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The Guardian view on Prince Philip’s funeral: an era is ending | Editorial

Britain’s monarchy is transitioning from a long and settled reign to one that will be different. It is a proper subject for national debate

Because of the pandemic and its restrictions, the Duke of Edinburgh’s funeral at Windsor will be a less grand event than might once have been expected. Only 30 official mourners will attend. Those who do so will leave their military and naval uniforms at home. The public has been asked to stay away. Television will nevertheless ensure that this private ceremony of farewell will be acted out on the global stage.

As a result, the funeral’s emotional hold over the wider nation will be undiminished. There is a single overriding, deeply shared and understandable reason for this. Most of us have lived under only one British monarch, Elizabeth II. In the days since her husband’s death on 9 April, attention has seamlessly moved from the departed duke to the effect on those who remain. The elderly and widowed Queen, who will be 95 next week, is thus more than ever at the forefront of a respectful national mind.

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