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  #61  
Old 07-11-2010, 05:51 AM
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Originally Posted by Tosca View Post
Thanks for putting your trust in me!
I also think that speaking a languages, doesn't always require much schooling. Just think of little children that learn foreign languages so easily! My hubby's cousin is married to a South African lady, so their children were perfectly blingual before going to school. It mustn't be hard to learn a foreign language, when your father's first language is French, your mother's is English, and you have German speaking nannies around.

I know you are our erudite when it comes to Italy and its borders.
The best time to learn a language and especially get the accent right is when you are a small child. Even so, not every child picks up a second or third language in the same way. Some may develop a stutter under the pressure.
It is interesting that the three Grimaldi children ended up speaking English with a different accent, depending on environmental and perhaps emotional circumstances. A treasure trove for a linguist's research!
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  #62  
Old 07-11-2010, 06:44 AM
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Just a quick correction. Rainier's first language is technically not French. It has long been stated/known that Rainier and Antoinette learnt English before they learnt French. Why I don't know but apparently that is the case.
I have never heard Caroline speaking Spanish, so I am not sure with what proficiency she speaks it (being a Spanish native myself) however, I doubt her grasp of Spanish and Italian. I know that she is not fluent enough in German to give a court testimony, as the media reported earlier this year when she testified for Ernst, she started with „Wo soll ich beginnen?“ ("Where should I start?") but continued her testimony in English.
However, as I keep saying, she does not need to speak German to converse with Ernst. The times I saw them in Paris, it was very clear that they talked to each other in English. Apparently, Ernst understands French but does not speak it with Caroline and there was a poster here some time ago who said that Alexandra was learning French with her mom and English with her dad and German with her nanny so I think the relating of German to Ernst just because he's German is slightly irrelevant.
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  #63  
Old 07-11-2010, 06:56 AM
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Just a quick correction. Rainier's first language is technically not French. It has long been stated/known that Rainier and Antoinette learnt English before they learnt French. Why I don't know but apparently that is the case.
I have never heard Caroline speaking Spanish, so I am not sure with what proficiency she speaks it (being a Spanish native myself) however, I doubt her grasp of Spanish and Italian. I know that she is not fluent enough in German to give a court testimony, as the media reported earlier this year when she testified for Ernst, she started with „Wo soll ich beginnen?“ ("Where should I start?") but continued her testimony in English.
However, as I keep saying, she does not need to speak German to converse with Ernst. The times I saw them in Paris, it was very clear that they talked to each other in English. Apparently, Ernst understands French but does not speak it with Caroline and there was a poster here some time ago who said that Alexandra was learning French with her mom and English with her dad and German with her nanny so I think the relating of German to Ernst just because he's German is slightly irrelevant.
What do you mean "the relating of German to Ernst just because he's German is slightly irrelevant"? Do you mean that Caroline doesn't need to speak German, or that she doesn't need to have knowledge of German and the German culture for them to communicate effectively?

I would assume that when you are married to a person whose native language and culture are different from your own, the relating of that person's language and culture would facilitate and enrich communication, not to mention that it seems like a basic common courtesy.
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  #64  
Old 07-11-2010, 07:09 AM
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Originally Posted by iloveroyals View Post
What do you mean "the relating of German to Ernst just because he's German is slightly irrelevant"? Do you mean that Caroline doesn't need to speak German, or that she doesn't need to have knowledge of German and the German culture for them to communicate effectively?

