You are using an older browser version. Please use a supported version for the best MSN experience.

Britain's Prince Philip, 95, to retire from royal duties

Associated Press logo Associated Press 5/4/2017 By GREGORY KATZ, Associated Press
Britain's Queen Elizabeth, right, and Prince Philip, the Duke of Edinburgh arrive at Chapel Royal in St James's Palace, London, for an Order of Merit service, Thursday May 4, 2017. Prince Philip, the consort known for his constant support of his wife Queen Elizabeth II as well as for his occasional gaffes, will retire from royal duties this fall, Buckingham Palace said Thursday. (John Stillwell/Pool Photo via AP) © The Associated Press Britain's Queen Elizabeth, right, and Prince Philip, the Duke of Edinburgh arrive at Chapel Royal in St James's Palace, London, for an Order of Merit service, Thursday May 4, 2017. Prince Philip, the consort known for his constant support of his wife Queen Elizabeth II as well as for his occasional gaffes, will retire from royal duties this fall, Buckingham Palace said Thursday. (John Stillwell/Pool Photo via AP)

LONDON (AP) — Prince Philip, the consort known for his constant support of his wife Queen Elizabeth II as well as for his occasional gaffes, will retire from royal duties this fall, Buckingham Palace said Thursday.

Britain's Prince Philip, the Duke of Edinburgh arrives at Chapel Royal in St James's Palace, London, for an Order of Merit service, Thursday May 4, 2017. Prince Philip, the consort known for his constant support of his wife Queen Elizabeth II as well as for his occasional gaffes, will retire from royal duties this fall, Buckingham Palace said Thursday. (John Stillwell/Pool Photo via AP) © The Associated Press Britain's Prince Philip, the Duke of Edinburgh arrives at Chapel Royal in St James's Palace, London, for an Order of Merit service, Thursday May 4, 2017. Prince Philip, the consort known for his constant support of his wife Queen Elizabeth II as well as for his occasional gaffes, will retire from royal duties this fall, Buckingham Palace said Thursday. (John Stillwell/Pool Photo via AP)

Philip, 95, made the decision himself with the full support of the queen, the palace said in a statement. The royal, known as the Duke of Edinburgh, has suffered from heart disease and other ailments in recent years but has nonetheless maintained a vigorous public schedule.

FILE - In this Wednesday, May 3, 2017 file photo Britain's Prince Philip, the Duke of Edinburgh, smiles during his visit to Lord's Cricket Ground to open the new Warner Stand, in London. Buckingham Palace said Thursday May 4, 2017 that Prince Philip will no longer carry out engagements starting this fall. (Arthur Edward/Pool Photo via AP) © The Associated Press FILE - In this Wednesday, May 3, 2017 file photo Britain's Prince Philip, the Duke of Edinburgh, smiles during his visit to Lord's Cricket Ground to open the new Warner Stand, in London. Buckingham Palace said Thursday May 4, 2017 that Prince Philip will no longer carry out engagements starting this fall. (Arthur Edward/Pool Photo via AP)

He seemed to be in good health and a fine mood Wednesday during an appearance at a London cricket club. He joked about being the world's most experienced person when it comes to unveiling plaques.

FILE - In this Wednesday, May 3, 2017 file photo Britain's Prince Philip, the Duke of Edinburgh, smiles during his visit to Lord's Cricket Ground to open the new Warner Stand, in London. Buckingham Palace said Thursday May 4, 2017 that Prince Philip will no longer carry out engagements starting this fall. (Arthur Edward/Pool Photo via AP) © The Associated Press FILE - In this Wednesday, May 3, 2017 file photo Britain's Prince Philip, the Duke of Edinburgh, smiles during his visit to Lord's Cricket Ground to open the new Warner Stand, in London. Buckingham Palace said Thursday May 4, 2017 that Prince Philip will no longer carry out engagements starting this fall. (Arthur Edward/Pool Photo via AP)

That may be true: Official figures indicate he has made more than 22,000 solo royal appearances and thousands more at the queen's side.

