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[英伦广角] 【整理】2013-06-15 91岁菲利普亲王顺利完成腹部探查手术

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The Queen was supposed to be part of a double act when she arrived to open new BBC headquarters, but with the Duke of Edinburgh in hospital, she performed her duties as a soloist. There was never any possibilty of cancelling. This is the day job for the Queen, and the firm, as it's known, doesn't close down just because a key executive is sick.

It was hard to tell whether Prince's health was playing on her mind as Her Majesty pressed the BBC flash. There was live performance by the script, didn't appear to do much to lighten her mood, if it was.

The Queen passed up a chance to give an update on her husband's condition in her formal opening announcement, but instead only mentioned the Duke of Edinburgh's BBC visit 60 years ago.

I came again with the Duke of Edinburgh just before the coronation in 1953. I was struck then as I am now by the sheer pace of change, which has transformed whole industry over the past 60 years.

But veteran interrogator John Humphrys couldn't resist asking the question on everyone's lips.

I wanted to ask you: how's the Duke? Do you know how he is?
I have no idea. I mean, he's just gone in.
He looked in awfully good form yesterday.
Yes, he did, I suppose.

Tonight, we are told the Duke has had his exploratory opreation and the results will be analyzed. He's said to be progressing satisfactorily, but it doesn't sound that the Prince Philips' two-week stay in hospital is likely to be cut short. So the man who for more than 60 years has been the Queen's side as her consort won't be for some time yet, and that means he'll miss a string of events.

On Sunday the Duke was meant to attend a Lords Taveners' cricket march in Windstor. He'll also spend his 92nd birthday in hospital on Monday. Next Thursday, he'll miss a big military showpiece, Beating Retreat on Horse Guards Parade. The Queen will have to go on her own. And on Saturday the 15th, the Duke will miss all the pomp of Trooping the Colour to celebrate the Queen's official birthday. But royal author Ingrid Sewed says for the Queen duty always comes before everything else, including bed-ridden husband.

One of their golden rules is if you can possibly avoid it, never cancel an engagement, and the Queen and Prince Philips do most of their engagements together nowadays, and if he can't be there because of ill health, there is no way that the Queen would dream of dropping out herself. She knows how important it is not to let people down.

And that means for the next few weeks at least, as that the BBC, the crowds and the camera phones will all be focusing soly on the Queen.

David Bowden. Sky News.
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