It turns out Queen Elizabeth II is a bit of a romantic.
A letter she wrote in 1947 as a 21-year-old reveals how Her Majesty fell in love with the Duke of Edinburgh.
“The first time I remember meeting Philip was at the Royal Naval College, Dartmouth, in July 1939, just before the war. (We may have met before at the coronation or the Duchess of Kent’s wedding, but I don’t remember.)” the Queen writes.
Not exactly poetry, and we wonder what Prince Philip thinks of being so ‘forgettable’ in those early days.
“I was 13 years of age and he was 18 and a cadet just due to leave,” the letter reads.
Prince Philip had joined the Navy at the start of the war and the Queen reveals she only saw him very occasionally — “I supposed about twice in three years”.
The two-page letter also reveals details of the engagement and wedding rings, highlighting the Duke’s flair for jewellery design.
“The engagement ring was made by Antrobus. Princess Alice took it in as Philip obviously couldn’t but he designed the ring,” the Queen writes.
“I don’t know the history of the stone, except that it is a very fine old cutting. It was given to me not long before the engagement was announced.”
The Queen writes of her fondness for dancing with Prince Philip at Ciro’s and Quaglino’s, two London nightclubs of the time.
She says that before Prince Philip went for a two-year job to the R.N. Petty Officers School at Corsham they had hardly known each other.
The letter was written on white paper adorned with the royal crest, and was signed ‘Elizabeth’.
It was recently sold for 14,000 British pounds (AU$20,180) to a private collector.