Questions and Answers for An Occurrence at Owl Creek Bridge

An Occurrence at Owl Creek Bridge

Why was Peyton Farquhar hanged?

In Section II of "An Occurrence at Owl Creek Bridge," the scout who is posing as a Confederate soldier tells Peyton Farquhar: "The commandant has issued an order, which is posted everywhere,...

Latest answer posted January 4, 2016 7:57 am UTC

6 educator answers

An Occurrence at Owl Creek Bridge

What are examples of foreshadowing in "An Occurrence at Owl Creek Bridge"?

Another example of foreshadowing in "An Occurrence at Owl Creek Bridge" is to be found in what is going through Peyton Farquhar's mind as he is standing on the bridge with a noose around his neck...

Latest answer posted January 22, 2015 12:11 am UTC

3 educator answers

An Occurrence at Owl Creek Bridge

How was Peyton Farquhar tricked by the scout into attempting to burn down the bridge?

Ambrose Bierce provides most of the background exposition in a flashback in Part II of "An Occurrence at Owl Creek Bridge." It can be seen in the interchange between Farquhar and the Federal scout...

Latest answer posted February 29, 2016 4:07 pm UTC

1 educator answer

An Occurrence at Owl Creek Bridge

Why was Farquhar captured? Why did the Federal scout lie?

Based on what the Federal scout tells Peyton Farquhar in part II of the story, we have to make some assumptions, because we are never told explicitly why this man is being hanged. The Federal scout...

Latest answer posted October 7, 2018 12:20 pm UTC

1 educator answer

An Occurrence at Owl Creek Bridge

What is an internal and external conflict in "An Occurrence at Owl Creek Bridge"?

The story is set during the American Civil War, so one external conflict that is present is the conflict that is raging between the Union and the Confederacy. The war was over many things, but the...

Latest answer posted May 9, 2016 1:08 pm UTC

1 educator answer

An Occurrence at Owl Creek Bridge

What happens at the end of the story "An Occurrence at Owl Creek Bridge"?

Throughout the short story, Peyton Farquhar is waiting to be hanged by the Union soldiers stationed at Owl Creek bridge. While Peyton is getting ready to die, he reflects on his life and dreams...

Latest answer posted February 10, 2017 10:58 am UTC

2 educator answers

An Occurrence at Owl Creek Bridge

In "An Occurrence at Owl Creek Bridge," what literary device does Ambrose Bierce use in section two?

In section two of "An Occurrence at Owl Creek Bridge," the literary device Ambrose Bierce uses is flashback. Section one of the story describes a scene in which a man is about to be hanged from a...

Latest answer posted June 21, 2016 3:56 pm UTC

1 educator answer

An Occurrence at Owl Creek Bridge

What information does the Federal scout bring to Farquhar?

In the second section of the short story, Bierce writes that a Union spy disguised as a Confederate soldier arrives at Peyton Fahrquhar's estate to ask for a drink of water. The Union spy then...

Latest answer posted January 31, 2018 4:20 pm UTC

2 educator answers

An Occurrence at Owl Creek Bridge

What major events occur in “An Occurrence at Owl Creek Bridge”?

As Ambrose Bierce's “An Occurrence at Owl Creek Bridge” opens, we see a man standing on a railroad bridge with his wrists bound and a rope around his neck. He is about to be hanged by Union...

Latest answer posted November 18, 2020 3:12 pm UTC

4 educator answers

An Occurrence at Owl Creek Bridge

How might the impact of this story be different if Bierce revealed the events in chronological order?

By presenting the story in the order he does, and by changing the perspective of the narration, Bierce skillfully draws readers along so that he is able to trick them into believing that the action...

Latest answer posted March 13, 2016 8:46 pm UTC

2 educator answers

An Occurrence at Owl Creek Bridge

Explain Bierce's views of the war in "An Occurrence at Owl Creek Bridge."  How does he feel about it?

Ambrose Bierce's views of the war as reflected in “An Occurrence at Owl Creek Bridge” appear to be that war should not be romanticized. He seems to understand the futility of war and the insanity...

Latest answer posted February 12, 2020 4:03 am UTC

4 educator answers

An Occurrence at Owl Creek Bridge

What is the setting of the story, "An Occurrence at Owl Creek Bridge"?

The setting that readers are first introduced to is a railroad bridge over a river or stream in northern Alabama. The events of the story are taking place during the American Civil War, which took...

Latest answer posted March 4, 2018 4:34 pm UTC

2 educator answers

An Occurrence at Owl Creek Bridge

What point of view is used in "An Occurrence at Owl Creek Bridge"?

