A new series of coins from China picture some of the memorable characters featured in the 100 chapters of one of the great classical novels of Chinese literature, "Outlaws of the Marsh."
The Chinese saga "Outlaws of the Marsh" is must reading for Chinese high school students, and was even carried by Chairman Mao during the Long March (retreat of the Red Army from the Nationalists in 1934) as a constant reminder of the proud traditions of the Chinese people. It tells the stories of 108 outlaws who became heroes during the Song Dynasty in the years leading up to the establishment of the Southern Song regime in 1127.
Set in mountain fortresses, tea houses, inns, private houses, courtrooms and on journeys by road and water, their tales involve stratagems, seductions, betrayals, warnings, and a wealth of other incidents. After defeating the imperial armies, the outlaws are eventually granted amnesty by the emperor, who then recruits the outlaws to form an imperial military contingent. The heroes eliminate foreign invaders of the Liao Dynasty and quell the uprisings by rebel forces around the nation. [click to continue…]