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Another glorious gaffe as the Duke of Edinburgh remarks 'You didn't design your beard very well, did


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Another glorious gaffe as the Duke of Edinburgh remarks 'You didn't design your beard very well, did you...'



By Christopher Leake and Helen Dowd, Mail on Sunday Reporter

Last updated at 4:10 AM on 23rd August 2009



Prince Philip has never been shy about expressing his opinions on a huge range of subjects – often with cringe-making results.


But now he appears to have put his foot in it again, over his views on goatee beards.


At a recent Buckingham Palace garden party, the gaffe-prone Royal was chatting to a guest and struck up conversation by asking what he did for a living.


article-1208430-00D1993000000578-469_468x396.jpg Royal opinion: The Duke of Edinburgh joked that a designer sporting a goatee had not done such a good job on his own face


The man, one of 8,000 guests hoping to meet the Queen and other members of the Royal Family, replied: ‘I’m a designer, sir.’


The 88-year-old Prince is said to have replied: ‘Well, you didn’t design your beard too well, did you?’


The remark, made at a garden party on July 21, left the guest speechless but his embarrassment didn’t end there.


The Duke of Edinburgh – who wore a beard as a young man – was then overheard saying: ‘You really must try better with your beard.’


A source said last night: ‘When Prince Philip made the comments, nobody could quite believe it.


‘It was almost certainly meant as a joke, but for some reason he must have a thing about goatee beards.


‘The man with the beard was a bit taken aback. I don’t think he was famous, but he’ll certainly remember his day at the Palace.’










Ghastly: Leonardo Di Caprio (left) and Hopeless: Johnny Depp (right)








Good grief: Colin Firth (left) and No Good: Sean Connery (right)



article-1208430-003F549600000258-542_468x470.jpg Is that me? The Duke of Edinburgh in Gambia in 1957


David Dade, spokesman for The British Beard Club, said: ‘Even if you are the Queen’s consort, there’s no excuse for being rude – although I suppose he has a rather grumpy reputation and perhaps he wants to keep it up.


‘You would not comment on a woman’s hairdo in this way – you’d never get away with it.


‘I suppose the goatee is mocked a little because it’s considered a 'fashionable' beard.


‘Men who opt for this style probably do so because they imagine it’s the most facial hair they can get away with, and because they think they can keep it neat with trimming, rather than a full beard that can look unkempt if not cared for.’


According to Allan Peterkin, author of One Thousand Beards: A Cultural History Of Facial Hair, the clipped goatee first became fashionable in the Sixties but the style dates back to the ancient Egyptians.


In the Sixties it was, Peterkin says, ‘a beatnik look sprouted in jazz clubs’, popularised by musicians Dizzy Gillespie and Charlie Parker.


The writer predicts, however, that the style is set to become ‘the equivalent of the middle-aged ponytail’, despite Hollywood actors such as Brad Pitt and Johnny Depp having sported the style of late.


Long-term wearers of the goatee are, however, somewhat less fashionable, and include comedians Bill Bailey and Billy Connolly, who regularly dyes his in bright colours.


article-1208430-003957E500000258-294_468x422.jpg Designer stubble: The Duke of Edinburgh sported a beard during his active service during the war


Welsh singer Tom Jones has made the goatee part of his trademark look for many years.


And Ricky Gervais opted for the style when playing hapless and embarrassing boss David Brent in The Office.


Ironically, the Queen’s physician Dr Timothy Evans sports a goatee. The doctor – who offers a range of alternative herbal, aromatherapy, acupuncture and reflexology treatments to his wealthy private clients – is medical director of the Harbour Club gym at Chelsea, West London, once frequented by Princess Diana.


He also works as an on-set medic on Hollywood movies.


Prince Philip is notorious for his public gaffes and over the years has offered his own unique advice to people all over the world.


On a State visit to China in 1986, he told British students: ‘If you stay here much longer, you’ll all be slitty-eyed.’


As dole queues grew in 1981, he said: ‘Everybody was saying we must have more leisure. Now they are complaining they are unemployed.’


Once, he asked a Kenyan dancer during a State visit: ‘You are a woman, aren’t you?’

On another occasion he asked a student who had been trekking in Papua New Guinea: ‘You managed not to get eaten, then?’


Speaking to a driving instructor in Oban, Scotland, he asked: ‘How do you keep the natives off the booze long enough to get them through the test?’


A Buckingham Palace spokesman said last night: ‘We never comment on private conversations.’


Read more: http://www.dailymail.co.uk/news/article-1208430/Another-glorious-gaffe-Duke-Edinburgh-remarks-You-didnt-design-beard-did-.html#ixzz0OzvyQcQY

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