Daniel Paul Schreber was born in 1842 to an upper-class family in Leipzig. His father was a physician who was famous in Germany for his work in health and education. After finishing law school, the younger Schreber entered the service of the Saxon Ministry of Justice, where his career steadily advanced. At the age of 42, he ran for a place in the Reichstag but was overwhelmingly defeated. Shortly thereafter, he developed multiple depressive symptoms and admitted himself voluntarily to a psychiatric hospital run by Dr. Paul Flechsig, whom he later regarded as his persecutor. After a 6-month hospital stay and a convalescence, Schreber resumed his duties at court. No one reported psychotic symptoms during his illness.