Albert, 1490–1545, German churchman, cardinal of the Roman Catholic Church. A member of the house of Brandenburg, he became (1514) archbishop of Mainz. Because Albert was underage, this appointment was uncanonical and he was required to pay a large fee for a papal dispensation. To assist Albert in raising this sum, the pope authorized an eight-year sale of indulgences. Albert authorized (1517) Johann Tetzel to preach this indulgence—occasioning Martin Luther's public protest against indulgences. A patron of Ulrich von Hutten , Albert was expected to join the Reformers, but after 1525 he actively opposed them. Later he invited the Jesuits to preach in his diocese. He was a friend of Erasmus.
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