Queen Elizabeth II and Prince Philip had a love story for the ages.
They were married for nearly 74 years before Philip's death in 2021, and the world got a front row seat to all of it: their blossoming romance, growing family and final years. The two found comfort in one another during their seven decades as husband and wife, so much so that the queen called Philip her "strength and stay" at their golden wedding anniversary in 1997.
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Now, as the world remembers and honors the queen following her death on Sept. 8, 2022, let's take a look back at the couple's decades-long romance.
1939: Philip and Elizabeth first meet
Elizabeth was just 13 in 1939 when, on a family trip, she spotted Philip, an 18-year-old Greek and Danish prince.
"She fell desperately, desperately head-over-heels in love with him at first sight," British historian Andrew Roberts told TODAY.
Philip was about to enlist in the Royal Navy, and World War II ended up stalling their in-person courtship. But their romance flourished all the same. Throughout Philip's service, the couple courted each other through letters. "It was a correspondence love affair, really. They wrote letters to one another," Roberts said.
And when the prince returned, he asked King George VI for his daughter's hand in marriage.
1947: Philip and Elizabeth wed at Westminster Abbey
Elizabeth, then 21, married Philip on Nov. 20, 1947. Their wedding, which took place at Westminster Abbey, was broadcast on the radio around the world. As the newest member of the British royal family, Philip also took on a new title: the Duke of Edinburgh.
The newlyweds spent the first years of their marriage in Malta, where Philip was stationed as a naval officer, and Elizabeth lived the life of a naval officer's wife.
1949: Philip and Elizabeth welcome their first child, Charles
A year into their marriage, the couple welcomed their first child, a son named Charles, on Nov. 14, 1948. Charles, the Prince of Wales, grew up to wed Princess Diana in 1981 and got divorced in 1996. He would later marry Camilla, Duchess of Cornwall, in 2005.
1950: Philip and Elizabeth welcome a daughter, Anne
On Aug. 15, 1950, Elizabeth and Philip welcomed their second child, a daughter named Anne. The Princess Royal married Mark Phillips in 1973 and got divorced in 1992. She remarried in 1992 when she wed Timothy Laurence.
1953: Elizabeth becomes queen with Philip by her side
Elizabeth and Philip returned to England when King George VI died suddenly on Feb. 6, 1952. The princess became the new monarch the following year during her coronation on June 2, 1953.
Philip gave up his career to support his wife and kneeled before her after she was crowed queen of England.
"This was something that was revolutionary, frankly," Roberts told TODAY. "He was a man who was a highly competitive person and for the whole of the rest of (his) life, he's got to stand two or three paces behind the most famous woman in the world."
1960: Philip and Elizabeth welcome another son, Andrew
Prince Andrew, the Duke of York, was born Feb. 19, 1960, and became Elizabeth and Philip's third child. In 1986, he married Sarah, Duchess of York — formerly Sarah Ferguson, who was famously known as "Fergie." The couple divorced in 1996.
1964: Philip and Elizabeth have their final child, Edward
On March 10, 1964, Elizabeth and Philip's fourth child, Prince Edward, arrived. The Earl of Wessex wed his wife, Sophie, Countess of Wessex, in 1999, and the couple is still together today.
1972: Philip and Elizabeth mark 25 years married
In 1972, Philip and Elizabeth marked a special occasion: their 25th wedding anniversary. Over the decades, they danced together, met heads of state, hosted countless garden parties and enjoyed their shared love for sports.
1977: Philip and Elizabeth become grandparents
Princess Anne was the first of Elizabeth and Philip's children to make them grandparents. In 1977, she welcomed her first child, a son named Peter. Four years later in 1981, she had a daughter named Zara. In 1982, Prince Charles welcomed his first child, Prince William, followed by another son, Prince Harry, in 1984.
Prince Andrew's first daughter, Princess Beatrice, arrived in 1988 and her sister, Princess Eugenie, was born in 1990. Elizabeth and Philip's youngest son, Prince Edward, also has two children: Lady Louise Windsor, born in 2003, and James, Viscount Severn, born in 2007.
1997: Philip and Elizabeth mourn the death of Princess Diana
A year after her divorce from Prince Charles, Princess Diana died in a car crash in Paris while her driver was fleeing the paparazzi. Both Philip and Elizabeth paid tribute to the late princess, and the duke walked with his grandsons William and Harry during the funeral procession to support them.
1997: Philip and Elizabeth mark 50 years married
The year 1997 marked 50 years of marriage for Elizabeth and Philip. On their golden anniversary, the queen gave a speech and thanked her husband for standing by her side. "He is someone who doesn't take easily to compliments. But he has quite simply been my strength and stay all these years," she said.
Like all couples, Elizabeth and Philip had a relationship filled with joy and some rough patches, too. In one speech, Philip spoke out about the key to keeping their bond strong.
“Tolerance is the one central ingredient of any happy marriage — it may be not so important when things are going well but it is absolutely vital when things get difficult," he said.
"You can take it from me, the queen has the quality of tolerance in abundance," he added, prompting laughs from the crowd.
2020: Philip and Elizabeth mark 73 years married
In 2020, the royal couple celebrated 73 years of marriage and marked the occasion by posing for a new portrait. In the sweet snapshot, seen above, Philip and Elizabeth look at an anniversary card their great-grandchildren Prince George, Princess Charlotte and Prince Louis made for them.
2010-2021: Philip and Elizabeth welcome great-grandchildren
Over the years, Philip and Elizabeth welcomed many great-grandchildren as their family grew. Peter Phillips, the couple's oldest grandchild, has daughters Savannah, born in 2010, and Isla, born in 2012. His sister, Zara Tindall, has three children: Mia, born in 2014; Lena, born in 2018; and Lucas, born in 2021.
Princess Eugenie has one child, a son named August, born in 2021. Her sister, Princess Beatrice, has a daughter named Sienna, also born in 2021.
The most famous great-grandchildren in the family may be Prince William and the former Kate Middleton's kids — Prince George, born in 2013; Princess Charlotte, born in 2015; and Prince Louis, born in 2018 — as well as Prince Harry and the former Meghan Markle's children, Archie, born in 2019; and Lilibet, born in 2021.
Philip never got the chance to meet his two youngest grandchildren, Sienna and Lilibet, since they were born after he died.
2021: Philip dies
On April 9, 2021, the royal family announced that Prince Philip had died at the age of 99, and tributes for the longest-serving consort in British history quickly poured in. The family kept the funeral small to align with COVID-19 restrictions and celebrated his life on April 17, 2021.
2022: Elizabeth dies
On Sept. 8, 2022, the palace confirmed that the queen "died peacefully at Balmoral." She ruled for over 70 years, making her the second-longest reigning monarch in world history.