This porcelain jardiniere reflects a predilection at the Imperial court for Occidental subject matters. The theme of 'foreigners' bearing gifts as part of diplomatic exchanges appears to be an appealing decorative topic, and similar scenes can be found on a vase enamelled with a procession of tribute bearers in the National Palace Museum, illustrated in Porcelains in Polychrome and Contrasting Colours - The Complete Collection of Treasures of the Palace Museum, Hong Kong 1999, pp. 274-275, no. 251. Another example is a brushpot decorated with European figures in a horse-drawn carriage, from the Robert Chang collections, sold in our Hong Kong Rooms, 2 November 1999, lot 523.