Prince Philip continues to fascinate the world with his quirkiness. The Duke of Edinburgh is well known for one-liners, but it seems as if he expects his guests to be able to hold their own around the dinner table.
Queen Elizabeth and her consort have attended thousands of dinner parties over the years. They have hosted state banquets and have dined at some of the finest restaurants in the world. But when it comes to their own private dinners, it seems as if Prince Philip has a golden rule when it comes to his guests.
According to The Mirror, Prince Philip has an unusual request when it comes to sharing a meal with him. Royal author, Brian Hoey, writes that “When Prince Philip gives a private dinner, he likes to decide the subject for conversation.”
The Duke of Edinburgh allegedly steers the conversation and expects everyone to be conversant about the topic at hand. From the man who famously once said, “Bugger the table plan, give me my dinner!” per Woman and Home, it seems as if the duke is very particular about dinner conversation.
In Not In Front Of The Corgis, Hoey reports that at least one guest was unaware about the duke’s unwritten rule. She found herself in a predicament as she was unable to contribute to the dinner talk in a meaningful way.
“One lady was dismayed to find she was expected to contribute on the subject of ‘deciduous trees,’ about which she knew absolutely nothing.”
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Hoey then went on to explain that Prince Philip really expects his guest to be able to converse intelligently on the given topic at hand. However, one should never outshine the host. The writer went on to explain that “If guests are not quite as knowledgeable as they should be, the Prince can become very touchy – but if someone is more expert than him it can just as easily ruin the occasion.”
So, the rule seems to be that one should know enough about a particular topic to keep the conversation going. But a guest at a royal dinner party should always defer to the ruling monarch’s consort in case you hurt his feelings.
Of course, this begs the question of how a guest would be able to prepare for a private dinner party. Hoey writes that “Apparently the secret is to contact his office beforehand and find out his pet topics of the moment and learn just enough to be able to contribute intelligently, but not to upstage the host.”
It appears as if the 97-year-old insists on holding his company to an elevated standard.