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REVEALED: The Grimaldi curse of the Monaco royal family

Monaco's royal family may not be as high-profile as the Britain's, but they have long been associated with the so-called Grimaldi curse that has brought on scandal after scandal over the years.

The curse was originally addressed in a 13th-century myth where nobleman Francesco Grimaldi captured the Rock of Monaco and ordered the deaths of many under his rule by burning them at the stake.

In the myth, Francesco also ordered the death of his beloved at the stake and while she burned she allegedly declared: "Never will a Grimaldi find true happiness in marriage".

Over the course of their 700 year reign, the Grimaldi family have endured cheating, treason and tragedy - in fact there are even signs the "curse" is still going. 

Examples of the curse go back to the 1600s when Prince Louis I's French wife Catherine-Charlotte left her husband to become a mistress of the French king Louis XIV.

Many of the wives of Monaco's royals left them for other men and even those who tried to marry again encountered further infidelity.

When Prince Rainier III married Hollywood star Grace Kelly in 1956, the curse seemed to have lifted but tragedy struck when the princess suffered a stroke behind the wheel and lost control of her car in 1982.

Grace's car drove off a cliff and she later died from injuries sustained from the accident. Her husband never married again and the pair were buried next to each other after Rainier died in 2005. Rainier and Grace's three children have not been so lucky in love.

Their eldest child, Princess Caroline, has been married three times with her first wedding to Parisian banker Philippe Junot taking place when she was just 21-years-old.

Not only was her 17 years her senior, but her parents reportedly did not approve of the marriage that ended up lasting a little over two years.In 1983, Caroline tied the knot for a second time with Stefano Casiraghi, to whom she had three children, but Stefano was tragically killed in a speed-boating accident at the age of just 30.

Caroline has been married to Ernst August of Hanover since 1999, but the scandal hasn't stopped there. The prince was convicted of aggravated assault and causing grievous bodily harm after allegedly beating a German man in a nightclub and though the two are married on paper, their relationship is reportedly estranged.

Princess Stéphanie has perhaps the most colourful romantic history of the Monaco royals but married her bodyguard Daniel Ducruet in 1995.

The couple welcomed two children but divorced the following year. Stéphanie then had her third child in 1998 but did not identify the father's name on the birth certificate and only revealed his identity later on.

The royal also dated married elephant trainer Franco Knie and lived in his circus caravan with him and her three children before her second marriage to Portuguese acrobat Adans Lopez Peres whom she divorced from after a year.

"I may be a princess, but above all I'm a human being," she famously stated. Monaco's current reigning ruler Prince Albert II's love life has similarly been shrouded in scandal.

For years, Albert was one of Europe's biggest playboys and was linked to superstars including Naomi Campbell and even Kylie Minogue.

In 2011, he married South African swimming champion Charlene Wittstock but just days before the wedding, it was reported that Charlene had tried to flee Monaco after learning her fiance had fathered a third love child during their five-year relationship.

Though the wedding went ahead and the couple are married with two children, ABC News reported that "the bride was in tears throughout the ceremony".

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