Prince Philip has died at the age of 99.
On April 9, Buckingham Palace confirmed the heartbreaking news. “Her Majesty The Queen has announced the death of her beloved husband, His Royal Highness The Prince Philip, Duke of Edinburgh,” the statement read. “This morning, His Royal Highness died peacefully at Windsor Castle. The Royal Family joins people worldwide in mourning his passing.”
With grief will come an opportunity to celebrate an immeasurable legacy. Buckingham Palace staff will observe his death formally for the next eight days, while Queen Elizabeth II will enter her own mourning period, during which she will abstain from all work. Additionally, state affairs will be suspended in remembrance of the late British monarch.
From now until 8:00 a.m. on the day following the funeral, military establishments and prominent locations, such as Downing Street in the City of Westminster, will honor the Duke of Edinburgh by flying all official flags at half-mast. The Royal Standard Flag at Buckingham Palace, on the other hand, will not be lowered as a symbol of the monarchy’s continued advancement.
Funerals are classified into two types: state and ceremonial. The former is typically reserved for Sovereigns but may be expanded upon approval by The Queen and Parliament, according to The House of Commons Library, citing the Royal Encyclopedia. A ceremonial funeral — as Princess Diana received following her 1997 demise — is “for members of the Royal Family who hold high military rank, for the Sovereign’s consort and heir to the throne,” the House of Commons Library notes, citing the same source.
Prince Philip’s funeral, according to the College of Arms, will not be a state funeral and will not be preceded by a Lying-in-State. According to the College, the Duke of Edinburgh’s body will be laid to rest in Windsor Castle prior to a funeral at St. George’s Chapel, as is customary and in accordance with his wishes. According to The Sunday Times, Prince Philip insisted in 2013 that there would be no “fuss” over his death.
Funeral arrangements have been revised in light of the ongoing coronavirus pandemic, the College adds, and members of the public are asked not to attempt to attend or participate in any funeral-related events. Although those wishing to pay tribute may do so through the royal website’s online Book of Condolences.
Prince Philip will reportedly be laid to rest in Windsor Castle’s Frogmore Gardens following his funeral. Funeral services will be held at St. George’s Chapel for family, friends, and other closely-connected officials.
Queen Elizabeth II will presumably resume her various official engagements thirty days after Prince Philip’s death—though to what extent is unknown. Similarly, it is unknown where she will live at the moment, though speculation points to either Balmoral Castle in Scotland or Windsor Castle in England.
Regarding Prince Philip’s titles, which include His Royal Highness, Duke of Edinburgh, Earl of Merioneth, and Baron Greenwich, the College of Arms notes that “these peerages are hereditary and passed to His Royal Highness’s eldest son,” Prince Charles, upon his death.
Prince Philip stepped down from royal duties in 2017 and made few public appearances in the years since. He was hospitalized in 2019 for treatment of a pre-existing condition, and again in February 2021, Buckingham Palace noted at the time, after “feeling unwell.” After a month in the hospital, Prince Philip was discharged and returned to Windsor Castle on March 16. He underwent a procedure to treat a pre-existing heart condition and was treated for an infection.