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Corfu Pays Last Respects to Prince Philip in Church Ceremony

Prince Philip Corfu
A church ceremony to honor Prince Philip was held in Corfu. Video frame

As the funeral of Prince Philip was taking pace in England on Saturday, in Corfu, the birthplace of the Duke of Edinburgh, a ceremony also took place to honor his passing.

A memorial prayer was held at the Church of Agios Spyridon, supervised by the Metropolitan of Corfu, Nectarios.

Greek flag covers Prince Philip’s casket

In London, the Greek flag covered Prince Philip‘s casket as the late husband of Britain’s Queen Elizabeth II, was laid to rest on Saturday.

Philip, also known as the Duke of Edinburgh, died at the age of 99 on April 9 in Windsor Castle.

He was the nation’s longest-serving consort — the name used to describe the spouse of a reigning monarch — and had been married to the Queen for 73 years.

The Greek white cross insignia can be seen on the upper right corner of the flag adorning Prince Philip’s casket, as it forms part of HRH’s royal standard.

Prince Philip
Credit: Buckingham Palace

His casket has been draped in his personal flag, which represents elements of his life, ranging from his Greek heritage to his British titles.

Queen Elizabeth II sat alone through Saturday’s funeral, in what was an emotional yet muted affair that took place as a nation healed from a pandemic.

The intimate service at St. George’s Chapel, within the grounds of Windsor Castle, was attended by 30 people including members of the royal family.

The duke was intimately involved in its planning, selecting the music and ensuring the ceremony reflects his military affiliations and personal interests.

The sparse congregation did not sing along to the music during the service, as per health restrictions.

Prince Philip’s life in symbols

When Prince Philip became engaged to Princess Elizabeth in 1946, he renounced his Greek title and became a British citizen, taking his uncle’s name of Mountbatten.

Prince Philip Corfu
The Royal Standard of HRH Duke of Edinburgh adorned Prince Philip’s casket. Credit: The World Flag Database & Graham Bartram

Starting from left to right, top to bottom, the standard of Prince Philip as Duke of Edinburgh is formed from four different coats of arms.

First is the simplified coat of arms of Denmark, as Philip was a member of the house of Glücksburg of Denmark and therefore the Danish royal family.

Next comes the coat of arms of Greece, giving a nod to his birth on the island of Corfu in 1921 and his membership in the Greek royal family.

The standard also includes a part of the coat of arms of the Mountbatten family, to which Philip belonged, as a descendant of the Battenberg family, a branch of the house of Hesse-Darmstadt, itself a cadet of the House of Hesse. This part of the flag is from the arms of Julia, Princess of Battenburg.

The fourth and last image on the flag is the coat of arms of Edinburgh. Depicting a highly stylised Edinburgh castle, this represents Philip’s title of Duke of Edinburgh.

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