Grimaldi Family - Biography
Honoré III, Prince of Monaco
Prince Honoré III (November 10, 1720
-March 21, 1795) ruled the Principality of Monaco for almost sixty years from 1733 to 1793. He son of Jacques François Leonor Grimaldi, Prince de Monaco, Duc de Valentinois and Louise Hippolyte de Monaco, Princesse de Monaco, Duchesse de Valentinois.
Honoré IV, Prince of Monaco
Honoré IV (May 17, 1758-February 16, 1819) was Sovereign Prince of Monaco. He was succeeded by his eldest son, Prince Honoré and Maria Caterina Brignole. He regained control of the principality from outside forces and passed on his titles to Honoré V of Monaco.
Honoré V, Prince of Monaco
Honoré V (May 14, 1778 in Paris, France -October 2, 1841) was Sovereign Prince of Monaco. He was th son of Honoré IV of Monaco and Louise Felicite Victoire d'Aumont, Duchesse de Mazarin et de La Meilleraye. He was succeeded by his younger brother, Prince Florestan.
Florestan I, Prince of Monaco
Florestan I (October 10, 1785 in Paris, France –June 20, 1856) was Prince of Monaco from October 2, 1841 until his death. He was the second son of Prince Honoré IV, and succeeded to the throne on the death of his brother, Honoré V.
Florestan was never prepared to assume the role of prince—he had been an actor in the Theatre de l’Ambigu-Comique— and the real power during his reign lay in the hands of his wife, Caroline Gilbert of Lametz. For some time, she was able to alleviate the difficult economic situation stemming from Monaco's new position as a protectorate of the Kingdom of Sardinia, rather than of France. The royal couple also attempted to meet local demands for greater democracy and offered two constitutions to the local population, but these were rejected, particularly by the people of Menton. When they saw that their efforts were doomed to failure, they handed over power to their son Charles (later Prince Charles III).
This was, however, too little, too late. Encouraged by the events of 1848, the towns of Menton and Roquebrune, revolted, and declared themselves independent. They had hoped to be annexed by Sardinia, but this did not occur, and the towns remained in a state of political limbo until they were finally ceded to France in 1861, under Charles III.
Despite his good intentions, by the time of Florestan's death in 1856, Monaco was a country divided with few prospects for financial prosperity. It remained for his heir to remedy the situation.
Charles III, Prince of Monaco
Prince Charles III of Monaco (December 8, 1818 - September 10, 1889) was reigning Prince of Monaco from June 20, 1856 to his death. He was the founder of the famous casino in Monte Carlo. He was son to Florestan I of Monacoand Maria Caroline Gibert de Lametz.
Charles was married on September 28, 1846 to Antoinette Ghislaine. He was succeeded by his son Albert I of Monaco. During his reign, the towns of Mentonand Roquebrune, constituting some 80 percent of Monegasque territory, were formally ceded to France, paving the way for formal French recognition of Monaco's independence.
Albert I, Prince of Monaco
Albert I (November 13, 1848 – June 26, 1922) was the reigning Prince of Monaco from September 10, 1889 – June 26, 1922).
Born Albert Honoré Charles Grimaldi on November 13, 1848 in Paris, France, the son of Prince Charles III (1818-1889), and Countess Antoinette Ghislaine de Merode-Westerloo (1828-1864).
As a young man, Prince Albert served in the Spanish navy, but during the Franco-Prussian War he joined the French Navy where he was awarded the Legion of Honor. He was only 22 years old when he began to develop an interest in the then relatively new science of oceanography. After several years of study, Albert showed his ingenuity by devising a number of techniques and instruments used for measurement and exploration. Accompanied by some of the world's leading marine scientists, he recorded numerous oceanographic studies, maps and charts. He then founded what would become the world renowned "Oceanographic Institute" in Monaco that included an aquarium, a museum, and a library plus research facilities in Paris.
In addition to his interest in oceanographic studies, Albert had an keen interest in the origins of man and in Paris, he founded the "Institute for Human Paleontology" that was responsible for a number of archeological digs. Albert's intellectual achievements gained him worldwide recognition and in 1909, the "British Academy of Science" made him a member. In 1920, the "American Academy of Science" awarded Prince Albert its gold medal for his achievements.
Despite his heroic military service, the Prince became a pacifist, establishing the "International Institute of Peace" in Monaco as a place to develop a peaceful settlement to conflict through arbitration. In the tension filled times leading up to World War I, Prince Albert made numerous attempts to dissuade Germany's Kaiser Wilhelm II from war. When war came, Monaco declared its neutrality but in fact provided the Allied forces with hospitals, convalescent centers, and soldiers, including Prince Albert's own son, Louis II.
On September 21, 1869, Prince Albert was married to Lady Mary Victoria Hamilton (1850-1922), of Lanarkshire, Scotland, a daughter of the 11th Duke of Hamilton and his royal wife, Princess Marie of Baden. Within a year of their marriage, the couple's only child, Louis was born, but the strong-willed 19-year-old Scots Lady Mary disliked Monaco and everything about it. Shortly thereafter, she left Monaco permanently and the marriage was annulled in 1880. That same year, the former Princess of Monaco married in Florence, Italy, as her second husband, a Hungarian nobleman, Tassilo, Prince Festetics von Tolna, 1850-1933. They had a daughter, Maria, who would become the paternal grandmother of the fashion designer Egon von Fürstenberg and his sister Ira von Fürstenberg, a European B-movie actress who would later become a companion of her cousin Rainier III of Monaco.
