Gun Salutes Across U.K. To Honor Prince Philip Following His Death at 99

The U.K. will honor the late Prince Philip, the Duke of Edinburgh with a series of gun salutes throughout the country on Saturday in a traditional show of respect for a senior member of the royal family.

The salutes will involve batteries—usually cannons or other artillery—firing 41 rounds at a rate of one round every minute from 12 p.m. BST (7 a.m. EST). Salutes will take place in London, Edinburgh, Cardiff, Belfast and other cities, according to BBC News.

There will also be a gun salute on the British territory of Gibraltar and some Royal Navy vessels currently at sea will participate, including HMS Montrose and HMS Diamond. The late prince was a naval officer and served as Lord High Admiral, the ceremonial head of the navy.

Gun salutes are a traditional way to celebrate major royal events and to honor the passing of royals and other public figures.

The King's Troop Royal Horse Artillery will ride out from their base Napier Lines, Woolwich Barracks in London to the Parade Ground to give their salute, according to ITV.

This will involve 71 horses, 36 of which will be pulling six 13-pounder field guns that date from the First World War.

Those guns have a special significance for Queen Elizabeth II and her late husband as they were fired for their wedding in 1947 and again for the Queen's coronation in 1953. The couple were married for 73 years at the time of the 99-year-old prince's death on Friday.

Gun salutes date back to at least the 18th century at a time when field artillery became more common on European battlefields. Many countries, including the U.S., perform salutes to honor their heads of state and other dignitaries.

Sir Winston Churchill, prime minister and leader during the Second war War, was honored with gun salutes upon his death in 1965. Queen Victoria, the first British monarch of the 20th century, also received the honor when she died in 1901.

Victoria, a direct ancestor of Elizabeth II, was the country's longest-reigning monarch until the present queen surpassed her in 2015.

A series of 41-gun salutes marked the passing of the Queen Mother, Queen Elizabeth, in 2002. She was the last woman to serve as queen consort and died at the age of 102.

Other salutes, often featuring 21 guns or more depending on the occasion and location of the firing, generally mark other royal occasions, such as the Queen's birthday, the birth of children, and the anniversary of the Queen's accession to the throne.

A 2018 Gun Salute Honors Elizabeth II
Members of the King's Troop Horse Artillery fire a 41 Gun Salute in Green Park on February 6, 2018 in London, England. The salute marks the 66th Anniversary of Queen Elizabeth II accession to the throne. Gun salutes will honor the late Prince Philip on Saturday. Dan Kitwood/Getty Images