The way he saw the world chimed with Jewish values

The JC Leader, 16 April 2021


DX8228 Britain's Prince Philip, HRH The Duke of Edinburgh attends a Service at the Fields Of Remembrance in the grounds of Westminster Abbey. Over 3000 ex-service personnel and their families gather in memory of those who gave their lives in the service of their

April 15, 2021 11:29

It says much about Prince Philip that he will be remembered, above all, as a husband. Had he married anyone else, he would almost certainly have been regarded as a brilliant man of rare intelligence, who had risen to the very top of his chosen field, the Royal Navy. But he willingly sublimated all of that as the longest serving consort in British history. In that context, his contribution to the country was no less important. First, of course, as a rock for the Queen. But also in his public duties. It was in that role that our community had many dealings with him, which are fondly remembered and celebrated in this week’s JC. There was a deep connection with Anglo-Jewry, in part because of his family ancestry but also thanks to a shared outlook. As Zaki Cooper writes, he saw the world in a way that chimed with Jewish values of individual responsibility, enterprise and resilience.

But there was more to it than that. In some ways his life mirrored the Jewish experience. He was at once both proudly British — indeed the ultimate insider, married to the sovereign — and yet also something of an outsider, having had a peripatetic, traumatic upbringing. He could thus relate as an individual to our communal experience. That, perhaps, is why so many of us looked with special fondness to him. And it is just one reason why we pray that his memory is for a blessing.

April 15, 2021 11:29

Want more from the JC?

To continue reading, we just need a few details...

Want more from
the JC?

To continue reading, we just
need a few details...

Get the best news and views from across the Jewish world Get subscriber-only offers from our partners Subscribe to get access to our e-paper and archive