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The Queen and Duke's Marriage Come Full Circle

Jan 2, 2008
What does a royal couple do to mark such an important occasion as a diamond wedding anniversary? Queen Elizabeth and Prince Philip, Duke of Edinburgh celebrated their nuptials by returning to their roots, so to speak.

While Queen Elizabeth has lived most of her life in England, she did reside for a brief period on the island of Malta. Those around at the time of the closely watched and somewhat controversial wedding of Princess Elizabeth to the Grecian-born Prince Philip will remember the short stint the royal couple spent on the island of Malta.

Just two years after renouncing his Greek heritage and claim to royalty there, Philip was fulfilling his duties as a British royal and serving in the Royal Navy at his post on the Mediterranean island.

Additionally, he had been conferred the title of Duke of Edinburgh by Elizabeth's father, King George VI. Elizabeth visited her new husband at various times in Malta, and both lived there for a two year period between 1949 and 1951, not long after the birth of their first child, Prince Charles.

Little is known about the couple's private life in Malta at the time. It seems fitting, however, that the Queen and Duke returned to the place they spent a significant part of their early years together. And that they did; to celebrate their 60th wedding anniversary last November. The couple paid tribute to their own wedding vows by sharing the occasion with other couples who were also marking their diamond anniversaries. Indeed, what better way to celebrate such a milestone than to meet and consort with the royal couple of Britain? Said one diamond anniversary celebrant: "My husband and I were delighted to meet the Queen for the first time in our lives."

Many royal watchers and newscasters have billed the Queen and Duke's visit to Malta as a "second honeymoon." Though neither of them has ever admitted this publicly, it was reported that the trip was the idea of the Duke himself, perhaps an anniversary gift to his wife.

Their stay in Malta was only one stop on a royal tour, which included an official trip to Uganda. While they may have been able to disguise their stay in Malta as official business, many of those who had the opportunity to mingle with Queen Elizabeth and the Duke of Edinburgh speculate that there must have been an element of romance in their brief visit.

The Queen is said to have many fond memories of her early years with her husband and young son in Malta before ascending to the royal throne of Britain at the tender age of 25. At the time of the royal couple's residence there, Malta was a Protectorate of the British government. Though Malta gained independent status in 1964, the island still maintains very close ties to the British Monarchy. Those who reside there joyously celebrated with the Queen and the Duke in November. There is little doubt that Malta remains an important location in the lives of the royal couple.
About the Author
For Malta holidays information visit YourMalta.com

As well as vacations and holiday Malta details, the guide includes information about the language schools which Malta is becoming increasingly well known - the Maltese speak English - where foreign language students learn English
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