Prince Philip's Funeral Included A Subtle Nod To Princess Diana

Prince Philip's funeral was held today, April 17, 2021. The funeral included many traditions, but also a few special moments that fans of the royal family likely noticed.

According to Kinsey Schofield, founder of, a website about the British royal family, a sweet surprise during the somber ceremony was the inclusion of a traditional British folk song, "Rhosymedre" by Vaughan Williams. As Schofield notes, "This song was also played at Princess Diana's funeral. This song was also played during both Prince William and Prince Harry's wedding. While unlikely a tribute to Princess Diana, it is a gentle reminder of the Queen of Hearts who hopefully met the Duke at the gates of Heaven and who hopefully has her arms wrapped around both of her boys today." 

Prince Philip and Princess Diana were quite close for years, and The Sun reports that the Duke of Edinburgh often sat next to Diana at family events at Balmoral. 

"Philip recognised Diana as an awkward young girl, who was obviously overawed by the situation. He frequently sat next to her at formal dinners in the candlelit dining room at Balmoral, and gave her a conspiratorial wink when the Queen's piper appeared swirling around the table playing his bagpipes."

Prince Philip tried to help Diana with her marriage to Charles

Prince Philip was also the person Princess Diana turned to when it became clear her marriage to Prince Charles was in trouble. Metro reports that the pair exchanged letters between June 1992 until Diana and Charles ultimately separated in December of the same year.

Prince Philip offered his help and advice in one letter, writing, "I can only repeat what I have said before. If invited, I will do my utmost to help you and Charles to the best of my ability." He quickly hastened to add that his advice shouldn't be taken as veritable fact, tacking on, "But I am quite ready to concede that I have no talent as a marriage counsellor!" 

His letter appeared to be exactly what Princess Diana needed to hear. She wrote back, "Dearest Pa, I was particularly touched by your most recent letter, which proved to me, if I did not already know it, that you really do care. You are very modest about your marriage guidance skills, and I disagree with you!"

Prince Philip was concerned for Princess Diana's sons

Per, the meaning of Rhosymedre is "lovely" in the Welsh language. The song is "perfect for worship and concert settings," so it was a fitting tune for such a somber occasion. Whether or not the inclusion of the song at Prince Philip's funeral was an intentional nod to Princess Diana, there's no denying that after her death, he played a role in comforting her sons, Prince William and Prince Harry.

Unsurprisingly, planning for royal funerals is meticulous, with no detail overlooked. Even though Diana had been divorced from Prince Charles at the time of her death, she was still a beloved princess to many. According to Town & Country, "In a country famed for its stiff upper lip, people wept openly in the streets, keening the loss of a beautiful young mother ... Her funeral, like her wedding, was viewed around the world."

And just as William and Harry walked in the funeral procession for their grandfather, they were accompanied by Prince Philip in 1997, walking somberly in their mother's procession. However, getting to that point wasn't without issues. There was a lot of discussion surrounding how to include the boys, and Philip stepped in with a proposal for his grandsons.

Prince Philip supported the young princes

As Evening Standard reported, the Duke of Edinburgh was very concerned for Prince William and Prince Harry during that difficult time. Anji Hunter, a former government relations director, recalled a conference call, and Prince Philip's input. "We were all talking about how William and Harry should be involved and suddenly came Prince Philip's voice," she recalled. "We hadn't heard from him before, but he was really anguished. 'It's about the boys,' he cried, 'They've lost their mother.'"

The night before the funeral, the boys' grandfather let them know how much he supported them. "Philip is said to have turned to William and Harry and told them: 'I'll walk if you walk.'" In addition to Prince Philip, Prince Charles and Princess Diana's younger brother, Earl Spencer, also joined the young princes in the funeral procession. Although Diana has been gone for over 20 years, her presence is still keenly felt among her family, friends, and millions around the world.