In Part 1 of the story, a third-person limited omniscient point of view is employed. This means that the narrator can only report the thoughts and feelings of one character, and that character is...

Latest answer posted December 19, 2019 3:09 pm UTC

4 educator answers

An Occurrence at Owl Creek Bridge

What are some examples of irony in "An Occurrence at Owl Creek Bridge"?

The main irony in this story is situational irony. Situational irony occurs when some kind of difference is exposed between what is expected to happen and what really happens. In other words, what...

Latest answer posted October 11, 2019 8:21 pm UTC

3 educator answers

An Occurrence at Owl Creek Bridge

In "An Occurrence at Owl Creek Bridge," what are both the internal and external conflicts in the story?

In part two, the internal conflict is revealed when Bierce elaborates on Peyton Farquhar's inner struggle to participate in the Civil War. Having an aristocratic southern background prevents...

Latest answer posted November 3, 2017 2:01 pm UTC

2 educator answers

An Occurrence at Owl Creek Bridge

What happens in Part 3 of "An Occurrence at Owl Creek Bridge"?

In the beginning of Part 3 of this story, Peyton Farquhar is getting hanged. He is being hanged because he has tried to sabotage the bridge. He gets hung, but the rope breaks and he falls into the...

Latest answer posted May 5, 2010 7:55 am UTC

1 educator answer

An Occurrence at Owl Creek Bridge

What is the  "climax" of the story "An Occurrence at Owl Creek Bridge"?

The non-traditional layout of Ambrose Bierce's short story "An Occurrence at Owl Bridge" definitely makes it more difficult to identify all of the plot structure elements. The climax is...

Latest answer posted November 25, 2012 11:03 pm UTC

1 educator answer

An Occurrence at Owl Creek Bridge

An Occurrence At Owl Creek Bridge Realism

Literary realism describes reality through details that include mundane items and everyday experiences as they occur in the real world. The genre seeks to stay as close to the truth or accurate...

Latest answer posted February 16, 2020 10:22 pm UTC

4 educator answers

An Occurrence at Owl Creek Bridge

Why does Ambrose Bierce change the perspective of the story-telling in "An Occurrence at Owl Creek Bridge," and how...

The narrator of Ambrose Bierce's short story "An Occurrence at Owl Creek Bridge" knows everything about the protagonist, Peyton Farquhar: who he is, what he does, and what he thinks and feels. The...

Latest answer posted January 7, 2014 6:25 pm UTC

1 educator answer

An Occurrence at Owl Creek Bridge

In "An Occurence at Owl Creek Bridge" what is the mood of the text? Please provide textual evidence.

The mood shifts according to the point-of-view in "An Occurrence at Owl Bridge" by Ambrose Bierce. As the story opens the mood is stoic; the scene portrayed reads more like a report of how the...

Latest answer posted May 3, 2012 4:37 am UTC

1 educator answer

An Occurrence at Owl Creek Bridge

Part 2 of the story is a flashback. List its events in chronological order. Be sure to explain who visits Peyton...

Part 2 is a flashback where we learn about Farquhar’s background. Descended from a family of the Old South, he is a wealthy plantation and slave owner. Sadly (but for reasons not explained) unable...

Latest answer posted January 30, 2020 2:02 pm UTC

3 educator answers

An Occurrence at Owl Creek Bridge

In three to five sentences, explain how Ambrose Bierce's use of foreshadowing or flashback influence "An Occurrence...

This is perhaps Bierce's most well known Civil War story, in part because because of a "Twilight Zone" production of it in the late 1950s or early 1960s, and it has remained popular for its...

Latest answer posted January 19, 2012 12:08 am UTC

1 educator answer

An Occurrence at Owl Creek Bridge

In "An Occurrence at Owl Creek Bridge," what is the function of the flashback in section two and why is it placed there?

An Occurrence at Owl Creek Bridge is neatly divided into three sections, the first and last longer and the middle one shorter. Section two provides the explanation of how and why the protagonist,...

Latest answer posted January 19, 2016 3:57 pm UTC

3 educator answers

An Occurrence at Owl Creek Bridge

In which sections of "An Occurrence at Owl Creek Bridge" is an outside person narrating the action? In which sections...

In unfolding "An Occurrence at Owl Creek Bridge," Ambrose Bierce narrates action through both outside observation (third-person narration) and Farquhar’s own thoughts (interior monologue). Bierce...

Latest answer posted February 12, 2020 10:16 pm UTC

2 educator answers

An Occurrence at Owl Creek Bridge

Bierce's style is to tell his story out of chronological order. How might the impact of the story be different if the...

This is a very interesting question. No doubt Ambrose Bierce himself considered writing the tale in chronological order but decided against it. For one thing, he would have had to sacrifice the...