I would assume that when you are married to a person whose native language and culture are different from your own, the relating of that person's language and culture would facilitate and enrich communication, not to mention that it seems like a basic common courtesy.
I meant that she doesn't need to speak German just because Ernst is German, as they seem to communicate very effectively through English. It would seem - to me - that Ernst has enveloped himself more in English culture than his own German culture for many years, not only living in Britain but how would you say it... adopting their culture? I don't know how to say that properly in English, sorry.
I am not saying that she knows nothing of German and German culture, only that on the occasions I saw them in Paris (I used to live in Paris. I don't know them but I knew who they were - who doesn't - and frequented some of the same places and in particular the Café de Flore and yes, I eavesdropped. My voyeuristic tendencies took over ) and I heard them conversing with each other, it was in English, which shocked me because I honestly thought they would either converse in German or French. That is the only reason I said that it was slightly irrelevant, because they seem to have a way of communicating with each other very well that isn't German. But yes, I do agree that it is a basic common courtesy to at least know something of your spouses culture.
On another note sort of connected, am I right in recalling that Stephanie and Adans did not speak the same language? I think I remember reading that somewhere... that he spoke Portuguese (having been born in Portugal) and Stephanie only spoke Spanish. Now if that's true, that's probably even worse than Caroline and Ernst!
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  #65  
Old 07-11-2010, 07:20 AM
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Ernst and Caroline have been to Germany and Austria many times together. People don't live in a vacuum, and most of the time when you marry them you are introduced to their friends and family who may not be as cosmopolitan. I remember a young housewife, a high school graduate, who married a Japanese. She took pains to learn Japanese so she could entertain her elderly mother-in-law when she came to visit. One doesn't have to be perfectly fluent, but I find that the effort really pays off. Isn't it a shame that when you have a Monegasque and a German, they end up speaking English together? And people lament the attrition and loss of languages!
You less you know, and the more you miss out when you are not intimate with a spouse's native language and culture. I am sure Ernst and Caroline communicated effectively, but when with other people(German, Monegasque) there had to be a feeling of being an outsider with a gap they must have wanted to bridge.
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  #66  
Old 07-11-2010, 08:25 AM
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Originally Posted by Thecia View Post
I meant that she doesn't need to speak German just because Ernst is German, as they seem to communicate very effectively through English. It would seem - to me - that Ernst has enveloped himself more in English culture than his own German culture for many years, not only living in Britain but how would you say it... adopting their culture? I don't know how to say that properly in English, sorry.
I am not saying that she knows nothing of German and German culture, only that on the occasions I saw them in Paris (I used to live in Paris. I don't know them but I knew who they were - who doesn't - and frequented some of the same places and in particular the Café de Flore and yes, I eavesdropped. My voyeuristic tendencies took over ) and I heard them conversing with each other, it was in English, which shocked me because I honestly thought they would either converse in German or French. That is the only reason I said that it was slightly irrelevant, because they seem to have a way of communicating with each other very well that isn't German. But yes, I do agree that it is a basic common courtesy to at least know something of your spouses culture.
On another note sort of connected, am I right in recalling that Stephanie and Adans did not speak the same language? I think I remember reading that somewhere... that he spoke Portuguese (having been born in Portugal) and Stephanie only spoke Spanish. Now if that's true, that's probably even worse than Caroline and Ernst!

Anyone know a little more about Steph speaking Spanish?
As far as I know she and Adans talked to each other in English. I think Steph understands Spanish well and speaks it too but I honestly have no clue how fluent she is in Spanish. Adans speaks Spanish well I'd say.
Stephanie understands German too but doesn't speak much of it ( lack of practice I guess ). Her children use English a lot and do it naturally and well... I remember that Steph carried on Grace's tradition to read the kids bettime stories one in French one in English.
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  #67  
Old 07-11-2010, 04:12 PM
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Originally Posted by sebastian View Post
Anyone know a little more about Steph speaking Spanish?
As far as I know she and Adans talked to each other in English. I think Steph understands Spanish well and speaks it too but I honestly have no clue how fluent she is in Spanish. Adans speaks Spanish well I'd say.
Stephanie understands German too but doesn't speak much of it ( lack of practice I guess ). Her children use English a lot and do it naturally and well... I remember that Steph carried on Grace's tradition to read the kids bettime stories one in French one in English.
All I know is that several of her songs she has sung in Spanish...so I'm assuming at least back in that period of her life she was pretty fluent. I think her kids have a good mix of French and English at least.
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  #68  
Old 07-12-2010, 10:36 AM
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Originally Posted by Thecia View Post
On another note sort of connected, am I right in recalling that Stephanie and Adans did not speak the same language? I think I remember reading that somewhere... that he spoke Portuguese (having been born in Portugal) and Stephanie only spoke Spanish. Now if that's true, that's probably even worse than Caroline and Ernst!
BTW Adans has a good command of the Italian language, having lived in Italy to attend a school related to circus. I do not know what itis called in English, sorry. I heard him interviewed on the Italian TV once, but he didn't say anything about Stephanie...

Ducruet is fluent in Italian, although he speaks with a strong French accent, but this is normal. If I'm not mistaken his mother Maguy must be half Tuscan, like me and Paul the octopus...
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  #69  
Old 07-12-2010, 10:38 AM
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All I know is that several of her songs she has sung in Spanish...so I'm assuming at least back in that period of her life she was pretty fluent. I think her kids have a good mix of French and English at least.
Well, you don't need to be fluent in a particular language to sing in that very language. I mean, I learned a song in Japanese, but I can't speak Japanese, and have never studied it.
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  #70  
Old 07-12-2010, 02:46 PM
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Originally Posted by Tosca View Post
Well, you don't need to be fluent in a particular language to sing in that very language. I mean, I learned a song in Japanese, but I can't speak Japanese, and have never studied it.
...and the fact she's given several interviews in Spanish as well during this period....
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  #71  
Old 07-12-2010, 02:53 PM
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...and the fact she's given several interviews in Spanish as well during this period....
Erm, just because the magazine is Spanish doesn't necessarily mean that the interview was given in Spanish. Unless you mean there were video interviews of Steph speaking Spanish, though I've never seen any.
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  #72  
Old 07-12-2010, 03:56 PM
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Originally Posted by Thecia View Post
Erm, just because the magazine is Spanish doesn't necessarily mean that the interview was given in Spanish. Unless you mean there were video interviews of Steph speaking Spanish, though I've never seen any.
Me neither, but I'd like to see/hear them...
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  #73  
Old 07-12-2010, 07:06 PM
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Me neither, but I'd like to see/hear them...
Seriously? I've seen/read a ton.
1993 interview in HOLA!...PRINCESS STEPHANIE OF MONACO DIANA Hola mag Spain 1993 - eBay (item 270583211338 end time Jul-22-10 11:04:17 PDT)

