Born on October 15, 1844, Nietzsche grew up in the Prussian Province of Saxony. His father pastored a Lutheran church but later died from a brain disease. Nietzsche studied theology and philology at the University of Bonn until he stopped his learning and lost his faith. While serving in the Franco-Prussian War as an orderly, Nietzsche contracted diphtheria, dysentery, and some researchers claim, syphilis as well. After the war he took the position of a professor of classical philology at the University of Basel until his declining health, near blindness, headaches, and stomach aches, made it impossible to work. Nietzsche quit teaching, began traveling, and wrote.
Nietzsche questioned not only the idea of truth, but he also criticized morality, science, culture, and Christianity, denying God's existence. Living with various illness and a severe mental condition, Nietzsche wrote Twilight of the Idols, The Antichrist, and many other works. He died on August 25, 1900, and though the cause of death is unknown, it is much debated.