Latest answer posted October 29, 2012 3:36 pm UTC

1 educator answer

An Occurrence at Owl Creek Bridge

Why is Peyton Farquhar not involved with the army in "An Occurrence at Owl Creek Bridge"?

The narrator tells us that Peyton Farquhar is a wealthy plantation owner who ardently supports the Confederate cause against the Union Army. Despite his affinity for the Confederacy and his...

Latest answer posted October 23, 2018 11:59 pm UTC

3 educator answers

An Occurrence at Owl Creek Bridge

What point of view does the writer use in Part III of the story,  which occurs within the few seconds before Farquhar...

Ambrose Bierce utilizes third person limited narration as well as third person objective narration throughout Part Three of the short story. Third person limited point of view is when the narrator...

Latest answer posted January 5, 2018 11:23 am UTC

2 educator answers

An Occurrence at Owl Creek Bridge

Why, in "An Occurrence at Owl Creek Bridge," does Ambrose Bierce not report the events of the story in exact...

By telling the events of the story out of chronological order, Ambrose Bierce sets the scene for the reader, establishes the stakes, and creates the opportunity for a surprise ending. The story of...

Latest answer posted April 30, 2020 9:19 pm UTC

3 educator answers

An Occurrence at Owl Creek Bridge

Are there any symbols in "An Occurrence at Owl Creek Bridge" by Ambrose Bierce?

Ambrose Bierce’s short story “Owl Creek Bridge” draws much of its eerie power from the way it uses universal symbols. Bierce takes deeply evocative symbols—such as the bridge, the water, the...

Latest answer posted January 20, 2020 10:11 am UTC

4 educator answers

An Occurrence at Owl Creek Bridge

In "An Occurrence at Owl Creek Bridge," what point is Bierce making about military formalities?

In this story set during the Civil War, there is one reference made to "military etiquette," which I assume is the focus of your question. It comes in the first section as the soldiers prepare...

Latest answer posted December 14, 2010 6:18 pm UTC

1 educator answer

An Occurrence at Owl Creek Bridge

What happens after Farquhar seems to escape from the creek?

A great deal of the story's narration is about Farquhar being swept downstream away from the soldiers shooting at him. Farquhar will eventually be washed onto the shore, and the very first thing...

Latest answer posted November 18, 2018 4:34 am UTC

2 educator answers

An Occurrence at Owl Creek Bridge

Comment on the shifts in the point of view in "An Occurrence at Owl Creek Bridge."

You are right to identify that Bierce uses narration in a very interesting way in this famous story. For example, in section 3, the point of view shifts to the third-person-limited point of view...

Latest answer posted June 20, 2011 8:18 pm UTC

1 educator answer

An Occurrence at Owl Creek Bridge

What are some examples of naturalism in the story "An Occurrence at Owl Creek Bridge"? 

The first and most obvious example of naturalism in "The Occurrence at Owl Creek Bridge" is the narrator's commitment to detachment. Without question, the death experienced by the primary character...

Latest answer posted February 10, 2020 8:35 pm UTC

3 educator answers

An Occurrence at Owl Creek Bridge

What is the exposition, rising action, turning point, falling action, and denouement of "An Occurrence at Owl Creek...

Creating the standard plot chart for this story isn't quite as straightforward as it is for other short stories. The reason for this is because the story isn't told chronologically. A fairly...

Latest answer posted October 15, 2019 12:36 pm UTC

3 educator answers

An Occurrence at Owl Creek Bridge

What sensation does Farquhar experience "with terrible suddenness" before he has been hanged in "An Occurence at Owl...

The passage to which you are referring is Then all at once, with terrible suddenness, the light about him shot upward with the noise of a loud plash; a frightful roaring was in his ears, and all...

Latest answer posted December 15, 2009 1:07 am UTC

1 educator answer

An Occurrence at Owl Creek Bridge

In "An Occurrence at Owl Creek Bridge," what structure is used and how would I argue this form?

There are three parts as mentioned already, and each section varies in point of view, with interesting uses of this literary element. In the first section, the omniscient narrator is employed, so...

Latest answer posted October 26, 2010 3:06 pm UTC

5 educator answers

An Occurrence at Owl Creek Bridge

Where did Farquhar die?  

Peyton Farquhar dies beneath the Owl Creek Bridge. He was captured and hanged for trying to sabotage and destroy the bridge so that that the Union army could not use it. The story is great, and...

Latest answer posted March 28, 2016 12:06 pm UTC

2 educator answers

An Occurrence at Owl Creek Bridge

What is ironic about the fact that Farquhar agrees with the saying that, "all is fair in love and war?" "An...

