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Yang Fang Leiden is a playable character in Final Fantasy IV and its sequel, Final Fantasy IV: The After Years. He is a Monk from the kingdom of Fabul, and is among the highest ranked and most respected of their number. Despite this, he is a humble man, and so does not bask in his glory, but rather tries his best to be respectful. Yang is generally well disciplined, but has trouble with sleeping in, requiring the intervention of his wife and her trusty frying pan to wake him up.

Appearance and PersonalityEdit

In all his appearances and artwork Yang sports a blond mustache and bald head with braided ponytail. In Final Fantasy IV and his Amano artwork he is shirtless, with red bands on his wrists; red pants tied at the ankle; a yellow sash around his waist, and flat brown shoes. He also wears red earrings, and has a red tattoo on his left shoulder. In The After Years he retains the red pants, but now wears a red and purple sash over his left shoulder, and another tied to his left thigh. He wears white boots, and his hair and mustache are substantially longer.

Taciturn, humble and polite, yet fiercely protective, Yang has no wish to hurt others or involve them in situations where they could be in danger, but is always grateful for assistance. His high standing in Fabul means that he has garnered much respect, and the only person he appears to quail before the might of is his own wife. In both Interlude and The After Years, it is demonstrated that Yang copes with stressful situations where he is of no use by training himself and the other monks, though in the former he is unable to stop himself from rushing to Sheila's side as she gives birth. During The After Years he initially refuses to train Ursula, believing she has no need to train for war, but after witnessing her selfless protection of the monks accompanying her, he takes her on as a disciple. However he warns that now she is just another student, not a daughter or a princess, and demonstrates this when training her in the game's ending. According to Sheila, Yang admitted to her privately "how can I believe in my people's future if I cannot even believe in my own daughter?"

EtymologyEdit

Yang, in yin and yang, is the word for one half of the two opposing forces in Chinese philosophy, and is described as "bright positive masculine principle" in Chinese dualistic cosmology.

Yang's surname in katakana can also be read as Raiden, a god of thunder and lightning in Japanese mythology. Written in hanzi, the same deity in Chinese is pronounced "Léidiàn".

"Leiden" may be derived from German or Dutch, either meaning "to suffer" (German: leiden; Dutch: lijden), or "to lead" (German: leiten; Dutch: leiden). In Japanese, Yang's name is also pronounced identical to the name of the historical Jan van Leiden.

Leiden is also a city in The Netherlands.

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