In order to assure a quick schooling of protestant ministers after the reformation Duke Ulrich von Württemberg founded the Protestant Collegiate in 1536, which had also an impact on the fame of the town.
Not only the intellectual and theological elite of the country were formed at the collegiate, its history is part of German and even European intellectual history. Famous theologians and philosophers like Jakob Andreä, Johannes Albrecht Bengel, Ferdinand Christian Baur, Friedrich Theodor Vischer and David Friedrich Strauss came from this collegiate, but also numerous men who showed eminent achievements in other fields like Johannes Kepler, Eduard Möricke and Wilhelm Hauff.
The time from 1788 until 1795 was a highlight in its history when Hegel, Hölderlin and Schelling studied together and even temporarily shared a room to live together. Only a couple of decades after the reformation Tübingen acquired high esteem as a stronghold of protestant orthodoxy. The chancellor of the university and theologian Jakob Andreä was the initiator and author of the "Konkordienformel" (doctrine based on Luther's reformation) to which the discordant Lutheran princes agreed on in 1577.
Beyond doubt, another highlight of Tübingen is the Collegium Illustre, inaugurated in 1594, when the intellectually generative town was in a period of economical growth. Collegium Illustre was one of the first academies for knights in the German-speaking area where modern subjects like politics, natural sciences, modern foreign languages, horseback riding, swordplay and dance were taught according to the aristocratic ideal and complementary to the humanistic educational program.
Until its temporary closure in 1628 due to the Thirty Years War, the Collegium Illustre had been the favorite academy of the protestant aristocracy at home and abroad with an enormous attraction up to Scandinavia, Poland, Hungary and the countries under Habsburg rule.