Albert of Brandenburg

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Albert of Brandenburg, 1490–1568, grand master of the Teutonic Knights (1511–25), first duke of Prussia (1525–68); grandson of Elector Albert Achilles of Brandenburg. In 1525 he became a Protestant, and on the advice of Martin Luther he secularized the dominions of the Teutonic Knights and became duke of the hereditary duchy of Prussia. The knights' lands had been held as a fief from the king of Poland, and the new duchy remained under Polish suzerainty. On the extinction of Albert's line (1618), Prussia passed to the senior line of Brandenburg, and in 1701 it was made a kingdom.

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Brandenburg State in ne Germany; the capital is Potsdam. The region formed the nucleus of the kingdom of Prussia. The March of Brandenburg was founded in 1134 by Albert I (the Bear). It came under the rule of the Hohenzollerns in 1411, and in 1417 Frederick I became the first Elector of Brandenburg. Frederick II became the first King of Prussia in 1701. Pop. (1999) 2,601,207.