The main character of the short story “Chickamauga” by Ambrose Bierce – and also the protagonist – is the little boy. The wounded soldiers are also important, and they can be analyzed in brief like a collective character. Other characters which are only mentioned are the boy’s father, the mother, a few colored slave workers on the boy’s plantation and the boy’s ancestors.

The child

The child is the protagonist of the short story. Nothing much is revealed regarding outer characterization. The only thing that we know about him is that he is six years old and that he carries with him a wooden sword. The story behind the sword is quite interesting: “The man loved military books and pictures, and the boy had understood enough to make himself a wooden sword, though even the eye of his father would hardly have known it for what it was.”

Inner characterization

Regarding inner characterization, things become more interesting. It is revealed from the very beginning that the boy comes from a “heroic race”. This is why he wanders outside his home unobserved, in search of an adventure: “It was happy in a new sense of freedom from control, happy in the opportunity of exploration and adventure;”

What is more, the...

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