Arsonist vs Pyromaniac: Difference and Comparison

Arsonist and pyromaniac terms refer to the act of crime.

Arsonists and pyromaniacs are used in similar ways, but they differ in meaning and also differ in the mindset of the person.

They are intentional. There is a difference between the criminal mindset or the behaviour of the person and the impulse control disorder.

They both are associated with fire settings.

Key Takeaways

  1. Arsonists intentionally set fires for criminal purposes, such as causing property damage, insurance fraud, or harming others.
  2. Pyromaniacs have a psychological impulse to set fires, driven by an uncontrollable fascination with fire and its effects.
  3. Arson is a criminal act, whereas pyromania is a psychiatric disorder; both can result in dangerous and damaging fires.

 Arsonist vs Pyromaniac

An arsonist is a person who intentionally sets fires with the intent to cause damage or harm and whose behaviour is considered a criminal offence in many jurisdictions. A pyromaniac is a person who has an irresistible impulse to start fires without a clear motive or intention to cause harm.

Arsonist vs Pyromaniac

An arsonist is a person who sets fire to someone else’s property for vengeance to get satisfaction. This is a crime.

They do so to get revenge and sometimes for insurance money. It is a common disorder among people.

A pyromaniac is a person who intentionally sets fire to someone else’s property for satisfaction. This is a rare clinical disorder.

They get tension before setting the fire and get gratification after doing so. It is a rare disorder among people.

Comparison Table

Parameters of ComparisonArsonistPyromaniac
DefinitionAn arsonist is a person who sets fire on someone else’s property for vengeance to get satisfaction.A pyromaniac is a person who intentionally sets fire on someone else’s property for satisfaction.
DisorderIt is a common disorder among people.It is a rare disorder among people.
CrimeThis is considered a crime.This is not considered a crime.
ObjectiveA person with arson or an arsonist is a person who sets fire or burns down someone else’s property for revenge or vengeance or is trying to collect the insurance money.A person who has pyromaniac doesn’t have a desire to hurt someone, does not have a desire for monetary gains.  
Who does thisArsonists are people who have troubled childhood.A pyromaniac is someone who has a mental illness or has a gambling disorder or has been sexually or physically abused.

What is an Arsonist?

Arson is a criminal act of burning the property of someone for improper purposes.

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This act can be called a terrorist act as it is a method of destruction and loss of human lives and is a crime that is only revenge-driven.

Arson is considered a crime by the law because the person who does this act is fully in their senses, and this act is done by them purposefully in the name of revenge or vengeance.

 An arsonist is a person who creates a large amount of damage by setting fire to someone else’s property in order to take revenge.

An arsonist has a criminal mindset and wants to satisfy his vengeance. Many arsonists are people who had a troubled childhood, like abuse or alcoholism.

Thomas A. Sweatt is a convicted serial arsonist. He set over 350 fires around the capital of the USA around 2003 and 2004.

arsonist

What is a Pyromaniac?

Pyromania is a rare clinical disorder. This act is not considered a crime because people do this act because of tension, excitement, or pleasure.

They are people who set fires because of their impulses or mindsets. They set fire purposefully on more than one occasion.

They get excited before the act and intense pleasure and gratification after the act.

A pyromaniac is someone who watches fire in the neighbourhood or sets off false alarms. They have an obsession with fire.

They do not set fire for monetary purposes. They are not based on intellectual disability.

It is a crime with a wave of impulses. They suffer from impulse control disorder that pushes them to accomplish these acts because of the way they feel while doing this activity.

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Other pyromania symptoms include curiosity about fire, watching fires in the neighbourhood, and gaining pleasure in doing so. These symptoms cannot be responses to delusions or hallucinations.

pyromaniac

Main Differences Between an Arsonist and a Pyromaniac

  1. An arsonist is a person who has a motivation or a feeling of revenge on someone else, whereas a pyromaniac is someone who has a psychological disorder.
  2. Arson is common in some countries, whereas pyromaniac is a rare disorder found in people.
  3. A person with arson or an arsonist is a person who sets fire or burns down someone else’s property for revenge or vengeance or is trying to collect the insurance money, whereas a person who has pyromaniac doesn’t have the desire to hurt someone does not have a desire for monetary gains.
  4. Arson is a crime, whereas pyromania is a psychiatric diagnosis.
  5. Arson is done by a person who is looking for revenge, but the pyromaniac sets fire because of the feelings he gets afterwards.
  6. Arsonists are people who have troubled childhood, whereas a pyromaniac has a mental illness, a gambling disorder or has been sexually or physically abused.
Difference Between an Arsonist and a Pyromaniac
References
  1. https://psycnet.apa.org/psycinfo/1967-12122-001/
  2. https://bmcpsychiatry.biomedcentral.com/articles/10.1186/1471-244x-5-47

Last Updated : 13 July, 2023

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9 thoughts on “Arsonist vs Pyromaniac: Difference and Comparison”

  1. I’m not entirely sure if the Pyromaniac disorder is characterized by tension and excitement, though I may have to do more research

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