In Ambrose Bierce's "An Occurrence at Owl Creek Bridge," the irony of the statement to which Farquhar agrees, "all is fair in love and war" is situational irony. That is, there is discrepancy...

Latest answer posted April 16, 2010 12:03 pm UTC

2 educator answers

An Occurrence at Owl Creek Bridge

What is the significance of Mrs. Farquhar's character?

Mrs. Farquhar plays a significant role in the story even though she speaks no lines of dialogue. Interestingly, she serves to make Farquhar both a more sympathetic character and a less sympathetic...

Latest answer posted July 7, 2019 5:22 am UTC

2 educator answers

An Occurrence at Owl Creek Bridge

How might the story be different if Bierce had used an omniscient third-person narrator? How might the story be...

In his story, Ambrose Pierce DOES use omnisicient narrator; he just does not use it throughout the story. In the different sections, there are variations in point of view: omniscient, in which...

Latest answer posted May 11, 2010 6:14 pm UTC

2 educator answers

An Occurrence at Owl Creek Bridge

In this story the Civil War serves as a backdrop; Bierce's main intent is to examine the psychology of someone in a...

Ambrose Bierce implies several things about the psychology of the human mind in "An Occurrence at Owl Creek Bridge". One is that the mind essentially creates its own reality, especially in a moment...

Latest answer posted December 28, 2015 3:50 am UTC

1 educator answer

An Occurrence at Owl Creek Bridge

Why is the stream-of-consciousness technique particularly appropriate for "An Occurrence at Owl Creek Bridge"?

Stream of consciousness is a literary technique that focuses on the flow of thoughts within the minds of characters rather than objective linear narrative. The term was first described in The...

Latest answer posted February 16, 2019 5:43 pm UTC

3 educator answers

An Occurrence at Owl Creek Bridge

What does the reader learn in section 2 of "An Occurrence at Owl Creek Bridge" about the main character's home life,...

In part 2 of the short story "An Occurrence at Owl Creek Bridge," Ambrose Bierce provides significant insight into Peyton Farquhar's background, social status, political loyalties, and motivations....

Latest answer posted June 16, 2020 3:44 pm UTC

3 educator answers

An Occurrence at Owl Creek Bridge

How do Bierce's choices create suspense?

Bierce's choice of an opening scene immediately creates suspense, as the reader will want to know the identity of the man who stood twenty feet above the water with his hands tied behind his back...

Latest answer posted March 25, 2019 6:44 pm UTC

2 educator answers

An Occurrence at Owl Creek Bridge

How much time elapses between the opening and closing lines of Part III?

At the beginning of Part III, " . . . Peyton Farquhar fell straight downward through the bridge[,] he lost consciousness and was as one already dead." After this, the narrator says that he was...

Latest answer posted February 11, 2018 12:55 pm UTC

3 educator answers

An Occurrence at Owl Creek Bridge

What is the effect of the shift into the present tense in paragraph 36 in "An Occurrence at Owl Creek Bridge?"

The shift to the present tense in the penultimate paragraph gives a sense of immediacy to Peyton Farquar's experience. But it's not the immediacy of reality; instead, it's the immediacy of a dream....

Latest answer posted February 17, 2019 8:40 am UTC

2 educator answers

An Occurrence at Owl Creek Bridge

What major events occur in the story?

One of the most important events in the story is Peyton Farquhar's execution. He's hanged from a bridge by Union soldiers for conspiring to commit an act of sabotage, a very serious crime in...

Latest answer posted May 15, 2019 8:55 am UTC

2 educator answers

An Occurrence at Owl Creek Bridge

In "An Occurrence at Owl Creek Bridge," comment on the quote "Evidently this was no vulgar assassin. The liberal...

Bierce's "An Occurrence at Owl Creek Bridge," which, along with many of his Civil War stories, came out of his own experience as a Captain of topographical engineers (map makers) in the federal...

Latest answer posted February 11, 2017 11:39 am UTC

2 educator answers

An Occurrence at Owl Creek Bridge

Did the author intend Farquhar's escape to seem believable?

Yes, the author certainly intended Peyton Farquhar's escape to be believable. That is the heart and soul of the story. The reader identifies with Farquhar and shares his thoughts and feelings in...

Latest answer posted January 13, 2016 2:56 pm UTC

1 educator answer

An Occurrence at Owl Creek Bridge

Why was Farquhar hanged?  

In Part II of "An Occurrence at Owl Creek Bridge" the Union scout posing as a Confederate soldier tells Peyton Farquhar: The commandant has issued an order, which is posted everywhere, declaring...

Latest answer posted February 13, 2016 6:36 pm UTC

1 educator answer

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