Home > Horror News > Western Horror News > Is Prince Philip An Island God?
Is Prince Philip An Island God?
By: RSS/News FeedsHungZai Team

Britain’s Duke of Edinburgh may be planning a quiet birthday celebration at home this weekend, but there will be feasting and flag-waving in an isolated jungle village in the South Pacific nation of Vanuatu, where he is worshipped as a god.

The Land Cruiser ground up the rough dirt track, pitching and rolling like a boat. The trail was so severely eroded that it was more like a river bed, with miniature canyons gouged out by the monsoon rains.

I had been drawn to this poor excuse for a road by a story so unlikely that it sounded barely credible.

It was one I had wanted to investigate for years.

Legend had it that there was a clutch of villages on the island of Tanna in Vanuatu which – as bizarre as it may seem – worshipped Prince Philip as a god.

How and why they had chosen the Duke of Edinburgh, I had no idea. I fully expected the story to be either false, or wildly exaggerated.

Distant adoration

After an hour’s drive we pulled into a jungle clearing shaded by giant banyan trees.

A short walk led to the village of Yaohnanen, a collection of sagging thatched huts, banana trees and snotty-nosed little kids.

With the help of my driver-cum-interpreter, Lui, I was introduced to the chief of the village. Jack Naiva was a bright-eyed old man of about 80, with grey hair and a faded sarong wrapped around his wiry body.

I felt deeply foolish telling him I had come to his village to ask if he worshipped the Queen’s husband.

I wondered if it was all some sort of elaborate joke.

Jack Naiva, chief of the village, has an official portrait of the Prince

But the look on Chief Jack’s face told me it was not. He dispatched one of the villagers and a few minutes later the man returned from a hut with three framed pictures.

They were all official portraits of the Prince.

The first, in black and white, looked like it was taken in the early 1960s.

The second was dated 1980 and showed the Prince holding a traditional pig-killing club – a present from the islanders.

The most recent was from seven years ago.

They had all been sent from London with the discreet permission of Prince Philip, who is apparently well aware that he is the subject of such distant adoration.

Ancient legend

Chief Jack squatted on the ground as he told me how the Prince Philip cult had come about.

It seems that it emerged some time in the 1960s, when Vanuatu was an Anglo-French colony known as the New Hebrides.

For centuries, perhaps millennia, villagers had believed in an ancient story about the son of a mountain spirit venturing across the seas to look for a powerful woman to marry.

They believed that unlike them, this spirit had pale skin.

Somehow the legend gradually became associated with Prince Philip, who had indeed married a rich and powerful lady.

Villagers would have seen his portrait – and that of the Queen – in government outposts and police stations run by British colonial officials.

Their beliefs were bolstered in 1974, when the Queen and Prince Philip made an official visit to the New Hebrides. Here was their ancestral spirit, resplendent in a white naval officer’s uniform, come back to show off his bride.

“He’s a god, not a man,” the chief told me emphatically, pointing at the portraits.

Response to colonialism

None of the cult followers can read or write.

Prince Philip gave permission for portraits to be sent from London

They told me – somewhat amazingly – that it was only this year that they learnt the date of the Prince’s birthday – 10 June.

As Philip turns 86 and they are planning to mark the occasion with a feast and ceremonial drinking of kava, an intoxicating brew made from the roots of a pepper tree which makes your mouth go numb.

They have even acquired a large Union flag which they are going to run up a bamboo flag pole.

It is easy to see all this as so much South Seas mumbo jumbo.

But that would be a grave mistake, anthropologists told me.

Millennial movements like this were a highly sophisticated response by islanders in the South Pacific to the arrival of colonialism and Christianity.

By combining the fundamentals of their ancient beliefs with new elements gleaned from their contact with the West, they were able to preserve their culture.

There is, of course, a delicious irony in all this.

Prince Philip, after all, is a man who has a reputation for making politically incorrect gaffes, often about foreigners.

He once advised British students not to stay too long in China for fear of becoming “slitty-eyed”.

And he asked a group of stunned aborigines if they still threw spears at each other.

The villagers of Tanna may live a life far removed from the splendour of Buckingham Palace and Balmoral in far away Britain. But they are as firm in their beliefs as Prince Philip is in his.

I suspect that if they were ever to meet, they would get along rather well.

Follow HungZai across our social channels, on Facebook, Twitter and Telegram.
LATEST STORIES IN HORROR LEVELS
Search And Rescue Officer