FILE - In this June 20, 1959 file photo Queen Elizabeth II and Prince Philip are pictured in Schefferville, as they listen to explanation on workings of an iron ore mine on another stop in their royal tour of Canada. Queen Elizabeth II's husband, Prince Philip, will stop carrying out public engagements this fall, Buckingham Palace announced Thursday May 4, 2017. (AP Photo, File) © The Associated Press FILE - In this June 20, 1959 file photo Queen Elizabeth II and Prince Philip are pictured in Schefferville, as they listen to explanation on workings of an iron ore mine on another stop in their royal tour of Canada. Queen Elizabeth II's husband, Prince Philip, will stop carrying out public engagements this fall, Buckingham Palace announced Thursday May 4, 2017. (AP Photo, File)

Philip, a member of the Greek royal family in exile, has been at Elizabeth's side in countless public appearance since their marriage in 1947. He gave up a successful naval career to support her when she became queen in 1952.

FILE - In this Wednesday, May 25, 2011 file photo President Barack Obama and first lady Michelle Obama welcome Britain's Queen Elizabeth II and Prince Philip for a reciprocal dinner at Winfield House in London. Queen Elizabeth II's husband, Prince Philip, will stop carrying out public engagements this fall, Buckingham Palace announced Thursday May 4, 2017. (AP Photo/Charles Dharapak, File) © The Associated Press FILE - In this Wednesday, May 25, 2011 file photo President Barack Obama and first lady Michelle Obama welcome Britain's Queen Elizabeth II and Prince Philip for a reciprocal dinner at Winfield House in London. Queen Elizabeth II's husband, Prince Philip, will stop carrying out public engagements this fall, Buckingham Palace announced Thursday May 4, 2017. (AP Photo/Charles Dharapak, File)

He became the longest-serving consort in British history in 2009 — much as Elizabeth has become the longest reigning monarch in British history.

FILE - In this Wednesday, May 3, 2017 file photo Britain's Prince Philip, the Duke of Edinburgh, smiles during his visit to Lord's Cricket Ground to open the new Warner Stand, in London. Buckingham Palace said Thursday May 4, 2017 that Prince Philip will no longer carry out engagements starting this fall. (Arthur Edward/Pool Photo via AP) © The Associated Press FILE - In this Wednesday, May 3, 2017 file photo Britain's Prince Philip, the Duke of Edinburgh, smiles during his visit to Lord's Cricket Ground to open the new Warner Stand, in London. Buckingham Palace said Thursday May 4, 2017 that Prince Philip will no longer carry out engagements starting this fall. (Arthur Edward/Pool Photo via AP)

Prime Minister Theresa May expressed gratitude "on behalf of the whole country" to Philip for his decades of service.

FILE - In this Wednesday, May 9, 2012 file photo Britain's Queen Elizabeth II sits next to Prince Philip in the House of Lords as she waits to read the Queen's Speech to lawmakers in London. Queen Elizabeth II's husband, Prince Philip, will stop carrying out public engagements this fall, Buckingham Palace announced Thursday May 4, 2017. (AP Photo/Alastair Grant, File) © The Associated Press FILE - In this Wednesday, May 9, 2012 file photo Britain's Queen Elizabeth II sits next to Prince Philip in the House of Lords as she waits to read the Queen's Speech to lawmakers in London. Queen Elizabeth II's husband, Prince Philip, will stop carrying out public engagements this fall, Buckingham Palace announced Thursday May 4, 2017. (AP Photo/Alastair Grant, File)

"From his steadfast support for Her Majesty the Queen to his inspirational Duke of Edinburgh Awards and his patronage of hundreds of charities and good causes, his contribution to our United Kingdom, the Commonwealth and the wider world will be of huge benefit to us all for years to come," she said.

