PERSONIFICATION Dorothy: Don't be silly, Toto. Scarecrows don't talk.
PERSONIFICATION A figure of speech which endows animals, ideas, or inanimate objects with human traits or abilities.
The Train I like to see it lap the miles, And lick the valleys up,And stop to feed itself at tanks;And then, prodigious, step Around a pile of mountains,And, supercilious, peerIn shanties by the sides of roads;And then a quarry pare To fit its sides, and crawl between, Complaining all the whileIn horrid, hooting stanza;Then chase itself down hill And neigh like Boanerges;Then, punctual as a start its own,Stop-docile and omnipotent-A stable door. By Emily Dickinson
The Cat & The Fiddle Hey diddle, Diddle,The cat and the fiddle,The cow jumped over the moon;The little dog laughed To see such sport,And the dish ran away with the spoon. By Mother Goose
PERSONIFICATIONPractice Lets’ check to see if you can recognize personification. Decide whether the following are personification or not.
1.) Walking desks took over town. Is it personification? Yes! Desks don’t walk. Humans do. Got it?
2.) I listen to the wind. Is it personification? No! The wind is audible, but might not have human characteristics in this instance. Try another…
3.) The dog stares carefully at me. Is it personification? Nope. Dogs, like you and I, can stare. Nothing especially human about it. Get that one right? How about this one!
4.) The snake loves food. Is it personification? No, again! In this example, snakes loving food means they like to eat. Nothing more. Couple more…
5.) Moon dances around my fear. Is it personification? Absolutely. Human beings can dance. Moons cannot. Doing well?
6.) The thought lumbered around in my mind. Is it personification? Yes! Thoughts don’t generally lumber. Two more!
7.) Ronnie Johnson smiles at the fox. Is it personification? No way! Ronnie Johnson is a person. The fox has nothing to do with smiling. Last one!
8.) Wind whispers like a tree in the breeze Is it personification? Yes! Winds don’t whisper, people do. That was it!
Now it’s Your Turn • Turn to page 631 in your textbook and read “Is the Moon Tired?” • What words does Rosetti use to personify the moon? • Turn to page 648 in your textbook and read “Ode to an Artichoke” • How are the artichoke and other food in the garden personified?