On September 10, 1889, Albert ascended to the throne of Monaco on the death of his father and that same year he married the dowager duchess de Richelieu, née Marie Alice Heine (1858-1925). An American, the daughter of a New Orleans, Louisiana building contractor of German Jewish descent, Alice Heine had married the duc de Richelieu but had been widowed by age 21, with a young son, Armand. Her relationship and marriage to Prince Albert proved an equal blessing for him and the tiny principality of Monaco. To the marriage, she brought a strong business acumen, showing an understanding far beyond her years. Having helped put her husband's principality on a sound financial footing, she would devote her energies to making Monaco one of Europe's great cultural centers with its Opera, theater, and the ballet under the direction of the famed Russian impresario, Serge Diaghilev.
Despite the initial success of Prince Albert and Princess Alice, in 1902 this marriage too ended, due to the princess's affair with the composer Isidore de Lara, a liaison that resulted in the princess publicly being slapped in the face by her husband during an evening at the opera. The couple separated but never divorced.
On January 5, 1911, Prince Albert I granted Monaco a Constitution but the document had little real meaning in terms of reducing autocratic rule and was soon suspended by the Prince when World War I broke out. Also in 1911, Prince Albert was responsible for the creation of the Monte Carlo Rally, an automobile race designed to draw tourists to Monaco and the Casino.
Prince Albert I of Monaco died on June 26, 1922 in Paris, France and was succeeded by his son, Louis II.
Albert I constituted a collection of postage stamps that was later continued by Louis II and finally main part of the postal museum Rainier III created in 1950.
Louis II, Prince of Monaco
Louis II of Monaco (July 12, 1870 – May 9, 1949) was the Sovereign Prince of Monaco from June 26, 1922 until May 9, 1949.
Born Louis Honoré Charles Antoine Grimaldi, a.k.a Prince Louis of Monaco, in Baden-Baden, Germany, he was the only child of Prince Albert I of Monaco (1848 - 1922), and Lady Mary Victoria Hamilton (December 11, 1850 - May 14, 1922), of Lanarkshire, Scotland. His mother was a daughter of William Alexander Anthony Archibald Hamilton, 11th Duke of Hamilton, and his wife, Princess Marie Amélie Elizabeth Caroline of Baden.
Within a year of his parents' marriage Louis was born, but his mother, a strong-willed 19-year-old, disliked Monaco and was unhappy with her husband. Shortly thereafter, she left the country permanently, and the princely couple's marriage was annulled in 1880. Louis was raised in Germany by his mother and stepfather, Tassilo, Prince Festetics de Tolna, along with his half-sister, Alexandra, and did not see his father until age 11 when he was obliged to return to Monaco to be trained for his future royal duties.
Louis' father, Prince Albert I, was a dominating personality who had made Monaco a center of cultural activity and whose intellectual achievements were recognized around the world. Unhappy, living with his cold and distant father, as soon as he was old enough, Louis went to France, enrolling in the Saint-Cyr Military Academy. Four years later, after graduating, he asked to be posted with the French Foreign Legion fighting the wars in the African colonies.
While stationed in Algeria, he met Marie Juliette Louvet (1867 - 1930), a cabaret singer.1 (Juliette was already the mother of two children, Georges and Marguerite, by her former husband, French "girlie" photographer Achille Delmaet.) Reportedly, Prince Louis fell deeply in love but, because of what in those days was seen as her ignominious station in life, his father would not permit the marriage. It has been asserted that Louis ignored his father and married Juliette in 1897: there is, however, no evidence for this allegation. Their illegitimate daughter Charlotte Louise Juliette, born on September 30, 1898 in Constantine, Algeria. (There is no mention of Marie Juliette Louvet in the authorized biography of her grandson, Prince Rainier III, who is Monegasque by nationality but genealogically is French, Spanish, Italian, German, and Scottish.)
For ten years, Louis served in the military with distinction, being awarded the cross of the Legion of Honor. In 1908 he returned home, leaving behind his mistress and daughter. At the outbreak of World War I, he re-enlisted in the French army, proving to be one of the Fifth Army’s most outstanding soldiers. He was made a Grand Officer of the Legion of Honor and eventually became a Brigadier General. While many of his Grimaldi ancestors had served in the military, none had ever acquitted themselves with more distinction than Louis.
A political crisis loomed for the Prince because without any other heir, the throne of Monaco would pass to his first cousin, the duke of Urach, a German nobleman who was a son of Prince Albert's aunt, Princess Florestine of Monaco. To ensure this did not happen, in 1911 a law was passed recognizing his bastard daughter, Charlotte, as Louis's acknowledged heir, and making her part of the sovereign family. This law was later held to be invalid under the 1882 statutes. Thus another law was passed in 1918 modifying the statutes to allow the adoption of an heir, with succession rights. Charlotte was formally adopted by Louis in 1919, and became Charlotte Louise Juliette Grimaldi, Hereditary Princess of Monaco, and Duchess of Valentinois.