FILE - In this Nov. 25, 1953 file photo Britain's Queen Elizabeth II and the Duke of Edinburgh leaving the House Of Assembly after the Queen had addressed Bermuda's Colonial Parliament, in Hamilton, Bermuda. Queen Elizabeth II's husband, Prince Philip, will stop carrying out public engagements this fall, Buckingham Palace announced Thursday May 4, 2017. (AP Photo, File) © The Associated Press FILE - In this Nov. 25, 1953 file photo Britain's Queen Elizabeth II and the Duke of Edinburgh leaving the House Of Assembly after the Queen had addressed Bermuda's Colonial Parliament, in Hamilton, Bermuda. Queen Elizabeth II's husband, Prince Philip, will stop carrying out public engagements this fall, Buckingham Palace announced Thursday May 4, 2017. (AP Photo, File)

Officials said the queen, who turned 91 last month, will keep carrying out royal engagements with the support of the royal family. She has indicated that she does not plan to retire.

FILE - In this June 29, 2011 file photo, Queen Elizabeth II, right, and the Duke of Edinburgh walk back into the Palace after attending the annual summer garden party held at Buckingham Palace in London. Queen Elizabeth II's husband, Prince Philip, will stop carrying out public engagements this fall, Buckingham Palace announced Thursday May 4, 2017. (AP Photo/Matt Dunham, Pool, File) © The Associated Press FILE - In this June 29, 2011 file photo, Queen Elizabeth II, right, and the Duke of Edinburgh walk back into the Palace after attending the annual summer garden party held at Buckingham Palace in London. Queen Elizabeth II's husband, Prince Philip, will stop carrying out public engagements this fall, Buckingham Palace announced Thursday May 4, 2017. (AP Photo/Matt Dunham, Pool, File)

Elizabeth has, however, reduced her workload considerably in recent years as her children and grandchildren have moved to the fore. She has stopped making long-haul air flights to other Commonwealth countries.

FILE - In this Oct. 17, 1957 file photo President Dwight Eisenhower and first lady Mamie are flanked by their royal guests, Britain's Queen Elizabeth and her husband, Prince Philip, at the White House. Queen Elizabeth II's husband, Prince Philip, will stop carrying out public engagements this fall, Buckingham Palace announced Thursday May 4, 2017. (AP Photo, File) © The Associated Press FILE - In this Oct. 17, 1957 file photo President Dwight Eisenhower and first lady Mamie are flanked by their royal guests, Britain's Queen Elizabeth and her husband, Prince Philip, at the White House. Queen Elizabeth II's husband, Prince Philip, will stop carrying out public engagements this fall, Buckingham Palace announced Thursday May 4, 2017. (AP Photo, File)

Attention has been increasingly focused on her son Prince Charles, the heir to the throne, and on her grandson Prince William and his wife Kate, the Duchess of Cambridge.

FILE - In this Tuesday, April 9, 2002 file photo members of Britain's Royal family follow the coffin of the Queen Mother , en route to her funeral in Westminster Abbey in London. They are from left: Prince Andrew, Prince Charles, Prince Philip, Princess Anne and Prince Edward. Queen Elizabeth II's husband, Prince Philip, will stop carrying out public engagements this fall, Buckingham Palace announced Thursday May 4, 2017. (AP Photo/Santiago Lyon, File) © The Associated Press FILE - In this Tuesday, April 9, 2002 file photo members of Britain's Royal family follow the coffin of the Queen Mother , en route to her funeral in Westminster Abbey in London. They are from left: Prince Andrew, Prince Charles, Prince Philip, Princess Anne and Prince Edward. Queen Elizabeth II's husband, Prince Philip, will stop carrying out public engagements this fall, Buckingham Palace announced Thursday May 4, 2017. (AP Photo/Santiago Lyon, File)

The palace said Philip will continue his role with more than 780 charitable organizations but will not attend engagements.

