Lesson #299: The Monaco Symphony Myth

Full disclosure: I thought I had posted this, but apparently, I just saved it as a draft. I’ve added it to the date it was meant to be published. 

I randomly came across an interesting bit of trivia that’s floating around the interwebs that claims that Monaco’s national orchestra is larger than its army. Now, that seems like it could be a reasonable bit of information because Monaco isn’t exactly a big place and they have little need for a standing army. And an orchestra is, by necessity, a pretty big endeavour.

It turns out that while, at one time, it was true that there were more people in the symphony than in the army*, that is no longer the case. At present, there are 98 members of the Monte-Carlo Philharmonic. Between le Corps des Sapeurs-Pompiers, which is made up of 142 people and la Compagnie des Carabiniers de Prince, which is made up of 119, the military of Monaco consists of 261 members.

Do your research, interwebs!

*There is a copy of the newspaper that reported this in Google News. It’s an Australian paper out of Melbourne called The Age,and the article is found on page 22 of the March 7, 1983 edition. At the time, there were 80 men in the army and 85 in the symphony. The full article can be read here.

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