Amalia Nathansohn was born in Brody, then part of Galicia, now a town of 24,000 people in Ukraine, in 1835. Her family then moved to Odessa, before settling in Vienna. When Amalia was nineteen, her family decided she would marry to Jacob Freud, a merchant from the Moravian town of Freiberg (now Prybor in the Czech Republic).
Jacob was forty years old, already a father of two, and not wealthy. Amalia soon found herself living in poverty in a rented room, above the blacksmith’s workshop, in Freiberg, many days of travel from her family. It’s hard to believe this is a life she would have chosen. It is likely she felt lonely and desperate.
Amalia’s grandson, Martin, Sigmund Freud’s son, described her as a strong-willed, difficult woman, and unreconstructed Galician who was a tornado. Martin’s account suggests that Amelia not only had little control over her external existence, but her internal life was barren as well. This could explain why she was so thrilled by the arrival of her first born, Sigmund. Her “golden Sigi” would have brought light to her bleak existence.
Maybe Axl, Slash and the boys, best capture Amalia’s excitement at Sigmund’s birth.