Talk:Harold Abrahams

From Wikipedia, the free encyclopedia
Jump to: navigation, search


Was Abrahams married? Did he have children? —Preceding unsigned comment added by Jaedglass (talkcontribs) 02:16, August 27, 2007 (UTC)

It is mentioned (in the end credits to Chariots of Fire) that Harold Abrahams did marry Sybil. His daughter is shown in the article accompanying this article. (talk) 14:41, 18 May 2008 (UTC)—Preceding unsigned comment added by (talk) 14:39, 18 May 2008 (UTC)

  • Harold married, but his wife is slightly misidentified in the movie Chariots of Fire. His wife was Sybil Evers, not Sybil Gordon. Evers was not a diva like Gordon and did not sing Yum-Yum. I've added his wife's info into the article; the adopted daughter is already mentioned therein. He also had an adopted son. Softlavender (talk) 14:24, 30 November 2008 (UTC)

Opening paragraph[edit]

I have removed the term "Jewish" from the opening paragraph, which formerly read "Jewish British". This conforms with Wikipedia:Manual of Style (biographies):

Nationality (In the normal case this will mean the country of which the person is a citizen or national, or was a citizen when the person became notable. Ethnicity should generally not be emphasized in the opening unless it is relevant to the subject's notability.)

His Jewishness is mentioned throughout the article - indeed, in the line following the opening paragraph.--Kitty Davis 07:39, 9 September 2007 (UTC)

Legal Career[edit]

I think I've heard that Abrahams became quite a distinguished lawywer. If that's the case, please could someone add it to the article?Figeac (talk) 08:49, 3 July 2012 (UTC)

Not a singer?[edit]

I thought I read somewhere that Abrahams was not in fact an amateur singer who participated in G&S productions at university. I think I read that that was a bit of artistic license in Chariots of Fire. Anyone have a link to confirm this? Thanks. Softlavender (talk) 08:13, 27 July 2009 (UTC)

Never mind -- Hugh Hudson says in his commentary to the 2005 DVD of Chariots of Fire that Abrahams was indeed a great fan of, and heavily involved in, Gilbert & Sullivan. Softlavender (talk) 02:01, 23 October 2009 (UTC)

Son's name?[edit]

Anyone have knowledge (and verification of) Abrahams' son's name? Softlavender (talk) 01:51, 11 November 2009 (UTC)

Abrahams was cheated?[edit]

From Thai Wikipedia article, th:โอลิมปิกฤดูร้อน 1924, since that page created, page creator was wrote about Harold Abrahams was used "Easton syrup" and he will disqualified (or not win medals) if found he "doping" (failed drug test or other reasons to found he was doping). --Love Krittaya (talk) 06:39, 12 February 2010 (UTC)

Hmm. Thanks for bringing this up. A Google search reveals an article from the Atlanta Journal-Constitution (obviously written around the time the Olympics were being held in Atlanta), which I had to pay to view. Here are its contents (which are copyrighted and must be cited if used in this or any article [note the glitch in the first paragraph -- I'm posting it exactly as it appears online]): /article (questionable)

Softlavender (talk) 23:14, 22 May 2010 (UTC)

100 yds Sprint pre Paris Olympics[edit]

I would check up about the location and timing of the sprint mentioned in this article. A location is not given. A report in Shropshire Star newspaper (Wednesday 11 July 2012) recalls Abrahams "Weeks before the Paris Olympics", won gold in the 100 yd sprint at the Midland Area AAA Championship at St George's Recreation Ground in what is now Telford, Shropshire. The report mentions that a memorial to Abrahams is to be built in Telford to commemorate the event, seen as a local part in his Olympic success. I wonder if that may have been the same event.Cloptonson (talk) 22:07, 11 July 2012 (UTC) Under 'Honours' section I have reported the announcement of the intended memorial, cited to local newspaper.Cloptonson (talk) 05:34, 12 July 2012 (UTC) I have found no mention of the event in Shropshire newspaper "The Shrewsbury Chronicle", which then had county-wide coverage.Cloptonson (talk) 14:24, 14 July 2012 (UTC)

Check the biography book mentioned below. Softlavender (talk) 22:47, 9 August 2012 (UTC)
I have not read this book but I have updated the story by reporting that the memorial, a plaque, has been unveiled by Sue Pottle at the St George's club house, cited to Shropshire Star. Cloptonson (talk) 20:32, 3 November 2014 (UTC)

New biography book[edit]

Running with Fire: The True Story of Harold Abrahams (2011), by Mark Ryan, is a wonderful resource. It's available on Kindle and paperback: [1] (U.S.); [2] (UK). It also dispels several rumors and inaccuracies about Harold which have arisen over the years (some of which are unfortunately still in this Wikipedia article). Softlavender (talk) 22:46, 9 August 2012 (UTC)


See: Is there anything wrong with these learned articles? The learned dispute should be mentioned in the main article. --Alexander Tendler (talk) 12:10, 6 June 2014 (UTC)

that cite is not to the article -- it's a correction to the article that says a relative with detailed info on Abrahams denies he ever converted. I read the article by Cashmore and do not believe he makes a good case. Cashmore mentions the supposed conversion in one sentence citing an essay by Ed Carter, which had one sentence that in turn references a newspaper story in a local California newspaper that appeared some years after Abrahams died. Not looking very good. Martin Gilbert a leading British historian of the Jews says "In his later years he was attracted to Catholicism, which he considered to be the 'fulfilment' of Judaism, but refused to be converted because of ...Catholic anti-Semitism. 'I want to be among those who will be persecuted,' he said" The Jews in the twentieth century p 142 at That is a strong statement from an expert (Cashmore is a commentator on sports & is not an expert on Abrahams). Rjensen (talk) 13:00, 6 June 2014 (UTC)
There are different versions of the conversion issue and some authors are more authoritative. According to your own citation, Abrahams became interested in Catholicism at some time, without converting. --Alexander Tendler (talk) 15:23, 6 June 2014 (UTC)
Yes I agree-- Gilbert has much rich detail and Gilbert is a leading expert (on Jews & on that era in Britain) so he is the more reliable source. I read Cashmore: he devoted one sentence to the topic & relied on an online source Ed Carter. I read Carter & he in turn only had one sentence on the topic & Carter relied on a story in a local California newspaper (I have not seen the newspaper item), so I consider Cashmore to be much less reliable than Gilbert's book. Furthermore Abraham's nephew weighed in denying any conversion. Rjensen (talk) 00:08, 7 June 2014 (UTC)
There is no dispute. It's a case of a false internet rumor becoming so widespread (due to Wikipedia and Wikipedia mirrors repeating it until the authoritative and exhaustively researched Harold Abrahams' biography -- Running with Fire by Mark Ryan -- was published in 2011/2012) to the point that educated people actually erroneously believed it until Mark Ryan researched the matter thoroughly and set the record straight. The fact of the matter is that Harold led a secular life after university. Softlavender (talk) 20:47, 6 June 2014 (UTC)