Julius's background was a mixture of French and German and throughout his life, it is evident that he found both attractive.
Julius Plücker was born on June 18, 1801, at Elberfeld (now part of Wuppertal), Duchy of Berg. Plücker's family was descended from merchants who had originally lived in Aachen but had settled in Elberfeld during the Reformation in the 16th Century. His father, Johann Peter Plücker, was a businessman in Elberfeld although he later retired to Dusseldorf. Julius's mother was Johanna Maria Lüttringhausen, a daughter of Johannes Lüttringhausen. Peter and Johanna Plücker had both been born in Elberfeld and they married in that town on 21 September 1797. They had three children: Julius Plücker, the subject of this biography, Moritz Rudolf Plücker and Emil Plücker (died 1871).