I first read the His Dark Materials trilogy by Philip Pullman in middle school/high school, and like every other reader, promptly had to figure out what my own daemon would be. I’ve known pretty much since then that I’d have some sort of feline. Since adopting my cats, it’s pretty certain my daemon’s final form is the same as that of my ridiculous blue-point Siamese, Alex.

One distinctive aspect of Pullman’s story is the presence of “dæmons” (pronounced “demon”). In the birth-universe of the story’s protagonist Lyra Belacqua, a human individual’s inner-self manifests itself throughout life as an animal-shaped “dæmon”, that almost always stays near its human counterpart. During the childhood of its associated human, a dæmon can change its animal shape at will, but with the onset of adolescence it settles into a fixed, final animal form.

Via wikipedia.org

As a characterization and world-building exercise, I’ve also started assigning daemons to the inhabitants of my own fiction. Obviously these will never show up in my writing (because plagiarism), but they are fun details to share.

Find the full Steel Empires series here.

Find the books set in Philip Pullman’s His Dark Materials universe here.

Toria Connor:
Manul (Pallas’ Cat)

Otocolobus manul

Learn more about Pallas’ cat

Kane Nalamas:
Gray Wolf

Canis lupus

Learn more about the gray wolf


Corvus corax

Learn more about the common raven

Arctic Fox

Vulpes lagopus

Learn more about the Arctic fox

Archer Sophin:
Asian Small-Clawed Otter

Amblonyx cinereus

Learn more about the Asian small-clawed otter

More coming soon!

Note: All images via open sources.