The Yuqing Gong was built during the Kangxi period under the guidance of Prince Yi, and was subsequently a residence of imperial princes. It was Prince Hongli's (Qianlong) residence aged 12-17. The emperor Jiaqing lived there as a child, together with his brothers. After Qianlong's retirement, he moved back into the Yuqing Gong. During the Tongzhi and Guangxu periods, this palace was used as an Imperial library until Guangxu eventually made it his own official residence.
The drawing on this finely worked embroiderey is clearly a product of the tradition of copying court paintings in fine woven or embroidered textiles which began as early as the Song period. As in the present lot, many of these Song-inspired compositions have a dynamic tension between the worked surface and the empty background. See, for example, two embroideries included in A Special Exhibition of Embroidery, National Palace Museum, Taiwan, pp. 40 and 70. See, also, footnote to lot 220.