On June 27, 1922, Prince Albert I died in Paris. Louis Grimaldi ascended to the throne as Louis II, Prince of Monaco. While his reign never achieved the grandeur of his father, Louis II left an indelible imprint on the tiny principality. In 1924 the Monaco Football Club was formed and in 1929, the first Grand Prix of Monaco automobile race was held, won by Charles Grover (aka "Williams") driving a Bugatti painted in what would become the famous British racing green color.
In 1931, the prestige of Monaco's cultural life received a boost when René Blum was hired to form the "Ballet de l'Opéra à Monte-Carlo." Just before the outbreak of World War II in 1939, a modern large football stadium had been built where the World University Games were staged at the newly named "Stade Prince Louis II."
While Prince Louis' sympathies were strongly pro-French, he tried to keep Monaco neutral during World War II but supported the Vichy Francegovernment of his old army colleague, Marshall Pétain. Nonetheless, his tiny principality was tormented by domestic conflict partly as a result of Louis' indecisiveness and also because the majority of the population was of Italian descent and they supported the fascist regime of Italy's Benito Mussolini. In 1943, the Italian army invaded and occupied Monaco, setting up a fascist government administration. Shortly thereafter, following Mussolini's collapse in Italy, the German army occupied Monaco and began the deportation of the Jewish population. Among them was René Blum, founder of the Opera, who died in a Nazi concentration camp. Under Prince Louis' secret orders, the Monaco police, often at great risk to themselves, warned people in advance that the Gestapo was about to arrest them.
However, throughout the War, Prince Louis' vacillation caused an enormous rift with his grandson Rainier, the heir to the throne, who strongly supported the Allies against the Nazis.
Following the liberation of Monaco by the Allied forces, the 75-year-old Prince Louis did little for his principality and it began to fall into severe neglect. By 1946 he was spending most of his time in Paris and on July 27th of that year, he married for the first time. His wife was Ghislaine Dommanget (1900 - 1991), a French film actress and former wife of actor André Brulé. Absent from Monaco during most of the final years of his reign, he and his wife lived at Le Marchais, the family estate near Paris.
Prince Louis died in 1949 and is buried at the Cathedral of Saint Nicholas in Monte Carlo, Monaco. His widow, Ghislaine, Dowager Princess of Monaco, died on April 30, 1991 in Paris, where she was interred in the Passy Cemetery.
Hereditary Princess Charlotte ceded her succession rights to her son, Rainier, in 1944, at which time he became Hereditary Prince. When Louis died five years later, he was succeeded by his grandson, Prince Rainier III.
Princess Charlotte, Duchess of Valentinois
Her Serene Highness Princess Charlotte, Duchess of Valentinois (Charlotte Louise Juliette Grimaldi, née Louvet) (30 September 1898 – 15 November 1977), styled HSH The Princess Charlotte, was the daughter of Louis II, Prince of Monaco, and the mother of Prince Rainier III. From 1919 until 1944, she was the Hereditary Princess of Monaco, heiress to the throne.
Birth and adoption
Born Charlotte Louvet in Constantine, Algeria, she was the illegitimate daughter of Marie Juliette Louvet, a cabaret singer, and Prince Louis II. On the death of Prince Louis II, theretofore without a legitimate heir, the throne of Monaco was due to pass to the German Duke of Urach, Louis II's cousin, son of Princess Florestine of Monaco; to forestall this event, on 15 May 1911 a law was passed recognizing Charlotte as Louis's daughter, and making her part of the sovereign family. Though it was later held to be invalid under the 1882 statutes, an Ordinance of 30 October 1918 allowed her to be adopted. Louis adopted Charlotte in Paris on 16 May 1919, bestowing on her the surname Grimaldi and the titles of Hereditary Princess of Monaco and Duchess of Valentinois; she was thus his heir apparent from 1919 until 30 May 1944 (see below).
Legality of Adoption
A shadow of doubt exists over the legality of this adoption. The Monegasque Civil Code (Articles 240 and 243) required that the adopting party to be at least fifty and the adoptee twenty-one. The 1918 Ordinance changed the age limit to eighteen ( Charlotte was twenty at the time) but not the other age limit and Louis was only forty-eight.
In 1920, Louis arranged Charlotte's marriage to Count Pierre de Polignac of Guidel, Morbihan, Brittany, France who, by the Prince's ordinance, took the surname Grimaldi and became a Prince of Monaco. The couple had two children:
On 30 May1944, the day before her son's 21st birthday and in full agreement with her father, Charlotte ceded her rights to the throne to her son Rainier, subject to the stipulation that he did not predecease her. From this date she was no longer Hereditary Princess of Monaco, though she retained the titles of Princess of Monaco and Duchess of Valentinois.
Late in life she went to college, obtaining a degree in social work. After her son assumed the throne, Princess Charlotte moved to live at Marchais, the Grimaldi estate outside of Paris. Despite the objections of her children who feared for her safety, she turned the estate into a rehabilitation centre for ex-convicts. She lived at the estate with her lover, a noted French former jewel thief named René Girier and nicknamed "René la Canne" (René the Cane).
In 1977, Princess Charlotte died in Paris, France.
Pierre de Polignac
Count Pierre Marie Xavier Raphael Antoine Melchior de Polignac (24 October 1895 - 10 November 1964), was son of Count Maxence de Polignac (1857 - 1936) and his Mexican-born Spanish wife, Susana de la Torre y Mier (1858-1913). He is best known for having been the father of Rainier III of Monaco.
