Albert I (king of the Belgians)
Albert I, 1875–1934, king of the Belgians (1909–34), nephew and successor of Leopold II. He married (1900) Elizabeth, a Bavarian princess. In World War I his heroic resistance (1914) to the German invasion of Belgium greatly helped the Allied cause. Albert spent the entire war at the head of his army, and in 1918 he led the Allied offensive that recovered the Belgian coast. The king and queen did much to improve social conditions in Belgium and in the Belgian Congo. Albert's democratic and affable ways won him great regard at home and abroad. He died in a rock-climbing accident and was succeeded by his son, Leopold III. His daughter, Marie José, married the crown prince (later King Humbert II) of Italy.
See biography by E. Cammaerts (1935).