England's royal family members are no strangers to scandal and controversy. Princess Margaret's hard-partying ways, Prince Andrew's "friends" convicted of exploiting young girls, Princess Anne's response to potential abductors, and Prince Charles's libido were all memorable news stories of their times. But the late Prince Philip, Duke of Edinburgh - Elizabeth's husband and the father of Charles, Anne, and Andrew - said and did some of the most outlandish things ever associated with the monarchy.
Queen Elizabeth II's husband, whom she met and fell for as a young girl, built a reputation for his lack of filter, seeming ignorance, and vocal personality.
The Disabled Didn't Get A Pass From Philip's 'Jokes'
In 2009, Prince Philip deeply shocked the family of teenager Stephen Menary, a young man who was blinded in an IRA bombing. When the queen asked Menary about the state of his vision, Philip piped in that the teen couldn't have "a lot" of sight, "judging by the tie he's wearing."
Menary's mother told the press: "My whole family were just shocked. We knew he has a reputation for putting his foot in his mouth so we didn't take offense, but mocking the sight of a blind boy is something, even by his standards."
He Made A Shocking Number Of Anti-Asian Remarks
At a meeting of the World Wildlife Fund in 1986, Philip said, “If it has got four legs and it is not a chair, if it has got two wings and it flies but is not an aeroplane, and if it swims and it is not a submarine, the Cantonese will eat it.”
He also made an offensive comment about Chinese people's eyes to British students studying in China.
He Joked About Education To A Young Woman Who'd Been Shot Trying To Obtain It
Malala Yousafzai took Prince Philip's comments in stride when the 16-year-old education advocate met him in 2013. Yousafzai had been shot in the head in Pakistan for advocating for education for women. When Philip met her, however, he provided some cultural perspective.
Philip said, “There's a thing about children going to school - they go to school because the parents don't want them in the house.” In response, Malala giggled.
He Endorsed Dictatorial Rule And Disappearing People
Afredo Stroessner was the dictatorial president of Paraguay from 1954 to 1989. When Prince Philip met him, he quipped: "It's a pleasant change to be in a country that isn't ruled by its people." Stroessner didn't take this comment as a joke.
As Prince Philip made glib remarks about British democracy, the "torture chambers were crammed and screaming less than a mile away" from the spot he stood in Paraguay, according to Johann Hari's piece in The Independent.