Founder of the popular German art history survey of the nineteenth and early twentieth centuries, Grundriss der Kunstgeschichte. Lübke's father and grandfather were hosiery merchants. Denied art training by his father, Lübke entered a Catholic school at 21. The cruelty of the school caused him unhappiness. Lübke next studied philology at Bonn in 1845. The teaching of Gottfried Kinkel there inspired him in art history.