FILE - In this Friday Oct. 9, 2009 file photo Britain's Queen Elizabeth II and Prince Philip leave London's St. Paul's Cathedral, following a Commemoration service to mark the end of combat operations in Iraq. Queen Elizabeth II's husband, Prince Philip, will stop carrying out public engagements this fall, Buckingham Palace announced Thursday May 4, 2017. (AP Photo/Sang Tan, File) © The Associated Press FILE - In this Friday Oct. 9, 2009 file photo Britain's Queen Elizabeth II and Prince Philip leave London's St. Paul's Cathedral, following a Commemoration service to mark the end of combat operations in Iraq. Queen Elizabeth II's husband, Prince Philip, will stop carrying out public engagements this fall, Buckingham Palace announced Thursday May 4, 2017. (AP Photo/Sang Tan, File)

He is not expected to disappear completely from the public stage — the palace said he may still choose to attend some events from time to time.

FILE - In this Thursday, June, 16, 2011 file photo Britain's Queen Elizabeth II with Prince Philip arrive by horse drawn carriage in the parade ring on the third day, traditionally known as Ladies Day, of the Royal Ascot horse race meeting at Ascot, England. Queen Elizabeth II's husband, Prince Philip, will stop carrying out public engagements this fall, Buckingham Palace announced Thursday May 4, 2017. (AP Photo/Alastair Grant, File) © The Associated Press FILE - In this Thursday, June, 16, 2011 file photo Britain's Queen Elizabeth II with Prince Philip arrive by horse drawn carriage in the parade ring on the third day, traditionally known as Ladies Day, of the Royal Ascot horse race meeting at Ascot, England. Queen Elizabeth II's husband, Prince Philip, will stop carrying out public engagements this fall, Buckingham Palace announced Thursday May 4, 2017. (AP Photo/Alastair Grant, File)

The palace did not offer any new details about his health and there were no indications of any new problems. The statement indicated Philip will carry out previously scheduled engagements between now and August.

FILE - In this Thursday, Nov. 10, 2016 file photo, Britain's Prince Philip, the Duke of Edinburgh, attends the official opening of the annual Field of Remembrance at Westminster Abbey in London. Queen Elizabeth II's husband, Prince Philip, will stop carrying out public engagements this fall, Buckingham Palace announced Thursday May 4, 2017. (AP Photo/Matt Dunham, file) © The Associated Press FILE - In this Thursday, Nov. 10, 2016 file photo, Britain's Prince Philip, the Duke of Edinburgh, attends the official opening of the annual Field of Remembrance at Westminster Abbey in London. Queen Elizabeth II's husband, Prince Philip, will stop carrying out public engagements this fall, Buckingham Palace announced Thursday May 4, 2017. (AP Photo/Matt Dunham, file)

Philip said when he turned 90 in 2011 that he was "winding down" his official duties, adding that he felt he had "done my bit." He was treated later that year for a blocked heart artery but seemed to recover well.

FILE - In this Saturday, June 11, 2016 file photo Britain's Queen Elizabeth II waves as she watches the flypast, with Prince Philip, right, Prince William, centre, his son Prince George, front, Kate, Duchess of Cambridge holding Princess Charlotte, centre left, The Prince of Wales, third left, The Duchess of Cornwall , second left, and Princess Anne on the balcony during the Trooping The Colour parade at Buckingham Palace, in London. Queen Elizabeth II's husband, Prince Philip, will stop carrying out public engagements this fall, Buckingham Palace announced Thursday May 4, 2017. (AP Photo/Tim Ireland, File) © The Associated Press FILE - In this Saturday, June 11, 2016 file photo Britain's Queen Elizabeth II waves as she watches the flypast, with Prince Philip, right, Prince William, centre, his son Prince George, front, Kate, Duchess of Cambridge holding Princess Charlotte, centre left, The Prince of Wales, third left, The Duchess of Cornwall , second left, and Princess Anne on the balcony during the Trooping The Colour parade at Buckingham Palace, in London. Queen Elizabeth II's husband, Prince Philip, will stop carrying out public engagements this fall, Buckingham Palace announced Thursday May 4, 2017. (AP Photo/Tim Ireland, File)

He has been hospitalized several times since then with other ailments.

