Prince Philip and the Vampire Legend

I’ve seen this photo of Prince Phillip, 99, floating around the internet. He has purple, splotchy lesions on all his exposed skin, his orbits have recessed, and there are purple bags under his eyes. The rest of his facial skin appears contracted.

The viewer has a semi-conscious identification of this photo with the legend of the vampire. While we may experience guilty pleasure in mocking the cadaverous powerful, the reason for this identification is more direct. The legend of the vampire may be based on sufferers of porphyria, who develop these characteristic skin findings and light sensitivity. They would blister with sun exposure, develop non-healing ulcers, and have atrophied skin on sun exposed areas.

Max Schreck, Nosferatu, 1922
Porphyria sufferer, from Pinterest.

The Windsor’s are known carriers of porphyria. It was reportedly the cause of King George III’s mania and delusions, consistent with the behavioral patterns overlapping with vampires – awake for days and then dead, like bipolar patients.

So, it’s reasonable to conjecture that Philip could suffer from porphyria. He and QE II are third cousins. The inherited form of porphyria is X linked recessive, meaning that women transmit the disorder without suffering from it, and men suffer from it. Any family with consanguinity (interbreeding) will have a higher rate of inherited disorders.

Also, they are related to Vlad the Impaler.

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