A Golem is a creature of Jewish mythology, an animated statue (typically ceramic) brought to life by placing holy words in its mouth to serve as a worker or defender. Famous legends include the Golem of Rabbai Loew, built to defend the Jewish population of Prague from antisemetic mobs. Golems are one of several myths about inanimate objects brought to life (for example the Greek God Hephaestus built gold and silver women to assist him).
Golems in fiction
Many modern fantasy works take the idea of a golem, often using them as guards or as laborers. In many respects, golems used in this sense could be thought of as supernatural robots.
Golems play a major role in several Discworld novels, in particular Feet of Clay, Going Postal, and Making Money.