Magazine article The Spectator

The Duke's Spirit

Magazine article The Spectator

The Duke's Spirit

Article excerpt

When the Duke of Edinburgh was released from hospital on Tuesday, the medical director of the British Heart Foundation

gave him some advice. 'It would be sensible to take it easy,' said Professor Peter Weissberg. Such counsel is, of course, relative.

The Duke is perhaps the only 90-year-old who counts chariot racing among his hobbies. He has a packed schedule for 2012, the year

of his wife's Diamond Jubilee. It is a celebration which would be almost unimaginable without him.

The widespread concern over his brief Christmas illness has underlined how cherished the Duke is. For many years, he has been portrayed as a doddering gaffe-machine by sections of the press (usually as an excuse to reprint his jokes).

In fact, his loyal and diligent service as consort helps to explain the extraordinary success of the Queen's reign. …

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