Dooyeweerd loved art and music and was an accomplished pianist, he enjoyed detective stories and was a supporter of
He has been described as one of the foremost philosophers of the
G.E. Langemeijer, attorney general of the
Giorgio Delvecchio, an Italian neo-Kantian philosopher, viewed Dooyeweerd as ‘the most profound, innovative, and penetrating philosopher since Kant’. 
More recently philosopher Alvin Plantinga stated that “Dooyeweerd's work was comprehensive, insightful, profound, courageous, and quite properly influential.” 
Dooyeweerd was born on
Dooyeweerd’s father was greatly influenced by Abraham Kuyper and Dooyeweerd, who became a Christian at a young age, was immersed in kuyperian thought and neo-calvinism. He would have heard Kuyper’s newspaper articles read aloud at home and he attended a Christian school whose headmaster Dr J. Woltjer was an associate of Kuyper.
In 1912 he attended the Free University (Vrije Univeriteit, VU) in
He then took up the post of an assistant tax collector in
During this time, he studied independently legal philosophy. He found that there was much conflict between the different approaches to legal philosophy and this made him convinced that there was a need for a ‘genuinely Christian and biblically based insight and foundation’. 
Dooyeweerd began to correspond with his brother in law D. H. Th Vollenhoven – Vollenhoven, also a graduate of the VU, had married Dooyeweerd’s sister in 1918. In these correspondences Dooyeweerd expressed a desire to ‘work out the philosophical foundations of science and of developing a theistic position, along Calvinist lines’. 
In May 1921 Vollenhoven became a pastor in
In October 1922 the newly founded research institute of the Ant-Revolutionary Party, a party associated with Kuyper, appointed the 27-year-old Dooyeweerd the first director. This gave Dooyeweerd the time and opportunity to develop his philosophical ideas.  He married on Jantiena Wilhelmina Fernhout on 19th September1924.
It was during this time that he developed the idea of the religious root of theoretical thought – the idea that all the sciences are dependent on pre-theoretical presuppositions.
He worked for the ‘Kuyper Institute’, as it was known, for four years. He then accepted an offer to become professor of law at the VU, a position he held for 40 years until his retirement in 1965 at 70.
His brief at the VU was to teach ‘Introduction to the Science of Law’, the ‘History of traditional Dutch law’ and ‘Jurisprudence’. He replaced the ‘Introduction’ with an ‘Encyclopaedia of Legal Science’.
It was at the VU that Dooyeweerd completed his De Wijsbegeerte der Wetsidee (Amsterdam: 1935-36). This was translated into English in 1953 as The New Critique of Theoretical Thought. This translation contained extensive revisions and additions. His next planned project was Reformation and Scholasticism in Philosophy  and then the Encyclopaedia of Legal Science.  He was not able to complete these fully during his lifetime.
He founded and was editor in chief (1936-1976) of the journal Philosophia Reformata.
After the Second World War he travelled extensively to
During 1945 to 1948He wrote a series of articles in the weekly Nieuw Nederland these formed the basis for his book Roots of Western Culture (1979).
In 1948 he was inducted into the
Dooyeweerd was a prolific author and wrote around 200 articles and books. The last article he wrote was for Philosophia Reformata in 1975.
Dooyeweerd’s son had this to say of him:
Dooyeweerd was a gifted man but in ways of a very down-to-earth person with his feet on the ground. We in the family loved him dearly and are, we think justifiably, proud of him. We remember him as someone who was humble before his God and always strove to be in his service. In the days just before his death I personally witnessed how he struggled greatly with the fact that in his own eyes he had not done all that he seemingly felt God had called him to do.
1. President of the `Humanist League' in The Netherlands and professor of philosophy at the Technical University of Delft. Cited in Witte Jr.
2. October 6, 1964. On the occasion of Dooyeweerd’s 70th birthday. Cited in Witte Jr.
3. Cited in Witte Jr.
4. In ‘Christian philosophy at the end of the twentieth century’.
5. Dooyeweerd Jr p. 107.
6. Henderson p. 27.
7. According to Witte Jr: “His work in these four years culminated in five major articles, including a fifteen-part tract ‘In the Struggle for a Christian Politics’ [Herman Dooyeweerd, "In den strijd om een Christelijke Staatkunde. Proeve van een fundeering der Calvinistische levens- en wereldbeschouwing in hare Wetsidee," I Antirevolutionaire Staatkunde (henceforth A.R.S.) 7-25 62- 79, 104-118, 161-173, 189-200, 228-244, 309-324, 433-460, 489-504, 528- 542 581-598, 617-634, (1924-5); 2 A.R.S. 244-65, 425-445 (1926). A.R.S. was the monthly journal of the Dr. Abraham Kuyper Foundation, which Dooyeweerd edited for several years. This work will appear as volume B5 of the Collected Works of Dooyeweerd.] and an important monograph ‘Calvinism and Natural Law’ (contained in volume B1 of the Collected Works of Dooyeweerd).”
8. The three volume work has now recently been published by Edwin Mellen Press as A5, A6 and A7 of the Collected Works of Herman Dooyeweerd series.
9. The first volume of this has now been published (translated by Robert D. Knudsen) by Edwin Mellen as A8. A9-11 will appear shortly.
Witte Jr., John, ‘Introduction’ in A Christian Theory of Social Institutions, by Herman Dooyeweerd, trans. Magnus Verbrugge. (Paideia Press: Ontario, 1986)
Herman Dooyeweerd Jr, ‘Herman Dooyeweerd – a biographical sketch’ in Herman Dooyeweerd Christian Philosophy and the Meaning of History (Edwin Mellen Press: Lewsiton,1996).
R. D. Henderson Illuminating Law: The Construction of Herman Dooyeweerd’s Philosophy 1918-1928 (Vrije Uiversitet:
Herman Dooyeweerd ‘The Last Interview of Dooyeweerd’ in J.M. van Dunné, P. Boeles and A.J. Heerma van Voss (eds): Acht civilisten in burger (Zwolle: W.E.J. Tjeenk Willink, 1977). (Translated for study purposes by Dr. J. Glenn Friesen)
H. Evan Runner Dooyeweerd’s passing and appreciation The Banner 1977