Fang Xi (方腊) was a rebel in the Song Dynasty and also a nemesis of the 108 heroes of Liangshan in the epic Chinese tale, the Water Margin.

Pronunciation of the nameEditar

The Han characters "方腊" are pronounced as "Fang Xi" rather than "Fang La". The confusion was caused when the character "腊" was used as a simplified version of another character "臘" (pronounced as "la"). In fact, the character "腊" was not a simplified character during the Song Dynasty, but another character pronounced as "xi".

The Fang Xi RebellionEditar

The Fang Xi Rebellion took place nearing the end of the northern Song period in China. Fang Xi was by occupation a lumberjack. Being a man from south of the Yangtse River, he became frustrated and angry at the growing corruption in the Song emperor's court. Given that this frustration was shared by many of his compatriots who suffered from the same poverty and neglect he found himself well supported. By gaining massive support and rallying troops south of the Yangtse River, he became formidable enough to challenge the emperor in the north. Soon enough, by conquering and gaining control of vast amounts of land south of the Yangtse, Fang Xi set up his own court and declared himself emperor.

Fang Xi's rebellion was eventually crushed by united local armies organized by the corrupt officials he sought to destroy. Afterwards, Fang Xi was captured and killed.

In contrast to the "Water Margin", Fang Xi never did encounter a force such as Song Jiang's 108 heroes, or even encounter Song Jiang himself who was of another time period.

Water MarginEditar

After Song Jiang had led his men on several successful campaigns against the corrupt imperial government, the latter offered the bandits amnesty. As part of the deal, Song had to repel the Liao Tartars from the north, and a trio of rebel leaders in the south. Fang Xi was one of them; the others being Tian Hu and Wang Qing.

Whilst the Liangshan contingent suffered hardly any casualties up till the point of the defeat of the Liao Tartars, the war against Fang Xi proved to be calamitous. Only 30-odd heroes survived the brutal war, and many of them were killed by Fang's men in gruesome ways, such as Qin Ming and Hao Si-wen.

Fang Xi was eventually captured after an elaborate infiltration scheme involving Chai Jin and he was gagged and tied up by Lu Zhishen.zh:方腊

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