|Water Margin character|
|Nickname||"Demon King of Chaos"
|Rank||61st, Correct Star (地然星) of the 72 Earthly Fiends|
|Infantry leader of Liangshan|
|Origin||Bandit leader from Mount Mangdang|
|Hometown||Puzhou (in present-day Chongqing)|
|First appearance||Chapter 60|
|Weapon||Chain spiked mace (流星槌)|
Fan Rui is a fictional character in the Water Margin, one of the Four Great Classical Novels of Chinese literature. He ranks 61st of the 108 Liangshan heroes and 25th of the 72 Earthly Fiends. He is nicknamed "Demon King of Chaos".
Fan Rui is a native of Puzhou (in present-day Chongqing). He has untidy black hair and dons a suit of armour over his silk robe. Fan Rui excels in martial arts and wields a spiked chain mace in combat, presenting a fearsome image to his enemies. Besides being a powerful warrior, Fan Rui is also a master of Taoist sorcery. He can control elements of the weather and subdue various demons. He is thus nicknamed "Demon King of Chaos".
Fan Rui becomes the leader of a group of bandits on Mount Mangdang (near present-day Pei County, Xuzhou, Jiangsu). He is flanked by his deputies, Xiang Chong and Li Gun, and they have an army of 3,000 bandits under their command. They rob the rich to help the poor, attack corrupt government officials and uphold justice.
The three bandit leaders claim that they will conquer Liangshan Marsh one day, provoking the outlaws from Liangshan to attack them. Shi Jin of Liangshan leads the vanguard army to attack Mount Mangdang, but loses the first battle against Fan Rui's forces, and manages to escape only when reinforcements arrive.
The next day, Gongsun Sheng deploys the Liangshan troops in the Eight Trigrams Formation to counter Fan Rui. Fan Rui uses magic to darken the sky and conjure a sandstorm to throw the enemy into confusion. He orders Xiang Chong and Li Gun to lead 500 men to break the formation. Gongsun Sheng engages Fan Rui in a battle of magic powers and defeats him. Both Xiang Chong and Li Gun are captured in the formation and Fan Rui escapes in a frenzy.
Song Jiang treats Xiang Chong and Li Gun with respect and succeeds in persuading them to join the Liangshan cause of "delivering justice on Heaven's behalf". Xiang Chong and Li Gun are touched and they return to Mount Mangdang and persuade Fan Rui to join Liangshan as well. Fan Rui becomes Gongsun Sheng's apprentice and learns Taoist magic from the latter.
Fan Rui becomes one of the leaders of the Liangshan infantry 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. During the Tian Hu campaign, Fan Rui challenges Tian's magician, Qiao Daoqing, to a battle but he is no match for Qiao and faces defeat. Qiao Daoqing is overcome by Gongsun Sheng later.
Fan Rui is one of the few lucky survivors of Liangshan after the Fang La campaign. He is unwilling to take up any official post offered to him by the emperor in recognition of his contributions. Instead, he follows Gongsun Sheng and Zhu Wu to study Taoism for the rest of his days.
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- Buck, Pearl. All Men are Brothers. Moyer Bell Ltd, 2006. ISBN 9781559213035.
- Zhang, Lin Ching. Biographies of Characters in Water Margin. Writers Publishing House, 2009. ISBN 978-7506344784.
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- Miyamotois, Yoko. Water Margin: Chinese Robin Hood and His Bandits.
- Keffer, David. Outlaws of the Marsh.