Definition of personification in English:


Syllabification: per·son·i·fi·ca·tion
Pronunciation: /pərˌsänəfiˈkāSHən


  • 1The attribution of a personal nature or human characteristics to something nonhuman, or the representation of an abstract quality in human form.
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    • In those cultures, many scholars and many books would say the same: All these gods are then personification of some nature or phenomenon.
    • The function of this process of personification is that it permits nature to be thought of as if it were a society of persons, and so makes of it a social or moral order.
    • Evil, mysterious, hostile to health and goodness, demons were once viewed as inferior gods-the personification of the powers behind human sickness, idolatry, and heresy.
  • 1.1A figure intended to represent an abstract quality: the design on the franc shows Marianne, the personification of the French republic
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    • The biblical figures bracket seated personifications of Virtues, and they establish the underlying context: mankind's redemption through Christ's advent.
    • By far the majority of personifications are feminine, products of either an idealization or demonization of woman.
    • Eros is a term insufficiently abstract; Eros is a god, Aphrodite a personification.
    embodiment, incarnation, epitome, quintessence, essence, type, symbol, soul, model, exemplification, exemplar, image, representation
  • 1.2 [in singular] A person, animal, or object regarded as representing or embodying a quality, concept, or thing: he was the very personification of British pluck and diplomacy
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    • The ultimate personification of God's love was Jesus, and His love was expressed through the action of dying on the cross.
    • She is the archetypal personification of the sonnet claim because she promises Petrarch poetic fame.
    • His public image was the personification of noblesse oblige, a wholesome and vigorous young president with a beautiful wife and young children.

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