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Remembering the Queen: 7 Lessons We Can All Learn from Her Majesty's 70+ Year Marriage

There are so many reasons we will cherish memories of our Queen, but one thing that stands out to us is the inspirational 70+ year marriage between her and Prince Philip

The Queen dressed in a pale blue suit linked arm in arm with Prince Philip
Getty / Getty Images News / Tim Graham

The Queen dressed in a pale blue suit linked arm in arm with Prince Philip
Getty / Getty Images News / Tim Graham

We were all deeply saddened by the news of Queen Elizabeth II's passing which was announced on 8th September 2022, around 18 months after her husband, Prince Phillip, passed away in April 2021. The Queen died peacefully at her home in Balmoral surrounded by her family.

Her Majesty lived an incredible life, showing selflessness and poise in every moment of her reign over the nation - she dedicated her entire adult life to serving her country and was both the longest lived and the longest reigning monarch in British history.

Along with that achievement and many (many!) others, Queen Elizabeth achieved something else quite incredible in her extraordinary life -  something newly married couples dream of - Queen Elizabeth and Prince Philip's marriage lasted 73 years, until his death in 2021. 

The Queen's Wedding to Prince Philip

Queen Elizabeth and Prince Philip on their wedding day
Getty / Hulton Archive

Her Majesty Queen Elizabeth II and Prince Philip celebrated their platinum wedding anniversary in November 2017 - what an achievement! The Queen and Prince Philip celebrated 70 years of marriage after they tied the knot in a lavish ceremony at Westminster Abbey on 20th November 1947, which was broadcast on the radio to 200 million listeners worldwide.

Marrying just two years after WWII ended, the wedding was exactly what ration-hit Britain needed, although it couldn’t have been more different from Kate and Will’s marriage in 2011.

Like other post-war brides, the 21-year-old princess had to collect ration coupons for the material for her silk Norman Hartnell royal wedding dress and the couple had a staycation honeymoon at Balmoral. But it was the start of a marriage which has survived and thrived through an incredible 70 years, and their unshakeable relationship is inspiration to married couples everywhere.

7 Lessons We've Learnt From The Queen's Incredible 73 Year Marriage

Queen Elizabeth and Prince Philip holding two of their children when they are toddlers
Getty / Bettmann

When we look back at the life of our Queen, there are so many things we'll remember and admire about her. From her poise and humility even in the toughest of times, to her subtle sense of humour and dedication to her role - she is nothing short of an icon for our country. Amongst many other things, we will forever admire both Queen Elizabeth II and Prince Philip for their dedication and devotion to their marriage.

It’s not easy for anybody to reach such an incredible marriage milestone, let alone to do it in the public eye. Most of us can only aspire to have that kind of comfy companionship earned from over 70 years shared by someone’s side, making this royal pair somewhat role models in the world of marriage.

With over 70 years of marriage to reflect on, we've taken a look at the seven lessons we (and everyone else!) can take from Queen Elizabeth II and Prince Philip's marriage. If there's anyone worth taking notes from, it's these two. 

1. When You Know You Know

The Queen and Prince Philip gazing into each other's eyes
Getty / Anwar Hussein / Hulton Archive

The Queen met Prince Philip, who was actually her distant third cousin, when she was just 13 and he was a dashing naval officer of 18. The handsome officer caught her eye jumping over tennis nets to entertain the princess and it was love at first sight. He was not originally considered to be the right choice for the princess, but she wasn't about to let anything get in the way of true love.

Romance blossomed when they began to exchange letters and seven years later, he popped the question. Sometimes you just know that someone is 'the one'. If it feels right, go with your gut. Take it from the Queen herself.

2. The Couple Who Laugh Together, Stay Together

The Queen and Prince Philip laughing together whilst riding in one of the royal charriots
Getty / Wire Images / Samir Hussein

Looking back at those occasional glimpses once had of the Queen giggling in public, it was usually Prince Philip who was responsible. At the core of their marriage was a firm friendship and a shared sense of humour that kept spirits high through personal ups and downs.

Rumour had it that the Queen was a great mimic in private, while Philip used to love making his wife and young children laugh with a pair of false teeth. Find someone who shares your sense of humour – however wacky, weird or downright silly – and don’t let them go. Laughter can get you through the toughest times.

