1911 Encyclopædia Britannica/Albert III. (duke of Saxony)

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ALBERT III. (1443-1500), duke of Saxony, surnamed ANIMOSUS or THE COURAGEOUS, younger son of Frederick II., the Mild, elector and duke of Saxony, was born on the 27th of January 1443, and after escaping from the hands of Kunz von Kaufungen, who had abducted him together with his brother Ernest, passed some time at the court of the emperor Frederick III. in Vienna. In 1464 he married Zedena, or Sidonia, daughter of George Podebrad, king of Bohemia, but failed to obtain the Bohemian Crown on the death of George in 1471. After the death of the elector Frederick in 1464, Albert and Ernest ruled their lands together, but in 1485 a division was made by the treaty of Leipzig, and Albert received Meissen, together,with some adjoining districts, and founded the Albertine branch of the family of Wettin. Regarded as a capable soldier by the emperor, Albert, in 1475, took a prominent part in the campaign against Charles the Bold, duke of Burgundy, and in 1487 led an expedition against Matthias Corvinus, king of Hungary, which failed owing to lack of support on the part of the emperor. In 1488 he marched with the imperial forces to free the Roman king Maximilian from his imprisonment at Bruges, and when, in 1489, the king returned to Germany, Albert was left as his representative to prosecute the war against the rebels. He was successful in restoring the authority of Maximilian in Holland, Flanders and Brabant, but failed to obtain any repayment of the large sums of money which he had spent in these campaigns. His services were rewarded in 1498 when Maximilian bestowed upon him the title of hereditary governor (potestat) of Friesland, but he had to make good his claim by force of arms. He had to a great extent succeeded, and was paying a visit to Saxony, when he was recalled by news of a fresh rising. Groningen was captured, but soon afterwards the duke died at Emden, on the 12th of September 1500. He was buried at Meissen. Albert, who was a man of great strength and considerable skill in feats of arms, delighted in tournaments and knightly exercises. His loyalty to the emperor Frederick, and the expenses incurred in this connexion, aroused some irritation among his subjects, but his rule was a period of prosperity in Saxony.

See F. A. von Langenn, Herzog Albrecht der Beherzte, Stammvater des koniglichen Hauses Sachsen (Leipzig, 1838); O. Sperling, Herzog Albrecht der Beherzte von Sachsen als Gubernator Frieslands (Leipzig, 1892).