seventh.
Aside from one little one who died in infancy, all of George and Olga’s offspring went on to marry European royals or nobles. For Andrew, that was Princess Alice, a great-granddaughter of Britain’s Queen Victoria.
“What was then essential was that the royal homes wanted blue blood of their veins,” Hovbakke Soerensen mentioned.
Just like the Danish king, Victoria was a well known matchmaker, marrying her youngsters into European monarchies. A number of of her descendants nonetheless reign in Europe.
As a descendent of Christian IX and Victoria, Philip’s blood ties prolong far into European royal households.
Present monarchs Queen Margrethe II of Denmark and King Harald V of Norway, in addition to Spain’s King Felipe VI, are all additionally descendants of each Victoria and Christian.
Felipe’s Greek-by-birth mom, Queen Emeritus Sophia, was a second niece to Philip. The uncle of Queen Elizabeth’s late husband was King Constantine I of Greece — Sophia’s grandfather.
Sophia is the spouse of Juan Carlos I, who was Spain’s king between 1975 and 2014 and in addition a distant relative of Queen Victoria.
Of their telegram of condolences to Queen Elizabeth final week, Felipe and his spouse Letizia of Spain began with an affectionate: “Pricey Aunt Lillibet.”
“We’re deeply saddened to listen to in regards to the passing away of our pricey uncle Philip,” it continued.
Along with being Philip’s second nephew, the brother of Sophia is Constantine, who was deposed as Greece’s king within the Nineteen Seventies. He and Philip maintained sturdy pleasant ties that included serving as godparents to members of one another’s households.
Different sitting royals associated to Philip embrace Sweden’s King Carl XVI Gustaf and Philippe, king of the Belgians.
Philip’s household fled Greece when he was nonetheless a child, pressured into exile to avoid wasting the lifetime of his father, who had been sentenced to dying over actions taken throughout his involvement as an officer within the failed Greek army marketing campaign in opposition to Turkey in Asia Minor. Philip’s uncle, the king, was pressured to abdicate.
Philip was married to Britain’s Queen Elizabeth for greater than 70 years. He will probably be interred on Saturday within the Royal Vault in St. George’s Chapel in Windsor, removed from the graves of his father and ancestors within the Greek woodland of Tatoi.
Jan M. Olsen in Copenhagen, Denmark, and Aritz Parra in Madrid, contributed to this report.
Observe AP’s full protection of the dying of Prince Philip at https://apnews.com/hub/prince-philip
Theodora Tongas, The Related Press