Adalbert of Bremen

c.1000-1072. Archbishop of Bremen from 1045. Of noble birth, able and ambitious, Adalbert was influential during the reign of Henry III. He consecrated bishops for the Orkneys and Iceland, sent a missionary to the Lapps, and divided the Slavic diocese of Oldenburg into three. Made papal vicar and legate of the Nordic nations in 1053, he attempted to create a patriarchate for the north, in a vain attempt to counter the desire of the church in Denmark for independence from Hamburg. After the death of Henry III in 1056, Adalbert had to face strong opposition from the Saxon dukes, and although he held a dominating position during the minority of Henry IV he was banished from court (1066-69) and never regained his former influence. Pagan Wends ravaged the Christian north during Adalbert's closing years, and their destruction of Hamburg prevented his being buried there.