ALBERT, First Duke of Prussia, and the last Grand Master of the Teutonic Order, son of Frederick, Margrave of Ansbach and Bai reuth, and grandson of Albert Achilles, Elector of Brandenburg: b. 17 May 1490; d. 20 March 1568. He was educated under the care of Arch bishop. Hermann of Cologne. He accompanied Maximilian I in his expedition against Venice. In 1511 he was chosen by the Teutonic Knights grand master of their order. Being the son of Sophia, the sister of Sigismund, King of Poland, and descended from one of the most powerful German families, the Knights hoped by his means to be freed from the feudal superiority of Poland and placed under the protection of the empire. Being recognized by Poland he proceeded to Konigsberg and assumed the gov ernment in 1512. He refused the oath of allegiance to Poland, which the previous grand master had evaded, and prepared for resistance In 1520, after protracted negotiations, Sign round attempted to enforce submission by an invasion of the territories of the order, but the contest was without decisive result and in the following year• truce of four years was agreed to at Thorn. Albert appeared before the Im
perial Diet at Nuremberg as a German prince of the empire to solicit the aid of the other princes in his struggle against the Poles. He i failed in this object and soon after espoused the cause of the Reformation. In order to preserve his possessions from becoming a
to Poland, he, at Luther's advice, had Nod: proclaimed secular Duke of Prussia and placed himself under the sovereignty of Sigismerl He earnestly sought to promote the welfare: his duchy, established the ducal library, found-!. the University of Konigsberg in 1544 ad gathered about his person many literary re In 1527 he married Dorothea, daughter of Fred erick, King of Denmark. 'the latter years
his reign were troubled with many intngues, foreign and domestic; in 1532 he was put under the ban of the empire, but succeeded in tram' milting his succession to his son.