Abraham Govaerts was the son of Elisabeth Yselstein and William Govaerts, a dealer in second-hand clothes and paintings. Govaerts was admitted as a master to the Antwerp Guild of St Luke in 1607/1608. Later he became a student of Jan Brueghel I. He became well known for his landscape paintings.
In 1609 he bought two houses on the St. Jansstraat next to his parents’ home. On February 9, 1622, he married Isabella Gillis, and they had two daughters. He trained a number of painters, including Hans Groenrijs (1617), Andries van den Bogaerde (1619 and 1620), Niclaes Aertsen, Gysbrecht van den Berch, and Frans Snyders (the last three from 1623 to 1624).