Figure of K'uei Hsing (Kui Xing)

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K'uei Hsing (Kui Xing) is a character in Chinese mythology, the god of examinations, and an associate or servant of the god of literature, Wen Chang. Standing on a fish-dragon's head, he holds up a writing brush in his right hand. He is said to have been an historical figure, a poor but brilliant student called Zhong Kui who passed the imperial examinations with high honours. However, because he was ugly, he was not allowed to enter government service. In despair, he drowned himself but was carried by a fish-dragon up to heaven where he became a star ('Xing' in Chinese) of the Great Bear constellation (known in China as the Palace of Literary Genius).