Factbox: British Prince Philip's gaffes

Thu Jun 9, 2011 12:41pm EDT
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(Reuters Life!) - Britain's Prince Philip will turn 90 on Friday. Philip has been known for his acerbic wit but has also caused offence with off-the-cuff remarks

Here are some examples:

-- On a trip to China in the 1980s, he warned British students: "You'll get slitty eyes if you stay too long."

-- In 1993, Philip told a Briton he met in Hungary: "You can't have been here that long -- you haven't got a pot belly."

-- During a visit to Oban in Scotland in 1995 he asked a driving instructor: "How do you keep the natives off the booze long enough to pass the (driving) test?"

-- In 1999, while on a tour of a company near Edinburgh, Scotland, he saw a poorly wired fuse box. "It looks as though it was put in by an Indian," he said.

-- In 2001, Philip told a 13-year-old boy whose ambition was to go into space that he was too fat to be an astronaut.

-- While touring Australia in 2002, the prince asked an Aborigine whether they still threw spears at each other.

-- In 2005, to celebrate Philip's 85th birthday, two British reporters, Phil Dampier and Ashley Walton, compiled "Duke of Hazard: The Wit and Wisdom of Prince Philip." Buckingham Palace was not amused.

-- Asked to pick his favorite faux pas, Dampier chose Kenya's independence ceremony in 1963 when Philip represented Britain. As the Union Jack was about to be hauled down, he turned to Kenyan independence leader Jomo Kenyatta and asked: "Are you sure you want to go through with this?"