|Water Margin character|
|Nickname||"General of Sacred Water"
|Rank||44th, Unique Star (地奇星) of the 72 Earthly Fiends|
|Tiger Cub Scouting General of Liangshan|
|Origin||Imperial drill instructor|
|Hometown||Lingzhou (凌州; present-day Ling County, Dezhou, Shandong)|
|First appearance||Chapter 67|
|Weapon||Black spear, bow and arrows|
Shan Tinggui is a fictional character in the Water Margin, one of the Four Great Classical Novels of Chinese literature. He ranks 44th of the 108 Liangshan heroes and 8th of the 72 Earthly Fiends. He is nicknamed "General of Sacred Water".
Shan Tinggui dons a squarish helmet with a black feather at its peak and a suit of black armour. He rides on a black stallion and is armed with a black spear and a bow and arrows. He is an accomplished military general and strategist and serves the imperial court as a drill instructor in his hometown of Lingzhou (凌州; present-day Ling County, Dezhou, Shandong) together with Wei Dingguo. He specialises in using water-based attacks on enemies. He knows how to use the force of nature to flood and drown entire armies. As such, he is nicknamed "General of Sacred Water".
Becoming an outlaw
After Guan Sheng defects to the outlaws from Liangshan Marsh, the Imperial Tutor Cai Jing recommends Shan Tinggui and Wei Dingguo to the emperor to lead the imperial army to quell the outlaws. When the outlaws receive news of the attack, Guan Sheng volunteers to lead an army with Xuan Zan and Hao Siwen to engage the enemy. At Lingzhou, Hao Siwen and Xuan Zan are lured into the enemy formation by Shan Tinggui and Wei Dingguo respectively and captured. Hao Siwen and Xuan Zan are escorted as prisoners of war back to Daming Prefecture (in present-day Handan, Hebei). Along the way, the bandits from Mount Deadwood led by Bao Xu and Li Kui attack the convoy and free the captives.
Guan Sheng challenges Shan Tinggui to a fight outside Lingzhou. Guan Sheng feigns defeat and retreats to lure Shan Tinggui to follow him. He turns around suddenly and knocks Shan Tinggui off his steed with a surprise attack. Shan Tinggui is captured and escorted back to Liangshan. Song Jiang treats Shan Tinggui with respect and succeeds in persuading Shan to join the Liangshan cause of "delivering justice on Heaven's behalf". Shan Tinggui proceeds to persuade Wei Dingguo to join Liangshan as well and succeeds.
Campaigns and death
Shan Tinggui 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, Shan Tinggui is part of Lu Junyi's army and they capture the enemy cities of Xuanzhou and Huzhou, making great contributions to the nation. Shan Tinggui and Wei Dingguo are later assigned to lead the attack on Shezhou (present-day She County, Anhui). They see that the city gates are wide open without any enemies inside. Eager to earn the top credit for victory, they charge into the city, without suspecting that it may be a trap. They fall into a pit and are killed by enemy troops waiting in ambush.
- (Chinese) Li, Mengxia. 108 Heroes from the Water Margin, page 89. 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.
- Shibusawa, Kou. Bandit Kings of Ancient China, pages 97–98. KOEI, 1989.
- (Japanese) Ichisada, Miyazaki. Suikoden: Kyoko no naka no Shijitsu. Chuo Koronsha, 1993. ISBN 978-4122020559.
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- Keffer, David. Outlaws of the Marsh.