Why Famous: Friedrich Nietzsche was a gifted philosopher who became the youngest ever professor at Basel University aged 24 in 1869. While in Basel Nietsche formed a friendship with the composer Richard Wagner.
He is known for numerous major works of philosophy, quite controversial at the time, like "Apollonian" and "Dionysian", "Übermensch" and "Also sprach Zarathustra". Nietzsche is particularly associated with Nihilism and associates it with the modern age.
Nietzsche's life descended into madness after 1888 and he spent the last 11 years of this life suffering mental illness generally thought to have been brought on by syphilis contracted as a young man.
- 1888-10-15 German philosopher Friedrich Nietzsche decides to write his autobiography "Ecce Homo" on his 44th birthday
- 1889-01-03 German philosopher Friedrich Nietzsche suffers a mental breakdown after supposedly witnessing a horse flogging
- 1896-11-27 "Also Sprach Zarathustra" (Thus Spake Zarathustra) by Richard Strauss, inspired by Friedrich Nietzsche's philosophical novel, debuts in Frankfurt
- "Convictions are more dangerous enemies of truth than lies."
- "Insanity in individuals is something rare - but in groups, parties, nations, and epochs, it is the rule."