Gouvernement Princier de Monaco
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Monegasque language

In addition to French, which is the official language, in Monaco there is “a lenga d'i nostri avi”, the language of our ancestors. This language has its roots in Genoese, but has evolved with time in accordance with the influence of neighbouring tongues.

At the same time as this natural evolution was taking place, a dialect appeared in the 1860s as a result of the demographic expansion which was caused by the founding of Monte-Carlo. The newcomers who came from valleys around Nice, Italy, Piedmont and Liguria each brought their own dialect. United around Monaco’s ancestral language, with which these dialects had a lot in common, each dialect has enriched one common language, which has become a real “patois” which unifies and identifies Monaco.

Eager to preserve their language, in 1924 some Monaco nationals founded what would become the National Committee for Monegasque Traditions and begun the task of putting to paper a language which was then only strictly oral, devoid of grammar or literature.