Anthropomorphic Personification
rating: 0+x

Basic Information

An Anthropomorphic Personification is the Human(-ish) embodiment of an abstract concept. Like if Good and Evil were real people.

See also:
Genius Loci
The Hecate Sisters
Moe Anthropomorphism
Pals With Jesus
Sufficiently Advanced
Venus of Willendorf


Game and Story Use

  • The TV Tropes Wiki says Anthropomorphic Personifications are god-like, but distinct from the gods, in that "Athena does many things; Death only one." However, it's certainly possible that most gods started as Anthropomorphic Personification, and just got more complicated as the body of Myth and Legend built up around them.
    • The back story of a god or goddess may involve a stint as a "mere" Anthropomorphic Personification before they ascended to the big leagues.
    • This would depend on your deity - there seem to have been plenty of them who were the personification of their portfolio, but these would seem to be more atavistic, single issue deities than, say, those of Greece and Rome who were multi-aspected and more human.
    • "Going back to the minors" may be what happens when a Deity "dies". They revert to the simplest incarnation of their persona.
  • The most common Anthropomorphic Personifications in popular media are: Good, Evil, Chaos, Order/Law, The Fates, The Grim Reaper, Mother Nature, and Father Time.
    • It can be easily extended to other concepts though, and the GM has some freedom to personify concepts that rarely get screen-time.
  • Literal interpretation: The character is the concept. If Death Takes A Holiday, nobody dies. If Lady Liberty gets stinking drunk, somewhere a dictator seizes power. It's not easy to be these folks, and a really bad idea to kill them.
  • Thematic interpretation: The character just stands for the concept. You might have seven characters, each with a tendency towards a different Deadly Sin. They have no power over it, they just take their style from the concept they embody. In this case, killing Lust doesn't make the world a more wholesome (or less exciting) place, it's just another homicide.
Unless otherwise stated, the content of this page is licensed under Creative Commons Attribution-ShareAlike 3.0 License