3. Arguments Happen – Work Through Them

Prince Philip and The Queen holding hands
Getty / Max Mumby / Indigo

On a state visit to Australia in 1954, camera crews caught Queen Elizabeth II and Prince Philip having a couple's tiff. The Queen was filmed raising her voice at Philip causing a somewhat scene in public. She later said, “I’m sorry for that little interlude, but, as you know, it happens in every marriage.”

This is a testament to the honesty and humility the Queen always showed and we absolutely adore her for that. Don’t let those couples who boast that they never argue make you feel bad: they’re probably lying anyway. The important thing to remember is that with communication, honesty and forgiveness, there’s usually a way to work through most things.

4. Less is More

The Queen and Prince Philip sat on their sofa with the paper in an old picture

Unlike Kate and Will’s big balcony smooch, the Queen and Prince Philip rarely ever engaged in any form of PDA. There’s only a handful of times he’s ever been pictured giving her a peck on the cheek; the sweetest was at her coronation in 1953 when, in an unscripted moment, a young Prince Philip gave the Queen a tender kiss.

For the Queen, it was always a case of acting professional, but if you and your partner aren’t into PDAs then don’t worry, it doesn’t mean you aren’t completely besotted with one another. One tender kiss on the cheek can mean plenty.

READ MORE: Perfect Wedding Anniversary Gift Ideas for Your Partner

5. Marriage Means Mutual Support

The Queen in a peach suit sat next to Prince Philip who is leaning over to say something
Getty / Antony Jones

When they got engaged, Prince Philip was required to sacrifice his Greek royal title, promising naval career, and his Orthodox religion for Anglicanism. From breaking the news that her father had died and she was now Queen to standing by her side at the Sapphire Jubilee, Philip was always a constant support to his wife throughout her record-breaking reign.

His sacrifice took a lot of strength and a life in his wife’s shadow could have led to resentment, but their mutual respect and genuine joy for each other’s achievements kept them strong through more than 70 years of marriage.

The Queen set an example for many married couples in her gratitude for Philip. “He has, quite simply, been my strength and stay all these years,” Elizabeth said at their 50th anniversary. Their devotion  and respect for one another showed just how strong and how far supporting your partner can take your marriage. 

READ MORE: Family Heirloom Inspiration For Your “Something Borrowed”

6. You Marry Their Family Too

The Queen and Prince Philip waving from the balcony at Buckingham Palace with other members of the royal family
Getty / Chris Jackson Collection

Compromise, with each other and your families, is something the royal couple knew all too well. Philip and Elizabeth were secretly engaged in 1946, but her father King George VI said he would only give his blessing on the condition that the pair waited until she turned 21 the following year to marry – so they waited.

Along with awaiting approval of her own father, Her Majesty and Prince Philip endured several family disputes throughout their marriage and every time something reared its head, the pair stood strong and in unity, together. 

Your wedding will unite two families, and as in any family, there are opinions, disagreements and sometimes a bit of drama. Finding solutions that make as many people happy as possible is a talent you’ll have to develop quickly - and sticking together is crucial!

7. When the Going Gets Tough, Don't Give Up

The Queen dressed in a yellow suit talking to Prince Philip and smiling
Getty / Chris Jackson Collection

Prince Philip shared what, in his view, was the secret to their lengthy marriage: tolerance and different interests.

“I think the main lesson that we have learnt is that tolerance is the one essential ingredient of any happy marriage. It may not be quite so important when things are going well, but it is absolutely vital when the going gets difficult. You can take it from me that the Queen has the quality of tolerance in abundance,” he said on their golden wedding anniversary.

When things get difficult, that's when the hard work kicks in. Nothing tests a marriage like tough times, and the Queen and Prince Philip proved to the entire nation that difficult times don't have to result in marital problems if you just cut each other a little bit of slack.

Years later, he added: “It’s the secret of a happy marriage to have different interests.”

Having different hobbies and interests that give you some independence and grow your friendship groups are incredibly useful for maintaining your identity and avoiding complete co-dependency in a relationship. And, of course, patience is one of the greatest virtues.

If, like us, you’re completely inspired by this iconic royal marriage, and are feeling nostalgic, take a look at our favourite iconic royal wedding dresses throughout history.