Hegel’s Phenomenology of Spirit is a seminal work in philosophy, and its authorship is often a topic of discussion among scholars. One question that frequently arises is, “How old was Hegel when he wrote Phenomenology?” In this article, we will explore the answer to this question and shed some light on the context in which this important work was created.


Georg Wilhelm Friedrich Hegel was a German philosopher who lived from 1770 to 1831. He is widely regarded as one of the most important figures in Western philosophy, and his work has had a profound influence on subsequent thinkers. Phenomenology of Spirit, first published in 1807, is one of Hegel’s most important works.

How Old Was Hegel When He Wrote Phenomenology?

Hegel was born on August 27th, 1770. He began writing Phenomenology of Spirit in Jena in 1804 when he was thirty-four years old. The book took him six years to complete and was published when he was forty years old.

The Context of Hegel’s Life

The period during which Hegel wrote Phenomenology of Spirit was one of great intellectual ferment in Europe. The French Revolution had just occurred, and many intellectuals were grappling with the implications of this event for political theory and social organization. Additionally, there were significant advances being made in natural science at this time, particularly in the fields of chemistry and physics.

Hegel himself had been deeply influenced by Immanuel Kant’s Critique of Pure Reason and had spent many years studying the works of other philosophers such as Aristotle and Spinoza. His own philosophical system would come to be known as “Hegelianism” or “German Idealism.”

Phenomenology of Spirit had a significant impact on the development of philosophy. It is widely regarded as one of the most important works in the history of Western thought and has been praised for its depth, rigor, and insight into the human condition.

In particular, Hegel’s concept of “dialectical reasoning” has been influential in a wide range of fields, including political theory, literary criticism, and even theology. The book’s emphasis on the importance of history and culture in shaping human consciousness has also been important for many subsequent thinkers.


In conclusion, Hegel began writing Phenomenology of Spirit when he was thirty-four years old and completed it when he was forty. The book was written during a period of great intellectual ferment in Europe and has had a profound impact on subsequent philosophical thought. Its authorship by a relatively young philosopher has been seen as evidence of Hegel’s intellectual precocity and his enduring significance as a thinker.