How Many Languages Does Prince Philip Speak?

Learning multiple foreign languages might not be part of the royal family’s strict protocol, but that doesn’t stop certain members from overachieving. The British royal family is chock full of impressive linguists — including Prince William who can speak around five foreign languages — some of which have been speaking multiple languages since childhood.

Case in point: Prince Philip grew up in a family that spoke more than one language and is, therefore, fluent in a few. How many languages does Prince Philip speak? We share the details, plus what foreign languages other members of the royal family speak, ahead.  

How Many Languages Does Prince Philip Speak?

Prince Philip
Prince Philip | Chris Jackson/Getty Images

When it comes to foreign language in the royal family, Prince Philip’s skills are probably the most impressive. Although he doesn’t know as many languages as his son, Prince Philip and grandson, Prince William, the Duke of Edinburgh grew up fluent in three languages. What languages does Prince Philip speak? Find out, below.

English

Despite his connection to the Greek and Danish royal families, Prince Philip didn’t grow up speaking the languages. Instead, he and his family spoke English. In fact, he even lived at Kensington Palace and studied in the United Kingdom as a young boy.

At seven years old, the Duke of Edinburgh moved to the United Kingdom and attended Cheam School. While there, he lived with his maternal grandmother, Victoria Mountbatten at Kensington Palace and his uncle, George Mountbatten at Lynden Manor in Bray, Berkshire.

Prince Philip
Prince Philip | Alastair Grant – WPA Pool/Getty Images

French

In addition to speaking English, Prince Philip also grew up speaking French. Like his wife, Queen Elizabeth, the Duke of Edinburgh is fluent in the language.

German

Prince Philip’s family also spoke German, which is where the duke gets his fluency from. In addition, he studied at Schule Schloss Salem in Germany at 12-years-old.

Royal family foreign languages  

Prince Philip isn’t the only multilingual royal. In fact, many members of the royal family are fluent in French and know a handful of other foreign languages, too. What languages does the royal family speak? Find out, ahead.

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Today, The Queen has released a message ahead of Commonwealth Day on Monday. "Commonwealth Day has a special significance this year as we mark the 70th anniversary of the London Declaration, when nations of the Commonwealth agreed to move forward together as free and equal members. The vision and sense of connection that inspired the signatories has stood the test of time, and the Commonwealth continues to grow, adapting to address contemporary needs. "Today, many millions of people around the world are drawn together because of the collective values shared by the Commonwealth. In April last year, I welcomed the leaders of our 53 nations to Buckingham Palace and Windsor Castle for the Commonwealth Heads of Government Meeting, and we all witnessed how the Commonwealth vision offers hope, and inspires us to find ways of protecting our planet, and our people. "We are able to look to the future with greater confidence and optimism as a result of the links that we share, and thanks to the networks of cooperation and mutual support to which we contribute, and on which we draw. With enduring commitment through times of great change, successive generations have demonstrated that whilst the goodwill for which the Commonwealth is renowned may be intangible, its impact is very real. "We experience this as people of all backgrounds continue to find new ways of expressing through action the value of belonging in a connected Commonwealth. I hope and trust that many more will commit to doing so this Commonwealth Day." PA Images #commonwealth

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French: Prince Philip isn’t the only royal fluent in French. In addition to the Duke of Edinburgh, Queen Elizabeth, and their children, Prince Charles, Princess Anne, Prince Andrew, and Prince Edward all speak the language. On top of that, Prince William and Kate Middleton speak French and Meghan Markle allegedly knows a little, too.  

Spanish: Some of the royal family’s youngest members are already learning their first foreign language. Prince George and Princess Charlotte are allegedly learning Spanish and practice with their nanny, Maria Turrion Borrallo.

Russian: In addition to French and Spanish, Russian is also spoken at Kensington Palace. Prince Michael of Kent and his wife, Princess Michael both speak and understand Russian.

Tagalog: Meghan Markle might know a little Tagalog, the language of the Philippines. While visiting Edinburgh with Prince Harry, the Duchess of Sussex was overheard saying “Salamat Po,” which means “thank you.”

Swahili: Prince William knows a little Swahili, too. The Duke of Cambridge allegedly taught himself the foreign language.

Welsh: As the Prince of Wales, Prince Charles is sometimes required to speak a little Welsh. While he’s not fluent, he does understand and speak enough to get by. Additionally, Prince William also speaks Welsh. His father started him early in hopes that the future Prince of Wales would be fluent by the time Prince Charles becomes king. Prince William’s knowledge of the language is unclear, but some believe he is fluent.

Gaelic: The Prince of Wales and Duke of Cambridge allegedly know a little Gaelic, too. They likely speak the language when in Northern Ireland and Scotland.


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