Vilma Gábor was esteemed among her listeners as an excellent storyteller; her tales and stories are documented in a few audio recordings from 1968 until around 1972. There is little biographical information about Vilma Gábor’s life. She was born shortly after 1900 in the Hungarian part of the Austro-Hungarian monarchy, which at that time also included Transylvania (today part of Romania). Her family still had contacts with relatives in Romania in 1972. During the Second World War, Vilma Gabor was deported to Auschwitz. She survived the extermination camp and returned to Hungary after the liberation. Vilma Gabor lived with her family in Budapest, Hungary until her death in the mid-1970s.

Vilma Gábor defined herself as member of the Roma group of Colara (carpet traders). The variant of Romani spoken by her displays features of both Lovari and the dialect of the Kalderash. The feature of centralized vowels such as in împêrato (»King«) is typical of Kalderash dialects and reveals the influence by the former Rumanian contact language. Another characteristic feature is the aspiration of /s/ to /h/, such as in sah pe katar nah pe (‘there was and there was not’) instead of sas pe katar nas pe. This aspiration is a salient feature in the pronunciation of Vilma Gábor.

(translation: Cech)