LONDON (WDTN) – With the death of Prince Philip creating a wave of emotions across the globe, many details and stories have reemerged in remembrance of the 99-year-old husband of Queen Elizabeth II.
While not directly impacted by the doings of the Royal Family, many Americans share in the UK’s grief. Glen Duerr, associate professor of international studies at Cedarville University and native of the UK, said while the world’s pain is warranted, Prince Philip’s health condition made his death somewhat expected.
“He was just about a couple of months shy of his 100th birthday and has been in ill health. To put it in context, England as a kingdom was formed a little over 1000 years ago, and he’s the longest serving and longest married person to a monarch.”
Following his death, Duerr said people of the United Kingdom are expected to mourn for a traditional eight day period, while his wife — Queen Elizabeth II — is expected to mourn for 30 days.
In his long-standing, yet occasionally turbulent role, Duerr said Prince Philip’s impact may have seemed subtle, but his absence will likely be felt.
“He’s long been the confidant of the queen,” Duerr explained. “And again, it might sound strange to the American ear, because you know ‘He is a monarch and … aren’t monarchs devoid of power?’ And well, not really. The monarch gets to chat with the Prime Minister weekly [and] will often engage with members of the cabinet.”
Politics, said Duerr, was just one aspect of the prince’s role. His position as a WWII veteran and the accumulation of nearly 10 decades of wisdom as a royal has earned him an immense amount of respect, and his life and death will be recognized through generations.
“Every legacy to some degree is contested, but I think in general, there’s a sadness that goes out. This is someone that has been in a very powerful position since 1952, when Queen Elizabeth II ascended to the monarchy.”
He added, “It’s is a way of looking back across 1,000 years of the country’s history as the United Kingdom. And so the death of the husband of the monarch is a big, big deal, especially the longevity. Seventy-four years of marriage – yeah that’s something that very few of us can fathom.”