Ma Lin (Water Margin)
|Water Margin character|
|Nickname||"Iron Flute Deity"
|Rank||67th, Bright Star (地明星) of the 72 Earthly Fiends|
|Tiger Cub Scouting General of Liangshan|
|Origin||Bandit leader from Mount Yellow Gate|
|Hometown||Jiankang Prefecture (present-day Nanjing, Jiangsu)|
|First appearance||Chapter 41|
|Weapon||Pair of sabers|
Ma Lin is a fictional character in the Water Margin, one of the Four Great Classical Novels of Chinese literature. He ranks 67th of the 108 Liangshan heroes and 31st of the 72 Earthly Fiends. He is nicknamed "Iron Flute Deity".
Ma Lin is from Jiankang Prefecture (present-day Nanjing, Jiangsu). He is highly skilled in martial arts and can take on dozens of enemies at the same time. He wields a pair of bronze sabers in battle. Ma can also play the flute very well and earns himself the nickname "Iron Flute Deity".
After the outlaws from Liangshan Marsh storm the execution ground in Jiangzhou (present-day Jiangxi) and rescue Song Jiang and Dai Zong, they pass by Mount Yellow Gate on the return journey. The four bandit leaders stop Song Jiang's party and request to join Liangshan. Song Jiang agrees and they follow him back to Liangshan.
Ma Lin participates in many of the campaigns against the enemies of Liangshan and makes great contributions. He disguises himself as a constable and pretends to arrest Li Ying and Du Xing and brings them to Liangshan to join the outlaw band as well.
Campaigns and death
Ma Lin becomes one of the leaders of the Liangshan cavalry 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 Fang La campaign, Ma Lin is assigned to attack Black Dragon Ridge. He engages the enemy general Bai Qin in a fight and Bai knocks him off his horse when he is distracted. Shi Bao then seizes the opportunity to slice Ma Lin into two when he is down.
- (Chinese) Li, Mengxia. 108 Heroes from the Water Margin, page 135. EPB Publishers Pte Ltd, 1992. ISBN 9971-0-0252-3.
- 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.
- Keffer, David. Outlaws of the Marsh.
- Miyamotois, Yoko. Water Margin: Chinese Robin Hood and His Bandits.
- (Japanese) Ichisada, Miyazaki. Suikoden: Kyoko no naka no Shijitsu. Chuo Koronsha, 1993. ISBN 978-4122020559.
- Shibusawa, Kou. Bandit Kings of Ancient China, page 98. KOEI, 1989.