Skip to main contentSkip to footer

Happy Birthday, Prince Philip! Here are great photos from every decade of his life

By Heather Cichowski

June 10, 2020
Share this:
By Heather Cichowski

Prince Philip celebrates his birthday on June 10. The Duke of Edinburgh has had many memorable moments throughout his lifetime thus far.

From his marriage to the future Queen to the births of his children, grandchildren and great-grandchildren, there has been no shortage of love.

Additionally, the duke has travelled the world on royal tours and with his military career. He is accomplished across sport and has helped many through his tireless work. Prince Philip completed over 22,000 solo public royal engagements before he retired at the age of 96!

In celebration of Prince Philip's 99th birthday, scroll through the gallery (or click through if you're on desktop) to see the best moments from each decade of his life.

Photos: © Hulton Archive/Getty Images, Hulton Archive/Getty Images, Anwar Hussein/Getty Images



Prince Philip was born on June 10, 1921 in Corfu, Greece.

He was the son of Prince Andrew of Greece and Denmark and Princess Alice of Battenberg.

Just over a year after the prince was born, his uncle, Greek King Constantine I, abdicated the throne and Philip's father was arrested. After Andrew was banished from Greece, Philip and his family made their way to France.

When the prince was a bit older, he was sent to the United Kingdom for schooling.

Here is the adorable prince at just over a year old in July 1922.

Photo: © Hulton Archive/Getty Images



Prince Philip attended the Gordonstoun School in Scotland. (Here is the young prince photographed in costume for a school production of Macbeth in July 1935.)

At the age of 18, Philip joined the British Navy and eventually worked his way up to the rank of Commander.

Photo: © Fox Photos/Getty Images



Prince Philip and then-Prince Elizabeth announced their engagement on July 10, 1947.

He was given the title the Duke of Edinburgh and the loving couple married on Nov. 20, 1947 at Westminster Abbey.

From 1949, he was stationed in Malta where he worked as the First Lieutenant of the destroyer HMS Chequers.

Photo: © Hulton Archive/Getty Images



The couple welcomed their first child, Prince Charles on Nov. 14, 1948, followed by only daughter Princess Anne on Aug. 15, 1950.

Here the young family poses outside Balmoral Castle on Sept. 19, 1952.

Philip's active Navy career finished in July 1951 and he and Elizabeth embarked on a tour of the Commonwealth during the beginning of 1952. Sadly, the Queen's father, King George VI, passed away during their royal tour. Elizabeth ascended to the throne and Philip became the consort to the Queen.

Beginning in 1956, he travelled the world on the new Royal Yacht Britannia and became the first royal to cross the Antarctic Circle.

In 1956, he established the Duke of Edinburgh's Award in the hopes of giving youngsters "a sense of responsibility to themselves and their communities."

Additionally, the duke began his tenure as the UK president of the World Wildlife Fund from 1961.

Photo: © Studio Lisa/Hulton Archive/Getty Images



Prince Philip has enjoyed playing polo and has a passion for flying. Here, Her Majesty presents her husband and son Charles with trophies after a polo match on April 30,1967.

In this decade of Philip's life, he and the Queen embarked on state visits to Malta, Ethiopia, West Germany and more.

In 1971, the Duke of Edinburgh celebrated his 50th birthday!Photo: © Michael Stroud/Express/Hulton Archive/Getty Images



In November 1972, the Queen and her husband feted their 25th wedding anniversary.

Then in 1981, Philip became the international president of the World Wildlife Fund.

Prince Philip became a grandfather this decade with the birth of Princess Anne's son Peter Phillips on Nov. 15, 1977 and daughter Zara Tindall on May 15, 1981.

Prince Philip continued to visit the world on royal tours during this decade of his life. Here he is in Tuvalu, an island nation in the South Pacific that's part of the Commonwealth.

He also wrote a few books related to the environment and wildlife conversation during this time, including The Environmental Revolution (1978).

Photo: © Anwar Hussein/Getty Images



His family expanded further with the birth of Prince Charles and Princess Diana's first son Prince William on June 21, 1982.

Less than two years later, Prince Harry, would be born on Sept. 15. 1984.

One of the many royal tours Philip went on during this time was to Hong Kong. He's pictured meeting Gurkhas of the Seventh Regiment.

The duke also travelled to the United States, Mexico, Sweden, Spain and Germany.

He wrote other books including Competition Carriage Driving (1982) and A Windsor Correspondence with Michael Mann (1984).

Photo: © Tim Graham Photo Library via Getty Images



In a poignant moment, Prince Philip is pictured helping the Queen Mother to Christmas day service at Sandringham in December 1999.

The duke continued supporting his patronages during this decade, as well as writing. He penned Driving and Judging Dressage, which was originally published in 1996, and co-authored We Plough the Fields and Scatter: The History of the Peterborough Agricultural Society, which was originally published in 1999.

Royal tours brought him to Russia, France, Poland, South Korea, Thailand and more.

In 1996, he celebrated his milestone 75th birthday and in November 1997 he and the Queen marked their 50th wedding anniversary!

Photo: © Tim Graham Photo Library via Getty Images



Prince Philip and the Queen celebrated her Golden Jubilee on June 4, 2002 (pictured), along with other members of the Royal Family.

In 2009, the Duke of Edinburgh became the longest serving British consort. (The distinction previously held by Queen Charlotte, George III’s consort!)

In May 2011, the Duke of Edinburgh and the Queen embarked on a historic royal tour of Ireland. With the tour, Her Majesty became the first British royal to visit the Republic of Ireland in 100 years!

Photo: © Anwar Hussein/Getty Images



The duke became a great-grandparent many times over in the present decade of his life with the births of Prince George, Princess Charlotte, Prince Louis, Archie, Mina Tindall, Lena Tindall, Isla Phillips and Savannah Phillips.

At the age of 96, the Duke of Edinburgh officially retired from royal duties after completing over 22,000 solo royal engagements.

He is a patron, president or member of more than 780 organizations and has continued to be associated with them in his retirement, despite no longer attending engagements.

This photo was taken at The Captain General's Parade to mark the finale of the 1664 Global Challenge at Buckingham Palace on August 2, 2017. The event marked Philip's last official engagement before retiring.

In 2020, the prince made a rare statement in light of the coronavirus and commended people for the way they have come together to fight COVID-19.

Photo: © Max Mumby/Indigo/Getty Images

In this challenging time, it’s really hard to be separated from family and friends. It’s also a time when everyone needs a beautiful escape. Here at Hello! Canada, we’re still busy creating the magazine you know and love, to spread positivity and provide some entertainment as a gentle reprieve from all the hard news. And with our new special offer for subscribers, there’s never been a better time to have Hello! delivered directly to your front door. Why not treat yourself, or someone you love, today?

More Royalty

See more