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Song Jiang

The name "Song Jiang" derived from the classical Chinese novel "Outlaws of Mt. Liang", which depicts the rebel inhabited in Mt. Liang against the corrupt authority of Song Dynasty (A.D. 960~1279). The rebel was comprised of outlaws from banished army captains¡Bdemoted civil servants to people with special talents. They were either framed up by the authority or fed up with the corrupt Song government. So they came to Mr. Liang and assembled armed forces to defeat the chase from government. Their chief was Song Jiang, who was cleaver and expert in tactical formations. So hundreds years after, people formed martial crews and drilled the same formations created by Song Jiang. Then subsequently such sort of martial crew was named as Song Jiang troupe.

There're altogether 9 Song Jiang troupes in Xigang Festival (if take troupe Grus¡BLion and Expedition of General 5 into account, it should be 18 in total). All of them derived from different masters hundreds years ago. During 18th century, there're frequent conflicts between 2 big families in Xigang. On occasion of fighting, all Song Jiang troupes which associated with each family would join the fights against each other. In order to tell the difference between opponent and alliance, those troupes which derived from same family or master, would wear straps in same color on their head or waist. Even though there's no more conflict between each other since 19th century, but during the course of festival, they would still wear straps with color of their own. By far there're 4 different colors in general, which including Green¡BRed¡BYellow and Cerulean Blue. So you can tell the family tie in between by the straps they wore.