Portrait of a marriage:
She was a smitten 21-year-old Princess, he was a dashing 26-year-old naval lieutenant and, 70 years on, their love is stronger than ever,
the Queen and Prince Philip celebrate 70 years together
In his letter to his daughter following a bittersweet day on November 20, 1947, walking his “Lilibet” up the aisle, King George VI wrote, “I can see that you are sublimely happy with Philip, which is right, but don’t forget us.”
It was a love match that young Princess Elizabeth had fought for. She first met naval officer Prince Philip of Greece and Denmark when she was an impressionable 13-year-old, but her father made her wait until after her 21st birthday to become engaged.
Five years later, the young couple, now with two children, were thrust into the biggest jobs in the land when the King died and Lilibet became Queen Elizabeth II. “Lilibet is the only ‘thing’ in this world which is absolutely real to me and my ambition is to weld the two of us into a combined existence that will not only be able to withstand the shocks directed at us, but will also have a positive existence for the good,” Philip wrote in a letter to his motherin-law. Over the next seven decades, he certainly achieved that.
“My husband has been my strength and stay all these years,” said the Queen in a speech to mark their 50th wedding anniversary. We wish the royal couple a very happy 70th anniversary.
The happy couple photographed on their honeymoon at Broadlands, Hampshire, on November 24, 1947.