Prince Philip Is Retiring from Public Duties, Buckingham Palace Announces

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Prince Philip, aka the Duke of Edinburgh, is making a major life change.

The 95-year-old royal will retire from official duties, and he has his wife Queen Elizabeth II's blessing.

"His Royal Highness The Duke of Edinburgh has decided that he will no longer carry out public engagements from the autumn of this year. In taking this decision, The Duke has the full support of The Queen," the palace said in a statement released Thursday.

Annie Leibovitz/Buckingham Palace/AP

The prince is slated to finish out events that have already been scheduled through August but won't officially accept new ones. However, "he may still choose to attend certain public events from time to time," the palace noted.

https://twitter.com/RoyalFamily/status/860058046592147456

"The Duke of Edinburgh is Patron, President, or a member of over 780 organizations, with which he will continue to be associated, although he will no longer play an active role by attending engagements," the statement continued.

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The announcement comes on the heels of a flurry of online speculation regarding the prince's well-being that began Wednesday night (early Thursday morning London time) after 91-year-old Queen Elizabeth called an "emergency meeting" for royal staff.

As for the queen's future plans for herself? "Her Majesty will continue to carry out a full program of official engagements with the support of members of the Royal Family," the palace said.

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