Albrecht of Brandenburg monument

  O. Kanta     more than a year ago
Born in 1490 of noble stock, Albrecht Hohenzollern was elected Grand Master of the Teutonic Order in 1511 due largely to blood ties with King Zygmunt I of Poland, with whom the Order had a major territorial dispute over its eastern lands. He turned out to be a very astute leader but in 1525, having carefully embraced the protestant teachings of Martin Luther, betrayed the Order by converting its territory into the secular Duchy of Prussia, a hereditary and protected fiefdom of Poland.

Although he is often referred to as the last Grand Master of the Teutonic Order, this isn't strictly true as the Order removed itself to Mergentheim in the south of Germany under new leadership. He is nevertheless regarded as being the father of Prussia and a key advocate of secular education, having founded the famous Albertina University just behind Königsberg Cathedral in 1544. Upon his death in 1568, his body was entombed in Königsberg Cathedral.

The bronze statue, dating from 1891, was originally situated in Königsberg Castle but was lost in the immediate post-war period. It was eventually found and, after restoration work, was re-unveiled opposite Kant's Tomb, between the north-eastern corner of the cathedral and the original site of the Albertina prior to WW2, in 2005. There is also a statue of Albrecht at Malbork Castle, the traditional seat of the Teutonic Knights, in Poland.


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