The name inscribed over the gateway of the palace describes it as the Teng Wang Palace in Nancheng, Jiangxi Province, which was reputed for its fine architecture, magnificent lakeside views, and according to the poet Wang Bo, an ideal venue for the gathering of intellectuals and the literati.
The carving on the present tray is outstanding, with much attention paid to the detailing of the palace architectural features. It is also very rare to find the name of a specific location specified on lacquerware. Compare this with a slightly earlier cinnabar lacquer circular dish carved with a similar composition, this time describing the palace as the Orchid Pavilion, and with the addition of a date, second year of Hongzhi, corresponding to 1489; cf. the collection of Lady Garner, illustrated by Sir Harry Garner, Chinese Lacquer, London, 1979, col. pl. C and fig. 61.