Will Prince Philip get a letter from the Queen for his 100th birthday?

The Queen is known to send special birthday cards to people on their 100th birthday, as part of a long-established royal tradition

HAMPSHIRE, ENGLAND - UNDATED: In this image, made available November 18, 2007, HM The Queen Elizabeth II and Prince Philip, The Duke of Edinburgh re-visit Broadlands, to mark their Diamond Wedding Anniversary on November 20. The royals spent their wedding night at Broadlands in Hampshire in November 1947, the former home of Prince Philip's uncle, Earl Mountbatten. (Photo by Tim Graham/Getty Images)
(Image credit: Tim Graham/Getty Images)

Prince Philip is approaching his 100th birthday this June - finally making him a candidate to receive one of the Queen’s famous special letters. 

Members of the British public who reach the age of 100 can apply for a personalized birthday message from Queen Elizabeth II, as part of a longstanding royal tradition. 

The monarch sends her well wishes to centenarians with a portrait card of herself and a congratulatory note signed with her regal signature. Australians, Canadians, and New Zealanders are also eligible to receive the letter. 

As Prince Philip is her husband, it is likely the Queen will mark the occasion with a more personal letter. However, as the Duke of Edinburgh is known for his sharp humor, it’s quite possible that he will apply for one of the famous cards himself. The royal has never been shy about his disdain towards aging, having shared his feelings on getting older on numerous occasions. 

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In 2011, Prince Philip revealed his declining condition with the witty one-liner, “Bits are beginning to drop off.” He also once said he couldn't 'imagine anything worse’ than turning 100. Still reluctant to reach the milestone age, the Duke has reportedly insisted he wants no fuss on the big day. 

The letter-writing tradition started in 1917 by King George V, who began sending birthday cards to British citizens on their 100th birthday via telegrams. His brief message read, ‘His Majesty's hope that the blessings of good health and prosperity may attend you during the remainder of your days.' In the inaugural year of the gesture, King George sent off 24 birthday cards. With longer life expectancies and an increased population, that number today stands at over 7000 letters a year.  

Emma Dooney
Lifestyle News Writer

Hailing from the lovely city of Dublin, Emma mainly covers the Royal Family and the entertainment world, as well as the occasional health and wellness feature. Always up for a good conversation, she has a passion for interviewing everyone from A-list celebrities to the local GP - or just about anyone who will chat to her, really.

Emma holds an MA in International Journalism from City, University of London, and a BA in English Literature from Trinity College Dublin.