Monaco History


In the Grotte de l’Observatoire, settlement dates from about 200,000 to 25,000 BC. coated. Findings from there, as well as from the Grimaldi caves, can be found in the Musée d’Anthropologie prehistorique de Monaco, which also contains objects from the Greek and Roman eras.


From Massalia (Marseille) was founded in the 500s BC the colony of Monoikos, in Roman times the militarily important port city of Herculis Monoeci portus.

Monaco, which was part of Genoa’s power sphere during the Middle Ages, was ruled by the Grimaldi family from 1297 (final 1419). After periods of Spanish and French supremacy, Monaco was annexed by France in 1793, regained its freedom in 1814 but, after a decision by the Vienna Congress in 1815, became a protectorate under the Kingdom of Sardinia. In 1861, Monaco gained its current position as an independent principality, though strongly dependent on France. At the same time, the monegasque cities of Menton and Roquebrune, which in 1848 were declared free, were incorporated with France for a replacement to Prince Charles III of Monaco. See abbreviationfinder for geography, history, society, politics, and economy of Monaco. During his reign, Monaco quickly developed into a tourist and gaming paradise and, thanks to the revenues from the gaming business, was able to introduce tax relief in 1869.

Albert I abolished the princely monarchy in 1911. In 1918, a treaty was concluded with France, in which Monaco pledged to exercise its independence in accordance with French interests, while France undertook to defend the sovereignty and territorial integrity of the Principality. During World War II, Monaco was occupied by Italian and German troops.

Rainier III issued a new, more democratic constitution in 1962, which in 2002 was revised in an even more democratic direction. During Rainier’s reign (1949–2005), Monaco underwent rapid economic development. Construction activities expanded greatly, and the country’s surface area grew by a quarter through fillings in the sea. The casino has lost its state financial significance, while foreign companies and financial institutions have been tempted to establish themselves in Monaco through favorable conditions. International criticism and money laundering allegations have been directed at the Monegasque banking system. France forced Monaco in 1963 to apply French tax rules to most French citizens in the Principality.