A look back at Prince Philip's most controversial quips one year on from his death

Prince Philip's most controversial quips are something he was well-known for—we look back as the royal family mark a year since his death

Prince Philip's most controversial quips
(Image credit: Photo by Yui Mok - WPA Pool/Getty Images)

April 9th 2022 is the first anniversary of the Duke of Edinburgh's death, marking one year since he passed away. Here's a look back at some of Prince Philip's most controversial quips and shocking moments from over the years. 

On the morning of April 9th 2021, Prince Philip sadly passed away peacefully at his Windsor Castle home, after over 70 years of service to his Queen and country.

During his time by the monarch's side, Prince Philip celebrated huge achievements, such as the success of the Duke of Edinburgh award, and the Queen's many milestone celebrations, including when she became the longest-reigning monarch.

He too won the title of longest-serving royal consort, and he and the Queen also incredibly celebrated their 70th wedding anniversary back in 2017.

But aside from these famous accolades, the prince was perhaps most well-known for his cheeky—and often, rather controversial—side.

Prince Philip's most controversial quips

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He was photographed at official dinner parties and state events all the time, dressed impeccably and appearing to behave with the utmost decorum. Despite his wicked sense of humor and quick wit, plenty of his one-liners were notoriously questionable at times.

From Elton John to the women of the Scottish WI, Prince Philip put his foot in it with people the world over. The late consort was notorious for his cutting remarks—some of which were hilarious, and some of which are best left in the archives of time. 

As the one year anniversary of his sad death arrives, we've rounded up some of his most naughty quips.

Prince Philip's most controversial quips

1. "It looks like a tart's bedroom"—1988. Prince Philip delivered this cringe-worthy comment when he first saw the plans for the Duke of York's home at Sunninghill Park. We think it's safe to say that this interior design joke has aged about as well as those oak kitchen cabinets of the 1990s.  

2. "It doesn't look like much work goes on at this university"—2005. This observation was overheard at Bristol University's engineering facility. 

3. "Bits are beginning to drop off"—2011. Prince Philip offered this TMI update on his health in the run-up to his 90th birthday. 

Prince Philip's most controversial quips

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4. "Bugger the table plan, give me my dinner!"—2004. A long wait at a dinner party left Prince Philip feeling a little contrary. 

5. "Yak, yak, yak; come on, get a move on."—1994. It seems there's no one Prince Philip was intimidated by. He shouted this to the Queen from the deck of Britannia in Belize after growing increasingly impatient with her chatting to people. 

6. "British women can't cook"—1961. Prince Philip uttered this sweeping statement on a visit to the Scottish Women's Institute. 

7. "What do you gargle with, pebbles?"—1969. Prince Philip didn't hold back his curiosity when talking to Welsh musician Tom Jones after his Royal Variety Performance. The day after, he added: "It's difficult to see how it's possible to become immensely valuable by singing what are the most hideous songs."

Prince Philip's most controversial quips

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8. "Young people are the same as they always were. Just as ignorant."—2006. Prince Philip ironically criticized the intelligence of adolescents at the Duke of Edinburgh Awards scheme, a program he founded in 1956 to encourage self-improvement in Britain's youth. 

9.  "I declare this thing open, whatever it is."—1969. Prince Philip didn't seem too bothered about his trip to Canada, letting slip this dismissive remark on his two-week-long trip there in the late sixties. 

10. "Are we going to need earplugs?"—2002. The Duke of Edinburgh had no qualms sharing his disdain for Madonna's voice, offering up this sly dig after discovering she would be singing the Die Another Day theme. 

11. "Cats kill far more birds than men. Why don't you have a slogan: ‘Kill a cat and save a bird?'"—1965. Ever the wildlife enthusiast, Prince Philip suggested this idea at a project to protect turtle doves in the Caribbean island of Anguilla. 

Prince Philip's most controversial quips

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12. "If it doesn't fart or eat hay, she isn't interested."—1970. Prince Philip revealed just how much his equestrian daughter, Princess Anne, loves horses with this hilarious quip. 

13. "Well, you didn't design your beard too well, did you?"—2009. It looks like Prince Philip wasn't a fan of unconventional facial hair. The traditionalist royal was quick to voice his opinions on the beard trends of the early noughties, making this rather personal remark on designer Stephen Judge's goatee beard at Buckingham Palace

Prince Philip's most controversial quips

(Image credit: Rex Features (Shutterstock))

14. "Oh it's you that owns that ghastly car is it? We often see it when driving to Windsor Castle."—2001. Prince Philip delivered this harsh comment to Elton John in reference to the musician's beloved yellow Aston Martin. Later, at the Royal Variety Performance watching Elton perform, he said, "I wish he'd turn the microphone off."

15. "Bloody silly fool!"—1997. In a very 'Don't you know who I am?' moment, Prince Philip uttered these angry words after a Cambridge car parking attendant failed to recognise him. 

16. "How do you keep the natives off the booze long enough to pass the test?"—1995. Prince Philip asked this to a Scottish driving instructor, fuelling the stereotypes surrounding Northern Britain's heavy drinking culture. 

RIP Prince Philip.

Caitlin Elliott
News Editor

Caitlin is News Editor for woman&home, covering all things royal, celeb, fashion, beauty and lifestyle. Caitlin started on local papers and titles such as Cosmopolitan, Now, Reveal and Take a Break while studying for her Multimedia Journalism degree. She also worked in Fashion PR as a Press Assistant for Arcadia's Topshop before becoming a part of the Now team. Caitlin went on to add the likes of Woman, GoodtoKnow, WhatToWatch and woman&home to her writing repertoire before moving on to her current role.