Who Was Karl Marx?

Karl Heinrich Marx, born on May 5, 1818, was a famous German philosopher, Journalist, economist, sociologist, historian, political theorist, and revolutionary. His parents were Heinrich Marx and Henriette Pressburg.

Karl Marx was one of the most influential philosophers and economists in human history. His works in economics have influenced a lot of intellectuals, political parties, labor unions, and artists.

Karl studied philosophy and law at many universities, such as the University of Bonn, the University of Berlin, and the University of Jena. Although his nationality was Prussian, he later became a stateless citizen due to his political publications.

Karl Marx was considered one of the best architects of the modern world of social science.


Karl Marx was born to Heinrich Mark and Henriette Pressburg on 5th May, 1818. Karl was born in Trier, an ancient city that was part of Prussia. Karl’s grandfather was a spiritual leader of the Jewish religion, so originally, his family hails from the Jews. However, at an early age, Karl formally converted to Christianity.

His father, Heinrich Marx, was one of the first during their time to receive education and eventually became a lawyer. As a child, Karl had a comfortable childhood as his father had a good source of income. His father even owned multiple vineyards.

Karl Marx was a great thinker and influenced many great people for his works in Philosophy and economics. He was deeply interested in the ideas of Voltaire and Immanuel Kant, who were also great philosophers.

Karl Marx’s father, Heinrich Marx, started working as an attorney to the state in the year 1815; he was later transferred to Porta Nigra, so he had to move his family to his place of work. His mother, Henriette Pressburg, was a Dutch woman from a wealthy Jewish business family.

Karl Marx was the third child out of nine children. After his brother’s death in the year 1819, he became the eldest son of the Marx family. His family converted to Christianity in the year 1824.

At a very young age, Marx was educated privately by his father. In 1830, he entered the Trier high school and did his early education. By the age of 17, Marx traveled to Bonn for his further studies as he was very interested in philosophy and literature.However, his father wanted to become a lawyer. He entered the University of Bonn in the year 1835 and studied literature and Philosophy.

In the university, Marx joined a poetry club that was monitored by the police. He also joined a drinking club known as the Trier Tavern drinking society, where they discussed a lot of ideas together. He also served as the club’s co-president and was involved in many political disputes.

Marx was a bright student in the university, but since his grades seemed to decrease later; his father had to transfer him to a better and a more serious university. So, he was sent to the University of Berlin.


Karl Marx had poor health, and he suffered from various kinds of illness. One of the main reasons for his illness was his drinking habits. Although he was a great thinker, it is said that he remained drunk almost all the time. After joining the drinking club at the University of Bonn, he began to drink more than ever which later led to many health complications.

He was affected with a very serious nervous disorder in the year 1877 which he dealt with hallucinating drugs. He was also very fond of pickled cucumbers, smoked fish, and caviar. These foods are very risky for people suffering from liver problems like Karl himself. Karl Marx was also addicted to smoking which also contributed a lot to his deteriorating health. Since he did not have much money, he smoked low-quality cigarettes.


Karl Heinrich Marx was married to Jenny Von Westphalen and had seven children. He lived with his family in London after he was considered stateless due to his political publications. As a father of seven, Karl did not have much money to support his family.

Unfortunately, four of his children died at a very early age, and only three of them could make it to adulthood. His family mostly lived in a rented house or flat since he has a low source of income and has to travel from place to place very frequently.

His works

Karl Marx’s contribution to the polity in particular and society, in general, is manifold. Being a social thinker, he was propagated numerous theories which have helped mankind understand society better. Some of his works include

  • Alienated labor
  • Women and Society
  • Marx and Religion
  • Marxism Theory


Karl Marx died in London on March 14, 1883, shortly after the demise of his wife in 1881. After the death of his wife, he remained sick for fifteen months and developed various sicknesses like pleurisy and bronchitis that later killed him. Karl was found dead peacefully in his armchair.…