Because a female Grimaldi of the princely house of Monaco could inherit the throne only if her husband was also a Grimaldi, Pierre de Polignac became Prince Pierre Grimaldi, Comte de Polignac on 18 March 1920, the day before his religious marriage. He also acquired, via marriage, the title of duc de Valentinois.
He married civilly 18 March 1920 in Monaco Princess Charlotte of Monaco, née Charlotte Louise Juliette Louvet, the legitimated daughter of Louis II of Monaco and Marie Juliette Louvet. They were judicially separated on 20 March 1930 at Paris, and divorced by ordinance of Prince Louis II on 18 February 1933. The Count and his wife had two children, Princess Antoinette of Monaco (b. 1920) and Rainier III of Monaco.
Following her divorce, Princess Charlotte took up residence at Château de Marchais, the Grimaldi family home near Paris, with René Gigier, one of France’s most infamous jewel thieves. She died in 1977.
Princess Antoinette, Baroness of Massy
Princess Antoinette, Baroness of Massy (born Antoinette Louise Alberte Suzanne Grimaldi) (b. 28 December 1920) is a member of the princely family of Monaco and the elder sister of the late Prince Rainier III. Her parents were Count Pierre de Polignac and Princess Charlotte, Duchess of Valentinois.
Three children were born to Princess Antoinette and her lover Alexandre-Athenase Noghès, a Monegasque-born International tennis champion: Elisabeth-Anne] (born 1947), Christian Louis, (born 1949), and Christine Alix 1951–1989). The parents subsequently married in Genoa on December 4, 1951 and divorced in 1954. The children were named Grimaldi at birth but by an ordinance of November 15, 1951 their names were changed to de Massy.
Her second husband, Jean-Charles Rey, a writer, was married to her from 1961 to 1973.
Her third husband was John Gilpin, a renowned British ballet dancer, whom she married on July 28, 1983. He died the following September.
Princess Antoinette is known to be somewhat eccentric, even having been described as "completely mad" by her servants and she lives down the coast from Monaco at Èze with a large collection of dogs and cats.
Even though she was Heiress Presumptive between 1949 and 1957, Princess Antoinette and her descendants lost their place in the line of succession to the Monegasque Throne, which they acquired in 2002 with the reform of the succession rules, with the death of Rainier III.
From Wikipedia.com Part 1
Rainier III, Prince of Monaco
Prince Rainier III (Rainier Louis Henri Maxence Bertrand Grimaldi; May 31, 1923–April 6, 2005), styled HSH The Sovereign Prince of Monaco, ruled the Principality of Monaco for almost fifty-six years, making him one of the longest ruling monarchs of the 20th Century.
Though he was best known outside of Europe for having married American actress Grace Kelly, he was also responsible for reforms to Monaco's constitution and for expanding the principality's economy beyond its traditional gambling base. Gambling accounts for approximately three percent of the nation's annual revenue today; when Rainier ascended the throne in 1949, it accounted for more than 95 percent.
After grave illness in March 2005, Rainier died on April 6; his only son, Albert, succeeded him as Prince Albert II.
Of French, German, Scottish, English, Spanish, and Italian ancestry, Rainier was born in Monaco, the only son of Prince Pierre of Monaco, Duke of Valentinois (né Count Pierre de Polignac]) and his wife, Hereditary Princess Charlotte, Duchess of Valentinois. Born in Algeria, his mother was the only child of Prince Louis II and his partner, Marie Juliette Louvet; she was later legitimized through formal adoption and subsequently named heiress to the throne of Monaco. His father was a half-French, half-Spanish nobleman from Brittany who adopted his wife's surname, Grimaldi, upon marriage and was made a prince of Monaco by his father-in-law.
Rainier had one sibling, HSH Princess Antoinette, Baroness of Massy, an unpopular figure generally believed to be meddlesome enough regarding her children's place in the line of succession to have forced Princess Grace to demand that she leave the country.
The prince was a direct descendant of Stéphanie de Beauharnais, an adopted daughter of Napoleon Bonaparte, and of William Thomas Beckford, the scandalous 18th century English collector, tastemaker, writer, and eccentric.
Rainier was first sent to study at the Summerfield College in St. Leonards-on-Sea, England, and later at Stowe, a prestigious English public school in Buckinghamshire. From there, he went to the Institut Le Rosey in Rolle and Gstaad, Switzerland, before continuing to the University of Montpellier in France, where he obtained a Bachelor of Arts degree, and finally to the Institut d'études politiques de Paris in Paris.
Rainier's maternal grandfather, Prince Louis II, had been a general in the French army during World War I. During World War II, Rainier served as an artillery officer in the army. As a second lieutenant, he fought so courageously during the German counter-offensive in Alsace that he won the Croix de Guerre and Bronze Star and was given the rank of Chevalier in the Legion of Honor.
On May 9, 1949, Rainier became the Sovereign Prince of Monaco on the death of Prince Louis II. His mother had previously renounced her rights to the throne in his favor.
In the 1940s and 1950s, the prince lived with the French film star Gisèle Pascal (née Gisèle Tallone, 1923–). The couple reportedly separated when a doctor declared the actress to be infertile; in fact, she later married and had several children.
