This early work by Ambrose Bierce was originally published in 1894 and we are now republishing it with a brand new introductory biography as part of our Cryptofiction Classics series. 'The Damned Thing' is a short story of an inquest into a mysterious death possibly caused by unseen natural forces. Ambrose Gwinnett Bierce was born in Meigs County, Ohio, United States in 1842. He was the tenth of thirteen children, and left home aged fifteen to become a 'printer's devil' (a printing apprentice) at a small Ohio newspaper. Many of his short stories - such as 'An Occurrence at Owl Creek Bridge', 'The Boarded Window', 'Killed at Resaca' and 'Chickamauga', all of which are penned in 'Pure English' - are held among the best of the 19th century. Bierce's writings are also generally regarded as some of the best war writings of all time.