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Prince Philip: The Homeless “Greek God” Shunned by Palace and Churchill

Prince Philip Greek God
A young Prince Philip towers above Queen Elizabeth. Credit: Creative Commons Attribution-Share Alike 2.0/Wikipedia

Prince Philip was seen as a “Greek god” when he was young, Queen Elizabeth’s bridesmaid said during a panel discussion to mark 70 years since she acceded to the British throne.

Lady Pamela Hicks, 92, who was also Her Majesty’s lady-in-waiting and Philip’s cousin as well,  has now opened up about her lifelong friendship with the monarch.

She revealed that Prince Philip used to “show off” around the Queen and her sister Princess Margaret when they were younger.

Greek god who liked to show off

Lady Pamela is the daughter of Lord Louis Mountbatten and the great-great-granddaughter of Queen Victoria. During the talk, her daughter India Hicks noted that Mountbatten thought Philip and the then-Princess Elizabeth would be a good match.

India said to her mother: “Your father, my grandfather, had already thought it might be quite a good thing. They met when she went to visit Dartmouth College at 13 and already then she was rather struck by Prince Philip.”

Lady Pamela replied: “Well, he was a Greek god, and of course, showing off like mad because he was told to look after the two princesses, and so he showed off like mad. Later, every girl in England was in love with him. He really was stunning.”

British Court, Churchill shunned Prince Philip as “a Greek prince with no money”

India countered, saying the British court “had trouble” because Prince Philip was “a Greek prince with no money, no position in court and in fact he was pretty homeless.”

Lady Pamela agreed, adding: “They were horrified! Where was the upright Scottish or English nobleman or duke she should be marrying? Not carrying on with a penniless Greek prince.”

Winston Churchill, who was the Queen’s first prime minister, was also said to be “against” the Princess’ marriage with the Duke.

India said: “This Queen was mentored by Winston Churchill but he was quite against the Duke of Edinburgh, but she fought for him.”

Lady Pamela added that the Queen had a “hard battle” to get Philip some sort of a position and that the courtiers “did not make him feel welcome.”

“Churchill really was very constructive and felt the penniless Greek prince should be kept in the background and the Queen was too young and inexperienced to have the strength to argue with him,” Lady Pamela said.

“So it was a few years before she felt competent enough to say she wanted Philip to have a job and be employed.”

Prince Philip, who passed away in April of 2021 at the age of 99, was given the nickname of “Phil the Greek” by his British subjects.

But Prince Philip did not care for the moniker, even though he indeed had been born in Greece. In fact, he had never visited his birthplace after his father was exiled and he himself had been spirited away as a baby, taken out of the country in an orange crate for fear that he would be kidnapped or worse. He only returned to the country in 1950, before Princess Elizabeth ascended to the throne.

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