Sigmund Freud was born on May 6, 1856, in Freiberg. His father gave him the Jewish name Schlomo and the Christian name Sigmund. Freud was partly reared by a catholic nanny, Monica Zadjic. Jakob taught him to read the family Bible, which he continued to read in Jewish primary school and later in the gymnasium. Unlike the family of his wife, Martha, Freud's family neglected religious practices but respected traditions, particularly the principal holidays of Jewish life. Freud was circumcised on May 13, 1866. Freud was confronted with the question of his Jewish identity—an affective dimension of Freud better reflected in his correspondence than in his scientific works.
"[H]ow comes it that none of the godly ever devised psychoanalysis and that one had to wait for a godless Jew?" Freud wrote to Oskar Pfister on October 9, 1918 (quoted in Grollman, 1965, p. 115).