The history of the Rock of Monaco

The enchanting story of the Rock of Monaco


History and heritage of the Rock of Monaco

The Quartier du Rocher, also known as Monaco-Ville, is the historic heart of the Principality of Monaco. Nestled on a rocky promontory, this ancient district is full of history and heritage.

In the sixth century BC, the Massaliotes, Phocaeans from Massalia (now Marseille), founded the colony of Monoïkos on the Rock of Monaco. This colony was associated with Hercules, worshipped as the Hercules Monoecus.

In 1215, a detachment of Ghibellines, led by Fulco del Cassello, undertook the construction of a fortress on the Rock of Monaco with the aim of making it a strategic military position and controlling the region. Dwellings were also established at the base of the Rock to support the garrisons.

On January 8, 1297, Francis Grimaldi, descendant of Otto Canella, consul of Genoa in 1133, seized the fortress. Disguised as a Franciscan monk, he opened the doors to his soldiers and took control of the Rock. From this episode was born his nickname Malizia, which means "malice". The arms of Monaco still bear two Franciscans armed with a sword in reference to this event. It is interesting to note that the city of Monaco takes its name from the term "Monk" in Italian, due to this historical event that gave birth to this current name.

After the accession of Rainier I in 1309, his son Charles I is considered the true founder of Monaco. During his reign, Monaco acquired the lordships of Menton and Roquebrune, which considerably enlarged the territory of the Principality.

Despite setbacks, especially when Rainier II had to give way to the Genoese in 1357, the Grimaldis managed to retake Monaco in 1419 thanks to John I, son of Rainier II. Under Lambert's reign, Monaco was recognized as independent by King Charles VIII of France in 1489, thus establishing the undisputed sovereignty of the Grimaldis over the Principality after almost two centuries since the capture of the fortress by François "La Malizia".

In the following centuries, Monaco went through periods of Spanish protection and had to face significant financial burdens. However, Monaco's independence was confirmed by Louis XII of France, paving the way for a lasting alliance between the Princes of Monaco and the Kings of France.

In 1612, the title "Prince of Monaco" was first used to designate the ruler of the Principality, and Honoré II, son of Hercules, was the first to bear this title. Since then, the Grimaldi dynasty has continued to rule Monaco, preserving its independence and shaping its unique history to the present day.


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Discover this 3-room apartment completely renovated with luxury finishes, located in the heart of Monaco Villas and the Rock district (place where the Palace of the Prince of Monaco is located). With an area of about 80 square meters, this elegant and comfortable apartment is perfect for families. The property is accompanied by a cellar located on the same floor, thus offering additional space to organize the house.

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