Personification is the literary term for giving human characteristics to something that is not human.
When an author or speaker personifies something, he or she describes the thing as acting as a living, thinking, feeling human being might act.
1. The grease jumped out of the pan.
2. The curtains danced in the breeze.
3. The tree branch scratched and clawed at my windowsill, trying to break into the house.
4. During the night, the blanket crept up until it was snuggled under my chin and my feet were bare.
5. The mother duck scolded her young, encouraging them to walk in a line.
6. The diving board taunted me, daring me to approach.
Examples of Personification in Literature
"Quoth the raven, "Nevermore." . . . But the Raven, sitting lonely on the placid bust, spoke onlyThat one word, as if his soul in that one word he did outpour." Edgar Allan Poe, "The Raven"
"The grey-eyed morn smiles on the frowning night." Shakespeare, Romeo and Juliet
All of the animals in Charlotte's Web have been given human characteristics.
"We have to stand for a few minutes in the doorway of the train while the cameras gobble up our images, then we're allowed inside and the doors close mercifully behind us." The Hunger Games