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Launch of the commemorations of the centenary of the death of Prince Albert I of Monaco

On Monday 19 October at the Lycée Albert I of Monaco, H.S.H. Prince Albert II attended the launch of the commemorations of the centenary of the death of Prince Albert I of Monaco.

The event began with the showing of the centenary trailer, produced by the Audiovisual Institute of Monaco for the Committee.
Following this, H.E. Mr Robert Fillon, President of the Prince Albert I Commemoration Committees, unveiled the upcoming highlights of the Prince Albert I commemorations, which will mark the next two years from the end of 2020 to the end of 2022.

The Committee's website was also presented, which will be gradually enriched to become a real documentary portal, as well as social networks, in particular the Facebook page, which you are familiar with.
The evening then continued with a tribute to the writer and philosopher Armand Lunel (1892-1977), in the same establishment where he taught from 1920 to 1953.
A former pupil of the Ecole Normale Supérieure, graduate in philosophy, appointed professor of philosophy at the Lycée de Monaco by Prince Albert I exactly one hundred years ago, Armand Lunel was awarded the first Renaudot prize in 1926 for his novel Nicolo-Peccavi or the Dreyfus Affair in Carpentras. He was a symbolic figure in the fate of the Monegasque Jewish community during the Second World War.

The Monegasque National Education system wished to pay tribute to him for his personality and his work, by naming the Lycée Albert I's multi-purpose hall after him. 

H.S.H. Prince Albert II unveiled a commemorative plaque in the presence of representatives of his family, Mssra Daniel and David Jessula and Mr Jean-Yves Giraudon, President of the PEN-Club, an association founded in 1968 by Armand Lunel. Mr Stéphane Lamotte, Associate Professor at the Lycée Albert I and Doctor of History, Secretary of the Commemoration Committees, author of a study on Lunel and Monaco published in the Annales Monégasques in 2017, spoke about his career in the Principality.

Finally, a historical conference on the subject of the Dreyfus Affair provided a link between the different proceedings of the evening and brought a historical dimension to the event.

The conference was given by Mr Vincent Duclert, historian and academic (researcher at EHESS, associate professor at Sciences-Po), specialist in the Dreyfus affair, to which he devoted his doctoral thesis on the involvement of scholars. 
Mr Duclert presented the path of Prince Albert I's thinking - his conviction of innocence in the face of the State’s reasoning and the course of his commitment. He also showed the importance of Dreyfus solidarity and the role of women in the resolution of the case. The demonstration was supported by unpublished archives.

Let us recall the chronology of Prince Albert I's Dreyfus engagement:
As early as 1897, in his correspondence with his friend Flore Singer, a Parisian salon figure, Prince Albert I displayed Dreyfus sympathy from the very beginning of the Affair; in an interview, he tried, without success, to convince President Félix Faure of Dreyfus' innocence. In February 1898, he reacted to Zola's "I accuse" by writing to him: "Your declaration contains the most beautiful feelings a soul can express, it honours humanity, it adds a ray to the glory of France. For all those who admire independence and sincerity in patriotism, you grow greater than the fame of your talent". On 3 July 1899, the Prince had a letter, dated 27 June, from Kiel to Madame Lucie Dreyfus, published in Le Figaro and wrote to the captain. This public stance aroused passionate reactions from both sides. This commitment testifies to Prince Albert I's humanism, which considered that justice for Dreyfus could only help improve Franco-German relations.

Launch of the commemorations of the centenary of the death of Prince Albert I of Monaco