"Zu betrügen ist der Tod der bezauberndsten der Spiele."
(To cheat Death is the most charming of games.)
— Ansel Lamps
At the beginning of the Nightworld Adventure, Ansel is thirty-four years old, eleven months a vampire. He is the fifth of the Jägerpuppen to be created, and serves as the team's scientific mind and part-time torturer.
Lanky and gaunt, Ansel stands 5'11". He has long, shaggy light brown hair, fair skin, a slightly beaky nose and glassy grayish-blue eyes. Rather incongruously, he enjoys wearing sweaters and corduroys, and always keeps himself scrupulously clean.
Ansel is never seen as anything but absently keen in an alarming manner, rather like a professor who spends all his time at the microscope. His mind is indeed of a scientific bent, but bent around one subject in particular: Death. He has been fascinated by it ever since he was a child, and takes every chance he gets to explore the phenomenon in as many permutations as he can think up. He can often be found by himself in the castle experimenting, in fact. Usually on other creatures, but occasionally on himself. And, when his master is feeling dangerously frisky, on von Höllental.
Ansel was born in Borogravia a human; the oldest of four children, of which only one other survived, his youngest brother Elizabeth (a wealthy and influential aunt had stated her wish to be named after the next child, and Mr. and Mrs. Lamp were pragmatic types). At the age of nineteen, he took up the family trade of undertaking and stayed behind while the rest of the Lamps made the move to Ankh-Morpork to take over his mother's deceased brother's storefront and secure Elizabeth's schooling situation.
He met Geier von Höllental while in hiding from the local militia: he'd been put on the wanted list for increasing his own business in a decidedly unsettling manner. Upon learning who his temporary collaborator was, Ansel asked the vampire Lord to make him a vampire-- but to kill him first, so that he could experience death firsthand and survive to have the memory and put down an account of it.
Also, von Höllental's pet name for him is gruselig (creepy). Sort of says it all, doesn't it.