|Water Margin character|
|Nickname||"Forest Emerging Dragon"
|Rank||90th, Short Star (地短星) of the 72 Earthly Fiends|
|Infantry leader of Liangshan|
|Origin||Bandit leader from Mount Dengyun|
|Hometown||Laizhou, Yantai, Shandong|
|First appearance||Chapter 49|
|Weapon||Flying Tiger Staff (飛虎棒)|
Zou Yuan is a fictional character in the Water Margin, one of the Four Great Classical Novels of Chinese literature. He ranks 90th of the 108 Liangshan heroes and 54th of the 72 Earthly Fiends. He is nicknamed "Forest Emerging Dragon".
Zou Yuan is from Laizhou, Yantai, Shandong. He has a reputation for being righteous and honest as well as for being a powerful fighter. However, he is also arrogant and fiercely competitive. He is addicted to gambling as a youth and wanders around the land.
Zou Yuan is the uncle of Zou Run and he is around the same age as his nephew. Both of them become the leaders of a group of bandits on Mount Dengyun and they rob the rich to help the poor. They are also close friends of Sun Xin, Yang Lin, Deng Fei and Shi Yong. The Zous aid Sun Li and his friends in executing a raid on the prison to rescue the Xie brothers, who have been wrongly imprisoned.
The outlaws from Liangshan Marsh are locked in a stalemate in a battle with the Zhu Family Village. Sun Li and his team have just joined Liangshan after the jailbreak and they volunteer to conduct an espionage mission in the village. Zou Yuan and his nephew follow Sun Li's team on the mission and contribute greatly to the capture of the village.
Zou Yuan 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. He is trampled to death by enemy cavalry in the battle of Qingxi County during the Fang La campaign.
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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.
- Keffer, David. Outlaws of the Marsh.
- Miyamotois, Yoko. Water Margin: Chinese Robin Hood and His Bandits.
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- Shibusawa, Kou. Bandit Kings of Ancient China. KOEI, 1989.