The city-state of Monaco is surrounded by French territory on a bay of
the Ligurian Sea.
Due to the mild temperatures, the vegetation of the small country on the Côte
d'Azur is Mediterranean. Due to the very limited area, the land grows in height
and depth. Therefore, the state has the highest population density in the world
with 16,410 residents per km².
The state of Monaco and the city are more or less identical. Since 1965 the area
of the city-state has increased by around 25% due to landfills.
Monaco is not only known to many as a tax haven, but also for its magnificent
casino in Monte Carlo, a district of Monaco that Charles Garnier built between
1878 and 1881. In addition, the third largest sporting event in the world, the Formula
One Grand Prix of Monte Carlo, takes place in the center of the
city every year in May. Monte Carlo is a district of Monaco, like Monaco Ville,
where the Prince's Palace and numerous administrative buildings are located.
To get in the mood for a trip to Monaco, you should take a look at Alfred
Hitchcock's masterpiece "Above the Roofs of Nice".
The film was not shot exclusively in Monaco, but it starred the actress Grace
Kelly, who later on the side of the then reigning Prince
Rainier III. (1923-2005) became Princess Gracia Patricia. The
church wedding took place on April 19, 1956 in St. Nicholas Cathedral in
Monaco. Gracia Patricia unfortunately died on September 14, 1982 in Monaco as a
result of a car accident. Her husband, Prince Rainier III. died on April 6,
On July 1, 2011, his son and successor - Prince Albert II - married the one
from South Africa former competitive swimmer Charlene Wittwock - and on July 2nd
There is a small industry in the principality that employs around 3,000 people -
chocolate and perfume companies.
|Name of the country
||Principality of Monaco/Principauté de Monaco
|Form of government
||constitutional hereditary monarchy
|Head of state
||Prince Albert II (since March 31, 2005)
his father died shortly afterwards on April 6
|| Enclave on the Ligurian Sea, part of the Mediterranean in the
middle of French territory
||Principauté Monaco, ma patrie
||approx. 35,500 (Credit:
||Together with Singapore, Monaco has
the highest population density in the world
15% Monegasque and
||French (official language), Monegasque
as well as English, Italian
||2.02 km² (= 202 ha)
together with the
Fontvieille district gained through landfill
|International license plate
||Euro (1 € = 100 cents)
|Difference to CET
|International phone code
|Internet Top Level Domain (TLD)
|Mains voltage, frequency
||220 volts and 50 hertz
History of Monaco
Until around the year 1000
The oldest traces of human settlement in what is now Monaco are around
300,000 years old.
Abbreviationfinder website, around 2,000 BC, the area was settled by the Ligurians, later by the Greeks and
Phoenicians. In the first century BC it fell to the Romans.
From the fifth century the Mediterranean coast was ravaged by barbaric
peoples, pirates and Saracens. In 975 the Saracens were expelled and Provence
was part of the Holy Roman Empire.
Towards the end of the 12th century, the emperors Friedrich I. Barbarossa
(1122-1190) and Heinrich VI. (1165-1197) the coastal region under the rule of
Established until the 17th century
On June 10, 1215, Fulco del Casello, the head of an
influential Genoese family, laid the foundation stone for a border fortress on
the rock of Monaco - exactly where the princely palace stands today.
Genoa was one of the leading powers of the Mediterranean at the
time. In the course of the Genoese Civil War, the Guelphs (Welfen), and
with them the Grimaldi family, were driven out of the city by the Ghibellines
(Staufer) in 1296.
Disguised as Franciscan monks, the Grimaldis invaded the fortress of Monaco,
which was ruled by the Ghibellines and built by the Genoese, on January 8,
1297. By surprise attack they captured the fortress with their swords hidden
under their robes. This statue of Francois Grimaldi (Francesco Grimaldi), known
as Malizia (the clever one), is located near the Prince's Palace. He has hidden
a sword under his robe. However, they lost their rule in 1301 again,
Charles I Grimaldi (1267-1315) conquered Monaco back in 1331. He was the first
to hold the title of Lord (Seigneur) of Monaco.
In 1357, however, Monaco fell back to Genoa, and Charles I lost his life during
the siege. Charles's grandsons Ambrosius, Anton and Johann succeeded in 1419 in
conquering Monaco again.
