Compare with an identical gilt copper Wheel of Law emblem in the Palace Museum Collection, Taipei, included in A Special Exhibition of Buddhist Gilt Votive Objects, National Palace Museum, Taipei, 1995 and illustrated in the catalogue, no. 10 (fig. 1). Compare also another Wheel of Law emblem with an identical base but mother-of-pearl inlaid central wheel included in the same exhibition and illustrated, no. 11.
The Wheel of Law is one of the Eight Buddhist Emblems and represents the inexorable expansion of the Buddha's teachings. The wheel is also represented among the Seven Regal Symbols where it is additionally known as the Holy Wheel, the Golden Wheel and the Wheel of Life.
Buddhist altar ornaments were made in a variety of materials, and complete sets can be found in the Lamaist temples in the precincts of the Forbidden City, Beijing, and in the Summer Palace in Chengde. See for example the set from the Chengde Imperial Mountain Resort Museum, included in the exhibition Imperial China: The Living Past, Art Gallery of New South Wales, Sydney, 1992, illustrated in the Catalogue, no. 78.