Přibor 117/Zámečnická ulice

Přibor 117/Zámečnická ulice: Sigmund Freud's birthplace 5/15, photo: AT
Přibor 117: Sigmund Freud's birthplace
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An inconvenient visit - Sigmund Freud's memory for house numbers
"My memory for names is not particularly good, but it is incomparably better than for figures and numbers. I may have been paying medical visits at a certain house for a year on end, and yet, if I should have to be driven there by a cab-driver, I should have difficulty in remembering the number of the house. But in this case I had taken special note of the house-number; it was ultra-clear, as if to jeer at me - for no trace remained in my recollection of the name of the pension or the street. I had forgotten all the data in the address which might have served as a starting-point for discovering the pension; and, quite against my usual habit, I had retained the number of the house, which was useless for the purpose. In consequence, I was unable to make the call. I was consoled remarkably quickly, and I devoted myself entirely to my friend. When I was back again in Vienna and standing in front of my writing desk, I knew without a moment's hesitation where it was that, in my 'absent-mindedness', I had put the card with the address on it. In my unconscious hiding of the thing the same intention had been operative as in my curiously modified act of forgetting."
[Sigmund Freud, (1898), The Psychical Mechanism of Forgetfulness. The Standard Edition of the Complete Psychological Works of Sigmund Freud, Volume III (1893-1899): Early Psycho-Analytic Publications, pp 287-297, here 296.]


Gallery of House Numbers: Exhibition