Wolfman's Dream (postcard)
The Wolf Man's Dream by Sergei Pankejeff
Sergei Pankejeff was one of Sigmund Freud’s most famous patients. The harrowing childhood nightmare that he recounted to Freud earned him the nickname ‘Wolf Man’. He made a sketch of the dream for Freud, and in later life produced several paintings of it.
In his dream, Pankejeff was lying in bed when all of a sudden the window swung open. Peering outside he saw six or seven white wolves sitting in the tree outside his bedroom, their eyes fixed on him. Terrified by their gaze, he woke up screaming.
The dream intrigued Freud, who soon discovered that it marked a turning point in Pankejeff’s childhood: prior to the dream he had been very good natured, but afterwards he became a nasty, bad-tempered little boy. A good deal of his treatment with Freud was devoted to unravelling this peculiar dream: what did it mean, and why did it bring about such a dramatic change in Pankejeff’s personality?