An article claiming she had an affair with some Spanish singer at 15...pretty sure that's a high indication she speaks Spanish....Princess Stephanie Biography - Monsters and Critics
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  #74  
Old 07-12-2010, 07:23 PM
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Never heard that Stephanie speaks Spanish.
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  #75  
Old 07-12-2010, 11:26 PM
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Me neither. Here's the list I've heard/read:
Caroline
Fluent: French, English
Partially fluent: German, Italian
Conversational: Spanish, Greek?
Can read: Latin (from school)
Speaks in: English with Ernst, French with everyone else.
Albert
Fluent: French, English
Partially fluent: German, Italian
Conversational: Spanish, Portuguese?
Speaks in: Apparently prefers English to French.
Stephanie
Fluent: French, English
Partially fluent: Italian, Spanish
Conversational: German
Speaks in: French, mainly.
Andrea
Fluent: French, English, Italian
Partially fluent: German, Spanish
Speaks in: French? English probably with friends and possibly Spanish with Tatiana.
Charlotte
Fluent: French, English, Italian
Partially fluent: German
Speaks in: French, English.
Pierre
Fluent: French, English, Italian
Partially fluent: German
Conversational: Spanish
Speaks in: A blend of Italian and English.
Alexandra
Fluent: French, English
Partially fluent: German, Italian
Learning: Monégasque?
Speaks in: French with maman, English with Dad and German with the nanny (apparently)
Louis
Fluent: French, English, Monégasque
Partially fluent: Italian
Speaks in: From what I gather, French
Pauline
Fluent: French, English, Monégasque?
Partially fluent: Italian
Speaks in: Again, from what I gather, French
Camille
Fluent: French, English?
Partially fluent: Monégasque
Speaks in: French (Educated guess)
Ernst
Fluent: German, English
Partially fluent: French, Italian?
Speaks in: English, mainly. German if he's beating up cameramen.
Charlene
Fluent: English, Afrikaans
Conversational: French (France 2 interview - basically understands and speaks French, though not well, yet, had to switch to English in the middle of the interview)
Speaks in: English
I've heard that the Trio and friends speak English amongst themselves and from the video of the Rose Ball this year, that certainly seems to be the case. There's no verification however. And sorry for the really long post!
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  #76  
Old 07-13-2010, 04:55 AM
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Thanks for the list ...
...as for Stephanie being partially fluent in German: She understands coversational German and would be able to speak some if she needs to... I think she's far from being partially fluent... I'd say she even has a better grasp on Italian and Spanish. She told me she didn't learn German at schhol as there was no posssibility taking it at her school or something like that ... but I think she took Spanish.
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  #77  
Old 07-13-2010, 05:32 AM
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Thanks for the list ...
...as for Stephanie being partially fluent in German: She understands coversational German and would be able to speak some if she needs to... I think she's far from being partially fluent... I'd say she even has a better grasp on Italian and Spanish. She told me she didn't learn German at schhol as there was no posssibility taking it at her school or something like that ... but I think she took Spanish.
Edited. Thanks! If anyone else has anything to add/correct, let me know!
Note: Can someone clue me in on the languages spoken by Rainier and Grace? I know that Rainier was fluent in French and English but did he speak Italian or German and the like? And Grace spoke English fluently but I have always heard conflicting reports about her proficiency in French. I also heard that she learnt to speak Swahili whilst filming in Africa but I'm guessing that was just conversational?
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Old 07-13-2010, 12:48 PM
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Thanks for the super list Thecia! You made a job there!
As for Rainier and Grace, i only know what everyone else does: They spoke each other in english, and with their kids too, but Rainier used to speak french with their kids when Grace wasn't around. And the kids did the same, used to speak in french with each other and daddy, but with Grace in english.

