Albert of Brandenburg
Albert Of Brandenburg, grand-master of the Teutonic Order, took monastic vows at Mergentheim, where he received the record of his nomination; and entered at Konigsberg Nov. 22, 1512. Albert having refused to render homage to Poland, king Sigismund declared war against him Dec. 28, 1519. This lasted until 1521, and was terminated by the intervention of the emperor and the king of Hungary, who secured a truce of four years. In 1521 he accorded to Walter of Plettenberg, provincial master of the Teutonic knights in Livonia, the right to exercise sovereignty in his own name. In 1524 Albert took the oath of loyalty to the empire in the Diet of Nuremberg, and held to the rank of the ecclesiastical princes after the archbishops and before all the bishops of the empire. In 1525 the treaty with Poland expired, and it was desired to enter upon the conferences at Presburg; but this was useless. The grand-master, already preceded by the doctrines of Luther, sent an embassy to Cracow, where he finally went himself; and concluded, April 9, a treaty with his uncle, the king, by which he was recognised hereditary duke of all the territory possessed by the order in Prussia, with the stipulation that his brothers and their successors should receive investiture by the king. This was immediately put into execution. Albert, strengthened by a large number of Poles, took possession of the duchy, quitted the habit of the order, and expelled the Catholics. Thus was the Teutonic Order overthrown in Prussia, by the action of its grand-master. He died near the middle of the 16th century. See Hoefer, Nouv. Biog. Generale, s.v.