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But Hitler showed only intermittent interest in Eva and she made two suicide attempts in August 1932 and in May 1935.

After the second attempt Hitler was so impressed that he set her up in a house near his own apartment and invited her to move into the Berghof at Berchtesgaden. Reserved, indifferent to politics and keeping her distance from most of Hitler's intimates, Eva Braun led a completely isolated life in the Führer's Alpine retreat and later in Berlin.

Hitler's closest friend, Albert Speer, later told:

"Hitler kept his Eva like a puppet in a doll's house. She was a part of the ambience, like the canary cage, the rubber tree ... and the kitschy wooden clocks."

The role played by Eva Braun was one of the most successfully guarded secrets of the Third Reich. She was carefully kept out of the public eye for all those years and few Germans even knew of her existence.

Even the Führer's closest associates were not certain of the exact nature of their relationship, since Hitler preferred to avoid suggestions of intimacy and was never wholly relaxed in her company.

Hitler's servant for many years, Heinz Linge, later recalled:

"Hitler and Eva occasionally stayed on alone in his study talking for a short while before retiring. On those occasions Eva, generally wearing only a dressing gown, would have some wine and Hitler a cup of tea ... For those of us who knew of Hitler's relationship with Eva from personal observation the motto was: see nothing, hear nothing, say nothing."

 

 

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