Haunted Punggol Flat

Gong Tao In Batu Pahat

Diving Spooky Incidents

The Opera Song

Tekong Kampung Unum

Tomb Mystery At MacRitchie Reservoir

A Wrong Ritual At A Wrong Time

My Haunting Incidents

Fisher’S Ghost

Haunted Apartment

Tekong Ferry Jetty Toilet

Kuman Thong

Sembawang Naval Base Incident

Krabi Diving Incident

SPF Spooks

The Good Visitor

7 Nights

Ahmad Ibrahim Secondary Lab

Negeri Sembilan Kampong

Possession At Funeral

The Missing Mahjong Tiles

Third Eye

Highway In Nantou

Kampong Dog Barking

Rented Flat In Tekka

Diving Adventures

Sharing Some Incidents

Malaysia Road Trip

Slamming Door

The Thomson Park

The Altar

The Hanging Chicken

The Spooky Lift

Sentosa Museum Incident

Haw Par Villa

Tekong Camp 1

Hide And Seek

Spooky Encounters

Prowling Incident

My Haunted Old House

MBS Carpark

The Spooky Mountain Adventure

MSCP Woes

House Hunting

The Old Lady

My Stories

Haunted Train Track

Hitting A Ghost

World War II Ghosts

The Third Eye

Ting Ting Ting Sound

Red House Visit

Phuket Hotel Dirty

Humming Sound

Dragging Sound

The Missing Customer

School Of Signals

Girl At Tengah Airbase

The White Lady

The Haunted Stagmont Camp

Office at 3:00 am

Main Convent Ipoh

Spooky Lift

The Cat

Back For The Last Time

Pontianak

Day Light

Clementi Town Secondary

Jalan Bahtera

Flying Bottle Cap

The Curse In My Family

Third Eye Charm

Jean Pereira

Haunted School In Changi

Hello

My Fearless Grandpa

An Unexpected Guest

Did Not Expect

Spooky Incident In Toilet

MORE STORIES
FIND US ON TELEGRAM
FEEDBACK
Found any WEBSITE ERRORS?
Let us know!
LATEST STORIES
°Possession At Funeral
°Search And Rescue Officer
°My Haunted Old House
°The Missing Mahjong Tiles
°MBS Carpark
°Third Eye
°Highway In Nantou
°Kampong Dog Barking
°The Spooky Mountain Adventure
°Haunted Punggol Flat
MORE STORIES | SUBMIT STORIES
LATEST NEWS
°A Spooky Tale And Icy Heroics
°‘Betaal’ Casting Director Recalls Spooky Experience During Audition
°Japan Haunted House Ghosts Told To Keep Distance
°A Teacher Is Haunted By Specters Of ‘What If?’
°Spooky moment ‘ghost uses his old wheelchair’ at hospital in Thailand
°The mystery of screaming school girls in Malaysia
°Five Scientific Explanations for Spooky Sensations
°I Want to Quarantine With a Ghost
°People stuck in haunted homes during quarantine report rise in ‘spooky’ happenings
°The Spooky Tale Of The A3 ‘Ghost Crash’ And A Mysterious Discovery
MORE NEWS
TOP 10 STORIES
°Possession At Funeral
°Search And Rescue Officer
°My Haunted Old House
°The Missing Mahjong Tiles
°MBS Carpark
°Third Eye
°Highway In Nantou
°Kampong Dog Barking
°The Spooky Mountain Adventure
°Haunted Punggol Flat
MORE TOP STORIES
TOP 10 NEWS
°A Spooky Tale And Icy Heroics
°‘Betaal’ Casting Director Recalls Spooky Experience During Audition
°Japan Haunted House Ghosts Told To Keep Distance
°A Teacher Is Haunted By Specters Of ‘What If?’
°Spooky moment ‘ghost uses his old wheelchair’ at hospital in Thailand
°The mystery of screaming school girls in Malaysia
°Five Scientific Explanations for Spooky Sensations
°I Want to Quarantine With a Ghost
°People stuck in haunted homes during quarantine report rise in ‘spooky’ happenings
°The Spooky Tale Of The A3 ‘Ghost Crash’ And A Mysterious Discovery
MORE TOP NEWS
FIND US ON FACEBOOK
RECRUITMENT
WE WANT YOU!
We are looking for passionate people to be part of the HUNGZAI Correspondent Team. If you think you have what it takes,
CLICK HERE NOW!
Story Categories
A Horror Levels
Mild
Nightmare
Scary
Spooky
Articles
International Files
Singapore Files
Cat
Army
Beach
Building
Camp
Cemetery
Chalet
Cinema
Festival
HDB
Hospital
Hotel
Kampong
Office
Pocong
Pontianak
School
Spiritual
Strange Incident
Toilet
Countries
Australia
Brunei
Canada
China
Beijing
Qinghai
Xiamen
Hong Kong
India
Bangalore
Delhi
Gujarat
Hyderabad
Kurseong
Punjab
Indonesia
Bali
Japan
Korea
Malaysia
Cameron
Genting
Johor
Kedah
Kelantan
Kuala Lumpur
Langkawi
Malacca
Mersing
Mount Ophir
Muar
Negri Sembilan
Pahang
Penang
Perak
Perlis
Sabah
Sarawak
Selangor
Terengganu
Tioman
Philippines
Cebu
Luzon
Manila
Olongapo
Tarlac
Taiwan
Thailand
Bangkok
Chiang Mai
Hattyai
Krabi
Pattaya
Phuket
United Kingdom
United States
Vietnam
Folklore
Eastern Folklore
Filipino
Japanese
Local Folklore
Chinese
Indian
Malay
Western Folklore
American
Mexican
Haunted Places
East Coast Beach
Hill View Mansion
Old Changi Hospital
Red House
HungZai News
News
Asian Horror News
Local Horror News
Western Horror News
Photos
Singapore
Amoy Quee
Ang Mo Kio
Bedok
Bishan
Bugis
Bukit Batok
Bukit Gombak
Bukit Merah
Bukit Panjang
Bukit Timah
Chai Chee
Changi
Choa Chu Kang
City Hall
Clementi
East Coast
Eunos
Geylang
Hill View
Hougang
Jalan Bahtera
Joo Chiat
Jurong
Kallang
Kampong Glam
Katong
Kembangan
Kranji
Labrador Park
Lim Chu Kang
Mandai
Orchard
Pasir Panjang
Pasir Ris
Potong Pasir
Pulau Hantu
Pulau Sudong
Pulau Tekong
Pulau Ubin
Punggol
Queenstown
Red Hill
Seletar
Sembawang
Sengkang
Sentosa
Serangoon
Simei
St John Island
Tampines
Tanglin Halt
Tanjong Pagar
Tekka
Telok Blangah
Thomson
Toa Payoh
Tuas
Woodlands
Yishun
Uncategorized
Stories By Country
A Horror Levels
Articles
Cat
Countries
Folklore
Haunted Places
HungZai News
News
Photos
Singapore
Uncategorized
About Us | Contact | Privacy Policy @ Hungzai.com 2020