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He has eight grandchildren, so what is Prince Philip like as a grandfather?

Whilst Queen Elizabeth II is the leader in the royal family’s public duties, Prince Philip, her husband, is by all accounts a leader and rock for the family’s private matters.

Whilst his public interactions with his grandchildren and great-grandchildren have been few, particularly since he retired, such absence should not be mistaken for a less-than-strong bond with his family members. Prince Philip treasures his role as father, grandfather, and now great-grandfather.

When Matt Smith, who plays Prince Philip in the Netflix series The Crown, ran into Prince William at a polo charity event, the actor asked the royal if he had any tips on playing his grandfather. The Duke of Cambridge’s response is telling: “Just one word – legend.”

The Queen and Prince Philip share eight grandchildren together: Peter Phillips, Zara Tindall, Prince William, Prince Harry, Princess Beatrice, Princess Eugenie, Lady Louise Windsor and James, Viscount Severn.

Prince William is not the only one to publicly reveal his great respect for his grandfather.

“I think Grandpa is incredible,” Princess Eugenie said of Prince Philip in a 2016 documentary, Our Queen at Ninety. “He really is strong and consistent. He’s been there for all these years, and I think he’s the rock, you know, for all of us.”

Prince Philip 2018
"I think he's the rock, you know, for all of us," Princess Eugenie said. Image via Getty.

Tina Brown, who wrote The Dianna Chronicles, said in her book: "A member of the Balmoral staff noted that Prince Philip, who had effectively lost his own mother at the age of 10 when she was committed for three years to an asylum in Switzerland, was brilliantly effective with his grandsons, offering them gruff tenderness and outdoor activities like stalking and hiking to tire them out."

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She also wrote about the role Prince Philip played in Harry and William's life when their mother, Princess Diana, died in 1997.

According to Brown, Prince William did not want to walk in the cortege at his mother's funeral, but with his grandfather's persuasion, changed his mind.

Philip reportedly said to William, "If I walk, will you walk with me?" And so he did.

His loving support for his grandchildren was most recently seen in public when he attended Prince Harry and Meghan Markle's wedding in May, despite undergoing a hip replacement operation only weeks prior.

Prince Philip 2018
Image via Getty.

Earlier this year, Harper's Bazaar spoke to Philip Dampier, a former royal reporter, who said: "He has taught them [his grandchildren] many things from his own experiences, telling them not to worry about the press too much as 'it will be tomorrow’s fish and chip paper."

"Philip has made more than 5,000 speeches in his royal career and he has tips on how to do them. His door is always open if any of his grandchildren want advice on any subject."

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