I didn't know Andrea knows spanish! I mean, i suppose he knows some words in spanish, but partially fluent? That would make me happy
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  #79  
Old 07-16-2010, 02:29 PM
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This was the only book I could find (that is readily accessible) that has "French language" in its index. Some excerpts:

From : Grace of Monaco, an interpretive biography, by Steven Englund, Doubleday, 1984
1956: “She hardly even knew a smattering of French when she arrived.”
1959: visit to Paris with Charles de Gaulle: "Grace’s improving French served her well, as did her knowledge of (…) French history and culture."
1956-1962: "Rainier encouraged Grace to make new friends in Monaco, but it was hard for her—not just because she wasn’t yet comfortable in French, but because…”
“By the early sixties, Grace, Grace’s French was coming along better than she subjectively felt about it. She told a reporter in mid-1961, “French will be a constant struggle,” by which she meant that a perfect French accent was attainable (as indeed it is by 99.0 percent of foreigners.) In truth, Grace’s command of vocabulary, idiom, and diction was quite sound thanks to her actress’s ability to memorize and her ear for dialogue. And although Grace’s American accent plagued her, it was not unpleasant to natives. Rainier, for one, ceased hearing it. (When Father Tucker one day commented on Grace’s accent, the Prince snapped at him, “She speaks better French than you do.” To which the quick-witted old cleric replied, “My Lord Prince, I always knew that love is blind, but this is the first time I realized that love was deaf.”) In sum, by the early sixties, Grace had learned enough of the French language and the congenial Mediterranean way of doing business to function competently at the Monegasque Red Cross.
Note; the author stated earlier that “ to be competent, the president must speak the local language fluently enough to plead, beseech, scold, and exhort “en francais.”
In 1970, Grace presided over the founding of an Italian chapter of AMADE, giving one of her rare public speeches in a French noteworthy for its elegant poignancy.’
Quoting Arthur Lewis in “Those Philadelphia Kellys”, 1977, he criticizes his comments about Grace. Among others: “She has this stilted , vaguely bastardized French. It’s the damndest thing you ever heard, in this incredibly affected voice.”

1976: Grace’s only sharp disappointment with Children of Theatre Street concerned the French version of the film. She had fretted and prepared carefully and done a narration entirely in her adopted tongue—in which, by now, she was entirely fluent, but still slightly accented..”

When I have time, I'll research what the other biographies have to say.
I reread, with great pleasure, Daniel Ducruet's "Lettre a Stephanie" just to see if he mentioned any thing about the languages she spoke. Found nothing.
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Old 07-16-2010, 10:32 PM
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Me neither. Here's the list I've heard/read:
Caroline
Fluent: French, English
Partially fluent: German, Italian
Conversational: Spanish, Greek?
Can read: Latin (from school)
Speaks in: English with Ernst, French with everyone else.
Albert
Fluent: French, English
Partially fluent: German, Italian
Conversational: Spanish, Portuguese?
Speaks in: Apparently prefers English to French.
Stephanie
Fluent: French, English
Partially fluent: Italian, Spanish
Conversational: German
Speaks in: French, mainly.
Andrea
Fluent: French, English, Italian
Partially fluent: German, Spanish
Speaks in: French? English probably with friends and possibly Spanish with Tatiana.
Charlotte
Fluent: French, English, Italian
Partially fluent: German
Speaks in: French, English.
Pierre
Fluent: French, English, Italian
Partially fluent: German
Conversational: Spanish
Speaks in: A blend of Italian and English.
Alexandra
Fluent: French, English
Partially fluent: German, Italian
Learning: Monégasque?
Speaks in: French with maman, English with Dad and German with the nanny (apparently)
Louis
Fluent: French, English, Monégasque
Partially fluent: Italian
Speaks in: From what I gather, French
Pauline
Fluent: French, English, Monégasque?
Partially fluent: Italian
Speaks in: Again, from what I gather, French
Camille
Fluent: French, English?
Partially fluent: Monégasque
Speaks in: French (Educated guess)
Ernst
Fluent: German, English
Partially fluent: French, Italian?
Speaks in: English, mainly. German if he's beating up cameramen.
Charlene
Fluent: English, Afrikaans
Conversational: French (France 2 interview - basically understands and speaks French, though not well, yet, had to switch to English in the middle of the interview)
Speaks in: English
I've heard that the Trio and friends speak English amongst themselves and from the video of the Rose Ball this year, that certainly seems to be the case. There's no verification however. And sorry for the really long post!
Charlotte: Fluent in Italian, prefers to speak Italian more than any other language, probably depending on who she's with. I believe Andrea and Pierre are the same. Camille is fluent in English, yes. She, Louis and Pauline speak and write in a mix of French and English mostly. i've also read that the Casi trio speaks Portuguese. Grace said in her last interview ever that all three of her kids speak fluent French and English, two speak German and Italian fluently, and two speak Spanish fluently. But she never specified which was which. Albert also speaks fluent lang Monégasque, so does Louis supposedly, but I don't know about the others on that one.
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