Some members of the British royal family openly defy the rules. Other times they slip up. With all the do’s and don’ts of royal etiquette and protocol, inevitably mistakes happen. That’s how Prince Philip, Duke of Edinburgh came to be called “Your Majesty” by a Buckingham Palace staff member.
Prince Philip is a favorite among royal staffers: ‘They all love him’
Actor Matt Smith, who plays Philip in the early seasons of Netflix’s original series, The Crown, says the Duke of Edinburgh is popular with royal staffers.
“If you’ve talked to any of the staff, Philip’s the one they all love really,” Smith told Variety in 2018. “I think more than a lot of them, he’s a bit more of a man of the people.”
He continued, saying Philip maintains a sense of playfulness despite the rules and protocol that come with royal life.
“The royal protocol hasn’t dogged him in quite the same way his whole life and there’s a sort of rebellion in him and a naughtiness and a cheekiness,” Smith said. “I think he’s quite affable and open by all accounts with the staff. They all love him.”
Philip lets the formalities slip a bit with royal staff. Instead of having them refer to him by his official title, Philip goes by the nickname P.P., an abbreviation of Prince Philip.
Prince Philip ‘laughed and smiled’ when a Buckingham Palace chef called him ‘Your Majesty’
Speaking with Insider, former royal chef Darren McGrady recalled one incident during which a new chef felt nervous meeting Philip for the first time.
Because of nerves, the new chef mixed up royal names. Instead of addressing Philip as “Your Royal Highness,” the chef called him, “Your Majesty,” a title reserved for the queen.
“I was in the kitchen and Prince Philip came in,” McGrady said. “We had a new chef in, who was really nervous, and he said ‘Good morning, Your Majesty.’
Instead of calling out the new chef, Philip found the slip up amusing.
“Prince Philip just sort of looked and smiled,” McGrady said. “The great thing about the royal family is they know people are nervous around them, so it’s not as if they would roll their eyes and say ‘You’re stupid.’”
Prince Philip laughed off a kitchen mishap at Buckingham Palace
Philip’s relaxed nature around the staff is evident in another one of his experiences in the Buckingham Palace kitchens as witnessed by McGrady.
“Another time I was in the kitchen with a pastry chef, and the Duke of Edinburgh came in and he wanted to know what ice creams we had made using the berries from the Balmoral gardens,” McGrady said.
“And my friend opened the freezer and one of the handles broke, it just went spinning around like a Catherine wheel,” he said.
Philip found it amusing and “just burst out laughing — he had a great sense of humor,” McGrady said.
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