Ambrose Bierce Essay Sample

August 5, 2017 General Studies

Ambrose Bierce. considered a consecutive forward yet descriptive author. shows his strong sentiment about war while maintaining the reader in tuned with his short narratives. In his book The Collected Works of Ambrose Bierce Vol. 2: Narratives of Soldiers and Civilians the writer describes to the reader the non so glorious truths about war behind several soldiers eyes. By exemplifying the ghastly conflicts. the unsafe scenarios. the emotional injury. and the unfortunate decease defying terminations ; the writer communicates that the courageous work forces who fight and die uprightly for their state experience dismaying and non so glorious sides of war.

Bierce demonstrates the black horrors of war by exemplifying the ghastly conflicts that go on in his short narratives. For case. a female parent was caught between a conflict traveling on. The female parent was dead. puting on the land with her apparels deranged and her organic structure covered in blood. The brow was slashed and the hapless adult female had a hole on her caput. oozing with blood. were she was shot by a soldier ( pg. 24 ) . In Parker Adderson. Philosopher. a mini war happened between three people. A captain was killed with a bowie knife that slit through his pharynx. a general. contending against decease. had contusions and two blade wounds deep into his thigh and shoulder. and an enemy undercover agent. who caused these lesions. was shot to decease ( pg. 65-66 ) . Another illustration would be in the short narrative. One Kind of Officer. were Captain Ransome faced a cruel and painful decease by experiencing the slugs from a rifle tear through his bosom while mentally accepting the fact that this is the terminal of his live ( pg. 90 ) . These illustrations portray a few of the gory battles that go on in his narratives.

Bierce demonstrates the black horrors of war by narrating the unsafe scenarios soldiers and officers face by being portion of the military. For case. a soldier named Thurston was separated from Captain Burlings ground forces while contending the Confederates. Subsequently. his ground forces found him badly wounded from taking the enemies concluding defence ( pg. 99 ) . For another illustration. a undercover agent was sent to the Confederate ground forces to garner utile information for the Unions. In the terminal the undercover agent ends up acquiring caught. non being able to get away. and gets changeable to decease by 20 work forces ( pg. 66 ) . This shows how hazardous the responsibilities of a undercover agent truly can be. Another illustration of unsafe scenarios would be when Private Grayrock of the Federal Army was on the expression out for enemies near by ( pg. 102 ) . As it got darker. the Private was no longer able to see a thing in sight. Everything was a fuzz of unknown objects and saw nil in item. At this point he lost his bearings and was unable to state which way an enemy’s attack might be. doing non merely his ain safety and life in hazard. but besides the safety and lives of other soldiers he was supposed to protect every bit good ( pg. 103 ) .

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Bierce demonstrates the black horrors of war by demoing emotional and bosom breakage injury that goes on through out his book. For illustration. in Chickamauga. a immature male child gets lost in the forests and lurchs into a group of soldiers wounded and bloody. Being scared. the male child runs off impetuously into a battleground where he witnesses rivers stained from the pathetic sum of blood and soldiers drowned and dead from over exhaustion. He besides experiences the air filled with fume. elans of blood covering the surfaces. and seeing non a individual life thing ( pg. 23 ) . This scared him emotionally off from his dream of going a soldier. Subsequently on the narrative. the male child finds his manner back place and sees his female parent dead and covered in blood. The male child becomes inactive and calls horrifically from the bosom interrupting minute ( pg. 24 ) . Another illustration of emotional injury from the war would be in Killed at Resaca. In this chapter. it explains the face to face brushs the soldiers experience with hours and hours of killing your ain species and watching them dice every bit good.

This life manner is “not a happy 1. ” because of the emotional hurt it puts on a soldier ( pg. 42 ) . In the Coupe De Grace. the narrative negotiations about two friends. Captain Madwell and Creed Halcrow. who have grown up together since childhood and portion a strong bonded friendly relationship. Captain Madwell joined the ground forces and since Creed Halcrow was so affiliated to his friend and he decided to follow. despite his deficiency of involvement in being in the military ( pg. 56 ) . He could non penetrate the emotional separation the ground forces would hold put him through. The short narrative. the Horseman in the Sky. Bierce explains the abandoned relationship between a male parent and boy. The boy. Carter Druse. left his household to contend in the ground forces with the disapproval from his male parent ( pg. 5 ) . Later on the narrative. Druse reunites with his male parent. yet this clip behind a rifle. Druse was forced to make up one’s mind between his responsibilities as a soldier and the emotional bond between him and his male parent. In the terminal. Druse’s emotions take over and he shoots a Equus caballus alternatively ( pg. 9 ) .

Bierce demonstrates the black horrors of war by doing every short narrative terminal with an unfortunate destiny. For illustration. in An Happening at Owl Creek Bridge. Peyton Farquhar was killed by being hanged by his enemy. Farquhar’s cervix was broken and his organic structure was singing back and Forth. dead. above the Owl Creek Bridge ( pg. 18 ) . In The Sons of God. many organic structures of great work forces were dead. lying all over the land with non a individual spare of life ( pg. 30 ) In One Officer. One Man. the federal ground forces had the award to describe that the enemy has withdrawn. but still a loss was included. Killed. was one officer and one adult male ( pg. 96 ) . In The Story of Conscience. Captain Hartroy ordered an officer that Captain Graham is to be shot for the accusal of being a undercover agent and a apostate. After being changeable. Graham was buried. like a undercover agent and apostate. granted with no military awards. and rested in decease in a long forgotten grave ( pg. 81 ) . In An Affair of Outposts. the Governor asked for Captain Armisted. a great and baronial adult male. and found his dead organic structure in the row of decease. discreetly covered in hankie ( pg. 75 ) . All these short narratives end with despairing deceases.

Ambrose Bierce portrays a acrimonious stoping in all his short narratives because he interprets war as a hideous thing. Through out the book. Bierce gives legion illustrations about ghastly conflicts competitions participate in. unsafe scenarios soldiers face. emotional injury. and decease defying destinies to endorse up the message that the courageous work forces who fight and die uprightly for their state is dismaying and denouncing to the glorification of war.


Bierce. Ambrose. The Collected Works of Ambrose Bierce Vol 2: In the Midst of Life: Narratives of Soldiers and Civilians. SAN FRANCISCO: Mr. E. L. G. Steele. 1891.


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