Ten Ancient Chinese Women Warriors

January 12, 2011
Editor: Zhao Chenxi


Lin Siniang


Ten Ancient Chinese Women Warriors
Lin Siniang fought to the death to safeguard the monarch who liberated her from prostitution. [hi.baidu.com]

Lin Siniang, who lived during the Ming Dynasty, worked as a prostitute on the banks of Qinhuai River, but was also adept with sword and spear. One day Zhu Changshu, king of the feudal Qingzhou state, came to the Qinhuai River and saw Lin Siniang practicing martial arts. He fell in love at first sight and took her as his princess.

The king bid Lin Siniang teach his concubines martial arts. Under her able guidance, all these women derived great enjoyment from learning the arts of attack and defense, and more or less formed a women's army, which made the king very happy.

Three years later, severe droughts hit Shanxi and Shaanxi provinces making local life even harder. There were revolts in many places, and one Shanxi bandit led his followers in an attack on Qingzhou. Zhu Changshu underestimated the enemy, who surrounded Qingzhou and held Zhu under siege in a mountain retreat.

On hearing of this calamity, Lin Siniang organized the women's army to rescue the king.

Seeing the advance of this army of women warriors took the wind out of the enemy's sails. Lin Siniang took the opportunity to penetrate the army ranks and kill several soldiers. Realizing they were up against a serious army, the enemy forces homed in on the brave women. Lin Siniang's troops were no match for them, and one by one the women died in battle, leaving only Lin Siniang. The chief general of the enemy troops told her she would be spared if she surrendered. But Lin paid no heed and carried on fighting until she was too exhausted to escape the sword that killed her. The uprising was later put down by an army that had come to help Lin's army, and the king was rescued.

The king was moved to tears at the sacrifice of Lin Siniang and her troops. He gave orders that Lin's body be found and ceremoniously buried in the garden of his mansion. Lin's soldiers were also buried with great ceremony.

(Source: wsic.ac.cn/ Translated by womenofchina.cn)

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