The Grimaldi family curse: Happily-ever-after denied

The Grimaldi family curse: Happily-ever-after denied

Royal weddings are often the stuff of fairytales, so it seems fitting that a curse would somehow be involved. A real-life curse may be true for one Royal family. According to legend, The Grimaldi Royal Family of Monaco is cursed and will never have a true happily-ever-after.

How the curse came to be is a bit of a mystery. One report of a 13th-century legend tells the tale of a Flemish woman who was raped by Prince Rainier I. In retaliation, she cursed the House, saying that “never will a Grimaldi find true happiness in marriage”.

Another tale says that a witch being burnt at the stake said those immortal words preventing a true happily-ever-after.

Over the course of the family’s 700-year-long rule, they have experienced much heartbreak and tragedy. Here are just a few of the ways the family has been unlucky in love:

Grace Kelly’s death

The Grimaldi family rose to international fame in 1952 when Prince Rainier III married Oscar-winning actress Grace Kelly. However, their marriage was not the stuff of fairytales. Kelly reportedly struggled with the intense demand and expectation that comes with being a royal.

In 1982, the superstar actress tragically died in a car accident at the age of 52. She had reportedly suffered a stroke while driving with her daughter Stephanie. Dr. Jean Chatelain, chief surgeon at the hospital where she was treated, says she might have survived had she been at home and not in the car.

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Princess Caroline

Grace Kelly and Prince Renier’s eldest daughter Caroline had a short-lived marriage to French banker Philippe Junot, and also lost her second husband, Stefano Casiraghi, in a tragic accident. Casiraghi, a professional speedboat racer, died in a powerboat crash off the coast of Monaco in 1990 while he was competing in his last race before retiring from the sport. Only weeks earlier, the racer had survived an incident in which his boat exploded.

Her third marriage to Prince Ernst August V of Hanover has had its ups and downs. The Prince is said to have a terrible temper and has faced assault charges in the past. The couple are now estranged.

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Princess Stephanie

Grace Kelly’s other daughter, Princess Stephanie was long considered the wild child of the family and brought even more scandal when she married her bodyguard, Daniel Ducruet after having children with him. The relationship ended when his affair with Miss Topless Belgium went public. She was also briefly married to a Portuguese acrobat 10 years her junior.

Prince Albert

Grace Kelly’s son Prince Albert II and wife Charlene Wittstock have also reportedly been unlucky in love. The Prince fathered two illegitimate children, one with a flight attendant from Togo and another with a US estate agent before he married South African swimmer Charlene Wittstock. Reports that he fathered a third love child while he was in a relationship with Wittstock were highly publicised in the lead up to their 2011 wedding.

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Whether it’s the result of a curse or sheer bad luck, one thing is for sure. The House of Grimaldi has been anything but lucky in love.

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