From 1457 Monaco was ruled by Lambert Grimaldi (1420-1498). As an excellent
diplomat, he became steward and advisor to the French King Charles VIII
(1470-1498) and achieved recognition of Monegasque independence in 1489 through
his clever diplomacy.
In 1525, Augustine I Grimaldi (1482-1532) and Emperor Charles V (1500-1558)
signed the Treaty of Burgos and Tordesillas, which placed Monaco under Spanish
protection and which lasted until 1641.
In 1612 Honoré II (1597-1662) assumed the title of Prince and Lord of Monaco.
In 1641 he concluded with the French King Louis XIII. () the Treaty of
Péronne, in which France again became the protective power of Monaco and
recognized its independence. Honoré II also converted the old castle on the rock
in Monaco into a representative palace and with a collection of over 700
paintings laid the foundation for the famous art collection of the Princes of
After Honoré II's death, his grandson Louis I (1642-1701) - his son had
previously died in an accident - took power in the principality.
In the 18th and 19th centuries
Louis I was succeeded by his son Antoine I (1661-1731) on the throne.
After the death of Antoine I, the male line of the Grimaldis became extinct. His
eldest daughter, Louise-Hippolyte (1697 - 1731) was the first woman to ascend
the Monegasque throne in 1731, but died in the same year.
Her husband then ascended the Monegasque throne as Jacques I (1689-1751).
But since he was not recognized by the population as a local, he renounced on
November 7, 1733 in favor of his son Honoré III. (1720-1795) volunteered to the
In 1789, the French Revolution expropriated the Grimaldi family from their
French feudal holdings. Monaco was annexed to France under the name of Fort
Honoré III. died in prison in Paris in 1795. The wife of his second
son Josef was guillotined in 1794 at the age of 27. After Napoleon's deposition,
the first treaty of Paris in 1814 restored the independence of the
principality. In 1817 it was placed under the protection of the Kingdom of
Sardinia, which incidentally resulted in high indebtedness for the principality.
In 1861 Charles III signed (1818-1889) - together with the French Emperor
Napoleon III. (1808-1873) - a treaty with which Monaco finally ceded the two
cities of Menton and Roquebrune to France. With this the principality lost over
80% of its national territory. For the first time, however, the principality was
completely sovereign and no longer tied to a protective power. Due to the
customs union with France there was no longer a customs border, which
significantly increased trade. The economic boom of the principality under
Charles III. was like an economic miracle.
Charles III had a casino built from 1863, which was subsequently a worldwide
success thanks to François Blanc, the "Magician of
The first luxury hotels were built on the rock of Spelugues. The principality
was increasingly visited by well-heeled foreign tourists.
The area around the casino was officially named after Charles III in
1866. named in Monte Carlo. The state gained so much income from the casino that
direct taxation was abolished as early as 1869.
20th century until today
Albert I (1848-1922), the son of Charles III, gave the country its first
constitution in 1911. In 1919 another protection treaty was signed with France.
As early as the 1930s, a commercial bank under the influence of the "Third
Reich" functioned in Monaco as a foreign exchange procurement office. The
principality was so important for Hitler as an externally independent, neutral
state, since in this way foreign currency could be earned and strategic goods
could be bought even during the war. Some German companies and banks with
international connections were involved. On July 3, 1941, a law was passed to
register the Jews. During World War II, German troops occupied Monaco from
September 8, 1943 to September 3, 1944.
Prince Rainier III. (1923-2005) took the throne in 1949. In 1956 he married
the American film actress Grace Kelly (1929-1982), who took the name Gracia
Patricia as a princess. In 1962 the current constitution came into force. In
1982 Gracia Patricia died as a result of a traffic accident. In 1993 Monaco
joined the United Nations. Rainier III died on April 6, 2005. and his son Albert
II (born 1958) took over the line of succession. On July 1, 2011, he married the
former swimmer Charlene Wittstock (born 1978) from South Africa and on July 2,
he married in church - due to lack of space in the cathedral in the courtyard of
Today Monaco is still a tax haven, especially for private individuals, as
very high salaries are paid tax-free there. The principality is home to over 30
internationally active banks, which, however, are subject to French supervision.