Marriage and family
After a year-long courtship described as containing "a good deal of rational appraisal on both sides" (Times of London, April 7, 2005, page 59), in 1956, Prince Rainier married Oscar-winning American actress Grace Kelly (1929–1982). Their children are:
Rainer III was also a football fan, having followed AS Monaco FC to the 2004 Champions League final. Monaco has for years hosted the European Super Cup.
From Wikipedia.com Part 2
Rainier III, Prince of Monaco
Actions as Prince
After ascending the throne, Prince Rainier III worked assiduously to recoup Monaco's luster, which had become tarnished through neglect (especially financial) and scandal (his mother, Princess Charlotte, took a noted jewel thief known as René the Walking Stick as her lover). According to numerous obituaries, the prince was faced upon his ascension with a treasury that was practically empty. The holder of 55 percent of the nation's reserves, the Societé Monégasque de Banques et de Métaux Précieux, was bankrupt. The small nation's traditional gambling clientele, largely European aristocrats, found themselves with reduced funds after World War II. Other gambling centers had opened to compete with Monaco, many of them successfully. To compensate for this loss of income, Prince Rainier decided to promote Monaco as a tax haven, commercial center, real-estate development opportunity, and international tourist attraction. The early years of his reign saw the overweening involvement of the Greek shipping tycoon Aristotle Onassis, who took control of the Société des Bains de Mer and envisioned Monaco as solely a gambling resort. Prince Rainier regained control of the Société in 1964, effectively ensuring that his vision of Monaco would be implemented.
As Prince of Monaco, Rainier III also was responsible for the principality's new constitution in 1962 which significantly reduced the power of the sovereign. (He suspended the previous Constitution in 1959, saying that it "has hindered the administrative and political life of the country.") The changes ended autocratic rule, placing power with the prince and a National Council of eighteen elected members.
At the time of his death, he was the world's second longest-serving Head of State, ranking just below King Rama IX of Thailand.
Illness and death
In the last three years of his life, Prince Rainier's health progressively declined. In early 2004, he was hospitalized for coronary problems. In October he was again in hospital with a lung infection. In November of that year, Prince Albert appeared on CNN's Larry King Live and told Larry King that his father was fine, though he was suffering from bronchitis. On March 7, 2005, he was again hospitalized with a lung infection. Rainier was moved to the hospital's intensive care unit on March 22. One day later, on March 23, it was announced he was on a ventilator, suffering from renal and heart failure. On March 26, the palace reported that despite intensive ongoing efforts to improve the prince's health, he was continuing to deteriorate; however, the following day, he was reported to be conscious, his heart and kidney conditions having stabilized. His prognosis remained "very reserved".
On March 31, 2005, the Palais Princier announced that Rainier's son, Hereditary Prince Albert, Marquis des Baux, would take over the duties of his father as Regent since Rainier was no longer able to exercise his royal functions.
On April 1, 2005, the Palace announced that Rainier's chances of recovery were "slim"; on April 6 it announced that Prince Rainier had died at 6:35 am local time at the age of 81. He was succeeded by his only son, who became Prince Albert II.
He was buried on April 15, 2005, beside his wife, Princess Grace, at the Cathedral of Saint Nicholas in Monaco. Built in the 19th century and also known as Monaco Cathedral, the neo-Romanesque structure is the resting place of 17 previous sovereign princes of Monaco and several of their wives; it also is where Prince Rainier and Princess Grace were married in 1956.
Rainier's official shortened title was His Serene Highness Rainier III, Sovereign Prince of Monaco; this does not include the many other hereditary titles acquired by the Grimaldi family (see Prince of Monaco for a complete list).
His other non-hereditary titles and awards included:
Rainier III created a postal museum in 1950 by using the collections of Albert I and Louis II. Since 1996 this museum is called Musée des timbres et monnaies.
Creator of the philatelic Club de Monte-Carlo in 1997, he organized with its members some exhibitions with rare and exceptional postage stamps and letters.
During all his reign, Rainier III surveyed all the process of creation of Monaco stamps. He liked stamps printed in intaglio and the art of engraver Czesław Słania.
Thank you for doing this work, tbhrc ... I'll try to find some more and post it ...
Grace Patricia Kelly (November 12, 1929 - September 14, 1982) was an Oscar-winning American film actress who, as a result of marriage to Prince Rainier III of Monaco, became Her Serene Highness Princess Grace of Monaco. She was the mother of the principality's current reigning Sovereign Prince, Albert II of Monaco. Princess Grace was required to renounce her American citizenship upon her marriage.
Kelly was born in Philadelphia, Pennsylvania, to John Brendan Kelly Sr. (October 4, 1889- June 20, 1960) and Margaret Katherine Majer, a Catholic convert from Lutheranism. Kelly's father's Irish American Catholic family (originally from Kidney Lake, Newport, Co. Mayo, Ireland) were new but prominent figures in Philadelphia society. Her father was a self-made millionaire and a gold-medal-winning Olympic sculler, and her brother "Jack" followed in that tradition. Kelly Drive in Philadelphia is named for John, Jr., who was a city councilman there. Her father's family was large and she had two prominent uncles in the arts: one, Walter Kelly, was a vaudevillian, and the other was the acclaimed playwright, George Kelly. Kelly's maternal grandparents, Carl Majer and Margaretha Berg, were of Germandescent.
