>> Praying to the son of an ancestral local mountain god, or Prince Philip, as he is more commonly known. This isolated Vanuatu tribe has just heard that the British Royal, husband to Queen Elizabeth, is to retire from public engagements, which he announced last week. It's shocking news, because they pray to the 95 old daily, his story woven into the fabric of their Pacific island life.
A Reuters reporter had to hire a local guide to find it. Villagers are poor, they pray to Philip to help their crops, but say the storms that batter the island aren't within his remit. Local legend long told of the pale skinned son of a mountain god who ventured across the seas looking for a powerful woman to marry.
So Elizabeth II's consort fit the bill nicely. Philip probably became linked to the legend in the 60s, when villagers would have seen portraits of the royal couple in the local colonial offices, anthropologists believe. The story strengthened in 1974, when the islanders received an official visit from the wandering prince and his queen.