George, Margrave of Brandenburg-Ansbach

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George of Brandenburg-Ansbach (German: Georg der Fromme) (4 March 1484 – 27 December 1543) was a Margrave of Brandenburg-Ansbach from the House of Hohenzollern.



Early life

He was born in Ansbach, the third of eight sons of Margrave Frederick the Elder and his wife Sophia of Poland, daughter of Casimir IV of Poland and Elisabeth of Habsburg. Through his mother, he was related to the royal court in Buda. He entered the service of his uncle, King Vladislaus II of Bohemia and Hungary, living at his court from 1506. The king received him as an adopted son, entrusted him in 1515 with the Duchy of Oppeln, and in 1516 made him member of the tutelary government instituted for Hungary, and tutor of his son Louis II of Hungary and Bohemia. In 1521 he made a business with Petar Keglević and pulled back from Hungary and Croatia, this business was at first not accepted by Ferdinand I, Holy Roman Emperor until 1559, when it was accepted also by this one, but it was in 1526 accepted by Louis II.

Territories and influence

At the court of Hungary there were two parties arrayed against each other: the Magyar party under the leadership of Zápolyas and the German party under the leadership of George of Brandenburg, whose authority was increased by the acquisition of the duchies of Ratibor and Oppeln by hereditary treaties with their respective dukes and of the territories of Oderberg, Beuthen, and Tarnowitz as pledges from the king of Bohemia, who could not redeem his debts.

By the further appropriation of the Duchy of Jägerndorf, George came into possession of all Upper Silesia. As the owner and mortgagee of these territories he prepared the way for the introduction of the Protestant Reformation, here as well as in his native Franconia. At an earlier time than any other German prince and any other member of the Hohenzollern line, even before his younger brother Albert, the Grand Master of the Teutonic Order, he turned his eyes and heart to the new faith proceeding from Wittenberg.

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