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Prince Albert II in Mayenne, land of his ancestors

Prince Albert II of Monaco visiting Mayenne © Prince’s Palace of Monaco
Prince Albert II of Monaco visiting Mayenne © Prince’s Palace of Monaco

Prince Albert II was in Mayenne, in the Pays de la Loire, on Sunday 5 and Monday 6 May on one of the trips he regularly makes to places that have a historical link to his family.

The «Grimaldi Historical Sites of Monaco» association linked to Mayenne, a French town in the West of France, received an unprecedented visit by Prince Albert II. As announced several weeks ago, the visit to Mayenne was a first for the Sovereign.

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Jean-Pierre Le Socornet, Mayor of Mayenne, explained the nature of the link to Monaco Info: “We are certainly honoured by Prince Albert II of Monaco’s visit, because it is a reminder of a historical fact and the ties that exist between the Duke of Mayenne and the Prince of Monaco. One of Mazarin’s female descendants married the future Prince of Monaco, and the succession of the status as Duke of Mayenne was part of the dowry.”

In 1777, Louise d’Aumont married Honoré Grimaldi. The heiress of Cardinal Mazarin became Duchess of Mayenne on the death of her mother in 1781, while Grimaldi became Prince of Monaco under the Treaty of Paris in 1814. Through their marriage, the Duchy of Mayenne and the Principality of Monaco are united under the same crown.

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Prince Albert II is their seventh generation direct descendant, and bears the honorary title of Duke of Mayenne.

The Sovereign began his visit with the inauguration of the Grimaldi Historical Sites of Monaco sign, with Jean-Pierre Le Scornet, Mayor of Mayenne, and Olivier Richefou, President of the Departmental Council in attendance.

Prince Albert II and the mayor then visited the Château de Mayenne and its Museum, before explaining the ties between the two families to the crowd.

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At day’s end, the Sovereign attended a piano competition, where he presented the “Prince Albert II” Prize to pianist Mikhail Kambarov before attending a recital by the prizewinners.

The following day, the Prince continued his tour of the town, meeting weaving manufacturers at the Toiles de Mayenne before going to Laval for the inauguration of an exhibition named “Le duché de Mayenne au temps des Mazarin et Grimaldi” (The Duchy of Mayenne in the time of the Mazarin and Grimaldi families). It explains the special link between the North Mayenne fiefdom and the Grimaldi Family.

The exhibition will run until September 27, 2024, at the departmental archives.

Prince Albert II’s visit in pictures

© Prince’s Palace of Monaco