These table cabinets were used as dressing cases by both men and women to store toiletries, jewellery and other valuables. They were also used on desks for the storage of stationery, writing implements and seals. These pieces are called guanpi xiang, official boxes, but in fact, their construction is more like a cabinet than a box.
There is a quantity of table cabinets that has survived but none as glamorous as this example with picturesque marble doors.
The metalware is made of baitong beautifully and intricately worked hinges, plates and pulls. Some pieces are decorated with hongtong and huangtong inlays.
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