Though her family had opposed her becoming an actress, Kelly became a fashion model and appeared in her first film, Fourteen Hours (1951), when she was 22. The following year she "starred" with a minor role in High Noon (1952), a generally praised but somewhat controversial western starring Gary Cooper.
Her next film, Mogambo (1953), was a drama set in the Kenyan jungle which centers on the love triangle portrayed by Kelly, Clark Gable, and Ava Gardner. Whilst filming this movie she had an affair with Gable later memorably commenting "What else is there to do if you're alone in a tent in Africa with Clark Gable]?" The movie earned Kelly an Oscar nomination for Best Supporting Actress, but the award went to Donna Reed for her role in From Here to Eternity. Kelly made three films with Alfred Hitchcock: Dial M for Murder, Rear Window, and To Catch a Thief.
In 1955, she was awarded the Academy Award for Best Actress for The Country Girl. While it was being filmed, she was romanced by co-star Bing Crosby, a fellow Irish Catholic, (who had recently lost his wife) but Kelly always denied that they had an affair.
Life as Princess
The musical comedy High Society (1956) was her last film, as her marriage to Prince Rainier III of Monaco marked her retirement from acting. Before her marriage, she was previously allegedly involved with Clark Gable, Bing Crosby, Ray Milland, William Holden, Oleg Cassini, and Jean-Pierre Aumont. She reportedly was surprised to learn from Rainier that she was expected to give up her film career entirely, but followed his wishes grudgingly.
Her Catholicism and ability to bear children were key factors in her being chosen to marry Prince Rainier. Tales were circulated that Monaco would revert to France in the absence of an heir; and though there is no requirement for a Catholic marriage, it was thought unlikely that a Catholic prince would divorce and remarry if his chosen wife were barren. In fact, there was really little actual danger that Monaco would revert to France since, in 1882, a childless prince of Monaco adopted an unrelated heir, thereby ensuring Monaco's survival as a principality. Prince Rainier's maternal grandfather, Prince Louis II of Monaco also legitimized his illegitimate daughter Charlotte Louvet, who would become Rainier's mother and made her his heir Princess Charlotte of Monaco.
Before Grace Kelly drew Rainier's attention, French film star Gisèle Pascal (neé Giselle Marie Madeleine Tallone) had been his love interest for six years. Gisèle and Rainier supposedly parted when a physical examination reportedly found her to be infertile, but Giséle later married Raymond Pellegrin on October 8, 1955, and bore at least one child.
Prince Rainier and Princess Grace had three children:
At the age of 52, in September 1982, Princess Grace suffered a stroke while driving. It had been rumored that she was driving on the same stretch of highway in Monaco that had been featured in To Catch a Thief, although her son claims that it was not. It resulted in an accident, and she died the next day without regaining consciousness. Princess Stéphanie, who was alleged by some sources to have been the actual driver of the car, suffered only minor injuries.
Princess Grace is interred in St. Nicholas Cathedral, Monte Carlo, Monaco.
She was the first ever actress to appear on a postage stamp. (Source: The Book of Useless Information, published 2002.)
The French haute couture fashion house Hermès named one of its most famous, and now sought-after, products for Grace Kelly - the "Kelly Bag." Waiting lists of up to two years are not unusual for this handbag, and prices start at $5000 for the small bag in plain leather, rising past $50,000 for crocodile skin or other unusual materials.
The classic head-wrap using a silk scarf which is crossed under the chin and knotted at the side or nape of the neck is universally known as the "Grace Kelly." This chic look is still copied by many female Hollywood stars when they wish to retain a degree of anonymity in the public eye. Famous users include: Sharon Stone, Madonna, Annette Bening, and Jennifer Love Hewitt.
Caroline, Princess of Hanover
The Princess of Hanover, Hereditary Princess of Monaco (Caroline Louise Marguerite Prinzessin von Hannover), formally styled Her Royal Highness The Princess of Hanover (nee Her Serene Highness Princess Caroline of Moncaco) , formerly Mme Stefano Casiraghi, formerly Mme Phillippe Junot and née Grimaldi, born 23 January 1957) is the eldest child of Prince Rainier III of Monaco and his wife, Princess Grace. She is the second wife of Ernst August V, Prince of Hanover and, since her father's death on April 6, 2005, has been again heir presumptive to the throne of Monaco (she was in 1957 and 1958 between her own birth and the birth of her younger brother), bearing the title The Hereditary Princess of Monaco. She was educated at the Sciences Po in Paris, and Princeton University in the USA.
Her husband's title was abolished by Weimar Republic Germany after World War I, along with all royal and noble German titles, so the title 'HSH The Hereditary Princess of Monaco' is her only only undisputed title. Additionally, the Kingdom of Hanover has not existed since it was annexed by the Kingdom of Prussia during the Austro-Prussian War of 1866. Her husband is, however, legally entitled to use "Prince of Hanover" as a surname, so she is likewise permitted to call herself "Princess of Hanover" - but as a surname and style, not as a royal title. Neither she nor her husband enjoy any royal rank in modern Germany, the United Kingdom or the Republic of Ireland as Prince or Princess of Hanover or the United Kingdom.
