The Queen’s husband, Prince Philip turns 90 today. In honour of the occasion, I’ve trawled around the net for a couple of his ‘best bits’. Never one to shy away from making incredibly politically incorrect remarks, the Duke of Edinburgh holds a special place in the hearts of Britons who usually think in their minds what he dared to say out loud. I think he’s my favourite royal.
* Are you Indian or Pakistani? I can never tell the difference between you chaps.
At Washington Embassy reception for Commonwealth members.
* Aren’t most of you descendants from pirates?
To islander in the Cayman Islands, 1994.
* British women can’t cook. They are very good at decorating food and making it attractive. But they have an inability to cook.
Addressing mainly female audience at Scottish Rural Women’s Institute Display in 1966
* Do you still throw spears at each other?
To Australian Aborigines, during a visit to Queensland, 2002.
* If you travel as much as we do, you appreciate how much more aircraft have become. Unless you travel in something called economy class, which sounds ghastly.
During Royal Jubilee tour in 2002.
* You managed not to get eaten, then.
To student who had been trekking in Papua New Guinea in 1998, suggesting Papuan tribes people were still cannibals
* I don’t think a prostitute is more moral than a wife, but they are doing the same thing.
Speech in December 1988, dismissing claims who sell slaughtered meat have greater moral authority than those who participate in blood sports.
* Deaf? If you are near there, no wonder you are deaf.
To group of deaf children standing next to Jamaican steel drum band, on visit to new National Assembly for Wales, 1999.
* When a man opens the car door for his wife, it’s either a new car or a new wife.
* How do you keep the natives off the booze long enough to pass the test?
To Scottish driving instructor, 1995.
* If it has got four legs and is not a chair, if it has two wings and it flies but is not an aeroplane, and if it swims and is not a submarine, the Cantonese will eat it.
Commenting on Chinese eating habits to World Wildlife Fund conference in 1986.
Commenting on Beijing, China, during 1986 official visit there.
* If a cricketer, for example, suddenly decided to go into a school and batter a lot of people to death with a cricket bat, which he could do very easily, I mean, are you going to ban cricket bats?
Amid calls to ban firearms after the massacre of 16 children and their teacher in Dunblane, Scotland, in 1996.
* If you stay here much longer you’ll all be slitty-eyed.
To British students in China during Royal visit there in 1986.
* It looks as if it was put in by an Indian.
Pointing at an old-fashioned fuse box while on a tour of a factory near Edinburgh.
* People usually say that after a fire it’s the water damage that’s the worst. We’re STILL trying to dry out Windsor castle.
To grieving residents of Lockerbie, Scotland, during a 1993 visit after a plane exploded and crashed into the town, killing everyone on board and several people on the ground (and shortly after a fire swept through one wing of Windsor Castle).
* You were playing your instruments weren’t you? Or do you have tape recorders under your seats?
Congratulating a school band on their performance in Australia.
* You are a woman, aren’t you?
In Kenya in 1984, after accepting a gift from an indigenous woman.
* If you gave a seven-year-old a brush and paints he’d produce something like that.
In the Sudan, after viewing some of the paintings housed in the country’s ethnic museum.
* The bastards murdered half my family.
In room full of press agents, commenting on Russians in 1967, having been asked whether he would consider a visit there.
* It’s a pleasant change to be in a country that isn’t ruled by its people.
To Alfredo Stroessner, the Paraguayan dictator.
*The man who invented the red carpet needed his head examined.
About to disembark on state visit to Brazil.
* You have mosquitoes. I have the Press.
In a conversation with the matron of a hospital while on a tour of the Caribbean
* Well, you’ll never fly in it, you’re too fat to be an astronaut.”
Said at the University of Salford to a 13-year-old aspiring astronaut, who was wishing to fly the NOVA rocket
* Do you know they’re now producing eating dogs for the anorexics?
Said in 2002 to a blind, wheelchair-bound woman who was accompanied by her guide dog.
* “Oh, what, a strip club?”
Response to Elizabeth Rendle, a 24-year-old, who, when introduced to the prince, said that she worked as a barmaid in a nightclub.