The author asks the question how the Humboldtian idea of university came to existence. This idea would not be thinkable without philosophical reflections of Wolff, Schelling, Fichte and Schleiermacher, without a cult of antiquity, which was invented largely by Winckelmann, as well as without the notion of education in the German meaning of 'Bildung'. The decisive moment was also the crash of Prussian state after loosing the battle with Napoleon's army in Jena and Auerstedt. This defeat mobilized many Prussians to reflect on how to reform the state so that it would not disappear completely from the map of Europe. The result of this reflection was, among others, the creation of the modern university.