Bai Sheng

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Bai Sheng
Water Margin character
Nickname "Daylight Rat"
白日鼠
Rank 106th, Rat Star (地耗星) of the 72 Earthly Fiends
Scout leader of Liangshan
Origin Gambler
Hometown Anle Village, Yuncheng County, Shandong
First appearance Chapter 16
Names
Simplified Chinese 白胜
Traditional Chinese 白勝
Pinyin Bái Shèng
Wade–Giles Pai Sheng
This is a Chinese name; the family name is Bai.

Bai Sheng is a fictional character in the Water Margin, one of the Four Great Classical Novels of Chinese literature. He ranks 106th of the 108 Liangshan heroes and 70th of the 72 Earthly Fiends. He is nicknamed "Daylight Rat" for his scavenging behaviour and lack of a stable job.

Background[edit]

Bai Sheng is from Anle Village, Yuncheng County, Shandong. He does not have a decent job and idles and gambles all the time. He is a close friend of Chao Gai, the headman of Eastern Creek Village, who helped him before.

Robbing the birthday gifts[edit]

Chao Gai and his six friends (Wu Yong, Gongsun Sheng, Liu Tang and the Ruan brothers) plan to rob the convoy of birthday gifts for the Imperial Tutor, Cai Jing. They intend to strike at Yellow Soil Ridge near Anle Village. Chao Gai and his companions visit Bai Sheng and stay at his house and enlist his help in the robbery. The seven men (excluding Bai Sheng) disguise themselves as date traders and wait for their targets.

On Bai Sheng's part, he disguises himself as a wine seller and carries two buckets of wine past the ridge. The soldiers escorting the gifts are thirsty and they are strongly attracted to the wine. Yang Zhi, the leader of the escorts, suspects something amiss and he refuses to allow his men to drink the wine. Chao Gai and his friends buy one bucket of wine from Bai Sheng and Bai gives them the one without drugs. The soldiers think that the wine is fine and Yang Zhi reluctantly allows his men to buy the other bucket from Bai Sheng. The other bucket of wine has been spiked with drugs which will make the consumer unconscious. Chao Gai and his friends proceed to rob the convoy when Yang Zhi and his men are knocked out. Bai Sheng receives part of the treasure as his reward.

Joining Liangshan[edit]

Grand Secretary Liang Shijie is furious when he hears that the birthday gifts have been robbed and he orders the local government to arrest the robbers. The magistrate sends the constable He Tao to investigate the robbery. By coincidence, He Qing (He Tao's brother) knows that Chao Gai and Bai Sheng are involved in the robbery and he reports to his brother.

That night, He Tao leads soldiers to surround Bai Sheng's house and barge in. They search Bai Sheng's house for the loot but did not manage to find anything. Just then, He Tao notices that the earth under Bai Sheng's bed has been freshly dug and orders his men to dig. They find the treasure and Bai Sheng is arrested.

Bai Sheng refuses to disclose the names of his accomplices despite being subjected to torture during interrogation. Although he eventually names Chao Gai (the magistrate already knows that Chao is one of the robbers), he keeps denying that he knows the identities of the other robbers. Song Jiang alerts Chao Gai and his companions and they escape to join the outlaw band at Liangshan Marsh. Song Jiang also helps to secure Bai Sheng's release from prison. Bai Sheng goes to Liangshan to join his friends after that.

Campaigns and death[edit]

Bai Sheng becomes one of the scout leaders of Liangshan after the Grand Assembly. He follows the heroes on their campaigns against the Liao invaders and rebel forces after they have been granted amnesty by the emperor. He dies of illness after the battle of Hangzhou during the Fang La campaign.

References[edit]