Hao Siwen

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Hao Siwen
Water Margin character
Nickname "Wood Dog of Well"
井木犴
Rank 41st, Magnificent Star (地雄星) of the 72 Earthly Fiends
Tiger Cub Scouting General of Liangshan
Origin Imperial general
First appearance Chapter 63
Names
Simplified Chinese 郝思文
Traditional Chinese 郝思文
Pinyin Hǎo Sīwén
Wade–Giles Hao Szu-wen
This is a Chinese name; the family name is Hao.

Hao Siwen is a fictional character in Water Margin, one of the Four Great Classical Novels of Chinese literature. He ranks 41st of the 108 Liangshan heroes and 5th of the 72 Earthly Fiends. He is nicknamed "Wood Dog of Well".

Background[edit]

Hao Siwen's mother dreamt that the celestial "Wood Dog of Well"[a] is going to be reincarnated into the human world. She became pregnant shortly after that and gave birth to Hao Siwen. Hao Siwen is nicknamed after the celestial creature because he is believed to be its human incarnation. He excels in martial arts and serves the imperial court as a general. He is also the sworn brother of Guan Sheng.

Becoming an outlaw[edit]

When the outlaws from Liangshan Marsh besiege Daming Prefecture (in present-day Handan, Hebei) to rescue Lu Junyi, Grand Secretary Liang Shijie calls for reinforcements from the imperial court. Xuan Zan recommends Guan Sheng to the Imperial Tutor Cai Jing. Guan Sheng is appointed as commander of the imperial army with Xuan Zan and Hao Siwen serving as his deputies and leaders of the vanguard army.

Guan Sheng gains the advantage in the battle against the outlaws initially, but he is lured into a trap by Huyan Zhuo and captured. Xuan Zan fights with Liangshan's Qin Ming and is defeated and captured as well. Hao Siwen fights with Lin Chong and Hua Rong joins in. Hao Siwen is unable to take on two opponents at the same time and he retreats. He is captured by Hu Sanniang later. Song Jiang treats the captives with respect and succeeds in persuading them to join the Liangshan cause of "delivering justice on Heaven's behalf".

Cai Jing assigns Shan Tinggui and Wei Dingguo to lead the imperial army after Guan Sheng's defection. Guan Sheng volunteers to lead the attack on the imperial forces with Xuan Zan and Hao Siwen as his deputies. Shan Tinggui lures Hao Siwen into the enemy formation, where he is captured. Hao Siwen is escorted as a prisoner-of-war back to Daming Prefecture. Along the way, the bandits from Mount Deadwood led by Bao Xu and Li Kui attack the convoy and rescue Hao Siwen and Xuan Zan.

Campaigns and death[edit]

Hao Siwen 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 Emperor Huizong. During the campaign against Fang La, Hao Siwen and Xu Ning are part of the scouting team assigned to watch the northern gate of Hangzhou. The gate unexpectedly opens and a large enemy force rushes out. Hao Siwen is captured and Xu Ning attempts to save him but is hit by a poisoned arrow. Hao Siwen meets a gruesome death at the hands of the enemy general Fang Tianding, who beheads and dismembers him.

Notes[edit]

  1. ^ Well is one of the Twenty-eight mansions in Chinese astronomy and is represented by a dog, which follows Wood of the Five Elements.

References[edit]