What Are Some Examples of Personification in "The Legend of Sleepy Hollow?"

An example of personification in "The Legend of Sleepy Hollow" occurs near the beginning when the narrator describes the "angry echoes" that occur after he shoots a gun. This comparison is personification because the narrator gives the non-human echoes the human characteristic of anger.

Personification is the attribution of human traits to a non-human object or being, which is what ocurrs when the narrator calls the setting of the story a "sleepy region." An area does not have the capacity to feel tired, so describing it as "sleepy" is another example of personification. He makes a similar comparison later in the same paragraph, describing his walks in the "drowsy shades" of Sleepy Hollow. Again, the "shades," or shadows, of the area are not capable of feeling drowsiness, so such a comparison constitutes personification.

Later in the story, the narrator describes the bountiful farm of Baltus Van Tassel using a number of instances of personification. He describes the farmer's "squadron" of geese and "regiments" of turkeys, associating these fowl with troops in the military. Later, Ichabod Crane, the story's protagonist, imagines pigeons "snugly put to bed in a comfortable pie," comparing the birds cooking in a pie crust to children tucked into bed. The narrator also describes "sunbeams [that] seem to sleep so quietly," again imparting the human ability to feel tired to nature.