Georg Wilhelm Friedrich Hegel (; German: [ˈɡeːɔʁk ˈvɪlhɛlm ˈfʁiːdʁɪç ˈheːɡl̩]; 27 August 1770–14 November 1831) was a German philosopher and one of the most influential figures of German idealism and 19th-century philosophy.

Born in 1770 in Stuttgart, Holy Roman Empire, during the transitional period between the Enlightenment and the Romantic movement in the Germanic regions of Europe, Hegel lived through and was influenced by the French Revolution and the Napoleonic wars. His fame rests chiefly upon (Book) Phenomenology of Spirit, The Science of Logic, his teleological account of history, and his lectures at the University of Berlin on topics from his Encyclopedia of the Philosophical Sciences.

Guided by the Delphic imperative to “know thyself,” Hegel presents free self-determination as the essence of humankind–a conclusion from his 1806–07 Phenomenology that he claims is further verified by the systematic account of the interdependence of logic, nature, and spirit in his later Encyclopedia. He asserts that the Logic at once preserves and overcomes the dualisms of the material and the mental–that is, it accounts for both the continuity and difference marking of the domains of nature and culture–as a metaphysically necessary and coherent “identity of identity and non-identity.”