Xi Xiang Ji is a well-known tale, which has its origins in a 8th/9th Century prose story called Yingying Zhuan (The Biography of Yingying). By the 12th Century it had developed into a long ballad, and it was then that the story acquired its happy ending and has remained popular ever since. The story concerns the romance between Zhang Sheng, a talented but poor scholar, and Cui Yingying, a beautiful maiden, whose mother Madam Zheng will not allow the couple to marry. She sends Zhang away to the capital to seek his fortune (scholarly success). In the end he is successful and claims Yingying as his bride.