For years, Prince Rainier III of Monaco had the reputation of being a light-hearted playboy. But since his marriage to the former Grace Kelly in 1956, he had cultivated the image of being a serious. thoughtful sovereign. Following arc his opinions on a number of subjects.
The New York Sunday News (October 10, 1971)
«I am convinced that animals are more interesting to know than men. They have been a passion with me since my earliest childhood. Animals possess the inbred qualities that human begins must learn: faithfulness, loyalty, trust and the marvelous capacity for friendship».
«I love not only the sea, but everything the sea gives. With the sea, I always associate solitude, escape and adventure. Solitude in my position means the freedom to lough, sing, say anything I like without running the risk of being criticized in public. Escape means not being the Prince of Monaco for several hours or days. Adventure means the joys of facing the perils of the sea. A man is never so much a man as when he is on the dock of a boat he is commanding».
«American women are wholesome. They are nearly all honest, loyal and straight. They are what is called with certain disdain-puritans. They hate lies and hypocrisy. A married American woman will never have a lover. If she falls in love with another man, and this can happen to the most virtuous woman, she will announce this straight out, ask for a divorce and remarry. I call that honest».
His own marriage
«My marriage with Princess Grace is a complete success. When I first met her, I discovered very quickly that she was a woman of principle. Thank God, they were the same principles as mine. But even if the Princess is 100 per cent American, one must not forget that she has Irish blood flowing in her veins. Irish blood is something. Her father always ruled over the family like the chief of an Irish clan. The Princess therefore has been accustomed since her childhood to obeying a man’s orders. Of course. I’m bossy, too. When she came to Monaco, the Princess’ situation was very difficult. But I’d say the Princess has become much more Europeanized than I have become Americanized. And I think she would agree».
«I enjoy it, but enjoy is really not the word. Let’s say it has been a passion for 20 years. At the beginning when I took over from my grandfather. Prince Louis, I was young, full of ideas, projects and burning with ambition. I threw myself quickly into the routine. In reality, routine is a tragedy. I remembered when I first proposed the tunnel through which the trains pass today. I wanted to eliminate the smells, noise and danger of fire which was created by the sparks. Someone belittled my idea by saying: “Why spend money to change something that works so well?”. I went into a rage at the time. Now I’m a bit older. I’m less autocratic in my demeanor. As a result, it sometimes takes longer to get things done, but at least things are peaceful».
His own children
«I have been very lucky. I have no problems with them. I adore my children and they adore me. What more could a man want?».