Personification is a figure of speech, a poetic device in which human attributes are given to animals, non-living things or ideas. The objects speak/behave like humans, with human emotions in such cases.
Uses of personification:
- The cat asked the mouse for a dinner treat.
- The dog asked his master to let him inside.
- Love is blind.
- His anger oozed out in his words.
Personifying non-living things:
- The popcorn popped out of the bowl immediately in the oven.
- The sun shined and smiled upon us, early in the morning.
- When human qualities are given to objects, the writer/poet can convey the meaning easily.
- The understanding of the idea is made easier when objects are personified.
- It helps to build a character around the object.
- Makes the text/poetry more interesting and fun to read.
- Literal meanings are to be ignored in such cases.
Personificationused in the poem "Firework Night":
The pet dog is the animal which is given human attributes in this poem. The poem is written in such a way that the dog speaks and lets his master know about his fears.
The feelings attributed to the dog are fright, gratitude, faithfulness and love.
- I can't bear that.
- What shall I do?
- Hear me yelp.
- I'm trembling here.
- Don't you love me anymore?
- Guard you safely all night.
The same feelings could not have been expressed easily if it had not been personified. The dog's activities might be running around nervously, licking the hand, and crouching behind the couch - but the feelings were beautifully expressed through the dialogues of the dog.