FILE - In this Tuesday, May 14, 1991 file photo President George H.W. Bush and First Lady Barbara Bush accompany Queen Elizabeth II and her husband Prince Philip across the South Lawn of the White House. Queen Elizabeth II's husband, Prince Philip, will stop carrying out public engagements this fall, Buckingham Palace announced Thursday May 4, 2017. (AP Photo/Doug Mills, File) © The Associated Press FILE - In this Tuesday, May 14, 1991 file photo President George H.W. Bush and First Lady Barbara Bush accompany Queen Elizabeth II and her husband Prince Philip across the South Lawn of the White House. Queen Elizabeth II's husband, Prince Philip, will stop carrying out public engagements this fall, Buckingham Palace announced Thursday May 4, 2017. (AP Photo/Doug Mills, File)

The queen is normally quite reserved about her private life but she has described her husband as "my strength and stay all these years."

Britain's Prince Philip, the Duke of Edinburgh waves as he leaves in a car with Queen Elizabeth II from Buckingham Palace in London, Thursday, May 4, 2017. Prince Philip, the consort known for his constant support of his wife Queen Elizabeth II as well as for his occasional gaffes, will retire from royal duties this fall, Buckingham Palace said Thursday. (AP Photo/Matt Dunham) © The Associated Press Britain's Prince Philip, the Duke of Edinburgh waves as he leaves in a car with Queen Elizabeth II from Buckingham Palace in London, Thursday, May 4, 2017. Prince Philip, the consort known for his constant support of his wife Queen Elizabeth II as well as for his occasional gaffes, will retire from royal duties this fall, Buckingham Palace said Thursday. (AP Photo/Matt Dunham)

She met with May at the palace Wednesday and has made several public appearances recently. The queen and Philip were both ill with the flu over the Christmas holidays but seem to have recovered well.

FILE - In this June 19, 1962 file photo Britain's Prince Philip and his wife Queen Elizabeth II arrive at Royal Ascot race meeting, England. Buckingham Palace said Thursday May 4, 2017 that Prince Philip will no longer carry out engagements starting this fall. (AP Photo, File) © The Associated Press FILE - In this June 19, 1962 file photo Britain's Prince Philip and his wife Queen Elizabeth II arrive at Royal Ascot race meeting, England. Buckingham Palace said Thursday May 4, 2017 that Prince Philip will no longer carry out engagements starting this fall. (AP Photo, File)

Earlier in the day, a report by Britain's Daily Mail of an unusual meeting of royal household staff sparked a worldwide wave of speculation about the health of the queen and Philip, including incorrect reports that the flag atop Buckingham Palace had been lowered to half-staff.

FILE - This is a June. 2, 1953 file photo of Britain's Queen Elizabeth II and Prince Philip, Duke of Edinburgh, as they wave to supporters from the balcony at Buckingham Palace, following her coronation at Westminster Abbey. London. Buckingham Palace said Thursday May 4, 2017 that Prince Philip will no longer carry out engagements starting this fall. (AP Photo/Leslie Priest, File) © The Associated Press FILE - This is a June. 2, 1953 file photo of Britain's Queen Elizabeth II and Prince Philip, Duke of Edinburgh, as they wave to supporters from the balcony at Buckingham Palace, following her coronation at Westminster Abbey. London. Buckingham Palace said Thursday May 4, 2017 that Prince Philip will no longer carry out engagements starting this fall. (AP Photo/Leslie Priest, File)

The Sun tabloid briefly reported on its website that Philip had died. The incorrect report was quickly dropped.

FILE - In this Aug. 1951 file photo then Princess Elizabeth stands with her husband Prince Philip, the Duke of Edinburgh, and their children Prince Charles and Princess Anne at the couple's London residence at Clarence House. Buckingham Palace said Thursday May 4, 2017 that Prince Philip will no longer carry out engagements starting this fall. (AP Photo, File) © The Associated Press FILE - In this Aug. 1951 file photo then Princess Elizabeth stands with her husband Prince Philip, the Duke of Edinburgh, and their children Prince Charles and Princess Anne at the couple's London residence at Clarence House. Buckingham Palace said Thursday May 4, 2017 that Prince Philip will no longer carry out engagements starting this fall. (AP Photo, File)

In Australia, where the queen is recognized as head of state, officials praised Philip's perseverance.

