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Freud’s Love Letters Reveal Jealous Fits, Cocaine Experiments

Sigmund Freud and his fiancee Martha Bernays exchanged more than 1,500 letters during their secret, four-year engagement. They fought, reconciled, described dreams, shared hopes and even compared cocaine experiences by post.

For many years, no-one outside the family knew the letters had survived. Bernays, who lived until 1951, almost destroyed them after her husband died because they were so private and intimate. Her daughters persuaded her not to. Germany’s S. Fischer Verlag is publishing them in full for the first time, in five volumes over five years. The first, covering the period from June 1882 to July 1883, was published this year.