Mirror case with lunar scene


Not on view

In imperial China, scholars from humble backgrounds could attain upward social mobility by passing the civil service examination (held by the state every three years) and becoming a career government official. This achievement was often symbolized as “plucking a branch off the osmanthus tree on the moon” in popular culture. This embroidered silk case depicts the goddess Chang’e who, accompanied by her attendant and rabbit, hands a branch of the tree to the successful scholar.

Mirror case with lunar scene, Embroidered silk gauze, China

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