The Princess of Hanover has a younger brother, Albert II, the current Sovereign Prince of Monaco, and one younger sister, Princess Stéphanie of Monaco.
Princess Caroline's first husband was Philippe Junot([1940), a Parisian banker. They were married on June 29, 1978, and divorced in 1980, a period of time that had been predicted by the bride's mother, who disapproved of Junot's age and his reputation as a playboy. In 1992, the Roman Catholic Church granted the princess an annullment.
Her second husband was Stefano Casiraghi (1960-1990), the sportsman heir to an Italian oil fortune. They were married on December 29, 1983, and had three children: Andrea Albert Pierre Casiraghi, Charlotte Marie Pomeline Casiraghi, and Pierre Rainier Stefano Casiraghi. The two younger children are named for their maternal great-grandparents, Princess Charlotte of Monaco and Prince Pierre of Monaco whilst Andrea was named for a childhood friend of his father's. The marriage ended on October 3, 1990 when Stefano Casiraghi was killed in a speed boating accident.
Princess Caroline had a liaison from 1990 until 1995 with French actor Vincent Lindon.
Her third and present husband is Prince Ernst August of Hanover, the head of the House of Hanover. They married in January 23, 1999, after his divorce from the former Chantal Hochuli, and have one child, Princess Alexandra of Hanover, who was born six months after their wedding.
On June 24, 2004, the Princess obtained a judgment from the European Court of Human Rights condemning Germany for non-respect of her right to a private life. The seven judges who examined her request ruled that German jurisdictions have misunderstood this right by refusing to forbid publication of photographs depicting Caroline in scenes of her daily life.
Because her brother Prince Albert remains unmarried and has no children, it is possible that Caroline will one day become the second Sovereign Princess in Monaco's history. Her ancestor Louise-Hippolyte Grimaldi held that title for a few months in 1731. There was precedent, however, for a Sovereign Prince to adopt an illegitimate child and thereby place that child at the front of the line of succession for the throne, as was done for Caroline's grandmother, Princess Charlotte, Duchess of Valentinois. This is no longer a valid option due to the constitutional changes of 2002.
Although Albert has publicly acknowledged at least one child born out of wedlock (Alexandre Coste, son of Togolese flight attendant Nicole Coste), unless Albert were to legitimize the child by marrying the mother, he cannot displace Caroline in the succession order.
Albert's lack of legitimate children prompted Prince Rainier to change the constitution to try to ensure a successor, which had the consequence of strengthening the place of Caroline and her descendants in the line of succession. On April 2, 2002, Monaco passed Princely Law 1.249 which provided that if the Sovereign Prince assumes the throne and then dies without a legitimate direct heir, the throne would pass to his siblings and their descendants under the rule of male-preference primogeniture. That change was then ratified by France, as required by a 1918 Franco-Monégasque treaty, on 4 October 2005. Before this change, the crown of Monaco could only pass to a direct descendant of the reigning prince, and Caroline would have become ineligible to inherit the throne upon Albert's accession.
Contrary to usage in most other monarchies, not only is the heir apparent to the Monégasque throne titled Hereditary Prince/ss, but whenever there is no heir apparent the heir presumptive legally bears the title of Hereditary Prince/ss. Therefore, Caroline first became Hereditary Princess of Monaco at birth. From the birth of her only brother until his accession to the throne as Albert II, she was legally Princess Caroline of Monaco, whereupon she resumed the position of heiress presumptive and Hereditary Princess. So long as Prince Albert remains without legitimate, dynastic issue, Princess Caroline remains first in line to succeed him on the throne. However, the firstborn legitimate child of Albert's would again displace her in the line of succession and become Hereditary Prince/ss, either as Albert's heir apparent if male, or as his heir presumptive if female.
In Monaco and other monarchies Caroline is usually referred to and addressed by the female form of the style attributed by tradition to her husband, i.e. Her Royal Highness the Princess of Hanover, rather than by her own legal title (Her Serene Highness the Hereditary Princess of Monaco). Historically, styles associated with kingdoms, such as Ernst August's, have been deemed higher than those associated with principalities. Should Caroline succeed Albert and become reigning Princess of Monaco, she would become HRH Caroline I, Princess of Monaco. She would retain the attribute of Royal Highness consistent with the tradition that conferred that style, for example, upon descendants of Grand Duchess Charlotte of Luxembourg as a result of her 1919 marriage to Prince Felix of Bourbon-Parma, member of a deposed dynasty that once reigned over a kingdom. As reigning Princess, however, Caroline would re-assume her dynastic maiden name of Grimaldi, pursuant to Article I of the principality's 2002 law on the Sovereign Family.
Styles & Titles from birth to present
Other styles accorded to the Princess of Hanover as the wife of Prince Ernest August of Hanover are: Princess of United Kingdom of Great Britain and Ireland, Duchess of Brunswick-Lunenburg, Duchess of Cumberland and Teviotdale. None of these titles (except the Monagesque) have been legally recognized since the end of World War I by any of the countries that once granted them: United Kingdom, Germany, and Ireland. However, among her styles, only Princess of Hanover is actually in common use in media reports and official Monaco palace press releases.
Andrea Albert Pierre Casiraghi is the eldest child of HSH Princess Caroline of Monaco and Hanover and her second husband, Stefano Casiraghi, an heir to an Italian oil fortune. He is currently second in line to the throne after his mother, meaning that if the currently reigning Prince Albert II dies without legitimate children, then Casiraghi will most likely someday be the Prince of Monaco.
