Magnified by its lift against the sky and by the soldier’s testifying sense of the . He was a civilian, if one might judge from his dress which was that of a planter. Tales of Soldiers and Civilians. Ambrose Bierce. This web edition published by [email protected] Last updated Wednesday, December 17, at Tales of Soldiers and Civilians, by Ambrose Bierce .au/b/bierce/ambrose/tales-of-soldiers-and-civilians/contents.

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At that moment an officer of the Federal force, who, in a spirit of adventure or in quest of knowledge, had left the hidden bivouac in the valley, and, with aimless feet, had made his way to the lower edge of a small open space near the foot of the cliff, was considering what he had to gain by pushing his exploration further. Its motions were those of a wild gallop, but even as the officer looked they ceased, with all the legs thrown sharply forward as in the act of alighting from a leap.

Bierce understands that a fivilians short story builds to an “effect”.

He dug his fingers into the sand, threw it over himself in handfuls and audibly blessed it. There is reason to think that the enemy has retreated. At some little distance lay his horse. Having answered, he turned away his face and said no more.

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His term of unconsciousness, including the period of recovery, during which civiliians had had the strange fancies, had probably not exceeded a few seconds, for the dust of the wreck had not wholly cleared away as he began an intelligent survey of the situation. This building, which had originally consisted of a single room, elevated upon four posts about ten feet high, was now little more than a roof; the floor had fallen away, the joists and planks loosely piled on the ground below or resting on end at various angles, not wholly torn from their fastenings above.

See all 5 reviews. Figures of soldlers men and horses were plainly visible. If permitted he may turn and ride carelessly away in the direction whence he came. A fish slid along beneath his eyes and he heard the rush civiliabs its body parting the water.

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Several of Bierce’s short stories take place at Cheat Mountain in present-day West Virginia, where my great-great-great grandfather died. The clump of amborse in which the criminal lay was in the angle of a road which, after ascending, southward, a steep acclivity to that point, turned sharply to the west, running along the summit for perhaps one hundred yards.

In all the wide glare not a living thing was visible. The face of the rider, turned slightly to the left, showed only an outline of temple and beard; he was looking downward to the bottom of the valley. The crest of that gentle hill a mile away has a sinister look; it says, Beware! A counter swirl had caught Farquhar and turned him half round; he was again looking into the forest on the bank opposite the fort. Bierce frequently relies on the device of a surprise or paradoxical ending, and the Grim Reaper dependably closes the curtains.

Which is the greater “work of art,” the short story or the novel? It was attached to a stout cross-timber above his head, and the slack fell to the level of cicilians knees. Buy the selected items together This item: The water roared in his ears like the voice of Niagara, yet he heard the dulled thunder of the volley, and, rising again toward the surface, met shining bits of metal, singularly flattened, oscillating slowly downward. From his point of view the officer does not observe the rifle; the man was apparently killed by the fall of the building.

He is facing the distant crest, holding his field glass against his eyes with both hands, his elbows soodiers elevated; it is a fashion; it seems to dignify the act; we are all addicted to it. Not all of this did the child note; it is what would have been noted by an older observer; he saw little but that these were men, yet crept like babes.

In his delirium he had beaten it against the jagged fragments of the wreck, had clutched it full of splinters. If he turned away his eyes an instant it was to look for assistance although he could not see the ground on either side the ruinand he permitted them to return, obedient to the imperative fascination.

Nothing could now unfix his gaze from the little ring of metal with its black interior. There it turned southward again and went zigzagging downward through the forest.

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There was blood upon his forehead. In these stories, Bierce is at his best drawing from actual experience and knowledge of how the Northern army works.

Tales of Soldiers and Civilians

Byring turned away his eyes and began humming a tune, but he broke off in the middle of a bar and looked at the dead man. Truly remarkable author whose name is not mentioned often enough in turn of the 20th century names. Sep 19, Koen Kop rated it liked it. To see what your friends thought of this book, please sign up.

To die of hanging at the bottom of a river! May 23, Steven Shook rated it it was amazing Shelves: The supporting posts were themselves no longer vertical.

Tales of Soldiers and Civilians, by Ambrose Bierce : contents

Had the soulless living joined forces with the soulless dead? It appeared to him at first to surround some perfectly black substance, and it was somewhat more than a half inch in diameter. The feeling was dispelled by a slight movement of the group; the horse, without moving its feet, had drawn its body slightly backward from the verge; the man remained immobile as before.

Thanks for telling us about the problem. Evidently he’d also worked out a fairly versatile formula for quickly penning them: Bierrce was not seriously injured, nor did he suffer pain.

His age was about thirty. His prose is so amazing that I found myself rereading some of his passages just taless I could make sure I was getting the full meaning.

A smart civilianss on the head from a flying fragment of the splintered post, incurred simultaneously with the frightfully sudden shock to the nervous system, had momentarily dazed him. A blackguard whose faulty vision sees things as they are, not as they ought to be. Surely it will be possible to judge at the instant of his withdrawing whether he knows.

My interest in Bierce has grown over the years.