On this day 74 years ago, Her Majesty the Queen – then Princess Elizabeth – exchanged vows with her beloved fiancé Prince Philip.

The nation listened in to the live broadcast as the smitten royals tied the knot at Westminster Abbey with 2,000 guests in attendance, vowing to 'love and obey until death do us part’.

Sadly, after over seven decades of happy marriage, the Duke of Edinburgh died in April at the age of 99.

Today, on what would have been their 74th wedding anniversary, the Queen will be supported by her nearest and dearest and remembering happier times.

To celebrate their wonderful relationship, we’ve found some rare and much-loved photographs showing their sweetest moments through the years.

Eye to eye

The Queen and Prince Philip shared a passionate love of horses and the pair were constant companions at the Derby and Royal Ascot, where the Duke of Edinburgh Handicap was named after him.

Here, the happy couple were snapped having a candid conversation at the Royal Windsor Horse Show in the grounds of Windsor Castle in 1982.

Her Majesty pays great attention to her husband and gazes thoughtfully into his eyes as he speaks.

Loving look

Four years before her coronation, the Queen enjoyed a freer life as a princess and spent much of her spare time with the future Prince Philip.

In 1949 the Queen was pictured looking adoringly at her husband at their home, Villa Guardamangia, in Malta, where Philip was stationed with the Royal Navy.

The then Princess Elizabeth left Buckingham Palace behind to live with Philip in the pretty townhouse, showing her dedication to their marriage.

It’s said that they spent the most joyful period of their marriage in Malta, when they were able to lead a fairly normal life outside of the royal limelight.

Dancing Queen

Her Majesty has always wowed crowds at official engagements with her poise and perfect dress – and no one was more impressed than Philip.

In 1967, the pair travelled to Malta for a Commonwealth visit and enjoyed a grand ball at the palace in Valletta.

Despite the Queen being crowned so young in 1953, the pair embraced and enjoyed every royal engagement together.

The couple are smiling from ear to ear, hand in hand as they hit the dance floor. The Queen looks completely at ease with Philip by her side, while he looks proud to have his elegant wife by his side.

Become an OK! VIP and see all our exclusives – for free!

Become an OK! VIP and you will unlock access to all of our big exclusives…

Be the first to meet the latest showbiz babies, see the most sought after wedding pictures of the year, or take a guided tour around your favourite star's lavish multi-million pound home – all for free!

Sign up here

Time for tea

Even the happiest couple have their moments during marriage – perhaps the sound of Her Majesty sipping tea in Nauru was too much for the Duke, who looks perplexed in this picture.

It was taken during their tour of the sunny South Pacific Islands in October 1982, at which point the pair had four grown-up children.

The Queen’s nonchalance at Philip’s gaze shows her comfort and ease in his presence – whether she was slurping or not!

True gentleman

Prince Philip was dedicated to Her Majesty, as both his wife and his Queen.

He followed the royal rules, always walking a few paces behind his wife and lending an ear as one of her top advisors.

She came first always, as seen in this sweet image from Malta in 2005.

As rain began to fall at the official opening of the Grand Harbour Marina, Philip whipped out an umbrella to protect the monarch – what a gentleman!

Good sports

The Royal Family have been a regular audience to the annual Braemar Gathering in Scotland – close to the Balmoral Estate.

The famous event features sports like caber toss and tug o’ war and Her Majesty loves it, especially when things go wrong.

During the 2007 proceedings, Her Majesty must’ve spotted a faux pas and alerted her husband to the gaffe.

The pair clearly shared a similar sense of humour and were overjoyed to see each other happy.

Helping hand

Philip first caught the Queen’s eye in the summer of 1939.

Since then the Duke has been a rock to Her Majesty and a helping hand as the longest-serving royal consort in British history.

But Philip took the tough job in his stride, putting aside his career plans to serve his Queen, whether she needed advice, or just a hand to hold.

In 2015, the couple were seen hand in hand leaving a Service of Commemoration for troops stationed in Afghanistan.

The Queen looked uneasy in the London air, but Philip gave his wife a gentle touch to let her know he was there for her.

Funny business

There was never a dull moment on royal engagements when Prince Philip was around.

The cheeky Duke had a quick wit and often made the Queen roll her eyes with his jokes.

During a visit to ZSL Whipsnade Zoo in 2017, the couple were offered the chance to feed Donna the elephant a banana!

Always up for a laugh, Philip played ‘assistant’ and stood with a banana in hand as the Queen said hello to the well-behaved elephant.

Source: Read Full Article