He was born June 8, 1984 at 22:50 at Centre Hospitalier Princesse Grace in Monte Carlo and was named for a childhood friend of his father's.
His godparents were his aunt Princess Stéphanie and his uncle Marco Casiraghi.
He has two younger siblings, Charlotte and Pierre, and a younger half-sister, Princess Alexandra of Hanover.
Known for his delicate blond good looks and athletic skills — he rides, skis, plays football and also guitar — he was included by People Magazine in 2002 in the Top 50 World's Most Beautiful People. He is fluent in French, English, Italian, and German.
He is presently dating Tatiana Santo Domingo, a Colombian heiress whose family owns Avianca, a large Colombian airline.
Charlotte Marie Pomeline Casiraghi (born in 3 August 1986 at the Princess Grace Clinic in Montecarlo, Monaco) is the daughter of HSH Princess Caroline of Monaco (now Princess of Hanover) and her second husband, Stefano Casiraghi, an Italian industrialist. She is named for her maternal great-grandmother, Princess Charlotte of Monaco. Popular with paparazzi and society reporters, who find her stylish good looks to be reminiscent of her mother and maternal grandmother, Grace Kelly. Although she has not been given the title of princess (an attempt by her mother to give her daughter a more normal life), she is fourth in line to the throne of Monaco.
Along with her two brothers - Andrea, who is two years older, and her younger brother, Pierre born a year after her - grew up in the tiny Mediterranean principality ruled over by her maternal grandfather, Rainier III of Monaco. But when she was four years old, tragedy struck with the death of her father in a boat-accident.
Distraught, Princess Caroline moved the family to the beautiful Midi village of Saint Remy-de-Provence in France where the children grew up protected from the inquisitive eyes of the press. It was there that Charlotte learned to ride horses, a sport at which she excels today.
Then, in January 1999, Charlotte's life changed again. After almost a decade without a paternal figure, she gained a stepfather when Princess Caroline married longtime family friend Ernst August V, Prince of Hanover. Seven months later, a little half-sister, Princess Alexandra of Hanover, was born at a clinic in Austria. The family then moved to the Parisian suburb of Fontainebleau, so Princess Caroline and her new husband would have a base closer to his German roots and his children from a previous marriage, who live in London with their mother Chantal Hochuli.
Fluent in French, Italian, English – she also speaks a smattering of German, as befits her new status as a stepchild of one of the foremost German princelings – Charlotte has grown into a self-assured teenager.
Charlotte also lists skiing, snowboarding and swimming as hobbies. And she is a keen horsewoman. She appears to be inheriting her mother's inherent style and has begun to accompany Caroline on official engagements in Monte Carlo. She obtained an "excellent" (très bien) mark on her baccalaureate exam in July 2004. Presently, she is enrolled in the hypokhâgne course at the Lycée Fénelon, in St-Germain-des-Près - Paris, in order to prepare herself for the École Normale Supérieure (Paris) entrance exams.
Pierre Rainier Stefano Casiraghi is the youngest child of HSH Princess Caroline of Monaco (now Princess of Hanover) and her second husband, Stefano Casiraghi. He was born on September 5, 1987 at Centre Hospitalier Princesse Grace in Monte Carlo.
He is named for his maternal great-grandfather, Prince Pierre of Monaco, his maternal grandfather, Prince Rainier III of Monaco, and his father. His godparents are his uncle Prince Albert and his aunt by marriage Laura Casiraghi (the wife of Daniel Casiraghi).
He has two elder siblings: Andrea Albert Pierre Casiraghi and Charlotte Marie Pomeline Casiraghi, and one younger half-sister, HRH Princess Alexandra of Hanover.
He can speak fluent French, Italian, English, and some German. He also plays the saxophone.
Pierre Casiraghi is third in line to the throne of Monaco, following his mother and brother.
Princess Alexandra of Hanover
Alexandra Charlotte Ulrike Maryam Virginia Prinzessin von Hannover (July 20, 1999) styled Her Royal Highness Princess Alexandra of Hanover, is the only child of Ernst August V, Prince of Hanover and his second wife Princess Caroline of Monaco. She has half-siblings from each of her parents' previous marriages.
Through her father, she is descended from King George III of the United Kingdom and from Emperor Wilhelm II of Germany. Through her mother, she is descended from Prince Rainier III of Monaco and Grace Kelly.
Her full claimed title is: Her Royal Highness Princess Alexandra Charlotte Ulrike Maryam Virginia of Hanover, Duchess of Brunswick and Lunenburg, and Royal Princess of Great Britain and Ireland; however, both Germany and Ireland are republics, and the United Kingdom does not recognize the last title. Her style HRH The Princess Alexandra of Hanover is officially used in Monaco or by courtesy elsewere. She was born 20 July 1999 in Vöcklabruck, Austria six months after her parents' marriage.
She is, currently, the only one of Princess Caroline's four children who bears any royal style, and she is presently fifth in line to the throne of Monaco. She has four half-brothers, Prince Ernst, Jr. and Prince Christian of Hanover and Andrea and Pierre Casiraghi and one half sister Charlotte Casiraghi.
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