This unusual jade and metal case might have been used to hold an archer's thumb ring or, as the jade cover is reticulated, to hold potpourri. As the cover and bottom of the brass section are pierced in the center it is likely that it would have been suspended, perhaps from a gentleman's belt or from a hat stand, or placed inside a hat box.
Two examples of cylindrical cases of this type, described as archer's thumb ring cases and dated to the 18th century, have been published by Gerard Hawthorn Ltd, London. One of jade with inscribed sides, which is pierced on top, is illustrated in Oriental Works of Art, June 2002, no. 59; the other of ivory with pierced top and with openwork sides is illustrated in Oriental Works of Art, London, June 2004, no. 47, where it can be seen to be suspended from a silk cord.