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Pines, N. (1972). Hilda Abraham (1906-1971). Int. J. Psycho-Anal., 53:331-331.

(1972). International Journal of Psycho-Analysis, 53:331-331

Hilda Abraham (1906-1971)

Nora Pines

Hilda Abraham was born in Zurich in 1906 where her father Karl Abraham discovered his early interest in psychoanalysis, so that throughout her life psychoanalysis was an integral part of it and her devotion to her family and to her chosen work ran side by side.

After Karl Abraham's return to Berlin, his psychiatric practice rapidly expanded, but in spite of this Hilda's earliest memories were of a warm and loving family life, where her father steadily maintained close contact with his children and was deeply interested in them. As the analytical circle widened, the milieu in which she grew to maturity was one in which she experienced and saw generosity and loyal friendship between her father and his professional colleagues, and this tradition she in her turn followed, as her colleagues in London so well knew. Her house was always open with warm hospitality and her professional help and support were always available to her friends, whenever she was needed, without thought for herself.

She was a most devoted daughter, and with the aid of her brother, who survives her, cared for her mother selflessly from the difficult time after Karl Abraham's premature death, when Hilda herself had just left school until her mother's own death at the age of 91.

Her devotion to her father could be seen by all of us in her daily work, where she gave as generously as he did, to her patients and to her younger colleagues in her unselfish support and encouragement. She extended his wisdom and experience throughout the English-speaking world by translating his publications, the collected papers, his correspondence with Freud, and lately in an as yet unpublished biography which brings him so vividly to life, and in which her own early experiences are recalled.

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