FILE - In this June 15, 1998 file photo Britain's Queen Elizabeth II and her husband Prince Philip, right, lead the annual procession of members of the Order of the Garter from Windsor Castle to St. George's Chapel in Windsor, England Monday. Buckingham Palace said Thursday May 4, 2017 that Prince Philip will no longer carry out engagements starting this fall. (AP Photo/Alastair Grant, File) © The Associated Press FILE - In this June 15, 1998 file photo Britain's Queen Elizabeth II and her husband Prince Philip, right, lead the annual procession of members of the Order of the Garter from Windsor Castle to St. George's Chapel in Windsor, England Monday. Buckingham Palace said Thursday May 4, 2017 that Prince Philip will no longer carry out engagements starting this fall. (AP Photo/Alastair Grant, File)

"It says something about an individual that they get to the age of 95 before they decide to officially retire," Australian Deputy Prime Minister Barnaby Joyce told reporters. "It's something to aim for."

FILE - In this Monday, June 8, 2015 file photo Britain's Prince Philip, the husband of Queen Elizabeth II, unveils a plaque at the end of his visit to Richmond Adult Community College in Richmond, south west London. Buckingham Palace said Thursday May 4, 2017 that Prince Philip will no longer carry out engagements starting this fall. (AP Photo/Matt Dunham, Pool, File) © The Associated Press FILE - In this Monday, June 8, 2015 file photo Britain's Prince Philip, the husband of Queen Elizabeth II, unveils a plaque at the end of his visit to Richmond Adult Community College in Richmond, south west London. Buckingham Palace said Thursday May 4, 2017 that Prince Philip will no longer carry out engagements starting this fall. (AP Photo/Matt Dunham, Pool, File)

Tourists outside Buckingham Palace also had kind words for Philip as he nears the end of his public life.

UP NEXT
UP NEXT
FILE - In this Nov. 9, 2006 file photo Britain's Prince Philip shares a joke with a war veteran, unseen, following a ceremony for the Opening of the Field of Remembrance, on the grounds of the Westminster Abbey, in central London. Buckingham Palace said Thursday May 4, 2017 that Prince Philip will no longer carry out engagements starting this fall. (AP Photo/Lefteris Pitarakis, File) © The Associated Press FILE - In this Nov. 9, 2006 file photo Britain's Prince Philip shares a joke with a war veteran, unseen, following a ceremony for the Opening of the Field of Remembrance, on the grounds of the Westminster Abbey, in central London. Buckingham Palace said Thursday May 4, 2017 that Prince Philip will no longer carry out engagements starting this fall. (AP Photo/Lefteris Pitarakis, File)

"He's been an icon for so long, and I've really admired him and it saddens me in a way," said Grace Marie, who said she understood his decision.

FILE - In this Wednesday, May 3, 2017 file photo Britain's Prince Philip, the Duke of Edinburgh, cuts a ribbon during his visit to Lord's Cricket Ground to open the new Warner Stand, in London. Buckingham Palace said Thursday May 4, 2017 that Prince Philip will no longer carry out engagements starting this fall. (Arthur Edward/Pool Photo via AP) © The Associated Press FILE - In this Wednesday, May 3, 2017 file photo Britain's Prince Philip, the Duke of Edinburgh, cuts a ribbon during his visit to Lord's Cricket Ground to open the new Warner Stand, in London. Buckingham Palace said Thursday May 4, 2017 that Prince Philip will no longer carry out engagements starting this fall. (Arthur Edward/Pool Photo via AP)

___

Danica Kirka and Kevin Scott in London and Kristen Gelineau in Sydney contributed.

AdChoices
AdChoices
AdChoices
image beaconimage beaconimage beacon