The Duke of Edinburgh was 99. He died on Friday at Windsor Castle, where he and the 94-year-old reigning monarch stayed during England’s coronavirus lockdown.
The palace’s statement touched on the profound connection the royal couple shared during their 73-year marriage.
“It is with deep sorrow that Her Majesty The Queen has announced the death of her beloved husband, His Royal Highness The Prince Philip, Duke of Edinburgh. His Royal Highness passed away peacefully this morning at Windsor Castle,” the statement, issued midday on Friday, read.
The palace added that the royal family would be joining “with people around the world in mourning his loss.”
Philip married then-Princess Elizabeth in 1947 and is the longest-serving royal consort in British history. He and the queen have four children, eight grandchildren and 10 great-grandchildren.
Many would call the royal couple’s relationship a fairytale. Their love story began shortly after Philip joined the navy at age 18. He met his bride-to-be when the then-13-year-old Elizabeth toured the Royal Naval College with her family. The pair began exchanging letters and fell in love, their romance strengthening while Philip served overseas during World War II.
On Saturday, the palace continued to commemorate the nurturing role Philip played in the queen’s life. A post shared to the royal family’s social media accounts recalled Queen Elizabeth speaking of her husband’s unwavering support in 1997.
“He has, quite simply, been my strength and stay all these years, and I, and his whole family, and this and many other countries, owe him a debt greater than he would ever claim, or we shall ever know,” Her Majesty said of Philip.
The royal family also recalled Philip’s vow to be a pillar of strength for his wife years ago.
“At The Queen’s Coronation in 1953, The Duke of Edinburgh swore to be Her Majesty’s ‘liege man of life and limb.’ The Duke was a devoted consort (companion to the Sovereign) for almost 70 years, from Her Majesty’s Accession in 1952 until his death,” the post continues.
Following the duke’s death, the 94-year-old reigning monarch will halt royal duties and enter an official mourning period of eight days. Affairs of state have also been paused and no laws will be given royal assent.
Additional periods of royal mourning are expected to continue following the first eight days. The United Kingdom is expected to go into a period of 10 days of mourning, and the British royal household is expected to extend its period for 30 days.
Per tradition, the royal family members are expected to wear black or dark clothing during this time.
After a funeral service is held, the queen is expected to continue mourning in private while carrying out duties privately.
Back in 2013, Philip told officials that when he dies he does not want the “fuss” of a full state funeral, U.K.’s Sunday Times reported. In a press release issued on Friday, the College of Arms confirmed that the Duke of Edinburgh will not have a State Funeral or will be “Lying-in-State.”
Royal author Anna Pasternak told Fox News it is likely that Philip’s funeral will be a more private affair – as he would have wanted.
“I think the pandemic may support that,” she said. “A state funeral would have foreign dignitaries coming in from all over the world and Westminster Abbey will be packed to the gills with people lining the streets. I’m not sure that’s possible.”
Philip spent a month in the hospital earlier this year before he was released on March 16 to return to Windsor Castle.
In his lifetime, Philip fulfilled more than 20,000 royal engagements to boost British interests at home and abroad. He headed hundreds of charities, founded programs that helped British schoolchildren participate in challenging outdoor adventures and played a prominent part in raising his four children, including his eldest son, Prince Charles, the heir to the throne.
Philip retired from public duties in 2017 and rarely appeared in public afterward.
Fox News’ Stephanie Nolasco and The Associated Press contributed to this report.